Our office offers a variety of services to assess all your dental needs. See below for a brief explanation of each service or ask our staff – we’ll be happy to answer any questions.
This is an option for filling the space created by a missing tooth. It is formed to look like the missing tooth, and it takes its place in the mouth. The sides of a bridge use the two surrounding teeth for support, hence the name. A bridge replaces the missing tooth, both functionally and cosmetically. Bridge work is as much an art as it is an exact science. The materials used may be gold alloys, porcelain bonded to metal alloy, or all ceramic material. The choice of material depends on requirements for strength, wear, and/or esthetics.
It is important that a missing tooth be replaced as soon as possible for several reasons. If not treated the teeth surrounding the gap begin to shift inward, creating a whole chain reaction of bad things. Teeth use their neighbors for support, and, with one missing, they start to "fall." As this worsens the bite changes in response to the pressure. This can eventually result in problems with the entire jaw, e.g. TMJ. The surrounding teeth deteriorate and it is just a matter of time before them, too, are lost. Gum disease becomes a serious problem, with the difficulty of treatment increasing as the neglect continues.
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This can be anything done to correct imperfections in the appearance of the mouth. Anyone who is unhappy with their smile can have it fixed. The upper teeth show, usually, only when smiling, while the lower teeth remain hidden. This is reversed when talking, with the upper teeth remaining hidden while the lower teeth show. The color, alignment, spacing as well as regularity of the teeth are the characteristics that give the overall appearance. Any of these can be repaired to give a stunning look to the mouth.
At our office a wide range of cosmetic options are offered. Some of these options are whitening, smile design, recontouring of the shape of the teeth, veneers, bonding, and all ceramic/porcelain crowns.
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Crowns are full coverage restorations that are used to cover a tooth that is likely to break, or is too broken down to be restored with a filling. They are most commonly done after root canal treatment, or when a large filling wears out. The larger the hole made by a cavity that has to be treated, the more likely a crown will be needed. Even after a filling is put in a large cavity, a tooth is more likely to break.
Keep in mind that the jaw muscles are the strongest in the human body. Teeth are subjected to tremendous pressures. Crowns ride over the weakened tooth, providing strength and protecting the tooth against breakage. A broken or cracked tooth is a far more serious matter and much more difficult to treat. Crowns prevent this, as well as making for a nice smile.
It takes two appointments to restore a tooth with a crown. In the first appointment any decay is removed from the tooth and it is shaped to accept the crown. Then an impression is made of the tooth for use in fabricating a crown. Between the two visits the crown is made, usually of high-strength porcelain over gold alloy, all ceramic material, or gold. During this time a temporary crown is worn. In the second visit this temporary is removed. Then the permanent crown is adjusted as needed and then cemented in place.
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There are different types of dentures, but they share their common function. They replace teeth that have become loose or been lost due to bone loss. When bone loss around the roots of teeth is great enough to loosen them or let them fall out, it's time for dentures. Relax. No one enjoys losing their natural teeth, but you can still eat and talk regularly.
The entire mouth is examined and a determination is made as to which teeth will have to be removed, and which will remain. The loose teeth are then extracted. Dentures are fitted to go over or around whatever teeth remain in the mouth, depending on the type. There is an adjustment period after dentures are placed in the mouth, and it can take some getting used to. But once accustomed to the dentures, all the normal functionality and appearance return and one just carries on as usual. Often implants can used to further stabilize the dentures.
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Fillings are done to remove decay, and replace the affected tooth structure. It is called a filling because new a material fills hole that decay left. Now days most teeth are treated with bonded tooth colored composite resin fillings. Caught early enough, cavities can be treated easily and painlessly. If not treated decay can lead to tooth pain and/or infection, and the tooth would need root canal treatment or extraction.
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A dental implant is an option to replace a missing tooth. In this procedure, a small titanium shaft is surgically implanted into the bone and allowed to set. The bone grows around it forming a tight connection, which additionally slows or stops the bone loss that occurs when the root of a natural tooth is missing. Once the implant is firmly set in the mouth, the dentist then works to attach the replacement tooth onto the top of the shaft. This permanent solution has the advantages over bridge work that it does not stress the surrounding teeth for support, and, should the tooth wear out, another can simply be replaced on the shaft.
Implants can also be used as support as part of an implant bridge. This is an alternative to partial dentures, and has several advantages. First, there is no adjustment period to acclimate the patient who, once the work is done, only feels teeth, not metal supports intruding into the mouth. Second, this slows the bone loss occasioned by missing teeth. Third, there is no discomfort or difficulty in eating. And, best of all, of course, they don't have to be taken out all the time.
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Invisalign® straightens your teeth with a series of clear, virtually invisible custom-molded aligners. By using a series of clear removable aligners, Invisalign® straightens your teeth with results you'll notice.
