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Sun Prairie, WI 53590
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By Robert J Carpenter DDS
June 05, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: cosmetic dentistry  

It’s never too late to consider what cosmetic dentistry can do for you.cosmetic dentistry

If you’ve ever felt jealous of another person’s smile and wished that you had a whiter, straighter or more even smile, then it might be time to talk to our Sun Prairie, WI, dentist Dr. R.J. Carpenter about what cosmetic dentistry can do for you. Cosmetic dentistry offers an amazing array of options for those looking to make small adjustments or those who want to give their smile a complete makeover.

  • Do you want to get rid of dental stains and discolorations?
  • Do you want to close up gaps between teeth?
  • Do you want to replace missing teeth?
  • Do you want to repair chips and cracks?
  • Do you have worn down teeth that make your smile look uneven?
  • Do you have teeth that overlap a bit?
  • Do you have malformed or misshapen teeth?

If you said “yes” to one or more of these questions above, then you’re in luck; cosmetic dentistry could be right for you. This is a convenient way to get the smile you’ve always hoped to have. Since your smile is a feature that is most noticeable, you want to leave a good impression. Cosmetic dentistry can help!

What does cosmetic dentistry do?

While the purpose of cosmetic dentistry is to improve the overall shape, color, length and look of one or more teeth, sometimes these procedures can also improve how a tooth functions. If teeth grinding or jaw clenching has worn down your teeth, you may find that getting dental veneers is just the right restoration for protecting those teeth from further damage.

Our Sun Prairie, WI, cosmetic dentist offers a variety of different options to meet your needs including:

  • Dental bonding
  • Tooth reshaping
  • Porcelain veneers
  • In-office (and at-home) teeth whitening
  • Dental bridges
  • Dental implants

If you are interested in any of these services then it’s time to talk to us about which one could be ideal for you. Dr. R.J. Carpenter in Sun Prairie, WI, is dedicated to helping you get the smile you deserve. No matter what cosmetic issues you are dealing with, if you want to change your smile for the better than call us and schedule a consultation today.

By Robert J Carpenter DDS
February 08, 2017
Category: Oral Health
Tags: root canal  

If there were ever a dental treatment in serious need of a public relations makeover, the root canal would be it. Long associated with root canalenormous levels of pain and trauma, root canals are actually fairly similar to dental fillings in terms of the actual procedure and levels of discomfort before and after treatment. For people suffering from the pain of a severely decayed, infected or damaged tooth, a root canal is actually a tool that dentists use to relieve pain, and prevent permanent nerve and tissue damage in the pulp (the soft tissue inside of each tooth). Dr. Robert Carpenter, a family dentist in Sun Prairie, WI, offers root canal therapy for both adult and pediatric patients.

Root Canal Therapy in Sun Prairie, WI

Bacterial infections and inflammation in the pulp tissue inside a tooth are the most common reason for a root canal. In addition to clearing away bacteria, the procedure also allows a dentist to remove any damaged or dead pulp tissue. The American Association of Endodontists recommends scheduling an appointment with a dentist for the following symptoms and dental problems:

  • Tooth pain
  • Trauma
  • Persistent hot or cold sensitivity
  • Swelling

The main causes of soft tissue damage and infection in a tooth are:

  • Cracked or dislodged teeth
  • Untreated tooth decay

Despite its reputation, root canal therapy not only helps to alleviate the pain that usually accompanies severe tooth decay and infections, it is also a means to save and preserve an otherwise healthy tooth from extraction. Contrary to popular belief, extractions are generally one of the most traumatic dental procedures. A root canal in comparison involves creating a small opening in the tooth to clear out bacteria and damaged tissue, followed by cosmetic bonding to seal the tooth, just like with a dental filling.

Find a Family Dentist in Sun Prairie, WI

For more information about the benefits of root canal therapy, and to set your mind at ease if you or a family member needs root canal therapy, contact the office of Dr. Carpenter by calling (608) 837-5527 to schedule an appointment today.

By Robert J Carpenter DDS
December 30, 2013
Category: Dental Procedures

Sometimes, we all need a bit of prompting to do what's good for us. When Serena Girardi, the 10-year-old daughter of New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi, needed to have orthodontic treatment, she was a little nervous. To help lessen her anxiety, Girardi, then 45 years old, made a deal: if she got braces, then he would too.

“What I didn't realize,” said Girardi in an interview with ESPN, “is that she only had to get four on her front teeth and I got the full mouthful.”

But that didn't stop the baseball great from keeping up his end of the bargain. In a separate deal with his son Dante, who also needed braces, Girardi agreed to wear blue rubber bands. “It's a good look,” he said. What will he do if his third child needs braces? Stay tuned...

Whether it starts as a bargain with your kids or as a promise to yourself, orthodontic treatment can offer real benefits at any age. In fact, about one out of five orthodontic patients today is an adult. Studies have shown that up to three-quarters of all adults have some form of orthodontic problem, like drifting or crowding of teeth. And having a great-looking smile not only improves self-confidence, but can also boost an adult's social life, and even enhance his or her career opportunities.

