GENERAL DENTAL CARE
As general dental care providers in Beverly Hills, CA, we serve patients of all ages. That means we can treat everyone in your family while handling a wide range of issues. We have the experience and education to tailor your dentistry experience to your personal needs, regardless of your specific oral health concerns.
Below, we’ve assembled a list of some of the questions we hear on a regular basis. We want you to feel comfortable about making us your general dental care providers, and so have done our best to answer these questions as thoroughly as possible. Have more questions? Call us today at our Beverly Hills, CA, dental office at (310) 652-2360.
We only really need to extract teeth when they have problems we can’t fix. This means that the entire tooth has been compromised, or that a fracture has damaged the root of the tooth.
Sometimes a cavity can become so big that it infects the nerve inside of the tooth. This causes pain and swelling, and you’ll need a root canal to fix it. First, we give you a numbing agent so that you don’t feel any pain. Then, we remove the decayed portion of the tooth and clean out the infected nerve. We then use a material called “gutta percha” to fill the space where the nerve used to be in order to keep bacteria from attacking the tooth again. You’ll usually need a crown after a root canal, as the tooth usually loses a lot of strength.
We use bridges to replace missing teeth. Healthy teeth must be present on both sides of the open space. We place crowns on each of these teeth, which holds a third crown in place, closing the gap.
If you have a lot of lost teeth you will generally need dentures instead. Full dentures replace all of the teeth, and partial dentures replace only a few teeth. We can combine dentures with dental implants so you get better stability when talking and eating.
We use crowns (or “caps”) to restore your tooth’s form and function when a filling is insufficient to restore the damage from either decay or a fracture. We shape the affected tooth to hold the crown, which will completely cover the exterior of the tooth. Your tooth will look and feel as good as new by the time we’re done.
First, we remove any decayed matter inside of your tooth, until only the healthy tooth is left. Next, we add a series of bonding agents to your tooth so that the filling will actually stick. We then place white, tooth-colored fillings known as composite fillings inside of your tooth. This restores the shape of your tooth and stops the decay in its tracks. We cure the composite with ultra-violet light to harden it. Finally, we shape it and polish it, which restores the tooth’s natural look and feel.
A deep cleaning is required when a patient’s gums are unhealthy. This usually results in bone loss around the teeth, which causes “pockets.” A deeper pocket really endangers the tooth, so it’s important to handle the situation right away. We use the scaling and root planning technique to remove bacteria and tartar that has settled underneath the gums.
We never perform unnecessary work. We are medical professionals, just like your doctor is. We give you an honest assessment of what’s going on in your mouth. We’ll do our best to keep you informed with CariVu images, intra-oral pictures, x-rays, and explanations on why we are recommending treatment.
Ultimately, you are in control of whether you receive treatment or not. It is simply our ethical duty to report our findings and to present options for treatment. We welcome any questions that you may have. We want you to feel confident that you have all of the information you need to make an informed decision.
Our number one question! But in general, dental work does not hurt. In fact, we make sure to numb the area we’re working on so that you don’t feel any pain during your procedure. We also use a special desensitizing agent underneath all of our fillings, crowns, and veneers, which reduces post-operative pain. Some patients do experience very minor temperature sensitivities and biting sensitivities for a few days after some procedures. This is completely normal. You can easily relieve this pain by using an over-the-counter pain reliever and rinsing with warm salt water.
There are lots of different reasons why a tooth might need dental work. Cavities are the most common problem. Cavities happen when bacteria eats away a portion of the tooth. The tooth then becomes soft, and infected. The area must be cleaned and filled right away to prevent further damage.
We also see a lot of fractures or cracks. These can happen when the tooth suffers from some sort of trauma (such as being smacked by a baseball), but it can also happen when a patient chews on ice, or something hard.
Finally, we also see cases of extreme wear, especially in patients who grind their teeth, or who suffer from acid reflux disease and thus from tooth erosion.
Most patients only go to the dentist when they feel pain. However, a lack of pain does not mean a lack of dental issues! Some dental issues can cause damage for quite some time before they actually hurt.
We recommend you receive a professional cleaning and check-up every 3-4 months. This is the easiest, best, and least expensive way to ensure that your mouth remains healthy and strong.