Broken Teeth

A tooth can be chipped or broken any number of ways: biting into hard foods, hitting against a hard surface, sports/auto accidents, or any other trauma. While some fractures are visible, others may not be as obvious and will need to be examined by a qualified dental professional using x-rays and other diagnostic tests.

Depending on the extent of the broken tooth, options for restoring the tooth may include dental bonding, porcelain veneers, or porcelain crowns. In some cases, if the nerve has been affected, the tooth may require additional attention.

More extensive fractures may require root canal treatments or even extraction and replacement of the tooth with an implant or a porcelain bridge. There are various treatments for a smaller, cosmetic chip. Many of them can be performed in just one dental visit. Depending on your situation, any one of these chipped tooth treatments may be an option for you to correct chips or surface flaws: cosmetic bonding, porcelain veneers, or porcelain crowns.

Fear of Dentistry

Recommended solutions can vary depending on the degree of the problem. There are a number of different solutions ranging from: proper dental hygiene, whitening toothpaste, professional teeth whitening, cosmetic bonding, and porcelain veneers.

Cater-to-Cowards Techniques

We start with a welcoming and friendly environment. When you arrive as a new patient, your visit will be unhurried. Your treatment coordinator will give you an escorted tour of our office to help you get comfortable with your surroundings.

We are prompt in taking you into a treatment room and having you seen by one of our dental hygienists or dentists, which can reduce some of the anxiety that often results from waiting for an extended period. We take the time to listen to your concerns, and we welcome your questions. We don’t rush or pressure you into treatment. Your treatment options will be explained to you. Before you receive treatment, we will explain what will take place, so you know what to expect.

For your comfort during your dental procedure, we offer music, movies, neck pillows, blankets, warm face towels, calming sound-wave dental chairs, and a chairside hand massage. We make the effort to help you focus on relaxing, instead of on the sights and sounds of dental equipment.

Our hygienists and dentists have a friendly and calming manner, as confirmed by the comments below from two of our patients:

“Atlanta Center for Cosmetic Dentistry provides such a relaxing atmosphere and experience that you will wonder why you didn’t go there earlier. They are super nice folks who genuinely care about their clients.” – Bruce G.”

Our dentists are gentle. They use a computerized, handheld device to deliver pain-free injections. Many anxious patients become so comfortable and at ease with us that their overall level of anxiety is reduced, and they begin to enjoy dental visits. For patients with a higher level of anxiety, we offer sedation dentistry.

“Everyone made me feel so welcome and special! I was very nervous, but everyone made me feel so comfortable! They are very professional, yet personable.” – Linda L.”

Sedation Dentistry Can Help

Sedation dentistry is a safe and effective way to help you relax. We offer three levels of sedation:

  • Nitrous oxide – When you breathe in this colorless, odorless gas (also referred to as laughing gas), it has a calming effect. It relieves anxiety and helps you have a pleasant dental experience. We offer complimentary nitrous oxide to our patients.
  • Oral conscious sedation – In advance of your dental appointment, you will take oral, anti-anxiety medication for a deeper level of relaxation than nitrous oxide provides. You will still be conscious, and your vital signs will be monitored. It is unlikely that you will remember what occurred during your dental procedure.
  • IV sedation – Anti-anxiety medication is administered intravenously. This appeals to many patients because it works quickly. If you remember your dental appointment at all, it will only be a vague memory.

Visit our sedation dentistry page for more details on how it can help you have a pleasant and productive appointment.

An Appointment with a Cater to Cowards Dentist

Helping you maintain good oral health in a relaxing environment is our priority. We welcome you to experience the difference that Dr. King and her staff can make as we cater to your needs and help you have positive dental experiences. Call us to request an appointment, or complete our Request an Appointment form.

Cavaities / Decay

Dental caries, also known as tooth decay or a cavity, is a disease where bacterial processes destroy hard tooth structure. These tissues gradually break down, producing dental caries (cavities, or holes in the teeth). If left untreated, the disease can lead to pain, tooth loss, and infection.

Depending on the extent and location of tooth destruction, various dental treatments can be used to restore teeth to proper form, function, and aesthetics, including fillings, bonding, porcelain veneers, or crowns. In addition, lifestyle changes such as dietary changes and pH control therapy can help. That is why many dental health organizations worldwide advocate preventive and prophylactic measures, such as regular oral hygiene and dietary modifications, to avoid dental caries.

Discolored or Stained Teeth

Recommended solutions can vary depending on the degree of the problem. There are a number of different solutions ranging from: proper dental hygiene, whitening toothpaste, professional teeth whitening, cosmetic bonding, and porcelain veneers.

