Inlays and Onlays: What’s the Difference? | Riverside Dentist

ThinkstockPhotos-512962507Inlays and onlays are the ideal dental restorations needed to repair damaged teeth, not only improving your oral hygiene, but enhancing the look of your smile.  Dental inlays and onlays are used when old fillings need to be removed or replaced. A dental inlay is similar to a filling and fits inside the cusp tips (top edges) of the tooth. A dental onlay is more extensive and extends over the cusps of the treated tooth. Both will rejuvenate your smile! Dr. Middleton can also use inlays and onlays to replace dark, old dental restorations that can look unappealing.

There are two types of inlays and onlays: direct and indirect. Direct inlays and onlays are made in the dental office. They are placed in one visit. Indirect inlays and onlays are made in a laboratory. Two visits are needed to place them. The type your dentist will use depends on how much of the tooth is left.

Direct Inlays and Onlays

Your dentist will remove the decay and shape the tooth. He or she will put a soft material called composite resin on the tooth. The composite resin is molded to fit the tooth. The inlay is removed and hardened in a special oven. Then, your dentist will cement the hardened inlay to your tooth. After the inlay is cemented, it will be polished. Your dentist may have to shape it slightly to adjust the way your teeth come together.

There is also new technology that allows the dentist to have a ceramic inlay or onlay made in the office and cemented on at the same visit.

Indirect Inlays and Onlays

Your dentist will remove the decay. He or she then will make an impression of the prepared tooth and neighboring teeth. The tooth will get a temporary filling. The impression will be sent to a laboratory, which will make the inlay or onlay.

At your second visit, your dentist will take out the temporary filling and clean and dry the tooth. He or she will then cement the inlay or onlay to the tooth. Then it will be polished. Your dentist may have to shape it slightly to adjust the way your teeth come together.

Some dentists have a machine that allows the dentist to take a picture (instead of an impression) of the prepared tooth. Then a computer guides the machine in making a ceramic inlay, onlay or crown. This process can take less than one hour. Your inlay or onlay can then be cemented into place at the same visit.

Inlays and onlays are completely natural looking dental restorations that will restore the strength and stability to your teeth. Dr. Middleton emphasizes that inlays and onlays will make your oral hygiene routines easier! In only two dental visits, your oral health will drastically improve with inlays and onlays.

A dental inlay or onlay is bigger than a filling and smaller than a crown. It is bonded or cemented into place. An inlay is actually similar to a filling, but it lies within the cusps (bumps) on the chewing surface of your tooth. An onlay is larger than an inlay. It replaces one or more decayed cusps.

Inlays or onlays can be made of gold, composite resin (plastic) or ceramics. They can last for 10 years or longer. How long they last depends on:

  • The material used
  • The teeth involved
  • The forces of chewing
  • How well you maintain them with good oral hygiene and regular visits to a dentist

Watch this informative video on Inlays and Onlays:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d5Wu8_MCnJs (Source: YouTube)

Only Dr. Middleton will be able to determine whether or not inlays and onlays will be right for your situation.

For more information about bad breath prevention, call Dr. Gerald Middleton in Riverside, CA at 951-688-3442. Visit our website for special offers, updates and to make an appointment, www.gmdental.com.

Accepting patients from Riverside, Norco, Ontario, Murrieta, Fontana and surrounding communities.

