DEN­TAL CARE

The News Herald (Willoughby, OH) - - Advertising - Jef­frey Gross, DDS, FAGD

Q: I Want Bond­ing Not Ve­neers A: That was the re­quest that I re­ceived from a new pa­tient. This charm­ing lady placed great em­pha­sis on her oral health. She had nu­mer­ous crowns and fill­ings present in her mouth. This com­pre­hen­sive den­tistry al­lowed her to keep her teeth. There were no gaps or spa­ces in her mouth. Her metic­u­lous­ness with her oral care and dili­gence in fol­low­ing the ad­vice of den­tal pro­fes­sion­als was ev­i­dent in her mouth. She had con­cerns that she wanted to ad­dress. One of them in­volved a cos­metic mat­ter of worn lower front teeth. These teeth were notably eroded and dis­col­ored. She ar­tic­u­lated a very spe­cific re­quest. “No ve­neers, only bond­ing “, she told me. Be­fore we get to her specifics, it’s im­por­tant to de­fine our terms and the dif­fer­ences be­tween them. The term bond­ing de­scribes how a den­tal filling or other ma­te­rial at­taches or is glued to a tooth. The tooth is pre­pared in a very spe­cific way fol­lowed by the ap­pli­ca­tion of a thin liq­uid or glue. Once this glue is stuck to the tooth, then the filling can be at­tached to the tooth. Stated an­other way, the filling is bonded to the tooth. Bond­ing can occur against a flat sur­face. The tooth does not re­quire drilling holes or ex­ten­sive cut­ting for the bond­ing to work. We can bond fill­ings to a tooth. We can also bond ve­neers to a tooth. A ve­neer is a cos­metic cov­er­ing that is at­tached firmly to a tooth. The ve­neer is bonded or glued to the tooth via the mech­a­nism that I just de­scribed. So, if these are re­ally ap­ples and or­anges, as they don’t ap­ply to the same thing, what was my pa­tient ask­ing me? She was re­fer­ring to how we cover the tooth. Do we bond a pre-made cov­er­ing, called a ve­neer or do we layer a filling ma­te­rial on the tooth and se­cure it with the bond­ing tech­nique? Both cov­ers are bonded or glued to the tooth. Her re­quest cen­tered around what we bond to the tooth. The orig­i­nal cos­metic cov­er­ings were spe­cial filling ma­te­rial that we ap­plied to the tooth. Pre-made cov­ers known as ve­neers came later as they were eas­ier and faster for the den­tist to ap­ply. Af­ter ex­am­in­ing her, I saw that she re­ally was not a can­di­date or ei­ther pro­ce­dure. She ground and wore down her front teeth so in­tensely that there was no room to place ei­ther with­out chang­ing her bite. Ev­ery time that she would close her mouth, she would bump into the bond­ing or ve­neers first. Her back teeth would not touch. I needed to cre­ate space for front teeth to bite prop­erly and solve her cos­metic con­cerns. As we get up in years, the lower front teeth be­come much more prom­i­nent and our eyes fo­cus on these teeth. In our teenage years and for a decade or so af­ter that we may not see these teeth at all. Past that point the lower teeth be­come more vis­i­bly prom­i­nent. We went on to dis­cuss a chronic is­sue that she was fac­ing and left the cos­met­ics for an­other time. I will ad­dress this with her in the fu­ture and stop the con­tin­ual wear on those teeth. Suf­fice it to say that when it comes to a tooth wear­ing away, we can be our own worst en­emy. Mod­ern den­tistry has a va­ri­ety of so­lu­tions to help peo­ple faced with this is­sue. It’s im­por­tant to note that we can’t fo­cus on that is­sue in a vac­uum. It must be con­sid­ered in the scope of the en­tire mouth. If you see some­thing in your mouth that just doesn’t ap­pear to be right or an area has changed sig­nif­i­cantly over time, please con­tact us so that we can dis­cuss it. Call Me­gan at 440.951.7856 and set up a com­ple­men­tary con­sul­ta­tion. To­gether we can ex­plore op­tions to help you and your oral health. I look for­ward to meet­ing you.

Jef­frey Gross, DDS, FAGD is an Ohio li­censed gen­eral den­tist and is on the staff of Case West­ern Re­serve School of Den­tal Medicine. The Healthy Smile 34586 Lakeshore Boule­vard (¼ mile west of Route 91 on Lakeshore Blvd) East­lake, Ohio 44095 440-951-7856 Sev­er­ance Med­i­cal Arts, Suite 603 5 Sev­er­ance Cen­ter Cleve­land Heights, Ohio 44118 216-371-2333 www.jef­frey­gross­dds.com

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