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What You Need to Know about Dentistry in San Jose California

Convenient Answers to Common Questions

We want to provide convenient, complete answers to all of your common concerns, both when you're in the office as well as when you're at home. That's why we've provided this list of FAQs, and our corresponding answers. Of course, if you have questions not listed here, just email or call our office!

I'm so used to my smile, I take it for granted. How can a "Smile Analysis" help me determine what changes would be most beneficial?

Thorough smile analysis helps uncover hard-to-articulate aspects of your smile, and your feelings about it, allowing us to determine which treatments or procedures would be most appropriate for creating change. Typically, analysis involves both emotional questions-- to determine how your smile affects your self-image, your interactions with others, and your relationships; and objective questions-to determine what structural/physical aspects of your smile concern you. Come in for a visit to obtain our professional evaluation.

After conducting a Smile Analysis, what is involved in Smile Design?

Smile Design involves several important steps. After an initial smile analysis, we conduct a consultation using digital imaging to preview exactly what your desired final smile can look like. After we all agree upon the final objectives, we create a treatment plan to accommodate those goals-some involving several lengthy appointments, some requiring much less time. In any case, we strive to create a smile that accurately conveys your unique personality, in keeping with your gender, age, and facial features. When we're finished, the new restorations will be undetectable, all that you'll see is a healthy, happy new smile that won't quit.

This kind of Smile Design is simple to explain, but extremely technical to perform. That's why it's so critical to choose a professional dentist such as Dr. Bittner, who has obtained advanced training in the latest techniques and materials of restorative and cosmetic dentistry. In fact, Smile Design isn't taught in dental school, but requires post-graduate training, extensive hands-on experience, and incredible dedication to confidently apply both the artistic and scientific knowledge involved in successful, lasting smile work.

How can you use imaging software to show me what my smile will look like ahead of time?

We routinely use digital imaging to help our patients visualize the end results of cosmetic and restorative work. By simply asking the right questions, taking various digital photos of your current smile, and keying in the correct input into our computer, we'll generate a number of graphic images that accurately demonstrate how your procedure will affect your smile. It's a fun process, and usually produces excited smiles all around.

How can I safely whiten my teeth?

Tooth whitening is one of the simplest, safest, and most impactful kinds of cosmetic dentistry available today. At our office, we offer a variety of methods, some of which we conduct right here in our office, others which you can do at your convenience in daily sessions at home or during your commute. Depending upon your own particular dental health and causes of discoloration, we'll help you determine which system would benefit you most.

Remember, it's important that we have a brief consultation prior to your choosing a whitening system, since some people are better candidates than others for the treatment. For example, if your teeth are darkened to a yellow, brown or orange tinge due to age, coffee, tea, or smoking, chances are very good that teeth whitening will bring lasting, satisfactory results. However, if your teeth are a dark gray tone from fluorosis, smoking or tetracycline use, whitening results may be a bit less dramatic; further, whitening does not lighten resins, silicates, porcelains or other synthetic materials.

I want my front teeth to look better, but I don't want to wear braces. Can you help me?

Dr. Bittner has a number of ways to improve the look of your front teeth without the use of braces. For slightly crooked or unevenly worn teeth, a bit of reshaping and the addition of porcelain veneers may be sufficient to give them a bright, uniform look. In more pronounced cases, it may be necessary to fit you with 'invisible braces'. We'd be happy to talk with you further about the option that best suits your individual situation.

Crowns, Onlays, Inlays, Veneers & Partials, can you tell me more about these procedures?

With today's technology, materials, and advanced techniques, we have many options for restoring weak, broken, chipped, discolored, and/or missing teeth, bringing your smile back to its original shape and function. For example, we can apply an all-porcelain crown, somewhat like a "cap", to cover the entire outside of the problem tooth. Crowns are also helpful to cover large areas of decay after they've been filled. Or, for smaller areas of decay, we can apply all-porcelain onlays or inlays. similar to crowns, but retaining more natural tooth structure. For unattractive front teeth, we can create pretty, natural shapes and shades by applying paper-thin porcelain veneers to the fronts. For patients who are missing a number of front/side teeth, we can create a removable partial denture, designed for either the upper or lower jaw, made of all acrylic or all metal. They're attached to existing teeth by means of precision acrylic clasps, and must be removed for cleaning after eating, as well as for sleeping. For more information on any of these procedures, please feel free to talk with Dr. Bittner during your visit.

I really don't like visiting the dentist, is there anything you can do to help me relax?

We understand that people have qualms about having their teeth worked on, so we strive to create a relaxing atmosphere. First, our entire staff is trained to be alert and aware of your concerns, so that we can make your visit as comfortable as possible. Second, we've included a number of entertaining distractions to help you enjoy yourself during your treatment, including watching your favorite DVD, listening to your favorite music, and relaxing with professional spa services. For procedural concerns or anxiety, we can also provide nitrous oxide, or plan to use oral sedation or "sleep dentistry" as needed to help you undergo complex or lengthy treatments. During your first appointment, we'll spend plenty of time going over such concerns with you, then plan your treatments accordingly!