How Old Should My Child Be to Visit the Dentist? | Riverside Dentist

Boy brushing his teethAs a new parent, you are constantly wondering if you’re doing the job right. The last thing you ever want is to have something happen to your child because X, Y, or Z slipped through the proverbial cracks. One of these overlooked details is a child’s dental health. A survey commissioned by the Delta Dental Plans Association revealed that the average age children had their first dental visit was 2.6 years and 34% of children hadn’t seen the dentist at all. Oftentimes, we as parents think our child is too young or doesn’t have enough teeth to make it much of an issue. In actuality, children should start visiting the dentist any time between first tooth and their first birthday. Why, you ask? Well, an early start with a dentist will help alleviate any trepidation they may have about these visits throughout their lives. It can also be beneficial to get some basic knowledge as to how your child’s dental health should be handled at home so that there aren’t problems growing up.
So, what is the first step to getting your munchkin’s oral health in order? First, find a dentist. You can use your personal dentist or look for a pediatric dentist. A pediatric dentist is everything your dentist is, but has a couple more years of school so they are fully-equipped to focus on the specific needs of children. A good rule of thumb to keep in mind when making the appointment? Setting it after your child has a good rest under their belt is ideal; fussiness is at a minimum and they are much more willing to be cooperative.
Once you have made their first dental appointment, the next step is to get your child into the idea of going. There are lot of ways to prepare your little one for this adventure. Learning about what will happen through books and other resources is fantastic help, but it is also great to give them a bit of a preview. Take them next time you have an appointment, or take turns roleplaying what the dentist will be doing poking around in their mouths. Having a dentist poking around with sharp tools is always going to be a scary thing for a tiny human. The more preparation you do, the smoother the experience will be.
On the day of your child’s first visit, expect to have lots of opportunity to ask any questions you may have. The dentist will go over your child’s history and give you a crash course as to what you can expect in upcoming months. A thorough examination of your child’s mouth will be done so the dentist can clearly distinguish any issues that may arise due to habits like thumb sucking, poor hygienic practice or diet. And, if necessary, your dentist or hygienist may clean your child’s teeth if stains are apparent and/or apply fluoride to prevent future cavities. Making sure your little one is comfortable is your first priority so be sure to bring things that soothe them, whether it be a little snack, a favorite toy or blanket. Keeping them happy will ensure you leave that first appointment ready and able to tackle any surprises that may hinder that sweet baby smile you love so much.

Bad Breath and How to Prevent It | Riverside Dentist

young beautiful woman drink coffeeDo you suspect you have bad breath? If so, it might be an indication of other problems and not just a lack of proper oral hygiene. With perpetual bad breath or a bad taste in the mouth may be a warning sign of gum (periodontal) disease. Gum disease is caused by the buildup of plaque on teeth. Bacteria cause the formation of toxins, which irritate the gums. If gum disease continues untreated, it can damage the gums and jawbone.

The medical condition dry mouth (xerostomia) also can cause bad breath. Saliva is necessary to moisten the mouth, neutralize acids produced by plaque, and wash away dead cells that accumulate on the tongue, gums, and cheeks. If not removed, these cells decompose and can cause bad breath. Dry mouth may be a side effect of various medications, salivary gland problems, or continuous breathing through the mouth.

Many other diseases and illnesses may cause bad breath. Here are some to be aware of: respiratory tract infections such as pneumonia or bronchitis, chronic sinus infections, postnasal drip, diabetes, chronic acid reflux, and liver or kidney problems.

But how do you get rid of it? Practice good oral hygiene. Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste to remove food debris and plaque. Brush teeth after you eat (keep a toothbrush at work or school to brush after lunch). Don’t forget to brush the tongue, too. Replace your toothbrush every 2 to 3 months or after an illness. Use floss or an interdental cleaner to remove food particles and plaque between teeth once a day. Dentures should be removed at night and cleaned thoroughly before being placed in your mouth the next morning.

See your dentist regularly — at least twice a year. He or she will conduct an oral exam and professional teeth cleaning and will be able to detect and treat periodontal disease, dry mouth, or other problems that may be the cause of bad mouth odor.

Stop smoking and chewing tobacco-based products. Ask your dentist for tips on kicking the habit.

Drink lots of water. This will keep your mouth moist. Chewing gum (preferably sugarless) or sucking on candy (preferably sugarless) also stimulates the production of saliva, which helps wash away food particles and bacteria. Gums and mints containing xylitol are best.

Keep a log of the foods you eat. If you think they may be causing bad breath, bring the log to your dentist to review. Similarly, make a list of the medications you take. Some drugs may play a role in creating mouth odors.

In most cases, your dentist can treat the cause of bad breath. If your dentist determines that your mouth is healthy and the odor is not of oral origin, you may be referred to your family doctor or to a specialist to determine the odor source and treatment plan. If the odor is due to gum disease, for example, your dentist can either treat the disease or refer you to a periodontist, a dentist who specializes in treating gum conditions.

