Montclair Plaza Dental Group
Dental Concerns Montclair, CA

Dental Concerns & Your Oral Wellness

Maintaining a good daily oral hygiene routine and visiting the dentist at least twice a year can protect your smile from dental health concerns. Keeping your teeth and gums healthy through preventative dentistry helps support long-term oral wellness and promotes a better quality of life and boost in self-confidence.

Our entire dental care team help our patients understand their oral health through age-appropriate patient education. We take the time to discuss your cosmetic goals and oral concerns in order to build a comprehensive overview of your smile. We combine state of the art dental technology, personalized consultation and thorough oral health exams to build tailored treatment plans to maintain and enhance your oral health.

No matter how minor a dental concern may seem it is important to address it as soon as possible. Common dental issues such as cracked or crooked teeth often trigger secondary dental health complications when left untreated. Patients who maintain the health of their smile through routine and preventative dentistry are less likely to develop complex dental concerns such as tooth or bone loss.

Treatments for Your Dental Concerns

Our dental staff offer many treatments to correct your dental concerns. After a thorough examination, your dentist will discuss with you the available options, and recommend what we believe to be the most comfortable and least invasive treatment. We offer personalized dental care and will work you to build a treatment plans that fits within your budget, complements your lifestyle, and meets your goals and needs. Dental concerns can range from minor tooth decay and gingivitis to complex concerns related to the bite and missing teeth. Whatever your dental health needs, we offer advanced care in our Montclair, CA dentist office.

About Sedation Dentistry

Without routine visits to the dentist office, patients can be faced with many dental concerns. Dental anxiety and fear of the dentist is one of the leading factors in poor oral health among adults today. Fortunately we are able to offer our patients sedation dentistry when they are faced with the reality that they will need dental treatments to fix their problems. Sedation dentistry makes it possible for patients to receive the dental care they need without fear or anxiety. More procedures can be performed in a single visit, saving the patient time and money. We offer oral conscious sedation and nitrous oxide. At your consultation, we will discuss your issues and determine which method will work best for you.

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Bleeding Gums Treatment
Do your gums bleed when you brush or floss your teeth?

Bleeding gums are a common symptom of a bacterial infection known as periodontal disease. Gum disease is a progressive disease that goes through several phases of development. Gum disease frequently goes undiagnosed until the later stages when the teeth and gums have already become compromised.

We screen for gum disease during routine dental health exams as part of our comprehensive oral health care. Catching gum disease in its earliest stage can allow for conservative treatment options like a deep cleaning procedure called scaling and root planing. More advanced gum disease may require more extensive treatment such as laser therapy or oral surgery.

Do I have Gum Disease?

Gum disease is a very common dental concern. Nearly 70% of American Adults have some stage of gum disease. Patients of all ages could develop gum disease, but it is most prevalent in adult patients. Gum disease is progressive and worsens if left untreated.

Gum disease is a leading cause of tooth loss. Treating gum disease is essential for the prevention of secondary oral health complications. Gum disease causes gums to become inflamed. Swollen and sensitive, the gum line can peel back from the teeth leaving roots exposed, allowing teeth to shift or fall out. Patients should seek professional medical attention for gum disease at the first signs of the disease.

Gum Disease Prevention
Gum disease is most commonly caused by years of poor oral hygiene.

The best way to manage gum disease is through preventative measures such as routine dental health exams and good at home oral hygiene. Brushing twice a day and flossing at least once removes food debris from the teeth and helps to keep oral bacteria in check. Routine professional teeth cleanings help to remove plaque and tartar buildup, the ideal breeding grounds for disease-causing bacteria. Biannual teeth cleanings also allow Dr. Srikureja to notice any early signs of gum disease providing for more effective treatment.

Our team is also trained in laser therapy. Laser therapy is a state of the art technology that in many cases can eliminate the need for gum surgery in advanced cases of periodontal disease. Laser therapy eliminates bacteria pockets and actually stimulates the natural healing process. Laser treatment is minimally invasive and requires no sutures or long downtimes.

During your routine dental exams, our dental care team can make personalized recommendations for improving your oral health. Our team can make suggestions on better brushing techniques, and may suggest anti-bacterial mouth rinses.

Illustration comparing periodontitis to a healthy tooth

Patients who have gum disease may experience:

Bleeding gums
Swollen, tender gums
White or red patches on their gums
Change in the fit of an oral appliance
Tooth sensitivity

Left unchecked disease-causing bacteria can enter the bloodstream. At this stage of periodontal disease patients are at a higher risk of developing systemic complications. Studies show that patients with advanced gum disease experience higher instances of severe medical conditions.

Gum disease is believed to increase the risk of:

Cardiovascular disease
Heart attacks
Crooked Teeth
Are my crooked teeth affecting my oral health?

For many patients, crooked teeth make them feel too embarrassed to smile. While crooked teeth can be a cosmetic concern, crooked teeth can also increase a patients risk of tooth decay, gum disease, and complex bite disorders.

Patients of all ages can benefit from straightening their crooked teeth. With advancements in modern dental and orthodontic technology, there are now more comfortable, faster and discreet options for straightening crooked teeth. Our team offers a range of orthodontic and cosmetic solutions for realigning a crooked smile.

Solutions for Crooked Teeth

Montclair Plaza Dental Office provides patients with comprehensive solutions to advanced dental concerns. We begin with a thorough oral health exam and bite analysis to help build a complete picture of the patient’s unique dental health. We consult one-on-one with each patient taking the time to listen to their personal goals and to answer any questions they may have. Together, our team and the patient build a personalized treatment plan that will address underlying issues and result in lasting, beautiful results.

Our practice is an Orthosnap provider. Orthosnap invisible braces uses a system of nearly invisible aligners to gradually shift teeth into proper alignment, bringing the bite and smile into a comfortable and aesthetic balance. There are many benefits to using invisible braces to straighten teeth. these benefits include:

Discreet treatment because the aligners are clear
Better oral health since they can be removed for regular brushing and flossing
More dietary choices because you will remove them to eat so there are no food restrictions
They offer teeth grinding protection

For patients with a crooked tooth that does not impact the function of the comfort of the bite, Dr. Ancona may recommend a cosmetic solution for restoring the aesthetic balance to the smile. To help achieve the appearance of a straight and beautiful smile, she may recommend:

Porcelain veneers: Dental veneers are thin, ceramic shells that are cemented to the front of the teeth masking any imperfection including crooked teeth.
Dental crown: Dental crowns are restorations that fit over the entire tooth like a cap. They can also hide any blemish but will require the tooth to be reduced.
Tooth bonding: Tooth bonding is an affordable way to hide any imperfection. It can be performed in a single visit. The bonding material is placed on the tooth and will be sculpted to the right size and shape to correct the crooked tooth.

Photo showing Orthosnap invisible aligner.

Why should I straighten my crooked teeth?

Crooked teeth overlap and may make it difficult to thoroughly clean all surfaces of the teeth. Patients with crooked teeth experience higher rates of tooth cavities and an overall decrease in oral wellness.

Malocclusion or misalignment of the bite caused by crooked teeth is a common underlying cause of TMD. TMD is a complex bite disorder that affects the alignment and function of the jaw joint. Patients with TMD experience chronic pain in the face and jaw and reoccurring headaches.

Discolored Teeth

Yellowing or discoloration of the teeth is common as patients age. Stains from certain beverages and foods, gradual wear, and thinning of the tooth enamel create discolored teeth over time. While this is the most common cause of tooth discoloration, other factors such as lifestyle habits, genetics, and certain medications can cause more evasive tooth discoloration.

Bright, white smiles are often viewed as more healthy, attractive and confident. Patients with discolored teeth can benefit from cosmetic treatments that brighten and whiten the surface of the teeth. There are several cosmetic treatments that are commonly used to address tooth discoloration of varying types. We offer in-office professional teeth whitening, take-home whitening kits and cosmetic veneers to improve the appearance of discolored teeth.

Common Causes of Tooth Discoloration

Age– Even if you practice good oral hygiene and eat a well-balanced diet, over time the enamel on your teeth begins to wear thin. As the enamel slowly breaks down, the inner layer of the tooth known as dentin becomes exposed. Dentin is naturally yellow in color and gives teeth a subtle yellow appearance. Lifestyle habits and diet can exasperate this process resulting in premature staining of the teeth.
Diet– Coffee, red wine, or a highly acidic diet can wear away enamel. Patients who imbibe in these beverages or foods should consider limiting their intake. Patients are also encouraged to drink beverages such as coffee quickly instead of slowly sipping on them throughout the day to help prevent tooth staining.
Tobacco Use– Smoking, chewing, or vaping tobacco products can stain the surface of teeth. Patients who have quit smoking can benefit from a professional teeth cleaning and whitening treatment. Whiter teeth can take years off the appearance of your smile.
Injury– Often times a trauma or injury to a tooth can cause dark brown or black spots to form. This type of tooth discoloration is usually resistant to whitening gels. Montclair Plaza Dental Office offers cosmetic solutions such as veneers and tooth bonding for repairing permanent tooth discoloration.
Medications– Certain antibiotics can cause permanent spots of discoloration on your teeth. Discoloration caused by medications may be splotchy and brown causing the teeth to look dirty. Cosmetic dental treatments can be used to cover staining creating a more beautiful smile.

Video 01:00 | While a bright white smile may look healthy, it doesn’t necessarily mean that teeth are healthy.

Alternatives to Teeth Whitening

There are certain types of tooth stains that do not respond to professional teeth whitening, including those caused by medications or medical conditions. Alternative treatments for teeth whitening can include:

These cosmetic dentistry treatments offer a more permanent treatment option than teeth whitening. Tooth bonding is an affordable method to hide discolored teeth will only last about 4-8 years before it will need to be redone. Crowns and veneers will last significantly longer but will cost more than bonding.

We will work with you to evaluate the cause of your discolored or stained teeth and make a treatment recommendation that will whiten your smile with lasting results.

Dental Anxiety
Does dental anxiety keep you from visiting the dentist?

If you feel anxiety or fear about visiting the dentist, you are not alone. Many patients suffer from dental anxiety and often avoid receiving the dental care they need because of their fear. Giving into dental anxiety can result in the overall deterioration of your oral health.

Routine dental health exams are essential for keeping your teeth, gums, and jaw viable and healthy. Patients who visit the dentist on a biannual basis tend to experience a lower rate of tooth decay, gum disease, and tooth loss. Regular wellness exams help Dr. Srikureja catch developing issues early on allowing for more conservative dental treatment.

Compassionate, High-Quality Dentistry Montclair, CA

We combine advanced training, compassionate bedside manner and state of the art technology to make visiting the dentist as pleasant as possible. For patients with more advanced anxiety, our team may discuss sedation dentistry as an option for calming nerves. Sedation dentistry makes it possible for patients to receive the dental care they need without fear or anxiety. More procedures can be performed in a single visit, saving the patient time and money. Our sedation options are very safe and effective at helping anxious patients receive the dental care they need.

At Montclair Plaza Dental Office our dental care team understands that dental anxiety can be prohibitive to your oral wellness. Whether your fear comes from a past experience, or if you feel anxious about cost, the condition of your smile, or fear the unknown, we can help you.

Our team is highly skilled, specially trained, and naturally compassionate and welcoming. We help patients overcome their dental anxiety through patient education and personalized attention. We get to know our patients, we never rush through appointments, and always take the time to answer questions and explain your treatment plan.

Video 01:00 | If you’ve ever felt nervous or anxious before visiting your dentist, you are not alone. Thanks to today’s technology, dental visits are usually comfortable and virtually pain-free.

Sedation Options

Nitrous Oxide – Nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas, is administered through a mask that delivers an odorless gas which relaxes and calms you. The effects of nitrous oxide work really fast and are totally reversible. Patients are in control of their bodily functions and can respond to the staff, but are completely relaxed and most likely will not remember their treatment. Nitrous oxide is considered to be a safe sedation method for dental work.
Oral Conscious Sedation – This option is administered in pill form. Oral sedation will enable you to be responsive and in control of your bodily functions while feeling completely relaxed throughout your procedure. This type of sedation may take several hours to completely wear off and patients will need to arrange for transportation after treatment. Most patients will have no memory of their dental procedure.
Headache Therapy
Do you routinely wake up with headaches first thing in the morning?