I don't like drills. Are there any other options?

Thanks to today's minimally invasive, advanced laser technology, we no longer have to use dental drills. Laser light is extremely efficient, producing very little heat as it acts on its target, avoiding the body's typical "histamine release" response, thus resulting in little or no discomfort to the patient. This makes it ideal for oral procedures in both hard and soft tissues, since it seldom affects tissues other than the target tissues themselves. What's more, we can use the laser to both detect, and eliminate tooth decay, quickly and with more precision than we could with traditional x-rays, probes, and drills. We also use the unique H2O Laser which uses water to cut, so there is no heat! For more about the ways in which lasers benefit patients in our practice, check out the article in our patient library.

Sometimes my gums bleed when I brush my teeth. Should I be concerned?

Bleeding gums are never a good sign! However, the condition may or may not require professional attention, depending on the source of the problem. Bleeding gums can be caused by improper, rough, "scrubbing" instead of gentle, circular brushing motions; using a hard-bristled tooth brush instead of a soft one; plaque and/or tartar build-up below the gum line; or gum sensitivity due to gingivitis or periodontal disease.

If your problem persists despite correct brushing and flossing methods, or occurs every time you brush, it's likely to be the result of some level of gum disease, and we recommend you set up an evaluation appointment with Dr. Bittner. We specialize in helping patients arrest and successfully treat all stages of gum disease, through the use of our excellent non-surgical gum care procedures.

Do you offer any other services besides dentistry?

For the past few years, we've been pleased to offer our patients a full range of professional spa services in conjunction with our regular professional dental care and smile enhancement services. These services are designed to promote your overall sense of well-being from head to toe. For some, this may include a simple massage by our professional masseuse; others may be interested in special skin improvement treatments, manicures, pedicures, or nutritional counseling. Please feel free to ask our staff about how we can help you leave behind the hectic schedule of your busy world, and take time out to care for yourself.

My spouse's snoring keeps me up at night! I've heard that some dentists can prescribe an appliance to prevent snoring. Can you help with this problem?

Snoring is tough on any relationship! And, since it can be caused by a number of factors, we encourage you to have your spouse come in for a consultation and analysis with Dr. Bittner to determine the cause. In some cases, a person may actually stop breathing for short periods during the night-a condition called sleep apnea. In other cases, snoring can be caused by enlarged anatomical structures within the mouth and throat. During sleep, the throat area relaxes, allowing these structures to collapse against one another and obstruct clear airflow. In the latter situation, we can prescribe and fit a special appliance called a "snore-guard", which gently holds the mouth and throat in an open position during relaxed sleep and thus prevents snoring.

I'm a new patient and I know there will be forms for me to fill out prior to my first appointment. Could I get copies of these ahead of time, to save time on my appointment day?

We're happy to provide you with all the necessary new patient forms prior to your first appointment. Simply click on the "Patient Forms" button, and choose the appropriate forms from the listing provided. From there, you can quickly print the forms you need. If you don't have Adobe Acrobat Reader, you'll find that we provide a free download version for your convenience.

My breath has a terrible odor, even though I brush every day. What can I do about it?

Millions of people struggle with halitosis, or bad breath, despite daily teeth brushing. Here's a checklist of procedures that can eliminate the problem: twice daily brushing, daily flossing, tongue cleaning, regular professional cleanings, and careful cleaning of any dentures or removable dental appliances. However, if your hygiene is meticulous and the problem persists, we can offer several solutions. First, we can provide a special breath kit made by Breath Rx or Oxyfresh. These kits typically include a plastic tongue scraper that cleans away bacterial buildup on your tongue ten times more effectively than just brushing your tongue. significantly alleviating odor. The kits also include a toothpaste, rinse and portable mouth spray containing an ingredient designed to actually destroy the odor-causing sulfides that cause bad breath.

What about payment options for my part of the bill?

We offer several types of payment options: cash, check, Visa, MasterCard, or American Express. If you desire to set up an easy payment plan for more extensive work, we encourage you to give us a call to discuss financing options. When you come in for your consultation, we'll discuss your payment preferences as they pertain to your particular treatment plan options.

 890 Saratoga Ave., San Jose, CA 95129 • (408) 247-8080

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890 Saratoga Ave., Suite A, San Jose, CA 95129 USA
Dr. Gerald Bittner Jr. Dr. Michelle Bittner Dr. George Michaels Dr. Hafid Ortega The dental office of family, cosmetic and implant dentist Dr. Gerald Bittner Jr. is located in San Jose, CA. (408) 247-8080 sue@bittnerjrdds.com