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Services : Preventative Care & Oral Medicine

We offer a variety of dental services ranging from basic bi-annual check-ups to full dental implants.
Our caring staff is here to ensure your experience is positive. We even offer sedation dentistry for those who have anxiety over dental procedures.

Dental Exams & Cleanings

Patients often wait until they experience a problem to contact a dentist, but with proper preventative care and early detection these dental problems can be minimized and sometimes avoided altogether. Cleanings (usually two to four times each year) are vital to optimal oral health and development. Home-based brushing and flossing help to remove plaque but it cannot remove plaque that has hardened into calculus or tarter. If left untreated, tarter build up can cause a variety of problems, such as decay, gum disease, and infection.

 

Our team's commitment to prevention includes extensive and ongoing training and continuing education for our hygienists so we can provide you with the latest and best treatment methods available. At your routine visit you will receive a comprehensive exam and cleaning. Our team will check your teeth for cavities, monitor your gum condition, screen you for oral cancer, take diagnostic x-rays and photographs, scale and polish your teeth, provide fluoride treatment, and review educational material and techniques for the best oral hygiene practices at home.


Ronald E. Massie, D.D.S., M.A.G.D.

24 North Shore Drive
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

573-365-0220

 

First Practice Visits & Routine Visits for Children

At Premier Dental we try to integrate children into the practice as smoothly as possible with “safe, or practice visits” during which the parents are often excused and we (usually Haley or Suzanne) spend one-on-one time with the child, some as young as one year old, to prepare them for their next, real visit.  Before a child’s first visit it is important that parents not share too much about their previous “bad” dental experiences as to not frighten the child.


One of the biggest myths we face is that cavities in baby/deciduous teeth are no big deal because the tooth will just fall out anyway, but in fact, those twenty baby teeth are an important part of your child’s overall health and infections in baby teeth can actually damage permanent teeth as well.  Dental health is just as important for infants and young children as it is for adults.  Integration, leading to routine check-ups for your child, is essential because if we see a child every six months and don’t have to do anything difficult, they are a lot more willing to come back and see us than when we see a child for the first time and have to fill a cavity or remove a tooth.


Ronald E. Massie, D.D.S., M.A.G.D.
24 North Shore Drive
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

573-365-0220

 

Toothprints®

Toothprints® offers parents an economical and reliable means of recovery identification in the event that their children become missing or abducted.  Developed by a pediatric dentist, the thermoplastic wafer records the size and shape of a young patient’s teeth.  Similar to fingerprints, dental imprints are exclusive to every person so bite impressions provide a very accurate method of identification.  A Toothprints® impression also captures saliva, which is a great source of scent, making Toothprints® effective for scent-dog tracking.  Proteins in the saliva also remain on the wafer and can be used to conduct a successful DNA test.  Parents keep the Toothprints® record at home for confidentiality and quick access.

Ronald E. Massie, D.D.S., M.A.G.D.
24 North Shore Drive
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

573-365-0220

 

Periodontal Gum Therapy

When we think of common diseases in the United States heart disease, stroke, and cancer tend to come to mind, but actually, gum disease (also known as periodontal disease) is the single most prevalent disease in America, affecting about 80% of the population.  That’s three out of four people! 


Gum disease is an infection of the gums and bone that surround and support the teeth.  It usually begins when a person is young and progresses with age.  It’s main cause is bacterial plaque that hardens into tarter (also called calculus), but other risk factors include alcohol and/or tobacco use, genetics, stress level, medications, hormone changes, diabetes,  systemic diseases, clenching and grinding teeth, poor nutrition, and obesity.


When tartar builds up below the gum line it irritates those soft tissues and infection can set in and spread quickly.  Symptoms, such as red, tender, swollen gums and bleeding when brushing, and constant bad breath, are very mild (gingivitis) and tend to go unnoticed in the early stages.  However, as the disease gets worse (periodontitis) and gums recede, pockets of bacteria form and permanently destroy gum and bone tissue, sometimes causing patients to lose teeth.  In fact, gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults.


Recently, research has linked gum disease to an increased risk for major overall health problems, including stroke, heart disease, respiratory problems, osteoporosis, diabetes complications, low birth weight, dementia, and more.