For more information about bad breath prevention, call Dr. Gerald Middleton in Riverside, CA at 951-688-3442. Visit our website for special offers, updates and to make an appointment, www.gmdental.com.

Accepting patients from Riverside, Norco, Ontario, Murrieta, Fontana and surrounding communities.

How Mouthwash Has Been Lying to Us | Riverside Dentist

toothbrushLet’s face it, some of our favorite foods leave us with some of the worst breath. We enjoy our garlic, onions and coffee, and the state they leave our breath is horrific but completely worth it. Just gargle a little bit of mouthwash & we’re good…right? What if I told you it’s all a myth, that mouthwash isn’t helping you out with bad breath at all? Sorry to have to break the news, but it’s true.

Before I begin, let’s take a quick look at what causes bad breath in the first place. We have bacteria in our mouths, both good and bad. While there are a few medical conditions that can cause bad breath, poor dental hygiene is generally what causes everyday cases of it. If you don’t brush and floss regularly, it is easy for plaque and harmful bacteria to collect and multiply inside of our mouths. That’s where our saliva comes in. We naturally produce saliva to help our mouth maintain a healthy pH balance. We produce saliva, then it breaks up all the built-up bacteria and prevents it from sticking around, giving us bad breath. Couple that with your daily brushing and flossing, and you have a relatively healthy mouth.

Saliva is our natural line of defense against bad breath. Now let’s look at mouthwash. We know for a fact that mouthwash is full of alcohol, some as much as 25 percent. We also know that alcohol dehydrates us. So, by default, mouthwash is also dehydrating. Now, if mouthwash dehydrates us, we are not producing enough saliva. Not enough saliva, our pH balance is thrown off and bacteria is allowed to collect. Mouthwash is actually doing the complete opposite of what we thought!

But what about the claims made by mouthwash ads to “kill bacteria and bad breath chemically”? Well, mouthwash does kill bacteria. It has to with all of that alcohol in it. The problem is, mouthwash cannot distinguish between the harmful bacteria and the bacteria it needs to leave alone because it is actually helping our mouth.

There were once claims that mouthwash could actually replace your daily dental regime. Nothing could be further from the truth. Mouthwash cannot remove plaque. Nothing liquid can remove plaque. It needs to be removed by physically removing it with a toothbrush and floss. If you aren’t doing either of those, the plaque remains on your teeth and the mouthwash cannot get to the bacteria in order to kill it.

So, what do we do when we get a case of bad breath? Forget about mouthwash and use water. Brush and floss a couple times a day, and tongue scrape at least once daily. Your tongue is full of bacteria so a good scraping is pretty necessary. If you are in a jam and don’t have a dental kit around, munching on an apple or a stick of gum will do the trick. Both will help produce saliva. And don’t forget to drink lots of water. Not only is it just good for you and keeping you hydrated, but the more you drink, the more saliva you’re producing. No more bad breath!

If you are in need of a professional cleaning, contact Dr. Gerald Middleton, DDS in Riverside, CA at 951-688-3442 to schedule an appointment today! Or visit www.gmdental.com for additional information.

Dr. Gerald Middleton proudly serves Riverside, Corona, San Bernardino, Redlands, Moreno Valley, Lake Elsinore and all surrounding areas.

How Does The Dentist Clean My Teeth Differently Than I Do?

ThinkstockPhotos-512962507

Regular teeth cleaning is an important of our daily routine. We clean our teeth to make them look good and in so that we can be confident in our smiles. Also, by regularly cleaning our teeth, we prevent oral bacterial infections that lead to complications in other parts of our body, such as the brain, lungs, heart and so on.

Part of what we can do to make sure that our teeth are kept clean at all times is to brush our teeth at least twice a day and floss at least once. Rinsing with mouthwash also helps keep plaque and bacterial buildup in teeth at a minimum.

Another thing that we can do to maintain our oral health all year round is to visit the dentist regularly for professional cleanings twice a day.

Professional cleanings are important because they’re different from the regular teeth cleaning that you already do at home.

How so?

What Makes Professional Dental Cleanings Different

There are two reasons why you’ll want to have your teeth cleaned at the dentist’s office – to prevent tooth loss and to prevent oral infections from infecting other parts of your body.

