When Wayward Teeth Take A Crooked Path

Lafayette orthodontics

Malocclusion is dental-speak for crooked teeth. When you consider all the different ways numerous 3-dimensional objects can be positioned, it is not surprising that malocclusion presents itself in numerous forms. The number of configurations may surprise you:

When teeth slant forward, it is called upper protrusion, but you may have heard this abnormality referred to as “buck teeth.”

An overbite takes place when the upper front teeth come down too far over the lower teeth when the mouth is closed. An underbite is the reverse abnormality—the upper front teeth close farther back than the lower front teeth. An open bite refers to a bite in which the upper don’t overlap the lower teeth. This can happen on the whole bite or just one side.

Tooth rotation is one of the most prevalent forms of malocclusion. Rotated teeth appear as if they are twisting out of place. Tooth rotation can create the illusion of uneven coloring because of the way light reflects off the face of teeth.

When the upper and lower palate are offset to the point where the upper teeth close onto the wrong side of the lower teeth, it is termed a cross bite.

In some rare cases – called transposition – teeth erupt in spots where other teeth should be. For example, a canine (pointed tooth) comes in where an incisor (front biting tooth) should be. Can you imagine trying to chew if your teeth have been playing musical chairs?

Many people with crooked teeth are too self-conscious to smile, but aesthetics are not the only issue at play. Crooked teeth can increase the risk of tooth decay, tooth damage, and TMD temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder. Toddlers with crooked teeth may have difficulty learning how to speak, and if they can’t chew meat and raw vegetables thoroughly, they may miss out on necessary nutrients due to a limited diet.

If you or your child has crooked teeth or a misaligned bite, we invite you to schedule an extensive examination straightaway.

Contact Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry:

720-862-3630

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1140 W South Boulder Rd Ste 201
Lafayette, Colorado
80026


Are Dental Veneers Reversible?

prepless veneers

When individuals seek cosmetic dentistry to improve their smile, porcelain veneers are a celebrated option. Unlike a crown that completely covers the tooth, a veneer is a super thin layer of a very heavy-duty porcelain, composite bonding, or ceramic. When bonded to a tooth, the veneer creates a natural, translucent, and new surface. It improves the appearance of the visible portion of your tooth instantly.

To begin, you will need a consultation with your dentist, who should have skill in cosmetic procedures. You should think about what you do not like about your smile and confirm how you want it improved. Veneers may not be ideal for you. Other cosmetic dental procedures are available that may be a better fit for the characteristics you wish to change.

Porcelain veneers can fix many minor to moderate issues, including the size, shape, and color of your teeth. Gaps between teeth can be filled, as well as the lengthening or shortening of teeth to complete your pleasing smile.

Your dentist will also discuss both types of veneers: traditional veneers and prepless veneers. Before a traditional veneer is put on the tooth, the dentist first removes a very thin layer of enamel. Enamel cannot be replaced, which is one reason this protocol is irreversible.

The second treatment is called ‘no-prep’ or ‘prepless.’ With this type, enamel removal is often not needed. When no enamel is removed, the treatment can be reversible. However, this treatment plan has specific criteria.

Furthermore, it is possible to use both types of veneers for multiple teeth, depending on the condition of each tooth.

Your dentist will help you analyze your unique needs and counsel you on how to reach your goals. Once you and your dentist have created a dental plan, your dentist will work with a laboratory and dental team to assure everything is carried out as outlined.

If you do not have a dentist, we invite you to visit our practice or call 720-862-3630 today to schedule a cosmetic dental consultation.

Contact Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry:

720-862-3630

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1140 W South Boulder Rd Ste 201
Lafayette, Colorado
80026


Unexpected Stress? Don’t Forget Your Smile

Boulder County cosmetic dental and tooth implants

When you suddenly have to juggle extra balls, some are bound to get dropped. Perhaps you are going through a divorce or became the caregiver for an ailing parent. Perhaps you took on a second job or started night school to earn an advanced degree.

Not every stressor is negative. A new baby, marriage, career, or move can be exciting but overwhelming. It’s okay – and sometimes helpful – to drop some of the balls. You can probably let another parent take over room mother duties for a few weeks, forego a haircut, or skip poker night until things calm down.

When life hands you extra challenges it is easy to get lax about oral hygiene. Sometimes you feel too exhausted to brush or floss and skip regular check-ups and cleanings. Dr. West wants to remind you to look at the possible consequences of neglecting your smile.
1. Tooth decay
2. Gum disease
2. Tooth and gum pain
3. Bad breath
4. Infection
5. Tooth loss

Your plate is already full – you don’t want to add poor oral health and the associated expense and inconvenience required to treat advanced troubles.

