Friday, December 23, 2011

Canker Sores (Aphthous ulcers) Laser Therapy Treatment

What is an Cold Sore & Aphthous Ulcer?

An aphthous ulcer also known as a canker sore, presents as a painful open sore inside the mouth. Canker sores do not appear to be caused by viruses or bacteria, although an allergy to a type of bacterium commonly found in the mouth may trigger them in some people. The sores may be an allergic reaction to certain foods. Aphthous ulcers can affect people of any age.

Emotional stress and local trauma or injury to the mouth, such as sharp metal braces, brushing with hard toothbrushes, citrus fruits and hot foods can lead to canker sores. Smoking and dentures can also contribute to the problem. Other possible causes of canker sores include illnesses in which the immune system causes swelling or from autoimmune disorders. Female sex hormones also apparently play a role in causing canker sores.

 Laser Therapy TreatmentLaser Therapy is the most effective, giving immediate pain relief and causing the ulcer to heal in 24-72 hours. Pain relief is immediate and lasting. The ulcers heal in two to four days.

Avoiding known triggers.
A healthy diet with vitamin supplementation is recommended.
Excellent oral hygiene, including use of antibacterial rinses (Rx chlorhexidine or OTC Listerine), has been shown to reduce frequency of attacks.
Reducing stress is important as well.


Thursday, December 1, 2011


Bruxism is the clenching or grinding of the teeth that often occurs while a person is sleeping.
The symptoms of bruxism are:  
  • A sore, tired jaw
  • Difficulty in opening and closing your mouth
  • Sensitive teeth
  • Headaches or earaches
  • Pain in your jaw joints
  • Possibly no symptoms   

Bruxism can cause dental problems    

When you brux, the force on your teeth is many times greater than during normal chewing.
These forces can cause:
  • Flattened or worn-down teeth
  • Loss of tooth enamel near the gumline
  • Fractured or loose teeth
  • Damage to the jawbone or jaw joints

Treating bruxism

    Thermal Plastic Nightguard

Though all of the causes of bruxism are not know, stress is often a factor. If this is the case, a variety of stress reduction techniques may be recommended. We may also recommend medication to temporarily reduce stress and relieve pain.

Sometimes, missing teeth, worn teeth, spaces between teeth, or teeth that are out of alignment may cause grinding and clenching. In this case, bridges, crowns, equilibration, orthodontics, or other dental treatments can often restore your bite and eliminate grinding and clenching.

A common and effective treatment for stopping the damage caused by bruxism is the use of a nightguard. This is a plastic device that fits over your top or bottom teeth and protects your teeth by absorbing the forces caused by grinding. A custom nightguard, made from models of your teeth, usually offers the most effective and comfortable protection.

No matter what is causing your bruxism, it's important to treatm it early on to prevent damage and restore harmony to your mouth.


Thursday, November 17, 2011


A Veneer is a thin shell of porcelain or plastic that is bonded to a tooth to improve its color and shape. A veneer generally covers only the front and top of a tooth. Veneers can be used to close spaces between teeth, lengthen small or misshapen teeth, or whiten stained or dark teeth. When teeth are chipped or beginning to wear, veneers can protect them from damage and restore their original appearance.

How do we restore teeth with veneers?

It takes two or more appointments to restore teeth with veneers. During the first appointment, we shape and roughen the teeth. We then take impressions of your teeth, which we use to make precise working models of your mouth. It's on these models that we artistically craft veneers to fit the prepared teeth.

During the second appointment we clean and polish the prepared teeth. Then we use an adhesive to bond the veneers to the teeth. A harmless, high-intensity light hardens the adhesive. Once in place, veneers virtually become part of the teeth. You can use them like you would your own teeth because the bond is extremely strong. The final result is beautiful and natural-looking teeth.



Thursday, October 27, 2011

Periodontal Disease and Cardiovascular Health

Researchers have discovered that if you have periodontal disease, you may have an increased risk of coronary heart disease, stroke, and infective endocarditis.

