My Blog
By Louis Sertich, DMD
November 09, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Root Canal  

If you have ever put off or considered putting off going to the dentist out of fear that the cure is worse than the disease, you are not alone. root canalRoot canal therapy is an especially feared and misunderstood procedure that causes needless stress and anxiety in people of all ages. But putting off going to the dentist for regular check-ups and preventive treatment (the American Dental Association recommends every six months) or when symptoms develop will do more harm than good. The dentists at Merrillville Dental Center, Dr. Louis Sertich and Dr. Timothy Kamp offer root canal therapy and other general and cosmetic dentistry services.

Root Canal Therapy and General Dentistry in Merrillville, IN

A root canal is performed when the pulp ( the network of nerves and tissue inside each tooth) becomes inflamed or infected, which usually occurs when bacteria gets into the pulp in a cracked or broken tooth, or through severe tooth decay. Schedule an appointment with your dentist if you are experiencing the following symptoms:

  • Pain
  • Signs of infection and inflammation around a tooth or between the gums
  • You have experienced trauma from a fall, sports injury, or another forceful impact to a tooth
  • Swelling or tenderness around the gums
  • Extreme tooth sensitivity
  • Dark spots and discolorations on a tooth
  • Difficulty chewing or when pressure is applied to the tooth

Only a dentist can determine whether a root canal is necessary to repair a damaged tooth. But if your dentist decides that you do need root canal therapy, don't worry. Contrary to popular belief, it is actually not very different from getting a cavity filled in terms of pain and discomfort levels, and will actually save your tooth from pain and more invasive dental treatments in the future.

Find a General Dentist in Merrillville, IN

Pain can be a sign of tooth decay or an infection, which can put your tooth and oral health at risk. If you are experiencing pain or other signs of a dental problem, don't hesitate to seek help. For more information on the benefits of root canal therapy and other restorative dental treatments, contact Merrillville Dental Center by calling (219) 755-0045 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Sertich or Dr. Kamp today.

By Louis Sertich, DMD
August 14, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures

Do you fondly remember the days when you took your healthy smile for granted? After tooth loss, it's not unusual to feel a little depressed denturesabout the change in your appearance. In addition to concerns about the way you look, you may also find it harder to eat or even speak clearly. These changes don't have to be permanent, thanks to partials or dentures. With the help of our Merrillville, IN, dentists, Dr. Louis Sertich and Dr. Timothy Kamp, dentures can change your life.

Why it's important to replace your lost teeth

Your diet has probably changed significantly since your teeth were extracted. Without teeth, it's hard to chew fruits, vegetables, meat and poultry. Unfortunately, if you limit your diet to soft foods only, you may not meet your nutritional needs, which can increase your risk of illness. Replacing your teeth with partials or dentures allows you to once again eat the foods you need to stay healthy.

Do people suddenly have trouble understanding you? Losing all or some of your teeth can have a dramatic impact on your speech. Luckily, dentures provide a simple solution to speech problems. A full smile is also good for your mental health. When you don't feel self-conscious about your missing teeth, you may be more likely to interact with your Merrillville friends and neighbors and participate in activities.

What type of dentures do I need?

Depending on the number of teeth you've lost, you may benefit from:

  • Full Dentures: Full dentures are the ideal choice if you've lost all of your teeth. The dentures replace the teeth in your upper and lower jaw and rest against your gums. Each row of teeth is mounted on a pink base that resembles gum tissue. Full dentures are used after your mouth has healed fully from a tooth extraction.
  • Immediate Dentures: Unlike full dentures, you can begin wearing immediate dentures as soon as your remaining teeth are extracted. Wearing these dentures right away may make the adjustment process easier. Because your mouth will change as it heals, frequent adjustments will be needed to ensure that the dentures fit properly.
  • Partial Dentures: Partial dentures replace a section of missing teeth. These removable dentures are held in place by small hooks that slip over your natural teeth.

Ready to improve your smile with partials or dentures? Call our Merrillville, IN, dentists, Dr. Sertich and Dr. Kamp, at (219) 755-0045 to schedule an appointment.

By Louis Sertich, DMD
June 15, 2017
Category: Dental Care

A tooth can become cracked due to an injury or from using your teeth inappropriately (like opening a bottle top). In some cases, it’s not cracked toothimmediately obvious that there’s a problem requiring dental assistance. Here are a few of the signs you should look for a cracked tooth and information on how a general dentist at Merrillville Dental Center, P.C. in Merrillville, IN can help.

Pain When Eating
One way to know that a tooth may be cracked is feeling pain when you bite down on your food—especially something crunchy. In many cases, a cracked tooth happens because of biting down on something hard, like a jawbreaker candy. After a crack forms, it gradually becomes more and more painful when you chew on that tooth. This is because the inner layers are being exposed to the outer elements. They need to be protected to avoid a major dental issue.

