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Patient Resources

Frequently Asked Questions

Cosmetic Dentistry

What's the best way to whiten my teeth?

Stores sell many whitening products, and you can get take-home gels and trays from your dentist, but neither is as strong as procedures done in a dental office

If you want to try an over-the-counter whitener, look for one with an ADA seal. Check with your dentist for advice before you buy, especially if you have dental work or dark stains. And don't keep using them, or you could damage your teeth.

Why should I get professional teeth whitening?

The enamel on your teeth is porous, making the surface difficult to keep white. Coffee, tea, red wine, nicotine and other substances can leave stains on your teeth, especially when you use these items every day. Even with excellent oral hygiene and regular dental cleanings, teeth become dull with age. This can make you look older and detract from the beauty of your smile. With professional bleaching or whitening, you can safely make your teeth brighter for a younger, healthier-appearing smile. At Glacier Peak Dentistry, we only use products that are not only effective but safe for your teeth and overall health.

Do you offer take-home teeth whitening?

Glacier Peak Dentistry is proud to feature whitening products from Opalescence. Only licensed dental professionals can dispense Opalescence and their take-home whitening gel produce professional whitening results in a safe, effective, and customized way in the convenience of your own home.

We use Opalescence products because of their proven effectiveness and excellent track record. Millions of people owe their white and shiny smiles to Opalescence, and we’re here to show you why. Just one treatment with Opalescence can leave your teeth up to eight shades whiter, making it perfect for those who want to achieve quick and dramatic whitening results.

Is teeth whitening covered by insurance?

Teeth whitening is considered a cosmetic treatment since it only enhances the appearance of the teeth and does not fix any medical or health-related issues. Therefore, most dental insurance policies do not cover professional teeth whitening or other cosmetic procedures, such as tooth shaping, filing, gum contouring, or veneers.

We know how much teeth whitening can enhance not only one’s appearance but one’s confidence, approachability and overall image. Let our team at Glacier Peak Dentistry help you find financial solutions to get the dental care you need for your family. Contact our office today to find out if we accept your insurance or to learn more about our other financial payment options. Make your dream of a beautiful white smile a reality with professional whitening treatments from Glacier Peak Dentistry. We are confident that you will be thrilled with the fantastic results.

Does teeth whitening hurt?

Some may find that teeth whitening cause their teeth to ache and become sensitive to extreme temperatures. This is because many professional and At-Home teeth whitening kits use certain ingredients that can cause sensitivity for some. It is often most noticeable with extreme hot and cold food or beverages. It can also cause an achy feeling during the whitening process. Opalescence products, however, include desensitizing ingredients that provide additional comfort by reducing sensitivity. Thankfully, any sensitivity that starts with teeth whitening is typically short-term and resolves with time.

What are the benefits of Invisalign?

Invisalign Clear Aligners are nearly invisible when worn. The aligners can be removed at any time to allow the user to eat and drink whatever they would like during treatment. They are also very easy to clean and maintain, and the user can continue with their usual oral care practices. Invisalign is also great for athletes, due to the fact that the aligners do not present any injury risk for the user during athletic competition.

Visits to the dentist are also less frequent than they are for traditional braces which adds to the convenience factor. This is a vast improvement over wearing metal braces. Braces often require constant adjustments and repairs. Metal wires and rubber bands can break or need repair. Braces can poke your gums and hide food and bacteria behind the brackets. Certain foods must be avoided and braces can change the way you look and speak.

How long does Invisalign take to work?

Invisalign treatment involves wearing a series of tightly fitted aligners to continuously move and adjust the positioning of one’s teeth. The user must wear their current aligner for 20 to 22 hours per day removing them only for brushing, flossing, eating, and drinking, and they will replace it with a new one approximately every two weeks. This will continue until the desired results are achieved, which normally takes one to two years. Time frames differ depending on degree of correction need and adherence to the schedule.

Does Invisalign hurt?

It is not uncommon for Invisalign to cause some discomfort when they are first fitted and when new trays are started, which typically occurs about every two weeks. However, compared to traditional braces, Invisalign clear aligners are much more comfortable. Most of our Glacier Peak patients report that the discomfort is minor and will often subside after a few days. If the discomfort lasts longer than a few days, our team at Glacier Peak Dentistry will do what we can to evaluate the situation, rule out infection or other complications, and help reduce the pain, making you as comfortable as possible.

