Posts for category: Dental Procedures

By Wayne Cook, D.D.S.
June 22, 2020
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: dental implants  

Having missing teeth may hinder you from flashing your best smile. Thankfully, this issue could easily be resolved by getting dental implants. Dr. Wayne Cook, your Marion family dentist here at Wayne Cook DDS commonly uses dental implants for restoring smiles while also provide a variety of other benefits to our patients.

What are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are frames that are surgically placed on your jawbone under the gum line. Essentially, they serve as replacement tooth roots. They likewise offer a sturdy base for replacement teeth, known as dental crowns, which are designed to appear like your natural teeth.

What Benefits Do Implants Offer?

If you take good care of your dental implants, they can provide you with lifelong benefits such as:

  • Enhanced comfort: They essentially become a part of you over time, therefore, they will feel just like your natural teeth.
  • Improvement in your speech: Since dental implants are placed securely into your jawbone, they enable you to talk without them slipping off, unlike other tooth replacement options.
  • Eat with ease: Eating or chewing with missing teeth may feel unusual. Getting dental implants can eliminate that discomfort.
  • Easier and better oral health: Maintaining your oral hygiene can be a hassle if some of your teeth are lost but dental implants enable you to go about your oral care routine with ease. Furthermore, tooth loss could also instigate certain oral complications, as your tooth roots could be left exposed to harmful bacteria.
  • Prevention of bone loss: Missing teeth could likewise contribute to the loss of bone mass in the jaw, as it requires stimulation from your teeth. Dental implants are the only tooth replacement option that restores jawbone stimulation.
  • Longevity and durability: Dental implants can last you many years due to their durability. And if you take good care of them, they could last even longer.
  • Refined appearance and self-confidence. Dental implants boost your confidence, as it can bring back the quality of your smile and function of your mouth.

Are Dental Implants Right for You?

If you are healthy enough for oral surgery or a routine dental extraction, you can qualify for dental implants. You must have enough bone and healthy gums to support the implant. Otherwise, your Marion Family Dentist may need to perform extra treatments to make your mouth suitable for dental implants.

For More Questions or Information About Dental Implants, Speak to Us

Call (870) 739-8799 to book an appointment with your family dentist here at Wayne Cook DDS in Marion, AR, Dr. Wayne Cook.

MileyCyrussLittleSecretStraighteningHerSmileWithLingualBraces

Miley Cyrus's rise to fame began when she was cast in the Disney series Hannah Montana. She played the title character, Hannah Montana, a famous singing star hiding her true identity, ordinary girl, Miley Stewart. In her real life at the time, Miley Cyrus had her own little secret—she was undergoing orthodontic treatment to straighten her smile.

Like many teenagers (as well as many adults), Cyrus's dental bite wasn't in proper alignment. She could have gone the traditional way by straightening her smile with braces fixed to the front of her teeth. It's an effective treatment, but the metallic hardware can overwhelm a person's appearance.

With her various roles in the public spotlight, Cyrus and her family wanted an effective but out-of-sight method for moving her teeth. They chose a relatively new one called lingual braces. Unlike traditional braces, the hardware for lingual braces is fixed on the back of the teeth (or the tongue side, hence the term “lingual”).

Lingual braces can correct any bite problem labial (“lip”) braces can, just through different mechanics of movement. Its main appeal is that the hardware is hidden behind the teeth, so only you and your orthodontist need know you're wearing braces.

There is also less risk of damage to the mouth or the braces themselves if you're in a sport or profession where you're at high risk for facial blows. And unlike patients with traditional braces, you'll have an unobstructed view of your progress over the course of treatment.

Lingual braces do tend to cost more than traditional braces. Some patients also have difficulty at first with speaking and tongue comfort, though most grow accustomed to the braces within a couple of weeks. Because lingual braces are relatively new, there's been a limited number of orthodontists offering it.

But lingual braces are just one of the ways to straighten teeth. Modern dentistry offers several ways to give you your dream smile. If you have dental problems or would like to improve the look of your smile, please contact us or schedule a consultation, and we can discuss your options. To learn more, read the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Lingual Braces” and “The Magic of Orthodontics.”

By Wayne Cook, D.D.S.
May 23, 2020
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: tooth decay  
AreLaserstheFutureforTreatingAdvancedToothDecay

Advanced tooth decay is a serious dental problem that can threaten an affected tooth's survival. But for decades now dentists have reliably used root canal treatment to better a decayed tooth's odds. This routine procedure performed with dental drill and special hand tools removes infected tissue inside a tooth and replaces the voids with a filling to prevent future infection.

But now there's a new way to perform a root canal—with a surgical laser. Lasers, amplified and focused light beams, aren't new to healthcare—they're an integral feature of many routine medical treatments and surgeries. But their use is relatively new to dentistry, and to endodontics (treating the interior of teeth) in particular.

Lasers can be used in root canal treatment to perform a number of tasks. They can remove diseased tissue and other debris from the innermost tooth pulp. They can be used to clean and shape root canal walls in preparation for filling. And they can also be used to soften and mold the filling material to fit more precisely within a tooth's particular root canal network.

