While we usually think of the cavity monster as visiting kids, tooth decay and dental cavities can strike anyone, young or old. And while the most common location for cavities to form is in your molars, they can also develop on your front teeth or at your gum line. Plus, it isn’t just overexposure to sweets or sugary drinks that causes cavities. Cavities are caused by the acids produced by bacteria. Frequent snacking or sipping – even on healthy foods – feeds those bacteria. This is especially true of things that cling to your teeth such as chewy or sticky foods and snacks. And when the food and bacterial build-up (plaque and tartar) is not cleared completely away because of poor oral hygiene habits, deep grooves, and fissures in teeth, or crooked and crowded areas that are hard to clean, the acid will cause permanent damage to your enamel. Other things such as smoking, acid reflux, eating disorders, dry mouth, and medications can also contribute to the formation of cavities without you even knowing it. That’s why we encourage frequent check-ups. Catching cavities before they become major saves your tooth and your budget! If we do discover cavities, we will prepare the damaged area and replace and reinforce the enamel with an attractive, tooth-colored composite. No one will ever know you had a cavity!
If your tooth is decayed or damaged more than a composite filling can safely repair, but not quite badly enough to warrant an entire crown, Dr. Van Tassell will likely recommend the toughness and beauty of porcelain inlays or onlays. These restorations combine the strength and natural appearance of porcelain dental crowns with the conservative, enamel retention of a smaller restoration. Dental inlays are used inside the points of your teeth while onlays cover one or more points and sides. Both methods are completely natural-looking and offer the incredible tooth-restoring strength of dental-grade porcelain. We will take impressions of your tooth or teeth, apply a temporary restoration, and send your impressions to our world-class labs for custom creation of your inlays and onlays. When the restoration design is complete, you will return to our Burkburnett office for placement of the dental inlay or onlay, which is permanently bonded to your own tooth. You will leave with a restoration that feels smooth and comfortable to your tongue and looks completely natural in your smile.
When something major happens to a tooth – an accidental breakage, considerable infection or abscess, a root canal, or cosmetic issues that can’t be solved with dental bonding, porcelain dental crowns can come to the rescue. Burkburnett Family Dental uses crowns when teeth are badly damaged because crowns can even hold a cracked or crumbling tooth together! Furthermore, crowns are the best and strongest repair solution for those who grind or clench their teeth. To place a crown, we start by taking x-rays and examining the tooth for damage that extends into the roots. If there is damage or bacteria present in the pulp of the tooth, we may advise a root canal to ensure that there is no infection brewing under the crown and to prevent the excruciating pain that comes from an abscess. After your examination, we prepare your tooth, take molds or impressions, and send these molds to our dental lab for custom fabrication of the crown. We also send specific instructions on the shading and appearance of your crown so that it is indistinguishable from your other teeth. We’ll place a temporary crown and in about two weeks you’ll come back for permanent placement of your specially-designed tooth restoration. Each of our dental crowns is custom made, just for you, of pure porcelain so there are no dark lines at the gums and no dull or flat appearance. We use only the best labs and they create crowns that look so much like your natural teeth, you may forget which teeth were restored and which weren’t!
Missing teeth can be so uncomfortable, it makes everyday feel like a chore. What’s more, even one or two missing teeth can lead to ever-expanding dental problems from shifting teeth and TMJ disorder to gum disease and bone loss! Dental bridges, especially those supported by a dental implant, can fill the gaps, restore your smile, and balance your bite for better health and function. Our custom-made dental bridges consist of porcelain prosthetic teeth held in place by porcelain crowns attached to the teeth surrounding the gap or supported by an implant post. That’s where a bridge gets its name – it is literally a bridge over the gap left by lost teeth. We start by preparing your teeth the way we would for any restorative process, taking impressions, and sending them to our award-winning labs. We only use labs that offer the best and most attractive materials and create them to our very exacting standards. Of course, we never send you home without teeth, so we will create a temporary bridge so you can leave our office feeling comfortable and secure. At your next visit, we fit your bridge in place and make any necessary adjustments. Once the bridge is carefully fine-tuned and your bite measured for comfort, we will cement your bridge in place or attach it to your dental implants. Our bridges are so comfortable, some patients tell us they occasionally forget the bridge is there!
