My Blog

By Laurie Mulka, D.D.S.
September 18, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures

Dental implants are the modern, effective way to replace missing teeth. A true artificial tooth in every sense, an implant resides in the jaw bone, strengthening it and providing superior anchorage for a metal extension post and porcelain crown. Dr. Laurie Mulka places dentalDental Implant implants and innovative mini-implants in qualified patients right at her office in Redford. These prosthetics are just another way Mulka Dental keeps patients healthy and smiling.

Details on the dental implant

The dental implant differs from traditional bridgework and dentures in several ways:

  1. Dr. Mulka inserts the implant right into the jaw bone. Conventional tooth replacements simply set on top of the gums and are anchored by clasps, crowns or the natural suction of the mouth (in the case of full dentures).
  2. Dental implants are made from titanium, a metal which attracts and bonds with human bone. This bonding process, called osseointegration, takes many weeks to achieve, but when complete, it creates a strong bond between the prosthetic and the bone.
  3. Traditional tooth replacements last about a decade, says the Institute for Dental Implant Awareness. However, dental implants last for 40 or 50 years--in other words, a lifetime for most patients.
  4. Dental implants improve jaw bone size and density. Conventional bridges and dentures do not. In fact, they tend to wear down the teeth which anchor them.
  5. Dental implants cost more than other tooth replacements. However, failure rate for implants is low, particularly when patients keep them clean (through brushing, flossing and professional cleanings), have strong underlying bone and do not smoke.

The mini-implant
Dr. Mulka also places innovative mini-implants. Smaller in length and diameter than traditional implant devices, the mini-implant anchors full and partial dentures and bridges. Because it is a smaller device, the patient requires less bone for successful placement and retention.
The painless process
To determine your candidacy for a dental implant procedure, Dr. Mulka will do a complete oral examination and take X-rays to ensure you have adequate bone in your jaw. (If the jaw is weak due to long-time tooth loss or osteoporosis, the dentist may use donor tissue or other processes to augment the bone.)
If all is well, Dr. Mulka will use locally injected pain medication to numb the area and then create an access hole in the jaw bone. She'll insert the implant into the bone and suture the gums closed. Osseointegration begins right away and continues for many weeks. On your return visit, she'll reopen the gums and bond on the metal alloy post and customized porcelain crown.
Placement of mini-implants is quicker. In fact, Dr. Mulka can insert these small devices and snap-on your full or partial denture in just one visit. Amazing!
Learn more
The staff at Mulka Dental invite you to explore the possibilities presented by innovative dental implant technology. Call the office today for your one-on-one consultation with Dr. Mulka: (248) 482-7020.

By Laurie Mulka, D.D.S.
July 26, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: root canal  

Root CanalIt’s important to know the warning signs that you might need immediate dental treatment.

Waking up in the middle of the night is no fun, particularly if it’s because you have a toothache. A toothache is certainly not something to fool around with; the sooner you seek dental care from our Livonia, MI, cosmetic dentist, Dr. Laurie Mulka, the better. Of course, you may be wondering what’s going on to cause you pain and whether or not it warrants a root canal. Let’s find out!

The number one warning sign that something is wrong with your oral health is a toothache. In most cases, the toothache may come about suddenly. The pain may be dull and achy or throbbing and intense. No matter how mild the pain, you need to see our Livonia emergency dentist for treatment as soon as possible. After all, a toothache is considered a dental emergency that requires immediate care to prevent the problem from getting worse.

While a toothache doesn’t necessarily mean that you will need a root canal it’s the number one sign. This is because the outside of the tooth (known as the enamel and dentin layers) does not contain nerves, so it won’t cause pain; however, if decay or an infection has broken through those hard layers and reached the inside of the tooth it will affect the dental pulp, the soft-tissue structure within the tooth that does contain nerves.

Once the pulp is inflamed or infected it will need to be removed during root canal treatment to prevent the bacteria from spreading into the jawbone or neighboring teeth. If you leave the infected tooth untreated it will eventually affect the overall integrity of the tooth and require your dentist to extract it. To prevent tooth loss it’s important that if you require root canal therapy that you get it as soon as possible to avoid complications.

Another warning sign is sudden tooth sensitivity, particularly to hot or cold. If a tooth suddenly hurts whenever you drink that steaming cup of coffee or guzzle that glass of ice water then you might just need a root canal. Of course, your gums surrounding the affected tooth may also protest, causing redness, tenderness, and swelling. In some instances, an abscess may form on the gums. An abscess looks like a pimple and it’s a telltale sign of an infection.

If you are in pain let us help treat the problem and get rid of your discomfort. Why suffer when you don’t have to? Our expert dental team here in Livonia, MI, is here to handle all of your dental needs and concerns, whether routine or urgent. Call Mulka Dental today.

By Laurie Mulka, D.D.S.
June 12, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures

The American College of Prosthodontists estimate that approximately 15 percent of Americans missing teeth wear a denture device, and in denturesmany cases you wouldn’t even know it. Modern dentures are more natural-looking and customized for individual patients. They can give you peace of mind as you’ll know that your smile is, once again, complete, attractive, and functional. Understand the similarities and differences between specialty and partial dentures, both of which can be created for you by Dr. Laurie Mulka at Mulka Dental in Livonia, MI, and serving the Redford area.

About Dentures
Dentures are a cosmetic treatment used by dentists to fill in unwanted spaces caused by tooth loss. They are very common due to the fact that 120 million Americans are missing at least one tooth according to the American College of Prosthodontists. Some denture devices use a tight-fitting suction action to hide whole rows of missing teeth, while others use metal clasps to attach a replacement tooth to the open space. They last for five years or longer and may need adjustments over time to assure a snug, comfortable fit.

