Diplomate, American Board of Prosthodontics • Fellow, American College of Prosthodontists
Doesn't your smile deserve a specialist's care?
3510 Fannin Street w Beaumont, TX 77701 w Phone: (409) 835-5300
Serving Southeast Texas & Southwest Louisiana
American Dental Association
American College of Prosthodontists
Amercan Academy of
American Board of Prosthodontics
When a patient no longer has any natural teeth, complete dentures are the traditional method to restore function and appearance. Well fitting dentures should be comfortable and look very natural.
Many patients experience difficulty wearing conventional dentures because of poor stability and decreased chewing function. In some cases, due to bone loss of the jawbone, dentures cannot be fabricated to fit as tight as desired. The use of dental implants to improve the stability and retention of dentures is becoming quite popular.
Today’s dental implants are typically made of titanium and may be parallel-sided or tapered and may or may not have threads. These fixtures are placed into the jawbone and allowed to heal until they are “integrated” into the bone. Dental implants may be utilized to replace one, many, or all of a patient’s teeth.
Crowns cover or “cap” a tooth in order to restore the normal function and appearance of the tooth. Crowns may be made as all metal, porcelain fused to metal or all-ceramic (porcelain). Crowns are indicated for teeth with very large fillings, teeth that have had a root canal, fractured teeth and misshapen and/or discolored teeth.
Traditional methods to replace a missing tooth or teeth include the fabrication of a bridge. To replace a missing tooth with a bridge at least one tooth on either side of the space created by the missing tooth must be prepared for a crown. Then, a false tooth is joined to the crowns, and the entire structure is cemented to the prepared teeth. The patient cannot remove the bridge, and special aids are available to keep it clean.
Removable Partial Denture
When there are multiple missing teeth, weak anchor teeth or no posterior teeth to anchor on, a removable partial denture is utilized to replace teeth. These restorations typically are made of a metal framework and a plastic base with teeth. They must be removed for daily cleaning and at night.
Porcelain veneers are used to modify the shape and color of teeth. Veneers are thin shells of porcelain that are etched and then bonded to the enamel of the teeth. Tooth preparation is necessary to avoid over bulking of the tooth, but it is limited to the enamel and usually involves only a few surfaces of the tooth.
Many products are now available for patients to whiten their teeth. These products include commercially available strips, custom fabricated trays with a beaching gel or bleaching in a dental office using UV light or laser as the catalyst.
Many patients are interested in improving the appearance of their smile. Prosthodontists are the dental specialists who long ago determined what constitutes a pleasing smile. Teeth whitening, reshaping natural teeth, bonding of tooth-colored material to teeth and porcelain veneers are procedures commonly used to modify a smile.
Many patients use this acronym to refer to the painful symptoms related to Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction. Symptoms may include pain in the joint itself, pain in the muscles of mastication and limited movement of the lower jaw.
Teeth Grinding/Night Guards
Often patients who grind their teeth at night are unaware of their habit, but the forces exerted on both the teeth and the Temporomandibular Joint – TMJ can be quite destructive. A custom-made night guard can protect the teeth and relieve pressure on the TMJ.
Sleep Apnea refers to a temporary cessation of breathing while sleeping. Many times the airway is obstructed by the patient’s anatomy, and the placement of the specially designed night guard that repositions the lower jaw can improve the airflow.
Congenital and Developmental Mouth Defects
Many patients are missing certain teeth because they never developed, or the teeth may be misshapen. A Prosthodontist can determine the best way to replace and/or restore these teeth. Other patients exhibit teeth with poorly developed tooth structure throughout the mouth and require a Prosthodontist’s expertise in restoring these teeth to proper form and function.
Many Cleft Lip and Palate patients exhibit missing teeth in the area of the cleft and would benefit from a Prosthodontist’s care in the management of these areas. Although most Cleft Palates are now successfully closed surgically, there are patients who require an Obturator to close the palatal defect, whether it is congenital or acquired. A Prosthodontist possesses the skills necessary to fabricate an Obturator that will allow the patient satisfactory speech and swallowing.
Mark A Pigno DDS - Board Certified Prosthodontist - Providing Dentures, Dental Implants, Reconstructive, and Cosmetic Dentistry for Beaumont TX, Port Arthur, Nederland, Port Neches, Groves, Lumberton, Sour Lake, Silsbee, Vidor, Orange, Sulphur, Lake Charles LA & surrounding areas of Southeast Texas and Southwest Louisiana.