We are able to detect early warning signs of gum disease during your routine dental checkups. If caught early enough, simple prevention techniques such as changing the way you brush, flossing more often, or changing your home-care products may be enough to fight progression.


Once gum disease sets in, we can often treat it with non-surgical therapy including scaling to remove tarter from teeth, root planning to reduce inflammation below the gum line, and antibiotic therapy to fight infection.  In advanced cases, we are able to provide surgical treatment as well.

Ronald E. Massie, D.D.S., M.A.G.D.
24 North Shore Drive
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

573-365-0220

 

 

Total Joint Surgery Clearance & Post-Placement Care

People who are scheduled for total joint replacement are required to get a dental clearance prior to their surgery because any untreated dental infection in their teeth or gums can cause bacteria to migrate to the susceptible, newly-placed artificial joint, disrupting the healing process and compromising the outcome of the operation.

It is usually recommended that the person scheduled to undergo joint replacement therapy visit their dentist at least two months prior to surgery to receive a comprehensive dental exam, cleaning, and a full mouth series of x-rays, which will be used to determine the overall health of the person’s mouth.  Conditions that must be treated for a person to receive dental clearance for total joint replacement include cavities, gum disease/infection, abscessed teeth, fractured teeth or fillings, and loose teeth.  Treating these conditions will greatly improve the chances of a successful surgery.

Major cosmetic dental treatment, such as fixed bridgework and dental implants, should be postponed several months after the surgery has been completed to give the artificial joint plenty of time to heal.  To prevent future infections, antibiotics are routinely given prior to dental treatment after joint replacement.  Good oral hygiene, regular dental examinations, and cleanings at least twice a year are essential to maintain optimal dental health and prevent potential problems before and after artificial joint placement.

 

Ronald E. Massie, D.D.S., M.A.G.D.
24 North Shore Drive
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

573-365-0220

 

 

CariFree® Cavity Risk Assessment

According to new research on cavities and what causes them, we know that everyone is at risk of developing tooth decay at some time in their life.  Caries (cavities) risk assessment is a diagnostic means used to detect problems before permanent damage occurs.  Basically, it is an evaluation of the balance between your risk factors for the disease that causes cavities and the protective factors keeping your mouth healthy.  Based on this assessment, your dental team can determine your probability of developing new cavities in the next year and prescribe the appropriate treatment.


There are five main treatment agents for managing the disease that causes cavities and each CariFree® product is made to supply the needed agents, according to each individual patient’s caries risk.  The higher the patient’s risk, the higher the recommended level of exposure to the five main treatment agents.

 

Ronald E. Massie, D.D.S., M.A.G.D.
24 North Shore Drive
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

573-365-0220

 

 

Preventative Sealants

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends sealants as an effective method for cavity prevention.  Sealants are placed in the hard-to-clean pits and grooves of teeth to help prevent decay.  It requires no numbing and only takes a few minutes to seal each tooth.  This fast, painless procedure is one of the “most cost-effective means of preventing cavities” with minimum intervention.

Here at Premier Dental, we use Fuji TRIAGE sealant, the only surface protectant with antimicrobial properties.  Upon application, it forms a semi-permeable skin that, along with its high fluoride levels, helps keep acid attack and bacteria at bay while allowing calcium and phosphate ions to pass through to strengthen the tooth.

 

Ronald E. Massie, D.D.S., M.A.G.D.
24 North Shore Drive
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

573-365-0220

 

 

 

VELscope Vx Cancer Screenings

Our dental office is proud to provide the most advance standard of care available.  The VELscope® Vx is the most powerful tool available for assisting in the discovery of oral abnormalities, including cancer.  Its blue light stimulates natural fluorescence in the soft tissue of your mouth, which allows dental professionals to see disease not visible with the naked eye. The VELscope® Vx exam is quick, painless and effective.  It’s the five minute exam that could save your life!

Interested in learning more? Contact us and we'll be happy to talk with you.

 

Ronald E. Massie, D.D.S., M.A.G.D.
24 North Shore Drive
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

573-365-0220

 

 

Flouride Treatments

Fluoride is the most effective means available to help prevent tooth decay because it actually has the ability to strengthen enamel, the hardest material found in nature.  Enamel is made from a substance called calcium hydroxyapatite.  When topical fluoride is applied to the outer surface of your teeth, it is integrated into your enamel and that substance becomes calcium fluorapatite, which is much more resistant to decay.  We recommend that you have a professional application of fluoride at least twice a year during your routine check-ups.

