Preventative and Family Dentistry contains services which include cleanings, periodontal (gum) disease treatment, headache and tooth grinding prevention, and sports mouthguards.
Comprehensive and Periodic Dental Exams
Dr. Laurilla performs comprehensive dental exams for new patients and periodic exams at the regular intervals for established patients to ensure that not only are your teeth healthy, but also your overall health as well.
A comprehensive dental exam is performed when a new patient is welcomed into the practice. This includes a review of your medical history including medications and allergies, and a complete head and neck exam including the teeth, soft tissues, jaw, cancer screening, and neck anatomy. Dr. Laurilla performs this extensive exam not only to become acquainted with the mouth, but also to become familiarized with your overall health, and how that may affect the oral environment.
A periodic exam is performed at each cleaning appointment to ensure the oral cavity is healthy, and there are no changes in your medical history. Any changes in your medical history including medications should be passed on to Dr. Laurilla no matter how small they may be.
Periodontal disease affects the supporting structures of the teeth, the gum tissue (gingiva) and bone. It is a painless disease caused by bacteria that may ultimately result in tooth loss.
Periodontal disease is a painless condition, caused by bacteria that is present in everyone's mouth. Although there is no cure for the disease, its onset can be prevented with good homecare and regular visits, and its progression may be stopped through various procedures dependent upon the severity.
Using pocket depth measurements, amount of bleeding, inflammation, tooth mobility, and x-rays, the dentist or hygienist will make a diagnosis that will fall into one of the categories below:
This first stage of periodontal disease is characterized by tender and inflamed gum tissue which likely has associated bleeding. Plaque, comprised of bacteria, and its toxic by-products irritate the tissue causing the localized tissue reaction described.
Treatment: Improved homecare techniques and regular dental cleanings every 6 months.
If the plaque is not removed properly, it hardens into tartar (calculus). As the plaque and tartar increase, the pocket depth increases allowing further accumulation of bacteria and often pus. The increase in toxic by-products causes the gums to become very irritated, bleed more easily, and the start of bone destruction resulting in slight to moderate bone loss.
Treatment: A special periodontal cleaning called scaling and root planing or root debridements (deep cleaning) will be recommended. The area to be treated is numbed for the patient's comfort. Then, special instruments are used to reach deep in the pocket enabling the removal of the bacteria and tartar which allows for reattachment of the tissue to the tooth thereby reducing the pocket depth. Special rinses or localized placement of antibiotics may also be used in conjunction to aid in the healing. The goal of the treatment is to reduce the periodontal pockets by removing the accumulation of bacteria and taratar, essentially creating a more healthy environment which is easier to clean and maintain.
When the disease has progressed to the stage where the root debridements (non-surgical) have not responded favorably, a more aggressive treatment is required. A dental specialist, a Periodontist, may perform a surgical procedure to physically reduce the pockets and reshape the bone to create the healthy environment for the teeth. Dr. Laurilla refers his patients to the finest specialists to perform these types of procedures.
Headache Prevention/Tooth Clenching and Grinding
Now there is a way to protect your teeth from clenching/grinding and prevent jaw and headache pain before it starts that requires no pills, no shots, no surgery, and no side effects!
When you wake up, do you feel any of the following:
painful, aching jaw
sore, sensitive teeth
tension headaches (migraines)
Or, do you have worn, chipped, or cracked teeth?
These problems can be treated and prevented because they are most likely caused by clenching or grinding your teeth during the night and even during the day. When you clench your teeth, your muscles can create a great deal of stress and tension to your neck muscles, jaw joints, and teeth.
Many times, Dr. Laurilla can fabricate a custom-made NTI-tss device in one visit. The NTI-tss (Nociceptive Trigeminal Inhibition tension suppression system) is a small clear plastic device that fits over your top or bottom teeth making it nearly impossible to clench. The device will minimize clenching intensity, and in time, minimize intense clenching as the source of pain and destruction of your teeth.
Many migraine sufferers can benefit from the NTI as well. The FDA has approved the device as a treatment for migraines. The contracting muscles involved in clenching/grinding have been shown to cause blood vessel constriction and nerve stimulation which can trigger migraines. Since the NTI decreases these muscle contractions, migraine headaches can be treated non-surgically, without medications, while you sleep!
Quite often, Dr. Laurilla treats dental emergencies caused by sports-related injuries. These injuries range from a small chip, a large fractured piece of tooth, or complete loss or avulsion of the tooth. The athlete can even suffer a concussion if there is a severe blow to the jaw. Dr. Laurilla can make a custom fitted Pro-form mouthguard to protect your teeth from that stray elbow or ball.
Pro-form mouthguards custom-fitted by Dr. Laurilla conform to your unique dental structure. Custom-fitted mouthguards offer several advantages over those bought at the sporting goods store.
PROTECTION - The double lamination and custom fit allow for superior strength and greater shock dispersion which dissipates forces that can cause damage.
SPEECH - A guard that stays in place allows for clearer speech thus improving communication between players.
COMFORT - If the guard is not comfortable, the athlete will not wear it. A comfortable and secure fit ensure the guard will be worn.
OXYGEN - An ill-fitting guard can restrict your breathing. This reduces oxygen intake which reduces performance.
Dr. Laurilla makes the mouthguards in his office. At the first visit, an impression or mold is taken of your teeth. At the second visit, the guard is tried in to ensure a proper fit.
In many contact sports, a mouthguard is required in order to participate. But, the risk of dental injury is present in any sport where physical contact may occur. A custom fitted sports mouthguard made by Dr. Laurilla can not only protect your teeth, but can also improve performance.tted Pro-form mouthguard to protect your teeth from that stray elbow or ball.
Get to see your teeth up close and personal!
Using an intraoral camera, Dr. Laurilla can show you up close pictures of your teeth. This greatly enhances Dr. Laurilla's ability to diagnose conditions of the teeth, and communicate those conditions with the patient. A picture is worth a thousand words!
Although there is never a good time for a dental emergency, Dr. Laurilla makes every effort to treat your emergency as soon as possible.
Dental emergencies always occur at the worst time. Let's face it, tooth pain never occurs at a good time. Dr. Laurilla makes every effort to treat your emergency as soon as possible. If your emergency should occur after office hours, Dr. Laurilla provides an emergency number to call so you can speak directly to him.