Prosthodontic Dentistry of Washington, DC

What Exactly is a Dental Implant?

what exactly is a dental implant

Missing teeth? No problem. A dental implant is a way to replace an empty void that may be leaving you self-conscious about your smile. Whether the vacant spot is due to a sports injury, facial trauma, periodontal complication, or bad oral hygiene, it can fill the vacancy permanently and give you a boost of confidence. So, what exactly is a dental implant? Here are a few things you need to know:

• Dental implants act as a replacement for the roots of a tooth. Metaphorically speaking, they can be the anchor for crowns, bridges and dentures and are screwed into the jaw bone to provide support for replacement teeth. They are surgically inserted into the jawbone beneath the gum line.

• Dental implants resemble the shape of screws and once placed into the jawbone, will naturally bond with your natural bone to provide a strong base for artificial teeth.

• Dental implant surgery is one of the safest procedures done in dentistry.

• Dental implants will be the next best thing you’ll have to healthy and natural teeth.

• A dental implant is dependent on the oral health of the person undergoing treatment. There needs to be healthy tissue in the mouth and enough jaw bone to support these dental implants.

• After undergoing a dental implant procedure, keeping the structures healthy and clean should be done precisely and with attention to detail. This will help to maintain and ensure the long-term success of the treatment and the oral health of your mouth.

Don’t let a missing tooth or teeth stop you from living a full life without limits. Laugh and smile, indulge in foods without restriction, and most importantly, feel comfortable in your own skin. Call our office Prosthetic Dentistry of Washington D.C. Phone Number 202-244-2101 to find out how a dental implant can be beneficial to you and the overall health of your teeth. What have you got to lose? Call us today!

All There is to Know About Veneers

all you need to know about veneers

If you are looking for a way to spruce up your smile, veneers might be for you. Veneers are typically made from composite resin or porcelain, and then bonded to a natural tooth. Read on for some frequently asked questions about how veneers can change the look of your smile.

Why do people get veneers?

There are many reasons as to why someone chooses to have veneers. Often people choose to have veneers due to being unhappy with their current smile. Worn, chipped, stained, or cracked teeth are all candidates for veneers.

How long do veneers last?

Veneers can last over a decade if they are well taken care of. However, depending on the type of wear that you have on your veneers, they may need to be replaced sooner.

To make your veneers last longer, practice excellent oral hygiene and protect your teeth when you can. Brushing, flossing, and avoiding excessive teeth grinding will allow your veneers to last longer.

If the veneers become worn or chipped, the veneer will need repaired or replaced.

Will you be able to tell that I have veneers?

Your dentist will take special care to ensure that your veneers match your existing teeth. The veneers will be color matched to your surrounding teeth, making them look like your natural teeth.

How much do veneers cost?

Depending on the type of veneer and how many veneers you would like, the price will differ. Contact our office to learn more about veneers pricing and payment plans.

If you are ready to take your smile to the next step or have any additional questions, contact our office to schedule a cosmetic dental consultation. Prosthetic Dentistry of Washington D.C. Phone Number 202-244-2101

How to Properly Floss

how to floss

Flossing. We know how much you hate it. But do you know how important it really is? By not flossing at least once per day, you’re putting yourself in danger of gingivitis and cavities between your teeth. Flossing allows you to remove dental plaque buildup, which if not removed, can irritate the gum tissue, causing it to become red and bleed, eventually becoming gingivitis. Untreated gingivitis can then lead to Periodontitis, causing our gums to heavily recede as the bacteria continues to move towards the root of our teeth.

Luckily, the American Dental Hygienists Association has developed a simple way for you to properly floss your teeth using four simple steps.

Step 1: Take an 18-24 inch strand of floss and wrap it around your two middle fingers. Although this may sound like a lot of floss, it’s important for it to be long so you are able to keep a clean strand steadily in place as you move from tooth to tooth.

Step 2: It’s recommended that you keep a solid 1-2inch length of floss between your fingers. You can then use your index fingers to guide the floss between your lower set of teeth.

Step 3: Guide the strand of floss between your teeth using a zig zag motion. Be cautious not to allow the floss to snap between the teeth.

Step 4: Finally, slide the floss up and down against the surface of the tooth and directly underneath the gumline. You should then floss each tooth efficiently, using a clean section of the strand.

And just like that, you’re a flossing pro!

Again, we want to emphasize how important flossing is in regards to your overall oral health. It truly is essential for ensuring your gums are not only healthy, but happy too. If you have any questions about flossing or your periodontal health, please feel free to contact our office at 202-244-2101.

Common Dental Implant Myths

common dental implant myths

Insecure about a missing tooth? Don’t be. With dental implants, you can get your smile back to looking perfect. For many, dental implants provide the feeling of having their natural teeth back again. This is because instead of being a removable type of device, such as a dental flipper, dental implants are permanently embedded into the jaw, which then allows a dental crown to take the place of the missing tooth. We understand that this procedure may seem intimidating, but we’re here to reassure you it’s not as bad as it sounds. Below are the top three common misconceptions when it comes to getting dental implants.

