Millard Hills Dental Health Center/ Nebraska Dental Implants & Prosthetics located at 14202 Y Street, offers both general dentistry services as well as prosthetic dentistry services. Paul J. Sheridan, DDS, the owner and one of five dentists on staff, explained that prosthetic dentistry is the art and science of replacing teeth with either removable or fixed prosthetics.
After nearly a decade of practice at the University of Nebraska Medical Center’s department of oral facial prosthetics, Dr. Sheridan said he was looking for an opportunity to provide both general dental services and prosthetic services to patients. He found that at Millard Hills Dental Health Center/ Nebraska Dental Implants & Prosthetics. ”It is our goal to replace missing teeth and help establish the quality of life that patients enjoyed before the teeth were lost.”
The best way to replace teeth
According to Dr. Sheridan replacing teeth can be done two ways. One, the more conventional method, uses crowns and dentures. The more contemporary method involves placing and restoring dental implants.
“While the loss of teeth can be a minor issue, loosing multiple teeth and tooth pain can cause a person to stop eating correctly and become less healthy.” While dentures, partials and other removable teeth are helpful, generally an increase of chewing function is noted with the help of dental implants,” he said. “Dental implants can help provide the stability and retention that most denture-wearers are looking for and have been missing since their teeth were lost.”
Medicines make an impact
According to Dr. Sheridan, today’s modern medicine may be a factor in the need for prosthetic dentistry. It is very common for patients who are in their 50s, 60s and 70s to take multiple medications that may be detrimental to their teeth, Dr. Sheridan said. “Medications often times cause dry mouth that will in turn cause decay and loss of teeth,” he said.
Medication-induced “xerostomia” is the name given for this cause of tooth loss. Dr. Sheridan said that it can be managed and tooth loss prevented with the proper steps and practices.
Even if you are not taking medications, it’s important to talk to your dentist if you notice a decrease in saliva. Working with your dentist may prevent future tooth damage or loss from xerostomia.
A team approach
Dental implants involve the entire staff of Millard Hills Dental Health Center /Nebraska Dental Implants & Prosthetics. Each patient works with a dental surgeon and a restorative team. “We use oral surgeons and periodontists to provide the surgical placement of the implants and we provide the restorative side by connecting the prosthesis to the anchoring dental implant.”
Once the implant restorative is completed, Dr. Sheridan said it is critical patients establish maintenance procedures the office provides them. “It is imperative that frequent recall appointments( cleanings), and placing a emphasize on keeping your teeth as you grow older will make eating, smiling and maintain a healthy lifestyle attainable,” he said.
Taking care of your teeth
You’ve heard it your whole life: floss, brush, and visit your dentist regularly. However, it bears repeating as you age. A recent WebMD article explained that while teeth are resilient age does affect them. Over time bad habits like diet, grinding or clenching teeth, or lack of proper care may make teeth more vulnerable to decay.
Now is the time to evaluate your dental health care regimen. Here are some simple reminders:
- Avoid sugary foods and carbonated soft drinks.
- Brush twice a day for at least two minutes each time.
- Eat a healthy diet.
- Use antibacterial mouthwash.