My Blog
February 12, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: dental implants   dentures  

Anyone who is dealing with tooth loss is most likely looking for a long-term solution to their problems. While there are a variety ofdental implants options for treating your tooth loss, there is only one real alternative that promises a lifelong resolution, dental implants. Sound good? Dental implants can help you in several ways. In addition to filling in gaps and replacing missing teeth, dental implants also restore tooth functioning and improve speech. Different types of treatments are available to meet your needs, from replacing just one missing tooth with a single dental implant to all your teeth with implant supported dentures. At Kemlage Family Dentistry, Dr. Thomas Kemlage and Dr. Andrew Kemlage are your Fenton, MO, dentists for dental implants.

What is a dental implant?

By now you’ve probably heard about dental implants, but you may still not be sure what they are. These prosthetic replacements for a missing tooth are comprised of three parts: a small metal post (the implant), an abutment, and a dental crown. The crown is the part of your implant that is visible when you smile and is designed to look and function just like a natural tooth. While the implant is placed into the jawbone it’s the abutment that serves to connect the implant to the artificial tooth above the gumline.

How does a dental implant work?

The first step to getting a dental implant requires your dentist to drill a small hole into the jawbone where your implant will then be placed. The procedure is performed under local anesthesia so you won’t feel discomfort. Then the implant is placed, and the gums are stitched up.

Over the course of several weeks, osseointegration will take place. This is when the tissue and bone cells begin to attach to the surface of the implant, locking the implant into the jawbone. The durability of the material coupled with osseointegration makes the dental implant comparable to natural teeth—something that other prosthetic treatments just can’t promise. Your Fenton, MO, dentist can explain the specific ways in which dental implants can help you. Other benefits of dental implants include:

  • Replacing missing teeth
  • Filling in gaps in your smile
  • Boosting self-confidence
  • Restoring normal tooth functioning, including biting and chewing
  • Improving speech by correcting tongue placement when speaking
  • Creating a more youthful appearance by providing support for sagging facial muscles

Implant Supported Dentures

Dental implants can be used to anchor a complete or partial denture (similar to a bridge). The denture is designed to clip or clamp to the implants, giving you a much sturdier set of teeth. To be a candidate for this denture option, you must have sufficient healthy bone tissue. In most cases, about two to four implants are added to specific areas of the gum line to serve as supports for the device. Implant supported dentures are more stable than traditional dentures, as they are more likely to stay in place and less likely to move around.


There are some instances in which traditional removable dentures, whether full or partial, may be the right choice for your situation. From filling in gaps to replacing missing teeth, dentures provide several benefits. The two main types of dentures are partial and full. Partial dentures are best when you still have some natural teeth and do not need to replace a full set of teeth. Full dentures are necessary when there are no natural teeth remaining.

To learn more about dental implants, schedule an appointment with Dr. Thomas Kemlage or Dr. Andrew Kemlage, your Fenton, MO, dentists, by calling Kemlage Family Dentistry at (636) 225-1777.

December 07, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: cosmetic dentistry   veneers  

Want a more beautiful smile?veneers

Your Fenton, MO, dentists, Dr. Thomas Kemlage and Dr. Andrew Kemlage, have a great solution that's both cost effective and time saving. If you're interested in finding out more about veneers and how they can help you, then you've come to the right place!

Who needs veneers?

Think of veneers as a resurfacing process. Your Fenton, MO dentists eliminate the flaws ruining your smile. Here are some examples of what veneers can cover:

  • Dents, grooves, cracks and fractures found on the surface of your teeth that may have been caused by injury, for example.
  • Slight gaps, overcrowdedness, and crooked and misshaped teeth can be fixed. These issues can simply be hereditary, but cause issues with bite and chewing function.
  • Discoloration and stains can be removed to give you a brighter smile. Discoloration could be due to age or other factors like smoking or drinking tea and coffee.

What's the process like?

Veneers are porcelain shells that are installed to the surface of your teeth. They have color stability, which means they are resistant to staining.

This is what the process is like:

  • The dentist will examine your teeth and make sure you have no severe issues, like cavities, that may need to be treated first. Then he will assess whether veneers are right for you.
  • If you're a good fit, the dentists will remove some enamel off the surface of your teeth. This is a permanent procedure, so make sure veneers are something you are comfortable with. The enamel is removed so the veneers align properly with the rest of your natural teeth or other veneers that will be installed as well.

How to care for veneers?

Porcelain veneers are strong, but it's important to take proper care of them. Brushing and flossing are essential, and don't skip your bi-yearly exam with your doctor.

Veneers are a great way to improve the appearance of your smile, so call Kemlage Family Dentisty in Fenton, MO, today!

September 25, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures

What your dentists in Fenton, Missouri want you to knowroot canal

If you have a tooth that hurts, it may be a sign that you need root canal treatment. A root canal, also called an endodontic procedure, is a great way to eliminate dental pain but still enable you to keep your tooth. Dr. Thomas Kemlage and Dr. Andrew Kemlage at Kemlage Family Dentistry in Fenton, Missouri want to share what you need to know about root canal treatment.

