Westminster, MD Dentist
Gallagher & Eden Family Dentistry
715 Baltimore Blvd.
Westminster, MD 21157
(410) 848-3866
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Posts for category: Dental Procedures

By Patrick Gallagher DDS Family & Cosmetic Dentistry
August 08, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: veneers  

Do you feel as though your teeth are subpar? If you have ever wished for a brand new smile, you are in luck. Dental veneers are a permanent and effective way to change the shape, size, length, and even color of your teeth. Learn more about dental veneers with your Westminster, MD dentist, Dr. Patrick Gallagher.Veneers

How do dental veneers work? 
Dental veneers fit over the surface of a tooth to mask its imperfections, stains or improve its shape. Veneers can improve the look of chipped, cracked, discolored, yellowed, overcrowded or under crowded teeth. A dental laboratory creates each veneer separately and customizes them to fit into your smile based on an impression of your natural teeth. Made from porcelain, dental veneers have similar light-reflecting qualities as natural teeth and are stain-resistant. Veneers are a durable dental restoration made to last many years with the proper care.

Creating a New Smile With Dental Veneers in Westminster, MD 
Veneers usually require only two dental appointments. The first appointment gives your dentist an opportunity to take an impression of your mouth which the laboratory uses to design your veneers. Additionally, this appointment is your time to ask any questions or address any concerns you may have. Your dentist then prepares the teeth by shaving a tiny amount of enamel from their surfaces. Temporary veneers protect your teeth until the dental laboratory completes the final restorations. At your second appointment, your dentist removes the temporary veneers then fits, adheres and cleans up the permanent veneers.

Caring for Your Veneers 
A good candidate for dental veneers should have a strong at-home oral care routine. This is necessary to avoid complications like tooth decay or gum disease which could shorten the life of your veneers. Caring for your veneers is easy. Simply brush your teeth for at least two minutes twice a day and floss at least once to keep both your veneers and natural teeth healthy between bi-annual dental examinations and cleanings.

For more information on dental veneers and how they can help your smile, please contact Dr. Gallagher in Westminster, MD. Call (410) 848-3866 to schedule your consultation for dental veneers today!

By Dr. Patrick Gallagher, D.D.S.
June 20, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
SpiceUpYourTeeth

As a member of the best-selling pop group Spice Girls, Mel C (AKA Sporty Spice) enjoyed her share of musical superstardom. At the band’s peak in the Nineties, the young singer’s signature look featured baggy sweatpants, an assortment of tattoos, a nose stud and a gold-capped incisor, front and center in her mouth. Today, Melanie Chisholm is still singing — but now she’s a mom, an amateur triathlete… and that gold tooth is just a memory. Not only that, her smile looks more evenly spaced and whiter than it did when she was referred to as the “tomboy” of the group.

What happened? In our view, it all boils down to changing tastes — plus a little bit of help from dental professionals. As the “wannabe” singer proves, there’s no single standard when it comes to making your teeth look their best. Your own look is unique to you — and your smile can reflect that individuality.

For example, crowns (caps) are substantial coverings that may be placed on teeth when they are being restored. They are available in three types: gold, all-porcelain, or porcelain-fused-to-metal. The latter two are tooth-colored, while the gold is — well, shiny like gold bling. Which one is right for you? In many cases, it’s your choice.

Likewise, dental veneers — wafer-thin shells that can correct cosmetic issues by covering the surface of your teeth — can be made in a variety of shades. Their hues may range from natural ivory to Hollywood white, and everything in between. What’s the best color for you? Only you can say.

Some people opt for a “smile makeover” that uses small irregularities in the spacing and color of teeth to create a more “natural” look. Other folks want a perfectly even, brilliant white smile that dazzles the eye. Still others are looking to match or restore the smile they once had — perhaps even re-creating a signature gap between the teeth. As long as there are no other dental issues involved, the choice is yours.

So if you’re unhappy with your smile — or if you feel it doesn’t reflect the person you “wannabe” — why not talk to us about a smile makeover? Just call our office to schedule a consultation. You can learn more about this topic in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Beautiful Smiles by Design” and “The Impact of a Smile Makeover.”

By Gallagher and Eden Dental
June 09, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: dental implants  

While looking into replacement options for your missing tooth or teeth, you may have run across dental implants. These implants, which use a biocompatible titanium post called a fixture to replace a tooth’s root and the tooth itself, can completely overhaul your smile. But are dental implants right for you? Find out the answers to some commonly asked questions about dental implants with help from your Dental ImplantsWestminster, MD dentist.

What can dental implants do for me? 
Dental implants are a versatile procedure which can replace one, many or all of your teeth. Single tooth replacement uses one implant to replace one tooth. Multiple tooth replacement allows your dentist to use several implants to hold a row of prosthetic teeth in place. Your dentist can also strategically place implants throughout the arch to hold an implant-supported denture in place to replace all of the teeth on an arch.

How long do dental implants last? 
The implant’s fixture is implanted into the jawbone beneath your missing tooth. Over time, the fixture integrates with the bone, becoming a permanent part of your smile. While the prosthetic tooth itself may require maintenance over time, your implant will last a lifetime with the proper care.