Myth #1: Dental Implants are painful

This is a common fear. Many people hold back from pursuing a dental implant, simply because they’re afraid the procedure might be too painful. However, this is not true. The procedure itself is pain-free. As always after surgery, there may be some temporary discomfort, but your doctor will work very closely with you to ensure your comfort and ease.

Myth #2: Dental Implants are expensive

Although dental implants aren’t cheap, they’re a much better investment than dental bridges, which need replacing every 7-15 years. Dental Implants cost may be high initially, but it’s a better financial decision in the long run.

Myth #3: Dental Implants cause headaches

It’s a fairly common myth that dental implants can cause migraines or headaches. However, we’re here to let you know that this is not true. There is absolutely no scientific evidence to support this. After the dental implant has successfully bonded with the jaw/gums, you should experience zero pain.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding dental implants, give our office a call at 202-244-2101 so we can discuss the next steps.

Myths About Teeth Whitening

myths about teeth whitening

Everyone wants to have a whiter smile, but making the decision to pursue whitening treatment can be tough. Myths and stereotypes can lead to negative connotations, inhibiting you from moving forward with treatment. Below are three misconceptions about teeth whitening:

Teeth whitening treatments at my doctor’s office are no more effective than those purchased at drugstores.
On the contrary, the maximum strength bleach that our dentists provide delivers the best and fastest teeth whitening results. Another factor that makes dentist-provided whitening kits most effective is the fact that the trays are customized to fit each individual patient perfectly which keeps the gel in closer, more precise contact with your teeth. Don’t waste your time at the drugstore when you can get a brighter, whiter smile from us in record time!

Tooth whitening harms enamel.
Despite this negative misconception, teeth whitening does not actually harm the enamel of a tooth. Bleaching works by opening the pores of a tooth. This allows for the peroxide to enter the inner structure of the tooth and remove stains. The pores will close again over time, leaving the enamel unharmed.

You can never drink coffee or wine again after whitening.
While patients are told to stay away from heavy staining and acidic foods, such as red wine and coffee, it’s not forever! Dentists recommend this just for the first few days after treatment because the pores in your teeth remain open and the chemical reaction takes place over the course of a few days.

Whitening treatments can be intimidating, especially if you are not properly informed. It’s important to know the facts when making decisions about your teeth. If you have any questions about teeth whitening, contact our office today at 202-244-2101

Facts About Bone Grafting

know the facts

Modern bone grafts can be used to fix a number of dental and facial issues and are often required. Dental implants often cannot be placed without first getting a bone graft. If you are considering getting dental implants or think you’re in need of a bone graft, here are some things you may want to know!

Bone grafting is a routine procedure!

Over the years, bone grafting has become a standard and highly-practiced procedure. The procedure is typically performed in the office, depending on each individual case and a local anesthesia or conscience sedation is available if needed in order to block the pain and calm any anxiety you may be feeling!

A number of materials can be used!

The bone grafting material that we use may come from a variety of sources. If we are able, we generally like to use bone from your own body, which decreases the chance of your body rejecting the graft. If possible, we will take this bone from your hip, jaw, or lower knee. If this is not an option, we are able to obtain bone from a tissue bank.

Bone grafting allows for your body to rebuild itself!

Your body will use your new bone graft as a sort of frame to grow new bone. Over time, the graft will be replaced with new bone that your body has grown during its own regeneration process. Keeping a healthy amount of bone tissue around your teeth is crucial in maintaining great oral health.

If you are in need of a dental implant, have a congenital defect, or have suffered a traumatic facial injury, and you’re wondering if you might need a bone graft, give our practice a call! We can assess your case, answer your questions and come up with the best possible treatment option for you! Prosthetic Dentistry of Washington D.C. Phone Number 202-244-2101

5 Tips for Jaw Surgery Recovery

recovery tips

Orthognathic surgery, also known as “jaw surgery”, is used to correctly align an improper bite or jaw position. If you are thinking of undergoing jaw surgery, here are a few tips to help you with your recovery.

  1. Get Plenty of Rest
    A key to helping your body recover is to rest as much as you can. Find things to keep you entertained as you take it easy such as coloring, reading, or a new TV show. Keeping yourself entertained will help the time to pass faster.
  2. Stay on a Regular Schedule
    While resting is important, staying on a regular schedule will help you feel productive while you recover. As you begin to feel mobile, take short walks outside.
  3. Apply Heat and Ice
    Applying heat and ice regularly will help to combat facial swelling and reduce your discomfort. You will be the most swollen during your first week of recovery. Keep an extra ice pack in the freezer so you always have one ready to go.
  4. Meal Prepping
    Meal prepping before your procedure will help you in the long run. During recovery, you may not feel like cooking. Having pre-planned meals will let you easily prepare nutritious meals with minimal effort. Some great meal ideas to prepare ahead of time are smoothies, soups and homemade juices.
  5. Stay Hydrated
    Drinking enough water is important for allowing your body to heal and for avoiding dehydration. You might have to remind yourself to drink water so keep a water bottle handy and sip throughout the day.

