- Dental Services
- New Patients
- Meet The Team
With the advancement of new dental technology over the past decade, Fairbanks residents have never had better access to care. Here are just a few of the ways Spruce Roots dental procedures can transform the way you access dental care:
New Cavity Technology
Did you know that some cavities are so microscopic, that they may not even be identifiable during a clinical exam or on an x-ray? Digital cavity recognition allows new dental technology to pinpoint weak enamel before a cavity has become extreme. This also keeps your cost of care down, thanks to more conservative treatment options.
Hard and Soft Tissue Lasers
Utilizing lasers in dentistry has altered the way practices like our Fairbanks office are able to care for our patients. This technology makes complex procedures become less invasive and more comfortable.
For instance, soft tissue lasers can be used to treat problems such as:
• Cold sores and ulcers
• Snoring and sleep apnea
• Periodontal disease (gum disease)
Other types of laser technology can even be used for treating cavities. Drill free fillings are commonly completed with the use of hard tissue lasers, eliminating the need to numb patients during their procedures. Laser fillings also minimize the amount of healthy tooth enamel removed during the procedure.
3D CT imaging technology is now nearly a “routine” service when it comes to complex treatments such as dental implant placement. Computer guided procedures ensure optimal results with little need for more complex treatments like sinus lifts or bone grafting.
Experience the Difference
Our Fairbanks dentist is committed to using oral health innovations that improve your quality and efficiency of care. Find out how new dental technology can improve your smile by calling Spruce Roots Dentistry today!
If you’ve ever needed to replace a missing tooth, you know how challenging it can be to find an option that looks and feels great for years. Even replacement teeth wear out– leaving you wishing that you could have a natural tooth all over again. Fortunately, there’s now an option that’s almost as good as the real thing: dental implants.
Implants use medical-grade titanium in the shape of an artificial tooth root that is placed directly into the jaw. Your body grows more bone around the artificial root, permanently securing it in place for the rest of your life. In fact, well-maintained and healthy implant sites are actually stronger than even the healthiest of real teeth!
Titanium is highly biocompatible, which means the body accepts it as if it were a naturally occurring anatomical structure. It also triggers new bone, which is why implants are able to actually strengthen the jaw as opposed to just sitting inside of it. In fact, titanium is frequently used throughout the medical field for procedures such as joint replacement.
On top of your implants, we’re able to place a number of different restorative options, such as individual porcelain crowns, fixed bridges, or even implant-supported dentures. Spruce Roots’ cosmetic dentist in Fairbanks, AK has a wide number of aesthetic implant restorations available!
Although implants are not “real” teeth, they still need to be cared for as if they were. It’s possible to get variations of gingivitis or gum disease around your implant if the area is not brushed or flossed properly. We recommend using a soft bristled brush as well as gently flossing around the neck of the implant at least twice a day.
If you’re looking to get dental implants in Fairbanks, Spruce Roots has a team of dental partners that you can count on! We can walk you through the implant process step-by-step right here in our Fairbanks office.
Call us today to schedule a consultation, and find out how implants can help you have a healthy smile for life!
It would be a dream come true if you could have a tooth repaired and never need to worry about it again. The sad fact is, dental restorations wear out. Dental implants are the only type of restoration that can repair your smile permanently, and obviously they aren’t the best choice in many cases.
Temperature changes and pressure over the years cause teeth to compress and expand at different rates from the filling material. As a result, a tooth can become stressed after many years of holding a filling. Tiny fissures can develop and allow decay to creep in around the filling, compromising the tooth.
Dental crowns can cause wear on the opposing teeth. Additionally, if a crown has aged significantly, it can fracture on something as simple as your favorite crunchy snack. Particularly prone to chipping, are crowns and fillings on front teeth.
Grinding or clenching your teeth puts a lot of undue stress on your teeth as well. If you’re waking with a sore jaw, please come in for a consultation and let us find a solution to preserve the integrity of your teeth and restorations.
As long as there is some natural tooth structure remaining, that tooth will always be at risk for decay. Dental restorations provide a tight seal, but nothing is as solid as your natural tooth. Obviously, oral hygiene is incredibly important, because the small margin between the filling or crown and your natural tooth is prone to harboring bacteria that can cause cavities.
Unfortunately, cavities can develop at the edges of a crown or filling and grow long before you experience any discomfort. It is challenging to get a complete picture of how far decay has progressed under a filling or crown, even with an x-ray. Replacing older restorations allows you stay on top of any sneaky cavities that may have gotten in over the years, before your tooth degrades further.
