Posts for category: Dental Procedures
Here at William Ralstin, D.D.S. in Fort Worth, TX, we offer various cosmetic dentistry treatments under the direction of our cosmetic dentist, Dr. William Ralstin. Below is a primer on the treatment that we commonly use for restoring and enhancing the aesthetics of your teeth.
Dental veneers are shells that are custom-designed to resemble your natural teeth. Composed of either porcelain or ceramic, veneers cover the front of your teeth to enhance their shape, color, size, or length. Furthermore, they can help repair teeth that are discolored, worn down, irregularly formed, crooked, unaligned, or gapped teeth.
Additionally, porcelain veneers don’t get stained easily and are fit with your gums. They also appear precisely like your natural teeth. Further, your teeth do not have to be shaped before the procedure, unlike other tooth restoration options.
Also known as teeth bleaching, this is among the fastest and most popular cosmetic dentistry treatments. Sometimes, brushing and flossing may not be enough to get rid of pesky dental stains off the surface of your teeth, and professional teeth whitening can do just that. Professional teeth whitening can be performed right here in our cosmetic dentist’s office in Fort Worth, TX, or at home.
With in-office whitening, a whitening solution is applied to the teeth after your dentist cleans the plaque and leftover debris that is present on your teeth. Heat and light accelerate the whitening process. The whitening process can take about 60 to 90 minutes to finish.
If you prefer to whiten your teeth in the comfort of your home, you can do so with an at-home teeth whitening kit provided by your dentist.
Dental bonding is a process that involves the use of a tooth-colored resin that covers chipped, discolored, decayed, or cracked teeth. The resin material is bonded to the tooth with the help of a curing light. It can protect an exposed tooth root and redefine the shape of your teeth in a fast and minimally-invasive manner.
To Learn More About The Cosmetic Dentistry Services We Offer, Give Us a Call
Call 817-926-8700 to arrange a consultation with our cosmetic dentist, Dr. William Ralstin of William Ralstin, D.D.S. here in Fort Worth, TX.
One of the key elements in a child’s development is their first set of teeth. Although primary (“baby”) teeth last only a few years, they’re critically important for enabling a child to eat solid foods, speak and smile.
But they also provide one more important benefit—they hold the space in the jaw reserved for the permanent teeth developing just under the gums until they erupt. But if a child loses a primary tooth prematurely because of disease or injury, other teeth may drift into the vacant space and crowd it out for the intended permanent tooth. It may then come in misaligned or remain stuck within the gums (impaction).
To avoid this, we try to treat and preserve a diseased primary tooth if at all practical. For a primary molar, one of the large teeth in the back of the mouth, this might include capping it with a stainless steel crown.
Why a metal crown? Primary molars normally don’t fall out until around ages 10-12, so it may be years for a younger child before their permanent molars erupt. All during that time these particular teeth will encounter heavier biting forces than teeth in the front.
A steel crown is often the best solution for a molar given their longer lifespans and encountered biting forces. The crown’s metal construction can stand up to these forces while still protecting the tooth from re-infection from decay. And because molars are typically outside of the “smile zone” occupied by more visible front teeth, the crown’s metal appearance isn’t usually an aesthetic issue.
Crowning a molar usually takes one visit, a dentist typically performing the procedure with local anesthesia and possibly a mild sedative like nitrous oxide gas (“laughing gas”). After removing any decayed structure from the tooth, the dentist will then fit a pre-formed crown over the remaining structure, sized and shaped to match the original tooth as close as possible.
A stainless steel crown is a cost-effective way to added needed years to a primary molar that could otherwise be lost prematurely. Preserving it may help a child avoid bite problems and expensive future treatments.
If you would like more information on dental care for primary teeth, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Stainless Steel Crowns for Kids: A Safe and Effective Way to Restore Primary Molars.”
Years ago, disease or trauma robbed you of one of your teeth. At the time you might have opted for an affordable solution, like a partial denture. But now you'd like to restore that missing tooth with a dental implant, the most life-like tooth replacement available.
That's a great decision. But there may be a hiccup along the way to your new implant: the state of the underlying jawbone. Implants need a certain amount of bone for proper placement. If not enough is present, that may cause an interruption in your plans—and that could be a real possibility if your tooth has been missing for some time.
That's because, like other living tissues, bone has a growth cycle: Old bone cells die and dissolve, while new cells form to take their place. In the jaw, the force produced by teeth during chewing helps to keep this growth process in the bone functioning at a healthy pace.
