CROWNS
Crowns are full coverage restorations that are used to cover a tooth that is likely to break, or is too broken down to be restored with a filling. They are most commonly done after root canal treatment, or when a large filling wears out. The larger the hole made by a cavity that has to be treated, the more likely a crown will be needed. Even after a filling is put in a large cavity, a tooth is more likely to break. Keep in mind that the jaw muscles are the strongest in the human body. Teeth are subjected to tremendous pressures. Crowns ride over the weakened tooth, providing strength and protecting the tooth against breakage. A broken or cracked tooth is a far more serious matter and much more difficult to treat. Crowns prevent this, as well as making for a nice smile.

We are pleased to offer our patients CEREC restoration services - a superior method of creating precisely-designed, color-matched and highly durable ceramic restorations right in our practice.  From simple fillings to full crowns to veneers, CEREC delivers the results you need in a single appointment. 
 
Why CEREC?
  • Single visit convenience - no temporaries
  • No uncomfortable impression trays
  • Beautiful esthetics - color matched ceramic
  • Natural looking smile
  • Clinically proven - millions of successful restorations worldwide
  • Enamel-like materials - natural look and feel
 
 

How the CEREC process works:

  • DIGITAL IMPRESSION
After examining the tooth and determining the course of treatment, we will prepare your tooth for restoration, similarly to traditional treatment methods.  Your prepared tooth will be coated with a safe, tasteless powder.  CEREC then uses a state-of-the-art digital 3D camera to create an optical impression.  This digital image replaces the physical impression required in traditional procedures.  No more long waits while a tray of impression goop hardens in your mouth.
 
  • COMPUTER AIDED DESIGN
State-of-the-art CAD software allows us to design every precise detail of your restoration with the accuracy you've come to expect from us.  The software allows us to customize the shape of the restoration to exactly fit your specified clinical needs.
 
  • MILL AND PLACE
While you wait, exact design specifications are sent to our on-site milling machine to create your restoration.  About 15 minutes later, your all-ceramic, color-matched restoration is ready for placement.  Your new restoration is then fitted, polished and bonded for permanence.  Your tooth is restored back to its natural form, function and beauty.

ONLAYS
An onlay covers the biting surface and one or more cusps (the peaks of the tooth) with porcelain. It may be used to provide greater coverage for a tooth that has lost much of its biting surface when decay damages the surface between teeth.  Your dentist may recommend an onlay based on the extent of damage to the tooth.  Dr. Palmer will prepare the tooth by taking out the old filling or decay.  The remaining tooth is shaped to receive the restoration. This is  followed by digital impressions with the Cerec to design your porcelain restoration with precision and accuracy for a custom fit. Dr. Palmer then has the onlay milled in the on-site milling-machine. Your onlay will be permanently cemented to your tooth in the same appointment.
 

DENTURES
There are different types of dentures, but they share their common function. They replace teeth that have become loose or been lost due to bone loss. When bone loss around the roots of teeth is great enough to loosen them or let them fall out, it's time for dentures. Relax. No one enjoys losing their natural teeth, but you can still eat and talk regularly.

The entire mouth is examined and a determination is made as to which teeth will have to be removed, and which will remain. The loose teeth are then extracted. Dentures are fitted to go over or around whatever teeth remain in the mouth, depending on the type. There is an adjustment period after dentures are placed in the mouth, and it can take some getting used to. But once accustomed to the dentures, all the normal functionality and appearance return and one just carries on as usual. Often implants can used to further stabilize the dentures.

IMPLANTS
A dental implant is an option to replace a missing tooth. In this procedure, a small titanium shaft is surgically implanted into the bone and allowed to set. The bone grows around it forming a tight connection, which additionally slows or stops the bone loss that occurs when the root of a natural tooth is missing. Once the implant is firmly set in the mouth, the dentist then works to attach the replacement tooth onto the top of the shaft. This permanent solution has the advantages over bridge work that it does not stress the surrounding teeth for support, and, should the tooth wear out, another can simply be replaced on the shaft.

Implants can also be used as support as part of an implant bridge. This is an alternative to partial dentures, and has several advantages. First, there is no adjustment period to acclimatize the patient who, once the work is done, only feels teeth, not metal supports intruding into the mouth. Second, this slows the bone loss occasioned by missing teeth. Third, there is no discomfort or difficulty in eating. And, best of all, of course, they don't have to be taken out all the time.

We also offer mini dental implants. These implants are about half the diameter of traditional implants are used mainly to stabilize lower dentures. These implants can be placed in one appointment and be immediately used. The cost is 50-70% of standard dental implants. Call for a free consult.

