April, 2019 Dentistry Newsletter
What is a Zirconia Crown?
A crown is used to cover an implant or damaged tooth; in many cases it’s referred to as a “cap”. A crown is a very common dental tool that helps protect the tooth and increase functionality. A zirconia crown is simply a crown made from a light-colored metal called zirconium oxide. Many people are more familiar with gold, porcelain or ceramic crowns however zirconia has its place as well. A zirconia crown is low-maintenance and incredibly durable because zirconia crowns are actually the cheapest one on the market and yes, we do them.
In addition to durability another advantage of a zirconia crown is that it does not have any toxicity to the body. This means there won’t be any allergic reactions from a patient’s body responding to the metal. This also eliminates other potential complications that can result from the use of other metals. Zirconia crowns come in a variety of different shades which means your dentist will have a good chance of matching your crown to your surrounding teeth and maintaining the look of your natural smile. It’s also highly stain resistant and will hold its color better than either a composite or acrylic option.
There are a few potential disadvantages to the use of zirconia for crowns. While the color matching is very good, it’s not perfect. For patients getting a crown on a front tooth porcelain may be a better choice. In addition, this type of cap makes it harder for your dentist to detect decay in the tooth underneath. If a cavity were to be found the crown would have to be removed in order to receive treatment. Also the hardness of this material, while a positive in terms of durability, can cause damage to surrounding teeth by rubbing against them. In most cases this can be avoided with proper fitting, but it is a possibility.
For many patient’s zirconia crowns are an excellent option that gives them fantastic results for many years to come. If you’d like additional information, reach out to the team at Aesthetic Dentistry, P.C.
Choosing a Dentist for Your Child
Every parent wants to make sure their child has a great experience when they have their first dental visit. Your child may be too young to understand what’s going on, or may be old enough to have a very real fear of the dentist. In any case, you want to make sure their interactions at the dentist office leave them feeling safe and assured that nothing bad is going to happen to them during their visit. There are several things to consider when looking for a dentist to take your child to.
A Dentist Who Specializes in Children’s Teeth – when you begin to look for a dentist, give the office a call and ask how often they see children. If children are a rare event for that office, it might be best to keep looking. A dentist who works with children regularly is well equipped both to calm a frightened child and understand the complexities of little teeth. The development of teeth in the early years has its own unique set of variables for your child’s dentist to be aware of.
Child-Sized Tools – another advantage to selecting a dentist that works regularly with children is that they often have tools in smaller sizes that are more appropriate for the size of a child’s mouth. They also tend to be already in the habit of explaining what they’re doing as they go along. These explanations can go a long way towards calming a child’s fears in a room filled with unfamiliar, and often scary looking, objects.
Distractions – a child-friendly dentist office is also likely to provide excellent distractions such as toys, videos, coloring supplies, and more. This can be extremely helpful when sitting in the waiting room, or needing to distract a distraught child during an exam. For families who need to bring multiple kids in at one time, being able to keep the others entertained when it’s not their time with the dentist, can make the whole process so much smoother.
Setting Your Child Up for Life – beyond the regular exam a big component to taking children to the dentist is to help them develop good oral hygiene habits that will last their entire life. Working with a dentist who is used to children means you’ll get someone who will take the time to teach your child the value of brushing twice a day, flossing regularly, and making good food choices to protect their teeth. It also means that your dentist will be up-to-date on the latest trends such as topical fluoride treatments or sealants.
You may be wondering if a pediatric dentist is the only choice for your child, while that can certainly be a great option it’s not the only one. There are many dentist offices, such as Aesthetic Dentistry, P.C. who love working with children and are well equipped to do so.
Is Sedation Dentistry Safe?
If you’re one of the many people who get extremely nervous, or down right terrified, at the thought of going to the dentist rest assured you’re definitely not alone. There are countless people that opt to endure tooth pain as long as humanly possible before stepping foot into the dentist office. If that description fits you, or someone you love, you’ve likely thought about the idea of sedation dentistry. Nitrous oxide sedation can help reduce your anxiety level during a dental procedure. It can be used for everything from a standard cleaning to a more major dental procedure. In most situations your dentist helps you determine when sedation is appropriate based on the degree of fear you suffer from.
Many people misunderstand nitrous oxide sedation dentistry and believe they will be completely asleep during the process. The reality is that most patients are still awake. In fact, there are varying levels of sedation, all of which leave you relaxed but not asleep.
Oral Sedation – the dose of this type of sedation can be adjusted to take you anywhere from somewhat relaxed to slurring your words when you speak and not having much memory of the procedure. It’s a very simple and safe option with a pill being taken roughly an hour prior to the procedure.
Inhaled Minimal Sedation – this is what’s commonly referred to as “laughing gas” or nitrous oxide . You breath in nitrous oxide and oxygen through a mask placed on your face. In this option the dentist can adjust the amount you receive throughout the procedure, and it wears off quickly allowing you to drive yourself home afterwards.
Sedation dentistry can be a great choice to help those who struggle with significant fear of the dentist. One consideration to keep in mind though is that the cost is typically not covered by insurance unless it’s considered medically necessary for the procedure. Of course it also adds a degree of risk by introducing medication to your body. Most people respond well to sedation and it’s considered generally safe. You should discuss your fears and sedation options with your dentist before your next visit.