General Dentistry Specific Procedures

Lakes Park Children’s Dentistry & Orthodontics is happy to announce our new General Dentist to the practice. Dr. Erik Skates is a doctor of medicine in dentistry and we are now offering preventative, restorative and cosmetic procedures in our office. 

Please read below for some of the procedures that we are now offering our parents and grown children.

 

Sealants >

Small grooves and pits in teeth are common sites for cavities. Sealants fill these grooves and pits to prevent food particles from getting stuck and causing tooth decay. If properly cared for with brushing and flossing, sealants can last for years. Patients are given care guidelines to help protect the sealants. Sealants are generally placed on first and second molars; these are permanent teeth that are meant to last a lifetime.

Procedure: The treated teeth are cleaned and conditioned and then the sealant material is placed in the desired area and treated with a special light to harden it. Patients are able to eat and drink immediately afterwards.

Fluoride and Varnish Treatments >

Fluoride is a naturally occurring substance that strengthens the enamel. Used regularly in small amounts, such as in toothpaste, it helps to avoid tooth decay. The dentist recommends office fluoride treatments for the health of your teeth every 6 months.

Procedure: Topical fluoride comes in gels, foams or varnishes.The fluoride is painted on the teeth which helps protect and strengthen the teeth.

Crowns >

A crown is an artificial covering that fits over the existing tooth structure. We use aesthetic tooth-colored crowns for the front teeth that look and feel like the natural tooth and stainless steel crowns for the back teeth.

One indication for a crown is extensive decay that does not leave enough tooth structure to hold a filling. It is also indicated when the enamel is defective on a tooth. Dr. Skates can also create a bridge for multiple crowns, as well as a partial denture.

Procedure: First, the dentist will place a topical gel on the gum area where the injection site will be for the local anesthetic. If the patient is nervous, they may use nitrous oxide before anesthetizing the tooth. Dr. Skates will then remove any decay and shape the tooth to receive a crown. The crown must be thick enough to withstand chewing, which means that the natural tooth below the crown must be reduced. The crown is cemented into place, and the patient is advised to avoid eating sticky and chewy candy or gums that could pull the crown off. If the crown does come off, be sure to save the crown and call the office immediately to re-cement it.

Composite Fillings >

Restorations are used to replace areas of a decayed tooth. We use a filling material that is tooth colored and mercury-free, called composite resin. We do not use amalgam (silver) fillings.

Procedure: Dr. Skates places a topical gel on the gum area where the injection for the local anesthetic will be done. If the patient is nervous, they may use nitrous oxide before giving the injection. The decayed area of the tooth will be gently removed and replaced with composite resin filling material. The tooth will then be polished and checked for proper occlusion (fit between the upper and lower teeth).

Dental Implants >

This is an option for patients whose tooth structure is beyond repair without a metal post and crown to replace the natural tooth. This procedure is the only one that can help stimulate bone growth while preventing bone loss. Unlike removable dentures, implants are screwed into the jawbone securely. The end result is a healthy and more natural fit for the patient.

To read more about dental implants, please click below:
Colgate: Single Tooth Implants

Tooth Extraction >

If a tooth has been broken or damaged by decay beyond repair Dr. Skates may recommend the tooth needs to be extracted. If you are one of few people that have extra teeth he may suggest it, or are interested in orthodontics. Sometime wisdom teeth need to be extracted before they even erupt - this is common. Dr. Skates may refer you to an Oral Surgeon depending on the position of the tooth (impacted wisdom tooth) and how many roots it has.

Procedure: Dr. Skates places a topical gel on the gum area where the injection for the local anesthetic will be done. If the patient is nervous, they may use nitrous oxide before giving the injection. The tooth is loosened using an instrument called an elevator and extracted.

Cosmetic Teeth Whitening >

With Opalescence BOOST one hour in office whitening treatment you can jump start your whiter smile without a light. We also offer take home gel syringes of a lower percentage here in our office.

Procedure:The appointment is an hour long with 20 minutes of the boost gel placed on the teeth, rinsed and repeated until 60 full minutes has been met in the dental chair.