Posts for category: Dental Procedures
Recognizing the signs that may mean you need a root canal can help you ensure you receive prompt treatment. Your Creve Couer, MO, dentist, Dr. Mark Hesker, offers root canal therapy and a variety of other oral health treatments and services.
What do root canals do?
During a root canal, your dentist removes the pulp in the center of your tooth and replaces it with a rubber-based filling material. Root canals are needed when the pulp becomes inflamed or infected.
Although the tissues, nerves and blood vessels that make up pulp played a crucial role in the development of your tooth, they aren't quite as important now. In fact, your tooth will still function normally without the pulp. Removing the pulp during a root canal ends your pain by eliminating the infection or inflammation.
How can I tell if I might need a root canal?
Some subtle, and a few not-so-subtle, signs may occur if you need a root canal, including:
- Pain May Become a Part of Your Daily Life: An inflammation can cause pain that never seems to go away, although it can subside at times. Your pain may worsen when you chew, press on your tooth or eat or drink cold, hot or sugary foods and beverages.
- Your Gum is Sore: The gum tissue around your inflamed or infected tooth may eventually become red or swollen. It's important to call your Creve Couer dentist if red or swollen gums last more than a week. The symptoms may be a sign of inflammation or infection in your tooth or gum disease.
- Your Tooth Looks Different: Changes deep inside your tooth can may cause it to darken.
- You Injured Your Tooth: A root canal may be needed if your tooth was injured or it was knocked out and then reimplanted.
- You Feel Sick: If a bacterial infection called an abscess forms in your tooth pulp, you may feel awful. Abscesses can cause severe, throbbing pain that prevents you from sleeping. Other symptoms may include fever, a bump or collection of pus around your tooth, swollen lymph glands and facial swelling. In addition to root canal therapy, you'll also need antibiotic treatment if you have an abscess.
Root canals help you protect your smile! If you have any of these signs or symptoms, call your Creve Couer, MO, dentist, Dr. Mark Hesker, at (314) 569-3337 to schedule an appointment.
Can you straighten your smile without metal braces? Over 3 million people so far have achieved their smile goals with discreet Invisalign aligners, an innovative orthodontic system offered by your dentist, Dr. Mark Hesker, in Creve Coeur, MD. Custom-crafted Invisalign aligners are thin, smooth, and transparent, giving you a healthy, well-aligned smile and a profound sense of confidence.
The better question may be, "Why not Invisalign?" For the 20 percent of orthodontic patients who are teens and adults (according to the American Association of Orthodontists), Invisalign can be the quickest, most comfortable and truly effective way to correct common problems such as:
- Protruding front teeth
- Orthodontic recession (teeth that shift after braces are removed)
- Tooth tipping
- Tooth rotation
- Congenital absence of teeth
Treatment with Invisalign
After an oral examination and impressions with the sophisticated iTero Scanner, Dr. Hesker can give you a detailed treatment plan and send pertinent information to the Invisalign lab. There, specially trained technicians create 18 to 30 pairs of aligners which snugly fit over your top and bottom teeth. The appliances move teeth into better positions step by step over an average treatment time of one year.
During treatment, you'll visit Dr. Hesker every six weeks so he can track your progress and give you the next sets of aligners in your care plan. You'll wear each pair for about two weeks for 20 to 22 hours a day, removing them to brush, floss and eat.
You can also take them out for an important event such as a job interview or wedding. However, the aligners are so crystal clear no one would notice if you did wear them.
Benefits of Invisalign
There are several, including:
- No irritation of lips, tongue, or gums
- Ease of care—just brush with toothpaste and warm water
- No unusual dietary rules (eat whatever foods you like)
- Improved self-confidence and a smile which is less prone to decay, excessive and premature wear and gum disease
Interested? Call Dr. Hesker's Creve Coeur Office Today!
Dr. Hesker is an expert in Invisalign and can help you reach your smile goals! For a personal Invisalign consultation, please call Dr. Mark Hesker and his Creve Coeur team at (314) 569-3337.
Now you can get a dental crown in Creve Coeur, MO, in just one visit.
If you’ve ever had to get a dental crown before, or if you know someone who has, then you know that it often takes several trips to the dentist to complete the restoration. This can be quite time-consuming and inconvenient for many of our patients who have busy schedules. This is why our Creve Coeur, MO, dentist Dr. Mark Hesker is pleased to announce that now you can get CEREC dental crowns right here in his office in just one visit.
What is CEREC?
CEREC, which stands for chairside economical restoration esthetic ceramics, is an in-office dental system which allows our Creve Coeur, MO, general dentist to design, fabricate, and even place your dental crown all in one appointment. No more waiting around for a permanent crown or wearing a flimsy temporary crown—CEREC technology makes it easy to get the restoration you need as quickly as possible!
