Dental Care

Different conditions have different treatment options available, each with its own advantages and disadvantages.
• Tooth pain and decay : fillings, root canal therapy
• Tooth replacements : dentures, bridges, implants, implant supported dentures
• Misaligned teeth: orthodontic treatment for major malalignments, veneers and crowns for minor malalignments
• Misaligned jaws : orthodontic treatment or surgery, or a combination of the two
• Gum diseases : treated by thorough root cleaning, laser dentistry, or flap surgery
• Oral infections and cysts : management and treatment will be advised after thorough diagnosis
• Dental procedures for children are different from the procedures done on adults. Special care needs to be taken for their treatment.
• Developing malalignments and malocclusions can be prevented and intercepted by identifying the cause and starting orthodontic treatment in a timely manner.
A detailed discussion will be had in order to understand the nature of the problem. The doctor will understand the patient’s complaints and their expectations from the treatment. In turn, the doctor will lay out all the treatment options for the particular problem, along with the pros and cons of each option. If necessary, impressions and X rays will be taken, for a proper diagnosis of the condition.
Ideally, a patient should visit once every 6 months however, it can be more often as well.
Depending on oral hygiene, medical conditions, your dentist will recommend to you how often you should visit for a checkup. Smokers, pregnant women, diabetics patient etc. will be required to visit once every 2 months. 
Dental X-rays expose the patients to a small amount of radiation. In case, if you are expecting, it is important to inform your dentist before the treatment is started. The experts use the lead aprons to protect the unborn child from getting exposed to the radiation. 
Dental implants are tapered cylindrical posts of titanium, which are placed in the jaw by the implantologist. They are substitutes for tooth roots that might stimulate the jaw bone and prevent its disintegration after the removal of the natural tooth. The area is allowed to heal for a few months, when the implant will fuse itself to the bone. Thereafter, a small connector is placed on the jaw on which the replacement tooth will be placed. The experts say that the dental implants last for about 40 years. 
Dental implants are placed in adults. Various factors are considered when an implant is suggested as a course of treatment. If you are an adult in reasonably good health, and a single or multiple teeth are missing in your mouth, an implant would be the preferred way to go. However, patients suffering from severe gum or bone diseases are not preferred. 
Invisible braces or lingual braces are placed at the back of the teeth. For the most part, they are not visible to others. These provide maximum aesthetic to the patient, while ensuring a smooth treatment. The invisible braces are fully customized appliances as they are fabricated individually for each patient, based on the impressions and X-rays. Thus, treatment results are far superior to regular braces, and patient comfort is at its best. Invisible braces are absolutely safe, and are now the preferred orthodontic treatment for adults! 
A smile makeover often includes reshaping of the teeth for a more youthful appearance. Small details such as tooth size and shape have a great impact on the smile of a person. Teeth may be lengthened or shortened, broadened or narrowed. Various modes of treatment can be employed to achieve these. A buildup of the tooth/teeth can be done using composite or veneers. Gum reduction may be done to achieve the appearance of increased length of the teeth.
Dental bonding may be done to fill gaps between teeth, repair small chips, and smoothen rough edges. It is called as a bonding because the tooth colored resin material is bonded to the tooth using adhesives and a high intensity curing light. The shade matching with the rest of the teeth is important because it gives a natural look rather than the appearance of white teeth.
Dental crowns are tooth-shaped "caps" placed over teeth. Crowns are usually made of porcelain, or porcelain fused to metal, and restore the tooth's natural shape, contour, and appearance. They form the entire visible portion of the tooth.
Veneers are wafer-thin, custom-made shells of tooth-colored materials, either porcelain or resin, that are bonded to the front surface of teeth.
Recontouring or reshaping removes small amounts of tooth surface to change a tooth's size, shape, surface or length.
Each option has its own advantages and disadvantages and differ in terms of cost, durability, and "chair time." 
People with poorly controlled diabetes are prone to dental diseases. Due to reduced blood supply, gum diseases are more common, causing deterioration of the jaw bone faster. The mouth is dry with plaque accumulation, resulting in gum diseases and tooth decay. Patients should be wary of bleeding gums, sores in the mouth, bad breath and tooth decay. With proper control of diabetes, and regular dental checkups, optimum oral health can be maintained. Please be sure to inform your dentist if you have been diagnosed with diabetes, as changes in your treatment will be made accordingly. Regular flossing and mouthwash rinses are advised to aid brushing twice a day.
Sleep dentistry deals with the management of sleep disorders due to improper breathing. Customized oral appliances are fabricated for the patient in order to aid proper breathing during sleep to improve the quality of sleep. The patient’s habits and lifestyle is monitored and various changes are advised accordingly.