Am I a good candidate for Invisalign?

Glacier Peak Dentistry offers the popular Invisalign clear aligners as an orthodontic treatment that effectively straightens your smile without cumbersome metal braces.

Adults and teens love the comfort and discreet appearance of these clear aligners to improve the look and health of their smile. Good candidates for Invisalign are those who need mild to moderate correction of crooked or gapped teeth but want a treatment that will produce a beautiful smile in less time, are less noticeable and more convenient than traditional braces. Most mild cases of overbites, underbites, and crossbites can also be effectively improved with Invisalign clear aligners.

Contact Glacier Peak Dentistry today to schedule your consultation to learn more about clear orthodontics and whether or not they are the best option for you. Only our dental care experts can determine if you can benefit from Invisalign treatment.

Emergency Dentistry

What is considered a dental emergency?

The dental experts at Glacier Peak Dentistry know that not all dental emergencies are the same. A patient might chip or crack a tooth that was healthy before, or they might experience sudden tooth pain that is causing them significant distress. Another common issue is for a dental restoration to fail and require immediate maintenance.

Whether your problem is affecting your comfort or your appearance, our goal is to provide you with the best solution. We will work quickly to fix the problem and take measures to ensure that it does not happen again. Keep in mind that more serious problems like a lost tooth may require multiple visits to provide a permanent solution. Our experts can provide you with a more accurate outlook after we have initially examined the situation. Once our treatment is complete, you will be able to smile proudly and use your teeth as effectively as ever.

Do you have emergency appointments available?

Yes. Our Glacier Peak staff will do everything possible to accommodate a patient the very same-day when they experience a dental emergency. If this isn’t feasible, then we will make sure to see them as soon as possible. Our goal is to accommodate you and provide you with the solution you need in a timely manner.

We know that requiring emergency or unexpected dental treatment is never what a person had hoped for. It can disrupt their plans and leave the individual feeling stressed and anxious. That is why our team is committed to ensuring that our emergency dentistry services are top-notch and consistent. We do everything we can to provide our patients with quick solutions in these unplanned situations so that they can resume their normal lives. Our dental care team is experienced, compassionate and understanding of any issues you may be going through. We are here to work with you so that you can get the results you need. You can count on Glacier Peak Dentistry for top-quality emergency dentistry in Thornton, Colorado.

General Dentistry

Are you accepting new patients?

Absolutely! Furthermore, we feel confident that you will be so impressed with our level of care and service during your first visit, you will schedule subsequent visits to our office.

Glacier Peak Dentistry is different from most dental offices that you may have been to in the past. We strive to make what we know can be a stressful process go as smoothly and painlessly as possible for our patients, new or established.

Online, we have convenient new patient forms that you can fill out at your convenience prior to your visit. This helps make check-in quick and enables our team check your insurance benefits and answer any questions you may have about costs or procedures.

Contact Glacier Peak Dentistry today to schedule your first appointment with us! From the moment you arrive for your appointment, we will do our best to make sure you have the most enjoyable dental visit you have ever experienced.

What dental insurance do you take?

At Glacier Peak Dentistry, we will submit all insurance claims for you. We will attempt to help you receive full insurance benefits. Utilizing the preventative care benefits available through almost all insurance plans can be the best way to reduce your dental costs and prevent larger oral health issues.

We understand that not all families have dental insurance and even those that do may have some out-of-pocket expenses. To ensure that our patients can still get the dental care they need when they have limited insurance coverage or no coverage at all, we have other financial payment options here at Glacier Peak Dentistry. For our patients without dental insurance, we have an affordable Dental Savers Plan to cover exams and cleanings while discounting many other needed treatments.

We do not want your oral health to be ignored due to financial concerns. Our team at Glacier Peak Dentistry can help you find financial solutions to get the dental care you need for your family. Contact our office today to find out if we accept your insurance or to learn more about our other financial payment options.

What type of toothbrush and toothpaste should I use?

Buy toothbrushes with soft bristles. Medium and firm ones can damage teeth and gums. Use soft pressure, for 2 minutes, two times a day.

