Our Current Blog Articles
December 12, 2017
Get to Know Dental Implants
Here at Wimmer Dental, serving the Littleton and Centennial areas, we want you to get to know dental implants. This option can be a very natural looking solution to certain dental issues, and they can be so real looking and feeling that many people forget they even have them. Dental implants can be an excellent and long-lasting way to improve your smile.
What is a Dental Implant?
Dental implants position a synthetic tooth root in a patient’s jaw. This root will be set so that it can hold either a bridge or a replacement tooth. Depending on the number of implants that will be done, a session can be completed in as little as an hour or it can take a few hours. In some cases, the implants may be done over multiple visits.
Dental Implant History
Long before today’s version of dental implants, ancient civilizations performed the first dental implants. Mayans actually were the first to try a version of these procedures. They would use tooth-shaped shells and would insert them into their jaws and gums to allow the jawbone to grow around the pieces to provide sufficient support.
The Modern Implant
Once you get to know dental implants, you’ll see that we’ve come a long way over the years. The modern implant can be a long-lasting solution for your dental issues. At some point though, the implant may wear down and a replacement may be necessary. The average span of dental implants is 10 years. The great thing is that implants can be replaced without needing additional oral surgery. Sometimes, with regular dental care and check-ups, your implant can actually last a lifetime.
Dental implants are often cylindrical shaped posts. They’re made of medical-grade titanium because of the material’s durability and strength. Often the implant is attached to a patient’s jawbone during a surgical procedure. The patient usually receives a regional anesthetic and sedation. Following the surgery, the site of the implants is given time to heal and the implant is given time to fuse with the patient’s jawbone.
Generally, dental implants have three parts to them. The first part is the implant which is kind of like a screw that permanently attaches to your jaw. The second part is the abutment which is like a connector. It is permanent but removable by your dentist. The abutment is what holds the tooth or teeth that are being put into place. The third part is the crown which is the part that looks like a tooth or teeth. This part is generally made out of porcelain or zirconium to provide a durable but natural look.
If you think implants would be a good solution for your dental issues, contact us at Wimmer Dental serving the Littleton and Centennial areas, and get to know dental implants.
Endosteal Dental Implants
This is one of the most common implants. The implant is molded into the shape of a tooth’s root and is placed into a patient’s jawbone. This kind of implant can be done for one or several teeth. It can even be performed for an entire set of teeth. Endosteal implants are available in a variety of sizes allowing your dentist to choose sizes that will look the most natural in your mouth.
There are two parts to this type of implant. In the first step, the dentist creates an implant size hole. For step two, the root part of the implant is inserted into the hole. In general, it can take 3 to 6 months to recover fully from an endosteal dental implant procedure.
For patients with narrow or short jawbones, this plate implants may be a more suitable choice. Plate implants involve a long flat plate inserted; the gums are closed with stitches. The jawbone and gums will grow up around the plate and the crown will be connected to the implant after recovery is complete. Recovery from plate implants can take up to 6 months.
This last type of dental implant is only performed when a plate implant is not possible. Custom-made implants act as artificial jawbone and attach to the patient’s real jawbone, if possible. Subperiosteal implants are fit to rest on top of the patient’s jawbone but under the patient’s gums.
Who Benefits from Implants
Dental implants have increased in popularity over the years because they are effective, strong, and durable. After recovery, people with implants have no lists of food to avoid. This is a clear benefit over options like dentures. The people who may find that implants are a great option include the following:
- Patients with missing or damaged teeth. Dental implant procedures can help improve a patient’s smile. The effect can be natural and healthy looking.
- Patients who may need to have one or more teeth pulled because the tooth is failing.
- Patients who are dissatisfied with their smile.
A patient may not be a candidate for an implant if their jawbone is in poor condition or if the patient’s oral health is too poor. Your dentist will provide information for you about what options would be most suitable for your specific situation.
Once you get to know dental implants, you’ll see that it’s like any other kind of surgery. It comes with a risk of infection. Some patients may experience rejection which is when the body treats the implant like a foreign object. In rare cases, the implant may fail.
Your dentist or oral surgeon can discuss the potential risks of having dental implants. Overall, most patients enjoy having dental implants and are pleased with the end result. This is part of the reason implants have grown in popularity and use.
The cost of an implant procedure will vary depending on your situation and your insurance. Discuss your options with our office to determine what the cost may be for you.
You can get to know dental implants by contacting us for an appointment here at Wimmer Dental serving the Littleton and Centennial areas. We can help you determine if dental implants would be the right solution to improve your smile and correct the oral health issue you may be experiencing.
