Dr. Fairfax & Associates Family Dentistry

 

 

Patient-Focused Dentistry

Thank you for choosing Dr. Fairfax & Associates. We believe that dental health is key to overall health, and our primary mission is to deliver the best and most comprehensive dental care available.

The Whole Person

We take into account the whole person when caring for our patients. From routine check-ups and cleanings to emergency care, we are committed to giving you our undivided attention.

Your Comfort Is Our Priority

From the moment you walk into our office, you can expect to feel at home. We foster a relaxed, inviting atmosphere with professional, knowledgeable, and friendly staff. Sit back, relax, and trust that your smile is in exceedingly good hands.

 
 
 

A Caring and Thorough Team

We do not believe in ‘factory-style’ dental care where patients are shuttled in and out and only see the dentist or hygienist for a few minutes during an appointment. Each appointment with us is time reserved specifically for you.

Applying the Latest Technologies

Our team is highly trained in the latest dental approaches and technologies, which allows us to provide every patient with truly personalized attention.

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How can we help you?

We're experts at what we do so you don't have to be. But there's a lot to consider when making decisions about dental treatment, and you have a right to feel fully informed and have all your questions answered.

At Dr. Fairfax & Associates Family Dentistry, we're firm believers in educating our patients about the benefits of a healthy smile, so your questions are very important to us. We encourage your questions because we believe that an informed patient is a happy patient!

Here are a few of the questions we hear most frequently. Please give us a call if you're looking for other answers that you don't see here. A friendly member of our team will be happy to help you.

 

Other

If you recently hurt a tooth or part of your mouth, you might feel unsure about whether that injury is severe enough for a dentist to need to examine it.

As a general rule, your Fairfax dentist should always look at tooth injuries soon after they happen because it’s possible to sustain internal, invisible damage that won’t be detected without a dental x-ray. Even if you only sustain a minor injury to your smile, it’s a good idea to schedule a dental appointment within a few days. 

But what about same-day or late-night dental appointments? If your damaged tooth is broken, bleeding, painful, or outside of your mouth, you probably have a dental emergency and should schedule an emergency visit for that very same day. 

Common dental emergencies in Fairfax, VA include:

  • Broken jaws and broken teeth
  • Bleeding teeth or severely bleeding gums
  • Avulsed teeth, also known as “knocked-out teeth”
  • Toothaches or shooting tooth/nerve pains 
  • Painful, broken dental restorations 
  • Oral infections 
  • Fractured or cracked teeth

Even if you’re not positive that your dental injury is an emergency, you should call your dentist anyway. Your dental treatment team can walk through your injuries with you over the phone and help you decide what’s best to do next. 

Sadly, most dental emergencies are painful.

While nobody ever wants to be in pain, the good news is that dental pain can help alert you to the seriousness of your situation and draw attention to the fact that you need emergency dental care. 

Dental emergencies can cause pain for several reasons. If your tooth is knocked out, or “avulsed,” this will likely be very painful—but it will be a different kind of pain than if you have a toothache or dental infection. 

If you sustain a dental emergency, you can and should take over-the-counter pain medication as soon as you can. A dose of acetaminophen or ibuprofen can reduce your pain and make your symptoms bearable until you can get to our dental office.

If you’re still in significant pain when you arrive, our clinical team will treat your pain with the appropriate medications. Dr. Fairfax can also prescribe a pain medication for after your treatment if she believes your pain will persist. 

Remember, the faster you can get to our dental office for an emergency visit, the sooner we can get you out of pain. We don’t want our patients living with painful smiles or broken teeth, so we’ll do everything we can to minimize your suffering and get you feeling better. 

General Dentistry

The American Dental Association recommends everyone visit their dentist at least every six months for routine checkups and cleanings. We understand, however, that life sometimes gets in the way and that people can’t always visit their dentist as often as they’d like. 

If it’s been years or even decades since your last dental visit, we don’t want that to stop you from scheduling an appointment with our Fairfax dentist. We’re always happy to welcome new or returning patients who have gotten a little behind on their preventive dental care.

No matter how long it’s been since your last dental appointment, your first visit back will generally look the same as anyone else’s. We will first take an oral history of any medical or dental concerns you may have, and then we’ll obtain updated dental x-rays of your smile. Most often, this just means four small bitewing x-rays,  but Dr. Fairfax may want a set of full mouth x-rays.

Then, the routine dental procedures involve cleaning your teeth thoroughly and examining you for any potential oral health problems, including loose teeth, gum disease, and oral cancer. 

Our gentle hygienist will spend about 30 to 45 minutes removing tartar from your teeth using professional dental instruments. Then Dr. Fairfax will complete her oral exam and discuss her findings with you.