Although laser-assisted root canal therapy isn't yet widespread, laser's limited use to date has given us a fair picture of both their advantages and disadvantages. As with other medical laser applications, lasers are very precise in removing diseased tissue without too much disruption of healthy tissue. There's less need for anesthesia than with dental drills, and lasers are a lot less noisy and jarring. Patients by and large experience less bleeding, as well as less discomfort or infection afterward.

But because laser light can only travel in a straight line, they're difficult to use in many tightly curved root canals. In these cases, the traditional methods are better suited, although a laser can be used in conjunction with other tasks. Temperature with lasers must also be carefully managed lest the high heat that's often generated damages natural tissues.

Although lasers won't be replacing traditional treatment methods for decayed teeth in the foreseeable future, there's hope they'll become more commonplace as technology and techniques continue to advance. Lasers can only improve what already is an effective means of saving teeth.

If you would like more information on treatments for advanced tooth decay, 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 “Laser-Assisted Root Canal Treatment.”

By Wayne Cook, D.D.S.
April 13, 2020
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: porcelain veneers  
Ultra-ThinVeneersMightHelpYouAvoidEnamelRemoval

Dental veneers—thin, life-like layers of porcelain bonded to teeth—can turn a so-so smile into a beautiful one. But most veneers have a distinct drawback: To make them look as natural as possible, the teeth they're bonded with must have some of their surface enamel removed.

Even though they're 1 millimeter or less in thickness, veneers on an unprepared tooth can look bulky. Removing some of the surface enamel remedies this, but doing so permanently alters the tooth. The tooth will need a veneer or some other protective restoration from then on.

Now, though, there's an alternative veneer available for many dental patients. Known as No-Prep or Minimal-Prep, these new veneers are often as thin as a contact lens.

These new types of veneers can often be placed directly on the teeth just above the gum line without any enamel removal and look natural. At the most, the enamel beneath them may need reshaping with an abrasive tool. And, unlike traditional veneers with tooth alteration, these low-prep veneers can often be applied without anesthesia, and in as few as two appointments.

No- or Minimal-Preps are better suited for certain kinds of patients: those with small teeth or teeth that appear small due to larger mouth features; worn teeth from aging or teeth grinding or with small gaps; narrow smiles where the side teeth aren't as visible; and teeth that are slightly misshapen or with minor staining.

On the other hand, patients with oversized teeth or front teeth that jut forward may still encounter problems with an unnatural, bulky appearance even with ultra-thin veneers. The latter situation can often be corrected with orthodontic treatment first to realign the teeth to their proper positions. Once the bite is corrected, no-prep veneers may then become a viable option.

If you'd like to consider these minimal preparation veneers, see your dentist for an examination. The exam results will help determine what type of veneer solution is right for you. And whether you go with traditional or No-Prep veneers, the change in your smile can be amazing.

If you would like more information on porcelain veneers without enamel removal, 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 “No-Prep Porcelain Veneers.”

By Wayne Cook, D.D.S.
April 08, 2020
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: braces  

Properly aligned teeth are the key to a healthy, attractive smile. Braces, offered by your Marion, AR, dentist, Dr. Wayne Cook, can help you take advantage of the important oral and general health benefits orthodontic treatment provides.

What Braces from our Marion Office Can Do for Your Smile

Misaligned teeth aren't just unattractive but can interfere with your biting and speaking ability and may even increase your risk of developing certain diseases and conditions. Improving the alignment of your teeth can prevent these issues:

  • Poor Speech: Gaps between teeth or bite problems can affect your ability to speak clearly or pronounce certain sounds. Orthodontic treatment in Wayne corrects these problems and helps you improve your speech.
  • Difficulty Biting and Chewing: Your upper and lower teeth are designed to meet perfectly when you bite and chew. If they don't fit together properly, you may find it difficult to chew foods thoroughly. Your stomach has to work harder to digest food that hasn't been broken down completely by chewing. As a result, you may experience upset stomachs and other gastrointestinal issues.
  • Cavities: When your teeth are crooked and overlap, it may not be easy to completely remove plaque. The longer the clear, sticky substance remains on your teeth, the greater the chance that a cavity will form. Braces straighten your teeth, reducing your cavity risk.
  • Gum Disease: Plaque eventually turns into tartar, a hard substance that irritates the gums and can be a factor in gum disease. If you have gum disease, bacteria from the infection can travel to other parts of your body via your bloodstream, increasing your risk of heart disease, stroke, and other serious health conditions. Straightening your teeth can help you avoid these health issues.
  • Breathing Issues in Children: A narrow palate (roof of the mouth) can make it more difficult for your child to breathe. Palate issues may cause sleep apnea, change your child's facial characteristics or make clear speech more difficult. Wearing a palatal expander, an orthodontic device that gradually expands the palate, can be very helpful.

Could braces help you improve your smile? Call your dentist in Marion, AR, Dr. Cook, at (870) 739-8799 to schedule an appointment.



Marion, AR Family Dentist
Wayne Cook, D.D.S.
303 Bancario Rd.Suite 7
Marion, AR 72364
870-739-8799
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