November 17, 2017
All About Botox and Dermal Fillers
At Wimmer Dental in Centennial, we want to share all about Botox and dermal fillers. Wrinkle treatment options are on the rise and are more widely available now more than ever before. You can get treatments over-the-counter and now many healthcare providers, like our own Wimmer Dental, offer treatments for those who want longer-lasting options. Botox and dermal fillers are two of these longer-lasting options.
Both Botox and dermal fillers are used to treat facial wrinkles. Both also are administered via injections, often in multiple locations. Though they are similar, they are not the same and they are not used in the same ways. So let’s talk all about Botox and dermal fillers.
Botox is a kind of muscle relaxer that is made from bacteria, called botulinum toxin type A. It has been available for over twenty years. It has been used as a treatment for neurological disorders that result in muscle weakness as well as for migraines. Botox is also used to treat other medical issues.
When Botox is used for treating wrinkles and it is usually used on dynamic wrinkles. These are the wrinkles that occur as a result of using your facial muscles to form expressions. Such wrinkles are usually located around your eyes and mouth. They are also found between your eyebrows. As people age, these dynamic wrinkles become more pronounced and can result in people feeling like they look tired or grumpy all the time. Botox relaxes the dynamic muscles so they don’t move and this reduces the dynamic wrinkles in your face.
Botox is not used for wrinkles caused by the breakdown of collagen. Here at Wimmer Dental serving the Centennial and Littleton areas, we inject Botox into the muscles that are responsible for those dynamic wrinkles you would like treated. The whole process is very quick and within two weeks you will see a noticeable difference.
Dermal fillers are primarily used for smile lines, but can also be used to plump up areas of the face and lips. Sometimes they can be used to reduce the appearance of scarring. Dermal fillers are not approved for use on other parts of the body. Some of the dermal fillers available include:
- Calcium hydroxylapatite
- Hyaluronic acid
- Poly-L-lactic acid
- Polymethylmethacrylate beads
Botox injections are very effective and the side effects are minimal. The most common side effects, such as bruising, disappear after a short period of time, sometimes only a couple days. Results are clear within a week or sometimes a little bit longer. There are a few medications that interfere with the effectiveness of Botox. You should consult with your provider for information on side effects, contraindications, as well as any questions you have.
Botox treatments last for approximately 3 to 4 months. To maintain the improvements of the treatments, you will need to have repeated sessions.
Dermal Filler Effectiveness
Dermal fillers are also highly effective and severe side effects are rare. Each dermal filler lasts for a different length of time and is made of different materials.
- Calcium hydroxylapatite can last up to approximately 18 months and is composed of a temporary gel substance
- Collagen can last four months.
- Hyaluronic acid can last as long as 12 months, though some patients need maintenance after six months.
- Poly-L-lactic acid is a man-made material that lasts for approximately two years though there are some reports of longer periods.
- Polymethylmethacrylate beads is a permanent dermal filler.
With some dermal fillers, an allergy test may be recommended to ensure that the treatment will be safe for you. Your provider will have recommendations to minimize any common side effects. Be sure to discuss which treatment may be best for your situation and be sure to ask questions.
Both Botox and dermal fillers have side effects. The most common side effects are swelling and bruising. For each product, there are different potential side effects that you should discuss with your provider.
The costs for Botox and dermal fillers vary. Insurance companies generally will not cover these sorts of treatments. Some providers will work with you on a payment plan or financing. You should discuss the possibility of these options with your provider if you need them.
These procedures do not take very long, most of them only last a few minutes. You may need to have a consultation appointment first and possibly a follow-up appointment to ensure you are pleased with the results. Some offices may not require multiple appointments, so this may vary by provider. Overall, Botox and dermal fillers do not take much time and can have great results.
The overwhelming majority of patients are pleased with the results of the Botox and dermal filler treatments. Many patients enjoy feeling younger and more youthful as a result of their treatments. Given the minimal side effects and how pleased patients are with the outcome, this explains why these procedures have been in use for so many years.
Questions to Consider
When discussing potential Botox or dermal filler injections, here are some questions you may want to explore with your provider:
- How satisfied have your previous patients been?
- What qualifications do you have?
- Do you have any examples and pictures of before and after to show me?
- What after-care will I need?
- What products do you use and recommend and why?
- What are the potential side effects?
- Are there any conditions that would preclude me from using your available products?
It is important to be sure that you and your provider have a clear understanding of your treatment plan and that any concerns you may have are fully addressed ahead of your chosen treatment.
If you are interested in Botox or dermal fillers, contact us at Wimmer Dental serving the Littleton and Centennial areas. We know all about Botox and dermal fillers. We can discuss your needs and expectations to determine the best options for you.
