Surgery Improved with Lasers

Surgery Improved with Lasers

Laser surgery in dentistry

Sci-Fi has become reality and lasers are becoming readily utilized in many different medical applications. Dentistry is no exception.  For you, the patient, this means improved healing times, increased accuracy in treated areas, and best of all, reduced pain due to procedures. For dentist it means greater precision, increased patient compliance and ultimately better over all health and better outcomes for patients.

Lasers are not new in dental medicine but their applications are continually expanding.  Lightwalker lasers, used at Dr. Marilyn K. Jones, have been leading the way in advancements for almost five decades, in precision, performance, consistency, and overall perfection.

Dentists have been using special lasers in dental treatments for 4 decades. Lasers work by delivering energy in the form of light. The light from dental lasers can be used to vaporize tissue, cut tissue, harden and enforce a bond between a filler and the remaining tooth, stop bleeding, cut away tissue or aid in whitening teeth. The precision offered with such an advanced laser is unequalled.

Why Lightwalker Lasers are Special

New innovations in surgical lasers are bringing new solutions for patients and doctors. Lasers quickly and painlessly treat a myriad of oral conditions with improved healing, improved accuracy, and less overall invasiveness. Lightwalker Fotona lasers are so accurate and reliable they can be successfully used for very delicate procedures and very specialized procedures. Used to treat some types of decay or cavities, used in gum surgery, hard and soft tissue applications, for treating gum disease and surgical, even for a nonsurgical treatment and throat anomalies — especially those related to sleep apnea. Procedures that once were invasive, with long healing times are now nominally invasive, and have a much faster healing time, with much less trauma to sensitive oral tissue.

The Benefits of our Lightwalker Fotona Dental Lasers for oral laser surgery and other procedures Include:

  • A full range of hard- and soft-tissue treatments
  • Extremely precise hard-tissue cutting and ablation
  • Easy and effective endodontic treatments
  • Little or no bleeding surgical procedures, with simultaneous disinfection
  • Easy-to-select operating modes for greater simplicity
  • Greater patient satisfaction and less operator fatigue
  • Excellent training and support for medical staff
  • Do You Need Oral Surgery or Have Sleep Apnea?

Contact our office and we can schedule you for a quick consultation to see if our surgical dental lasers can treat or help remedy your dental, oral, or sleep apnea related problems.

Ceramic Implants; dental restoration gold standard

The Rolls Royce of dental restorations, as close to the real thing as you can get: Ceramic Implants

More Choices than Ever Before

Clients today have a few choices in dentistry when considering types of tooth replacement. From prostheses and bridges to permanent dental implants.  For a culmination of reasons implants head the top of the list in regards to preference by both patient and doctor.  Implants have medical benefits over other standardized tooth replacement choices but they are also practical, durable and much more pleasing aesthetically.

Ceramic Implants-the Gold Standard: Strong

Currently ceramic implants, also known as zirconium or zirconia, are outpacing other options for tooth replacement at an exponential rate.  The material in the implants, Zirconium, in addition to being biologically inert in the human body, and having a high tensile strength (very strong) is considered preferable by many simply because it offers the most real looking tooth replacement option.

Ceramic Implants-the Gold Standard: Beautiful

Since ceramic dental implants can so closely match the look and feel of natural teeth they immediately lend a sense of confidence to the patient. There is no denture to mess with, no embarrassing creams or gels, and no speech issues associated with tooth loss and tooth replacement be it with dentures or other prostheses. There are no restrictions on diet and eating habits, no risk of losing the implant or damaging it while eating. The recipient of a ceramic dental implant also reduces the chance of bone loss in the jaw resulting in the potential of additional dental issues and a diminished jaw-line.

Ceramic Implants-the Gold Standard: Healthy

While the option to use metal implant post, made from titanium, stainless steel or other alloys, for permanent implants can still be performed this option has aesthetic drawbacks.  Metal post were the traditional material used in implants for decades; the aesthetic drawbacks included a sliver-grey color to the artificial tooth.

