Posts for category: Dental Procedures
We’ve developed a number of effective treatments for periodontal (gum) disease. Depending on how far and deep a patient’s infection has advanced, treatment can be quite invasive and even require surgery. The more invasive, the longer and more uncomfortable the healing process can be.
But using a medical laser could make that less so. Although its use for gum disease treatment is still in its infancy, the latest observations from the field seem to show patients undergoing laser treatment may have less tissue trauma and bleeding, less discomfort after the procedure and quicker healing times.
Gum disease is a bacterial infection mostly caused by dental plaque, a thin film of food particles that build up on teeth in the absence of effective oral hygiene. The infection can advance deep below the gum line, weakening gum attachment to teeth and destroying supporting bone. Ultimately the affected teeth can be lost.
Traditionally, the only way to stop the disease is to manually remove plaque buildup on teeth and gum surfaces, which is continuing to sustain the infection, with special hand instruments called scalers or ultrasonic equipment. Because it’s important to remove as much plaque and diseased tissue as possible, we may need to perform a surgical procedure called flap surgery to move some of the gum tissues out of the way to get to these deeper areas. As with any surgery, this can create tissue trauma that may cause discomfort during the healing process.
Our new alternative is to use an Nd:YAG medical laser in a procedure known as Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure or LANAP. With light energy delivered through a small fiber no more than the width of three human hairs, the laser can pinpoint diseased tissue and destroy bacteria through intense heat. Because of the laser beam’s tiny width and pulsing action, healthy tissue is at less risk for trauma than with the traditional treatment.
Coupled with other techniques, LANAP procedures could remove as much infected tissue and plaque as traditional methods, but with less healthy tissue trauma. In the future, then, patients with advanced gum disease undergoing laser treatment could have less bleeding and discomfort and faster healing times.
If you would like more information on treating gum disease, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Treating Gum Disease with Lasers.”
What your dentists in McLean, Virginia want you to know
Do you want to restore both the strength and beauty of your smile? Do you suffer from damaged, broken teeth? If so, you need to discover the many benefits of dental crowns. Dr. Cecilia Gyllenhoff and Dr. Samuel Cappiello at McLean Dental Care in McLean, Virginia want to share how dental crowns can help you and your smile.
One of the major benefits of dental crowns is that they provide strong protection against the pressure and force caused by biting down and chewing your food. A crown is stronger than a filling because it covers the entire visible surface of your tooth above the gumline. This means that when you bite down, the force is spread out over the entire surface of your tooth, protecting it from breaking.
Today’s crowns are made of natural-looking materials like porcelain, which provides another major benefit. Porcelain is light-reflective, just like natural tooth enamel, so your crown will look beautifully natural, and blend perfectly with your smile.
Porcelain crowns will also resist stains, which means your new crowns will look beautifully new for years, even if you smoke or drink coffee. The natural good looks, strength and longevity of porcelain crowns make them one of the best ways to repair damaged teeth.
To receive your crown, the dentist prepares your tooth, reducing its size, so that it may fit under your crown. An impression of your tooth is taken and sent to a lab where a custom-designed crown is manufactured. Your doctor can provide you with a temporary crown until your permanent crown arrives from the lab.
There are several things you can do to maintain a healthy oral regiment and prolong your crowns.
Maintain a hygienic oral regimen to avoid plaque buildup and cavities will help crowns last. Make sure your regimen consists of brushing your teeth twice a day, and flossing at least once before bed.
Wear a nightguard if you suffer from bruxism, teeth grinding, as well, so make sure you discuss this with your dentist.
See your dentist twice a year for professional cleanings, and eating healthy improve the chances of your crowns lasting longer.
You deserve to have a beautiful, strong smile so get started by calling Dr. Cecilia Gyllenhoff and Dr. Samuel Cappiello at McLean Dental Care in McLean, Virginia. Don’t wait for your new smile! Call today!
Sometimes it seems that appearances count for everything—especially in Hollywood. But just recently, Lonnie Chaviz, the 10-year-old actor who plays young Randall on the hit TV show This Is Us, delivered a powerful message about accepting differences in body image. And the whole issue was triggered by negative social media comments about his smile.
Lonnie has a noticeable diastema—that is, a gap between his two front teeth; this condition is commonly seen in children, but is less common in adults. There are plenty of celebrities who aren’t bothered by the excess space between their front teeth, such as Michael Strahan, Lauren Hutton and Vanessa Paradis. However, there are also many people who choose to close the gap for cosmetic or functional reasons.
Unfortunately, Lonnie had been on the receiving end of unkind comments about the appearance of his smile. But instead of getting angry, the young actor posted a thoughtful reply via Instagram video, in which he said: “I could get my gap fixed. Braces can fix this, but like, can you fix your heart, though?”
Lonnie is raising an important point: Making fun of how someone looks shows a terrible lack of compassion. Besides, each person’s smile is uniquely their own, and getting it “fixed” is a matter of personal choice. It’s true that in most circumstances, if the gap between the front teeth doesn’t shrink as you age and you decide you want to close it, orthodontic appliances like braces can do the job. Sometimes, a too-big gap can make it more difficult to eat and to pronounce some words. In other situations, it’s simply a question of aesthetics—some like it; others would prefer to live without it.