Most patients do not consider headaches to be a dental health concern, however, chronic headaches can be a sign of a temporomandibular disorder (TMD), bruxism or sleep apnea, all dental concerns that can be addressed by your dentist. For patients experiencing headaches due to a dental or sleep condition, they may find little relief from over the counter pain-relief medications and become frustrated by routinely occurring headaches that can interfere with their daily life.

Photo of woman with headache

Our dentist will perform a thorough analysis of your oral health, jaw and bite alignment and consider your medical history to help determine the underlying cause of chronic headaches. Treating the root cause of recurring headaches help patients find long-term relief and can protect your smile from further damage.

TMD is often the result of an imbalance in the bite which puts a strain on the jaw joints causing painful symptoms. Patient with TMD experience muscle tension, jaw pain, popping and clicking of the jaw, headaches, and discomfort chewing or speaking.

Your Montclair dentist may recommend bite realignment using orthodontics, restorative dentistry or an oral sleep appliance to relieve added pressure on the jaw during sleep. Treatment will be tailored to the specific needs of the patient and may require a combination of restorative and oral sleep appliance therapy.

Headaches & Bruxism

Bruxism is the habit of grinding one’s teeth. Patients commonly grind their teeth in their sleep and have little awareness of the behavior. Grinding or clenching of the jaw while sleeping can allow bruxism to go undiagnosed for extended periods of time resulting in cracked, chipped or excessively worn teeth. Patients with bruxism often wake with painful headaches first thing in the morning due to many hours of teeth grinding during sleep. The repetitive overuse of the jaw joint and muscles can cause tension headaches and facial discomfort.

Patients who grind their teeth in their sleep may benefit from an oral sleep appliance. The custom-made device is similar to a mouthguard and fits securely over the upper and lower arch of teeth. The appliance is designed to hold the jaw in a comfortable alignment and prevents the jaw from grinding while the patient sleeps. Patients may also benefit from restorative dentistry such as dental veneers or implants to repair damage caused by years of teeth grinding.

Headaches & Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a medical condition that can affect your smile and overall wellness. Sleep apnea occurs when you the soft tissues in the mouth collapse, blocking the airway. The normal flow of oxygen is disrupted and patients are deprived of oxygen repeatedly throughout the night. The lack of oxygen can cause painful headaches that typically occur first thing after waking in the morning.

A patient who has sleep apnea should seek treatment as soon as possible. Oral sleep appliance therapy is discreet, comfortable and potentially life-saving. We offer sleep apnea treatment from the comfort of our Montclair, CA dentist office.

Missing Teeth
What are my options for replacing missing teeth?

Replacing missing teeth is necessary for preserving the function and health of your smile. Even one missing tooth presents the possibility of secondary dental health concerns and an overall deterioration in oral health.

Modern dentistry provides innovative, highly effective and natural looking solutions for replacing missing teeth. Dental restorations look and function like natural teeth due to improvements in digital imaging and dental materials. Montclair Plaza Dental Office utilizes the latest in dental technology and materials to help provide patients with lasting solutions for missing teeth.

Why should I replace my missing tooth?

Missing teeth compromise the function, aesthetic, and alignment of your smile. Just one missing tooth weakens the stability of the jaw bone. Teeth are more prone to shifting, can become loose and may result in additional tooth loss. Patients with missing teeth are also at a higher risk of developing tooth decay, gum disease, and facial sagging.

Solutions for Missing Teeth

Montclair Plaza Dental Group offers a full range of replacement options for missing teeth. Whether you are missing a single tooth or require a full denture, our high quality, modern restorative treatment options can help rebuild your healthy, beautiful smile.

Dental Bridge – A dental bridge is typically used to replace a single missing tooth or several consecutive missing teeth. Dr. Ancona often recommends a removable traditional dental bridge as a cost-effective temporary solution to replacing missing teeth. The dental bridge is custom fabricated to blend in with your natural smile for a seamless result. The bridge is anchored in place using two adjacent teeth that are filed down.
Dentures & Partials – A denture is a traditional option for replacing a full arch or full set of teeth in edentulous patients. Dentures and partials are typically a removable restoration that is custom designed to fit comfortably in the bite. Dentures allow patients to regain most of their natural chewing function and can help boost their self-confidence and oral health.
Single Dental Implant – A single dental implant is the most natural and stable option for replacing a single missing tooth. A small titanium post is surgically placed in the empty root socket. Given 3-6 months to heal, the implant fuses with the jaw bone creating a secure bond. Once healed, the dental implant is adorned with an abutment and dental crown creating a natural looking prosthetic tooth system.
Implant Secured Dental Restoration – A dental bridge, denture, or denture partial can be secured using 2 or more dental implants. Using precise planning and by optimizing healthy bone tissue, our team helps patients improve the fit, stability, and function of their dental restoration. Patients who choose to secure their dental restoration with dental implants enjoy improved oral health and experience less deterioration of their facial structure. Patients with an existing denture or dental bridge may also benefit from securing their restoration with dental implants.
Sleep Apnea
Does loud snoring keep you awake at night?

Do you or your partner snore loudly while asleep? Do you wake up almost every morning with a headache or feeling more tired than when you went to bed?

Loud snoring, chronic fatigue, and headaches are common symptoms of a condition known as Obstructive Sleep Apnea. OSA is a progressive condition that can trigger the development of secondary oral and systemic health complications. If you or your partner show signs of sleep apnea it is important to notify your dentist or doctor as soon as possible. Seeking treatment can help you improve your health, focus, and mood.

Video 01:42 | Steve Carstensen, DDS identifies the basics of sleep and obstructive sleep apnea.

What causes obstructive sleep apnea?

Sleep apnea is a condition that occurs when the soft oral tissues collapse at the back of the throat and block normal oxygen flow. Sleep apnea deprives the body and brain of the oxygen it needs to function properly. Patients with sleep apnea commonly wake repeatedly throughout the night gasping for air or snore loudly while asleep.

Illustration showing sleep apnea mechanism

Risk Factors and Symptoms of Sleep Apnea

There is no single cause for snoring or sleep apnea. While anyone could develop sleep apnea, there are certain risk factors that increase your likelihood of developing OSA. Patients who are overweight, over the age of 40, male, or who have a large neck circumference are all at a greater risk for sleep apnea. Often times snoring is made worse by drinking, smoking or using sedatives.

OSA is a serious medical condition that should be addressed by a medical professional. Patients who have sleep apnea and do not seek treatment are an increased risk of both oral and systemic health complications.

Over time, patients with sleep apnea become more likely to develop conditions such as:

Heart attacks
Strokes Diabetes
Chronic fatigue
Dry mouth
High blood pressure

Patients with sleep apnea are unable to get a full nights rest and begin to experience a decline in their overall quality of life. Good, restful sleep is essential for allowing your body to rebuild. Sleep apnea can affect you mentally, emotionally and physically. It can also cause your partner to lose sleep as well.

Treating Sleep Apnea Montclair, CA

We provide patients with oral sleep appliance therapy for treating sleep apnea. Oral sleep appliance therapy is more discreet and comfortable than a traditional CPAP machine. The appliance is similar to a sports mouth guard and is custom designed to fit securely and comfortably around your jaw.

The oral sleep appliance helps to properly align the jaw while sleeping preventing soft tissue from collapsing over the airway. The oral appliance can help patients breathe all night comfortably so that they wake up feeling refreshed. Patients who wear the oral sleep appliance experience a relief in painful headaches caused by oxygen deprivation associated with OSA.

Teeth Grinding
Do you clench your jaw or grind your teeth?

Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, is an oral habit that could damage your teeth, gums, and jaw. Bruxism is often a subconscious habit that occurs while a patient is asleep or during times of high anxiety or stress.

Montclair Plaza Dental Office provides screenings for bruxism during your routine dental exams. Diagnosing and treating bruxism as soon as possible can help prevent the development of secondary conditions such as TMD. Over time teeth grinding can damage the delicate jaw joint (temporomandibular joint), putting added stress on the surrounding muscles and nerves and can result in long-term chronic pain. For many patients with TMD, treating teeth grinding or jaw clenching helps to relieve painful symptoms.

Video 01:00 | Teeth grinding also known as Bruxism, often happens at night during sleep.

How do I know if I grind my teeth?

For many patients, it can be difficult to know if they are grinding their teeth because it so commonly occurs during sleep. Many of our patients report that their partner cannot sleep due to constant sound of grinding teeth. Routine dental health exams can help your dentist diagnose teeth grinding with a simple visual examination. This will allow us to treat it early on to prevent further damage to your smile.

You may be grinding your teeth if:

You regularly wake up with a headache
Have unexplained chips or cracks in your teeth
Your teeth appear to be wearing down
You have chronic jaw pain or muscle tension in your face
You suffer from persistent sensitive teeth
Have damaged tissue to the inside of your mouth
You suffer from unexplained earaches or facial pain

Treating Bruxism in Montclair, CA

The dentists at Montclair Plaza Dental Group offer treatments for people who suffer from teeth grinding. One of the quickest and most effective treatments for teeth grinding is an oral sleep appliance. Many people can curb teeth grinding by practicing better dietary habits or relaxation methods. We will also treat and correct the source of the problem and then repair any damage as a result of teeth grinding.

How to stop your teeth from grinding: Oral sleep appliance therapy may be prescribed by your Montclair dentist to help you stop the teeth grinding habit. A custom fit oral appliance can be worn while asleep to help protect the teeth and jaw from further damage. The oral appliance fits snugly over the upper and lower jaw and holds the jaw in proper alignment preventing the grinding motion.

How to repair the damage caused by teeth grinding: Your Montclair dentist may recommend other cosmetic or restorative treatments to repair damage caused by prolonged bruxism. Chronic teeth grinding can leave teeth worn, chipped or broken and even affect the health of the gums. Dental crowns, veneers or other restorative dental solutions can help rebuild the function and appearance of your beautiful and healthy smile.

Tooth Cavity
Cavities are the most common dental health concern and affect patients of all ages.

Bacteria feed on sugars and food debris that get trapped between teeth. Bacteria multiply and spread when not controlled with good oral hygiene. Tooth decay occurs when the acidic byproduct left behind by oral bacteria wears away the protective tooth enamel leaving the tooth structure susceptible to infection.

Video 01:00 | Cavities can affect people of all ages, and they don’t just happen overnight.

Treatment for a Tooth Cavity

We offer many treatments for tooth decay at our Montclair, CA dentist office. Depending on how severe the decay is, your dentist may recommend of the following treatments:

Dental Filling: If caught in the early stages, tooth decay can be easily treated with a routine dental filling. This is a conservative treatment aimed to preserving the tooth if is weakened from a tooth cavity. The filling is will restore the tooth’s strength and protect the tooth from future damage and decay.
Root Canal: If the dental cavity has been left untreated, it may extend to the tooth’s root canal. This typically causes extreme pain or an infection. Root canal therapy is necessary to save your tooth from extraction. It can effectively remove tooth decay without compromising the integrity of the jaw or bite.
Dental Crown: Dental crowns may be recommended to treat a wide range of restorative and cosmetic dental concerns including a tooth cavity. For large cavities, your dentist may choose a dental crown to cover the tooth and restore stability after the decay has been removed. The dental crowns can be designed and fabricated in our office using the E4D CAD/CAM system in a single visit.
Extraction: We will extract the tooth if the decay is too severe and we feel we cannot save it. Extracting a severely damaged tooth is a last resort. Your dentist will make every attempt to preserve the natural tooth.

Dental cavities are most commonly caused by a lack of good oral hygiene.

Tooth decay can usually be prevented. Good at home oral hygiene and routine dental health exams with your Montclair Plaza Dental Office dentist can help keep your teeth healthy and cavity free. Biannual dental health exams are the best way to prevent the progression of tooth decay. Regularly schedule oral exams allow for early diagnosis and intervention. In between your six-month exams and professional dental cleanings twice daily brushing and flossing are key to maintaining your good oral health. Brushing and flossing thoroughly and adequately removes the daily build-up of debris and helps to control the spread of oral bacteria.

Practicing good oral hygiene and visiting the dentist on a biannual basis decreases your risk of developing tooth decay and associated secondary dental concerns. Patients with high rates of tooth decay are more prone to developing gum disease, and tooth loss.

A healthy diet low in sugar can also help to prevent tooth decay. Diets high in sugar can increase rates of tooth decay. If you do partake in an occasional sugary drink or snack, be sure to brush your teeth immediately after to prevent the build-up of sugary residue on the surfaces of your teeth.

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