• Aesthetic improvement of a smile using minimal intervention procedures. A case report

      Cowan, Marcus; Babb, C; Romero, M; Pruett, M; Coleman, J; Department of Restorative Sciences (Augusta University, 2019)
      Tooth discoloration, particularly affecting the maxillary anterior teeth, is often an esthetic concern for dental patients.1 The most common cause of intrinsic tooth discoloration is dental fluorosis (DF),1 which is enamel hypomineralization due to long-term ingestion of high levels of fluoride during tooth mineralization.2 DF results in white opaque areas or discolorations ranging from yellow to dark brown, with porosities on the enamel surface.3 A widely-used scale for classifying the severity of DF is the Tooth Surface Index of Fluorosis (TSIF), developed by Horowitz, by which the examiner determines the extent of affected enamel by estimating the amount of DF as a fraction of the total visible enamel surface.4 Microabrasion, introduced by Croll and Cavanaugh in 1986,5 is a technique used to correct surface enamel irregularities and remove intrinsic enamel stains through the application of hydrochloric acid combined with pumice in a paste.6 When performed correctly and conservatively, the amount of enamel loss from microabrasion is clincally insignificant.7 The success of microabrasion depends upon the extent and severity of the discoloration, and occasionally a slightly yellowish appearance will result from the yellow dentin shade showing through the translucent enamel.8 The final appearance can be improved by dental bleaching, with long-lasting results.7 The following article is a clinical report of the use of microabrasion combined with nightguard bleaching with 10% carbamide peroxide to improve the appearance of teeth affected by fluorosis.
    • A multidisciplinary approach to the management of a maxillary midline diastema: A clinical report

      Romero, Mario F.; Babb, C; Department of Restorative Sciences, Department of General Dentistry (Augusta University, 2019)
      Anterior maxillary spacing has been shown to be one of the most negative influences on self-perceived dental appearance, and a maxillary midline diastema (MMD) is commonly cited by patients as a primary concern during dental consultations. MMD has been defined as a space greater than 0.5 mm between the mesial surfaces of the 2 maxillary central incisors. An MMD greater than 2 mm in the mixed dentition is unlikely to spontaneously close. African Americans are more than twice as likely to have an MMD than whites or Hispanics. In esthetic situations, without a comprehensive smile analysis and proper planning, overtreatment and undesirable effects can occur. Tooth size especially has been emphasized as the primary element of an esthetic smile design. One method of establishing tooth size is tooth biometry as described by Chu. He reported that maxillary anterior tooth widths average 8.5 mm for central incisors, 6.5 mm for lateral incisors, and 7.5 mm for canines and that 80% of the patient population falls within ±0.5 mm of these values. Other important elements of smile analysis include the dental midline, tooth morphology, axial inclinations, and the soft tissue components of gingival health, levels, and harmony. The direct bonding technique is a straightforward, conservative method for diastema closure. However, artistic skills, a knowledge of tooth morphology, and the appropriate selection and use of composite resin materials are essential for success. According to Spear and Kokich, “some existing dentitions simply cannot be restored to a more pleasing appearance without the assistance of several different dental disciplines.” Therefore, complex esthetic dilemmas may require more than one dental discipline, for example, operative dentistry and orthodontics, to establish a functional, maintainable, and pleasant smile. This article illustrates a clinical situation in which an MMD was addressed by first completing a comprehensive smile analysis, followed by closure using limited orthodontics and direct composite resin restorations.