TMJ (Temporal Mandibular Joint) Pain
TMJ pain is a condition that afflicts thousands of people. Frequent indicators of TMJ include popping and clicking of the jaw; limited jaw function; pain in the neck, shoulders, and upper back; and pain and pressure in the face and ears. We provide conservative therapies that often can eliminate this painful and frustrating problem.
Sealants protect the chewing surfaces of the back teeth and should be applied as a child’s permanent teeth erupt. Though typically placed on children’s teeth, adult molars can also be sealed, provided a tooth does not show evidence of decay. The sealants that we have placed have been highly successful in preventing decay.
Nightguards are used as a treatment option to prevent damage to the chewing surfaces of the teeth associated with grinding and clenching. It is a conservative treatment that is very successful and highly recommended as an initial treatment for patients with TMJ dysfunction.
By creating an acrylic pattern of your teeth, Dr. Clark can help you protect your teeth from unnecessary wear, while relaxing your jaw in preparation for a more permanent solution.
When you do not need a full crown, onlays may be the solution. The onlay procedure is a restoration in which porcelain or gold is applied to a tooth surface to provide support as a conservative treatment option. Our patients who have had onlays have given us positive comments about their appearance.
A crown is a restoration that covers a tooth in order to strengthen it as well as restore it to its normal shape and size. A crown may be placed to cover a large filling when there is little remaining tooth structure, attach a bridge, protect weak teeth from fracturing, or restore fractured teeth.
Dr. Clark does not utilize cheap labs to increase his profit margin but chooses only top quality labs and biocompatible materials for the crowns and partials fabricated for his patients. You may not be aware that many alloys used in crowns contain base metals which are less expensive but can be a hazard to both your gum tissue as well as your overall health.
A tooth that has been treated with root canal therapy will require a crown following treatment to provide strength and support to the tooth. We only use materials for crowns that will provide the longest lasting benefits to our patients.
A fixed bridge, usually made of gold (or porcelain-faced precious metal), is used to replace missing teeth. A bridge helps to create a normal bite, prevent stress on the dental arch, prevent the drifting and tilt of adjacent teeth, inhibit decay in difficult areas, and slow the onset of periodontal diseases.
Bridges are composed of abutments (the sound teeth on either side acting as supports) and the span (a framework attached to the abutments with artificial teeth attached to that framework). Our patients appreciate the expertise and training that Dr. Clark has in this field as well as his success with his patients in designing and placing these restorations.
Dental implants replace teeth that have been missing since birth or have been lost due to gum disease, infection, trauma, or decay. Implants are surgically attached to the jawbone and become a permanent part of your mouth.
With implants, patients no longer experience the slipping, moving, and irritation of dentures. Dental implants look, feel, function like natural teeth because they are made of a metal that is highly compatible with the jaw bone. As a result, the implant (a small post that protrudes from the gum) is able to fuse easily with the underlying bone.
Dr. Clark (or an oral surgeon or periodontist) can perform the surgical procedure for your implant. Dr. Clark will complete the implant procedure by attaching natural and functional tooth structures to the implant components, providing you once again with the comforts and confidence that accompanies a beautiful smile.
Partial dentures are indicated if some serviceable teeth are present for support in conjunction with the gums and jawbone. A partial denture, though removable, provides form and function replacement for missing teeth. If indicated, Dr. Clark will evaluate whether a cast-metal or an acrylic partial will best serve your needs.
Bonding is a process in which tooth-colored material is applied to tooth surfaces, sculpted into shape, hardened, and polished to match surrounding teeth. With this procedure Dr. Clark can close gaps, repair chipped or fractured teeth, and disguise discolored teeth. Bonding usually requires one office visit and no anesthesia. Bonding is the choice of treatment for patients who have minor front tooth imperfections or fractures.
Tooth-whitening procedures offer patients with stained, discolored, or dull teeth an opportunity to have a whiter, brighter smile. Whitening significantly reduces external surface stains affected by food and beverages. We provide an at-home whitening system, which is comfortable and affordable, in conjunction with in-office appointments to monitor progress. We take impressions of your mouth to prepare your custom-filled trays and specifically select a whitening program for you. The process is then completed in the comfort of your own home.
Since 1986 Dr. Clark has been offering orthodontic care to his children and adult patients alike. Early intervention to correct not just the positioning of the teeth but the shape of the jaw and position of the bite is important. This is commonly referred to as “Two Phase Orthodontic Treatment”.
What is Two Phase Orthodontic Treatment?
Children sometimes exhibit early signs of jaw problems as they grow and develop. An upper or lower jaw that is growing too much or not enough can be recognized at an early age. If children are found to have this jaw discrepancy, they may be candidates for early orthodontic treatment.
The goal of first phase treatment is to correct significant differences between the upper and lower jaws and to create sufficient space to accommodate the eruption of permanent teeth. For these purposes, appliances can be used to direct the growth of the jaw and improve teeth alignment.
Early treatment may decrease the treatment time required for the second phase. Most often, at the end of first-phase, the teeth may not be in their best or final position, this will be accomplished during the second-phase. Periodic recall appointments are set in order to check the progression of jaw growth and permanent tooth eruption. Second-phase treatment most often consists of straightforward orthodontic therapy (braces) that will align the teeth. The major advantage of two-phase therapy is to maximize the opportunity to achieve the ideal healthy, functional, aesthetic, and comfortable result that will remain stable. Taking advantage of the time when the child is growing is of utmost importance in these cases. The main disadvantage of waiting for permanent eruption of teeth is that the final result may not be functionally healthy or stable.
Call us and we can schedule a free orthodontic evaluation for you or your child. Before treatment can begin, an orthodontic workup: an appointment in which necessary X-Rays and other records are taken, is usually necessary.
Dr. Clark will tailor a personal treatment program to help you achieve the best possible results.
Full dentures are used if there are not any teeth left for support. The full denture covers more of the jaw than a partial denture and is partly held in place by a natural vacuum in the mouth. Dr. Clark recommends post-poning a lower denture as long as possible as they are more problematic than the upper. With the development of new materials and processes, dentures can now be made more accurately and with fewer appointments than in years past.
Dr. Chester Clark has provided top quality dental care at the same location since 1977. He earned his dental degree at Loma Linda University. Generally accruing more than twice the required number of continuing education hours from dental education courses and reading about scientific studies enables Dr. Clark to stay at the forefront of dentistry so that he can provide optimal care to his patients. He regularly attends courses focusing on the most current treatment options and is a member of the ADA, IAOMT and other scientific organizations. Continue reading