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So What’s New (in dentistry)? Part 1

March 1, 2015

Filed under: Long Island Dentistry — drsherman @ 7:52 pm

Just as technology is changing the rest of our world at an incredibly rapid rate, the way we can approach treating our dental patients is also changing for the better. When you come to our office, you will notice that there have been advances in just about every aspect of the way we do things compared to just a few years ago. I will share two of those things in this article! (Next time, I’ll tell you about two more!)

Digital Dental X-rays – At first, taking dental x-rays seems kind of the same, as we still shield our patients with that heavy apron for safety, and you still hear the little beep when we take the image of your tooth. But we are not using film! Instead, the little gadget that is held in your mouth is an electronic digital sensor which is connected to the computer that you see alongside the dental chair. The moment the image is taken, it appears on the computer screen! This way of taking x-rays brings many advantages to our patient, the dentist and dental hygienist, and even the rest of the world! Here’s a just a few- –

  1. Much Less Radiation! — digital X-rays use up to 90 percent less radiation than film X-rays! While the radiation used for dental examination has always been extremely low compared to other x-rays such as chest or abdominal x-rays, the digital sensor only requires a fraction of the amount of radiation we used to require to pick up the image or your tooth! Great for our patients!!  
  2. Images Big and Clear! – As a dentist, I can tell you that my eyes are very thankful for digital x-rays! We can see many dental problems in their beginning stages, which often allows us to prevent your dental disease from worsening! Great for the dentist, dental hygienist and our patients!      
  3. Shorter Wait Time! – We don’t need to develop the film – It’s instantly right there on the computer! And, while we’re on the subject, this means no developing liquids, no storing films, no film coverings or environmentally harmful chemicals to be disposed of! Great for the world!                                                             

Please ask us more about digital x-rays at your next visit!                                                                                        


Better Bonding and Filling Materials

Thanks to another technological marvel, we have “my personal favorite” which are the natural tooth-colored filling and bonding materials that are available to solve so many of the problems that our patients present with. For so many years, dentists used amalgam (“silver”) fillings to restore cavities in most instances. While amalgam fillings are certainly strong, most people love to learn that there are newer, durable and more esthetic ways to treat teeth that have been damaged or decayed. Today’s bonding material is a resin (plastic), which is longer lasting than the substance used in the past.

In addition to durability, here are some of the benefits and uses of tooth colored fillings:

  1. Creating a Confident Smile! – Our tooth-colored resin materials come in many shades and thus create a noticeably natural appearance. Patients are especially please when an old, defective amalgam filling is replaced with a new resin filling!
  2. Safety! – The newer resin-based fillings do not expand and contract very much and so the pressure which can contribute to cracking of the tooth over time is much less! Because these fillings are bonded to the tooth they restore the strength lost to decay.
  3. Less destruction of tooth! – Because the resin fillings rely primarily on a chemical bond, the dentist can restore teeth with less removal of tooth structure than was necessary for amalgam fillings.
  4. So many uses! –  We use resin bonded materials to solve so many dental problems including, restoring decayed teeth, replacing unsightly fillings, repairing chipped teeth, closing small spaces between teeth and covering and protecting sensitive root surfaces.

Please ask us more about resin-bonded filling materials at your next visit!

See you soon- Spring is almost here!!

Yours in health,

Dr. Gary Sherman

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