Let the car go unwashed for a few weeks. Record your favorite show to watch later when things slow down. Postpone that kitchen remodel. But keep your smile healthy – it really will make your life easier, healthier, and happier.

Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry in Lafayette provides gentle, comprehensive dental care for the whole family. Our services include:
dental crowns
teeth whitening
sedation dentistry
Invisalign clear braces

Dr. West is a member of The Crown Council. If you haven’t seen a dentist in a while, we invite you to call us at 720-862-3630 and schedule an exam and cleaning. Our thoughtful team will make you feel comfortable and relaxed. There is no need to feel ashamed about plaque build-up or a cavity. We completely understand how stressful life can get and love helping our Lafayette area patients get back on track.

Center for Advanced Dental Care

Contact Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry:

720-862-3630

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1140 W South Boulder Rd Ste 201
Lafayette, Colorado
80026


Don’t Bite The Dentist!

cosmetic dentistry Boulder County

Bite down hard, but not on Dr. West’s hand!

Do you find that biting down hard is painful or awkward? There are ways to find the source of the trouble and there are ways to make it right.

Let Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry in Lafayette, Colorado help you with that everyday chewing luxury most of us take for granted. Let us get you back to chewing pleasurably every meal of the day.

As we examine your mouth and survey the damage, we will remain gentle and forthright. We can guarantee an outstanding view of our ceiling. And if you haven’t already, come check out our excellent patient care. Call now while you’re thinking about it: 720-862-3630

We, of course, offer cosmetic dentistry. We also encourage our Boulder friends to consider dental implants as an option with us.

When it comes to dental restoration, improving your smile, instilling confidence, offering gentle care, and providing affordable cosmetic dentistry Instead of the dentist, chew on that, Lafayette!

Contact Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry:

720-862-3630

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1140 W South Boulder Rd Ste 201
Lafayette, Colorado
80026


Say Goodbye To Old Amalgam Fillings

white fillings Boulder

Remember what your teeth looked like before you had your first cavity? When you opened your mouth to laugh or yawn, those with you could see only pearly white molar surfaces. (Unless, of course, you had been munching Oreos.)

If you are like many adults, you started developing cavities fairly young and started receiving the ubiquitous silver amalgam fillings that were used by family dentists. As the years went by, two fillings became three. If you didn’t drink fluoridated water, three fillings may have became four. Now when you open wide, others see a mouthful of metal.

Fortunately,those with silver amalgam fillings can regain the smile of their youth. The replacement of silver fillings with composite tooth-colored fillings is a relatively inexpensive cosmetic dental procedure available at Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry that can transform a smile just as dramatically as more extensive cosmetic dental treatment.

Composite fillings available at Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry in Lafayette are comprised of a mixture of glass or quartz and resin which creates a natural tooth-colored material. They are strong and durable when bonded to the tooth with adhesive.

Hopefully, you don’t have a new cavity. But if you do, you can start off with a white composite filling. In addition to the cosmetic advantages over silver, the preparation requires the removal of less healthy tooth structure. A conservative (as possible) restoration leaves you with more of nature’s superior dental material — your own enamel and dentin.

If you would like to improve your smile by replacing silver-mercury fillings, schedule a cosmetic dental consultation today by calling 720-862-3630. We will develop a treatment plan to address all areas of concern. When you have your teeth whitened in combination with silver filling replacement, you’ll be extra-thrilled with your new unforgettable smile.

Ask us about dental crowns, prepless veneers, sedation dentistry and Invisalign clear braces. We look forward to meeting you. Call us today at 720-862-3630.

Center for Advanced Dental Care

Contact Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry:

720-862-3630

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1140 W South Boulder Rd Ste 201
Lafayette, Colorado
80026


The Unsung Heroes Of Dentistry

forensic dentistry Lafayette

In today’s post, we will veer a bit off the beaten path, so to speak, and review a distinguished dental specialty; forensic dentistry. The official term for the use of dentistry in criminal cases and post mortem identification is forensic odontology. These specialists are rarely recognized but play a vital role in crime and disaster investigations.

Dental X-rays, dentures, and bite marks are all used to provide clues about the victim’s identity and/or the manner of death. A person’s teeth are as singular as fingerprints and can often sustain forces such as fire, explosions, submersion in water, and natural decay without being destroyed.

