Garden State Dental of Toms River
1200 Hooper Avenue, Toms River, NJ 08753

Glossary of Dental Terms

A

Amalgam – Material made from mercury and other alloy mixtures used to restore a drilled portion of a tooth.
Anesthesia – Medications used to relieve pain.
Anterior teeth – Front teeth. Also called incisors and cuspids.
Arch – The upper or lower jaw.

B

Baby bottle tooth decay – Caused by sugary substances in breast milk and some juices, which combine with saliva to form pools inside the baby?s mouth.
Bicuspids – Back teeth used for chewing.
Bitewings – X-rays that help a dentist diagnose cavities.
Bonding – Application of tooth-colored resin materials to the surface of the teeth.
Bridge – A fixed or removable appliance that replaces lost teeth.
Bruxism – Teeth grinding.

C

Calculus – A sticky substance (also called tartar) that has hardened.
Canal – The narrow chamber inside the tooth?s root.
Canines – Also called cuspids.
Canker sore – One that occurs on the delicate tissues inside your mouth. A canker sore is usually light-colored at its base and can have a red exterior border.
Caries – Another term for decay, which causes cavities.
Cold sore – Usually occurs on the outside of the mouth, usually on or near the nose or lips. A cold sore is contagious because it is caused by the herpes simplex virus, and it is usually painful and filled with fluid.
Composite filling – Tooth colored restorations, also known as resin fillings.
Composite resin – A tooth-colored resin combined with silica or porcelain and used as a restoration material.
Contouring – The process of reshaping teeth.
Crown – An artificial cover that is placed on the top of a tooth following restoration.
Cusps – The pointed parts on top of the back teeth?s chewing surface.
Cuspids – Front teeth that typically have a protruding edge.

D

Dentin – The tooth layer underneath the enamel.
Denture – A removable set of teeth.

E

Endodontics – A form of dentistry that addresses problems affecting the tooth?s root or nerve.

F

Fluoride – A naturally occurring substance added to water, toothpastes and some rinses and used for strengthening the tooth?s enamel.
Fluorosis – A harmless over-exposure to fluoride and resulting sometimes in tooth discoloration.

G

Gingiva – Another word for gum tissue.
Gingivitis – A minor disease of the gums caused by plaque.
Gum disease – An infection of the gum tissues. Also called periodontal disease.

I

Impacted teeth – A condition in which a tooth fails to erupt or only partially erupts.
Implant – A permanent appliance used to replace a missing tooth.
Incisor – Front teeth with cutting edges; located in the center or on the sides near the front.
Inlay – An artificial filling made of various materials, including porcelain, resin, or gold.

L

Laminate veneer – A shell that is bonded to the enamel of a front tooth. The shell is usually thin and made from porcelain resin.
Laser – Light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation. A single wavelength beam of highly concentrated energy.

M

Malocclusion – Bad bite relationship.
Mandible – The lower jaw.
Maxilla – The upper jaw.
Molar – Usually the largest teeth, near the rear of the mouth. Molars have large chewing surfaces.

N

Neuromuscular Dentistry – are more than the aches and pains felt in around the neck and head that are associated with your teeth and jaw.

O

Onlay – A filling designed to protect the chewing surface of a tooth.
Orthodontics – A field of dentistry that deals with tooth and jaw alignment.
Overdenture – A non-fixed dental appliance applied to a small number of natural teeth or implants.

P

Palate – Roof of the mouth.
Partial denture – A removable appliance that replaces teeth. Also called a bridge.
Pedodontics – A field of dentistry that deals with children?s teeth.
Perio pocket – An opening formed by receding gums.
Periodontal disease – Infection of the gum tissues. Also called gum disease.
Periodontist – A dentist who treats diseases of the gums.
Permanent teeth – The teeth that erupt after primary teeth. Also called adult teeth.
Plaque – A sticky, colorless substance that covers the teeth after sleep or periods between brushing.
Posterior teeth – The bicuspids and molars. Also called the back teeth.
Primary teeth – A person?s first set of teeth. Also called baby teeth or temporary teeth.
Prophylaxis – The act of cleaning the teeth.
Prosthodontics – The field of dentistry that deals with artificial dental appliances.
Pulp – The inner tissues of the tooth containing blood, nerves and connective tissue.