Gaps

Gaps in teeth, referred to by dentists as a diastema, can be unsightly and give smiles a picket-fence appearance. Certain celebrities, such as David Letterman, Madonna, Michael Strahan, and Lauren Hutton, have celebrated their gaps, while others seek solutions to close the gap. When the diastema is between the two front teeth, it can make a big impact on the overall appearance of the smile. Gaps can occur genetically or be caused by behaviors such as grinding or tongue thrusting, which can push the teeth apart.

In the hands of a skilled cosmetic dentist, there are various options for treating a diastema. Treatments to close spaces may include orthodontic options: such as traditional braces, Invisalign, or Inman Aligners. Some of the cosmetic options include porcelain veneers, ultra thin veneers, or cosmetic dental bonding.

Grinding

Bruxism is the technical term for grinding and clenching that abrades teeth and may cause facial pain. People who grind and clench, called bruxers, unintentionally bite down too hard at inappropriate times, such as in their sleep. In addition to grinding teeth, bruxers also may bite their fingernails, pencils and chew the inside of their cheek. People usually aren’t diagnosed with bruxism until it is too late because so many people don’t realize they have the habit. Others mistakenly believe that their teeth must touch at all times. About one in four people suffer from bruxism.

Bruxism can either directly or indirectly cause many problems. Grinding can cause teeth to become painful or loose. Patients can literally grind away parts of their teeth, leaving them with worn surfaces or fractured enamel. Over time teeth become sensitive and patients may experience jaw pain and headaches. Forceful biting when not eating may cause the jaw to move out of proper balance.

There are a number of ways to treat bruxism. Your dentist will determine which single treatment or combination of treatments is right for you. When stress is the major cause of bruxism, people need to find ways to relax. People who have difficulty handling stress may need to seek counseling or our dentist may prescribe muscle relaxants to relax jaw muscles. We many times can prescribe a night guard, which prevents grinding from occurring during sleep. To help alleviate muscle pain, physical therapy may be needed.

Gummy Smile

Generally a smile shows eight to ten upper teeth, with almost no gum showing above them. Certain pathologic and physiologic conditions, however, may cause some individuals’ smiles to expose a great deal of gum above the upper front teeth, making them look shorter, and giving the appearance of a gummy smile. Much like the cuticles on your fingernail, the gums can cover your tooth structure, making your teeth appear short and fat instead of their natural shape.

An artistic and trained cosmetic dentist can provide solutions for people with a gummy smile. For example, a gum lift, also known as gum sculpting or gingival contouring may be an immediate solution for this problem. Gum contouring uses a laser to remove excess gum tissue, which allows for more teeth to show and a more even gum line. This procedure is usually quick and performed with minimal discomfort.

Missing Smile

An individual may have missing teeth for a number of reasons. Teeth can be knocked out in trauma or accidents, fall out due to periodontal disease, or be missing due to genetic factors. Missing teeth can lead to problems such as decay, bite and TMJ dysfunction, and aesthetic concerns.

Cosmetic dentistry offers a myriad of options for replacing missing teeth. Some solutions include: implants, porcelain bridges, and dentures. These options can be used alone or in conjunction with other services to address overall aesthetics and functionality. It is important to get recommendations from a highly trained, cosmetic dentist on what solutions work best for your case.

Periodontal Disease

85% of the adult population is affected with gum disease. Gum disease is classified by swelling or soreness of the gums (the soft tissue) around your teeth. It is caused by the bacteria in plaque, a sticky, colorless film that forms on your teeth. This multiplication of bacteria release toxins that inflame the gums. This results in gingivitis, the earliest and still reversible stage of periodontal disease.If you do not remove plaque by brushing and flossing your teeth, it can build up and infect not only your gums and teeth, but also the bone that supports them. If not treated by a dentist, you can lose your teeth due to your body’s response to the bacteria infection.

Gingivitis is the earliest stage of periodontal disease and can be reversed with gum therapy appointments and good oral home care. Advanced stages of periodontal disease cannot be completely cured, but can be controlled and managed with maintenance. Once bone loss occurs, it cannot be reversed, only maintained. Treating periodontal disease is very important to prevent further bone loss that can lead to tooth loss.

To find out if you have gum disease, your dentist or hygienist needs to check your teeth and gums. Since early gum disease can be reversed, it’s important to see your dentist or hygienist if you see any of the following:

  • Gums that bleed or are red, puffy or swollen, or sore.
  • Gums that have pulled away from your teeth.
  • Changes in the way your teeth fit together when you bite.
  • Pus that appears between your teeth and gums.
  • Constant bad breath or bad taste in your mouth.

