Covid-19 Update

April 24, 2020

We are excited to announce that we will re-open for dental care starting Wednesday, April 28th! Governor Polis announced that our state is transitioning from the “Stay at Home Order” to a “Safer at Home Order”. Earlier this week Larimer County also approved dental offices to re-open as long as pre-cautionary measure have been implemented. We have implemented their recommendations as well as our own procedures to keep everyone healthy. Our community has been through a lot over the last few months, and all of us are looking forward to resuming our normal habits and routines. While many things have changed, one thing has remained the same: our commitment to your health and safety! Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice and this is one area where we are constantly making improvements.  Besides our infection control procedures we have made several other office changes to keep you safe. We understand that some of you may want to delay or reschedule your appointments and we are happy to do this for you. Please give us a call and we will find a time that is convenient. With our additional safety procedures in place and your cooperation we feel that we can provide great care in a safe environment.

 Firstly, how we schedule patients has changed. We are staggering the schedule to limit the number of people in the office as well as to promote social distancing. Of the 5 treatment rooms we have, we are currently only using 3 to increase the distance between everyone. In the reception area we have spaced our chairs out, leaving 6 feet between them. You may notice that this area will no longer have magazines, coffee, or bottled water since these items are difficult to clean and disinfect. When checking out we have taped blue squares on the carpet letting everyone know where to stand. This will help keep both other patients and employees a safe distance apart. In between appointments we are using hospital grade disinfectant to clean all surfaces in both our treatment rooms as well as in the front office, bathrooms and reception area, and these areas are being disinfected on the hour.  

Treating TMJ Disorder

Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders affect over 10 million Americans. When left untreated, joint disorders can cause oral health issues including tooth damage and tooth loss. Dr. Andy Maples works with joint specialists to determine the cause of your disorder and design a custom TMJ treatment plan. Treatments for joint disorders range from custom mouthguards to jaw surgery. During your consultation at our Loveland, CO, dental practice, we will review your symptoms and recommend a solution that can provide the relief you need.

Do You Have a TMJ Disorder? 

Although the exact cause of TMJ disorders is unknown, there are several factors that can increase your risk of developing a condition, including: 

  • Joint, jaw, or muscle injury 
  • Arthritis 
  • Excessive teeth grinding (bruxism) 
  • Misalignment 

The most common symptoms of TMJ disorder include: 

  • Popping or grinding noises when you open or close your mouth 
  • Difficulty opening your mouth wide 
  • Pain when eating 
  • Facial swelling 
  • Tinnitus (ringing in the ears) 
  • Excessively worn or loose teeth 
  • Frequent headaches 

A proper diagnosis is essential in order to achieve relief from these painful symptoms. 

Diagnosing Your Condition 

During your dental exam, Dr. Maples will conduct a few tests to assess the health of your joints. He will also ask you about your symptoms and review your medical history. 

In some cases, diagnosing your condition is a team effort. In order to find out what is triggering your TMJ pain, Dr. Maples may refer your case to a joint specialist who can determine the cause of your symptoms. For many patients, malocclusion or other anatomical abnormalities are the cause.

Studies have found that mouthguards can be effective for treating a TMJ disorder in its earliest stages. 

custom mouthguard
A custom mouthguard can relieve strain on the TMJs and reduce painful symptoms.

Treatments 

Based on his findings, Dr. Maples may recommend treating your condition with: 

Mouthguards 

Dr. Maples can create a custom mouthguard for you to wear on a nightly basis. This guard will reposition the lower mandible to decrease the amount of strain on your TMJs. For patients who grind their teeth at night, the mouthguard also acts as a protective barrier between your upper and lower arches to prevent additional fractures or tooth loss. Studies have found that mouthguards can be effective for treating a TMJ disorder in its earliest stages

Restorative Dental Treatment 

In some cases, damaged teeth can create a misaligned bite and intensify the symptoms of a TMJ disorder. Dr. Maples can design and create custom dental crowns that restore balance and alignment to your smile. In addition to strengthening a weak or damaged tooth, dental crowns can help improve the cosmetics of your smile. 

Orthodontics 

If malocclusion is to blame for your jaw pain, Dr. Maples may refer you out to an orthodontic specialist. By realigning your smile, braces can help reduce the painful symptoms of TMJ disorders. 

Surgical Treatment 

In severe cases, surgery may be the only effective way to treat your symptoms. 

Book a Consultation Today 

Dr. Maples can evaluate your symptoms and help you overcome the often debilitating symptoms of a TMJ disorder. To schedule a consultation, call our practice at (970) 669-1444 or message us online

Our team

West Lake Dental

At West Lake Dental in Loveland, CO, Andy Maples, DDS, and his team provide excellent dental care to patients of all ages. Whether your dental needs are routine or advanced, we can serve you at our comfortable, inviting office. Dr. Maples is affiliated with several professional organizations, including:

  • The American Dental Association
  • The Colorado Dental Association
  • The International Congress of Oral Implantology
  • The Misch International Implant Institute

We invite you to schedule an appointment today by contacting us online or calling (970) 669-1444.

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Loveland Office

2502 Abarr Dr
Loveland, CO 80538

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