R

Receding gum – A condition in which the gums separate from the tooth, allowing bacteria and other substances to attack the tooth?s enamel and surrounding bone.
Resin filling – An artificial filling used to restore teeth. Also called a composite filling.
Root canal – A procedure in which a tooth?s nerve is removed and an inner canal cleansed and later filled.
Root planing – Scraping or cleansing of teeth to remove heavy buildup of tartar below the gum line.

S

Sealant – A synthetic material placed on the tooth?s surface that protects the enamel and chewing surfaces.

T

TMJ – Temporomandibular joint disorder. Health problems related to the jaw joint just in front of the ear.
Tarter – A hardened substance (also called calculus) that sticks to the tooth?s surface.

V

Veneer – A laminate applied or bonded to the tooth.

W

Whitening – A process that employs special bleaching agents for restoring the color of teeth.
Wisdom tooth – Third set of molars that erupt last in adolescence.

Read What Our Patients Say
Patient Reviews
There are so kind and always answer my questions. I just got my Invisalign today and I love it. Their the best !!
Micaela C.
Love it here. Everyone is extremely friendly and very gentle :-)
Alex N.
I’m so glad we switched to garden state dental! Love the smaller office feel and the entire staff is friendly and welcoming. We just brought my 3 year old daughter to her first appointment and it […]
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I would recommend Garden State Dental to anyone who is looking for a new or to change their current. My experiences with everyone there has been nothing but exceptional. My “fears” of […]
Diane P.
Everyone from the front desk to the dental hygienist to the dentist were very informative and professional. I am very glad I chose Garden StateDental as my dentist.
Kevin D.
Everyone in the office is always courteous and kind and always greet you with a smile the doctors and the staff are very nice and caring always makes you feel comfortable
Kathleen S.
I have been phobic of dentists for many years, until now. The staff and Dr. Mike are so calming and look out for your every need, not just your teeth. I would never go to any other dentist office […]
Yvonne H.
I wouldnt go anywhere else for my dentisty services! Love my hygentist Kathy! She is thorough and so very pleasent!! The staff is always courteous and professional!
Lori D.
Dr. Aiello did my orthodontic treatment and I had a wonderful experience with the doctor and the staff!
Autumn L.
We have been using Garden State Dental for several years now and are very happy with the service they provide. My daughter just got her braces off and we are pleased with the results, thank you Dr. […]
Dawn R.
As usual ALL WAS GOOD. Everyone pleasant and friendly.
Joanne H.
Very good experience, Kathy is a very competent hygienist. Dr. Aiello came in to check X-rays and completed my visit promptly.
Leonard W.
Amazing staff, wonderful doctors and also great with my kids!
Jennifer N.
Great place, great people
James D.
Dr Aiello is the best! Patient, gentle, thorough and efficient. I’ve never trusted and dentist in my life and am not a fan to have to go but with Dr Aiello you’re in good hands!
Danielle M.
I was nervous since it was my first time In 31 years seeing another dentist other than the one I went to my whole life! I got there and the experience was amazing from Bernie at the front desk to […]
Dana M.
We all love Dr. Mike and his staff. They are soft spoken to the kids so the kids always feel comfortable and calm. We completely trust this office and will definitely recommend to others.
Angeline D.
My experience was great and staff was wonderful
Kimberly D.
Top quality dental care by s staff who pits patient first. I highly recommend this facility
Alan T.
Friendly staff, always accommodating
Colleen S.
Office Hours
Mon. – 9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Tue. – 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wed. – 9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Thu. – 8:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Fri. – 9:00 AM - 2:00 PM

Alternating Fridays

Phone: (732) 276-4136
Fax: (732) 240-3152
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Office Hours
  • Monday 9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
  • Tuesday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Wednesday 9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
  • Thursday 8:00 AM - 7:00 PM
  • Friday 9:00 AM - 2:00 PM
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  • Phone: (732) 276-4136
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