Professional dental cleanings help remove the buildup of plaque and tartar from teeth, the main cause of gum disease and other oral complications. Even with regular brushing and flossing, your teeth may still be prone to plaque buildup, especially in hard to reach areas.

If neglected, plaque and bacteria may build up in such obscure areas, which may result to the earliest sign of gum disease – bleeding and inflamed gums. If not treated as early as then, the infection may spread out and infect the bone and tissues in your mouth. Although your body’s immune system can fight off the infection, it won’t be able to do so effectively for so long. This is exactly where professional dental cleanings come in.

In a way, professional dental cleanings help level the playing field. It helps remove most of the plaque and tartar responsible for the infection, so that your body’s immune system won’t have to fight them off on its own. This then lowers your mouth’s risk for gum disease. Better yet, regular professional dental cleanings make sure that the oral infection in your mouth does not progress to the point that the damage becomes already irreversible.

What To Expect During The Appointment

Before and during the procedure, the dentist will explain to you the status of your oral health, like why your teeth are sensitive or why your gums are bleeding, and what’s going to be done to help remedy your situation.

If you want, you can ask for an intro-oral camera or a mirror that will allow you to watch the dentist as he or she works. While optional, asking for one can help you gain a better understanding on what’s being done to your teeth.

In some cases, such as when you already have gum disease, your dentist may recommend deep cleaning, or scaling and root planning. This type of treatment is more thorough than a regular dental cleaning. This is type of cleaning is necessary when there are already large amounts of tartar and bacteria under your gums.

Regardless of what cleaning your dentist recommends, you’ll usually be updated on the state of your oral health. Your dentist will probably then take a few minutes to discuss with you on how you can improve your brushing and flossing technique, as well as when you should go back for another appointment.

Listen well to what your dentist says and follow any advice given. If you do that, you should enjoy cleaner and better-looking teeth that will stay that away for a long time.

If you are in need of a professional cleaning, contact Dr. Gerald Middleton, DDS in Riverside, CA at 951-688-3442 to schedule an appointment today! Or visit www.gmdental.com for additional information.

Why Do We Use Toothpaste?

woman brushing teethYou probably already know that the best way to take care of teeth is to brush and floss regularly. Both not only help remove food particles from the teeth, but also protect it from gum disease and tooth decay.

Brushing, however, is only as effective if you actually use toothpaste and believe it or not, some people actually do not use toothpaste. And, speaking of toothpaste, aren’t you wondering why we even use it in the first place?

The Importance of Toothpaste

Plaque is a sticky, harmful bacteria that grow on teeth. If not controlled, plaque buildup can cause a variety of dental problems, such as cavities, gum disease and even tooth loss.

Saliva is the teeth and gum’s first line of defense against plaque, as it washes away all the particles from the teeth. However, saliva alone can’t wash away all the bacteria and this is where brushing with toothpaste and flossing comes in.

The use of toothpaste aids greatly in the removal of plaque and in strengthening the whole tooth structure, making it more resistant to tooth decay. Also, using toothpaste that contains fluoride helps promote remineralization in the teeth. The other ingredients found in toothpaste also help clean and polish teeth, which helps keep teeth looking polished and clean. Lastly, the toothpaste leaves a fresh feeling in your mouth and reduces odor in the mouth, which can do wonders to your confidence.

What Toothpaste To Use

The truth is that it rarely matters what brand of toothpaste you buy. It doesn’t even matter if it’s in paste, gel, or powder form. The only important thing is that the toothpaste you’re using contains fluoride.

The fluoride is the key ingredient that makes toothpastes so effective in fighting plaque and keeping your teeth clean and polished. Although, you’ll want to make sure that the toothpaste brand you’re using bears the seal of approval of an esteemed organization, such as the ADA or American Dental Association. This seal is proof that the product has been tested properly for safety and efficacy in a series of controlled, clinical trials.

If, however, your teeth are sensitive to hot or cold, you may want to use toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth. These toothpastes contain either strontium chloride or potassium nitrate, useful ingredients that desensitize your teeth by blocking the tubes in teeth connected to nerves and providing necessary protection to any exposed dentin.