These are just a few of the reasons why you should try to keep your tooth:

  • Going without the tooth can cause you to lose bone support
  • Going without the tooth can cause biting and chewing problems

So how do you know if you need a root canal? There are several signs and symptoms to look for including:

  • Drainage or pus near the root of a tooth
  • Swelling and redness around a tooth
  • Throbbing pain that doesn’t resolve
  • Sharp pain when you eat hot or cold foods
  • Pain that radiates into your face or jaws

If you notice these signs or symptoms, you should seek out your dentists in Fenton, Missouri. They will perform temperature and vitality tests and take digital x-rays to determine if your tooth shows evidence of needing a root canal.

If you do need a root canal, your dentists will begin by opening a small hole in the top of your affected tooth. The infected and diseased tissue is drawn out through the opening and a calming, sedative material is placed inside the tooth. After a healing period and the pain and pressure are gone, the sedative is removed and replaced with a permanent inert material. As a final step, the hole is filled in with a small restoration or a dental crown is placed to protect the tooth.

Root canal treatment is the solution to eliminating dental pain without sacrificing your tooth. For more information about root canal treatment and other dental services, call Dr. Thomas Kemlage and Dr. Andrew Kemlage at Kemlage Family Dentistry in Fenton, Missouri today!

August 01, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures

You're probably familiar with the basic idea behind 3D printing, a manufacturing technique where a computer aids in the construction of a cerecsolid, three-dimensional object. It seems too futuristic to be real, but many items are now made in this manner. At Kemlage Family Dentistry, we use a similar concept called CEREC to create beautiful, durable crowns and other restorations right in our office in Fenton, MO. Thousands of dentists worldwide are using this amazing in-office technology. You'll learn here why Dr. Thomas Kemlage and Dr. Andrew Kemlage are proud to offer it to their patients!

What does CEREC stand for?

CEREC is short for Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics.

How does CEREC work?

After your tooth has been prepared for a restoration, our trained dental team will "scan" the area using a handheld device. The series of resulting pictures will be downloaded to a computer program, where a 3D model of a crown or onlay will be designed. This data will then be sent to our "printer," where it will be milled out to the exact specifications. In about an hour, you'll have a restoration that will fit perfectly and look just like a natural tooth!

Why is CEREC preferred?

Dentists like Dr. Andrew Kemlage and Dr. Thomas Kemlage appreciate the convenience and predictability of CEREC. There's no need to place a temporary crown, which can be unreliable and potentially cause more problems during the period of time that the permanent crown is being crafted in a laboratory. Likewise, patients are impressed with CEREC technology because it saves them time; they do not have to return to their Fenton family dentist's office for removal of a temporary restoration and placement of a permanent one. CEREC restorations are also extremely accurate.

If you'd like to experience CEREC technology for your next tooth restoration, Kemlage Family Dentistry in Fenton, MO is where you need to be! Call us to schedule an appointment today!

By Thomas Kemlage DDS / Andrew T. Kemlage DDS
July 23, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures

Cosmetic and restorative dentistry is filled with a varied array of procedures, materials and techniques that can address any shortcoming with your smile. Whatever your condition, there’s a means to correct or enhance your smile.

The real question, though, is whether we’re both, patient and dentist, on the same page as to what’s best to enhance your smile. Dentists have a different perspective on smile outcomes than the average layperson. We’re clued into aspects like tooth alignment with facial features or gum-to-lip distance influenced by our professional training and experience. You, though, may see your smile in terms of other features that define beauty like mouth expressions or lip shape.

Bridging these differing points of view requires open and honest communication. Here are three considerations to make that happen.

Build trust between you and your dentist. It’s natural for us to have differing views on what constitutes proper smile aesthetics based on the perspectives previously mentioned. Working through those perspectives to arrive at a unified plan requires trust that both of us desire the same outcome: a beautiful smile you’re happy to display to the world.

“Seeing” your future smile can help ease your misgivings. It’s one thing to try to imagine a certain treatment outcome — it’s quite another to actually see it beforehand. And you can, through computer simulation that takes a picture of your current face and smile and then augments them digitally so you can see how your smile will appear after proposed treatment. It’s also possible in some cases for you to wear temporary or “provisional” restorations so that not only can you see how they look, but also how they feel and function in the mouth.

Understand what “type” of restoration patient you are. Although everyone is different, we can usually characterize patients and their expectations in two ways. Some patients are “perfect-minded” — they want restorations that offer the maximum symmetry, regularity and tooth brightness. Others are more “natural-minded” in that the changes they seek don’t drastically alter their natural appearance, but are just enough to look different and create a sense of character. Knowing what you really want — a drastic change or a subtle enhancement — will help you communicate your desires more clearly and help us design the treatment options that best fit your expectations.

If you would like more information on fostering communication between dentists and patients, 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 “Great Expectations.”

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