October 19, 2017
About TMJ and Its Causes
Here at Wimmer Dental in Centennial, we want to share a little about TMJ and its causes. A lot of people suffer from TMJ or TMD. If you are experiencing facial or jaw pain, perhaps a toothache or issues chewing, you may be wondering whether you have TMJ or TMD.
On either side of your head, there are temporomandibular joints (TMJ). These joints work in conjunction with your ligaments, muscles, and bones. All together, they are what enables you to speak, eat, yawn, chew, and more. Often mistakenly called TMJ, temporomandibular disorders (TMD) are conditions that can cause your temporomandibulars to stop working properly.
According to the American Dental Association over 15% of Americans suffer from TMD that cause chronic facial pain, headaches, earaches, and jaw pain. TMD can be a temporary issue for some but for others, the condition can be long-lasting. Women tend to suffer from TMD more frequently than men. The cause is not clear, though many dentists think that problems stem from the jaw joint or the surrounding muscles. Additionally, TMJ issues are associated with the following:
- Clenching or grinding teeth
- Stress, particularly if you clench your jaw or teeth as a result
- Dislocation of the ball and socket disc
- Rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis of the TM joints
- Jaw, head, or neck injuries
To determine whether you have TMD, your dentist will check your jaw and your bite. You will be examined for jaw tenderness or locking of your jaw. Your dentist may also check for clicking or popping noises which may also be an indication of a TMD. Your dentist may also need to take x-rays. If warranted, you may be referred to an oral surgeon to be treated.
If you suffer from any of the following symptoms, you should see our dentist at Matthew Wimmer Dental serving the Centennial and Littleton areas.
- Neck, shoulder, or facial pain when you chew, talk, or open your mouth
- Trouble or difficulty opening your mouth fully and easily
- Jaw locking
- Grating, popping, or clicking sounds when you open or close your mouth
- Problems when you chew or issues when you bite
- Facial swelling, particularly on the sides of your face
- Headache, toothaches, or neck pain
- Hearing loss, dizziness, or earaches
Your dentist will have recommendations for your TMD that may vary based on your situation. You may need to wear a night guard or a splint. Your bite may need correction or you may have specific teeth that need to be treated. You may be encouraged to eat softer foods, avoid chewing gum, and limit your stress over situations that may prompt you to clench your jaw. Surgery may also be needed, but it should only be a last resort.
Now that you know about TMJ and its causes, contact us here at Wimmer Dental in Centennial to make an appointment. If you are concerned about a potential TMD problem, let us take a look and determine the best course of action to provide you with relief.
October 5, 2017
Save Money with End of Year Dentistry
Did you know that you can save money with end of year dentistry? We here at Wimmer Dental in Centennial want you to know how to save some money and get the most out of your dental benefits. So, don’t hesitate to make your appointment right away!
It is a simple thing. Use as much of your dental benefits as possible, before the end of your benefit year, to save yourself possibly hundreds of dollars on preventative treatments and more. If your dental insurance runs on a calendar year, the end of the year is a great time to take advantage of savings before the year runs out.
Here are the basics of how to save money with end of year dentistry.
There is an amount, called the annual or yearly maximum, which is the most your dental insurance will pay for your dental work in one year. The yearly maximum is reset at the beginning of every year (usually on January 1st) and is often around $1,000 (on average). Any unused benefits do not roll forward to the next year so using up your benefits is a great way to make the most of the dental insurance you have.
Your deductible is the amount of money your insurance requires you to pay before your insurance will cover some of your dental needs. The fee varies from insurance company to insurance company. If your dentist is not a network dentist, your deductible is likely to be higher. Your deductible will also start over at the beginning of the year, so it is best to get whatever work done before the deductible resets. The average deductible can be as low as $50, though yours may be much higher or lower.
You pay an amount every month to your insurance company. This is called a premium. Your premium will frequently cover a certain number of dental cleanings every year, as well as other treatments. If a treatment is provided as part of your benefits, it is to your advantage to use them, otherwise, you’re paying premiums and getting nothing in return.
At the beginning of the year, it’s not unusual for your insurance premiums to increase or your benefits decrease. Even your annual maximum may change. Taking advantage of work before the year is over will frequently save you money because the amount you’ll pay out of pocket will typically be lower.
Your Small Problem Can Grow
Waiting to get dental work done risks needing more serious work. Frequently, cavities and other problems get worse with time, making them more expensive to treat. Don’t wait to take care of your dental issues. It truly will save you money.
Save money with end of year dentistry here at Wimmer Dental in Centennial. Use your benefits before the year is over and get your dental issues cared for now. If you need dental work done, call us for an appointment. We will help your mouth feel better and use your benefits before the year is out. It is a great way to save money.
