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Air Abrasion

Our practice has included the use of air abrasion as part of our commitment to minimally invasive dentistry. 

Air abrasion is part of today's minimally invasive dental care technique.  Air abrasion is similar to sandblasting, in that tiny particles are propelled toward small areas of decay to remove them.  A composite filling is then bonded to seal the tooth from further harm. Our practice has multiple air abrasion units.

An anesthetic is not usually required for this procedure, which means the dentist can treat multiple teeth in a single appointment.  The goal of air abrasion is to pinpoint and remove early areas of decay, while preserving more of the natural tooth.  The combination of air abrasion and composite resin fillings quickly and comfortably restores functionality and strength to the teeth.

Here are some of the main advantages associated with air abrasion:

  • Only removes decayed tooth structure
  • "Numbing" is usually avoided
  • Can avoid the sound of the "drill" for patients
  • Procedure is done quickly

When can air abrasion be used?

Air abrasion is suitable for small cavities on the chewing surfaces of teeth as well as cavities on the pits located on the cheek or tongue sides of the mouth. We use air abrasion prior to placing sealants on all teeth. Sometimes, we will use air abrasion in an attempt to remove stain that is on the surface or for a microabrasion procedure. As with many dental procedures, air abrasion is not necessarily suitable for every person. Amalgam (silver fillings) cannot be removed with air abrasion and cavities that occur between the teeth cannot be prepared with air abrasion.


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