What is periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease is an infection of the teeth, gums, and bone that surrounds your teeth. It's caused by the bacteria that live in plaque, the sticky film of food and bacteria that forms constantly on your teeth. The bacteria infect the tooth roots and cause pockets of infection to form in the gums. This results in red and swollen gums that bleed when you brush or floss.

The connection to cardiovascular health

Even with early periodontal disease, bleeding gums can create an open doorway that allows harmful bacteria to enter your bloodstream. More advanced periodontal disease can be even worse. It can be compared to a nine-square-inch open wound around your teeth, offering significant opportunity for harmful bacteria to enter your blood.

Research indicates that the bacteria associated with periodontal disease may cause inflammation in the arteries. This inflammation could lead to the buildup of fatty deposits and the formation of blood clots that can block your arteries and even trigger a heart attack.

These deposits may also build up in the carotid arteries in your neck. In serious cases, if these fat deposits break apart and are carried away in your bloodstream, they can lodge in your brain, block vessel, and cause a stroke.

Additionally, some studies have also shown that when plaque bacteria enter the bloodstream through infected gums, you may develop a heart condition call infective endocarditis. This is potentially fatal bacteria infection that inflames the sac around the heart, the valves of the heart, ant the heart muscle itself.

So as you can see, it's vital to your overall health, as well as your oral health, to keep your gums healthy. If we determine that you have periodontal disease, we'll see you frequent professional cleanings and recare appointments, and we'll work with you to create a suitable oral hygiene routine.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

CEREC Crowns & Partial Crowns, One-visit dentistry

Technology today is changing our everyday lives. Many people, however, aren’t aware that technology also is impacting dentistry in new and exciting ways. Cutting-edge innovations in dental instruments are requiring less time in the dental chair, causing less discomfort and creating satisfying results. One breakthrough instrument, called CEREC, allows dentists to quickly restore damaged teeth with natural-colored ceramic fillings, saving patients time and inconvenience in one appointment.

How does the instrument work?

CEREC uses CAD/CAM (Computer Aided Design/Computer Aided Manufacturing) technology, incorporating a camera, computer and milling machine in one instrument. The dentist uses a special camera to take an accurate picture of the damaged tooth. This optical impression is transferred and displayed on a color computer screen, where the dentist uses CAD technology to design the restoration. Then CAM takes over and automatically creates the restoration while the patient waits. Finally, the dentist bonds the new restoration to the surface of the old tooth.

What does this innovation mean for a patient?

A tooth-colored restoration means no more silver fillings discoloring smiles. The restoration is natural-looking, compatible with tissue in the mouth, anti-abrasive and plaque-resistant. Dentists no longer need to create temporaries or take impressions and send them to a lab. Because of this, the traditional second visit has been eliminated.

The CEREC has over two decades of clinical research and documentation to support the technology. The restorations have been proven precise, safe and effective.

                                                          THE CAD/CAM COMPUTER
                                                            THE MILLING UNIT

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Importance of Regular Dental Exams

Because of our commitment to preventive dental care, we recommend a checkup every six months. Most dental problems start small, but then they go through a rapid growth phase. Regular checkups enable us to catch these problems before they become serious conditions:
  • Plaque buildup
  • Gingivitis
  • Cavities
  • Cracked or leaking fillings
  • Bad bite
Serious conditions begin as treatable problems

Plaque, which is a sticky film of food and bacteria that forms constantly on your teeth, can harden in as little at 24 hours to become tartar. Even with proper brushing and flossing, most people aren't able to remove all the plaque every day. The result is tartar buildup.

Plaque and tartar buildup are the main cause of gingivitis, which is an inflammation that make gums swell and bleed. Gingivitis is reversible, but if it's not treated, it can lead to periodontal disease, which is an infection that causes receding gums, bone loss, and sometimes tooth loss.