Depending on the overall condition of your teeth, we’ll create a proposed treatment plan that details any recommended work or treatments you will need going forward.

Many patients wonder why their routine teeth cleanings and checkups are so important. Is it really necessary to visit your Fairfax dentist every six months?

The answer is yes – especially if you want to protect your overall well-being.

Science has shown us a distinct connection between oral health and overall health. This stems from gum disease and the bacteria that cause the infection. This same bacteria can enter your bloodstream and travel to other areas of your body where it contributes to the inflammation-causing other systemic issues like:

  • Dementia
  • Heart Disease
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Stroke
  • Diabetes
  • Complications During Pregnancy
  • Low Birth Weight in Babies

One of the best ways to protect yourself from gum disease and other dental concerns like tooth decay and cavities is to visit your dentist consistently every six months for preventive teeth cleanings and checkups.

During your checkup, Dr. Fairfax will screen you for concerns like gum disease and tooth decay while your hygienist removes the plaque buildup that causes these problems during your teeth cleaning.

Preventive teeth cleanings and checkups can often save you time in the dental chair and money when you're able to detect any impending problems as early as possible.

Is it time for your next checkup and teeth cleaning in Fairfax? Contact us today at (703) 273-1033 to schedule your appointment.

Tooth Replacement in Fairfax VA | Man at DentistIf you have an avulsed (knocked out) tooth, try to remain calm because if you act quickly, we may be able to save the tooth. Contact our Fairfax dental office, explain your emergency to our receptionist, who will arrange for you to be seen within two hours.

Saving a Knocked-Out Tooth

If it is a baby tooth, it should not be replanted. If it is a permanent tooth, handle it carefully by holding the crown (the wider, whiter part). Avoid touching the root (the more pointed, yellower part). If the tooth is dirty, rinse it gently with water, taking care not to disturb any tissue that may still be attached to the root. Try to gently place the tooth back in the socket, then bite on a soft cloth or gauze to hold it in position.

Do not try to force the tooth back in place; if it can’t be replanted, keep it moist by placing it in the patient’s mouth (between the molars and cheek), in a small container with the patient’s spit, milk, or saline, or by placing it in a special storage media for avulsed teeth if available. Avoid storing the tooth in water!

Dental Emergencies in Fairfax

If your tooth has been knocked out, please contact our office immediately and we’ll get you the help you need.

Dental Services in Fairfax Yes. Your dentist is responsible for caring for your teeth, gums, and jawbones as they relate to your teeth and gums. We cannot see or detect hidden changes, developments, or abnormalities in your teeth and jawbones without dental x-rays.

We share your concerns about dental x-rays, and we take every precaution and safeguard to minimize your radiation exposure.

Our X-Ray Process

  • We follow a conservative schedule for diagnostic surveys.
  • We use only digital film, which requires the lowest amount of exposure time and therefore has the least amount of radiation.
  • We focus on technique and placement to eliminate the need for re-takes and additional exposure.
  • We provide each patient with a lead radiation apron prior to x-rays being taken.

Check-up x-rays are taken only when indicated and under the following schedule:

  • No new pathology for 18 months:  X-rays every 12 months
  • No new pathology for 36 months:  X-rays every 18–24 months
  • Full mouth survey:  X-rays every 5 years or as indicated

We seek to render the most professional care using state-of-the-art practices and consistent with the standard of care. Dental treatment without necessary dental x-rays is unacceptable, sub-standard, negligent care.

Dental Exams in Fairfax VA

If you still have questions about dental x-rays, please don’t hesitate to contact our Fairfax dental office. We’ll be happy to speak with you and put your mind at ease about our dental x-rays.

We accept most PPO dental plans. As a courtesy, we will submit all insurance claims on your behalf for direct reimbursement of services. We also offer an in-house dental discount plan for patients without dental insurance. We currently work with the following PPO plans:

Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield

Carefirst Blue Cross Blue Shield

Delta Dental

Cigna

Aetna

UMR (Compass Rose)

Metlife

Dentaquest

Meritain Health

Dominion DDS Dental

Christian Brothers

Denex Dental

Guardian

United Concordia

Humana

Children's Dentistry

Kids Dentist in FairfaxThis is an excellent question, and it’s a great idea to help get your little one ready for their new adventure, so they get excited about it and not see it as a scary experience.

The goal is for their first visit to our office to be low stress and fun, and there are things you can do to help us accomplish this:

  • Search online or visit your library for children’s books that help your little one understand (on their level) what the dentist is all about.
  • If they have an older sibling who has a dental appointment, bring your younger child with you so they can get used to us and the office setting before it’s time for their first visit. Or, bring your child to your next checkup.
  • Keep your negative thoughts about dentistry to yourself; the last thing you want is to frighten them even before they reach our office.

