Your Questions Answered
Who needs full mouth restoration?
Many patients have had different dental procedures completed over the course of their lifetimes. These can include silver amalgam fillings left over from childhood, porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns that are showing a dark gum line, bridges, and even partial dentures. Often these restorations have broken down or do not have an aesthetic appearance.
Some of these cases include TMJ disorder, where the teeth no longer have a comfortable bite, leading to headaches and other kinds of pain. In all of these cases, full mouth restoration involves using the most appropriate procedure to address each individual tooth and the bite as a whole to provide a completely comfortable and aesthetic smile.
What is smile design?
Smile design is a process you undertake with your cosmetic dentist. Whether you need cosmetic or restorative treatment, we will take photos of your face and teeth. You will then sit down with Dr. Gavrilos to tell him what you like and dislike about your smile. He will show you photos of work he has completed on other patients to give you a full range of visual options. Then he will create a mock-up of the smile you have designed together. This model or set of provisionals can be worn as you go about your life for a week. And you can make changes as you see fit. Once you are completely happy with your new smile, it will be created by Dr. Gavrilos and his master ceramist. And only after your final approval will the work of placing your new smile be completed.
What are provisionals?
Once you have arrived at a cosmetic or restorative smile design as discussed above, a model or set of provisionals is created for you to wear. You can speak, eat, smile, and function as you normally would with the provisionals, and they give you a chance to get input from your family and friends. You can also communicate changes to the length, width, thickness, and shape of your provisionals until you are completely satisfied. At this stage, Dr. Gavrilos’ master ceramist uses the provisionals as a three dimensional blueprint from which to fabricate your new smile.
Do I have TMJ disorder?
TMJ is the acronym for the temporomandibular joint, or jaw joint, that joins the skull to the jawbone, or mandible. DMJ disorder or syndrome describes dysfunction in the joint that leads to moderate to severe symptoms. These symptoms include popping, clicking, or pain in the joint, muscle tightness and spasms, ear and head aches, and even dizziness.
The most important aspect of effective treatment for TMJ disorder is proper diagnosis. Once it has been diagnosed, the most appropriate treatment can be undertaken.
How is your practice different?
Dr. Gavrilos has pursued hundreds of hours of advanced post-graduate training in both the cosmetic and functional aspects of restoration. It is rare to find someone who is as qualified at both ends of the spectrum. And Dr. Gavrilos has treated many patients who have not received the kind of care they needed from other dentists. He trained with Dr. Peter Dawson, the leading proponent of TMJ and bite-related research, and he serves as a member of the board for the American Equilibration Society, which recognizes only the most advanced training in occlusion, or bite-related treatment. Our entire office practices the Dawson philosophy of clinical education and practice management. In addition, Dr. Gavrilos is one of only a handful of dentists to be accredited by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry.
Can you show me what my smile will look like ahead of time?
Yes! Once you have arrived at a new smile design with Dr. Gavrilos, we use computer technology to generate a series of graphic images showing your new smile. In addition, we will provide you with a model, or set of provisionals that you can actually wear home, long before any permanent work has been completed.
I want my front teeth to look better, but I don’t want to wear braces. Can you help me?
Yes. Crooked teeth, gaps, and other problems can often be corrected without braces. Dental bonding, porcelain veneers, and other methods can be used for this purpose with very satisfying results.
Can I fill out my new patient forms before I arrive?
Yes. We will be happy to provide you with the new patient forms prior to your first appointment. You can fill them out when you have time and bring them with you.
What about payment and insurance?
You will pay the fee for our services at the time you receive them, and we will file your insurance claim for you electronically. If the insurance company requires additional information, we can provide it, expediting the payment of the reimbursement directly to you. We have found that this method regularly produces quick results.
How do I start?
The best way to start is by talking to someone who understands the process. Call our office, and our new patient facilitator will explain that if you’re interested in cosmetic dentistry, we’ll schedule you for a complimentary consultation. At this appointment, we will take photos of your face and teeth, and you will have a chance to discuss what you would like to change with Dr. Gavrilos. Or you may be ready for a full exam appointment, which will take about an hour. Before this exam, you’ll meet with Dr. Gavrilos for a pre-clinical interview, and we’ll gather documentation of all your previous dental treatment. Then we’ll do a full examination to check your head and neck, do a cancer screening, and check for periodontal disease and other conditions. Once all this diagnostic information has been gathered, we’ll create a treatment plan for you.