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Posts for: September, 2017

ATeenwithaMissingToothMayNeedtoWaitonaDentalImplant

There’s a lot to like about replacing a missing tooth with a dental implant. This state-of-the-art restoration is by far the most durable and life-like option available. And unlike other replacement options implants stimulate bone growth, a major concern after tooth loss.

For that reason we encourage getting an implant as soon as possible — for adults, that is. We don’t recommend implants for younger patients because even a teenager’s jaws haven’t yet reached full maturity. Because it attaches to the jaw differently, an implant can’t move with the growing jaw as real teeth do. It would eventually look as if it were sinking into the jaw below the gum line or being left behind as the rest of the jaw grows.

It’s best, then, to postpone placing an implant until the jaw fully matures, usually in a patient’s early twenties. In the meantime, there are some things we can do to prepare for a future implant while also restoring the tooth with a temporary replacement.

As previously mentioned, our biggest concern is bone health. Like other living tissue, bone has a growth cycle of older cells dissolving and newer ones forming in their place. The teeth transmit the pressure produced when we chew to the bone to stimulate this growth. With the absence of a tooth, the adjacent bone no longer receives this stimulation — the growth cycle slows and may eventually lead to bone loss.

We can help this situation by placing a bone graft in the missing tooth socket at the time of extraction. The graft serves as a scaffold that’s eventually taken over and replaced by new bone growth. We can also try to control how fast the graft is replaced by using grafting material that’s slowly removed and lasts longer — often a preferable situation if an implant is years away.

As for appearance, we can create a custom partial denture or even a type of bridge that bonds a prosthetic tooth to neighboring teeth without significantly altering them. If the patient undergoes orthodontic treatment it’s also possible to add prosthetic teeth to an orthodontic appliance.

Eventually, we’ll be able to provide the permanent solution of a dental implant. With careful planning and measures to preserve bone health, there’s a good chance the outcome will be worth the wait.

If you would like more information on treatments for lost teeth in children and teenagers, 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 Implants for Teenagers.”


If you are like many people, the words "root canal" conjure images of extreme pain at the hands of your dentist. Even people who are not restorative dentistrygenerally afraid of going to the dentist mistakenly believe that restorative dental treatments like root canal therapy are abnormally painful and traumatic, but in reality the opposite is true. Most people find that a root canal feels very similar to getting a filling for a cavity, and they actually work to relieve pain from a badly decayed or damaged tooth. Dr. Jim Murphy offers a range of dental services at Proven Dental in Waukesha, WI.

Restorative and General Dentistry in Waukesha, WI

Even with more advanced dental technology and treatments than ever, tooth decay and tooth loss still affect an overwhelming number of American adults of all ages. According to the American Dental Association (ADA), over 90% of adults have at least one cavity, and close to half of all American adults are missing at least one tooth. Tooth decay and tooth loss are not just cosmetic problems, they also affect your oral health. The best way to protect your teeth and gums is to practice good oral hygiene at home and to go to the dentist at least once or twice a year for a check up and professional teeth cleaning.

Treating Tooth Decay and Missing Teeth

Root Canals - A severely decayed or infected tooth, where bacteria has reached the pulp (nerves and soft tissue inside the tooth) may require a root canal to relieve pain and inflammation, and to clear damaged nerve tissue and bacteria. Your dentist will remove the bacteria and any damaged tissue, and seal the tooth to protect it from further decay. Don't worry - with local anesthesia root canal therapy feels very similar to getting a filling.

Dental Implants - Dental implants are a permanent tooth replacement option for healthy adults. Implants are unique in that they replace the root of a missing tooth with a biocompatible titanium screw, allowing for the growth of healthy bone tissue in the gums, which begins to recede when your tooth falls out. Once securely in place, a cosmetic crown is attached, creating the next best restoration to a natural tooth.

Find a Dentist in Waukesha, WI

Common dental problems like tooth decay and gum disease can ruin your smile and your oral health when left untreated. For more information about prevention and treatment, contact Proven Dental by calling 262-650-3000 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Murphy today.


By Proven Dental
September 13, 2017
Category: Oral Health
InTodaysNFLOralHygieneTakesCenterStage

Everyone knows that in the game of football, quarterbacks are looked up to as team leaders. That's why we're so pleased to see some NFL QB's setting great examples of… wait for it… excellent oral hygiene.

First, at the 2016 season opener against the Broncos, Cam Newton of the Carolina Panthers was spotted on the bench; in his hands was a strand of dental floss. In between plays, the 2105 MVP was observed giving his hard-to-reach tooth surfaces a good cleaning with the floss.

Later, Buffalo Bills QB Tyrod Taylor was seen on the sideline of a game against the 49ers — with a bottle of mouthwash. Taylor took a swig, swished it around his mouth for a minute, and spit it out. Was he trying to make his breath fresher in the huddle when he called out plays?

Maybe… but in fact, a good mouthrinse can be much more than a short-lived breath freshener.

Cosmetic rinses can leave your breath with a minty taste or pleasant smell — but the sensation is only temporary. And while there's nothing wrong with having good-smelling breath, using a cosmetic mouthwash doesn't improve your oral hygiene — in fact, it can actually mask odors that may indicate a problem, such as tooth decay or gum disease.

Using a therapeutic mouthrinse, however, can actually enhance your oral health. Many commonly available therapeutic rinses contain anti-cariogenic (cavity-fighting) ingredients, such as fluoride; these can help prevent tooth decay and cavity formation by strengthening tooth enamel. Others contain antibacterial ingredients; these can help control the harmful oral bacteria found in plaque — the sticky film that can build up on your teeth in between cleanings. Some antibacterial mouthrinses are available over-the-counter, while others are prescription-only. When used along with brushing and flossing, they can reduce gum disease (gingivitis) and promote good oral health.

So why did Taylor rinse? His coach Rex Ryan later explained that he was cleaning out his mouth after a hard hit, which may have caused some bleeding. Ryan also noted, “He [Taylor] does have the best smelling breath in the league for any quarterback.” The coach didn't explain how he knows that — but never mind. The takeaway is that a cosmetic rinse may be OK for a quick fix — but when it comes to good oral hygiene, using a therapeutic mouthrinse as a part of your daily routine (along with flossing and brushing) can really step up your game.

If you would like more information about mouthrinses and oral hygiene, contact us or schedule a consultation.