Forensic Dentists: The Unsung Heroes of Dentistry

forensic dentistry RenoLet’s start with a disclaimer: at The Reno Dentist we are fully committed to delivering the highest quality of general and cosmetic dentistry services to living patients. In today’s post, however we will veer a bit off the beaten path, so to speak, and share some insight into an important dental specialty; forensic dentistry. The official term for the use of dentistry in criminal cases and post mortem identification is forensic odontology. These professionals are rarely recognized but play a fundamental role in crime and disaster investigations.

Dental X-rays, dentures, and bite marks are all used to provide clues about the victim’s identity and/or the manner of death. A person’s teeth are as singular as fingerprints and can often sustain forces such as fire, explosions, submersion in water, and natural decay without being destroyed.

Identifying One Victim

Identifying a victim through dental records is aided immensely when authorities have narrowed down a group of suspected victims to just a few people (or, ideally, just one) and can consult the dentists who had treated them. When the identity is totally unknown, a forensic dentist investigates other databases such as those kept by the armed forces and prisons. “Dental identifications are so much quicker and so much less expensive than DNA,” says Dr. Mark Bernstein, dentist and forensic dental consultant.

Identifying Hundreds of Victims

While identifying one victim of a homicide or accident can be relatively straightforward, natural disasters, plane crashes, and other large-scale tragedies are exponentially more involved.

According to Dr. Jeffrey Burkes, chief forensic dental consultant for the 9/11 attacks, over 140 dentists toiled to identify the fragments of remains that were recovered from the scene of the terrorist attacks. The identification effort was an extremely painstaking and complicated process. First, the dentists were assigned to one of four teams. The Go Team gathered evidence from the scene, the Antemortem Team analyzed existing dental records of suspected victims, the Postmortem Team X-rayed the retrieved dental evidence, and the Comparison Team compared the X-rays of the remains of unknown individuals to the records of missing people deemed to have been at the scene. “Dentistry fulfills one of its most important social, moral, and professional obligations by applying its unique knowledge and expertise to the task of identifying countless persons who are tragic victims of fires, catastrophes, disasters, and homicides,” says Burkes.

If you are looking for quality dental care in the Spanish Springs, Virginia City, or Carson City areas, we hope you’ll give The Reno Dentist a call at 775-322-5016 to schedule a consultation.  We offer a wide variety of dental services such as root canals, wisdom teeth extractions, dentures, cleanings and prepless veneers. Call us today!

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503

 


Reno Wants Silver Screen Smiles

Sparks Wants Silver Screen Smiles

With the constant media coverage of celebrities, many Reno dental patients are interested in having a smile like the stars. With an experienced dentist and the right smile makeover procedures, anyone can have a beautiful smile in Reno they want to show off.

Many smile makeovers now include teeth whitening services. There are a variety of ways this can be done. Most Spanish Springs, Virginia City, and Carson City drugstores sell over-the-counter whitening strips and gels. Our dentist can recommend an effective one treatment, or we can offer you an in-office bleaching to give you a beautiful smile in Reno. This is a quick way to see whiter teeth in less than an hour.

For missing teeth, most Sparks cosmetic dentists will recommend a dental implant. Because a dental implant is anchored into the jawbone, it looks and feels just like a natural tooth. A dental implant prevents jawbone recession and the shifting of adjacent teeth.

Porcelain veneers are especially popular in the Sparks area. They cover the front of the teeth and are custom-made for each individual patient. These are useful for Reno patients who have broken or chipped teeth, stained teeth, or gaps between teeth that they would like to hide. Enamel shaping, bonding, braces, and gum contouring are other successful treatments that can be used to help your teeth look their best.

If you are looking for quality dental care in the Spanish Springs, Virginia City, or Carson City area, we hope you’ll give The Reno Dentist a call at 775-322-5016 to schedule a consultation.  At our practice, we offer a wide variety of dental services such as root canals, wisdom teeth extraction, dentures, and prepless veneers. We look forward to hearing from you.

 

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503


How is Snoring Different from Sleep Apnea in Reno?

sleep apnea in Reno

It’s estimated that 50% of people snore at some point during their life. Sleep apnea is a more serious, but also common sleep disorder. Snoring and sleep apnea are related. Many men and women who snore also have sleep apnea in Reno, but there are important differences.

Why is Sleep Apnea in Reno So Dangerous?

Snoring alone doesn’t cause breathing to stop. People who suffer from sleep apnea in Reno actually stop breathing. This can happen many times during the night. When the brain is deprived of oxygen—not surprisingly—serious problems can occur. Even death. People who suffer from sleep apnea are at risk for heart problems including high blood pressure, heart attacks, and strokes. They are also at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. One of the most common problems is daytime fatigue. This can be debilitating. Untreated sleep apnea lowers the quality of life. The health consequences are not limited to the person with the condition. Their bed partner is also deprived of restorative sleep and, as such, is at risk of health complications.