 Additionally all white ceramic dental implants will not reveal ugly gray lines like in the case of titanium or other metal implants. In instances of metal implants a distinguishable line is typically seen at base of the new tooth. With Ceramic implants even if soft tissue around the tooth recede, over time, there is no dark metallic line visible at the gum line.

Ceramic Implants-the Gold Standard: Natural

Zirconium, or ceramic implants are virtually indistinguishable from real teeth, they do not absorb stains from food or discolor over time. Ceramic implants can last a lifetime and retain their shape and color for the duration. They can be used in the case of one or a few missing teeth or to anchor other prostheses when appropriate.  They support the mouths natural immune system and will not absorb odor, resist plaque and are as easy to maintain as real teeth. They support bone and tissue growth the same way natural bone and teeth do.

Implants are permanent and placing one in such a way that it looks its best and is the most authentic requires a degree of expertise.  The placement of permanent implants is a surgical procedure so choosing a skilled doctor with a high degree of expertise is paramount for the best look and feel of your new teeth.

Ceramic Tooth Implants Are Outpacing Traditional Options

Ceramic Tooth Implants Are Outpacing Traditional Options

Ceramic Tooth Implants Are Outpacing Traditional Titanium Restorations.

Today the average adult, in America, will face the permanent loss of 3 or more adult teeth in their lifetime. That statistic has been cut in half over the last few decades and modern dentistry has been a big catalyst for the improvement.  When an adult tooth is extracted due to injury or decay, the best scenario sees that tooth replaced with a permanent implant, traditionally that has been done with titanium posts.

Restoration services can be performed with a variety of materials. The most common, older versions, were constructed from titanium with a ceramic or other composite ‘cap’ covering the anchor as the replacement “tooth”. With the advent of new materials and new technology titanium and metal implants are gradually becoming old school, being replaced by full ceramic options.

Why Change To Ceramics?

Titanium’s track record shows a long history of strong, resilient wear. Titanium was initially believed to be the perfect material to provide safe, long lasting and strong anchors for tooth restoration. Now, after decades of use, medical information and scientific evidence have uncovered a truth that was unforeseen: Titanium can be toxic when left in the body, it is not inert, corrodes over time, and is not the very effective at promoting tissue regrowth.

Though not all individuals are sensitive to titanium, or metals found in other types of metal implants, the consequences for those who are sensitive can be devastating, potentially life threatening. While the worst reactions remain relatively uncommon, lesser reactions and sensitivities are more common and still of concern.

Ceramics Enter the Dental Community After Years of Use Medically

Enter the full ceramic implant. Ceramic tooth restorations are naturally the whitest and brightest. You will never experience discoloring or the drawback of gum tissues around the base of the ceramic tooth restoration, they are easily the vanity choice. Being the best, most realistic option is nice, but it’s not why they are the new gold standard for dentists everywhere.

For decades the medical community have successfully used ceramics in other parts of the body: Hips, knees, and spine to name a few. The long success of ceramics in surgical implants spelled good news to the dental community. At last an option with more than thirty years of documented success.

Ceramics are bio-inert, making them naturally biocompatible.  Ceramic will not corrode, conduct heat or cold, never discolors, and has virtually the same strength as titanium, the old standard. This benefit has been one of the primary factors in dentists preference in ceramics. The biocompatibility equates to long term success and overall improved bone stability and retention in the jaw. Plus a much better retention, or regeneration of soft tissue or gum tissue to support the nearby surrounding healthy teeth.

Ceramic Restorations Raise the Bar

Ceramic restorations are the most compatible with the body’s immune system. They support healthy bone regrowth in areas damaged from trauma or decay, more so than any other option.  Restorations from ceramics consistently demonstrate improved bone regrowth, even gingival attachment and regrowth.  Since ceramics are so good at promoting hard and soft tissue regrowth it’s of little surprise that they are resistant to corrosion at a much higher standard than their metal counterparts. Ceramics do not absorb into tissues or into the bloodstream and won’t corrode over time. That fact further boosts the desirability of ceramics as a restoration option.

These facts have elevated ceramic tooth restorations to a prime choice for dental practices who put their patients long term health and well being as their number one priority.

If you have questions, would like a consult or are ready to schedule your appointment please contact us.

