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Posts for tag: tooth replacement

By George Mui, DDS, Ltd. Gentle Dental Care
January 28, 2020
Category: Oral Health
Tags: tooth replacement  

When you think of tooth replacements, do your grandfather's dentures come to mind? Did they slip or look unnatural? Thankfully, today's dentures and dental implants from Gentle Dental Care in Mount Prospect are completely different. Precision crafted for best performance and appearance, new teeth from Dr. George Mui restore smiles; you'll feel like yourself again.

Why should you replace missing teeth?

Dear Doctor reports the most important reason to replace missing teeth is bone loss. Lose a tooth and lose bone in the jaw. This changes your oral function and facial aesthetic forever.

However, when you plan for tooth replacement with dentures, or optimally, with dental implants, your musculature, bone, and nerves stay strong and work harmoniously toward normal speech, biting, and chewing. Plus, with adequate bone in the jaw, you'll have the bite height to keep your face's youthfulness.

Your tooth replacement options

At Gentle Dental Care in Mount Prospect, Dr. George Mui offers a wide array of tooth replacement choices, crafted from high-quality acrylic, porcelain, and medical-grade metals. His artistic eye and years of experience help him tailor treatment plans that improve oral health and function and also create smiles that boost his patients' confidence.

If you are missing one or more teeth, or know that extractions are forthcoming, Dr. Mui will work with you to complete your smile. Expect a comprehensive dental exam, including digital X-rays and oral impressions. You'll discuss your preferences and what fits your budget.

Here are the kinds of tooth replacements Dr. Mui and his team offer:

  • Dental implants Artificial roots for supporting new crowns, implants fuse to the jaw bone through osseointegration. By reinforcing the jaw bone, implants maintain efficient oral function and youthful facial contours. These titanium devices support crowns for single-tooth replacement or anchor full or partial dentures.
  • Partial removable dentures Clasps or hidden precision attachments affix these appliances to remaining natural teeth. Partials replace one or more teeth, completing a smile the same way a puzzle piece finishes a jigsaw puzzle.
  • Fixed bridgework With this tried and true appliance, one or more replacement teeth are attached to porcelain crowns. The crowns cover natural teeth on both sides of the smile gap. Bridges cannot be removed by the patient.
  • Full immediate dentures These dentures let patients who have lost all their teeth have complete and functional smiles right away. The dentist puts them in following dental extractions and refits or replaces them several weeks later when the gums and bone have healed.
  • Full conventional dentures Used for generations to help completely edentulous people, these upper and lower "plates" stay in the mouth via suction. They are inserted after the extraction sites have healed. Patients experience better fit and function immediately.

What's best for your smile?

Come to Gentle Dental Care in Mount Prospect, and Dr. George Mui will help you answer that question. Get back your smile! Call today for a tooth replacement consultation: (847) 253-5901.

By George Mui, DDS, Ltd. Gentle Dental Care
August 20, 2019
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: tooth replacement  

Roughly 75% of American adults are missing at least one tooth, mostly from disease, trauma or extraction for other dental reasons. A few missing teeth, though, never erupted in the first place.

It’s a rare occurrence, but sometimes people are born without certain teeth, usually back molars or premolars that may not be as visible. Occasionally, though, it’s the more visible upper lateral incisors positioned on either side of the central incisors (the two front teeth on either side of the midline of the face).

Missing incisors can lead to poor bites and create difficulties for speech development and nutrition. But these highly visible (or in this case, “invisible”) teeth can also detract from an otherwise attractive smile.

There are ways, however to correct a smile with missing lateral incisors. Here are 3 of those ways.

Canine substitution. We can fill the vacancy created by the missing incisors by orthodontically moving the canines (the “eyeteeth,” normally next to them) into the space. Braces can close the gap in a conservative way, while possibly correcting any existing bite problems. Because canines are larger than incisors, its often necessary to re-contour them and restore them with a crown, veneer or bonding material to look more natural.

Fixed bridge. A second way to fill the space is with a dental bridge. A bridge consists of a series of crowns fused together in a row. The middle crowns replace the missing teeth; the end crowns cap the natural teeth on either end of the gap, which establishes support for the bridge. Another variation is a cantilever bridge in which only one natural tooth is capped for support. With either type, though, the capped teeth will be permanently reduced in size to accommodate the crowns.

Dental implants. This popular restoration is also a favorite for correcting missing incisors. Implants provide a life-like and durable replacement for missing teeth, while not requiring any alterations to existing teeth as with a bridge. But they are more expensive than the other options, and they require adequate space between the adjacent teeth for insertion, as well as healthy bone for proper placement and anchorage. This is also an option that must wait until the jaw has fully matured in early adulthood.

If you would like more information on treating congenitally missing teeth, 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 “When Permanent Teeth Don't Grow: Treatment Options for Congenitally Missing Lateral Incisors.”

By George Mui, DDS, Ltd. Gentle Dental Care
November 16, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: tooth replacement  

While tooth loss can occur at any age, replacing one in a younger patient requires a different approach than for someone older. It’s actually better to hold off on a permanent restoration like a dental implant if the person is still in their teens.

This is because a teenager’s jaws won’t finish developing until after nineteen or in their early twenties. An implant set in the jawbone before then could end up out of alignment, making it appear out of place — and it also may not function properly. A temporary replacement improves form and function for now and leaves the door open for a permanent solution later.

The two most common choices for teens are a removable partial denture (RPD) or a bonded fixed bridge. RPDs consist of a plastic gum-colored base with an attached prosthetic (false) tooth matching the missing tooth’s type, shape and jaw position. Most dentists recommend an acrylic base for teens for its durability (although they should still be careful biting into something hard).

The fixed bridge option is not similar to one used commonly with adult teeth, as the adult version requires permanent alteration of the teeth on either side of the missing tooth to support the bridge. The version for teens, known as a “bonded” or “Maryland bridge,” uses tiny tabs of dental material bonded to the back of the false tooth with the extended portion then bonded to the back of the adjacent supporting teeth.

While bonded bridges don’t permanently alter healthy teeth, they also can’t withstand the same level of biting forces as a traditional bridge used for adults. The big drawback is if the bonding breaks free a new bonded bridge will likely be necessary with additional cost for the replacement.

The bridge option generally costs more than an RPD, but buys the most time and is most comfortable before installing a permanent restoration. Depending on your teen’s age and your financial ability, you may find it the most ideal — though not every teen is a good candidate. That will depend on how their bite, teeth-grinding habits or the health of surrounding gums might impact the bridge’s stability and durability.

A complete dental exam, then, is the first step toward determining which options are feasible. From there we can discuss the best choice that matches your teen’s long-term health, as well as your finances.

If you would like more information on tooth replacement solutions for younger patients, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation.