Your Place for Excellent Dental Services in Mount Pleasant

Healthy teeth have a positive effect on the quality of your life, promoting bright smiles, proper chewing, and clear speech. If you are suffering from dental problems such as broken, decayed, missing teeth or gum disease, Craig Downer, DDS, PLC is here to help.

With the help of technology and a highly skilled team, we can help you regain the full function of your mouth and improve the health and aesthetics of your smile. Call us today to schedule an appointment!


Benefits of Restorative Dentistry

happy family sitting on couch at homeRestorative dentistry involves treatments and procedures that repair or replace damaged or missing teeth. These include fillings, implants, dentures, crowns, and dental bridges.

The benefits of restorative dentistry include:

  • Relieving dental discomfort
  • Enhancing the appearance of your smile
  • Boosting your confidence and improving your quality of life
  • Offering long-lasting solutions to dental problems
  • Improving your oral and overall health

Composite Fillings

3d render of tooth with white fillingFillings help repair chipped, fractured, or mildly decayed teeth. They are also useful in fixing worn out teeth. Fillings restore the health of your tooth by sealing it and preventing future fractures or decays. By fixing your teeth, you regain your chewing and biting function.

Dr. Downer, prefers fillings made of composite. It is a biocompatible material that not only repairs damaged teeth but is also natural-looking and therefore preserves your smile’s aesthetics. Composite fillings bond well with your tooth, making it more reliable.

Inlays and Onlays

Inlays and onlays are pre-molded at the lab and are perfect for fixing minor tooth damage in molars and premolars. Inlays cover the center of the tooth while onlays cover the chewing surface and the cusps. Despite the difference in coverage, inlays and onlays both work to restore your smile and prevent further decay.

Porcelain Crowns

Dental crowns encase your whole tooth to fix a variety of dental problems. They shield your tooth to prevent further damage and make them healthy so you can eat and chew properly.

Dental crowns range from porcelain and porcelain fused to metal to gold alloys. However, porcelain crowns are the most popular due to their resemblance to natural teeth. With proper care, they can last for decades.

Do I Need a Crown?

young man sitting in dental chair smilingSome of the reasons you may need a crown include:

  • Restore worn or weak enamel
  • Reshape a misshapen tooth
  • Protect a tooth after undergoing root canal therapy
  • For cosmetic purposes
  • Repair a cracked, fractured or decayed tooth
  • Strengthen a tooth that has a large filling

The Crown Process

The crown process takes two appointments. The first visit involves taking the impressions of your tooth to mold your temporary and permanent crowns. During the treatment, we start by numbing your tooth before removing any decay and reshaping your tooth to achieve the perfect fit. We then fit the temporary crown and check to ensure your bite is correct.

We send the dental mold to the lab to manufacture your new crown. Once your permanent crown is ready, it is time for your second appointment. We will clean your tooth and fit it with the permanent crown. We also give you care instructions to help your crown last longer.

Are Crown Procedures Painful?

The crown process involves very little pain as your tooth will be numb during the preparation. Although you may experience discomfort or soreness after the anesthesia has worn off, it will be minimal and won’t last long.

Dental Bridges for Replacing Missing Teeth

If you have a missing tooth, a dental bridge can help fill the gap and restore your tooth’s function and smile. Although dental bridges usually replace one tooth, they can replace as many as three missing teeth. There are four types of dental bridges: traditional, implant-supported, cantilever, and Maryland.

Traditional - It consists of an artificial tooth held in place by two crowns cemented onto the neighboring teeth on each side of the gap.

Fixed implant-supported - An implant secures the bridge instead of neighboring teeth supporting the pontic.

Cantilever - It is similar to a traditional bridge but only has one crown. One tooth next to the gap supports the pontic.

Maryland - Maryland crowns require abutment teeth on either side of the gap. Instead of a dental crown, porcelain or metal frameworks bond to the back of the neighboring teeth.

Full & Partial Dentures

hand holding full denturesDentures can be fixed or removable. They are used to replace missing teeth and prevent remaining teeth from shifting. Depending on how many teeth you are missing, they can be full or partial dentures. Complete dentures replace an entire arch of missing teeth while partial dentures are for when you have some healthy teeth remaining.

Implant-supported dentures are fixed appliances supported by dental implants. They are the most stable option and resemble your natural teeth and gums. Implant-supported dentures do not require you to remove them for cleaning; just brush and floss as you would your natural teeth.

How Do I Care for Removable Dentures?