Am I a good candidate for dental implants? 
If you are missing one or more teeth, you could benefit from dental implants. However, untreated missing teeth no longer stimulate the bone underneath them. This lack of stimulation causes the bone to degrade. Good candidates for dental implants have healthy enough bone for implantation and integration and can undergo general anesthesia and the recovery time required by the procedure.

What is the procedure like? 
The procedure for dental implants usually takes place in two parts. The first part involves an initial consultation with your Westminster dentist to determine if implants are right for you. Surgery involves implanting the implant’s fixture into the jawbone. During recovery, the fixture begins to integrate into the bone. After successful integration, the second part of the procedure begins. At this point, your dentist works with a dental laboratory to create the prosthetic teeth. Then, your dentist affixes the replacement teeth to your implant, completing the procedure.

Caring for Your Implants
Dental implants require a strong at-home oral care routine in order to remain healthy. Brush at least twice daily and floss at least once. See your dentist at least twice a year to maintain both your natural teeth and implants alike.

For more information on dental implants, please contact Dr. Patrick Gallagher III at Gallagher and Eden Dental in Westminster, MD. Call (410) 848-3866 to schedule your consultation for dental implants today!

By Patrick Gallagher DDS Family & Cosmetic Dentistry
June 09, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Flossing  

Learn more about why your should floss regularly from your East Lansing dentist.

Have you ever wondered if flossing is really worth the effort? Dr. Thomas G. Faiver, your East Lansing, MI dentist, explains why flossing is such an important part of your oral hygiene routine and shares a few flossing tips.Flossing

Why should I floss?

The benefits of flossing include:

  • Fresher breath: Flossing removes small bits of food that can become trapped between teeth. If the food particles aren't removed, they begin to decay, causing bad breath.
  • Healthier teeth: Although brushing your teeth is a very effective way to remove plaque from your teeth, your toothbrush bristles can't penetrate the areas between your teeth. Flossing gets rid of plaque in hard-to-reach areas and reduces your risk of developing cavities between your teeth.
  • Reduced risk of gum disease: Plaque turns into a hard deposit called tartar if it isn't removed. When plaque forms at your gum line, it can cause painful gum disease. Flossing helps prevent the formation of tartar.

How should I floss?

Follow these three flossing steps once each day:

  1. Wrap an 18" length of dental floss around your middle fingers on each hand. Use your thumb and index fingers to control the movement of the floss.
  2. Gently rub the floss up and down between each tooth.
  3. Curve the floss around the base of each tooth to remove plaque from your gums. Use very gentle pressure, not a sawing motion, when you floss around your gums.

What kind of floss is best?

Any type of floss is effective in removing plaque, although you may find some types more comfortable than others. If you have wide spaces between your teeth, it might be easier to clean your teeth with floss tape, while waxed, string-like floss may be a better choice if your teeth are close together.

Brushing and flossing, in addition to regular dental exams, are the key to good oral health. Call Dr. Faiver, your East Lansing, MI, dentist, at (517) 351-7222 to schedule your next dental appointment. Keep your teeth strong and healthy with flossing!

AmericasDentistsGotTalent-forFixingDamagedorMissingTeeth

A recent episode of “America’s Got Talent” featured an engaging 93-year-old strongman called The Mighty Atom Jr. The mature muscleman’s stunt: moving a full-sized car (laden with his octogenarian “kid brother,” his brother’s wife, plus Atom’s “lady friend”) using just his teeth. Grinning for host Howie Mandel, Atom proudly told the TV audience that his teeth were all his own; then he grasped a leather strap in his mouth, and successfully pulled the car from a standstill.

We’re pleased to see that the Atom has kept his natural teeth in good shape: He must have found time for brushing and flossing in between stunts. Needless to say, his “talent” isn’t one we’d recommend trying at home. But aside from pulling vehicles, teeth can also be chipped or fractured by more mundane (yet still risky) activities — playing sports, nibbling on pencils, or biting too hard on ice. What can you do if that happens to your teeth?

Fortunately, we have a number of ways to repair cracked or chipped teeth. One of the easiest and fastest is cosmetic bonding with tooth-colored resins. Bonding can be used to fill in small chips, cracks and discolorations in the teeth. The bonding material is a high-tech mixture of plastic and glass components that’s extremely lifelike, and can last for several years. Plus, it’s a procedure that can be done right in the office, with minimal preparation or discomfort. However, it may not be suitable for larger chips, and it isn’t the longest-lasting type of restoration.

When more of the tooth structure is missing, a crown (or cap) might be needed to restore the tooth’s appearance and function. This involves creating a replacement for the entire visible part of the tooth in a dental lab — or in some cases, right in the office. It typically involves making a model of the damaged tooth and its neighbors, then fabricating a replica, which will fit perfectly into the bite. Finally, the replacement crown is permanently cemented to the damaged tooth. A crown replacement can last for many years if the tooth’s roots are in good shape. But what if the roots have been dislodged?

In some cases it’s possible to re-implant a tooth that has been knocked out — especially if it has been carefully preserved, and receives immediate professional attention. But if a tooth can’t be saved (due to a deeply fractured root, for example) a dental implant offers today’s best option for tooth replacement. This procedure has a success rate of over 95 percent, and gives you a natural looking replacement tooth that can last for the rest of your life.

So what have we learned? If you take care of your teeth, like strongman Atom, they can last a long time — but if you need to move your car, go get the keys.

If you would like more information about tooth restoration, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Crowns & Bridgework.”