Procedures

Invisalign

Have you always dreamed of having straighter teeth?

Straighter teeth can give you not only a lot to smile about, but also can lead to healthier gums, easier cleanings, improved chewing and speech, and decreased risk of dental trauma and abnormal wear.

Invisalign is the clear way to straighten teeth. These clear aligners are removable, so that means that during treatment you can still eat healthy foods―such as raw apples and carrots―without worry of popping off brackets.

Brushing and flossing are easy procedures during treatment, as well.

Dr. Hurd is regarded as the best cosmetic dentist in Lompoc, CA and has been for over 30 years. Call today for a free consultation to see if you qualify for Invisalign.


Dental Examination and Cleanings

 Always remember that your mouth is the gateway to your health!
An annual dental check-up is a valuable part of your health maintenance in a number of ways.

  • Cost Savings: When discovered early and treated soon thereafter, tooth decay―which has the ability to grow and spread–will affect a smaller area of the tooth. When fewer surfaces of the tooth require restoration, the cost is more affordable.
  • Cancer Screening: Oral cancer is most often detected by your dentist, not your physician. Be aware of irregular, raised spots on (or under) your tongue, palate or gums.
  • Thyroid Check: Your dentist palpates for irregular masses on the neck and near the thyroid.
  • Low Radiation X-rays: Diagnostic capability is enhanced when x-rays are taken the day of your dental exam because a visual exam only offers an incomplete picture of your dental health. X-rays gain visual access to the areas between the teeth. Emitting only a miniscule dose of radiation, digital x-rays have the added value of being instantly available for viewing by both the dentist and patient. A full-mouth set (pictures of anterior as well as posterior teeth) is usually taken at five-year intervals. Bitewing x-rays, a set of four x-rays of posterior teeth, are taken annually.
  • Full Service Family Dentistry: Excellent dental care is available locally in semi-rural Lompoc. Dental fees are more affordable here than in larger cities.
  • Dental Prophylaxis: Cleanings are performed by Registered Dental Hygienists. Our RDH staff has over 35 years of hygiene experience. They are thorough and care about your comfort, using topical anesthetic (or local) wherever sensitive gum tissue exists. Scheduling a regular regimen is important not only for your teeth but also for your gums remain as healthy as possible.

Restorations

Thomas A. Hurd, D.D.S. has been a mercury-free office for over 25 years. No silver amalgam is used as filling material, only nobel metals, ceramics, and composite resin (white to match your tooth). His choice to use this is not about aesthetics, although the appearance is certainly pleasant and natural.

Composite resin bonds to the tooth; amalgam restorations can only fill the void which is created after decay is removed. Metal restorations typically aren’t bonded to the tooth and must rely on micro-corrosion to fill the small voids that naturally occur between the tooth and filling.


Crown & Bridge and Partials & Dentures

Choosing to use Robertson Dental Lab, a high quality, local lab, offers not only premium prosthetics but also creates the potential for quick turnaround times for repairs when necessary. No lab work is outsourced to China or other overseas locations; no patient need worry about mystery metals being placed in his/her mouth. Only high noble metals are used for crowns at Thomas A. Hurd, D.D.S. (This avoids the possibility of allergies to base metals.)


Endodontics

Being a full-service general dentist, Dr. Hurd also treats most teeth that require root canals. Such treatment becomes necessary, for example, when a breakage exposes the live pulp or when bacteria enter the area due to tooth decay or fine fracture, causing an abscess.

Such trauma will require (a) the removal of the pulp, nerve and any adjacent decay and (b) replacement with a special filling material. With the pulp of the tooth removed, a full-coverage crown is often necessary due to significant loss of tooth structure. The crown will enhance the longevity of the tooth.

Saving a tooth via these treatments should be considered a positive investment in your oral health. The short-term, lower-cost option of extracting the tooth only initiates problems associated with missing teeth, in the long run. Long-term consequences can overshadow any apparent savings.


Implants

Improved dental technology offers options for replacing missing teeth.

In decades past, a space between teeth could be replaced with a removable partial or a fixed bridge.

In recent years, more and more patients have chosen to have an implant which is a small metal post placed inside the jawbone which mimics the root of a tooth. Dental implants can be used to help anchor a

  • Single crown
  • Multi-unit bridge
  • A full denture.

Treatment is begun by a periodontist or oral surgeon who places the implant. When the healing process is complete, Dr. Hurd manages the next step which is the creation of the crown, a lab-created “tooth” that will be held in place by the implant. At completion, the implant tooth looks just like your other natural teeth.


Periodontal Health

Are your gums red and swollen? Do they bleed easily? If so, you may be gingivitis or a more serious condition called periodontitis. If left undiagnosed, the progressive damage to your gums and bone can be irreversible. The worst case scenario includes tooth mobility and/or tooth loss. When caught in its early stages, though, treatment can help.

Gum disease should be of particular importance to diabetics. Everyone’s dental health will benefit by eating a balanced diet; limiting snacks; brushing twice per day with a fluoride toothpaste and flossing at least once per day.


Sleep Disorders

If C.P.A.P. has failed you and or you suffer from the effect of snoring, a T.A.P. appliance may give you the relief you need.

Similar to an athletic guard, this two-piece, custom made, patient-adjustable Thornton Adjustable Positioner (T.A.P.) keeps your airway open and improves your breathing while you sleep.

Although snoring and sleep apnea are more prevalent in men than women (2 to 1), research shows that women who suffer from sleep apnea often report symptoms which are commonly misdiagnosed or ignored. These include morning headaches, daytime fatigue, anxiety or feelings of depression and insomnia.