Corrective jaw surgery recovery can seem like a long process, but once your jaw has healed, you will have a more healthy, attractive and functional jaw. If you believe that you would be a good candidate for jaw surgery, contact our office for a consultation at Prosthetic Dentistry of Washington D.C. Phone Number 202-244-2101.

5 Reasons You Shouldn’t Wait For Your Dental Implant

the sooner, the better

You need a dental implant, but you are reluctant to get started. We understand that there is some hesitation and life gets in the way. However, here are a list of reasons as to why you shouldn’t wait.

  1. Stop your remaining teeth from moving. Your teeth help keep everything in place. When you are missing a tooth, and have a gap, your teeth will start to shift to fill in that gap. That could cause not only uneven teeth, but teeth that are harder to clean and, in the end, that cost you more to fix.
  2. Save Your Jawbone. When you are missing a tooth, your jawbone slowing starts to deteriorate and shrink away. The roots of your teeth keep the jawbone stimulated to maintain the bone mass. The longer you are missing the tooth, the more the bone will disintegrate, making the implant process more difficult.
  3. The appearance of your face. Living without a tooth can eventually change how you look, especially if you suffer from bone deterioration. The longer you go, your skin could begin to make your cheeks sag, which will make you look older than you are.
  4. The way you speak. When you are missing a tooth, it could make it hard to annunciate words, making you sound like you have a lisp.
  5. Your overall self-esteem. Getting a dental implant will allow you to feel like your normal self. You won’t have to worry about how you look or how you sound. The implant looks and feels like a normal tooth. No one will know that you have an implant unless you tell them.

These are just a few reasons as to why you should wait to get your dental implant. If you are experiencing any hesitations or have further questions, contact our office. We are happy to ease your mind and get you on track to a beautiful smile. Prosthetic Dentistry of Washington D.C. Phone Number 202-244-2101

What You Should Know About Dental Implants

woman getting fit for dental implantsIf you are looking for an alternative to dentures and would like to replace your missing teeth, dental implants may be for you. Dental implants are a popular long-term method for restoring your smile. Many people decide to get dental implants after they have experienced loss of teeth due to variety of reasons. Dental implants give you back your freedom from missing teeth.

Who gets dental implants?

Those who are in overall good health and are looking for a long-term solution for their missing teeth are candidates for dental implants. This includes those who are tired of dentures and are looking for a more comfortable and convenient alternative.

What are the advantages of dental implants?

There are many advantages of getting dental implants, including:

  • Convenience: dental implants are a long-term option for replacing missing teeth. They have the added benefit of being a permanent fixture in your mouth unlike dentures that can be abrasive to the gums and can cause difficulty speaking.
  • Easier eating: you may have found that eating has become more difficult with missing teeth. A dental implant allows for more efficient chewing and will allow you to enjoy your favorite foods once again.
  • Improved appearance: Dental implants look and feel like real teeth. They can be designed with the same color and shape as your surrounding teeth, making them natural looking
  • Confidence: Dental implants can give you a youthful appearance and increased self-esteem. You may find yourself smiling more than ever with your new implants.

How do I care for my dental implant?

The great thing about dental implants is that they require the same care as real teeth. This means regular brushing, flossing and routine dental checkups. If taken care of properly, your new implant can last you a lifetime!

If you are interested in dental implants, contact Prosthetic Dentistry of Washington D.C. at Prosthetic Dentistry of Washington D.C. Phone Number 202-244-2101 to set up a dental implant consultation.

5 Tips for a Healthier Smile

woman smiling holding fruit slicesSometimes we skip a tooth brushing every now and then, which may seem like no big deal. While, in the grand scheme of things, it may seem like missing a tooth brushing here in there isn’t the end of the world, it may lead to unhealthy dental habits, which eventually could result in serious dental damage! By adopting healthy, regular dental habits, you can lower your chance of tooth decay and cavities. Here are some helpful tips towards a healthy, happier smile!

Brush and Floss Regularly:

You should brush your teeth twice daily with fluoride toothpaste and floss once. If you want to have impeccable oral hygiene, you may also brush your teeth after each meal or snack. If brushing isn’t a post-meal option for you, thoroughly rinsing your mouth with water will help as well.

Use Mouthwash:

Using mouthwash twice a day after brushing is a great way wash away leftover bacteria and give your mouth that super clean feel.

Eat Tooth-healthy Foods:

Believe it or not, there are certain foods that are good for your teeth and will help to strengthen them and fight against bacteria and plaque build-up. Some foods that will benefit your dental health include but are not limited to: fresh fruits and vegetables, cheese, unsweetened coffee, tea, and sugar-free gum.

Make Routine Dental Visits:

Professional teeth cleanings and dental check-ups should be scheduled for every six months. If you have a history of dental issues, or if you know you need special attention, visiting your dentist more often than every six months may be best for you.

Consider Dental Sealants:

During your next dental visit, ask about dental sealants. Dental sealants will seal up small grooves and nooks in your teeth, preventing bacteria build-up in those hard to reach places. They can also help prevent tooth decay and can last up to ten years with proper dental care!

If you have any questions about your oral health, please give us a call at Prosthetic Dentistry of Washington D.C. Phone Number 202-244-2101.