ROOT CANAL TREATMENT
Root canal treatment (also referred to as root canal therapy or endodontic therapy) is made necessary when a cavity is allowed, through neglect, to reach all the way to this pulp. (Regular cleanings and checkups prevent and detect problems early) Sometimes deep restorations or trauma to a tooth may cause the nerve to be damaged to the point it needs root canal therapy, also. Once this occurs the pulp becomes infected, and can even extend through the root tip and begin to eat away at the surrounding bone (this is an abscess). By the time the pulp is infected it must be treated, and cannot heal on its own. It can even weaken the entire immune system. This is dangerous, not to mention very painful. Symptoms that the pulp has become infected may include sensitivity to hot/cold or sweets, pain, swelling, pain to biting or pressure, and a bad taste in the mouth. Sometimes, however, no symptoms are apparent and the person is unaware of any problem until a checkup.

A root canal is then performed to clean out the infected tooth pulp, and disinfect the canals of the tooth. The only other treatment would be to extract the tooth. Once the infection is resolved, the canal(s) are filled in to prevent any further infection. Usually a core build-up and crown is recommended for restoring a tooth that has had root canal therapy.

BRIDGES
This is an option for filling the space created by a missing tooth. It is formed to look like the missing tooth, and it takes its place in the mouth. The sides of a bridge use the two surrounding teeth for support, hence the name. A bridge replaces the missing tooth, both functionally and cosmetically. Bridge work is as much an art as it is an exact science. The materials used may be gold alloys, porcelain bonded to metal alloy, or all ceramic material. The choice of material depends on requirements for strength, wear, and/or esthetics.

It is important that a missing tooth be replaced as soon as possible for several reasons. If not treated the teeth surrounding the gap begin to shift inward, creating a whole chain reaction of bad things. Teeth use their neighbors for support, and, with one missing, they start to "fall." As this worsens the bite changes in response to the pressure. This can eventually result in problems with the entire jaw, e.g. TMJ. The surrounding teeth deteriorate and it is just a matter of time before they, too, are lost. Gum disease becomes a serious problem, with the difficulty of treatment increasing as the neglect continues. 

TMJ TREATMENTS
TMJ stands for temporal-mandibular joint. Temporal, as in temple area of skull; mandibular as in mandible, or lower jaw; joint as in it's where the head and jaw meet. Problems in this joint may be caused by a misalignment of the teeth, trauma, or excess muscle tension. Aside from the two bones that meet there, cartilage buffers them and five muscles are involved in the area. If something goes wrong a good deal of trouble can result.

Problems in this area can cause:

  • Headaches
  • Earaches
  • Trouble/soreness in opening and closing the mouth
  • Clicking or popping of the jaw
  • Pain in the jaw muscles
  • Soreness in the area, sometimes extending to the face

Dental treatments for the condition can include replacing missing teeth, moving teeth, adjusting the bite, filling gaps between teeth, etc. There is no one solution that is right for all cases. Sometimes a plastic mouthpiece is used to prevent clenching or grinding that is contributing to the problem. If untreated and taken to extremes, surgery may be required to repair a badly damaged joint.

LASER
We use modern laser technology to provide a wide range of fast and virtually painless treatments.  And in the fight against periodontal disease, this will help to reduce the progress of the disease itself.  A laser can provide treatment with almost no bleeding and less scar tissue formation.  It also improves post-operative healing, and generally requires no sutures.

ORAVERSE
Dr. Palmer wants you to have the most comfortable experience possible.  It's a commitment that begins when you walk in the door and extends long after you leave.  Now there is an advancement that redefines this possibility if you're one of the many who dislike lingering numbness from local anesthesia.  OraVerse rapidly reverses the effects of your local dental anesthetic after routine dental procedures.  It is scientifically proven to accelerate the return or normal sensation in the lip and tongue.  A return of function such as speaking, smiling, and drinking allows you to get back to your day.  OraVerse is proven effective and safe for adults and children ages 6 and older.

ISOLITE
The  Isolite system provides several benefits:

  1. Increased visibility. By lighting the patient's oral cavity from within the mouth, Isolite provides a unique, shadowless illumination that benefits both practitioner and patient.
  2. Quick, reliable isolation. Isolite is the only dental device that delivers continuous retraction, protection and aspiration.
  3. Faster procedures. Dentists, dental assistants and hygienists using Isolite are reducing procedure times by 20-50%.
  4. Better ergonomics.  
  5. Increased comfort for patients. The mouthpiece gives them a place to rest their jaw and they no longer worry about their tongue or cheek being injured. They can relax!

Contact Us

James C. Palmer, DDS

(318) 927-6152
729 West Main Street Homer, LA 71040