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When people think of cosmetic dentistry they might think of Hollywood style makeovers. These makeovers, while great, do not work for every individual’s needs. The beauty

Minimum Dentistry Marielaina Perrone DDS

Simple Cosmetic Dentistry Fixes For That Perfect Smile!

of cosmetic dentistry is that it can oftentimes show major results with minimum work. It takes an experienced cosmetic dentist to be able to see that a small change may be all that is necessary for a patient to fulfill their needs and wants.

What Is Minimum Dentistry?

Minimum dentistry encompasses all the possible treatment options available in cosmetic dentistry but just on a smaller scale. It means, to be as efficient and conservative as possible with time, treatment,tooth strcuture, and money to gain maximum results with the resources we have available.

Which cosmetic dentistry procedures are available for minimum dentistry?

Tooth Reshaping (also called tooth re-contouring, or enameloplasty) – This simple, effective minimum dentistry procedure allows your cosmetic dentist to reshape your teeth very minimally to change length, width, or thickness. This is very effective for teeth with varying lengths or ones that are slightly out of line with each other. This will not work in cases of more severe misalignments as you run the risk of removing too much tooth structure causing sensitivity teeth.

Teeth Whitening – A minimum dentistry procedure, that can whiten your teeth in as little as an hour. There are various types of teeth whitening available. These include in office teeth whitening (done in as little as an hour), at home teeth whitening (completed over a period of 2 weeks or so). There are also over the counter methods of teeth whitening available. Each technique has its advantages and disadvantages. The most efficient method is in office whitening but it is also the most expensive.

Dental Bonding – Another minimum dentistry procedure that can be completed in under an hour that can dramatically change a smile. A chipped tooth or a gap can make your smile look less attractive. Dental bonding can close that gap and restore a chipped tooth to its natural appearance.

Inlays and Onlays – Inlays and onlays require minimal removal of healthy tooth structure when compared to dental crowns. These are usually made of porcelain to make the final restoration as cosmetic as possible. Removal of healthy tooth structure increases the risks of both tooth fracture and the possible need for root canal therapy after the crown is completed. The inlay or onlay can serve a wonderful purpose, by preserving tooth structure, as well as being a more cost effective option to a full porcelain crown.

Lumineers – This is truly a minimum dentistry procedure. This requires little to no tooth preparation. The trade off is, that the final product can often look bulky and out of place. For that reason most skilled cosmetic dentists reject this procedure.

Snap On Smile – Another cosmetic minimum dentistry procedure that requires no tooth preparation. It is literally as the name suggests…a new smile you snap on over your existing teeth. For many patients this is the answer for special events like a wedding, job interviews, etc. Snap on smile is especially useful when major dental work would be required to alter the smile properly.

Ginival recontouring – Also called a gum lift or gingivoplasty. This procedure removes a bit of gum tissue to allow short teeth to appear longer, to decrease a gummy smile, and to even out the gum line.

Minimum Dentistry Conclusion

Cosmetic dentistry procedures do not have to cost a fortune and require a lot of time in the dentist’s office. Minor changes to a smile can bring dramatic results. The ultimate goal of any cosmetic dentistry procedure is to meet the patients goals and to create a functional final result. Minimum dentistry allows for everyone to be able to enjoy the benefits of cosmetic dentistry especially with a limited budget of time and money.

Bruxism (also called teeth grinding) – is the habitual, involuntary grinding or clenching of your teeth, usually during sleep, but can also occur during the day. The cause of Bruxism Marielaina Perrone DDSbruxism is unknown but it is often associated with anger, tension, fear, frustration, and stress.

Many people go through periods in their lives where they grind their teeth or clench them from time to time. Bruxism generally does not cause any long term damage when done occasionally. If the problem persists, over time there will be long term damage to the teeth and surrounding tissues in the mouth.

When Does Bruxism Occur?

Bruxism generally occurs during sleep, most people are unaware that they are even grinding or clenching their teeth unless they are told so by their partner or by their dentist . There are signs that should give you pause to think that you may be a bruxer. Usually it is a loved one that notices the grinding as it awakens them at night. Another sign is a dull, constant headache or sore jaw when waking in the morning. Cracked, chipped teeth, and wear facets may be noticed by your dentist. Continuous teeth grinding will lead to dental issues, which can result in  fracturing, loosening, or loss of teeth. Habitual teeth grinding will wear the teeth down, remove the cusps on the teeth,and essentially flatten them. When these issues happen, bridges, crowns, root canal therapy, dental implants, partial dentures, and even complete dentures may be needed. Bruxism can also lead to Temperomandibular Joint Disorder, hearing loss, and even change the appearance of your face.

Treatment Options For Bruxism?

Unfortunately, there is no cure for bruxism. The only way to truly get it under control is to learn to manage stress in our lives better. So what can a dentist do to help? Luckily, dentistry has developed some techniques to protect our teeth from bruxism.

Treatment options include:

-Fabrication of a Custom Mouth Guard. This will act as buffer to protect your teeth during sleep. It does not necessarily cause the bruxism habit to stop, but does protect the teeth from damage.

-Prescription for Muscle Relaxants. This can allow relief from tight muscles surrounding the face.

Other tips to help you stop bruxism include:

-Avoid or cut back on foods and drinks that contain caffeine.

-Avoid alcohol. Grinding tends to intensify after alcohol consumption.

Bruxism Marielaina Perrone DDS

-Do not chew on pencils or pens. Avoid chewing gum as it allows your jaw muscles to get more used to clenching and makes you even more likely to grind your teeth.

-Attempt to train yourself not to clench or grind your teeth. If you notice that you clench or grind during the day, re-position the tip of your tongue between your teeth, or wear a daytime soft guard on your lower teeth. This practice trains your jaw muscles to relax and also is a mental cue for the brain to stop grinding your teeth.

-Relax your jaw muscles at night by holding a warm wash cloth against your face in front of your earlobe.

New Treatment Option For Bruxism

In the past, once damage from bruxism reached the point of needing a full coverage dental crown both dentist and patient understood the treatment would see limited success. This is because of the strength of traditional porcelain crowns or porcelain fused to metal crowns was not up to the task of dealing with the extra forces over the long haul. Recent technology advances in dental materials have allowed the development of a new type of crown called the BruxZir crown.

BruxZir Solid Zirconia is a monolithic solid zirconia restoration with no porcelain overlay. This type of crown when used in patients with bruxism offers a long term restoration built to last. It is virtually chip proof, making it an ideal restoration for patients with bruxism. BruxZir crowns can even be used over a dental implant.

Bruxism Conclusion

Bruxism can be a terrible habit with the develoment of long term issues. While no known cure exists, dental materials advancement has allowed the dentist to maintain the health of your teeth under the extreme pressures and forces of bruxism. Visit your dentist regularly so bruxism can be diagnosed as early as possible to ward off potential issues.