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We are in network with the following dental insurances:
  • Aetna PPO &DMO
  • American General Life
  • Ameritas
  • Assurant DHA
  • Avia
  • BCBS
  • Carrington 500 series
  • Cigna PPO &DMO
  • Connection (GEHA)
  • DeCare
  • Delta Care DMO
  • Delta Dental
  • Dentemax
  • Dental Network of America
  • Great West Healthcare
  • Guardian PPO
  • Humana PPO
  • Lincoln Dental Connect
  • Managed Dental Guard HMO
  • Traditional Medicaid
  • MetLife
  • Principal Life
  • QCD of America
  • Safeguard
  • Signature Dental
  • Uni-Care
  • United Health Care PPO
About Us

In our practice, we offer “Full Scope Oral Surgery”. We specialize in providing surgical care of the teeth, jaws and face. Our practice is limited to surgical services. Although we do not provide general dental services, we are happy to recommend a general dentist, should you need one. Below you will find a list of some of the services we provide. Each one includes a description of the procedure and some important information intended to assist you in understanding your treatment. If the procedure that was recommended to you is not listed, please contact us for information.

Wisdom Teeth Removal (top)

Third molars, also known as wisdom teeth begin to develop during the early teen years and are usually recommended for removal between the ages of 13 and 21. Third molars usually begin to erupt into the dental arch during the later teenage years and early adulthood, gaining the nickname “wisdom teeth”. They are the last of the thirty-two teeth to erupt.

Wisdom Crowding
Wisdom Tooth Crowding

Most people’s jaw bones are not large enough to accommodate this third set of molars, which can pose a number of problems that usually require removal of the wisdom teeth. Some of the problems that can be caused by wisdom teeth are listed below.

Impaction: Impacted third molars occur when the jaw bone is not large enough to accommodate the eruption of the teeth. The third molars become malpositioned and remain “impacted” below the bone and gum tissue. The roots of the teeth continue to grow and the teeth attempt to erupt, often creating pressure on the back of the second molars. This can cause dental crowding, cyst formation or partial eruption which results in pain and infection (pericoronitis). Impacted third molars are usually recommended for removal because these problems can cause serious damage to the adjacent teeth and jaw bone.

Wisdom Infection
Wisdom Tooth Infection
Wisdom Cyst
Wisdom Tooth Cyst

Dental Caries: Dental caries, or tooth decay is the most common problem associated with third molars which have managed to erupt into the dental arch. These teeth are located out of easy reach for a toothbrush or floss. Because they are so difficult to keep clean, they often decay or contribute to decay of adjacent teeth. Removal of these third molars makes dental hygiene more manageable and aids in the maintenance of healthy gum tissue, reducing the risk of periodontal disease in the molar area.

Dental Implants (top)

Deciding how to replace a missing tooth, or several missing teeth requires careful thought and consideration. For some patients, bridges or dentures may be the best solution. For most patients, dental implants are the most successful, long-lasting and cost effective solution. Dental implants replace the missing tooth root, allowing for the construction of a crown on the implant that looks feels and functions like a natural tooth. Dental implants have long been regarded as the “next best thing” to a natural tooth.

Implants Before
Before Implant
Implants After
After Implant

Dental implants are constructed of medical grade titanium which is coated with bio-compatible titanium oxide. The implant is placed into the jaw bone in the area of the missing tooth. The dental implant acts as a replacement tooth root, preserving the surrounding jaw bone, preventing atrophy (shrinking) of the jaw bone, and creating an extremely strong and durable foundation for a crown. Dental implants function and feel like your natural teeth. Research indicates that dental implants are 97% successful over 40 years, which means that once you have an implant placed, it will likely outlast your natural teeth and definitely outlast any restorations you’ve had performed on your natural teeth (i.e.: crowns, bridges, root canals).

Implants Anatomy
Implant Anatomy

Once you decide that replacing your missing teeth with dental implants is the solution for you, it is important to understand the process which you will experience. You may choose to replace just one missing tooth or may elect to replace all of your teeth with dental implants. The process is similar in any situation.