When a tooth goes missing, though, so does this chewing stimulation. A lack of stimulation can slow the growth rate for that part of the bone and its volume can diminish over time. It's possible for a quarter of the bone volume to be lost within the first year after losing a tooth.
If you've experienced that level of bone loss, we may not be able to place an implant—yet. You might still have a few options. For one, we could attempt to regenerate some of the bone through grafting. Bone material grafted into the affected area can serve as a scaffold for new bone cells to form and adhere. Over time, this could result in a sufficient amount of regenerated bone to support a dental implant.
Another possibility might be to install a smaller diameter implant like those used to support removable dentures. Because they're smaller they require less bone than standard-sized implants. They're not for every situation, though, and are best suited for situations where aesthetics isn't a priority.
To know what your options are regarding an implant-based restoration, you'll need to undergo a thorough evaluation of your oral health, including supporting bone. Depending on your situation, you may still be able to renew your smile with this premier tooth replacement option.
If you would like more information on dental implants, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Dental Implants After Previous Tooth Loss.”
Orthodontic treatment can create a dilemma for older patients: the outcome is straighter teeth and a healthier smile, but the process usually involves conspicuous metallic braces, discomfort, social and professional embarrassment, and certain dietary and lifestyle restrictions for the duration of treatment. Invisalign clear aligner trays make the choice much easier by providing a discreet and minimally invasive alternative to traditional metallic braces for older teenagers and adult patients. Dr. William Ralstin and Dr. Lindsey Horwedel, cosmetic dentists in Fort Worth, TX, recommend Invisalign for teenagers and adults looking for an alternative to traditional braces for orthodontic treatment.
Straighten Your Teeth Discreetly with Invisalign in Fort Worth, TX
Invisalign aligner trays are clear, so they look virtually invisible when worn. The trays are removable for up to two hours every day, allowing you to keep up your normal oral hygiene routine, and to keep your normal diet without the restrictions and adjustments that are sometimes necessary with braces.
The Invisalign system works like braces, gradually shifting your teeth into the correct alignment over time to fix common bite problems such as:
- Open bite
- Cross bite
- Generally straighten teeth
Each tray from your cosmetic dentist is worn for a period of two weeks, and then discarded for the next tray in the series. In general, the treatment period for Invisalign averages about 15 months, depending on the nature and severity of your issue.
Invisalign helps to kill two birds with one stone with orthodontic treatment for common bite problems and malocclusions with a discreet system that allows you to maintain your quality of life in the process. And you won't have to hide your smile in the process!
Find a Cosmetic Dentist in Fort Worth, TX
For more information about the benefits of straightening your teeth with Invisalign and to find out if it is the right option for you, contact our office today by calling (817) 926-8700 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Ralstin or Dr. Horwedel.
Among dental restorations, implants are the closest prosthetic we have to real teeth. They not only replace the visible crown, but the titanium post imbedded in the jawbone adequately substitutes for the tooth root. Because of their unique design, implants are not only life-like, they’re highly durable and could potentially last for decades.
But while their success rate is remarkably high (more than 95% exceed the ten-year mark), they can fail. Ironically, one possible cause for implant failure is periodontal (gum) disease. Although an implant’s materials are themselves impervious to disease, the tissues and underlying bone that support the implant aren’t. If these natural tissues become infected, the secure hold the implant has can weaken and fail.
A gum infection usually begins with dental plaque, a thin biofilm of bacteria and food particles that builds up on tooth surfaces. Certain strains of bacteria within plaque can infect the gums. One particular form of the disease known as peri-implantitis starts as an initial infection and ensuing inflammation of gum tissues around an implant. The disease can quickly spread down to the bone and destroy the integration between the bone and the implant that helps keep the implant in place.
That’s why it’s important for you to keep the implant and the tissues around it clean of plaque, just as you would the rest of your natural teeth. This requires daily brushing and flossing around the implant and other teeth, and visiting your dentist regularly for more thorough dental cleanings.
You should also be alert to any signs of disease, especially around implants: gum redness, swelling, bleeding or pus formation. Because of the rapidity with which peri-implantitis can spread, you should see your dentist as soon as possible if you notice any of these signs.
Preventing gum disease, and treating it promptly if it occurs, is a key part of implant longevity. Preserving your overall dental health will help make sure your implant doesn’t become a loss statistic.