Friendly Dentist for Kids in Fairfax

The team at Fairfax Dental Associates, enjoys treating children, and we value the trust you place in us to be part of their first dental experience. We can assure you that we have treated many children and understand what we need to do to help them feel safe and secure with us.

If your child is starting to get their baby teeth and you’re looking for a practice that offers gentle dentistry for kids in Fairfax, please call our office so we can get started. We look forward to helping your child develop a positive attitude about their oral health care that will last a lifetime.

Kid's Dentist in Fairfax At Dr. Fairfax & Associates Family Dentistry, we love to see children at our practice. Our goal is to make every experience they have with us exceptional so they'll look forward to future visits!

Your Child's First Visit

We like to see children around the age of one year old for their first visit. As your child gets older, Dr. Fairfax may recommend some additional services to help build and protect small teeth.

Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that helps teeth remineralize and strengthen as they develop. We may recommend fluoride treatments for your child during their routine cleanings and checkups. Dental sealants are a thin coating of composite material that we use to cover the chewing surfaces of your child's molars as they get older. Sealants help protect these vulnerable areas from tooth decay, which minimizes cavities for your child.

If your child participates in sports, Dr. Fairfax is happy to discuss the right protective wear for your child. Because sports injuries or accidents account for 40% of dental emergencies, it's important to be proactive about protecting your child's mouth and teeth from injury.

Dentist for Kids in Fairfax

We look forward to building a relationship with your child and teaching them the importance of their oral health. Contact our office today to schedule their next appointment.

Children's Dentistry in Fairfax | Young Child on Swing At Dr. Fairfax & Associates Family Dentistry, we see children starting at 1–2 years of age. We’ve found that a great way to start getting your kids used to dental visits is by letting them see how you react to the dentist. We recommend that you bring your child with you to one of your cleanings for their first "unofficial" dental visit to introduce them to the concept, the office, staff, and surroundings.

Getting Your Child Ready for the Dentist

When preparing your child for their first visit, be careful how you refer to the process. Avoid using any words or descriptions that would scare or confuse your child. A fun way to get them ready for the visit is to “check” their teeth and then let them check yours.

Kid's Dentist in Fairfax VA

During the first visit, we will often just look at and count their teeth, discuss home care, and proper oral hygiene techniques. Our team knows how to keep these visits light and fun so that children don’t develop any fears or worries about their next visit. Most children will have their first "official" dental visit, including a complete exam and cleaning, around 2 –2 1⁄2 years old. Again, we keep it fun, friendly, and child-centered so that children can approach their subsequent visits with confidence. Give us a call today!

Dental Implants

Smiling Woman | Dental Implants in FairfaxMany people are just now learning about dental implants, but the truth is that implants have been used successfully for decades. Studies by the American Academy of Dental Implantology show that three million people have dental implants, with a success rate of about 98%! 

Longevity of Dental Implants

The long-term success of dental implants is dependent on one thing – proper oral health care. If you practice good oral hygiene and visit our Fairfax, VA dental office regularly for checkups, a dental implant can last for the rest of your life.

One of the reasons for the long-term success of dental implants is that they are designed to act as a replacement root for a missing tooth. The titanium implant is a small post that’s placed in your jaw and allowed to heal.

Titanium is a biocompatible material, meaning the living tissue in your jaw readily accepts it. Over time the implant fuses with the bone and tissue, creating a stable foundation for an artificial replacement tooth like a crown, bridge, or denture.

Of course, the artificial tooth will never decay. However, your gums are still susceptible to infection, so you need to ensure that your oral hygiene efforts are effective. Since the implant depends on your gums for support, it’s essential to take all the steps necessary to keep them healthy.

Tooth Replacement in Fairfax VA

A dental implant is a significant investment, so it makes good sense to do everything you can to protect it. If you would like to learn more about dental implants and how to care for them, please call our Fairfax, VA dental office

Woman Smiling at Dentist | Dental Implants in Fairfax VADental implants are the standard of care for missing teeth, so congratulations on your choice! Fortunately, once you have gone through the process from implant placement to restoration, they are no more difficult to take care of than your natural teeth.

How Dental Implants Work

The critical thing to know about your implant, though, is that it gains its strength from the dense bone in your jaw that holds it securely in place. Your responsibility now is to be vigilant about oral hygiene to avoid gum disease that causes the bone to deteriorate around the implant and can lead to its failure.

So care instructions for your new dental implant in Fairfax are pretty basic; brush twice a day and floss once to keep the implant tooth clean and free from plaque. Be sure to pay special attention to all sides of the implant tooth to avoid a buildup of bacterial plaque that can lead to gum disease and threaten your implant. 