 

Ronald E. Massie, D.D.S., M.A.G.D.
24 North Shore Drive
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

573-365-0220

 

 

 

Salivary Diagnostic Testing through Oral DNA Labs

OralDNA® Labs is a laboratory company that offers 2 diagnostic tests that provide us with valuable information for the assessment and treatment of your condition.  The MyPerioPath® test identifies and measures which bacteria are triggering your periodontal disease, and thus tells us how to treat it more effectively.  The MyPerioID® PST® test can tell if you have specific changes in your DNA.  These changes might mean you are at a greater risk of more serious gum tissue infections and help us determine your susceptibility and come up with a treatment plan that’s just for you.

Listed below are some of the reasons to consider using OralDNA’s tests:

  • Are you a smoker?
  • Do you have bad breath?
  • Have you ever had red or swollen gums?
  • Do your gums bleed when you brush or floss?
  • Have you lost teeth or are your teeth loose?
  • Is there a family history of heart disease?
  • Do you have or does a family member have diabetes?
  • Have you ever been treated for gingivitis or a periodontal infection?
  • Are you considering cosmetic or complex restorative dentistry, such as veneers or implants?

Reasons that these tests would be recommended to you are:

  • Clinical signs of infection are present, such as inflamed gum tissue (red, swollen or bleeding gums).
  • Visible signs of periodontitis are evident, such as bone loss around teeth and/or deep periodontal pockets.
  • You have a family history of periodontal disease.
  • Confirmation of your oral health state is needed prior to surgery.
  • You have other medical conditions that make you more susceptible to periodontal infections.
  • For the assessment of your periodontal health and genetic risk to periodontal infections.

If you are sexually active and/or have a family history of oral cancer, you may also want to consider The OraRisk HPV Test to determine if an oral HPV infection is present and if so, what type.  When oral HPV causes an infection, there are generally three possible outcomes:

  • It may “clear” without causing cell changes (usually occurs within the first 12 months).
  • It may linger for long periods of time without any clinical signs or changes.
  • It may progress and alter cells, leading to malignant changes and cancer of the mouth, tongue, tonsils or throat.

Remember: Early detection and identification of the presence or absence of high-risk oral HPV types is good medicine.  While not all HPV infections cause cancer, oral HPV infections, especially those that are high-risk types, are cause for concern and should be monitored closely.

Each of these tests are performed using a saliva sample.  It is easy and fast to collect.  You will simply swish a sterile saline solution in your mouth and spit it into a tube.  We will then send the sample to the lab, where the test is performed.  We will receive the results in about a week and contact you accordingly.

Interested in learning more? Contact us and we'll be happy to talk with you.

 

Ronald E. Massie, D.D.S., M.A.G.D.
24 North Shore Drive
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

573-365-0220

 

 

 

Diabetic Testing

In the July 2011 issue of the Journal of Dental Research, the article titled Identification of the Unrecognized Diabetes and Pre-Diabetes in a Dental Setting stated that researchers at the Columbia University College of Dental Medicine found that dental visits present a great opportunity for dentists to identify people with diabetes or pre-diabetes who are unaware of their condition.  Conducting the screening, which consists of a simple finger prick, in periodontal patients would likely identify many people with pre-diabetes and/or diabetes because of the high correlation between gum disease and diabetes.

 

Ronald E. Massie, D.D.S., M.A.G.D.
24 North Shore Drive
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

573-365-0220

 

 

Expectant Mothers

Several recent research studies have shown that oral health can make a difference in pregnancy. Particularly, P. gingivalis, the bacteria that causes gingivitis and periodontitis/gum disease can cause difficulty conceiving and/or maintaining a healthy, full-term pregnancy.  Potential problems linked to these oral infections are low birth weight, premature labor, and preeclampsia.  Visit your dentist several times while you are pregnant to have a dental examination and your teeth cleaned.  Also, make sure you brush your teeth twice a day and floss at least once a day. 

“Brush for two, for baby and you!”  

 

Ronald E. Massie, D.D.S., M.A.G.D.
24 North Shore Drive
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

573-365-0220