How Much You Should Use

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to put a lot of gel or paste on your toothbrush for it to be effective. In fact, a pea-sized dab of toothpaste on the top half of your toothbrush is more than enough. Also, make sure that you brush correctly by holding the brush at a 45-degree angle and brush from the inside, outside and then in between your teeth. You’ll know if you’re brushing enough if the paste foams enough to cover your whole teeth.

Brushing with toothpaste and flossing are two of the best things that you can do help remove plaque and food particles from your teeth and gum line. However, you shouldn’t also forget to visit your dentist every six months for dental checkups and professional cleaning.

If you are in need of a routine checkup or professional cleaning, contact Dr. Gerald Middleton, DDS in Riverside, CA at 951-688-3442 to schedule an appointment today! Or visit www.gmdental.com for additional information.

Why Coffee Is So Bad For Your Oral Health

young beautiful woman drink coffee

Coffee is equally as famous for perking people up in the morning or at any time of the day as it is notorious for causing ugly stains on the teeth. Also, the stains aren’t the only problem, as coffee can contribute to tooth and enamel erosion, bad breath, and a number of other dental problems.

How Coffee Stains Teeth

The tooth enamel is considered as the hardest and most mineralized substance of the human body. It is also not flat and smooth, containing a huge number of microscopic pits and ridges that can particles from the many food and beverages we eat and consume.

Normally, the saliva is able to clean these microscopic pits and ridges. This, and the fact that most people do brush their teeth regularly, all but ensure that the tooth enamels remains relatively strong and healthy.

Coffee, however, contains an ingredient called tannins that break down in water. You can also find the same ingredients in other beverages such as wine or tea.  These tannins can cause color compounds to embed on those microscopic cracks and ridges, which with regular consumption, may cause unwanted, yellow and permanent stains on your teeth.

The Other Dangers of Coffee Consumption

Like any other drink that’s not water, coffee can help promote the increased production of acids in your mouth. This can cause tooth and enamel erosion, which can make your teeth thin and brittle and lead to tooth sensitivity. Also, coffee sticks to the tongue and may cause halitosis or better known as bad breath. Although bad breath may also be caused by the caffeine in your coffee that slows down saliva production and dries out your mouth.

The worst part here is that regular coffee consumption can also put you at a higher risk for gum disease. This is because as the coffee erodes the enamel of your teeth, the bacteria in your mouth have exactly what it needs to build up sticky plaque and irritate your gums.

Good News For Coffee Lovers

While coffee isn’t the healthiest beverage that you can expose your teeth to, it’s not exactly the worst. In fact, it is still possible to drink coffee regularly and maintain a white and healthy smile. Although, this won’t come easy.

For starters, you’ll want to stop putting creamer and sugar in your coffee and start getting used to drinking your coffee black. This may not be how you prefer your coffee, but black coffee isn’t as bad for your teeth. Also, despite still being coffee and the much-bitter taste, science has actually proven that drinking black coffee is the healthiest way to drink coffee and enjoy its many health benefits, including healthier and stronger teeth.

Another thing you can do is to make sure that you drink your coffee in just one sitting and brushing your teeth a few minutes after finishing the mug. By doing so, you help prevent bacteria buildup throughout the day.

Make sure to remember to take care of your teeth and at the same, drink coffee in moderation, and you should still be able to enjoy your favorite cup of joe without having to worry about what it does to your oral health.

If you’re suffering from damaged or discolored teeth due to the effects of coffee, contact Dr. Gerald Middleton, DDS in Riverside, CA at 951-688-3442 to schedule a consultation to improve your smile. Or visit www.gmdental.com for information regarding Dr. Gerald Middleton.

Riverside Dentist | Why Are My Child’s Permanent Teeth Coming in Behind The Baby Teeth?

Pediatric DentistryIt’s a petrifying experience, seeing your child’s permanent teeth erupting behind their baby teeth. You’ll worry if it’s normal, and you’ll probably ask if it’s alright for the permanent teeth to erupt that way and yes, that is okay.

While not normal, it is okay for the permanent teeth to erupt before the milk tooth falls out. If this happens, the permanent tooth that’s already erupted will slowly make the roots of the milk teeth weaker, eventually leading them to fall off on their own. Eventually, the permanent tooth will move into the space that was once occupied by the permanent teeth.