Implant Dentist in Fairfax

Visit the dentist twice a year or as instructed by Dr. Fairfax so we can check your implant and make oral hygiene recommendations to keep your teeth and gums healthy and your implant secure.

Dental Bridges and Dental Implants in Fairfax | Woman at DentistBoth options are offered at our Fairfax dental office and effectively fill the gap left by a missing tooth. The primary difference is that a dental bridge only fills the empty space, while a dental implant functions as a complete replacement tooth.

Your Replacement Options

Until recently, there were only two options for replacing one or more missing teeth – a dental bridge or a partial denture. In either case, the purpose is to fill the empty space and not actually replace the tooth.

In most cases, a dental bridge consists of a replacement tooth attached to crowns that secure the bridge as they are held in place by adjacent teeth. When placing a bridge, some alteration to the teeth securing the crowns is necessary.

A dental implant is a stand-alone replacement tooth that does not involve alteration of surrounding teeth. A dental implant functions just like a natural tooth because the implant is actually placed in your jaw, acting as a replacement root.

Tooth Replacements in Fairfax VA

Dr. Fairfax has extensive knowledge and experience in placing dental implants as well as bridges with great long-term success. If you still have questions, please contact our Fairfax dental office to arrange a consultation. We’re sensitive to your needs and will be happy to discuss both options to determine which best fits your needs and budget. 

Periodontal Treatment

Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease. If you are suffering from gingivitis, you might notice that your gums appear red or swollen, and they might also feel irritated. If you have bad breath that doesn't go away with brushing, flossing, or a mouth rinse, this may also be a sign that you have gingivitis.

Gum disease is an infection of the gums and bones that support your teeth. Even though gingivitis is the beginning of this infection, when it is detected early, you may be able to stop the infection from progressing and even reverse it in some cases.

Having an excellent home care routine that includes brushing your teeth twice and flossing once a day using the proper techniques is the first step to controlling gingivitis. Visiting your Fairfax, VA dentist every six months for teeth cleanings and checkups is another way to protect yourself from the damage that gum disease can cause.

The earlier gum disease can be treated, the better your chances are to successfully control your condition. Dr. Faifax and her team are well-equipped to help you manage gum disease whether you are dealing with gingivitis, or advanced gum disease, which is known as periodontitis.

Contact your dentist in Fairfax today at (703) 273-1033 if it's time to schedule your next preventive teeth cleaning and checkup.

Periodontal Treatment in Fairfax | Dental Tools When you have gum disease, your dentist in Fairfax, VA, will recommend periodontal treatment. The type of periodontal treatment you need will depend on how much your gum disease has progressed.

Progression of Gum Disease

If you have gingivitis, you might notice that your gums are red and swollen; they might bleed when you brush and floss. Gingivitis is early stage infection that can be treated with a professional cleaning at your dentist’s office as well as diligent brushing and flossing.

If gingivitis is left untreated, however, it can progress to periodontitis. This is a more serious level of infection that affects not only your gums, but also your jawbone. If periodontal treatment is not administered, the condition will get worse and you might even lose your teeth.

Nonsurgical treatment of gum disease includes scaling and root planning, which scrapes the plaque and tartar from your teeth and their roots below the gum line.

More advanced treatments include pocket reduction procedures, gum grafts, and bone grafts.

Gum Disease Treatment in Fairfax

Good home care in the form of brushing and flossing after meals goes a long way in making sure you do not need periodontal treatment for gum disease. Visiting your dentist twice each year is also recommended. Often, gum disease presents without any symptoms and only your dentist can identify it.

 

Invisalign

Up Close Smile | Invisalign in Fairfax Are crooked teeth embarrassing? Do you find yourself feeling nervous about talking and smiling in front of others because of your misaligned teeth? Maybe you've considered straightening your teeth, but the idea of wearing metal braces doesn't seem appealing either? Dr. Cerina Fairfax, your Invisalign dentist in Fairfax, has solutions for you!

What is Invisalign?

Instead of using traditional metal brackets and wires, Invisalign utilizes clear plastic aligners to apply gentle pressure that will gradually straighten your teeth. Aligners are removable, however, they should be worn at least 20-22 hours per day and changed every two weeks in order to achieve optimum results. Most Invisalign cases can be completed in 12-18 months. This makes them an ideal choice for busy adults who want to straighten their teeth efficiently and with discretion.

What are the Benefits of Invisalign?

Besides being virtually invisible, aligners are also comfortable to wear, and they don't interfere with your daily activities. You also have no restrictions to your diet, or changes to your home care routine since aligners are removable. Invisalign can deliver the smile and confidence you've always dreamed of in a short amount of time.