Because a cracked tooth may cause the enamel to weaken, it can become discolored over time. If you notice that one tooth is getting darker than the others, that may be a sign of a crack in the enamel. In some cases, that discoloration may be irreversible, which is why it’s important to see your Merrillville as soon as you see a change in the appearance of the tooth.

A Visual Check
Sometimes a crack in the tooth is visible to the eye. Take a close look at the tooth in the mirror under a bright light and inspect it carefully for a hairline fracture. The line may be more visible if it has been stained by food or drink. 

Get Help
Of course, the best way to identify whether a tooth is cracked is to see a dentist for an exam and X-rays. Treatment in the early stages is best. Your general dentist can fix many cracked tooth problems with root canal therapy, crowns or dental bonding. Call (219) 292-7807 in Merrillville, IN, today to schedule a visit with Dr. Louis Sertich or Dr. Timothy Kamp.

By Louis Sertich, DMD
May 04, 2017
Category: Dental Care
Tags: Lost Teeth   Dental Implants  

Despite the fact that it is a common problem that affects over half of all Americans over the age of 30 according to the American Dental Association (ADA), tooth loss is something that most people don't really worry about until it happens, either through an accident, or as the result of gum (periodontal) disease. Whether you are missing several or even just one tooth, it can have an impact on your oral health as well as the cosmetic appearance of your smile. The dentists at Merrillville Dental Center, Dr. Louis Sertich and Dr. Timothy Kamp, advise qualified adult patients to consider dental implants to restore a smile damaged by tooth loss.

Dental Implants in Merrillville, IN

Traditional tooth replacement options like dentures and crowns and bridges replace the cosmetic portion of a missing tooth, making it possible to eat and speak clearly after tooth loss. They also do a very good job of restoring or even improving the aesthetic appearance of your smile. But there is a lot more to tooth loss than meets the eye. It may not be visible when we smile, but a tooth's root plays a critical role in maintaining oral health and the stability of the remaining teeth. Once a tooth falls out, the surrounding bone tissue begins to erode. From shrinking gums to inflammation and infections, bone loss is a major side effect of tooth loss. Dental implants are the only restoration option that restores the root, which helps to maintain healthy bone tissue and permanently anchor the cosmetic crown in place. Dental implants are a good option for adult patients with sufficient bone density in the gums to support an implant, and who are also in good general health.

Contact Your Dentist in Merrillville, IN

Missing teeth do not have to ruin your smile or oral health. For more information on the benefits of dental implants, and to find out if they are the right tooth replacement option for you, contact Merrillville Dental Center by calling (219) 292-7807 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Sertich or Dr. Kamp today.

By Louis Sertich, DMD
February 09, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures

If you aren’t visiting your dentist regularly this could spell trouble for your visits

There are so many excuses for why you might not visit our Merrillville, IN, general dentists, Dr. Louis Sertich and Dr. Timothy Kamp, as often as you should. Perhaps your schedule is hectic or you have some anxiety surrounding the dental chair. Whatever it is it shouldn’t stand in the way of visiting us for routine visits. We are here to make these visits easy so that you don’t have to deal with procedures in the future. Here are the many reasons preventive dental appointments are crucial to healthy teeth and gums.

Detect Problems Early

Nothing is worse than staying away from our Merrillville dentist so long that once you come back you are faced with multiple cavities, gum disease or other issues. By coming in every six months we can detect potential problems early on. Prevention is key to a healthy smile. Between our thorough physical exams and annual x-rays, we can discover issues when they are often reversible or simple to treat.

Prevent Complications

Dental problems don’t typically go away on their own without the proper treatment. Decay will continue to progress until it affects the inner structures of the tooth. Gum disease will continue to destroy healthy gum tissue and lead to bone and tooth loss. To prevent smaller issues from turning into full-blown problems, it’s important that you visit us regularly.

Screen for Oral Cancer

While oral cancer may not be a disease you think about too frequently, it can be life threatening when ignored or not detected soon enough. How else will you detect oral cancer if you don’t come in for your routine dental exams? Since most symptoms don’t start to appear until cancer has progressed, it’s important that you keep up with your appointments. Screenings are painless and take only a couple minutes. And the biggest benefit is that it could just save your life.

Get a Clean Smile

Even the most meticulous oral care routine may still leave plaque on teeth. After all, it can be challenging to get your toothbrush into every nook and cranny. Plaque quickly hardens into tartar if it isn’t removed. Since tartar can lead to gum disease and other issues, it’s important that it isn’t allowed to stay on teeth. Of course, tartar can only be removed with the special dental instruments we use.

Don’t forget to schedule your next routine dental cleaning in Merrillville, IN. Call Merrillville Dental Center today and get your smile back on track.

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