What is the Process Like?
The beauty of CEREC lies in CAD/CAM technology. The first thing we will need to do is take impressions of your teeth. When most people think about getting impressions they imagine that awkward putty-like material being applied to their teeth where it is left to harden. It was a process that wasn’t always the most pleasant, but now that’s changed. CEREC doesn’t use these messy impressions, instead, our dentist can take even more precise measurements of your teeth with a simple digital camera.
Once these images are taken, they are uploaded to our computer, where we will get to work creating a crown that will fit perfectly over the damaged tooth. The CAD software will help us design your crown. Once this phase is complete, we will choose a porcelain block that most closely matches the shade of your tooth. The porcelain block will then be placed into the in-office milling station.
The milling station will then be fed the exact measurements from the CAD software, allowing it to chisel out a perfect restoration from the block of porcelain. Once the crown has been fabricated, it’s time to check the fit before cementing it permanently into place. That’s all there is to it. You’ll leave our office with a brand new, fully restored smile!
We know that you lead a busy life, but your busy life should never get in the way of the dental care you deserve. If you are interested in what CEREC crowns can offer your smile, call our Creve Coeur dental office today at (314) 569-3337.
Patients who have missing teeth or major tooth and gum problems often have questions about dental implants. Implants are the modern solution for replacing teeth and are now often preferred over other solutions like dentures and bridges. Here are a few of the most common frequently asked questions about dental implants, answered. Having more knowledge of this dental treatment may inspire you to take action and call your Creve Coeur, MO dentist to see if you’re a candidate for this procedure.
How Do Dental Implants Work?
Dental implants are designed to serve the same purpose as the root of a tooth. They are small titanium devices that resemble screws that are inserted into the bone tissue below the gumline. When the implant heals into the bone, which may take several months, an abutment and permanent crown are placed on the top. With a porcelain or ceramic crown, the implanted tooth is indistinguishable from your other teeth.
Why Are Dental Implants the Best Solution?
The main reason why dental implants are the ideal solution is that they are permanent. Once they’re installed, they’re no different than any of your other teeth in terms of function and appearance. They also help keep the bone tissue healthy and strong. When you get dentures or bridges, the bone tissue can degrade over time.
Who Can Get Dental Implants?
Only patients who have generally good dental health can get dental implants. Viable bone tissue is needed to ensure that the implants will stay rooted. That’s why it’s important to see a dentist for a tooth implant as early as possible. In some cases, a bone grafting procedure can help improve a patient’s chances of having a dental implant integrate successfully.
How Long Will Dental Implants Last?
For patients of a certain age, a dental implant has a good chance of lasting for a lifetime. The crown part of the implant can last for up to 15 years before it may need to be replaced. Seeing your dentist at least two times every year for professional cleanings and becoming meticulous about at-home dental care will ensure that the implant (and your other teeth) stays strong and healthy.
Contact your Creve Coeur, MO Dentist
Dental implantation is a straightforward and effective procedure that can help improve your dental health and the appearance of your smile. Call your Creve Coeur, MO dentist to schedule an appointment.
Many Hollywood luminaries use porcelain veneers to enhance their smiles. Take actress and singer Hilary Duff, who, according to People magazine, had veneers placed on her two front teeth after chipping them on a microphone during what must have been an extremely energetic performance.
Well, you don't have to be a Hollywood star to benefit from a smile enhanced with porcelain veneers. If you have small chips, cracks, slight tooth rotations or minor spacing problems, veneers may be able to give you back your smile — or an even better one.
The word “veneer” refers to a super-thin covering, and in dentistry a veneer is a thin layer of porcelain that replaces your natural tooth enamel. Porcelain is the material of choice because of its strength, translucency, and ability to resist erosion.
In the right hands, dental porcelain can mimic tooth enamel perfectly. To make veneers, a skilled dental technician will mix porcelain powder (in a shade specified by the dentist) with water and then fire the material in an oven like pottery; the porcelain is built up in layers for a truly lifelike effect.
Before a veneer is bonded to a tooth, often we need to remove a tiny bit of the tooth's existing enamel so that the final effect will not be too bulky. The procedure is virtually painless and can be completed in as little as two visits. Because enamel is removed, this particular cosmetic treatment is not reversible. Sometimes veneers can be added directly onto the tooth surface without any tooth reduction and therefore are reversible if used in this way.
Once you have veneers, please keep in mind that while extremely strong, porcelain veneers are not indestructible; you won't want to do things like crunch ice or break nuts open with your teeth. And if you are a teeth-grinder, you should wear a nightguard to protect your beautiful new smile. With proper care, your veneers will last 20 years or more.
If you would like more information about porcelain veneers, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Smile Design Enhanced With Porcelain Veneers.” Dear Doctor also has more on “Cosmetic Dentistry: A Time For Change.”