As you can see, no harm done.

This occurrence happens mostly in the lower front teeth and in kids who are six years old and is referred to as “lingually erupting mandibular incisors”, or you can simply refer to it as shark teeth. This may also happen to the upper molars, usually in children aged 11.

Why “Shark Teeth” Occurs

There’s not an exact explanation as of yet to explain why shark teeth happens, but it may be because of the following reasons:

  1. It may be because the roots of the baby teeth don’t dissolve normally like the permanent teeth do. This leads to the permanent teeth erupting from behind them because it’s where there’s the least resistance and they can emerge easily.
  2. There’s also the possibility that it occurs because of the overcrowding that takes place in the jaws.
  3. There also dentists that believe that such an occurrence is a deviation and all but ensures that the teeth aren’t going to grow naturally.

Is It a Threat?

Not much really, as around 1 out of 10 kids encounter this sort of problem. Also, since the baby teeth eventually fall in time, there’s little need for professional intervention. However, dentists may have to intervene if the baby teeth do not fall on their own, an occurrence known as “retained baby teeth”.

Consulting a Dentist

It is a good idea to go to the dentist to ask about shark teeth, but it isn’t exactly necessary. Not immediately, that is.

What’s important is that you check your child’s shark teeth and monitor it closely. If the baby teeth fall out on their own, which usually happens after a few days or weeks, then it’s all good and the permanent tooth should slowly shift forward to its properly place.

If, however, the baby teeth do not fall off, you’ll want to take your child to the dentist to see if your child suffers from “retained baby teeth”. Again, it’s not an alarming problem, and the dentist may only have to remove the baby teeth to give the permanent teeth enough space to move forward to its proper place.

In any case, shark teeth aren’t something that you’ll need to worry needlessly about. It also does not ensure that your child’s teeth do not grow naturally. Rather, shark teeth is a simple problem that may resolve on its own or if necessary, with the intervention of your child’s dentist.

If you’re worried about the way your children’s teeth are erupting, contact Dr. Gerald Middleton, DDS in Riverside, CA at 951-688-3442 to schedule a consultation today or visit www.gmdental.com for more information regarding pediatric dentistry.

What Is A Full Mouth Reconstruction? | Quality Dentist in Riverside

177406608Those with severe and multiple dental problems may not only need a single dental treatment, but one that tackles their problems as a “whole” via a full mouth reconstruction.

As the name suggests, full mouth reconstruction is a process where the patient’s mouth undergoes a series of treatment to restore the mouth’s function and structure. Though, in many cases, the mouth’s function, structure, and most especially, esthetics, are actually improved as a result of the procedure.

Who Are Good Candidates For It?

Being a combination of a number of restorative, neuromuscular and cosmetic procedures, a full mouth reconstruction’s goal is to restore and even improve how the look of the patient’s teeth, as well as its structure and overall function. This holistic approach is necessary because each one has a direct effect onto the other.

For example, those with broken teeth may experience problems with their bite. This can make chewing a bit more difficult than usual, which then creates premature wear and tear on your teeth. Eventually, this lead to all sorts of pain, from the head, to the jaw, ears, eyes and even the neck.

There are many other cases where the esthetics of a patient’s teeth, or the lack thereof, have a huge effect on the mouth’s function and structure

Most of the time, a full mouth restoration is recommended for those who have a lot of missing teeth. This is especially true for those who’ve had missing teeth for quite some time. Those who have several discolored, worn out, chipped and broken teeth also make for good candidates for a full mouth restoration.

A full mouth reconstruction may also be necessary for those who’ve been experiencing chronic pain, or a clicking or popping sound in their jaws. Those who’re suffering from frequent headaches and back pain may also benefit from a full mouth reconstruction.

Where To Begin

Each full mouth reconstruction is unique, each engineered to cater to the needs, goals and preferences of the patient.

To know the scope of the full mouth reconstruction, it is best to have your dentist evaluate the overall status of your oral health. This means having your teeth, gums and jaws checked thoroughly. This should help give your dentist a better idea on what type of treatments are necessary or available.