Upon your initial evaluation, your surgeon will evaluate the bone quality in the edentulous area. If the bone quality or quantity is poor, you may require a bone replacement procedure called a “bone graft”. Once the bone graft has healed (approximately 6-12 weeks), the dental implant(s) will be placed. A healing cap will be placed which protects the implant and forms the gum tissue around it precisely to create a natural looking contour when the crown is placed. The implant’s healing process, during which the jaw bone adheres to the surface of the implant, takes approximately 8-12 weeks. This process is called “osseointegration”. Once osseointegration is complete, an abutment, or post, is permanently attached to the implant and a crown can be built immediately upon the post. For multiple implant restorations, bridge work can be placed to restore three missing teeth, or even a complete dental arch. The result is a very strong, permanent, functional and natural looking restoration.

Dental implants are often used to create a strong framework for retention of a complete upper or lower denture. Patients who decide on this solution to loose, ill-fitting dentures will have four to six implants placed in each edentulous arch. Instead of constructing crowns or bridges on the implants, structures called “locaters” are placed on the implants which act as “snaps” for the denture. This technique creates a strong, functional framework which allows for solid retention of the denture, facilitating unencumbered speech and function.

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TMJ Treatment (top)

Many patients experience pain and dysfunction of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). Symptoms of TMJ dysfunction can include jaw pain, headaches, muscle pain, locking of the jaw and neck pain. There are a number of factors that contribute to the dysfunction of this important joint. The most common are outlined below.

TMJ

Malocclusion: Improper alignment of the jaws or teeth. Malocclusion causes patients to overcompensate for teeth that don’t align properly while chewing, talking or swallowing. This can cause a great deal of stress on the joint and facial muscles, creating pain, headaches and often dysfunction of the joint itself.

Bruxism: Grinding or clenching the teeth. Bruxism is usually a reaction to stress or nervousness. Grinding or clenching the teeth creates over-work of the facial muscles resulting in pain, headaches and dysfunction of the joint over time.

Trauma or Arthritis: Injury or damage to the joint or facial muscles. Trauma to the TMJ or facial muscles can result in direct injury to the joint, fracture or stress that can cause pain, headaches and dysfunction of the joint. Arthritis in the TMJ can cause deterioration of the joint that may require surgery or drug therapy.

There are a number of treatment avenues that your surgeon will consider when treating TMJ dysfunction. Most treatments begin as conservatively as possible and usually involve the construction and application of a dental appliance to help reposition the jaw and relieve stress on the facial muscles. Other conservative treatments may include behavior modification, medication or physical therapy. For more advanced cases where extensive damage has been done to the meniscus (disk) inside the joint, or where scar tissue (adhesions) has formed within the joint space itself, surgical procedures may be considered.

There are a number of practices you can employ to alleviate the symptoms of TMJ dysfunction:

  • Avoid chewing gum or very tough, chewy foods
  • Massage and stretch your jaw muscles several times a day
  • Avoid grinding or clenching your teeth. (Your teeth should only touch when you are chewing or swallowing).
  • Use moist heat on stressed facial muscles
  • Use non-steroidal ant-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) sparingly. (Advil, Aleve, Motrin)
  • Consult your oral surgeon or TMJ specialist for diagnosis and treatment options.

Dental Extractions (top)

Once a tooth has been severely damaged by decay, fracture or extensive periodontal disease, it may require removal. If you have been recommended for tooth extraction, a specialist like an oral surgeon will be able to make your experience simple and painless. When a tooth is extracted, the nerves to the tooth are blocked with a local anesthetic agent. Nitrous oxide and/or IV sedation may be used in order to ensure comfort. Once the tooth is completely numb, the tooth is extracted surgically. After the tooth is removed, damaged or infected tissue is removed and the area surrounding the tooth is made smooth and clean. Sometimes sutures may be used to aid in the healing of gum tissue. Multiple extractions can be performed in the same visit, which makes treatment easier for patients who are preparing for partial or full dentures. The dentures can usually be placed immediately following the removal of the teeth, so there is never a need for a patient to be without teeth.

