Dental | Q & A in Stockton

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Vincent Gotamco, DMD

3453 Brookside Rd. Suite B
Stockton, CA  95219

Tel: (209) 473-8884
Fax: (209) 473-8886


Q & A

Why are my teeth sensitive?

Sensitive teeth often come from the fact that your gums have receded. This recession of the gum line exposes the root. The roots are more porous and since there is no enamel protecting them liquids especially cold and food have easier access to the sensitive nerve. To manage this, there are a number of toothpastes, gels and even some dental procedures that can be done or applied. Speak to us in more detail if you have very sensitive teeth.

What should I do to prevent gum disease and tooth decay?

Great tooth and gum care starts at home. Brushing and flossing on a daily basis is the best way to take care of your teeth and gums on a continual basis.   By keeping to a daily routine you will greatly minimize the risk of gingivitis or tooth decay. Regular check ups and xrays help identify problems before they get worse.

What is Gingivitis?

Gingivitis is a condition caused when bacteria surrounds the teeth and enters the gums.  The gums can become irritated, inflamed and often bleed.  In order to prevent the condition from worsening, regular hygiene visits are highly recommended.  During your visit, our Hygiene team will teach you the proper flossing techniques and oral hygiene protocol for home care.

What is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal Disease is a quiet disease that begins with little or no symptoms.  It is caused by bacteria that affects the deeper supporting structures of the teeth. Delayed treatment will cause bone loss. Untreated periodontal disease will cause tooth loss.  Noticeable symptoms now appear.  They include but not limited to:

  • Bad Breath
  • Tender gums
  • More pronounced bleeding of the gums
  • Abscesses
  • Tooth Pain
  • Loose Tooth

    
How Do You Treat Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease is a chronic condition that needs immediate attention.  Through a series of periodontal cleanings, root planing & scaling, laser therapy and local antibiotics, this condition can be controlled. To save teeth, periodontal surgery is necessary for severe cases.

What is the Difference Between a White and Silver Filling?

Silver fillings, known as amalgam, have been around for around 150 years.  They are made from a metal alloy mixed with mercury and were, for a long time, the best restoration for fillings. They are durable and economical. But the metal expands and contracts based on the temperature of food and drink you consume which causes cracks on the tooth.   

White fillings, also known as composites, are made of plastic or glass polymers. These cosmetic fillings allow us to fill a cavity with a substance that will look and feel just like your existing tooth structure.  This restoration is bonded and fits tightly into a tooth to prevent decay.  Rather than a gray or silver material in your mouth, the composite color will match the tooth color.

How Can I Improve My Smile?
There are several ways in today’s dental world to enhance your smile.  Certain procedures include:  

  • Tooth Whitening
  • Bonding
  • Porcelain Veneers
  • Porcelain Crowns

 

We have the capability to improve your smile using all or some of these procedures. For an exact consultation, please contact our office so that we may provide you with a customized treatment plan.

What is Tooth Whitening?

Tooth whitening is a cost effective and safe procedure to create a vibrant and beautiful smile.  Over the years, flouride has been added to the whitening product.  This reduces the risk of tooth and gum sensitivity. 

Tooth Whitening must be monitored by your dentist and only done after a comprehensive exam and hygiene cleaning.

The whitening process can last for a number of years if maintained properly.  Beverages such as coffee, tea, cola and wine will reduce the lasting effect.  Remember, if it could stain a white shirt, it will stain your smile!

What is Bonding?


Bonding is a cost effective procedure used to fill gaps in front teeth and to change a tooth’s color.  The immediate results are amazing.  Within a few hours, you will have a great smile!  Bonding, like tooth whitening, may change color over time due to coffee, tea, cola and wine.

What are Porcelain Veneers?

Porcelain Veneers are thin pieces of porcelain that go directly on your natural teeth. The color hardly changes over time. This entire procedure can take as few as two visits.   Veneers change the size, shape and color of a patient’s teeth.  This procedure is used to repair fractured teeth, teeth darkened by age or medication, or a crooked smile.  Many times, patients ask for porcelain veneers to simply feel and look younger with a straighter, whiter smile! Lumineers are similar to veneers only that they require little or no tooth reduction.

What are Crowns?
Crowns are a permanent cosmetic or restorative procedure that cover the entire tooth.  It will change the size, shape and color of the teeth in as few as 2 visits.  Crowns are made of many different materials. From the most durable to the most esthetic. Let us to help you make the right decision.

What is a Dental Implant?

A dental implant is a “man-made” replacement for a missing tooth or tooth root.  Made from titanium, this screw-like object is inserted under the gum and directly into the upper or lower jaw bone.  There is usually minimal discomfort involved with this procedure.  After a period of a few months, the dental implant and the bone fuse together.  This creates an anchor for the new tooth to be placed onto the dental implant. 

What are the Benefits of Dental Implants?

  • Dental Implants look and function like your natural tooth.
  • Dental Implants are a permanent solution for missing teeth.
  • Dental Implants are maintained by routine hygiene visits to your dental office.
  • Dental Implants decrease the possibility of bone loss, periodontal disease,  tooth movement, and further tooth loss.
  • Dental Implants stabilize a removable full or partial denture.
  • Dental Implants focus only on the tooth or teeth that are missing.  A traditional bridge would involve cutting down two or more adjacent teeth regardless of condition to create a false tooth in between.

 

Who is a candidate for Dental Implants?

With major advancements in dentistry and dental implants, most people are candidates for dental implants.  There may be exceptions due to chronic illness, heart disease, and severe osteoporosis.  

What does the Dental Implant Procedure Involve?

The average dental implant procedure takes 3 to 4 visits.  The first visit is to assess the area with an x-ray and sometimes order a CT scan. An impression for a surgical guide and a temporary prosthesis to cover the implant and replace trhe missing tooth/teeth is taken if necessary. 
The next visit is to place the implant under local anesthesia. The implant is then covered with a lid and the gums sutured inplace. The procedure is usually completed with little to no pain.
About two weeks later the lid will be removed and replaced with a healing cap. This cap will now keep the gum from closing and covering the implant. 
You will next return in approximately 3 months when new bone has formed around the implant securing it for an impression to make the abutment and the permanent crown. Finally, about 3 weeks later the abutment will be screwed into the implant and the crown placed over the abutment.



How Much Does a Dental Implant Cost?

Fees for Dental Implants vary from dentist to dentist.  Always schedule an implant consultation to discuss the procedure and all fees involved.

How long does a Dental Implant last?

With routine dental hygiene scheduled and proper home care, a dental implant can last approximately 30 years to a lifetime.

Does your office offer financing for services provided?

Please contact us to discuss the options we have available to have the smile you always wanted! Call now!


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