After this, your dentist will be able to discuss with you the different types of treatment available. Your dentist may also take this time to ask you about what goals you have in mind. Be honest and don’t forget to ask about the overall costs of the procedure, as well as what your dental insurance covers. Of course, you should also ask for a timeframe for the whole process, as well as each procedure involved therein.

The discussion should also allow your dentist to know which type of professional they will have to refer you to for the specific care that you’ll need. Though, in many cases, dentists will usually refer their patients to Prosthodontists, or at least consult with them. This is because these dentists have received additional training and education to better handle the complexities that come with a full mouth reconstruction.

Of course, the amount of work involved in a full mouth reconstruction is daunting. This is especially true once you think of the costs involved and how long the treatment takes. Still, you shouldn’t really think too far ahead and instead, worry about taking the initial step, which is to speak with your dentist to see if you’re actually a good candidate for a full mouth reconstruction and if so, what procedures and treatments are involved.

If you’re interested in seeing if you would be an ideal candidate for a full mouth reconstruction, contact Dr. Gerald Middleton, DDS in Riverside, CA at 951-688-3442 to schedule a consultation today. Or visit www.gmdental.com for additional information regarding full mouth reconstructions.

Braces Make Beautiful Faces: Braces vs. Invisalign | Dentist Riverside CA

invisible braces

Crooked teeth. In this superficial day and age, having crooked teeth is more of an issue than it really should be. As an adolescent, you get teased and may not get a lot of dates, so it can turn out to be a tough road to travel when compounded with the typical growing pains. As an adult, having crooked teeth still has a certain stigma but it isn’t quite as traumatizing as those adolescent years. After dealing with crooked teeth for so long, fixing them now is more of a cosmetic choice over a necessity. But no matter who is in need of a perfect set of pearly whites, there are a few options on the market you can go with. The problem is…Which is the better choice to fix those funky fangs, tried-and-true braces or the inconspicuous Invisalign?

The first, and most obvious option, is to go with good ol’ braces. They have the most history of success, are affordable, and are kind of a rite of passage for a teenager. And while they were typically silver metal back in the day, they can now come in a ceramic that makes them a whole lot less noticeable. Or, if you’re in that sort of thing, there are colors you can choose from to create a custom look. On the downside, you still have to get them tightened every month or so and broken pieces are pretty painful. But you can be guaranteed a gorgeous smile as a result.

Since 1998, there has been an aesthetic alternative to the typical tooth-straightening option. Invisalign are transparent tooth aligners that have taken the orthodontic world by storm. The idea is that this system can now straighten your teeth without wires and glued brackets, which to be honest, sounds like a miracle. I mean it’s clear, it’s removable and the treatment time is generally a third of what wearing traditional braces would be. The downside to this is that they are more expensive and it takes a lot more discipline to maintain the strict regimen of wearing the aligners 22 hours/day and the additional steps it takes to clean the system’s trays.

So, which do you choose? Well, it honestly depends on your personal situation. An orthodontic consultation is definitely in order and a treatment program will be based on those results. Because despite what you may hope, not all cases are suitable for either option. While they are fantastic at what they do, the Invisalign system is perfect for minimal to medium dental issues but does not work as well for major ones. Patients with bridgework, certain bite issues or rotational needs are just out of luck. Those issues may be no match for Invisalign but are right up traditional braces alley. Alternatively, traditional braces are not ideal for those that lead a rough and tumble life or have a job that doesn’t allow regular braces. In that instance, you may want to consider the Invisalign system or lingual braces (braces attached to the insides of your teeth) to straighten things out.

Regardless, any of these options are sure to help correct those meandering molars…It just depends on which one your orthodontist believes is the best option for you. They are the professionals and know what is best for you. Either way, it will take a while for them to fix the problem but rest assured the process will only be temporary. Soon you will have nothing but the prettiest pearly whites in your mouth. And that’s enough to make anyone smile, right? Congrats on your soon-to-be killer smile!

If you’re seeking treatment to straighten your pearly whites, contact Dr. Gerald Middleton, DDS in Riverside, CA at 951-688-3442 to schedule a consultation today or visit www.gmdental.com.