Solution: Patients with periodontal disease require more than just regular cleanings every six months. Periodontal therapy is the treatment of choice for gum disease, since routine hygiene visits are only meant to prevent gum disease

Bad Breath

Bad breath, or halitosis, typically originates in the mouth. It is usually caused by oral bacteria breaking down food debris and the resultant decay. This process creates byproducts called volatile sulfur compounds, which emit a smell similar to rotten eggs. The type of bacteria that initiates this process needs an environment that is low in oxygen, so they usually inhabit areas that are difficult to reach, such as the pockets around teeth and the fissures of the tongue.

Solutions: If you have bad breath, you should obtain a complete dental examination that includes a periodontal examination. Keeping your mouth as clean as possible helps reduce the bacteria that can cause bad breath. In reducing bacteria and food debris, it is important to practice good oral hygiene, such as brushing and flossing your teeth at least twice a day. Also to alleviate odors, clean your tongue with your toothbrush or a tongue scraper, a plastic tool that scrapes away bacteria that builds on the tongue. Chewing sugar-free gum can also help control odors. If you have dentures or a removable appliance, such as a retainer or mouthguard, make sure that you clean the appliance thoroughly before placing it back in your mouth. Before you use mouth rinses, deodorizing sprays or tablets, talk with your dentist because these products only mask the odor temporarily, and some products may actually make the problem worse.

Rotated Teeth

Crooked or rotated teeth are one of the most common cosmetic concerns. Having crooked teeth can result in compromised contact with adjacent teeth and cause food to be trapped between the teeth, which may lead to gingival damage. It can also be a cause of tooth decay and other related disorders. Aesthetically, it can make a smile appear uneven, or even create the illusion that some teeth are darker than others.

Historically, the only solution for straightening teeth and adjusting bite was orthodontics, specifically metal braces. There have been plenty of advances in orthodontics, such as Invisalign, that have greatly expanded options for straightening teeth. Using full-mouth reconstruction and smile designs, an accredited cosmetic dentist can use porcelain restorations to achieve “instant orthodontics.”

Solutions: Treatment options may vary depending on the patient’s age, time constraints, and other factors. Orthodontics options include Invisalign, lingual braces, Inman aligners. Options for instant orthodontics include porcelain veneers, cosmetic bonding, or Pearl Ultrathin Veneers (instant orthodontics).

Silver or Mercury Fillings

From a purely cosmetic standpoint, of course the metallic color does not blend with the natural tooth color. This is especially a concern when amalgams are used on front teeth. On one hand, amalgam or mercury fillings can last for a long time, but on the other hand, they can also weaken the tooth structure over time as they corrode and leak, leading to fractures and recurrent decay.

Solutions: Treatment options to replace old, defective amalgams depend on the extent of these restorations and range from resins or tooth colored fillings, to inlays or onlays, to porcelain crowns.

TMJ Issues

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the jaw joint. Often referred to in the singular, it is actually a pair of joints connecting your lower jaw to the temporal bones on the side of your head. It is a complex joint, allowing for complicated movements in many directions. Properly functioning joints provide the mobility needed for speaking, swallowing, eating, chewing, and making certain facial expressions.

TMJ Symptoms and Causes

TMJ dysfunction can involve one or both joints. Some of the symptoms of joint dysfunction include:

  • Stiff jaw muscles, limited law movement, or jaw locking
  • Radiating facial, jaw, neck, or shoulder pain
  • Painful jaw clicking or popping
  • A change in the way your upper and lower teeth fit together
  • Chronic headaches
  • Earaches, ear pressure or pain, ringing in the ears (tinnitus)

Some of the causes of TMJ disorder are arthritis, trauma, teeth grinding, a malpositioned jawbone, or an improper bite. Extensive, poorly done dental work, missing teeth that have not been replaced, or traumatic dental treatment can all be contributing causes.

Prevention and Treatment from a Well-Trained Dentist

A well-trained TMJ dentist can help prevent TMJ dysfunction by ensuring your restorative work is done correctly and the occlusion is balanced. For early detection, a thorough examination during your regularly scheduled dental appointments includes a check for signs of TMJ disorder.