Are Your Health Issues a Result of Sleep Apnea?

If you suffer from daytime sleepiness, or your partner says you stop breathing temporarily during sleep, see your doctor ASAP. If you want to start out with a specialist, ask your primary doctor for a recommendation. In the U.S., the American Board of Sleep Medicine certifies physicians who treat sleep disorders. Your doctor will diagnose whether you have sleep apnea and which of the three types you have. This may require a visit to a sleep disorder clinic.  If your physician diagnoses your condition as Obstructive Sleep Apnea, don’t assume that there is only one treatment. Sleep apnea in Reno can be treated with an oral appliance, continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), or surgery. If your physician believes you are a candidate for a dental appliance, consult a dentist who specializes in treatment for sleep disorders. At The Reno Dentist, we treat patients with Sleep Apnea in Reno, so feel free to give us a call and ask us any questions. We also offer services such as laser dentistry, implants, and root canals.

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503


How Does Pregnancy Impact Oral Health in Reno

Pregnancy And Oral Health In Reno

In today’s The Reno Dentist blog, we will discuss how pregnancy impacts your oral health in Reno. At the Reno Dentist, we want all expectant Nevada mothers to realize the importance of good oral hygiene during pregnancy. Because of the changes going on in a pregnant woman’s body, there are potential dental health issues that may arise.

The Risk to Oral Health in Reno

Many Reno women experience morning sickness accompanied with vomiting. The gastric acid increases the acidity in the mouth which can easily lead to enamel loss and tooth decay. Heightened levels of progesterone and estrogen may relax the ligaments that support the teeth causing them to loosen. Most Reno residents have experienced gingivitis, but during pregnancy, the hormonal changes increase your risk for gingivitis. Without proper dental care, gingivitis can lead to gum disease.

What Can You Do?

If you are pregnant, our at The Reno Dentist recommends using a soft-bristled toothbrush for daily brushing. Floss carefully and rinse your mouth with a fluoride wash. If you experience morning sickness, clean your mouth with a baking soda and water mixture to improve oral health in Reno. If you are planning to become pregnant, we recommend that you have a cleaning and exam prior to your pregnancy. If you need any dental procedures, it is a good idea to get them done as soon as possible. If you experience any dental problems during your pregnancy, please call and schedule an appointment at 775-322-5016. Untreated dental disease can affect your overall health. At The Reno Dentist we not only offer excellent dental care to our pregnant patients, but we also provide quality preventative care and root canals for the entire family. Our Reno patients can expect professional cosmetic dentistry, dental implants, and Invisalign clear braces.

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503


Dental Health in Reno: Which Type of Toothbrush is Best?

Toothbrush Wars in Sparks Oral Health in Reno dental health in reno

It may surprise you to know that some men and women have very strong opinions about which type of toothbrush is the best. Is manual or electric? Is there really one that is clearly better? Most dentists will tell you that all toothbrushes, when used thoroughly, are effective at removing plaque. Choosing which kind you prefer is really up to you. Today, we want to give you some extra information about toothbrushes to help you select which kind is right for your dental health in Reno.

Does It Save You Money?

You need to consider cost and convenience. Some people argue that even though electric toothbrushes are more pricey, you’ll save on dental bills. However, there are no definitive studies to back up this claim. Manual toothbrushes are easy to find, whereas not all drugstores carry all types of electric toothbrushes. This can be problematic when buying replacement heads. People who travel may find that a smaller, manual toothbrush is easier to pack and batteries are not needed.

Impact on Dental Health in Reno

The pressure you put on your gums with either type of toothbrush is essential. Some people say that it’s difficult to know how much pressure they use with electric toothbrushes, while others say that because of the quick electrical movements, they tend to be more gentle on their gums than when they use manual brushes. You may want to try them both to establish your brushing style. Then you can discuss how it affects dental health in Reno with your dentist.

Schedule an Appointment

Special consideration should be taken for people with arthritis. Most dentists guide their elderly and arthritic patients to use electric toothbrushes when their manual dexterity is diminished. As for children, once they are old enough, an electric toothbrush may be preferable, but safety should always be the first concern of parents. Whichever type of toothbrush you choose, make sure you get soft bristles and replace it every three to four months. Don’t forget, we also offer services such as dental implants, teeth whitening, and laser dentistry.

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503


The Future of Tooth Decay in Reno

The Future Of Tooth Decay In Reno

Dental patients in the Sparks area may wonder what would happen if they didn’t seek quality dental care on a regular basis. The answer isn’t pretty. A common result of untreated cavities are abscesses and tooth decay in Reno. A tooth abscess is an infection near the root of the tooth or between the gum and the tooth. This collection of pus can be very uncomfortable, either causing a shooting pain or a dull throbbing pain. You may also experience bad breath, fever, swollen neck glands, and feelings of general discomfort associated with the infection.