To keep your dentures in good condition, you need to care and maintain them. Here are the care instructions:

  1. Soak your dentures in special denture cleansers when not in use
  2. Rinse them after every meal and brush them daily
  3. Handle them with care so they don’t fall and break
  4. Practice proper oral hygiene to prevent plaque
  5. Seek professional help if your denture chips, cracks, breaks, or becomes loose

Dental Implants

Dental implants are the best option for replacing missing teeth due to their versatility. They consist of titanium posts placed into your jaw to form the root for artificial teeth. Implants are highly secure and can withstand the pressure from chewing. They can also support various restorations ranging from crowns to full dentures.

dental model showing dental implantsOther than offering long-lasting stability, dental implants:

  1. Stimulate the jawbone
  2. Have a high success rate
  3. Preserve the neighboring teeth
  4. Look and function like real teeth
  5. Are easy to maintain

Who Can Get Dental Implants?

To qualify for dental implants, you must have good oral health and sufficient jawbone to support the implants. The best way to know if you qualify is through a consultation with Dr. Downer.

Typically, the cost of the procedure will depend on the number of missing teeth, the materials of your restorations, and the surgical procedures you need.

Removable Dentures VS Dental Implants

Although both dentures and dental implants can replace missing teeth, dental implants offer a more reliable and long-lasting solution as they replace both the root and the crown. They are also more comfortable as they feel and function like your natural teeth and promote bone health.

Removable dentures, on the other hand, are cost-effective, non-invasive, and offer a straightforward solution. However, they are less comfortable, contribute to bone loss over time, and offer limited chewing capacity.

Which Option Is Right for Me: Bridges, Dentures, or Implants?

happy senior coupleIf you are looking to replace missing teeth, bridges are useful for 1-3 missing teeth, while dentures offer an effective solution if you are missing several or all your teeth on an arch.

Implants are the most versatile as they can support any type of restoration. They are firm, natural-looking, and function like real teeth. Although implants are the most beneficial option, they may not be right for all cases. Our dentist will work with you to determine the right solution for your needs, budget, and personal preference.

Root Canal Therapy

Root canal therapy is ideal for treating tooth decay that has affected the nerves. During the treatment, we remove the pulp affected by decay and fill the remaining space with medicated dental materials to help save the tooth and give it full function. We then place a crown on the tooth to strengthen it and prevent breakage.

Root canal therapy saves your natural tooth, allowing you to preserve the structure of your jaw and mouth.

Tooth Extraction

Sometimes, tooth extraction is the only remedy to relieve pain and restore your oral health. Removal may be necessary if you have extra teeth, severe periodontal disease, or pervasive decay or fracture.

Since it is usually our last resort, we determine whether you need a tooth extraction or not. If removal is necessary, we offer simple tooth extractions and can refer you to a talented specialist for complicated or wisdom tooth removal.

Full Mouth Reconstruction

senior man sitting in dental chair awaiting treatmentA full mouth reconstruction combines multiple procedures, both restorative and cosmetic, to achieve tooth and muscle restoration as well as a correct bite. It addresses all serious dental concerns you may have to improve the function, health, and appearance of your mouth.

Since a full mouth reconstruction depends on your specific oral needs, we will tailor your treatment to your unique situation. Dr. Downer, along with our team of professionals, will discuss tooth replacement options, such as dentures and dental implants, as well as restorative options, so you have full confidence in your treatment. We will also discuss cosmetic options such as teeth straightening and teeth whitening.

Periodontal Care

young girl getting a dental inspection in dental officeProper oral hygiene, while it helps to protect your smile, is not enough to keep away periodontal disease. Professional dental cleaning is vital to prevent the accumulation of plaque around your teeth. We recommend that you receive an in-office cleaning twice a year.

Periodontal (gum) diseases are infections that affect areas around a tooth caused by the accumulation of plaque and bacteria. They are accompanied by swelling, reddening of the gums, and bleeding. In advanced cases, periodontal diseases may lead to tooth loss and contribute to other health conditions like cardiovascular problems, diabetes, and lung infections.

Scaling and Root Planing

If you have gum disease, we may recommend a deep cleaning, which involves scaling and root planing. Scaling is the removal of plaque, tartar, and toxins from above and below the gum line while planing involves smoothing of rough surfaces on your tooth. Scaling and root planing help to shrink the pockets beneath your gums and promote healing.

Providing Exceptional Services to the Mount Pleasant Community

Craig Downer, DDS, PLC proudly serves Mount Pleasant and all surrounding neighborhoods. Our compassionate staff is more than happy to answer your questions and help you enjoy our relaxing office atmosphere. Let us help you restore the health and appeal of your smile with safe and durable restorations.

Schedule an appointment today and experience our excellent dental services for yourself.


Contact Us

We encourage you to contact us with any questions or comments you may have. Please call our office or use the quick contact form below.