Identifying One Victim
Identifying a victim through dental records is aided immensely when authorities have narrowed down a group of suspected victims to just a few people (or, ideally, just one) and can consult the dentists who had treated them. When the identity is totally unknown, a forensic dentist combs other databases such as those maintained by the armed forces and prisons.3

“Dental identifications are so much quicker and so much less expensive than DNA.” -Dr. Mark Bernstein, dentist and forensic dental consultant1

Identifying Hundreds of Victims
While identifying one victim of a homicide or accident can be fairly uncomplicated, natural disasters, plane crashes, and other large-scale tragedies are exponentially more complicated.

According to Dr. Jeffrey Burkes, chief forensic dental consultant for the 9/11 attacks, over 140 dentists worked to identify the fragments of remains that were recovered from the scene of the terrorist attacks. The identification effort was an extremely painstaking and complicated operation. First, the dentists were assigned to one of four teams. The Go Team gathered evidence from the scene, the Antemortem Team analyzed existing dental records of supposed victims, the Postmortem Team X-rayed the salvaged dental evidence, and the Comparison Team compared the X-rays of the remains of unnamed individuals to the files of missing people deemed to have been at the scene.2

“Dentistry fulfills one of its most important social, moral, and professional obligations by applying its unique knowledge and expertise to the task of identifying countless persons who are tragic victims of fires, catastrophes, disasters, and homicides.”3

1Ashley Hayes, “How authorities identify a burned body,” CNN, February 13, 2013, http://www.cnn.com/2013/02/13/health/burned-body-id/, accessed February 20, 2017
2James Berry, Clayton Luz, Arlene Furlong, Craig Palmer, “Forensic Dentistry: Identifying the Victims of 9/11” Dental Practice Management, December 1, 2001,http://www.oralhealthgroup.com/features/forensic-dentistry-identifying-the-victims-of-9-11/, accessed February 20, 2017
3Dr. Vincent Funaro, “Charts, Radiographs, Study Models: A Forensic Trilogy, January 1, 2006, Dentistry Today, http://www.dentistrytoday.com/forensic-dentistry/1159-, accessed February 20, 2017

Contact Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry:

720-862-3630

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1140 W South Boulder Rd Ste 201
Lafayette, Colorado
80026


Missing Teeth? Dentures And Implants Restore Smiles

Missing Teeth In Lafayette? Dentures And Implants Restore Smiles

If you have had years of dental problems or are embarrassed by your teeth, our state-of-the-art dental care in a comfortable environment team at Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry will find the restorative dentistry procedure that’s right for you. You may be a candidate for complete or partial dentures or dental implants.

A removable replacement for missing teeth, dentures can be made in advance and positioned as soon as the natural teeth are removed. Our dental lab creates dentures that look just like natural teeth: attractive, healthy teeth.

If you still have some healthy, natural teeth, you can benefit from dentures without having your healthy teeth extracted.

Partial dentures fill in the gaps, replacing missing teeth to complete a smile. Partial dentures can prevent natural teeth from moving. Often, dentists can complete these procedures in one day.

Many dental insurance providers cover most or all of the cost of dentures. Contact us and we’ll find out if your Colorado dental insurance covers dentures.

Another alternative for those with missing teeth is to receive dental implants. A dental implant is a permanent tooth restoration that is anchored into the jawbone, actually replacing both the root and crown of the tooth. Dental implants have many advantages, such as preventing jaw bone recession which can occur when natural teeth are removed. However, not all Lafayette dentistry patients are good candidates for implants. Call Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry at 720-862-3630 for a dental implant consultation.

Dental implants can also be used to anchor a removable denture. The denture is ‘snapped on’ or attached to the implants for no-slip confidence.

The combination denture/implant smile restoration solution is being used successfully by many dentists. It is usually more affordable than dental implant replacements for several natural teeth.

Replacing missing teeth will benefit your appearance and your health, improving your ability to eat and speak. If you are embarrassed to smile or laugh, it’s time to bring back your beautiful smile!

To learn more or to ask about dental financing options, contact our Lafayette office today!

We provide advanced general and cosmetic dentistry. Ask us about sedation dentistry, prepless veneers, dental crowns, and Invisalign clear braces.

 

Contact Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry: 720-862-3630

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1140 W South Boulder Rd Ste 201
Lafayette, Colorado
80026

 


Think You May Have A Cavity?

white dental fillings Lafayette

Hello, friends of Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry! Teeth take a lot of tender, loving care. And even when we do our best to practice daily dental hygiene, bacteria can still sneak in and cause tooth decay – the common cold of oral health. We have been filling cavities for years and would be happy to take care of any cavities or other dental troubles you are experiencing.

Few men and women go their entire life without getting a cavity. Unfortunately for some children, a cavity is the first health problem they experience in childhood.

