General Dentistry

Tom Tu DDS performs the following general dentistry procedures in our Corona and Garden Grove dental offices:
General Dentistry

Bridges

A bridge, also known as a fixed partial denture, is a dental restoration used to replace a missing tooth by joining permanently to adjacent teeth or dental implants. There are different types of bridges, depending on how they are fabricated and the way they anchor to the adjacent teeth. Conventionally, bridges are made using the indirect method of restoration however, bridges can be fabricated directly in the mouth using such materials as composite resin.

A bridge is fabricated by reducing the teeth on either side of the missing tooth or teeth by a preparation pattern determined by the location of the teeth and by the material from which the bridge is fabricated. In other words, the abutment teeth are reduced in size to accommodate the material to be used to restore the size and shape of the original teeth in a correct alignment and contact with the opposing teeth.

The materials used for the bridges include gold, porcelain fused to metal, or in the correct situation porcelain alone. The amount and type of reduction done to the abutment teeth varies slightly with the different materials used. The recipient of such a bridge must be careful to clean well under this prosthesis. Learn more »

Crowns

A crown is a type of dental restoration, which completely caps or encircles a tooth or dental implant. Crowns are often needed when a large cavity threatens the ongoing health of a tooth. They are typically bonded to the tooth using a dental cement. Crowns can be made from many materials, which are usually fabricated using indirect methods. Crowns are often used to improve the strength or appearance of teeth. While unarguably beneficial to dental health, the procedure and materials can be relatively expensive.

The most common method of crowning a tooth involves using a dental impression of a prepared tooth by a dentist to fabricate the crown outside of the mouth. The crown can then be inserted at a subsequent dental appointment. Using this indirect method of tooth restoration allows use of strong restorative materials requiring time-consuming fabrication methods requiring intense heat, such as casting metal or firing porcelain, which would not be possible to complete inside the mouth. Because of the expansion properties, the relatively similar material costs, and the aesthetic benefits, many patients choose to have their crown fabricated with gold. Learn more »

Dental Bonding

Dental bonding is a dental procedure in which a dentist applies a tooth-colored resin material (a durable plastic material) and hardens it with a special light. This ultimately "bonds" the material to the tooth and improves the overall appearance of teeth. Tooth bonding techniques have various clinical applications including operative dentistry and preventive dentistry as well as cosmetic and pediatric dentistry, prosthodontics, and orthodontics. Learn more »

Dental Extraction

A dental extraction (also referred to as exodontia) is the removal of a tooth from the mouth. Extractions are performed for a wide variety of reasons, including tooth decay that has destroyed enough tooth structure to render the tooth non-restorable. Extractions of impacted or problematic wisdom teeth are routinely performed, as are extractions of some permanent teeth to make space for orthodontic treatment. Learn more »

Dental Fillings

A dental restoration or dental filling is a dental restorative material used to restore the function, integrity and morphology of missing tooth structure. The structural loss typically results from caries or external trauma. It is also lost intentionally during tooth preparation to improve the aesthetics or the physical integrity of the intended restorative material. Dental restoration also refers to the replacement of missing tooth structure that is supported by dental implants.

Dental restorations can be divided into two broad types: direct restorations and indirect restorations. All dental restorations can be further classified by their location and size. A root canal filling is a restorative technique used to fill the space where the dental pulp normally resides. Learn more »

Dental Implants

A dental implant is a "root" device, usually made of titanium, used in dentistry to support restorations that resemble a tooth or group of teeth to replace missing teeth. Virtually all dental implants placed today are root-form endosseous implants, i.e., they appear similar to an actual tooth root and are placed within the bone. The bone of the jaw accepts and osseointegrates with the titanium post. Osseointegration refers to the fusion of the implant surface with the surrounding bone. This is what makes the implant resemble the look and feel of a natural tooth. Since dental implants fuse with bone and lack the periodontal ligament, however, they will feel slightly different than natural teeth during chewing.

Prior to the advent of root-form endosseous implants, most implants were either blade endosseous implants, in that the shape of the metal piece placed within the bone resembled a flat blade, or subperiosteal implants, in which a framework was constructed to lie upon and was attached with screws to the exposed bone of the jaws. Dental implants can be used to support a number of dental prostheses, including crowns, implant-supported bridges or dentures. They can also be used as anchorage for orthodontic tooth movement. The use of dental implants permits undirectional tooth movement without reciprocal action. Learn more »

Dentures

Dentures (also known as false teeth) are prosthetic devices constructed to replace missing teeth, and which are supported by surrounding soft and hard tissues of the oral cavity. Conventional dentures are removable, however there are many different denture designs, some which rely on bonding or clasping onto teeth or dental implants. There are two main categories of dentures, depending on whether they are used to replace missing teeth on the mandibular arch or the maxillary arch. Learn more »

Teeth Cleaning

Teeth cleaning is part of oral hygiene and involves the removal of dental plaque from teeth with the intention of preventing cavities (dental caries), gingivitis, and periodontal disease. People routinely clean their own teeth by brushing and interdental cleaning, and dental hygienists can remove hardened deposits not removed by routine cleaning. Learn more »

Root Canal Therapy

Root Canal Therapy

Endodontic therapy is a sequence of treatment for the pulp of a tooth, which results in the elimination of infection and protection of the decontaminated tooth from future microbial invasion. This set of procedures is commonly referred to as a "root canal." Root canals and their associated pulp chamber are the physical hollows within a tooth that are naturally inhabited by nerve tissue, blood vessels and other cellular entities. Endodontic therapy involves the removal of these structures, the subsequent cleaning, shaping, and decontamination of the hollows with tiny files and irrigating solutions, and the obturation (filling) of the decontaminated canals with an inert filling such as gutta percha and typically a eugenol-based cement.

After endodontic surgery the tooth will be "dead," and if an infection is spread at apex, root end surgery is required. Although the procedure is relatively painless when done properly, the root canal remains a stereotypically fearsome dental operation, and, in the United States, a common response to an unpleasant proposal is, "I'd rather have a root canal." Learn more »

See Also

The dental procedures described on this page are from Wikipedia and licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.