Partial and Specialty Dentures
A partial or specialty denture is created to replace one or more missing teeth along the gumline. The space is measured using a dental mold by your Livonia and Redford dentist so that a customized device can be formed. The tooth is connected to a metal framework called precision attachments that uses healthy adjacent teeth for support. It is attached to gum-colored plastic. It’s designed so that once it is in place, the metal is barely visible. Some modern partials can be created without precision attachments.

Denture Maintenance
It may take some time for you to get used to your new partial or specialty denture. You’ll soon be comfortable eating, talking, and socializing while wearing it. Before you go to bed, remove them and gently brush them to remove any film or particles, then soak them in a solution recommended by your dentist. The better you care for the specialty denture, the longer it will be before you need it replaced or adjusted. 

Explore All Your Denture Options
Dentures have helped countless patients restore their missing teeth. Talk to a dentist at Mulka Dental in Livonia, MI, and also serving patients in Redford, to learn more about specialty and partial dentures. Call 248-482-7020 today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Laurie Mulka.

By Laurie Mulka, D.D.S.
March 22, 2018
Category: Oral Health
Tags: family dentistry  

Does your busy schedule leave you and your family without much time to spare? If so, you may find that scheduling your appointments family dentistwith doctors or dentists is a difficult task. However, a family dentist can help you simplify your schedule and ease the burden of a busy family life. Consolidate your dental appointments and save time and effort with your Livonia, MI family dentist, Dr. Laurie Mulka at Mulka Dental.

What is a family dentist? 
While other dentists specialize in performing only cosmetic dentistry procedures or only tending to the needs of adults over 18, family dentists perform a variety of procedures on patients of all ages, including babies and children. Family dentists also see elderly individuals. Like general dentistry, family dentistry focuses on educating patients on good oral health, upkeep of the teeth via dental cleanings, and regular dental examinations to find and treat issues like cavities at their earliest stages in order to avoid more invasive, complex procedures.

How can a family dentist benefit me and my family? 
A family dentist will treat anyone from your infant getting their first teeth to your child in the midst of losing baby teeth to your grandmother who needs a dental implant to replace a missing tooth. This means you can consolidate your appointments, scheduling them on the someday to save yourself time, extra trips, and even money. Family dentists allow your children to form a good relationship with their dentist as they grow older, even staying with the practice as adults. Additionally, family dentists keep your whole family’s dental records in one place, making them easily accessible in times of need.

Regular Dental Examinations and Cleanings with Your Family Dentist in Livonia, MI 
The American Dental Association recommends seeing your dentist at least twice a year for regular dental exams and cleanings. These appointments help your dentist find and treat cavities and other issues early to avoid invasive procedures or tooth extraction. Additionally, regular cleanings make keeping your teeth healthy between dental visits easy. Simply brush twice a day and floss once to keep teeth decay and gum disease at bay.

For more information on family dentistry and how it can help you, please contact Dr. Mulka at Mulka Dental in Livonia, MI. Call (248) 482-7020 to schedule you or your family member’s appointment today!

By Laurie Mulka, D.D.S.
January 24, 2018
Category: Oral Health

Preventive care is the best route to a healthy smile. In other words, keep ahead of potential dental and gingival (gum) issues before they preventative dentistryeven start. At Mulka Dental, your Redford area family dentist in Livonia, MI, and her dedicated staff work hard to provide families with the at-home skills and in-office treatments which promote durable bright smiles that last. Here's the preventive protocol which Dr. Laurie Mulka advises her patients use faithfully.

Preventive care targets plaque

The American Dental Association (ADA) advises that children through senior adults (and everyone in between) brush their teeth carefully twice a day with a soft brush and fluoride toothpaste (over the age of three). Take your time, and spend at least two minutes at the sink, thoroughly, but gently, brushing all tooth surfaces. Mom and Dad, please supervise young children to ensure the best possible results.

Additionally, the ADA says daily flossing removes the plaque, or sticky food residues, missing by brushing alone. Plaque contains oral bacteria which secrete acids which decay tooth enamel and cause destructive gum disease, a major cause of tooth loss. It's also a precursor to many systemic health issues such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and dementia.

Plus, your six-month visits to Mulka Dental add professional skill to your at-home hygiene. Your hygienist scales your teeth and gum line to remove additional plaque and hard tartar.

Preventive care includes regular examinations

After your thorough cleaning, your Redford area family dentist examines your teeth and gums to assess for:

  • Cavities
  • Gum disease (including periodontal probing, a measure of gum pocket depth)
  • The condition of fillings and other restorations
  • Oral cancer (detected early, cure rates are between 80 and 90 percent, says the Oral Cancer Foundation)
  • Proper bite and alignment
  • Aesthetic smile needs

She may recommend fluoride treatments to strengthen tooth enamel and to reduce dental sensitivity. Plastic sealants, applied to deeply grooved chewing surfaces, protect children's teeth against decay for about ten years. Both services are inexpensive and great insurance against tooth decay.

Preventive care stresses common sense

Your Redford area family dentist teaches some dental care strategies that are easy for everyone to use regularly. They include:

  1. Drinking several glasses of water a day to avoid dry mouth and to cleanse teeth and gums.
  2. Stopping smoking or chewing tobacco (to prevent oral cancer, dental staining, gum disease and toxic systemic effects).
  3. Consuming a low-sugar/carb diet, high in fiber, protein, and calcium.
  4. Wearing a custom-made mouth guard (available in both hard and soft materials) to protect against sports injuries and teeth grinding (bruxism).

Learn more

At Mulka Dental, Dr. Mulka and her team want to preserve your best-looking and best-functioning smile. Why not contact the office in Livonia, MI today to schedule your routine exam and hygienic cleaning? Call (248) 482-7020.





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