Will Invisalign Work for Me?

Dr. Fairfax is a certified Invisalign provider, and she can determine if Invisalign is right for your needs with an examination and some x-rays. Invisalign works well for most patients, however, it can't accommodate complex cases involving severe bite misalignment. Dr. Fairfax is happy to discuss other treatment options with you if Invisalign is not in your future. You may be surprised that you have multiple treatment options to choose from.

Dr. Fairfax has been providing quality care to patients in Fairfax, VA for many years, and she has extensive hours of advanced training, so you can rest assured that you're in good hands when you entrust your oral health to her. If crooked or misaligned teeth have been holding you back, we encourage you to contact our office to learn more about the possibilities for your smile.

If you are an adult who didn’t have orthodontic treatment as a child, or you did, and your teeth have relapsed, you should consider treatment with Invisalign clear aligners. Straightening crooked or crowded teeth enhances your smile, but it also makes oral hygiene more effective, which benefits your oral health.

Why Our Patients Love Invisalign

Adult Orthodontics in Fairfax | Smiling WomanInvisalign at Dr. Fairfax & Associates offers many advantages over orthodontic treatment with metal bracket and wire braces:

  • Comfortable – Smooth plastic trays will not irritate sensitive tissues in the mouth and fit perfectly over your teeth.
  • Discreet – Invisalign trays are made of crystal-clear plastic that virtually “disappear” when they’re in your mouth.
  • Convenient – Since your trays are removable, you can continue to eat your favorite foods and brush and floss easily.
  • Shorter treatment times – Everyone starts with different needs, but in general, Invisalign treatment takes about 12 to 15 months for adults.

Invisalign Dentist in Fairfax

If you want to learn more about Invisalign orthodontics in Fairfax and whether or not they’re the best choice for you, please call our office to arrange a consultation. We will be happy to perform an evaluation, learn about your goals and expectations, answer your questions, and help you decide if you are a good candidate for Invisalign.

Invisalign Treatment in FairfaxIt can feel liberating to complete the alignment phase of your Invisalign treatment. Not only does your smile look great, but you feel more confident than you have in years.

The Importance of a Retainer

Now you get to enjoy your beautifully balanced smile, but you need to know that orthodontic treatment is a lifelong commitment. After the aligner phase of Invisalign, you will need to wear your retainer to some extent for the rest of your life.

Why? Because Invisalign straightens teeth by “remodeling” the bone and ligaments that hold them in place. The goal is to remove force from one side of the tooth and transfer it to the other side where there isn’t enough force. So until the bone has fully remodeled, the teeth need to be supported by a retainer to maintain their new position, prevent relapse, and avoid the need for re-treatment in the future.

Dr. Cerina Fairfax is Your Fairfax Dentist

Dr. Cerina Fairfax is an Invisalign dentist who has helped many of our patients enjoy the benefits of a healthy, straight smile. If you would like to learn more about the retainer phase of treatment or have general questions, please call Dr. Fairfax & Associates to schedule a consultation.

Invisalign in Fairfax VA | Smiling WomanInvisalign is a popular, short-term adult orthodontic treatment because it adapts to the adult lifestyle. Patients appreciate Invisalign’s conveniences, one of which is the removable aligner trays that gently nudge your teeth into the desired position.

This offers a lot of freedom because you can remove your aligners for meals, oral hygiene, and special events. But you must wear them 22 to 23 hours per day to achieve results in the shortest amount of time.

Stay Diligent with Wearing Your Trays

Unfortunately, the same freedom can derail your Invisalign treatment if you aren’t compliant with wearing your trays as instructed. If you maintain your scheduled check-ups with Dr. Fairfax, she will know if you’ve been following the instructions or not.

Going for even a few hours without your trays impacts the way your teeth feel when you put them back in your mouth. The micromovements of your teeth are quickly undone when you’re not wearing your trays, and you may have to go back to the previous set to start moving your teeth all over again.

If you are going to invest your time and money in Invisalign treatment in Fairfax, you owe it to yourself to comply with the instructions. When you do, your treatment will proceed right on schedule, and you will achieve the straight smile you want in the shortest time possible.

Invisalign in Fairfax VA

Please call Dr. Fairfax & Associates today to schedule an Invisalign consultation!

Straightening your teeth with Invisalign is an excellent option for patients who want discretion and efficiency without the hassle of wearing traditional braces. However, some patients may be concerned about the cost of invisible braces in Fairfax, VA. The good news is that there are a lot of ways you can fit treatment with Invisalign comfortably into your budget.