The team at Spruce Roots believes that you play an important part in getting the full benefits of your dental restorations. We are passionate about helping you enjoy a beautiful, healthy smile throughout your life. This means using only the latest dental technology and most conservative techniques to keep your smile as natural as possible. If it’s time to replace your fillings or dental crowns, our Fairbanks, AK team of professionals is here to help.
Call Spruce Roots today to find out more about how updating your restorations can maintain your healthy smile for years to come!
A dental implant is an artificial tooth, attached to a metal post that is inserted beneath your gums and into the bone.
Implants are now regarded as the standard of care for tooth replacement. Although daunting in its description, the implant process provides long-lasting results and isn’t as uncomfortable as most patients anticipate.
The team here at Spruce Roots, wants you to have a clear explanation of the entire process from start to finish.
The dental implant itself is a small titanium post with fine threads that fuse to your jaw as it develops new bone around it. Once anchored in place, the forces of natural chewing are easily supported. Most patients are surprised at how simple and quick the process is. They report feeling no pain during the surgery, and very little discomfort during recovery.
In fact, the most common feedback we hear is, “I wish I hadn’t waited so long!”
Planning to place an implant is a very careful process that eliminates any guesswork.
Between the specialist (surgeon) and our office, we use technology including:
… to plan out the optimal position for each implant. This preparation allows the surgery to go as smoothly as possible. It also determines whether you are a candidate for implant therapy to begin with.
You will be referred to a dental specialist within Fairbanks, a Periodontist or Oral Surgeon, to have the implant placed. The specialist will make sure you receive the level of sedation that keeps you comfortable.
For most single “tooth” implants, local anesthetic is sufficient and the whole surgical procedure can take less time than a normal filling or crown!
For the majority of simple, single implants, a small incision is made in the gums at the implant site. The bone is exposed by slight flaps of gum tissue being sectioned out. It isn’t uncomfortable, but patients often feel a slight vibration as the implant is placed into the open socket. Once the sterile implant is seated, the gums are sutured closed to completely cover the implant for a few months or the surgeon places a healing cap over the implant with gum tissue hugging the temporary cap.
The specialist will discuss after-care instructions and any medications that you may need. Discomfort is usually minimal. Most patients return to work the next day.
The next stage is critical. Your bone around the implant will need 3-6 months to heal and securely fuse to the implant, a process known as osseointegration.
Once osseointegration has occurred, Dr. Willis or Dr. Bast can prepare for the permanent restoration. You will return to our office for the removal of the temporary healing cap. A transfer post will be placed and a mold will be taken and sent to our dental laboratory for the fabrication of your custom-fit implant crown. The healing cap will be placed back in the mouth for about 3 weeks. On final delivery, the healing cap is removed for the last time and the permanent crown is finely adjusted to accommodate the new space. Time is taken to get the bite just right.
If the implants are supporting a denture or a partial denture, posts called abutments are placed and the denture or partial is modified to accept the abutments.
Wondering if a dental implant is right for you? Fairbanks residents are encouraged to schedule a consultation to learn more about the many benefits of implant therapy. Call today to book your visit with us and restore your smile!
There’s nothing better than that slippery smooth feeling right after having your teeth professionally cleaned. Wouldn’t you want to do everything you could to keep your teeth looking and feeling amazing between visits?
It may sound odd, but chewing gum can be good for you – the right gum, that is. It’s important to choose a gum that contains Xylitol. Xylitol is a particular type of sweetener that actually prevents plaque bacteria from collecting on your teeth.
You can dramatically reduce the amount of plaque buildup on your teeth by chewing xylitol-sweetened gum a few times throughout the day. We especially recommend chewing a piece after meals or snacks, when you’re away from home and can’t brush. There are even xylitol-sweetened lollipops for younger kids.
Harder is not better. A medium or stiff-bristled brush can actually leave your teeth dirtier than a gentle one. The soft bristles of the right toothbrush are able to flex around the curved contours of your teeth, picking up and brushing away the plaque buildup around the edges. Light pressure and a smooth circular motion is all that’s needed. And set that timer! Two minutes of brushing allows you to thoroughly brush every surface.
You can reduce your risk of tooth decay just by choosing the right beverages. Of course, we’re not suggesting that you completely give up that morning coffee or an evening glass of wine—we wish you would, but we’re realists! But you can tip the scales in your favor by choosing water more often than not.
Drinking water after meals, snacks, or throughout the day can wash away excess bacteria from your mouth and help neutralize the acidity of your saliva. Although it isn’t as effective as brushing and flossing, drinking and rinsing with water will decrease the plaque levels on your teeth.