The bacteria in plaque also cause tooth decay. A small cavity can easily be fixed, but if it grows into the softer inner dentin layer of the tooth it can reach the pulp chamber very quickly, causing pain and further infection.

Failed fillings can also lead to more decay. Unless it's treated early, decay will most likely lead to a need for root canal treatment and crowns.

Misaligned or missing teeth can contribute to problems with the jaw joint, such as pain and soreness, difficulty in opening and closing your mouth, earaches.

Regular checkups allow us to treat problems early

To keep these dental problems from becoming serious, we recommend twice yearly checkups. Regular cleanings enable us to keep tartar from accumulating on your teeth. During your regular visits, we will also perform a thorough exam to check your gums, measure the bone levels around your teeth, look for cavities, check your restorations, and examine your bite.

Regular exams are the best way to eliminate the growth phase of dental problems, and minimize the time and money you spend in the dental chair.

Copyright 2005. Patterson Dental Supply, Inc. All rights reserved. #PD 1001 10/31/04

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Dr. Daniel R. Pestana DDS, Walnut Creek, CA cosmetic, Implant and Family Dentist: Why replace a missing tooth?

Dr. Daniel R. Pestana DDS, Walnut Creek, CA cosmetic, Implant and Family Dentist: Why replace a missing tooth?: When you lose a tooth, the biting forces change on the teeth next to the space, which could cause them to shift. Opposing teeth may...

Why replace a missing tooth?

         When you lose a tooth, the biting forces change on the teeth next to the space, which could cause them to shift. Opposing teeth may even begin to extrude out of the socket, which means they too could eventually be lost. As your bite changes, it gets more difficult to chew your food, and you may suffer damage to your jaw joint. It’s also much harder to clean teeth that have shifted; harmful plaque and tartar collect in the new hard-to-reach places created by shifting, causing tooth decay and periodontal disease.

 For all these reasons, it’s critical that we replace a lost tooth. An excellent option for replacing a missing tooth is an artificial tooth secured by a dental implant.
    Implants are titanium cylinders that are surgically placed in your jaw to serve as artificial tooth roots. Attaching a replacement tooth to an implant allows us to avoid placing a bridge. Bridges require that we cut down the adjacent natural teeth, and that weakens them substantially.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Teeth Whitening: Teeth Whitening

Teeth Whitening: Teeth Whiteninig: In office teeth whitening makes it possible to achieve a whiter, brighter smile in as little as one hour. A special light is shined onto th...

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Teeth Whiteninig

In office teeth whitening makes it possible to achieve a whiter, brighter smile in as little as one hour. A special light is shined onto the teeth after they have been coated with a whitening gel. The light works with the gel to release oxygen. The oxygen penetrates the outer enamel layer and then the dentin layer of the teeth, bleaching away stains and discolored areas.

The in office teeth whitening quickly brightens your smile. Once we have determined that the in office whitening is right for you, we may begin by thoroughly removing any plaque and tartar from your teeth. Then We'll start the whitening process with protective glasses, a lip retractor, and a cream or lotion to shield your eyes, lips, and face.

We'll then isolate the teeth and protect your gums by applying a special protective material to the gum tissue or by placing a rubber dam.Next, we paint the whitening gel onto your teeth, while you relax in the chair, we shine a light or laser onto the teeth. We may repeat this cycle several times.

Since every case is different, we carefully evaluate your individual results. Your new smile will lighten, on average, about 6 to 10 shades. We may sometimes recommed a flouride treatment, additional bleaching at home, or another session here in our office. We'll also give you instructions for taking care of your new smile and for handling any post-whitening sensitivity.

Power whitening is a safe and effective technology that can help give you a beautiful new smile, all in one appointment.
In Office Teeth Whitening special!
Dr. Daniel R. Pestana D.D.S., (925)945-8006, Walnut Creek, CA 94598