Avoiding Abscesses and Tooth Decay in Reno

Tooth abscesses can also be caused by a chip or a crack in the tooth that allows bacteria to enter. To avoid unpleasant dental problems like abscesses or tooth decay in Reno, have regular visits with your dentist. Also, don’t forget to brush after every meal. With daily brushing and flossing and regular check-ups and cleanings, you can keep your mouth in peak health. Make sure to include flossing once a day to get in those hard to reach places. For questions about which toothpaste to use or what kind of floss you should buy, ask our dental team during your consultation at The Reno Dentist.

Schedule an Appointment

If you are looking for quality dental care in the Reno area, come visit us here at The Reno Dentist. Dr. Shane Sykes has been a dentist in Reno since 2011. We can also answer any questions you have about smile makeover procedures such as dental crowns, veneers, teeth whitening,  dentures, porcelain veneers, and dental implants. We also offer general dentistry treatments such as root canals, wisdom teeth extraction, dental bonding, gum countouring. Call 775-322-5016 to schedule an appointment! We look forwarding to meeting you.

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503


Treat Your Beautiful Smile in Reno to a Healthy Diet

experienced family dentist Reno Beautiful Smile in Reno

Proper nutrition can benefit you in a number of ways such as increased energy, improved immunity, glowing skin, mental clarity, and a lower risk of heart disease and stroke. How often, however, do you consider how your diet impacts your beautiful smile in Reno?

Your diet can impact your risk of cavities, enamel health, and gum condition. Healthy foods provide an environment that can prevent inflammation and infection. Vegetables, fruits, legumes, and nuts are the ideal choices for oral health. Calcium-fortified beverages, milk, and other dairy products provide vitamins, minerals, and calcium that helps with keeping teeth, bones, and gums healthy. Eating crispy fruits and vegetables, such as apples and celery, will help clean your teeth and gums, which will, in turn, improve your beautiful smile in Reno.

A healthy diet contains all the vital vitamins and minerals, and the most important mineral for teeth is fluoride. Don’t forget, however, that too much fluoride is dangerous. Dr. Sykes can advise you on the exact dosage of fluoride for your child, taking into account whether your municipal water is fluoridated. Even though adults’ teeth have already formed, fluoride aids in remineralizing weakened enamel to a degree. This powerful mineral is applied to teeth during comprehensive dental cleanings at The Reno Dentist and daily with fluoride toothpaste.

Bacteria that causes enamel-destroying plaque loves a steady diet of sugar—from soda, candy, and even fruit juices. When enamel wears away, the teeth become vulnerable to decay, cracks, and discoloration. Sugary foods that are especially dangerous are those that get trapped in the spaces between teeth and the little pits and cracks in the molars. Candies that are chewy or hard can lodge in these spaces and allow for the adverse sugar to have direct contact with enamel until brushing occurs. Be sure to brush after each meal and before bed. In addition, remember to floss or use a water irrigating method to dislodge food particles trapped in spaces. By eating well, brushing properly, flossing regularly, and avoiding foods that stick to your teeth, you can have a beautiful smile in Reno.

At our practice, we have a full-service dental practice in Reno. Helping our dental patients stay healthy is important to us, and so is helping them achieve the smile they want through cosmetic dentistry procedures such as veneers, teeth whitening, and smile makeovers. The Reno Dentist in Reno has been serving the Sparks area since 2011. Please contact us at 775-322-5016 if you are looking for quality dental care from a local Reno dentist with the experience, expertise, and personalized attention you deserve.

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503


How Inflammation Affects Your Oral Health in Reno

inflamed gums Reno

Swollen and painful gums are symptoms of periodontal disease, an inflammatory gum disease. Swelling occurs from an auto-immune response of the body reacting to an infection. Infections are noticeable through pain, redness, and warmth. If the infection is left untreated, it can affect oral health in Reno. The body’s immune system wants to rid the bone of the harmful material the bacteria is creating. Over time, bone loss can develop.

Inflammation in the gums also is associated with atherosclerosis, the occurrence of fatty deposits inside of the body’s arteries. Inflammation coincides with an increase of the blood protein CRP (C-reactive protein), produced by the liver. The more inflammation there is, the more the liver produces CRP. The more CRP present, the more likely cardiovascular disease is present, along with related problems. CRP production is also related to arthritis, auto-immune disorders, and intestinal troubles.

Scientists are currently looking into the relationship between periodontal inflammation and CRP level and the effects outside of the oral cavity. Links have already been discovered between periodontal disease and pancreatic cancer, heart disease, and stroke. If inflammation is left untreated, gums can develop pockets that provide the perfect breeding ground for infection. The longer the infection persists, the more likely bone loss will ensue, eventually causing tooth loss.

