Monthly Archives: October 2013

Options for missing several teeth

I’m about to have six teeth pulled from the same area.  What are my options for replacing the teeth?

Russ S.- Malvern, AR

Russ,

You have a couple of options.  Which you choose is probably dependent on your budget.

The least expensive of the two is a removable partial denture.  These attach to the area without any permanent fixture. There is a downside of bone loss, which is important to consider.

A better option is to get dental implants. However, this option is more expensive. This places permanent fixtures in your jaw and has a restorative tooth on the fixture.

I would look for a qualified implant dentist in your area and let him evaluate your case.  He’ll be able to determine if you are a good candidate for implants.

This blog is brought to you by Libertyville Dentist Dr. David Potts.

Scared of the dentist

I’m engaged. My fiance and I have been talking about combining our lives. I’ll be moving to his city. He told me about his doctor and dentist. I was really embarrased to realize that I haven’t been to a dentist in 15 years.  It’s because I’m terrified of dentists. I was didn’t tell him because I knew that would sound pretty gross.  I’d like to try to get over this before my wedding in six months. Do you recommend anything?

Alicia F. – Albequerque, NM

Alicia,

You don’t need to be embarrased about your fear of the dentist. It is a very common feeling. There are many patients who avoid going to the dentist at all costs.  You are fortunate in that you are not have a massive tooth ache that is driving you to a dental office. That would mean a more complicated (and frightening) appointment.

There are dentists that enjoy seeing fearful patients. They make it their goal to give them a pleasant dental experience and try to change their minds about this part of their health care.

Generally, these dentist will practice sedation dentistry. They may start a fearful patient off using sedation denistry, just to get in there and check what situation their mouth is in during these beginning sessions of getting back into oral health care.

Each sedation dentist is a little different in how they approach sedation. You typically see three levels of sedation available. Bear in mind not all dentists use all three levels. You’ll have to decide what you want and find a dentist who does that.

The first is nitrous oxide. It is sometimes called laughing gas.  This just relaxes you enough to make your dentist visit less stressful.  Many times patients who have trouble getting numb, find that using nitrous oxide relaxes them enough to make their numbing agent more effective.

The next level is oral conscious sedation. You’ll take a pill shortly before your appointment.  This is a pretty strong pill, so you’ll need someone to drive you to and from your appointment. You will be comletely relaxed throughout the appointment.

The deepest level of sedation is IV sedation.  This requires additional training, so not every dentist uses it.

This blog is brought to you by Libertyville Dentist Dr. David Potts.