If you are diagnosed with TMJ, a minor case can resolve with self-care and limited treatment. Jaw exercises and alternate application of ice and heat packs can relax the jaw muscles and reduce swelling. If your TMJ dysfunction is related to teeth grinding, stress-reduction techniques might be recommended. You might also benefit from a night guard or another oral appliance that relaxes the jaw muscles, reduces teeth grinding, and improves the alignment of your bite. You will be advised to rest the joint as much as possible.

Dr. Charlie Cooper is a TMJ dentist who has been treating the disorder for decades. He has received post-graduate training for TMJ-related issues from the Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies.

Dr. Cooper participates in ongoing training to stay current with the latest technology and techniques for diagnosing and treating the disorder. He will accurately evaluate your symptoms and determine if they are related to TMJ. He will also recommend treatment options to help relax your jaw joint and alleviate the symptoms.

Get Relief for Your TMJ Pain

TMJ cases can be complex. Most dentists don’t get involved with treating the disorder. If you think your symptoms are TMJ related, it’s important to receive an examination from a well-trained dentist who will do a thorough examination, correctly evaluate your symptoms, and recommend the right treatment.

Call us to schedule an appointment for an exam, or request an appointment online.

It is such a comfort to know that I can always be confident that I am getting the most competent care, advice, and quality materials for long-term dental health. Many thanks to Dr. Cooper, Dr. King, and your wonderful staff!” – Dana N.

Tooth Pain

Tooth pain can include feelings of sharp shooting pains, dull aches, or strong and steady pain in or around a tooth. Pain can vary in degrees, from a very minor annoyance to an unbearable ache.

The source of tooth pain can come from a number of things, most commonly an irritation of the nerves within the roots of teeth due to dental caries (cavities), infections of the dental pulp, or fractures of root of the tooth. Other common causes of tooth pain include gum and bone infections, or inflammation from wisdom teeth.

While there are natural at home remedies to treat the pain, it is vital to visit a dentist for evaluation and treatment of the source of the pain. When left untreated, cavities can continue to decay, affecting a larger area, infections can worsen and require additional treatments, and gums can become very swollen and painful.

Tooth Sensitivity

Sensitivity is characterized by a tingly feeling or a flash pinch of pain affecting one or more teeth. The sensation associated with tooth sensitivity can occur consistently or intermittently. Intermittent tooth sensitivity can be triggered by hot and cold food or beverages, when cold air hits the teeth, or when an object contacts the teeth.

Sensitivity usually results from the root nerve of the tooth being affected. This can occur various ways, including: gum recession, acidic liquids (such as soda) that cause enamel wear and dentin exposure, tooth grinding (in which case all teeth feel sensitive), brushing teeth too hard, which may cause enamel loss and dentin exposure, gum disease (periodontitis), or a chipped or fractured tooth. Also, as we age, enamel (the outer tooth surface) naturally wears down, exposing the dentin (the initial inner tooth surface) and causing sensitivity.

Treatment options for sensitivity include prescription fluoride rinses, gels and toothpastes, or in-office desensitizer to provide relief. More severe cases may require bonding or other types of restoration such as porcelain veneers or crowns.

Emergencies

We understand the importance of being taken care of quickly when there is a dental emergency. If you have a dental emergency, you need help without delay. If you are facing a dental emergency, we urge you to connect with us at Atlanta Center for Cosmetic Dentistry immediately. The dental emergencies we handle include:

  • Toothache
  • Swollen Jaw or Face
  • Broken Tooth
  • Lost Filling
  • Bite Pain
  • Wisdom Teeth
  • Sports Injuries
  • Accident Trauma
  • Broken Crown
  • Lost Crown
  • Lost or Cracked Veneer

After something goes wrong with your oral and dental health, it is critical that it is handled promptly and professionally. When the tooth has costlier to repair – or in the worst case, lead to losing a tooth.

Why Call Atlanta Cosmetic Dentistry for Dental Emergencies?

Once a tooth has broken, you have a toothache, or a cosmetic issue arises, you want it treated correctly so that no further problems develop. Our top-rated cosmetic dentists offer skills above and beyond the ordinary, and can help you resolve your dental emergency, whether you need a root canal, a replacement crown or bridge, or any other dental issue.

What to do in a Dental Emergency?

Some dental problems can be treated within a day or two, while others are true emergencies. To determine whether you need treatment at once, the following symptoms are important:

  • If you are in severe pain, seek immediate help.
  • If you are bleeding, get help.
  • If your tooth or teeth are loosened due to impact or injury, it is an emergency.
  • If your gum is infected and swollen.
  • If a tooth has broken and you are in pain, you require immediate help.

If you are facing any of these emergencies, immediately call our office so we can arrange treatment.

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