The course of treatment involves changing aligners approximately every two weeks,moving your teeth into straighter position step by step, until you have a more beautiful smile.
The custom-molded aligners are very comfortable. They are made of a clear plastic smooth surface that is gentle in your mouth. The trays are removable. You should only remove your trays to eat, drink, brush, and floss.
Nitrous Oxide (Laughing gas)
Now, this isn't really a service in itself, it's used to make other treatment more comfortable. This is the famous dental anesthetic. It's safe, has proven effective over a long period of time, and is pleasant. You will be given a mask that allows you to breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. In about 30 seconds to 4 minutes you will notice a more sedate feeling, and your cheek and gums may go numb. After this any needed local anesthetic is applied and treatment begins. Afterwards, you will be given pure oxygen to breathe for about five minutes to dissipate the effects of the nitrous and return you to a normal state.
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Non-Surgical Gum Treatments
The gums, ligaments, and bone around the teeth form the foundation for
ones teeth. All structures are also referred to as the periodontium.
When the periodontium is not healthy, it jeopardizes the teeth just as
a bad foundation would threaten the stability of a house. Signs of
unhealthy periodontium (gum disease) may be as follows: gums that are
red and bleed easily, persistent bad breath, gums that are pulled away
from the tooth, loose teeth, and changes in the position or bite of the
teeth. Any of these signs may mean something is wrong. With the proper
care, however, it may be possible to return them to a healthy state.
This is where appropriate gum treatments come in. If you're having a
problem, come in and see us so we can take care of it right away. The
treatment usually involves a deep cleaning or root planing done under a
local anesthetic, along with local antibiotic agents. If the gum
disease gets too severe it may need to be treated through surgery or
extraction. This is why it is important to get it treated at the first
sign of a problem.
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What is Functional Orthodontics?
The objectives of functional orthodontic treatment include creating a full broad smile, a pleasing facial profile, a healthy and functional bite and jaw joints, and a stable and lasting result. Dr. John Rohrabaugh is an American Association Functional Orthodontics Member.
He is dedicated to a lifetime of study and practice to achieve the finest results possible for his patients.
Functional orthodontic treatment involves aligning the upper and lower jaws by use of a functional appliance, and then aligning the individual teeth via the use of standard braces. The long term results of this combined type of treatment, as opposed to using only standard braces, tend to be more esthetically pleasing and stable.
The best time to correct orthodontic problems is during the growing years which can be anywhere from 7-17 years of age. This growing time can be used to direct or guide teeth and jaws into better positions. This doesn't mean that orthodontics can't be done at an older age, in fact, many adults undergo orthodontics well into their 30s, 40s, 50s, and even beyond, and can achieve excellent results.
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What to Expect at the Ortho Evaluation
Dr. Rohrabaugh will check to see if the patient is a candidate for orthodontics. This appointment is a 10 minute appointment.
After the ortho evaluation, the next step would to be to schedule an orthodontic workup. At this appointment we will take impressions, oral photographs, a panoramic x-ray and a cephalometric x-ray. This appointment usually is 40 minutes. Dr. Rohrabaugh will evaluate these records for whatever problems are discovered. He will then review the treatment that would be most beneficial to you.
After the orthodontic workup is completed, we will schedule you back in our office in 3 weeks for an orthodontic consultation. We ask whenever possible either parents or decision makers attend the consultation. At this appointment Dr. Rohrabaugh will go over the course of treatment. Then you will meet with our Financial Co-ordinator to discuss financials.
Please note that the first orthodontic evaluation is free of charge.
We use State of the Art materials during treatment to achieve a long term result. We never use recycled brackets, bands, or appliances.
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Caring for Your Braces
Dr. Rohrabaugh recommends eating softer foods for the first week after you get your braces. There have been some dramatic advances in modern orthodontics to make treatment more comfortable for the patient. Typically there is some discomfort two-four days after each adjustment. Orthodontic wax can be rolled into a ball and placed on the dry bracket around the area causing irritation.
Brushing and Flossing Properly
You must floss behind and in between the braces, and also brush the tops and the bottoms of the metal brackets. To make this task easy, you may want to use floss threaders. Always brush teeth thoroughly after each meal and snack. If you are not able to brush your teeth, try rinsing your mouth with water to loosen food that might otherwise remain trapped in your braces.
You must use your proxabrush, this is also called a "Christmas Tree" shaped brush. These brushes are great for getting around brackets and wires.
Don't Rely on Mouthwash
Just remember a swig of mouthwash just won't cut it over actual brushing and flossing. While there are many great mouthwashes on the market they are not effective for removing plaque. Mouthwash can be used in addition to a brushing and flossing routine.
Foods to Avoid
Please try hard to avoid foods that are sticky, gooey, or crunchy because these foods can break or damage wires and brackets. Sticky foods could also become lodged in between brackets.
