We are now open!

Greetings to all of our patients!  

I want to take this time to reach out to you all and reconnect so as to let you all know what we've been up to during the Novel Corona Virus Pandemic.  I want to state that our #1 priority is, and has always been the health & safety of our patients, and, of course, to provide to you the highest quality dental care we can!  

I am sure most of you have questions and concerns regarding the safety of dentistry during this time, so we'd like to share the measures and actions we are taking to ensure your safety here at our office.

First of all, the culture here will be a little bit different in the “post novel corona virus world”.  At least until researchers come up with therapies and /or a vaccine!  We will be implementing some new systems in our practice to mitigate the risk of disease transmission here.  

What to expect when you come to the office?  Prior to your appointment, when Diana calls you to confirm your appointment date and time, she will ask a few quick questions regarding your medical status, and any symptoms suggestive of an illness...We ask that if you are ill with a fever, coughing, etc. to please reschedule for when you are well.  

When you come to the office, we ask that you wait in your car in the parking lot.  Diana will be calling you at your appointment time to let you know that your dental operatory is ready for you.  Susie, Chelsea or I will meet you outside to take a quick, touch-less temperature scan of the forehead, and then escort you directly to your treatment room.  

We will be spacing out our patient appointments so that there is only one patient on the dentistry side with Susie and I, and only one patient in the hygiene side with Chelsea.  For the most part, no one is allowed to wait in the lobby until further notice...We will of course, accommodate people escorting children or elderly patients.

All surfaces will be disinfected with Hospital Grade Disinfectants (as we've always done in the past) between patients.  All door knobs, light switches, etc. will be disinfected every 30 minutes throughout the day!  This will mitigate the risk of any infectious disease transmission via surfaces.

Ever since the HIV epidemic in the 1980's, dentistry as an industry has employed “Universal Precautions” (masks, gloves, “single use” disposable equipment, etc.) to mitigate disease transmission.  

The most concerning of transmission routes for infection, including novel corona virus, is via “'aerosols”.  Dentists and hygienists  have used “High Volume Evacuation” (HVE) routinely for decades to capture aerosols generated by dental hand pieces (drill) and ultra-sonic scaling devices.  HVE reduces aerosols by 90% !  

We will continue to use HVE for all procedures that generate aerosols.  In addition to HVE, we've invested in Medical Grade H-13 HEPA aerosol scavengers in our operatories (basically a very powerful vacuum) with a snorkel hose that we can position adjacent to the treatment field to scavenge any aerosol the HVE misses.

We have also invested in nine medical grade H-13 HEPA air filtration units placed throughout the office which will completely clean/turn over the air every 10 minutes, or six times per hour.

Another investment made was having medical grade UVC (Ultra-Violet C) units installed in our Central  Air Conditioning/Heating units that kill Bacteria and Virus as the air passes through. 

Finally, we will fog the office with Hypochlorous Acid, a human safe, yet powerful disinfectant at the end of each day.

We want you all to know that we are taking all possible precautions and measures to ensure your safety, and the safety of our team here!

To further streamline your experience at the office, we will be scheduling return visits for you in the operatory, at the end of your appointment.  We will make available electronic payment options in order to minimize visiting the front desk.

Warm regards,

Dr. Paulerio and Team

Types of Dental Bridges

There are several types of dental bridges available to replace missing teeth. Traditional bridges are supported by two crowns on either side of the gap in a patient’s smile. Typically, these crowns are supported by adjacent healthy teeth. To place this type of restoration, the dentist will need to reshape these teeth to make room for the bridge. In the last 20 years, implant-supported bridges have become increasingly popular. These bridges also rest on two crowns, but the crowns are affixed to surgically placed implant posts, rather than the nearby teeth. Using this type of restoration, a dentist can preserve more of a patient’s natural tooth structure.

Dental Bridge

Dental Bridge
A dental bridge can replace one or more missing teeth in a row.

