By Nancy Brumback, Contributing Writer
Shrewsbury – Modern Dentistry of Shrewsbury is growing.
A second dentist, Dr. Luciana Petto Messina, has joined Dr. Todd Pizzi, and the practice is almost doubling the space it occupies to better meet the needs of its patients.
“We'se been in Shrewsbury 11 years now, seven years in this building, and the community has supported us tremendously,” Pizzi said.
He expects the office expansion to be completed by the end of the year, with a more spacious waiting room, more treatment rooms including one for dental surgery, a conference room and an expanded staff lounge.
Dr. Messina started with Modern Dentistry about a year ago and is just back from a maternity leave. She completed dental school in her native Brazil and at the University of Illinois, Chicago, and moved to Massachusetts about 10 years ago. Both dentists live in Shrewsbury.
The practice has also added some advanced technology.
“At the end of last year, we added a CAD/CAM machine that lets us make crowns right in the office. We can now do a crown all in one visit,” Pizzi said, instead of having a patient come in to have a mold made and a temporary crown inserted while the permanent crown is made in an off-site lab, then come back for a second appointment to place the permanent crown.
“We have Wi-Fi so patients can work while they wait for the crown to be made. They can get it all done at once,” he said.
While the practice offers a full range of general dentistry, including children's dentistry, Pizzi noted an increased interest in cosmetic dentistry, improving the appearance of a person's teeth, that has been triggered by advances in techniques and materials.
There have been biological advances, he noted, that enable dentists to prepare the bone and soft tissues so replacement teeth can be permanently implanted, eliminating the need for bridges.
And new materials are both stronger and aesthetically more appealing, he said.
“We now make crowns out of the same material for both back and front teeth. We can just put a block of this material in our machine and mill it to the shape we want.”
To change the color and shape of teeth, he said, dentists now have a choice of materials for veneers. A composite resin bonding material “looks beautiful though it doesn's last as long” as porcelain. Porcelain is more durable and stain-resistant, but is considerably more expensive.
“We always give patients all the available options without prejudice, and let them make their own decisions,” Pizzi said.
These materials are also used in reconstructive dentistry, to rebuild teeth that have worn down over time, “which often happens without patients even being aware of it.” Reconstructive dentistry is a complex process, and Pizzi takes courses in the latest procedures about three times a year.
While Modern Dentistry does not do children's orthodontics, the practice does offer orthodontic work for adults, including clear braces, to improve tooth alignment.
With all the changes in the practice, one key thing has remained the same. “We still have the same staff, and it is such a good crew,” Pizzi said.
For additional information about the practice and the services available, visit Modern Dentistry's recently developed website, www.shrewsburydentist.com, where patients can also download information forms to fill out in advance and schedule appointments.
Modern Dentistry of Shrewsbury is located at 307 Grafton St. in Shrewsbury, near the intersection of Routes 9 and 140, 508-842-8838.