The truth is, the cost of Invisalign treatment varies with each patient's individual needs. Dr. Fairfax considers the complexity of your case, as well as the time it will take to complete it when determining the cost of your treatment. She will go over this with you during your initial Invisalign evaluation so you'll be able to budget for your treatment.

At Dr. Fairfax & Associates Family Dentistry, we offer convenient ways to pay for your Invisalign treatment like CareCredit. With third-party financing through CareCredit, you can pay for invisible braces with affordable monthly payments. Some plans with CareCredit are even interest-free.

We also work with many dental insurance plans. Some of which offer an orthodontic benefit that can be used towards treatment with Invisalign. This benefit can help reduce your out-of-pocket expense for invisible braces.

If you're interested in learning more about Invisalign in Fairfax, VA, contact our team today at (703) 273-1033 to schedule an evaluation with Dr. Fairfax.

Crowns & Bridges

Yes, in some situations. 

While a dental crown is not enough by itself to replace an entire missing tooth, our Fairfax dentist uses crowns for teeth to complete other dental restorations. 

If you have a missing tooth, a crown can work alongside a dental implant or a dental bridge to strengthen and support your smile.

Dental Crowns Replace Missing Teeth on Implants

Dental implants consist of three individual components that join together to form one durable, reliable restoration. 

The crown is the portion of the dental implant that you can see, as the titanium post is below the gum line, and the metal abutment is covered up. Crowns for teeth help dental implants look and feel natural, and they are the component that comes into contact with your food when you chew. 

Dental Crowns Replace Missing Teeth on Dental Bridges

Dental bridges help “bridge” a space between natural teeth. When you lose a tooth, a bridge can fill in the gap left behind using a false tooth called a “pontic.” 

A dental bridge can have one pontic or several pontics, and the pontic always rests between two neighboring dental crowns. These crowns can be from natural teeth if those teeth are healthy enough, but the tooth crowns can also be artificial dental restorations that Dr. Fairfax attaches to your natural teeth or even to a dental implant post. 

If you have additional questions about dental crowns in Fairfax, VA, please contact our dental office today at (703) 273-1033.

If you are missing one tooth or more than one that are adjacent to each other, Dr. Cerina Fairfax might recommend a dental bridge. This oral appliance is a tooth replacement option that literally bridges the gap where one or more teeth are missing.

We have many patients who opt for dental bridges to replace missing teeth. Most of our patients opt for a dental bridge that consists of one or more false teeth that are held in place by two dental crowns placed on the teeth adjacent to the gap. These are called abutment teeth.

A dental bridge is one of the options our Fairfax, VA dental office might recommend for tooth replacement. It’s important to replace missing teeth because not doing so can put your remaining teeth at risk. When there is a gap in your smile, the teeth in your mouth have a tendency to shift in order to fill in the space—much like books on a bookshelf will move when one book is pulled out of place. If you don’t replace missing teeth, your ability to chew properly is compromised and your bite can become out of alignment. This can lead to the loss of more teeth.

To find out more about dental bridges in Fairfax, VA, give us a call at Dr. Fairfax & Associates Family Dentistry.

Dentist Explaining X-Ray Results | Crowns in FairfaxA dental crown is a type of restoration that is usually recommended to protect and strengthen a damaged tooth. It is designed to surround your existing tooth structure, restoring function and appearance.

There are several cases where a dental crown would be an appropriate option:

  • Severe decay or infection has compromised the strength of the tooth
  • Root canal treatment has left a tooth weak and brittle
  • A tooth has already had multiple fillings and needs protection
  • Teeth grinding has worn down a tooth and impacts your dental bite

Same Day Crowns in Fairfax VA

We are pleased to offer both lab-fabricated dental crowns and CEREC crowns that allow us to deliver a final restoration in just one visit. With traditional crowns, we slightly alter the shape of the tooth to accommodate the crown. Next, we take impressions to create a model of the tooth. The model is sent to an outside lab where your crown is created, and the process takes two to three weeks.

For this reason, many of our patients choose CEREC crowns because they can leave our office the same day with a new crown. With CEREC, we take impressions of your teeth, create a virtual model, and fabricate your new crown right here in our office.

Dental crowns in our Fairfax, VA dental office will restore your tooth, improve function, and enhance your appearance. Please call us if you would like more information!

 

Cosmetic Dentistry

Teeth Whitening in Fairfax | Woman in Whitening Not everyone was born with a smile as bright and white as they would like it to be. There are a lot of factors that can dull the color of your teeth, including genetics, aging, and lifestyle.

The good news is that there is a simple, affordable procedure that can give you a smile many shades whiter than it is today. Teeth whitening is one of the most common cosmetic dentistry procedures around.  But are you a good candidate for professional teeth whitening? Let’s take a look at some of the common questions people have about professional teeth whitening.

