We are happy to see children in our office. We recommend that the first appointment be schedule between 18 months and 2 years. This visit allows them to get to know the dentist and the experience and is usually just an oral exam. We will also work with you and your child to learn how to take care of their teeth. "Baby" teeth are important to the overall health of your child and the condition of their permanent, "adult" teeth. Regular check-ups, fluoride and sealants on permanent teeth as they erupt will help keep your child's teeth in the best health.
We offer two kinds of whitening procedures to brighten your smile. Custom trays that perfectly fit your teeth can be made in 24 hours and taken home to use with a whitening gel. Trays and gel are usually worn for at least 30 minutes or overnight for about two weeks to get an excellent result. Additional tubes of gel can be purchased at the office if you want to go even whiter or touch up from time to time.
You can also have your teeth whitened in the office in about an hour. We use a concentrated whitening gel to achieve immediate results. This can also be combined with at-home custom trays to get you to your desired shade.
Whitening is safe for your teeth, but it can cause or exacerbate sensitivity. We often combine the whitening procedures with fluoride or other remineralizing treatments to alleviate your symptoms.
Veneers, bonding, tooth-colored fillings and whitening are all available. We want you teeth and mouth to be healthy, but we also want you to love your smile and use it! Sometimes your best results won't happen overnight, but we can still get to that best result. If you want to change your smile, we can discus all of your possibilities in a consultation.
Many of your oral surgery needs can be fulfilled in our office. All teeth will be closely evaluated by exam and x-ray before being removed, and you will be given other treatment options if they are possible. Sometimes you or your teeth will need to see an oral surgery specialist because of the individual tooth, the number of teeth requireing extraction or if you want to be put to sleep for the procedure. In our office, routine extractions are performed under local anesthesia where you are awake but do not feel any pain.
When you are looking for a more permanent solution to replace one or more missing teeth, implants may be at the top of your list. After a consultation with Dr. Martinsen, you will be referred to a specialist for the placement of a titanium implant post in the jaw bone, then come back to our office after healing to finish the treatment with a special crown. Implants do not require changes to the teeth on either side of the space (like a bridge) and they are permanently in your mouth (unlike a removable appliance). Dental implants are becoming more and more common, have great success rates, and can last more than twenty years.
When you are missing one, many or all of your teeth, we can fabricate removable dentures or partial dentures to fill in the spaces and restore your confidence as well as you ability to speak and chew efficiently. Over four or more appointments, we take careful measurements and evaluate your mouth, jaws, former or existing teeth, and your opinion to create an appliance that feels and looks great.
It may take some time for your mouth to adjust to your new denture or partial, usually 6-8 weeks. Even if your teeth are removable, we need to examine you and your dentures at least once a year to ensure that your mouth is healthy and that the fit is still ideal. If your dentures are loose or just don't fit like they used to, please consult us to see if adjustments may help.
The roots of your teeth have nerves and blood vessels running down the center canals. When a tooth becomes damaged or infected by bacteria (an antibiotic cannot clean out this type of infection), the tooth must have root canal therapy performed. Don't worry - this is usually a very painless procedure! The tooth is numbed, has a small hole made in the biting surface or back side, and the nerves and blood supply are removed. The insides of the canals are then cleaned, sterilized and filled with a special material. Most teeth that have had root canal therapy will need a crown to keep the tooth stable.
The alternative choice to treat an infected or traumatized tooth is to extract it, but we believe it is important to try to keep as many of your natural teeth as possible. Root canal therapy is over 95% effective. Some teeth (and their owners) may need to visit a root canal specialist because of their shape or location in the mouth or if the tooth requires a second treatment of endodontic therapy.
While we try to prevent cavities from forming, we treat them conservatively and as needed. Taking into consideration the condition of the tooth and cavity, we will recommend tooth-colored resin or silver amalgam fillings to restore your tooth. Both materials have been extensively tested and are safe for your mouth.
If your tooth breaks or has fillings and/or cavities that cover more than half of the tooth, then you may need a crown (cap). Bridges are similar to crowns but also used to replace missing teeth.
Crowns and bridges both traditionally take two appointments to create. At your first appointment, we numb the tooth and trim it down, take an impression of the tooth and gums, and make a temporary crown(s) to protect your tooth. Then we send a model of your teeth to a dental laboratory where they make your custom crown or bridge out of gold or tooth-colored porcelain materials. At the second appointment, we remove the temporary crown and cement your new crown or bridge on the teeth. A successful crown or bridge may last about five years. With good oral hygiene, it's not uncommon for them to last much longer. Dr. Valerie Martinsen Seifert recently added CEREC crown in a day technology to the practice. Now your crown or bridge can be done in one visit with no impressions and no temporaries!
We perform a comprehensive head & neck and intraoral exam for every new patient to establish your individual needs and allow us to work together to create a treatment plan that works for you. The number and type of x-rays you need will be determined by the condition of your teeth. Oral cancer screenings are, at a minimum, performed at each patient exam and with your regular dental cleaning.
For most patients, we recommend regular dental cleanings every six months. Depending on the health of your teeth and gums, we may want to see you more often.
We also offer oral hygiene instruction, nutritional counseling for cavity prevention and periodontal health, fluoride treatments for children and adults, and sealants.