Posts for: February, 2016

By Michael C Scheske, DDS, PC
February 22, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Root Canals  

Root canals offer an excellent way to treat infected teeth and prevent tooth loss. Michael C Scheske, DDS, PC, who offers root canal root canalstreatment in Union, MO, explains why you might need a root canal and how this important treatment can help you.

Why do I need a root canal?

You may need a root canal if there is an infection or inflammation in the pulp at the center of a tooth. Inflammation and infection can occur due to a variety of reasons, including:

  • Cracks or chip in the teeth
  • A broken tooth
  • Frequent dental work on a tooth
  • A large, deep cavity
  • Trauma

What symptoms may indicate that I need a root canal?

As you can imagine, inflammation and infection can cause significant pain, much more than is common with a cavity. You might notice this pain when you use the tooth to bite or chew, or it can occur during or after you eat or drink hot or cold foods and beverages. In some cases, the pain may be constant. Your gums might feel sore near the tooth, and you may see a small bump or pimple on the gum.

Why should I save the tooth?

Removing the tooth might seem like the simplest option when you have these symptoms, but extracting a tooth can cause several problems. Missing teeth can change your bite and make it more difficult to chew food. Your tooth not only helps you bite and chew, but also keeps your jawbone strong by constantly stimulating the bone. A missing tooth may also have a negative effect on surrounding teeth, which will try to fill the space in your mouth. Unfortunately, this will cause your remaining teeth to become crooked as they shift.

What happens during a root canal?

During a root canal, your Union dentist makes an opening in your tooth, removes the infected pulp, then cleans and shapes the root canals that run through the tooth. One or more rods may be placed in the tooth to provide added support. Dentists typically use gutta percha, a durable, latex-based material, to seal the tooth before adding a filling and a crown.

If you're concerned about a problem tooth, call Michael C Scheske, DDS, PC, at (636) 583-8100. In addition to root canal treatment, Dr Scheske also offers a variety of general and cosmetic dentistry services in his Union, MO, office. Call today and get the relief you need!

By Michael C Scheske, DDS, PC
February 20, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: teeth whitening  

There are a number of teeth whitening options to put the brightness back into your smile — from professional dentist office applications to over-the-counter products for home use. But before you decide on an option, you should first consider whether whitening is right for you and to what extent.

Here are 3 questions to ask yourself — and us — before undergoing a whitening treatment.

Do I have any dental problems that make whitening problematic? The underlying cause of the staining may stem from decay, root canal problems or other dental issues; in these cases the underlying cause needs to be treated first, because whitening would only mask the actual problem. You also may not want to whiten your teeth for aesthetic reasons: people with certain features like short teeth or gummy smiles may find these features become more prominent after teeth whitening. It might be more advisable in these cases to consider other cosmetic options first.

How much whitening do I really need to improve my smile? One of the biggest myths about teeth whitening is the brighter the shade the more attractive the smile. A truly attractive tooth color, however, is more nuanced, and every person’s ideal color is different. The most attractive and natural color is one that matches the whites of your eyes.

What effect will whitening have on existing dental work I already have? In most cases, none — and that could be a problem. Composite resins or ceramic dental material have their color “baked in” and bleaching chemicals used in whitening have no effect on them. The concern then is whether whitening nearby natural teeth may produce a color mismatch between them and the dental restorations, resulting in an unattractive appearance.

Before you decide on teeth whitening, visit us first for a complete exam and consultation. We’ll discuss whether whitening is a good option for you, or whether there are other issues we should address first. We can also advise you on products and techniques, and how to get the most from your whitening experience.

If you would like more information on teeth whitening, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Important Teeth Whitening Questions…Answered!

By Michael C Scheske, DDS, PC
February 05, 2016
Category: Oral Health
Tags: oral hygiene  

You may think an office cleaning is mainly cosmetic — giving your teeth that polished look and you that pleasant, “squeaky clean” feeling. But your dental hygienist is doing more than making your teeth look great during your cleaning session — they’re also providing a valuable service keeping your teeth and gums healthy.

Here, then, are 3 things your dental hygienist is doing during a cleaning session that protects your health.

Removing disease-causing plaque. An office cleaning produces more than a fresh and clean smile. Your hygienist is manually removing plaque and calculus (hardened plaque deposits) in hard to reach places or where it has built up despite your best efforts at brushing and flossing. This built-up plaque is a ready source of bacteria producing acids, which give rise to both tooth decay and gum disease. And for actual occurrences of the latter, plaque removal is an important part of the treatment to restore your gums to a healthy pink.

Checking for signs of dental disease. As your hygienist cleans your teeth, they’re also looking for abnormalities in the mouth’s soft tissue — lumps, bumps, sores, or swelling — that may indicate something more serious requiring further examination. They’re also assessing your overall gum health, probing any areas that might indicate gum disease. And, of course, they’re looking for cavities, softened enamel or other signs of tooth decay.

Helping you improve your oral hygiene. As proficient as they are, a dental hygienist can only do so much to help prevent dental disease; the rest — daily brushing and flossing — is on your shoulders. But you’re not completely on your own, because your hygienist is your best personal hygiene training partner: not only can they assess how well you’re doing in your daily regimen, but they can also give you expert advice and tips on improving your brushing and flossing performance.

If you would like more information on the role of your hygienist in your dental care, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Dental Hygiene Visit.”

Union, MO
Family Dentist
301 US Hwy 50 W
Suite C

Union, MO 63084
(636) 583-8100



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