Slow Poison, Metals in Dentistry

Slow Poison, Metals in Dentistry

Slow Poison

The effects of longterm exposure to metal can begin to poison us over time.

The effects of longterm exposure to metal can begin to poison us over time.

Metals in dental restorations have a potential link to overall health inadequacies. Metals compromise immune systems in sensitive individuals.

Multiple studies correlate metal sensitivities to a battery of autoimmune diseases and several processes that critical in running the bodies delicately balanced endocrine system. Ultimately the thyroid, pancreas, and other critical hormone systems are typically most affected.

All metals (titanium, nickel, steel, silver and other alloys)used in dental procedures, weather for implants or abutments, fillings or dentures, will eventually begin to corrode. As time passes corroding metal particles become ions binding to proteins inside the body’s individual cells. Due to blood vessels creating a perfect transportation system, metal particles can readily travel throughout the body. For some individuals these “foreign invaders” set off a chain reaction within the immune system. As the immune system goes on high alert and begins attacking various parts of the body numerous symptoms arise. Consequently various internal systems may begin to fail.

Symptoms to metal implants vary from patient to patient. Often including an oral burning sensation, general fatigue, skin rashes, a constant dull pain and in some cases, loss of the implant. A paper published in July of 2011 focused on titanium allergy in patients who have undergone an implant, it concluded in part; “This review of the literature indicates that titanium can induce hypersensitivity in susceptible patients and could play a critical role in implant failure.”

Who Cares

What impact, if any, will metals have on you? No one can say for certain. Even petients with existing metal components in their mouth risk that there will be a tipping point. When the level of adsorbed metal becomes more than the immune system will tolerate. Most noteworthy, time plays a factor. As time passes more and more ions can be absorbed so that the effects of metal toxins might not be evident for years.

Great New Options

z-systems zirconia dental implants

ceramics used in dental implants are non-metallic and white throughout

With Zirconium, or all ceramic implants, there is never a risk of being slowly poisoned. Ceramic dental implants do not corrode. They will not absorb or dissolve in any way, as a result, there’s no need to consider long term replacements as they can last a lifetime with the same regular hygiene your natural teeth need.

Call today for a consult and to learn more about your choices and about implants that are customized to benefit your long term health.

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What Came Before the Modern Toothbrush?

Ever have time to ponder the little things in life, like what came before the modern toothbrush?

What came before modern toothbrushes was a lot more rotting teeth!  In fact regardless of fluoride, countries across the globe that employ modern dentistry and routine dental care have all recorded progressively lower rates of decay and tooth loss over the last 100 years.  We have all benefited from the advent of the modern toothbrush.

The toothbrush in your bathroom cabinet is the culmination of not just revision after revision, science and engineering has brought forth the best version ergonomically, hygienically and scientifically to clean and deter further bacterial colonization and plaque build up on your pearly whites.

The First Toothbrushes

Bearing in mind that people have always had teeth, it may not be surprising that we’ve been attempting to keep them clean and healthy for a very long time. The toothbrushes predecessor, the chew stick, have been unearthed in various places around the globe The oldest chew stick, found in Babylonia and dated to 3500 BC, followed by archeological evidence in Egypt dating to about 3000 BC.

Chew Stick or teeth cleaning sticks.

Chew Stick or teeth cleaning sticks.

Chew sticks were a stick that was tapered on one end and frayed on the other end. The soft frayed ends were used to gently clean the surfaces and the pointed end could dislodge debris stuck in the teeth crevices and cracks.  A variety of trees or bushes could be employed to make chew sticks.  Different regions and cultures each, had their own prefered bush or tree, sometimes cinnamon, sassafras or even tea tree and walnut. Well over a dozen different types of trees/bushes with bitter roots were utilized for chew sticks, or teeth cleaning sticks.  The types of trees and bushes typically selected for teeth cleaning or chew sticks have long been known to have antimicrobial benefits that no doubt benefited the user to some degree.

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Toothbrush believed to have belonged to Napoleon

Eventually the chew stick evolved into a bristled brush similar to our more modern toothbrushes. The first of which have been unearthed in ancient China.  The Toothbrush made it’s way across the globe and while the handles varied between bamboo, ivory and bone, the bristles on those first toothbrushes were generally made from horse-tail hairs, boar bristles, even badger fur. By the 1900’s modern handles made from man made materials were the norm and nylon bristles were standard.