If you or your child may need braces, but you're put off by the dreary metal hardware you remember from back in the day, take heart! Plenty has changed in the field of orthodontics since you were a teenager — and it's not just the color of the rubber bands.

In many cases, clear or colorless ceramic braces can be used instead of metal ones. These stain-resistant orthodontic appliances blend in well with your own teeth, making them much less evident. It may be possible for them to be placed on the lingual (tongue) side of the teeth, where they're even less visible.

Clear aligners offer an alternative to braces that's appropriate for some people. Aligners are a series of precision-made “trays” composed of polyurethane plastic. Worn 20-22 hours per day for a period of months, these appliances gradually move teeth into an improved position. Besides being virtually invisible, another advantage of these trays is that they may be removed for eating and for important occasions. Once recommended only for adults, they have recently become available to teenagers as well.

What's the best way to find out whether you or someone in your family could benefit from orthodontics, and which treatment option best suits your individual needs? Come in to our office for a consultation! After a thorough examination, we would be happy to recommend the most appropriate treatment methods for your particular situation.

If you have questions about orthodontic treatment, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Orthodontics For The Older Adult” and “Clear Aligners for Teenagers.”

By Robert J Carpenter DDS
December 27, 2013
Category: Dental Procedures

The world is full of options to improve your appearance. But if you really want a dramatic change for the better, don't overlook one of the more prominent features of your face — your smile. The field of cosmetic dentistry has developed a vast array of procedures, techniques and materials to work this transformation.

First, though, it's important to undergo a smile analysis. During this review, we examine the major components of your current smile: the condition of your teeth and their alignment; their natural color and hue; your gum health; and the relationship between your upper and lower jaws. We then analyze these findings in context with the shape of your face, your eyes and your skin. Any changes we propose to make to your smile must fit with this bigger picture.

Of course, nothing is more foundational to a beautiful smile than good, basic hygiene. Besides a daily regimen, regular visits to our office for cleaning and polishing not only remove entrenched decay-causing plaque or tartar, but also staining that can spoil your appearance. Whitening procedures, at home or in our office, can also brighten up an otherwise drab smile.

But what if you have chipped or broken teeth, or some other abnormality? That's where our artistry as a cosmetic dentist can truly make a difference. In some cases, using bonding materials, tooth-colored restorations or veneers may be the best option, if enough of the tooth structure is still intact. If not, porcelain crowns may be in order.

Nor are we limited to those options. Your particular situation may call for a more integrated approach to smile enhancement. Orthodontics to realign teeth and treat for malocclusion (where the teeth on the upper and lower jaws do not meet properly) could be part of that approach, as well as replacing missing teeth with dental implants that replicate the teeth they replace.

The key is to devise the best approach that couples reality with your expectations. It will change not only your smile, but also your life.

If you would like more information on cosmetic dentistry, 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 “Cosmetic Dentistry: A Time for Change..”


When Olympic figure skater Kristi Yamaguchi wanted to help her kids develop good oral health habits, the gold-medal-winner made good use of a family connection: Her father Jim Yamaguchi is a practicing dentist in the San Francisco Bay area who treats her entire brood. As she said in a recent interview, when she suspects the kids may be spending a little less effort on oral hygiene than they should, she playfully admonishes them: “You've got to brush your teeth better than that. Papa-san is going to know!”

Not all kids are lucky enough to have a grandpa who's a dentist — but every child can learn how to help take care of his or her oral health with age-appropriate techniques, plus plenty of parental guidance and encouragement. What's the best way to help your kids develop good oral hygiene routines? We're glad you asked!

Through babyhood and the toddler years, parents have the main responsibility for keeping kids' teeth clean. But as they begin to put away pacifiers and cease sucking thumbs — around ages 2 to 4 — children can also begin to help with their own oral hygiene routine. By then, kids will probably be used to the feel of gentle brushing, and may be eager to try it themselves.

A soft-bristled brush with a pea-sized dab of toothpaste is all they need to get started… along with a good dose of parental patience. Show them how to wiggle the brush back and forth from the gum line, and all around the upper and lower teeth, both in front and in back. At first, they will probably need plenty of help. But after the age of 6 or so, as their manual dexterity increases, so will their ability to get the job done.

You'll still have to check their work periodically — but you can also teach them how to do it on their own: Have your child run his or her tongue over the tooth surfaces. If they feel smooth and silky, they're probably clean too. If not… try, try again. This test is a good guideline to brushing effectiveness — but if you want to know for sure, use a temporary dye called a disclosing tablet (available at many drugstores) to reveal unseen buildups of plaque bacteria.

What else can you do to give your children the best chance at keeping a healthy mouth and sparkly teeth? Set a positive example! Make sure you (and your kids) eat a healthy diet, get moderate exercise, limit between-meal treats — and visit the dentist regularly. The encouragement you'll get after having a good dental checkup will make you feel like a gold medalist — even if the praise isn't coming from grandpa.

If you would like more information on how to help your child develop good oral health habits, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Dentistry & Oral Health For Children” and “How to Help Your Child Develop the Best Habits for Oral Health.”

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