It is crucial to practice preventive dental care daily at home and have regular visits to the dentist. Dental appointments should include an exam, cleaning, and full mouth x-rays, along with the important knowledge and instruction on how to properly care for oral health in Reno. It is also very important to see your dentist promptly if a tooth suddenly becomes sensitive or you experience any other changes. If you’re looking for a dentist in the area, we also offer general and cosmetic dentistry. Thanks for visiting our blog. For more details about oral health in Reno, give us a call at 775-322-5016.

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503


Oral Health in Reno: Instill Good Brushing Habits in Your Children

infant dental exam Reno Oral Health in Reno

New Reno parents may be surprised by the American Dental Association’s recommendations on infant oral care. Parents are advised to begin brushing their baby’s teeth as soon as the first teeth emerge. After all, brand-new teeth are just as vulnerable to tooth decay as older teeth.

Parents are encouraged to use a cloth and a smidgen of toothpaste about the size of a grain of rice to wipe each tooth. As more teeth come through, it’s even more crucial for the teeth to be brushed after each meal or, at least twice a day.

It is essential to select the proper toothbrush, in order to make brushing time as pleasant as possible. A soft-bristled brush is best with a small amount of toothpaste. Infant and toddler-sized toothbrushes with a small head of bristles are useful. Also, there are circle and triangular-shaped brushes that allow your toddler to walk around with their brush with less chance of injury in case of a fall.

If the toothpaste is causing an unpleasant struggle, brush without toothpaste. The goal is to remove food bits that will create bacteria followed by plaque and then cavities. When two teeth touch, it’s time to floss. Flossing is essential to make sure no food is lodged between the teeth. Proper flossing requires fine motor skills which most children don’t develop before age six or seven. Parents need to assist with flossing until they are sure their children can do it effectively for the sake of their own oral health in Reno.

Until the child is old enough to properly brush his or her teeth, they should receive adult supervision and guidance regarding oral health in Reno. Instilling the proper brushing and flossing methods will reap lifelong benefits. While it may seem that supervising them is time-consuming, remember that it’s creating a daily habit that will guard their oral health in Reno. Also, dental expenses related to poor oral hygiene will be avoided. Your child’s first dental visit should be within six months of the first tooth appearing and no later than their first birthday. It may seem early, but most parents bring their child to the pediatrician early. You can trust in your dentist to look out for potential problems and guide you about how to help your child preserve a healthy smile.

If you live in the Sparks area and don’t yet have a trusted family dentist, call The Reno Dentist at 775-322-5016 to schedule your child’s first dental appointment with Dr. Sykes. You can ask us about general dentistry, orthodontics, and gum disease treatment. By starting young, your child will become familiar with our dental practice and our friendly staff, ensuring that he or she never develops a fear of the dentist.

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503


3 Point Checklist Before Your Dental Consultation in Reno

Dental Consultation in Reno

Looking for a dentist because you’re losing the battle with plaque build-up, chipped teeth, tooth pain, stains, or tooth decay? Today’s post offers 3 important steps to take before you arrive at The Reno Dentist for a dental consultation in Reno.

The state of your mouth is critical to your fitness both emotionally and physically. Everyone wants to make a pleasing impression when they smile or speak. We understand that. The look, the odor, the feel, and the functionality of your biting surfaces are so important to your everyday experience that we recognize our critical role in finding solutions to these issues. Of course, your very first step is making contact. Please call us at 775-322-5016 or visit us online to schedule a dental consultation in Reno. After you schedule a consultation with our team, please take a moment to review the following checklist for a productive appointment experience:

1. Analyze your hygiene routine and gaps in technique or consistency.
When do you brush your teeth? Do you floss? How often? If not, why? We can review your habits and ascertain what is holding you back, if anything.

2. Pinpoint pain or problem areas throughout your mouth.
Persistent or intermittent? Sharp or dull? Triggered by hot or cold? Living with pain is unnecessary with the technology and expertise available these days. Usually, there are uncomplicated solutions to seemingly big pains. Let us address all your aches.

3. Define what you want your smile to look like.
If you can describe your optimal smile, we can explore how to obtain it. There are numerous possibilities for an extraordinary smile redesign as well as dental maintenance procedures. Cosmetic dentistry runs the gamut from teeth whitening to veneers to dental implants.

We anticipate you’ll have questions about the cost of dental implants, the price of filling a cavity, or placing a crown. We have answers for you. Our team is equipped and trained in procedures perfect for your needs. We see patients for services like dentures, Invisalign, and root canals. When it comes to looking for a dentist in Reno or the surrounding communities, please know that you will be in gentle and experienced hands with our knowledgeable team. Call today for a premium dental consultation in Reno.

We can make you look and feel great

Contact The Reno Dentist:

775-322-5016

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

855 W Seventh St Ste 200
Reno, Nevada
89503