How can I prepare for professional teeth whitening?

You can either talk to your dentist about teeth whitening during a routine examination, or you can make a special appointment to discuss it. In either case, your dentist will talk to you about any unique health issues that must be taken into consideration.

It is always recommended that you have your teeth professionally cleaned before you undergo teeth whitening treatment. If your teeth have plaque and tartar on them, the whitening effects will not be as dramatic.

Is in-office or at-home teeth whitening better?

At Dr. Fairfax and Associates Family Dentistry, we offer in-office or at-home professional teeth whitening. Both are effective, although in-office treatment usually shows more dramatic results in a shorter amount of time.

What can I expect at the professional teeth whitening appointment?

Once you are ready for the whitening procedure, you will be shown a shade guide to first closely match the current color of your teeth. Then you can decide what your goal color will be—whether it is two shades lighter or 10 shades lighter. When the procedure is finished, you can compare the chart to your teeth after whitening to see if you have achieved the results you had hoped for.

How should I care for my teeth after the teeth whitening appointment?

You’ll want to avoid any kind of “staining” foods and beverages for a few days after your whitening procedure. It’s important to remember that the more of those types of foods and drinks you avoid, the longer your whitening results will last. Make sure you brush regularly to help resist any staining in the future.

What if I have other questions about professional teeth whitening?

Call Dr. Fairfax and Associates Family Dentistry for more information on teeth whitening cosmetic dentistry in Fairfax, if you would like your smile to be its whitest, brightest best! We look forward to meeting you!

Smiling Woman | Veneers in FairfaxPorcelain veneers are a great investment in your smile. But like many other cosmetic dentistry restorations, their lifespan depends on how well you take care of your general oral health. With conscientious oral hygiene and regular checkups at our Fairfax, VA dental office, you can expect your veneers to last up to fifteen years!

Lifespan of Veneers

In general, veneers that are expertly placed on a healthy tooth are extremely durable. The National Institutes of Health indicates that, when cared for properly, porcelain veneers have a 94% success rate over ten years. Almost half of the cases where a veneer didn’t last were due to fracturing. 

Veneers are made of porcelain, which is a glass that is strong but brittle. Fracturing can occur in several ways. Biting down on hard foods like nuts or candy can chip or crack your veneer. Likewise, you can easily fracture a veneer if you use your teeth to open packages or in other ways in which they weren’t intended to be used!

Another reason that veneers fracture is teeth grinding, or bruxism. Teeth grinding is harmful enough to your natural teeth, so you can imagine how damaging this habit can be to a veneer. Before placing your veneer, Dr. Fairfax will take the necessary steps to ensure that grinding isn’t a problem. But if you start to experience pain or tension in your jaw, you may be suffering from bruxism and need to have it corrected to protect your veneers.

Please Call to Learn More

At our Fairfax, VA dental office, we use cosmetic dentistry to help our patients feel good about the appearance of their smile. If you’re considering veneers and have questions, please contact our office. We will be happy to arrange a consultation with Dr. Fairfax to discuss your needs. 

We’re so glad you asked! At Dr. Fairfax & Associates Family Dentistry, we offer a variety of cosmetic dentistry treatments to transform your smile and take your confidence to the next level. 

No matter which aspects of your smile you’re unhappy with, you can improve your looks and enhance your teeth with cosmetic dentistry. 

My Teeth Are Too Yellow

If you want whiter teeth, look no further than our profession teeth whitening in Fairfax.

Supervised teeth bleaching treatments can remove years of surface stains, making you look instantly younger, and your smile instantly brighter.

My Teeth Are Crooked

If crooked teeth are the problem, we offer Invisalign clear braces that will straighten your smile while allowing you to maintain a professional appearance and enjoy all the foods you love.

My Teeth Are Unattractive

Our porcelain veneers can solve all your smile problems—from stained teeth to small-looking teeth to everything in between. 

Veneers are a highly popular type of cosmetic dentistry that can transform your smile for a dramatic improvement. 

My Teeth are Chipped or Cracked in Places

Cosmetic dental bonding and dental crowns can solve these problems! Dr. Fairfax can restore beauty and function through cosmetic dentistry treatments such as tooth crowns and bonding.

If you have damaged teeth, let us repair and restore what’s broken while also designing a smile that’s beautiful to look at!

When you have questions about cosmetic dentistry in Fairfax, VA, we invite you to contact our dental office today by calling (703) 273-1033. 

Full & Partial Dentures

Woman Smiling | Dentures in Fairfax VAJust about anyone who is missing a few or all of their teeth is a good candidate for dentures. At our Fairfax dental office, we customize natural-looking full and partial dentures to restore function and improve your dental and facial appearance.

