UCLA School of Dentistry
Santa Clara County Dental Association, California Dental Association, American Dental Association
Annual tobacco and caffeine use can cause severe teeth staining, but in only two to three visits to Dr. Gary V. Sevely, D.D.S., those very stains can be reversed to revert dingy smiles to their former luminescence. At his practice located in Sunnyvale, California, Dr. Gary V. Sevely offers specialized veneer treatments. Realizing that his patients' time is just as vital as his own, Dr. Gary V. Sevely guarantees that his veneer work will be complete in as little as two visits to the office, and no more than three. To wipe away the stains caused by tobacco use and various foods and drinks, Dr. Gary V. Sevely applies thin laminates, known as veneers, which are often able to correct teeth that have become discolored, chipped, cracked, and worn down. Additionally, Dr. Gary V. Sevely informs his patients that the versatility of veneers extends to their usage to close unsightly gaps between teeth. For patients who opt for veneers, the process begins with Dr. Gary V. Sevely creating an impression of the tooth. Immediately thereafter, Dr. Gary V. Sevely's lab technicians work to mold a veneer specially made to fit the patient's tooth. Before the veneer is applied, Dr. Gary V. Sevely makes sure they understand that a veneer is permanent: veneers, Dr. Gary V. Sevely explains, require a small amount of enamel, a hard covering that covers the crown of a tooth, to be removed. Because of the enamel's removal, a veneer is nonreversible; Dr. Gary V. Sevely nor any other dentist will be able to undo the process. The next stage of the process sees Dr. Gary V. Sevely or one of his staff buffing the tooth, removing a thin layer of the tooth which allows for the thickness of the veneer, the impression of the tooth, and a final bonding of the veneer to the tooth performed by Dr. Gary V. Sevely, who uses a special cement to commence the bonding stage. The veneer process concludes with Dr. Gary V. Sevely using a special light.
In my Sunnyvale, California, practice I offer a wide variety of periodontal treatments, crowns, veneers, bridges, root canals, and specialize in implant dentistry. One dental issue that I frequently treat, that many patients have never heard of, is temporomandibular joint disorder, or TMJD.
The temporomandibular joint is the spot near the ear on either side of the head where the temporal bone, the upper jaw, and the mandible, the lower jaw, meet. This joint is one of the most frequently used in our body, as you can imagine from the amount of talking, yawning, and eating we do through the day. Causes of TMJD are usually chronic habits such as teeth grinding, teeth clenching excessive, chewing gum, fingernail biting. TMJD can also be caused by misalignment of the teeth or previous trauma and fracture of the jaw or facial bones.
When the muscles, tendons, and bone that make up this complex joint are not working in sync, patients frequently report headaches and facial pain. A suspected TMJD case often requires a thorough dental and medical evaluation to identify, as there could be many reasons for similar symptoms. Popping, grating, and clicking noises with the movement of the jaw are often one indicator of TMJD. Painful chewing and jaw lock are other common indicators. X-rays and CT scans are often helpful in mapping the bone and joint damage, and MRI can be used to detail the soft tissues.
Some relatively simple treatments for TMJD include taking anti-inflammatory medications such as aspirin and ibuprofen, and applying heat and ice therapy. Naturally, complete jaw rest is important, and a custom-made acrylic device that fits over the teeth can be effective in preventing nighttime grinding. For cases caused by misalignment of the teeth, dental restorations involving adjustments of bridges or crowns will ensure stable bite.
Surgical procedures such as ligament tightening, TMJ arthroscopy, joint replacement, and joint restructuring should only be considered when the case is acute and jaw deterioration at such a level that no other treatment is viable. From my experience surgery is a rare case indeed, and one that can often be prevented by undertaking the other medical treatments in a consistent and timely manner.