Cavities are caused when bacteria, acid, food debris, and saliva combine to form plaque.

Plaque then clings to your teeth and the acid in the plaque starts to dissolve the enamel. The result is a hole in your tooth which can also be accompanied by a pain.

Because of how quick and effective dental fillings are, they are one of the best options to correct a cavity. Dr. West uses top-of-the-line instruments to examine the size and severity of the cavity and then determine exactly what type of filling is required. We offer white fillings that are as durable as traditional metal fillings and match your teeth precisely.

Once a decision is made on what filling you’ll need, Dr. West will complete the necessary preparations for the procedure. When a filling is carried out the right way, it can last for decades! That’s why we make sure the process is done with accuracy.

A filling isn’t a “set it and forget it” treatment. A tooth that has received a filling still needs to be properly cared for because cavities can occur in the surrounding tooth structure if bacteria is allowed to flourish.

Checkups are a key part of caring for your teeth and there’s no better place to receive checkups than at Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry. We have a comfortable, state-of-the-art office and a friendly, professional staff! That’s why so many people in Lafayette have trusted us with their teeth since 1998.

 

 

Contact Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry: 720-862-3630

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1140 W South Boulder Rd Ste 201
Lafayette, Colorado
80026

 


The Health And Beauty Consequences Of Missing Teeth

Boulder County tooth implants

Today’s post focuses on missing teeth and bone health.

Our teeth have many important functions. We need them to chew our food, talk, and smile. But have you ever considered their role in holding up your face? When we lose teeth, the bone around the site of the extraction begins to shrink. This, in turn, causes our facial muscles to sink in and collapse.

Bone Metabolism

We sometimes think of bone as a solid mass, unlike the softer tissues in our body. In reality, below the seemingly rock-hard surface, bone tissue is full of small holes – kind of like a sponge. In the interior bone tissue, the bone is constantly regenerating itself. This important process is sometimes called “bone metabolism.” In the jaw bone, the movement of the teeth stimulate this process of rebuilding. When the tooth is gone, the bone starts to shrink as blood flow is reduced.

People with missing teeth not only have an unappealing gap in their smile, they begin to look older because of the bone recession and eventual facial sagging.  It is not simply an issue of attractiveness – it poses serious health dangers. It may become difficult to chew food, making it harder to get adequate nutrition. Mental health can also be affected when a patient with missing teeth loses confidence in themself or withdraws from social situations because they are self-conscious about their smile.

Dental Implants Can Prevent Bone Recession

Modern dentistry to the rescue! Dental implant technology provides a tooth restoration solution that maintains healthy bone metabolism while providing near-normal tooth function. For patients missing many (or all) of their teeth, it may not be possible to replace every single tooth with an implant. In many of these cases, dental implants can be used to provide an anchor for a partial denture.

What if your bone has shrunken so much that there is not enough to support an implant? You may be a candidate for bone augmentation or bone grafting. This procedure is routinely handled with success.

If you are missing teeth, don’t resign yourself to dentures. Tooth implants can provide a brilliant smile! Schedule a consultation with Dr. Gordon West by calling 720-862-3630.

 

Contact Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry: 720-862-3630

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1140 W South Boulder Rd Ste 201
Lafayette, Colorado
80026

 


Want To Perk Up Your Smile?

Lafayette teeth whitening

To improve your smile, all you need to do is pick up the phone and make an appointment with Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry.

A Smile You Want to Show Off

A whiter smile can change your life dramatically. Many of our patients feel more self-assured in personal and professional settings with their new, whiter smiles. White teeth brighten your smile and give you a reason to show them off. Who doesn’t need another reason to smile?

We can help you beautify your teeth through a number of solutions that range in cost. The least pricey teeth whitening treatments are those that you can do yourself at home. The quickest and easiest are the in-office professional teeth bleaching treatments.

If you are interested in a brilliant smile, give us a call at 720-862-3630 to make a teeth whitening appointment. The hardest part will be dialing the phone, and in no time we’ll have you smiling bright.

More Problems? We Have Solutions

Perhaps your teeth have additional issues besides dull color. We can help you with all types of problems including chipped teeth, crooked teeth, uneven gumline, and even missing teeth.

The state-of-the-art dental care in a comfortable environment team of dental professionals at Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry provide the full spectrum of general and cosmetic dental services including sedation dentistry, prepless veneers and dental crowns.

 

 

Contact Gordon West DDS – Aesthetic & General Dentistry: 720-862-3630

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1140 W South Boulder Rd Ste 201
Lafayette, Colorado
80026