There’s a flip side to this issue as well. When teeth need to be replaced, many people opt to have their smile restored just the way it was, rather than in some “ideal” manner. That could mean that their dentures are specially fabricated with a space between the front teeth, or the crowns of their dental implants are spaced farther apart than they normally would be. For these folks, the “imperfection” is so much a part of their unique identity that changing it just seems wrong.
So if you’re satisfied with the way your smile looks, all you need to do is keep up with daily brushing and flossing, and come in for regular checkups and cleanings to keep it healthy and bright. If you’re unsatisfied, ask us how we could help make it better. And if you need tooth replacement, be sure to talk to us about all of your options—teeth that are regular and “Hollywood white;” teeth that are natural-looking, with minor variations in color and spacing; and teeth that look just like the smile you’ve always had.
Because when it comes to your smile, we couldn’t agree more with what Lonnie Chaviz said at the end of his video: “Be who you want to be. Do what you want to do. Do you. Be you. Believe in yourself.”
If you have questions about cosmetic dentistry, please contact our office or schedule a consultation. You can read more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Beautiful Smiles by Design” and “The Magic of Orthodontics.”
How Can Veneers Help My Smile?
Porcelain veneers can give you the smile you've always wanted. Veneers are ultra-thin, custom-made shells that are placed over the front part of the teeth. Dr. Cecilia Gyllenhoff and Dr. Samuel Cappiello of Mclean Dental Care, which is located in McLean, VA, offer veneers to their patients. Read on to find out how veneers can help your smile.
1. Whiten Your Smile- Tobacco use, certain medications, and pigments from certain foods and beverages can cause stains on your teeth. Porcelain veneers can give you the bright-white smile you've always wanted. Unlike, tooth enamel, dental veneers resist stains remarkably well.
2. Close Tooth Gaps- A diastema is a gap between the teeth. This condition affects people of all ages. These spaces can form anywhere in the mouth. Porcelain veneers are routinely used to close gaps between teeth. These porcelain shells fit over the surface of your teeth to create an evenly-spaced smile.
3. Restore Chipped Teeth- Porcelain veneers are used to restore teeth that are chipped, cracked, or broken. They can cover them and restore their appearance and function. A porcelain veneer covers the front of the tooth with a thicker section to replace the broken part of the tooth.
4. Strengthen Teeth- Porcelain veneers are incredibly strong and durable. They provide strength comparable to tooth enamel. Veneers can protect and strengthen your worn-down teeth. This is possible due to the durable material that composes veneers as they cover your teeth.
Ready for a smile makeover? Start your journey today! Call Mclean Dental Care at (703) 734-0100 today to schedule a dental consultation in McLean, VA. Veneers have helped millions of people improve their smiles, boosting their self-esteem, and changing their lives. And they can do the same for you!
When die-hard music fans hear that their favorite performer is canceling a gig, it’s a big disappointment—especially if the excuse seems less than earth-shaking. Recently, British pop sensation Dua Lipa needed to drop two dates from her world tour with Bruno Mars. However, she had a very good reason.
“I’ve been performing with an awful pain due to my wisdom teeth,” the singer tweeted, “and as advised by my dentist and oral surgeon I have had to have them imminently removed.”
The dental problem Lipa had to deal with, impacted wisdom teeth, is not uncommon in young adults. Also called third molars, wisdom teeth are the last teeth to erupt (emerge from beneath the gums), generally making their appearance between the ages of 18-24. But their debut can cause trouble: Many times, these teeth develop in a way that makes it impossible for them to erupt without negatively affecting the healthy teeth nearby. In this situation, the teeth are called “impacted.”
A number of issues can cause impacted wisdom teeth, including a tooth in an abnormal position, a lack of sufficient space in the jaw, or an obstruction that prevents proper emergence. The most common treatment for impaction is to extract (remove) one or more of the wisdom teeth. This is a routine in-office procedure that may be performed by general dentists or dental specialists.
It’s thought that perhaps 7 out of 10 people ages 20-30 have at least one impacted wisdom tooth. Some cause pain and need to be removed right away; however, this is not always the case. If a wisdom tooth is found to be impacted and is likely to result in future problems, it may be best to have it extracted before symptoms appear. Unfortunately, even with x-rays and other diagnostic tests, it isn’t always possible to predict exactly when—or if—the tooth will actually begin causing trouble. In some situations, the best option may be to carefully monitor the tooth at regular intervals and wait for a clearer sign of whether extraction is necessary.
So if you’re around the age when wisdom teeth are beginning to appear, make sure not to skip your routine dental appointments. That way, you might avoid emergency surgery when you’ve got other plans—like maybe your own world tour!
If you would like more information about wisdom tooth extraction, please call our office to arrange a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Wisdom Teeth” and “Removing Wisdom Teeth.”