Cantilever Bridges

To place a cantilever bridge, the dentist will only crown one adjacent tooth. This single crown will support the entire restoration, which typically consists of two pontics. Dentists do not typically recommend cantilever bridges on back teeth. The molars bear most of the force of a patient’s bite. Therefore, a cantilever bridge in this area would be subject to damage and even collapse. Cantilever bridges have largely fallen out of use. However, in some cases, they can still be an excellent option, since they will preserve more of a patient’s healthy tooth structure.

Maryland Bonded Bridges

The Maryland bonded bridge, developed by researchers at the University of Maryland, involves minimal alteration of the surrounding teeth. Instead, the pontic will have two small wings, which will attach to the adjacent teeth. To place this type of bridge, the dentist will simply need to micro-etch the two supporting teeth to create a stronger bond for the restoration. In the past, the wings were always made of metal, which could eventually lend a gray tint to a patient’s smile. Today, however, Maryland bonded bridges are made with resin wings. These pieces can be custom-matched to the blend with the color of the nearby teeth. Typically, dentists will use a Maryland bonded bridge to replace a single missing tooth. In some cases, however, these bridges can replace two or three teeth.

Removable Bridges

Although most bridges are permanently fixed in a patient’s mouth, some people may benefit from a removable bridge, sometimes called a “partial denture.” Like traditional bridges, removable restorations are custom crafted to match a patient’s natural teeth. However, they have a gum colored plastic base and attach to the surrounding teeth with small metal clasps or precision attachments. Removable bridges typically cost less than crown or implant-supported restorations. Nevertheless, they do not offer the same stability or lifelike feel that a fixed bridge can provide.

Crown-Supported Bridges

When someone mentions a “dental bridge,” most people will immediately think of traditional, crown-supported bridges. These crowns are placed directly on top of a damaged tooth. Therefore the dentist must reshape these teeth to make room for the bridge and create a stable base for the new restoration.  One to three pontics attach to the crowns, filling in the gap in a patient’s smile.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Traditional Bridges

The most significant benefit of crown-supported bridges is that the process is quick and easy. It does not involve lengthy treatment. Typically, after just two office visits, patients leave the office with full dental functionality. However, patients should be aware that the crowning procedure will slightly weaken the teeth supporting the restoration. In addition, unlike an implant-supported bridge, a crown-supported restoration will not prevent jawbone degeneration.

Implant-Supported Bridges

The most common alternative to a traditional crown-supported bridge is an implant-supported bridge. A dental implant is a titanium post placed directly into the jawbone. Using an abutment piece, a dentist can secure a custom-fabricated restoration directly to the implant post. In effect, the implant will becomes a new tooth root, allowing for a durable, long-lasting restoration. In fact, with proper care, dental implants can last for decades or more.

traditional vs. implant-supported bridge

Advantages and Disadvantages of Implant-Supported Restorations

Implant placement requires oral surgery. Therefore, patients will face a longer recovery and more post-treatment sensitivity. They may also require additional preparatory treatment, such as a bone graft, to qualify for an implant-supported restoration. Patients should also note that dental implants cost more than traditional bridges.

Despite these initial drawbacks, dental implants offer numerous long-term advantages. In fact, most experts consider implants to be the top method of tooth replacement. They are extremely stable and will never slip out of place. Although they do have higher upfront costs, implants can last a lifetime. Therefore, patients typically do not have to worry about expensive replacements later down the road. Finally, dental implants are the only type of restorative treatment that can prevent jawbone degeneration. The titanium posts replace dental roots, giving off the signals that are necessary for re-mineralization.

Point Loma Family Dentistry team

Point Loma Family Dentistry

Dr. Louis E. Paulerio is a top-rated dentist who is committed to providing the latest dental treatments in a caring, warm setting. He is a member of several prestigious dental organizations, including: 

  • Academy of General Dentistry
  • International Dental Implant Association

He also uses CEREC technology to create beautiful, long-lasting dental restorations in just one appointment. Ready to schedule a consultation at our Point Loma office? Request your appointment online or call us at (619) 223-3811.

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San Diego Office

1635 Rosecrans St
Ste A
San Diego, CA 92106

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