September 15, 2017
What You Need to Know About Dermal Fillers
Here at Wimmer Dental in Centennial, our expertise goes beyond dentistry. Today, let’s talk about what you need to know about dermal fillers. If you are interested in refreshing your appearance or smoothing out wrinkles, dermal fillers may be the right option for you.
Why Consider Dermal Fillers?
Dermal fillers are used to alleviate a number of concerns related to the appearance of aging. Here are some of the issues dermal fillers can potentially improve:
- Dermal fillers can add volume and smooth out your nasolabial folds, those deep creases that run from your nose to your mouth (also known as laugh lines).
- They can add volume to your lips and smooth the lines that tend to appear around the edges of aging lips.
- Dermal fillers can enhance the shape of your cheeks which can assist in making you look younger.
- If you have hollow areas under your eyes, they can fill them out to help make you look more alert.
- They can make indented scars (from chicken pox or acne) less prominent and even out your skin’s surface.
- If areas of your face seem a little gaunt from fat pads shifting, such as in your lower cheeks or temples, dermal fillers can increase the volume.
What are Dermal Fillers and How are They Different than Botox?
Dermal fillers are FDA approved materials, either synthetic or naturally derived, that are injected into the skin. The purpose of using dermal fillers is to plump up the injection area to smooth wrinkles, depressions, or folds. The effects of dermal fillers can last as long as six months and up to two years, though this varies depending on the type of dermal filler used. There are also fillers that are considered semi-permanent or permanent. Those fillers can last as long as five years, with some reports of even longer periods of time.
What you need to know about dermal fillers is that they are not the same as Botox which is frequently used around the forehead and eyes to relax muscle movements and prevent muscle movement that results in wrinkles. Botox is also used to alleviate TMJ issues. Botox does not produce the plumping effect of dermal fillers. Often, patients of Wimmer Dental will opt to have both dermal fillers and Botox injected in different locations to help their face look remarkably younger.
Natural Dermal Fillers
Naturally derived dermal fillers, such as hyaluronic acid, are considered lower risk because these fillers breakdown in the body over time and are absorbed. Naturally derived dermal fillers also have a better track record when it comes to allergic reactions, but what you need to know about dermal fillers is that allergic reactions still do still occur.
Naturally derived dermal fillers do not last as long as synthetic fillers. Some can last as little as three months, while others can last as long as 18 months. Naturally derived dermal fillers will require follow-up injections to maintain the results, sometimes more than once a year. They also come with the risk of migration and lumping, in addition to allergic reactions, though these reactions are generally fairly rare. Plus, if you experience any reactions, they typically dissipate as the substance is absorbed into the body. So any issues are not really permanent, generally lasting only as long as the filler is expected to last.
Synthetic Dermal Fillers
The main benefit of synthetic dermal fillers is that they last longer. They are considered semi-permanent. Some people refer to them as permanent though, because the substances don’t really dissipate. The wrinkles return only because your face continues to age and suffer damage by sun exposure. Synthetic dermal fillers have the same risks of migration, lumping, and allergic reaction. The only problem is that because synthetic dermal fillers are permanent additions to your body, the potential risks can be permanent as well. It is possible to correct unwanted results, but it can be difficult.
Dermal Filler Risks
As mentioned above, the risks of fillers are lumping and migration. Dermal fillers can also cause light bruising. The downside to getting fillers can be how long they last (or don’t). Different fillers interact with the skin differently and there are a number of different injection techniques, some which work better with specific fillers. Some fillers work best in specific injection areas as well. Be sure that any questions or concerns you have are addressed prior to your treatment, and we will provide what you need to know about dermal fillers.
Is There a Dermal Filler that is Considered the Best?
There really isn’t one dermal filler that is considered to be better than others, despite what you may have heard. They all share similar risks (though thankfully, those risks are pretty rare). If you are interested in getting dermal fillers, you can contact us at Wimmer Dental in Centennial for a consultation. We can talk through your questions about different dermal fillers and botox to determine what may be the best option to achieve the results you want.
When to Consider Dermal Fillers
There is not really a best time to get dermal fillers. If you want to have a dermal filler procedure prior to a special occasion, we recommend getting it done a few weeks prior, just in case you experience mild bruising. Dermal fillers can solve some annoying skins issues beyond what even a great skincare product is capable of accomplishing. It is important to recognize that even with great skincare products and a solid skincare regimen, gravity, sun exposure, muscle movement, age, and fat loss will all change how your face ages. Dermal fillers can help you reverse some of the changes that time brings.
Now that we’ve covered what you need to know about dermal fillers, contact us at Wimmer Dental in Centennial if you are interested in a procedure. We can help you determine the best course of action to achieve the appearance improvements you desire. We can help you with any wrinkles or age effects that you’re not excited to see in the mirror.