 

The Zenith of the Toothbrush

Over the last hundred years or so the toothbrush has changed but is still recognizable from even its earliest versions. The biggest difference in the latest models are those brushes that offer ultrasonic cleaning speeds.  We easily assume that this feature is but a mere gimmick, yet by far, this is the pinnacle of hundreds of years of reinventing and researching oral health. Today’s ultra-sonic toothbrushes–outfitted with a new toothbrush head and properly charged–remove stains, debris and colonies of bacteria both above and below the gumline. Ultrasonic toothbrushes may even contribute in retarding harmful anaerobic bacteria.

As ultrasonic toothbrushes are moved from tooth to tooth they create thousands of teeny-tiny bubbles, some that may be small enough to slip into the tiny space between the teeth and gums. Those little bubble are all it takes to break up the party of nasty anaerobic bacteria hanging out down below the gumline. Anaerobic bacteria can be some of the stinkiest and contribute, extensively, to periodontal disease, gum disease, decay and other oral infection.

By now you’re probably day dreaming about a nice rendezvous with your new, modern, toothbrush!

Contact our office weather you still use a chew stick or even if you have the fanciest, latest version–the ultrasonic toothbrush–we can help you make sure your oral health and your whole health are in alignment.

 

 

Gold Standard: Implants (Tooth Restoration)

Gold Standard: Implants (Tooth Restoration)

Dental Gold Standard in Restoration

The gold standard in dental tooth restoration, no one denies that implants are a dentist first choice in replacing a missing tooth or even multiple teeth. With clear advantages over bridges, dentures and other restoration options, permanent implants offer unparalleled performance with regards to all facets of oral health. Permanent implants support adjacent teeth, living bone, and help maintain proper tooth alignment, inevitably helping to keep the entire mouth health.

In the world of dental implants there are two classes or types of tooth restoration: Metal and non-metal. Implants initially were metal but with the advent of technological breakthroughs, all ceramic implants have proven to be superior in virtually all regards.  All ceramic dental implants are as strong as their metal counterparts, they are bioinert, resistant to bacterial colonies, there’s no chance of conducting hot or cold, and unlike metal ceramic cannot react to radio waves, microwaves, or electricity. Perhaps most comforting is that ceramic dental implants will never corrode, cause dental tattoos, or leach into your circulatory system or tissue.

What Exactly Are Ceramic Implants Made From

Calling implants ceramic may sound as though they are fragile when the fact is, zirconium ceramic is just about as strong as titanium, one of the worlds hardest metals. In fact zirconium, a man made element, is right next to titanium on the periodic table. Titanium is in fact what zirconium, dental ceramics, is made from. Named zirconium dioxide, the material that makes up a ceramic implant is entirely different material than the metal it is derived from.

z-systems zirconia dental implants

ceramics used in dental implants are non-metallic and white throughout

Just as you would not call a fist full of rust “iron” or you would not call salt a metal, but Sodium is a metal. Zirconium dioxide is a crystalline version, chemically owning two additional oxygen molecules than its metal cousin.  Thankfully zirconium dioxide is not rust or salt, just a couple of examples on how intricate and intimate the chemistry world is. Small differences in molecular combinations mean the properties of a material can be drastically different from their purest form.

The Rest Of The Story

Though ceramic may seem like a new technology it literally has been in use for decades. Surgeons, have been using ceramics to repair bones, and joints for close to half a century. Often referred to as bioceramics, ceramics used in medical procedures are a type of “advanced ceramic” specifically engineered to be bio-inert or non reactive to the human body.holistic dentist Houston Texas

Zirconium oxide and the bio-ceramics derived from it are unique. In the dental field full ceramic implants mean no longer settling for an aloy your body may eventually attack or reject. No longer resigned to a smile that looks anything but natural with less risk of fractures and splintering.

We have mastered the art of restoring perfect smiles. We have the expertise, training and equipment to safely give you the best care, the Gold Standard.  Call us today.