Here you can find brief descriptions of dental terminology and procedures provided by Calvin Nguyen, dentist in herndon.  If you have any questions, please feel free to call our office and talk to our friendly Franklin Dental staff.



Also known as tooth colored filling or composite filling is a procedure in which a tooth-colored resin material is applied and hardened with a UV light which ultimately bonds the material to the tooth.  Bondings are tooth colored fillings that can be used to repair decayed, chipped or cracked teeth, and serve as a cosmetic alternative to amalgam fillings. It can also be used to close spaces between teeth or change their shape to enhance your smile.



Brand of porcelain veneer that is made using Ceriante porcelain. Ceriante is exceptionally strong and this characteristic allows Lumineers to be made very thin. By making the Lumineers ultra-thin, no drilling or minimal drilling is done on your teeth. Sometimes it can be done without local anesthetic. Dr. Calvin Nguyen is a certified Lumineers provider.


Veneers (Porcelain Laminates)

Thin porcelain shells that are bonded onto the front side of your teeth to improve your smile. Porcelain Veneers are routinely used to make changes for teeth that are discolored, worn, chipped or misaligned.


Porcelain Inlays/Onlays

Tooth-colored porcelain that is custom made to fill the prepared surfaces of a decayed tooth. Inlays/onlays are used to rebuild severely decayed teeth when a traditional filling may not suffice. They require two visits to complete.


Dental Implants

A surgical grade titanium post is place by one of the doctor’s trusted specialists. As the bone bonds to the post, it forms a secure foundation for the attachment of a crown or a prosthetic tooth that is custom created for you. Implants are sometimes used instead of bridges to maintain the integrity of the teeth on either side of the missing teeth.



Used to fill in the gap created by a missing tooth or teeth. It is made of two crowns for the teeth on either side of the gap with a tooth-like restoration in between. Bridges are supported by natural teeth or implants and are typically made of metals, alloys or porcelain. Porcelain makes the restoration look like real teeth in shape or color.


Root Canal Treatment

A treatment to repair and save a tooth that is badly decayed or has become infected. During this process the nerve and the pulp tissues are removed and the inside of the canals are cleaned and sealed. Without treatment the tooth can become infected and an abscess may form.


Night Guard

A thin piece of hard plastic made from impressions of your teeth placed on the upper or lower teeth. It is hard enough to be durable, but since it is softer than teeth it will protect them from wear. When the night guard is tried in, it is adjusted to fit your bite evenly and smoothly. The delivery appointment will be approximately 30 minutes to ensure proper fit.


Crown Lengthening

When decay is below the gum line it may be necessary to remove a small amount of gum and bone surrounding the tooth. By doing this procedure more tooth structure will be exposed for proper restoration of the tooth. Sometimes a crown lengthening procedure can be done in order to improve a “gummy�? smile because the teeth may appear short. Since the teeth are covered by excess gum your teeth may appear short. By reducing excess gum and bone tissue to expose more of your natural teeth we can create a more natural smile.



Also known as a cap,  is a covering over the entire tooth surface restoring it to its original size and shape. A crown protects and strengthens the tooth structure when it cannot be restored by fillings or other types of restorations.


Denture/Partial Denture

Removable dental appliance that replaces missing teeth and the surrounding tissue. They are made to closely resemble natural teeth and may enhance your chewing ability and the appearance of your smile.



Dental treatment consisting of applying a plastic coating over grooves of one or more teeth to prevent dental caries (cavities).



Invisalign (Invisible Orthodontics) is a way to straighten your teeth without using wires or brackets. Invisalign is a simple system using a series of clear, removable aligners to gently move your teeth over time to give you a natural smile.


Laughing Gas

Nitrous Oxide is a colorless gas with a pleasant sweet odor. When inhaled the laughing gas has the ability to relieve dental anxiety and gives a patient a sense of euphoria.

Digital X-Rays

A form of x-ray imaging where sensors are used instead of traditional photographic film. This technique uses the electronic sensor instead of the x-ray film and captures and stores the digital image on the computer. This image can be instantly viewed and enlarged on the monitor helping the Dentist detect dental problems easier. Digital x-rays reduce radiation up to 80-90% compared to traditional dental x-rays. At Franklin Dental we use all digital x-rays.


Professional Whitening

A treatment used to whiten your teeth using hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. Bleaching may help stained teeth caused by certain foods, coffee, tea, red wines or smoking.


Professional Cleaning

A professional dental cleaning consists of removing plaque and cleaning your teeth in order to prevent cavities and periodontal disease (gum disease).