IV Sedation (top)

It is very common for patients to be extremely apprehensive when visiting the oral surgeon. There are also a number of procedures that may be uncomfortable for patients, even with the benefits of local anesthesia and nitrous oxide sedation. For this reason, our office offers IV sedation. IV sedation is a combination of medications administered through an intravenous line which causes the patient to drift off into a peaceful sleep during their procedure. The medications given are powerful; yet short acting, which means that the medication can be administered in such a way that the patient is beginning to wake up as the procedure is finishing. This technique is ideal because it is very safe and extremely effective. Patients who undergo IV sedation recover quickly and are able to walk and talk within minutes of the completion of their procedure.


Oral Pathology (top)

Sometimes patients experience abnormal tissue growths, tumors or cysts in mouth or jaw. If you have been referred to an oral surgeon for evaluation of such a growth, do not panic. There are a number of lesions, cysts and growths that can occur in the mouth and jaw. Most are benign. Your surgeon will usually surgically remove a growth and send it to the lab for microscopic evaluation and diagnosis. Growths in the soft tissues of the mouth can be caused by salivary gland or duct dysfunction, trauma, fibrous tissue formation as well as pre-cancerous and malignant growths. Early detection and treatment of abnormal soft tissue growths or changes is the key to successful treatment. In fact, more than 80% of oral cancers that are detected early are curable. Cysts in the jaw bone which are left untreated can destroy the bone and teeth over time. When you visit our office for a consultation, a portion of your routine examination will include a visual screening for oral masses or lesions. If any abnormality is detected, it will be promptly addressed.

www.oralcancerfoundation.org

Bone Grafting (top)

Many patients who wish to replace missing teeth with dentures or dental implants have experienced jaw bone atrophy (shrinking) as a result of having missing teeth for many years. Patients who have worn dentures for many years often complain that their dentures are loose or their jaw has atrophied to the point that their face appears sunken. A patient who wishes to replace missing teeth with dental implants may not have adequate bone depth or width to accommodate dental implants. Bone grafting is a procedure that is performed in order to replace the atrophied bone and replace height and width in the alveolar ridge, creating ideal structure for denture or dental implant placement. This procedure involves transplanting a patient's own bone from another area of the body or jaw into the atrophied area, effectively rebuilding the structure of the jaw bone. Sometimes, demineralized donor bone may be used in order to supplement the patient’s own bone. Once the bone graft is placed, it may take several weeks for the graft to heal and become solid enough to accommodate the placement of a dental implant.

Corrective Jaw Surgery (top)

For some patients, orthodontic treatment alone is not enough to move the teeth and bite into alignment. Patients who have been diagnosed with a craniofacial deformity, such as open bite, prognathism (protruding lower jaw) or retrognathism (underdevelopment of the jaw) may require surgery in addition to traditional orthodontic treatment in order to bring the teeth and jaws into functional and aesthetic alignment. Patients undergoing corrective jaw surgery will begin their treatment with traditional orthodontic therapy designed to bring the teeth into alignment so that they will be in perfect occlusion once the surgery is completed. Once orthodontics has progressed to a desirable stage, preparation for surgery begins. The oral surgeon will take numerous x-rays and make models of the patient’s teeth. Planning the surgery is as important as the surgery itself, and the surgeon will spend a great deal of time taking measurements, planning the movement of the jaw bone(s) and performing actual surgery on the dental models before treating the patient in the operating room. Once a patient is ready for surgery, the procedure is scheduled and performed in the hospital setting. The jaw bone is sectioned and moved into the ideal position and the bones are secured with titanium plates and screws. Use of the jaws and teeth are restricted for several weeks following surgery. Patients may be required to stay as an in-patient for 2-3 days following surgery. Recovery time varies but most patients return to their normal routine except for their diet within 10-14 days.