If you’re going to enjoy a glass of iced tea, soda, or other stain-causing beverage, try drinking it through a straw! This allows the stain particles to bypass the most visible part of your smile, keeping your front teeth whiter, longer.
Most tartar (calculus) buildup starts between the teeth and along the gum line. Plaque will begin to calcify if you aren’t flossing at least once a day. This leaves a hard yellow or brown buildup over your tooth that can only be removed by your dental hygienist. Wrap your floss tightly around your tooth and slide up and down below the gum lines several times. If you have any irritation or mild bleeding, it could signal that you are developing gingivitis. It should go away within 10-14 days of daily flossing.
Between Dr. Bast and Dr. Willis and the rest of the Spruce Roots Family staff, we are committed to helping you keep your smile healthy. When you visit our dental office, we’ll equip you with the knowledge you need to fight off plaque, tartar and stains between your check-ups.
If you’re ready to have the best dental care of your life, call Spruce Roots Family Dentistry to schedule your consultation today!
If you find yourself in the dental chair discussing a tooth that needs to be repaired, then you might encounter a tough decision about your dental care: does the tooth need a filling or a crown? Whether the tooth is cracked or it has a big cavity, it is important that you are proactive with your dental treatment to repair the tooth and prevent future dental problems.
Before you make the decision to have a crown or a filling, you should discuss the two treatments with your cosmetic dentist. A dental filling is a repair that can be completed within the boundaries of the tooth, surrounded by as much of the natural tooth structure as possible.
But, if a large section of the tooth is missing, then it might be better to use a dental crown instead. Placing a crown on the tooth can be beneficial to stop the cycle of tooth decay and protect the natural tooth structure that remains.
Your dentist can make a recommendation based on your individual situation, to help you choose the best treatment for your tooth. These are some of the situations that might merit the application of a crown instead of basic dental fillings:
In situations where a large portion of the tooth has been broken or destroyed, there are limitations in the way a filling can be used to repair the tooth. Sometimes, patients choose to have a filling when a crown is needed, because the filling is a cheaper option. But, large fillings might cause bigger dental problems in the future. So it is best to choose the most effective treatment, instead of making your decision based on price alone.
Are you looking for an experienced cosmetic dentist? Contact Spruce Roots Dentistry in Fairbanks, Alaska to schedule an appointment. We always love to hear from you, and invite you to contact us any time if you have dental questions: (907) 479-3326
When it comes to replacing missing teeth, you have options. Each of these has different advantages over other types of treatment.
How can you be sure which one is right for you?
When comparing dental implants to fixed dental bridges to removable dentures – the options may seem overwhelming.
Here’s what you need to know:
Dental implants last longer than any other type of tooth replacement option in restorative dentistry. In fact, when implants are well cared for they can last a lifetime. A dental implant can be used to support a single dental crown, dental bridge, or even in some cases a denture.
Although a dental implant requires a slightly larger initial investment, the restorative treatment is much more cost effective over time. This is due to the fact that the prosthetic implant root will most likely last forever. A dentist can restore implants so that they look, feel, and function as much like a natural tooth as possible.
Dentures and partial dentures are removable prostheses that can replace several or all of your teeth at once. They are typically regarded as the most affordable tooth replacement option in restorative dentistry. Our Spruce Roots Family Dentistry team creates each denture of custom fitted acrylic with natural, aesthetic teeth.
Of course, dentures are much larger and “bulkier” than other types of tooth replacements. Although they are also initially more affordable, dentures require ongoing maintenance, repairs, and future replacements. As your mouth changes shape due to ongoing bone loss, the denture may lose the stability of its custom fit.
A dental bridge is one of the most traditional forms of tooth replacement, used when only one or two teeth are involved. The procedure uses false dental crowns that are bonded between functional crowns, to “bridge” the open space where a tooth is missing.
Dental bridges can also be supported by implants to replace up to 3 to 5 teeth at one time. All bridges are fixed permanently into the mouth, providing you with added stability over options like removable dentures or partials.
With regular maintenance, a dental bridge will usually last several years. However, just like a dental crown, bridges will eventually need to be replaced as they begin to wear or leak.
At Spruce Roots Family Dentistry, our Fairbanks dentists can assist you in finding the right tooth replacement option for you. Whatever your story is, our dental office can help. New patients are always welcome. Call us today to schedule a consultation!
Check here for periodic updates from our office! Click here to view our previous newsletters.