Posts for: February, 2019

By Michael J Morris, DDS
February 18, 2019
Category: Dental Procedures
WemayNeedtoBuilduptheBoneinYourJawbeforeImplants

Dental implant technology has advanced at such an astounding rate in recent years that you can now walk into a dentist's office with a problem tooth and out the same day with a new one. Unfortunately, not all dental situations allow for this possibility.

For example, you might be considering an implant many years after losing a tooth. But there's a potential problem: there might not be enough supporting bone. While an implant might still be possible, inadequate bone complicates the matter.

Because implants are essentially tooth root replacements, they require a certain amount of bone for stability and the best attractive outcome. As a general rule, implants need to be surrounded by  at least 1.5-2.0 millimeters of healthy bone to support an implant. But you might not have enough if your tooth has been missing for awhile, regardless if you have or haven't worn dentures or other restorations.

That's because bone has a life cycle in which older cells die and newer ones form to take their place. As we chew or bite, the force generated travels up through the teeth to the bone to stimulate this new growth. Without a tooth the bone doesn't receive this stimulus, which can slow the growth rate. Over time the affected bone can lose its volume and density.

If we find you've experienced loss to the point your bone won't support an implant, that doesn't automatically mean this popular restoration is out of the picture. But it will require us first performing a procedure known as augmentation or bone grafting to help rejuvenate some of the lost bone.

With grafting, we place processed bone grafting material in the jaw through a minor surgical procedure to form a scaffold for new bone to grow upon. After several months this can result in several millimeters of new growth maintaining the width of the underlying bone, which in turn may be able to support an implant.

Bone grafting is quite common, often performed at the same time as tooth extraction if there's going to be a time lag before installing an implant. Even if performed later, though, it can successfully rejuvenate lost bone and make it possible for you to take advantage of durable, life-like implants.

If you would like more information on dental implants, 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 “Dental Implants after Previous Tooth Loss.”


By Michael J Morris, DDS
February 08, 2019
Category: Oral Health
Tags: oral hygiene  
TestYoureBrushingandFlossingSuccesswithaPlaqueDisclosingAgent

Brushing and flossing your teeth provides a lot of benefits, including a brighter smile and fresher breath. But the primary benefit—and ultimate goal—is removing dental plaque. This biofilm of bacteria and food remnants on tooth and gum surfaces is the number one cause for dental disease.

Brushing and flossing can effectively keep plaque under control. Unfortunately, plaque can be a stubborn foe, hiding in areas easily missed if you're not thorough enough.

So how do you know you're doing a good job brushing and flossing? One quick way is to use your tongue or dental floss to feel for any grittiness, a possible sign of remaining plaque. Ultimately, your dentist or hygienist can give you the best evaluation of your hygiene efforts during your three or six-month checkup.

But there's another way to find out more definitively how well you're removing plaque in between dental visits: a plaque disclosing agent. These over-the-counter products contain a dye solution that stains plaque so it stands out from clean tooth surfaces.

A disclosing agent, which can come in the form of tablets, swabs or a liquid, is easy to use. After brushing and flossing, you apply the agent according to the product's directions. The dye reacts with plaque to stain it a distinct color. You may also find products with two-tone dyes that stain older and newer plaque different colors to better gauge your overall effectiveness.

You then examine your teeth in the bathroom mirror, looking especially for patterns of missed plaque. For example, if you see dyed plaque running along the gum line, you'll know you need to concentrate your hygiene there.

After observing what you can do to improve your future efforts, you can then brush and floss your teeth to remove as much of the dyed plaque as you can. The staining from the dye is temporary and any remaining will fade over a few hours.

Using a disclosing agent regularly could help you improve your overall hygiene technique and reduce your risk of disease. Ask your dentist for recommendations on products.

If you would like more information on improving your oral hygiene, 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 “Plaque Disclosing Agents.”


By Michael J Morris, DDS
February 07, 2019
Category: Dental Procedures

InvisalignGet a straighter smile the clear way with Invisalign treatment in Spring, TX.

Are you an adult who wants a straighter smile? If you said “yes” then you’ve come to the right place. Now, more than ever before, more and more adults are getting the smiles they want without ever having to wear metal braces in order to do it. From the office of our Spring, TX, family dentist Dr. Michael Morris, find out how Invisalign offers a discreet way to fix crooked, misaligned smiles.

How does Invisalign work?

While there are other systems that use clear aligners to straighten smiles, it is Invisalign alone that uses a proprietary thermoplastic to fix misaligned teeth comfortably and with incredible precision.

Aligners are customized based on the issue or issues you are dealing with, as well as the measurements of your teeth. In order to create your aligners, our Spring, TX, dentist will need to map out which teeth will need to shift and exactly how much they should move to give you the results you want. We will take digital images of your teeth, which will be uploaded to special computer software so we can map out tooth movements.

From there, the information is then submitted to an Invisalign lab where they will create your set of aligners. Once your aligners are complete your treatment is about to begin. What you have to do is simple. All you have to do is wear your aligners for around 20-22 hours each day, only removing them before eating or brushing and flossing. It’s that easy. You wear your aligners and the incredible technology does all the work.

Each aligner is worn for about 2 weeks at a time and then replaced with the next set in your treatment plan. As you go through each aligner you should see gradual and positive changes in your smile.

What can Invisalign treat?

Invisalign is a great option for both older teens and adults who are dealing with common misalignment problems such as:

  • Overbites
  • Underbites
  • Crossbites
  • Open bites
  • Crooked teeth
  • Gaps between teeth
  • Crowding

If you are interested in finding out whether Invisalign is the right way to straighten your smile in Spring, TX, then call our dental office today to schedule your consultation with Dr. Morris. Let Invisalign give you a smile you can’t wait to show off.




Louetta and Spring, TX Family Dentist
Michael J Morris, DDS
9318 Louetta Road Suite 600
Spring, TX 77379
(281) 379-6939
Family Dentist in Spring and Louetta, TX Call For Pricing Options

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