Dentures & Partials
Accidents. Health problems. Aging. Dental anxiety and avoidance of dental care. Gum disease. Any of these things can lead to oral health problems and tooth loss. And missing most or all of your teeth contributes to all kinds of issues from loss of confidence and self-esteem to jaw pain and migraines. We understand the difficulties and challenges presented by tooth loss and are here to help you regain your confidence, health, and appearance with dental prosthetics that look more like natural teeth than ugly and ill-fitting dentures. We design our full and partial dentures to support your bite and look more attractive than standard dentures. How? We don’t just create prosthetics to fill the gaps where your teeth used to be. We also take into consideration who you are and how you looked before you lost your teeth, ensuring that your replacements are cosmetically pleasing, measuring your bite, balancing your jaw and face, and making sure your dentures will fit securely for years to come.
Dental implants are the best tooth replacement option available because they replace booth your tooth and your tooth’s root. This reduces bone loss; prevents shrinkage, slipping, and pinching; and lets you throw away your gooey dental adhesive forever! You can even eat all of your favorite foods again! For more information, please visit our Implant Dentistry page.
Do you have a toothache with any of these symptoms: a continuous ache, jaw pain, bad breath, pain when chewing, swollen glands, swelling in the jaw, or fever? Don’t put off calling Burkburnett Family Dental. Your symptoms could be signs of a tooth infection, which, if allowed to progress, could lead to infection in your jawbone, your skin, and even a systemic infection. These infections can be extremely painful – so painful in fact, that many patients simply want the tooth pulled out! Dr. Van Tassell can help stop your pain and save your tooth with a comfortable and easy endodontic treatment, more commonly known as a root canal. A root canal eliminates infection from the interior of your tooth and its roots. To do this, we remove the dental pulp, irrigate the tooth, and fill the interior of the tooth. After the tooth has been properly cleaned and sealed, we will further strengthen and seal your tooth with a porcelain dental crown. Patients are surprised at the relief they feel after a root canal and happy to keep their own tooth instead of having it pulled.
Have you wondered when and if you might need oral surgery? Here are a few things to look for:
- Is your tooth discolored or black to the roots?
- Do you have a toothache that won’t go away?
- Is your tooth broken, cracked or decayed so severely that repair doesn’t seem like an option?
- Are your wisdom teeth bothering you?
Of course, there are many more reasons for oral surgery or tooth extraction but if you have any of these issues, please call us right away. Our comfortable oral surgery techniques might be your best option to stop your pain and get you healthy. Oral surgery is a dental specialty that specifically deals with correcting problems or damage to the mouth, teeth, and jaw. It is most commonly used to remove wisdom teeth or perform other extractions, to prepare the mouth for dentures, repair damage, or perform bone augmentation. And while many dentists refer these procedures to other dentists, Dr. van Tassell has received all the training and certification necessary to handle almost any oral surgery need, right here in the comfort and security of your hometown dental office. If the thought of dental surgery makes you nervous or anxious, relax. We pamper you and care for you so much that even oral surgery can be a cinch. And if you are under 24 years of age and have impacted wisdom teeth, you can relax completely with IV sedation and special care from our visiting wisdom-tooth specialist. Just snuggle under a blanket, lean your head on one of our cozy pillows and take a nap. When you wake up, your oral surgery will be over!
Technology makes everything easier and more convenient – it’s true in everyday life and it is certainly true when it comes to dentistry. We have invested in advanced dental technology to make even the most complicated dental restoration procedures faster, more comfortable, and more predictable.
To clear away decay and prepare teeth for anything from tooth-colored cavity fillings to full-coverage dental crowns and caps, we use air abrasion to speed the process and eliminate the need for a dental drill or novocaine shots. It is an ideal choice for anyone who suffers from fear of needles or who don’t like the sound, smell or vibration of the drill. Air abrasion can reduce treatment time by half, provides effective and precise care, and eliminates the discomfort of being numb for hours.
To prepare your teeth and gums for restorations, we may use our diode laser to clear away gum infections, create more surface area for porcelain prosthetics to bond to, or make oral surgery a snap. Our patients appreciate our investment in laser dentistry because lasers eliminate bleeding, remove the need for stitches, and immediately begin the healing process.