Scott Trettenero, DDS: restorative dentistry can be expensive
Written By Scott Trettenero, DDS – Fort Myers Dentist
In today’s economy, nothing can be more important than protecting all aspects of our health, and also protecting our wealth. We can’t afford to have major breakdowns in our mouth as restorative dentistry can be expensive. It would make sense to try and prevent small problems from becoming large problems. Fort Myers Dentist, Scott Trettenero, DDS is doing its part to help patients become healthier with some new breakthroughs in prevention technology. 3M has developed some revolutionary products such as 3M dental implants, that are changing the way preventive dentistry is being provided.
One of the biggest issues in Fort Myers dentistry today that is affecting a great majority of local residence is demineralization of their teeth. This leads to cavities, breakdown of existing restorations leading to replacements, gum recession, and erosion of enamel especially at the gum line. So what is causing this demineralization that we see in so many of our Fort Myers patients? Here are interesting facts that can shed some light on this situation.
78 million Baby Boomers have gingival recession, a condition that only worsens with age. And 50% of patients will get at least one cavity at this gum line area.
There is attrition, erosion, abrasion, and surface wear on 40% of children’s teeth and 80% of adults’ teeth.
In the U. S., soda pop consumption has surpassed 4 cans a day, and many people drink as many as 12 cans a day.
Because soda pop contains phosphoric acid and 10-12 teaspoons of sugar per can, many dental and medical professionals recognize this as a public health crisis.
Milk consumption is down which stimulates re-mineralization of teeth by its calcium content.
1/3 of the U.S. population is semi-dehydrated on most days.
70% of over the counter toothpastes are more abrasive than the course paste used in the dental office during cleanings.
You can tell from the above facts that the demineralization of our teeth is a very large issue facing our population. As a dentist it means that I have to address these issues if I am going to help my patients have healthy teeth that are not going to deteriorate over their lifetimes. I want my restorative work to last and last for obvious reasons and to prevent failures caused by breakdown at the margins due to demineralization.
Until recently we had to rely upon the patient to adequately brush and floss on a daily basis and hope that they had their teeth cleaned professionally in order to prevent problems. We recommended fluoride toothpastes and rinses to give them a little extra help and that was about all we could do. As dentists we always wished that there could be a pill that they could take or a rinse or something that could do magic to prevent any future problems.
Well now we have the magic formula that can and will prevent dental problems that have its origin from demineralization. Thanks to the good people at 3M and their diligent research we have products and techniques that give us the confidence to look our patients in the eyes and tell them that we can solve these kinds of problems if they just follow our protocols. The good news is it’s so easy to do.
Our main tools that we use include a special fluoride varnish that is painted on the teeth. It has a unique formulation that makes it stick to the teeth for just enough time to penetrate the fluoride through the surface 150 microns. This not only will remineralize the outside of the tooth but also below the surface where the decay is working its way through the enamel. This is a major breakthrough as our previous treatments could help remineralize only at the surface but the inside of the tooth that had been affected would continue to breakdown and the cavity would continue to grow. Now we have the technology to really prevent and reverse cavities. Of course, if the cavity is already broken through the enamel and has become substantial then it will have to be restored by a dentist.
The next breakthrough in prevention is the creation of the first toothpaste that really and truly works to make teeth healthier. Toothpastes are a huge business because most people use toothpaste everyday and billions of dollars are spent each year on this product. Almost every toothpaste that is marketed makes special claims such as whitening your teeth, fresh breath, cavity prevention, desensitizing capabilities, etc, for the purpose of trying to get your business. Other than being abrasive and having a little fluoride, most all toothpastes won’t live up to their claims. Toothpastes will not whiten teeth, period. Most toothpastes are too abrasive to be used on a regular basis but the manufactures make them that way so that maybe some of the stains on the teeth will be brushed off. That is how they make their whitening claim.
3M has developed a toothpaste that actually lives up to its claims with a product called Clinpro. It has tri-calcium phosphate crystals that are the building blocks of tooth structure. Using nanotechnology it also has a prescription strength fluoride that binds together with the crystals when used in the mouth. These crystals, along with the fluoride, will “fill in” areas of demineralization to make them strong and healthy. This is also a great treatment for sensitive teeth as it goes directly to the source of the problem to correct was is wrong with it. Other toothpastes such as Sensodyne will only numb the area temporarily. Not only will it only numb the area but all but one of the different types of Sensodyne are way too abrasive and will help to perpetuate the problem. Is this maybe by design? Clinpro has silica as its abrasive instead of the pyrophosphates in most toothpastes. Pyrophosphates have been proven to be overly abrasive and actually roughen up your teeth. You want your teeth to be smooth and slick so as to not attract plaque.
Clinpro will remineralize breakdowns in your teeth without the aid of healthy saliva. This means if your saliva is compromised due to dehydration, medications, medical conditions, or dry mouth, Clinpro will overcome these conditions to keep your teeth healthy. It is 4 times stronger than over the counter toothpastes with 5000 parts per million fluoride which has been proven to keep teeth from demineralizing. It is also a crème based formula instead of a glycerin which makes it last longer in the mouth and doesn’t dissipate quickly like most toothpastes will.
Another weapon we have in our arsenal is a light cured glass ionomer and it can be painted directly on the root areas that are weak, breaking down, and demineralizing. This sealer will stay on the tooth for up to 6 months releasing fluoride which will keep the area strong and protected. It will virtually make the weakest area of your teeth one of the strongest keeping erosion and decay away. Plaque can’t form on a glass ionomer which is fantastic so for up to 6 months we can keep tarter and plaque from building up in these treated areas. It will make these areas virtually free from sensitivity by sealing the root surfaces. The exposed root surface won’t wear away and will become slick and strong. This can be applied at your hygiene appointment on a regular basis to keep your root surfaces as strong and healthy as possible.
Read about some of the new technology that this Fort Myers dentist, Scott Trettenero DDS has brought to Southwest Florida dental care.
Dentistry has these new tools to help you solve problems before become bigger and more expensive to solve. You can’t afford not to take advantage of these miracles of modern dentistry. If you can’t afford the prevention, then how are you going to afford fixing the major and costly breakdown due to dental disease? These treatments are easy, affordable, and effective, and I’m happy we have them to help our patients keep their teeth in optimum health.
We will be happy to help you to achieve optimum dental health by recommending these products to you based upon your individual needs. Ask us what is best for you. If you have any questions regarding the wonderful new preventive products, please feel free to ask. We are here to help you.
Dr. Scott Trettenero, DDS
Fort Myers Florida Dentist – Call (239) 344-7210