Modern Partial Dentures

If you are missing a few teeth, we can create a partial denture that fits in with your existing teeth, kind of like a jigsaw puzzle! Partial dentures clip onto your existing teeth to hold them in place.

If most or all of your teeth are damaged or missing, you are a good candidate for full dentures. Many people are disappointed when they hear they need dentures because they don’t want a fake-looking smile.

But today we have access to updated materials and state-of-the-art technology that allows us to create a set of dentures that look as close to natural teeth as possible.

An exciting part of the process is the planning phase where you will help us decide on the final look of your new dentures. We have control over every detail, down to the shape, size, color, and position of the artificial teeth in a comfortable acrylic base. The result is a denture that improves your smile and your quality of life.

If you are interested in a more permanent solution, we can combine implants with either full or partial dentures that stay in place and don’t slip or move when you least expect it.

Denture Consultations in Fairfax VA

Would you like to learn more about how dentures can improve your life? Please call Dr. Fairfax & Associates Family Dentistry, and we will be happy to arrange a consultation at your convenience.

Dental Equipment | Dentures in FairfaxThe longevity of dentures is, of course, different for everyone; the generally accepted average lifespan, however, is five to eight years.

In reality, the dentures themselves could last much longer, but it’s not the prosthetic that is the problem. Throughout time, the shape and density of your jawbone are changing; this means that a denture that fit correctly when you first got it will gradually feel looser over time and cause discomfort and difficulty chewing.

Getting The Most From Your Dentures

One way to extend the lifespan of your dentures in Fairfax, VA is with the addition of dental implants. An implant is a biocompatible titanium post that is placed in your jaw, and the denture is designed to snap onto the implants. In addition to offering superior stability that holds the denture securely in place, implants also stimulate the growth of bone and tissue in your jaw.

The denture is not only stable, but implants eliminate the problem of shrinking jaw bone. By adding implants, Dr. Cerina Fairfax can create natural-looking, functional dentures that easily last as long as ten years.

Denture Consultations in Fairfax VA

If you are considering new dentures or have older dentures that no longer fit correctly, please call our Fairfax dental office to arrange a consultation. We will review your options going forward and work with you to design dentures that look great and last.

TMJ Treatment

Temporomandibular Joint Disorder, commonly known as “TMD,” can negatively impact your life and make it difficult to even get through your daily routine. When you’re living with symptoms of your temporomandibular joint, or “TMJ,” you might not even realize it—dismissing your pain as “normal” or attributing it to a different body part. 

Ignoring or mislabeling your symptoms can be dangerous to your oral health because you need to treat your TMJ if you want to protect your smile. So how can you distinguish between TMJ warning signs and other medical conditions?

First, you need to watch for the following symptoms:

  • Sounds or sensations of clicking, grinding, or popping in your jaw
  • Frequent headaches or migraines, especially upon waking
  • Visible wear and tear on your teeth, including broken teeth and a worn-down appearance
  • Ringing in your ears
  • Constant pain in your jaw, especially when you yawn, speak, or try to chew

Particularly if you experience multiple of these warning signs together, you likely have TMJ.

The next thing to do is to contact your Fairfax dentist and schedule a thorough examination. Sometimes, only a dental professional can tell for sure whether you’re experiencing TMJ. 

If we confirm your diagnosis, then we can provide TMJ treatment in Fairfax, VA to mitigate your pain and minimize your symptoms. Custom mouthguards are usually one of the first treatments we will try for TMJ, but we may also choose to place dental restorations such as crowns or bridges to stabilize your bite. 

Man with TMJ Pain | TMJ Treatment in FairfaxPeople who suffer from temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder might experience pain in their head, neck, or shoulders. Some sufferers experience other symptoms, such as chronic dizziness, earaches, and ringing in their ears.

No one should have to suffer from these uncomfortable and often painful symptoms. Getting TMJ treatment in Fairfax, VA, can greatly improve your quality of life.

What is the TMJ?

The TMJ is the “hinge” that allows us to open and close our mouth and connects the lower jaw to the skull. When the joint becomes inflamed, this can cause pain. It can also limit mobility when sufferers are speaking, chewing, or yawning.

A bad bite—also called malocclusion—can be responsible for TMJ because your teeth do not meet evenly when you bite down. If you grind your teeth, this can also cause TMJ. Getting treated for TMJ will not only end your pain but it can save your teeth from further uneven wear.

Treatment for TMJ might involve having your bite adjusted so there is no more unnatural stress being put on your jaw. Even a small adjustment can make a big difference.

Your dentist might recommend a mouth guard that you wear while sleeping if you are a teeth grinder.

 

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