Adult Teeth = Adult Dentist

By Dr. Elizabeth Eggert

As many of you know, we are happy to see children of all ages at Eggert Family Dentistry and successfully do so every day. Yet, we understand how some parents may feel that the environment of a pediatric dental office might suit their child best initially. However, when children start getting their adult teeth, around age 6, it’s time to see your family dental team who has experience in caring for those adult teeth. Adult teeth are more susceptible to plaque and calculus, which lead to cavities and gum disease, if not removed completely. Special care needs to be taken to clean the teeth thoroughly of this bacteria. Our hygienists have extensive training in removing calculus and plaque from teeth and are also trained to remove the bacteria that surround orthodontic braces. Failure to pay special attention to these areas can result in permanent damage to the adult teeth, including noticeable white spots, or cavities that form around the brackets.

A routine visit for your child in our office is spent with one of our licensed dental hygienists April or Joanna and Dr. Elizabeth or Dr. Jeff. Our hygienist will first review with you your child’s past dental and medical history. They will then take a series of bitewing x-rays once each year to check for cavities and development. Our hygienist will clean your child’s teeth, removing calculus, plaque, and food debris. Our hygienist will apply fluoride to your child’s teeth once each year to help prevent cavities. An oral cancer screening is also performed on your child along with a caries risk assessment where we will discuss healthy habits for oral health with you and your child. Dr. Elizabeth or Dr. Jeff will complete the exam and suggest the best practices in maintaining good oral health. Your child will leave with a new toothbrush, dental floss, and tooth paste to help them practice their healthy habits at home!

Our caring staff makes your children feel right at home during their visit. We explain the procedures throughout the visit while educating children on proper hygiene habits and the importance of eating a healthy diet. Children can watch age appropriate television shows and movies both in the waiting and hygiene rooms. We also have a selection of reading and coloring books, games, and other toys for children to enjoy. We offer children comfort items while they are in the chair to make their visit enjoyable, including sun glasses for the light, a variety of flavors of polish and toothpaste, and headphones to wear to listen to the television. At the end of their visit, children love choosing a reward from the prize box!


As a small office we can take the time to really focus on your child. Many pediatric dental offices see multiple patients at a time and do not always have the same luxury. A thorough exam paired with x-rays taken consistently every year is our best tool for detecting decay so we can treat and change habits early.

Why are we so passionate about seeing your whole family, including your children? Unfortunately, we have seen many young adults, who have been seeing their pediatric dentist on a somewhat regular basis for years where we note significant decay on multiple teeth at their initial exam in our office. By the time we see some of these patients in our office, the teeth need more than just a filling and these young adults and even children have to experience root canals and even extractions at a very young age. With the advanced technology we employ at Eggert Family Dentistry, we are able to catch decay often before it advances, keeping necessary treatment to a minimum.

As always, we are excited to meet more members of your family. Summer is a perfect time to get your kids scheduled. Call us today 651-482-8412!

What is Occlusal and Splint Therapy?

By: Dr. Elizabeth Eggert

What is Occlusal and Splint Therapy?

Habitual clenching or grinding of your teeth can cause a variety problems with your jaws and teeth. It can over work facial muscles and cause pain and can overstress your teeth. This can cause pain in periodontal ligaments and wear of tooth structure. In extreme cases, you can break or crack teeth by forceful and repetitive clenching and grinding. Clenching and grinding can also overstress and cause pain and damage to the temporomandibular joint (TMJ).

Clenching and grinding can occur during the day or at night and most people are not aware of this habit. Problems come to light during the dental exam when we notice tooth wear or highly developed jaw muscles.

The purpose of splint therapy is to change the position of your jaw to a relaxed muscle position. In an ideal situation the teeth can be changed to fit together at the same position where the jaw is relaxed.

Do I need splint therapy?

A common reason for prescribing an occlusal splint is to protect the teeth from excessive wear. However, splints can also help reduce or eliminate headaches, cervical, neck and facial pain, or even earaches or ringing in the ears.

What can I expect from splint therapy?

Our patients have experienced dramatic changes due to splint therapy. Often, headaches disappear and muscle tensions go away. Chewing becomes easier and your jaw will probably stop making noises.

Tara J. said, “I now have less headaches, less jaw pain and it was beneficial. I would tell a friend to do the therapy!”


Splint therapy can involve the wearing of one splint or a sequence of splints and may include some of the following devices:

Lucia Jig

  • This small device is used as the first step in diagnosing if functional disharmony is due to the joint or the muscles and is made right in our office.

Anterior Deprogrammer

  • During splint therapy, an acrylic appliance is worn at all times to create the best possible function between the natural position of the jaw, muscles, and your teeth as they work with one another. The anterior deprogrammer, a partial splint, is used for muscle therapy.

TMJ Splint

  • The TMJ splint covers all the teeth of one arch and better addresses joint issues. It is also worn 24/7.


Upon successful completion of splint therapy (once the muscles and jaw joints are stable), teeth may fit together differently. There are three common methods, sometimes used in conjunction with each other, to realign the teeth into a more comfortable position:


  • Equilibration creates a solid bite by adjusting the alignment of the upper and lower teeth and by altering the chewing surfaces of some or all the teeth to remove interferences. This creates harmony among the jaw joints, muscles, and teeth as the joints and muscles are placed in a relaxed position and the teeth come together at the same time.


  • Tooth movement is performed by an orthodontist, who understands jaw joint and muscle function.


  • Full mouth restorations can be used to bring teeth perfectly together at the relaxed joint and muscle position.

Are occlusal and splint therapy right for you? There’s no need to suffer any longer, please give us a call today at 651-482-8412 to schedule a consultation. We can help tailor a program that’s right for you!