Posts for: February, 2017

By Michael C Scheske, DDS, PC
February 16, 2017
Category: Oral Health
KnowWhattoExpectDuringYourChildsBabyTeethPhase

At no other time in a person’s life will their teeth and mouth change as rapidly as it will between infancy and adolescence. In this short span an entire set of teeth will emerge and then gradually disappear as a second permanent set takes its place.

While the process may seem chaotic, there is a natural order to it. Knowing what to expect will help ease any undue concerns you may have about your child's experience.

The first primary teeth begin to appear (erupt) in sequence depending on their type. The first are usually the lower central incisors in the very front that erupt around 6-10 months, followed then by the rest of the incisors, first molars and canines (the “eye” teeth). The last to erupt are the primary second molars in the very back of the mouth just before age 3. A similar sequence occurs when they’re lost — the central incisors loosen and fall out around 6-7 years; the second molars are the last to go at 10-12 years.

A little “chaos” is normal — but only a little. Because of the tremendous changes in the mouth, primary teeth may appear to be going in every direction with noticeable spaces between front teeth. While this is usually not a great concern, it’s still possible future malocclusions (bad bites) may be developing. To monitor this effectively you should begin regular checkups around the child’s first birthday — our trained professional eye can determine if an issue has arisen that should be treated.

Protecting primary teeth from tooth decay is another high priority. There’s a temptation to discount the damage decay may do to these teeth because “they’re going to be lost anyway.” But besides their functional role, primary teeth also help guide the developing permanent teeth to erupt in the right position. Losing a primary tooth prematurely might then cause the permanent one to come in misaligned. Preventing tooth decay with daily oral hygiene and regular office visits and cleanings (with possible sealant protection) is a priority. And should decay occur, it’s equally important to preserve the tooth for as long as possible for the sake of the succeeding tooth.

Your child’s rapid dental development is part of their journey into adulthood. Keeping a watchful eye on the process and practicing good dental care will ensure this part of the journey is uneventful.

If you would like more information on the process of dental development in children, 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 “Dentistry & Oral Health for Children.”


By Michael C Scheske, DDS, PC
February 13, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: orthodontics   invisalign   braces  

What your family dentist in Union wants you to knowinvisalign

You’ve probably heard of Invisalign, the virtually invisible orthodontic treatment, but you want to know more about it. What is Invisalign? How long does it take? Will it hurt? These are some of the common questions about Invisalign. Dr. Michael Scheske, your family dentist in Union, MO, wants to share the facts about Invisalign and what it can do for you.

When you think of orthodontic treatment, it’s easy to envision ugly metal brackets and wires, but think again! Orthodontic treatment has become state-of-the-art, thanks to Invisalign. Consider these important advantages:

  • Invisalign is comfortable, because the appliances, called aligners, are smooth plastic, with no sharp metal parts.
  • Invisalign is discreet, because the aligners are clear, making them virtually invisible to those around you.
  • Invisalign is convenient, because you can remove the aligners to brush and floss your teeth normally.
  • Invisalign is patient-friendly, because you can remove the aligners to eat the foods you love, without food catching in your braces.

Invisalign aligners may look delicate and beautiful, but they are strong enough to correct the same tooth alignment and bite issues as conventional orthodontic treatment. Invisalign can correct:

  • Rotated or badly aligned teeth
  • Gaps between teeth
  • Overlapping teeth
  • Overbite and underbite
  • Crossbite and open bite

Dr. Scheske will provide your first set of aligners, which you wear for two weeks. You switch to another set of aligners, which you wear for another two weeks. At two week intervals, you will receive a new set of aligners as your teeth gradually move into correct position. Invisalign treatment is completed at nine to fifteen months. Imagine comfortably straightening your teeth for a few months, instead of a few years!

Don’t settle for an uneven, crooked smile or a bad bite when you can have a perfect smile with just one phone call. To find out more about Invisalign, call Dr. Scheske, your family dentist in Union, MO. Get started on your perfect smile by calling today!


By Michael C Scheske, DDS, PC
February 01, 2017
Category: Oral Health
Tags: teeth grinding  
TreatingTeethGrindingNowCouldHelpPreventExcessiveToothWearLater

Your teeth naturally wear as you age, but you may be making it worse if you grind your teeth.

Teeth grinding is a behavior that causes the teeth to gnash, grind or clench against each other generating forces greater than those produced from normal biting. These forces often result in tooth wear that cause not only functional problems but result in a more aged appearance. Grinding occurs while a person is awake, but most often episodes occur while asleep at night.

Teeth grinding is quite common in children, but not usually of great concern since most grow out of it. There's even a school of thought that teeth grinding might even help readjust an uneven bite.

Among adults, though, other factors seem to contribute to teeth grinding. Many researchers believe nighttime grinding occurs as a person passes through different sleep phases including deep REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep. It may also have a connection with chronic snoring.

Certain medications seem to contribute to teeth grinding, particularly psychoactive drugs like amphetamines. Nicotine falls in this category, which could be why tobacco users report twice the incidence of the habit compared to non-users. Teeth grinding is also connected to another fact of modern life: stress. People who grind their teeth tend to have higher levels of anxiety, hostility or depression.

Because there are multiple triggers, there are many treatment approaches. Whatever course we take, our aim is to eliminate or minimize those factors that contribute to your habit. For example, we can create a custom mouth guard for night wear to prevent the teeth from making solid contact and thus reduce the biting pressure.

Perhaps the most important thing is to control or reduce stress. This is particularly helpful at night to prepare you for restful sleep by changing some of your behaviors. We also encourage investigating other stress therapies like biofeedback, meditation or group therapy.

Whatever the means, bringing teeth grinding under control not only reduces problems now, but could also help prevent abnormal teeth wearing and future health issues down the road.

If you would like more information on causes and treatments for teeth grinding, 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 “Stress & Tooth Habits.”












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

Union, MO 63084
(636) 583-8100

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