Both powered and manual toothbrushes clean teeth well. Manual brushes with mixed bristle heights or angled bristles clean better than those with all flat, even bristles. Powered toothbrushes may be easier if you have trouble using your hands.

Set a reminder to replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months. Toss it sooner if the bristles look bent or splayed out. Bent bristles don't clean as well. (They're also a sign you may be brushing too hard.)

Most toothpastes will clear away bacteria growth and acids from food and drinks. Toothpastes with the American Dental Association (ADA) Seal of Acceptance always have fluoride, which strengthens and protects teeth. If you want a non-fluoride option, stores carry toothpastes and powders made with natural ingredients that don't have ADA testing and approval.

Restorative Dentistry

How do dental implants work?

Dental implants provide optimal support for a replacement tooth or teeth by mimicking the natural root structure and a successful root system does more than just provide nutrients for a living tooth. It also keeps the tooth steady and secure.

Like a natural root system, a dental implant is a small screw-like appliance that is inserted into the jawbone. Implants are built from surgical-grade titanium, and they are attached to a supporting post that keeps a crown or bridge held in place as needed. It is also possible to use multiple implants together to secure a complete set of removable or fixed dentures. The main advantage of using titanium dental implants is that they fuse with the natural jawbone material and prevents the bone loss that occurs with tooth loss.

Once the dental implant is placed, a dental crown is adhered to the support post, usually made out of titanium. This structure is now the new replacement tooth that look, feel and function just like natural teeth. And because they are anchored in the bone with strong supports, they are designed to last for decades.

How long does a dental implant process take?

The entire dental implant process can take months from start to finish. First, your dentist will need to evaluate the health and strength of the bone in the area where the missing tooth is. Often, when teeth are absent for too long, the blood and nutrient supply decreases, weakening the bone in the empty space where the tooth used to be. In these cases, a bone graft is required. This means that a tiny piece of healthy, strong bone from one area of the body is removed and place in the jaw where the implant will go. Time is then devoted to waiting for the bone graft to heal and stimulate new bone growth in your jaw. Once the jawbone is strong and ready to receive a dental implant, the placement procedure is scheduled. The actual procedure time may take just 1-2 hours.

Does dental implant surgery hurt?

At Glacier Peak Dentistry, we aim to make your dental visits and procedures as comfortable as possible. During a dental implant procedure, the nerves are numbed with medication so no pain is felt during the procedure. To help relieve general anxiety about the procedure we have other options such as oral conscious sedation or nitrous oxide, also known as “laughing gas”. At your initial consultation, we will discuss any and all options to help make your dental implant procedure go as smoothly as possible.

Mild swelling and discomfort may be present after the procedure but pain, if present, tends to be mild and short-lived depending on the number of implants placed. If pain persists or is more severe than expected, the team at Glacier Peak Dentistry wants to be notified as soon as possible so we can do what we can to ensure our patients’ comfort and health.

What is the recovery process for dental implants?

Recovery time from dental implant placement can vary depending on a variety of factors including:

  • The number of implants placed
  • Overall oral health and strength of the jawbone
  • Smoking history
  • Age
  • Other medical conditions such as diabetes

For single implant placement procedures with no bone grafting, swelling and discomfort are likely to be minimal and short-lived, likely just a few days. Most do well on a soft to liquid diet in order to minimize irritation and discomfort. After around a week to 10 days, you should be able to resume your regular diet or progress as tolerated but don’t worry, our team at Glacier Peak Dentistry will walk you through it all.

How do I care for my new implant?

Caring for your new dental implant is a breeze. They look, feel, and function just like natural teeth, and caring for them is very similar. Dental implants are designed to last but they will shine if they are brushed and flossed daily, ideally twice a day. A soft nylon toothbrush will also be gentle on the implant and be less abrasive than stiffer brushes that can damage the enamel of the artificial tooth. In addition to avoiding hard, stiff bristles, proper care of dental implants includes:

  • Using less abrasive kinds of toothpaste and mouthwashes such as those made for sensitive teeth
  • Avoid hard, sticky, or chewy foods such as ice, caramel, hard candies, and apples.
  • Avoid or at least minimize tobacco and alcohol use. Both contribute to poor healing, decreased bone density, and overall poor oral hygiene.