Botox® Cosmetic (top)

Botox® Cosmetic is a medication used to temporarily smooth frown lines and wrinkles. Botox®, a purified protein, acts on the muscles that cause facial wrinkles, thus reducing and sometimes eliminating them. Botox® Cosmetic is FDA-approved for the treatment of glabellar (frown line) wrinkles. Treatment is administered via tiny injections directly into the muscles that are responsible for the targeted wrinkle. Results may begin to appear within 2-7 days. Effects of Botox® last anywhere from 2-4 months, and may last slightly longer with repeated treatments. Treatment with Botox is performed in the office. Patients are treated with a topical anesthetic gel prior to treatment in order to provide a comfortable experience. Once the skin in the area to be treated is numb, treatment takes about five minutes. Patients receiving treatment with Botox® can be confident that treatment will not interfere with their daily schedule. Many patients have treatment on their lunch hour, returning to work immediately after the appointment. Visible evidence of treatment with Botox is minimal and patients are able to return to most of their normal activities immediately. Botox® has also been used successfully in the treatment of migraine headaches and myofacial pain.

Implants Before
Before Botox®
Implants After
After Botox®

 

Before Treatment:

  • Discontinue use of any blood-thinning medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen, advil, motrin, aleve, or prescription blood thinners at least 7 days before treatment.
  • Herbal medications such as St. John’s Wort or high doses of vitamin E should also be discontinued at least one week before treatment.
  • Botox cannot be administered in the area of broken skin or an open sore.

After Treatment:

  • Avoid massaging the treated area for 3-4 hours after treatment.
  • Exercise each of the treated muscle groups 2-3 times per hour the first day of treatment.
  • Remain in an upright position for 3-4 hours following treatment. Avoid sleeping during this time so you do not inadvertently lie down on the treated area.
  • Avoid aerobic exercise or bending completely over for 3-4 hours after treatment.
  • A “lazy eyelid” is a possible side effect of Botox® treatment. Contact the office if this occurs.

 

Dermal Fillers (top)

Dermal fillers are a safe, effective way to temporarily fill fine lines and wrinkles, augment the lips and sculpt the facial contours. Our office uses two types of dermal fillers, each suited for specialized purposes.

Restylane: Restylane™ is an injectable gel containing hyaluronic acid, which is the naturally occurring substance in our skin that causes fullness and suppleness. Restylane injections are ideal for filling the fine lines and wrinkles around the mouth (smile lines) as well as lip augmentation. Treatment is safe, effective and FDA approved. Restylane treatment will maintain its best results for about 6-9 months. Treatment is performed in the office utilizing local anesthesia.

Radiesse: Radiesse™ is an injectable gel, similar to Restylane. Radiesse is comprised of hydroxylapatite granules suspended in a gel. The material is more rigid than Restylane, which makes it ideal for deeper lines and wrinkles and for facial sculpting. Radiesse is used to smooth smile lines, build up cheekbones, chins and hollow areas of the face. Radiesse will last for up to two years before touch ups are required. Treatment is performed in the office utilizing local anesthesia. Radiesse is a safe, effective, FDA approved treatment for facial wrinkles and folds.

Dermal fillers are a popular solution for patients who wish to smooth fine lines and wrinkles, and augment the lips or facial structures, but who are not yet ready to commit to a permanent treatment. Your surgeon will help you decide which filler is right for you.

Before Treatment:

  • Discontinue use of any blood-thinning medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen, advil, motrin, aleve, or prescription blood thinners at least 7 days before treatment.
  • Herbal medications such as St. John’s Wort or high doses of vitamin E should also be discontinued at least one week before treatment.
  • Dermal fillers cannot be administered in the area of broken skin or an open sore.
  • Dermal fillers must not be used if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • Talk to your surgeon if you have a history of cold sores or herpes virus.

After Treatment:

  • Avoid massaging the treated area after treatment.
  • Avoid sunbathing or outdoor activity in very cold weather until swelling resolves.
  • Swelling or redness of the injection site will usually resolve within 7 days.
  • Apply an ice pack or cold compress to the injection area after treatment.
  • It is normal to feel a “firmness” in the injected area for a few days after treatment. This will soften up on its own.
  • You may return to normal activities immediately, unless specified by your doctor.
  • Immediately report any worsening/persistent symptoms or side effects to your doctor.


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