A smile makeover can be achieved in various ways, depending on what the patient requires. These include
a. Tooth colour: Despite having perfectly aligned teeth, stains and discolouration often cause distraction. Your dentist can perform in-office bleaching or teeth whitening, and he/she can pick out a shade of colour, which best matches, your skin complexion. Tooth color and shade is an important consideration for a smile makeover procedure such as porcelain veneers, dental crowns, and composite bonding.

b. Face shape: With aging, wearing down or loss of teeth takes place, which can alter your face shape as well—making you look older. A cosmetic dentist may recommend either orthodontic treatment or oral maxillofacial surgery to fill out your cheeks and face, reviving a more youthful look. This is a part of smile makeover procedures.

c. Missing teeth: Missing teeth or gaps between teeth is not only a hazard to your oral health, but also takes away from the attractiveness of it. As part of the treatment plan to redesign your smile, your dentist will suggest various treatment measures for you to choose from. These may include orthodontic treatment, dental implants, crowns and/or bridges.

d. Alignment: Severely misaligned smiles are best treated by orthodontics, keeping in mind the best treatment results, and health of the teeth. When a smile is severely misaligned, the course of treatment is to re-align all the teeth. Minor misalignments can be treated with composite restorations or veneers, but these need to be done with caution. 

Dental lasers are high intensity beams of light focused in a very small area, used for performing special procedures on the soft tissues of the mouth. They are used to perform a number of painless procedures with least amount of trauma and in a short duration of time. Some other advantages of using a laser, over conventional techniques are: there is minimal loss of blood, rapid healing and minimal post-operative discomfort. These are particularly advantageous to use in prevention and management of gum diseases, and also for removing excessive tissue or reshaping it to look more aesthetically pleasing.
Depending upon the type of procedure being undertaken, various procedures may take 2-3 appointments to complete, excluding first appointment. Each appointment may take 30-60 minutes each. In case of orthodontic treatment, the entire procedure may take 12-15 months for completion of the treatment.
Your dentist will inform you regarding the treatment duration, when discussing various treatment options with you regarding your complaints.
Dental implants are technique sensitive, highly sophisticated devices. Only a credentialed Implantologist is trained to properly place the implant in the jaw, with minimum complications or risk of failure.

There are three options for replacing multiple teeth:
a. Dentures: They are false teeth that are relatively quick and easy to fabricate. These are removable. They can be partial, to replace one or a few missing teeth, or complete, to replace all the teeth in a mouth where they are missing. A denture is a metal or acrylic framework which supports the false teeth. The framework is removable, and is designed to fit around the adjacent teeth.

b. A Bridge uses the natural teeth which lie adjacent to the area of the missing tooth, to support the false tooth/teeth between them. The natural teeth need to be shaped or contoured, in order to fit the bridge over them. A bridge is usually of 3 units, which means that for the replacement of one missing tooth, two of the adjacent teeth will be shaped to hold the bridge.

c. Dental implants are also used to replace natural teeth and are now the preferred line of treatment. Implants are usually composed of two major parts: the implant, which is cylindrical, tapered and titanium posts placed in the jaw to support the crown; and the crown, which is the tooth part visible in the mouth. Implants are excellent options as they look, feel, and function just as natural teeth do.  

Pre-operative instructions include:
• Eating well a few hours before the procedure.
• Plan to eat soft foods for a few days after the procedure
• Wear loose, comfortable clothing to your appointment. Avoid wearing neckties and scarves.
• Do not plan any strenuous activities for 3 days after the procedure.
• Arrange an escort to your appointment to accompany you home.
• In case of any underlying medical condition, inform your dentist during the treatment planning procedure so that medication can be adjusted accordingly.

Post-operative instructions include:
• Some amount of bleeding and swelling is normal in the first hour
• A piece of gauze to be held in position, over the operated area
• Saliva should be swallowed. It should neither be spat nor collected in the mouth as it will hinder in clot formation.
• Food and water to be avoided

In the first 24 hours:
• Avoid solid food
• Reduced physical activity
• Do not brush or rinse your mouth
• Food and water consumed should either be cold or at room temperature. Hot foods must be avoided completely.
• Ice packs may be used externally over the operated area.
• Medication for pain and infection will be advised by the dentist.

After 24 hours:
• Solid food may be started according to the patient’s comfort.
• Warm saline rinses to be done 3-4 times a day.
• Medication to be continued till course ends
• Warm foods and liquids may be consumed
• Hygiene should be maintained; however brushing should be done gently.

Insurance does not cover dental procedures.
General checkups should be done once in 6 months, minimum. Follow-up of a particular procedure depends on the procedure itself. For example, follow up after an extraction is done after 2-3 days, after a month for a Root Canal Treatment, once in 2 months after orthodontic treatment, once in 4 months for a Denture, etc. Your Dentist will advise you regarding the follow-up based on your personal oral hygiene and the procedure undertaken.

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