Soft drinks (pop) and sports drinks are high in sugar and/or acidic products shoud be avoided to eliminate decalcification (white scars).
Please Avoid the Following:
- Jolly Ranchers
- Beef Jerky
- Hard Shell Tacos
- Life Savers
- Corn on the Cob
- Gum Popcorn
- Tootsie Rolls
Hard fruits and vegtables will need to be cut into bite size pieces so that wires and brackets do not become bent or broken.
Please do not chew on pens, pencils, pen caps, or fingernails.
You should be able to play any sport you wish. Dr. Rohrabaugh does however, recommend wearing a mouth guard, especially in a sport where there is a chance you may be hit in the mouth or face.
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Root Canal Treatment
Root canal treatment (also referred to as root canal therapy or endodontic therapy) is made necessary when a cavity is allowed, through neglect, to reach all the way to the pulp. (Regular cleanings and checkups prevent and detect problems early) Sometimes deep restorations or trauma to a tooth may cause the nerve to be damaged to the point it needs root canal therapy, also. Once this occurs the pulp becomes infected, and can even extend through the root tip and begin to eat away at the surrounding bone (this is an abscess). By the time the pulp is infected it must be treated, and cannot heal on its own. It can even weaken the entire immune system. This is dangerous, not to mention very painful. Symptoms that the pulp has become infected may include sensitivity to hot/cold or sweets, pain, swelling, pain to biting or pressure, and a bad taste in the mouth. Sometimes, however, no symptoms are apparent and the person is unaware of any problem until a checkup.
A root canal is then performed to clean out the infected tooth pulp, and disinfect the canals of the tooth. The only other treatment would be to extract the tooth. Once the infection is resolved, the canal(s) are filled in to prevent any further infection. Usually a core build-up and crown is recommended for restoring a tooth that has had root canal therapy.
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TMJ stands for temporal-mandibular joint. Temporal, as in temple area of skull; mandibular as in mandible, or lower jaw; joint as in it's where the head and jaw meet. Problems in this joint may be caused by a misalignment of the teeth, trauma, or excess muscle tension. Aside from the two bones that meet there, cartilage buffers them and five muscles are involved in the area. If something goes wrong a good deal of trouble can result. Problems in this area can cause:
- Trouble/soreness in opening and closing the mouth
- Clicking or popping of the jaw
- Pain in the jaw muscles
- Soreness in the area, sometimes extending to the face
Dental treatments for the condition can include replacing missing teeth, moving teeth, adjusting the bite, filling gaps between teeth, etc. There is no one solution that is right for all cases. Sometimes a plastic mouthpiece is used to prevent clenching or grinding that is contributing to the problem. If untreated and taken to extremes, surgery may be required to repair a badly damaged joint.
Tooth whitening is a popular procedure to make teeth whiter and brighter, and therefore more attractive. Bleaching can be used to whiten stained and discolored teeth, or simply to enhance a dull smile. Either way, tooth whitening is a safe and relatively painless procedure ideal for most patients.
Tray whitening is a less expensive whitening treatment you can use while in the comfort of your own home to gradually whiten teeth. We will first take an impression of your teeth to create a customized clear tray that you will wear to whiten your teeth. Within a few days your trays will be ready to be picked up and we will show you how to apply the special bleaching material to the trays. The whitening gel trays should be worn 30-60 minutes up to twice a day. At the end of this period, you will see maximum whitening results that are nothing short of dazzling. Occasional treatment can be used at your convenience to maintain your new smile.
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Veneers are a dental procedure in which a covering is placed over the outside (visible area) of the tooth. Veneers are usually only done to the part of the teeth that are visible when talking or smiling. The procedure can be direct or indirect.
The direct technique usually involves placing composite resin on the outside of the tooth using bonding. This method is usually referred to as bonding.
The indirect technique usually involves two appointments because the veneers will be fabricated at a dental laboratory. At the first appointment the teeth are prepared, impressions taken, and the teeth are given a temporary covering. In two to three weeks the veneers are back from the laboratory, the temporaries are removed and the veneers are bonded to the teeth. The laboratory fabricated veneers are usually made using porcelain or pressed ceramic, and are very esthetic.
The advantage of veneers versus crowns is that much less tooth material is removed, and the procedure is generally less uncomfortable. Veneers are recommended for teeth that have large fillings or little tooth structure.
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This is a focused beam of X-Ray particles through bone which produces an image on special film, showing the structure through which it passed. This gives the familiar black and white images that doctors and dentists use to diagnose problems. X-Rays are a necessary part of the diagnostic process and not to have them taken could lead to undiagnosed disease. Without an X-Ray of the whole tooth, and supporting bone and gum tissues, there is no real way to detect infection or pathology that requires attention.
In our office we use digital radiography which allows us to take X-Rays using 50-70% less radiaton versus convential X-Rays.