Lansing's Dental Discussion

Posts for: February, 2012

By The Office of Dr. Holly Scott- Hetchler
February 19, 2012
Category: Relaxation
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Laugh it Off: Ease Your Dental Fears with Nitrous Oxide

Being afraid of the dentist is normal, but your fears should never prevent you from receiving the care your teeth and gums deserve to prevent dental diseases and other oral health issues. There are a variety of stepsDr. Holly Scott-Hetchler can take to minimize anxiety and discomfort while you’re undergoing treatment in the her chair.

Start with open and honest communication with our office. Once we are aware of your concerns, she can tailor your treatment plan for optimal comfort. You should also find ways to distract yourself during an appointment.  Music players are great to help you take your mind off of the procedure at hand.

When these basic tips for easing your dental fears aren’t enough to relieve your misgivings, ask Dr. Scott-Hetchler about sedation dentistry.  Nitrous oxide (laughing gas) is the most commonly employed technique used in conscious sedation dentistry and has been used for many years by dentists to help patients feel relaxed and stress-free throughout treatment.


What is Nitrous Oxide?

Nitrous oxide is one of several sedation dentistry options available to significantly reduce your fears and discomfort.It’s safe and easy to administer, and often takes effect within minutes.

Laughing gas is most effective in the management of mild to moderate cases of dental anxiety. It is also a great method for people with severe gag reflexes.  Under the supervision of a sedation dentist, the patient remains conscious, responsive and able to breathe on his or her own, which is a major advantage of laughing gas.  In addition, a local anesthetic may be administered to reduce and control pain. Patients  often recover quickly following the procedure. Both the patient and the dentist benefit from the patient’s reduced fears.

Why Nitrous Oxide May Be a Good Option for You

If your dental fears get in the way of your oral health, you may be a candidate for nitrous oxide. There are many benefits of laughing gas, including:

  • Proven safe and effective for mild to moderate dental anxiety
  • Fast-acting with few side effects
  • Patient can return to normal activities almost immediately
  • Most dental work can be completed in one visit
  • In many cases the fully-recovered patient is permitted to leave the appointment unescorted


Don’t let your fears get in the way of your dental health. You have options. Talk to Dr. Scott-Hetchler in Lansing, MI about methods we use for easing nervous patients.  

By The Office of Dr. Holly Scott-Hetchler
February 07, 2012
Category: Dental Education
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Replace Missing Teeth with High Quality, Excellent Fitting Dentures

Missing teeth can make chewing difficult, cause problems speaking, and impact a person’s sense of self-esteem.  For these reasons, it is important to visit your dentist in Lansing about replacing your missing teeth with dentures.  Replacing missing teeth with dentures can be an important part of maintaining your dental health.  People who have lost all or most of their teeth, dentures may be the best tooth replacement option.  Whether you have lost all of your natural teeth from periodontal disease, tooth decay or injury, complete dentures can replace your missing teeth and your smile.  By replacing your missing teeth, it will benefit your appearance and your health. 

Dentures Replace Missing Teeth

For those who have lost all or most of their teeth, dentures may be the best replacement option.  Without the support from dentures, facial muscles sag, making a person look older than they are.  With dentures, you will be able to eat and speak properly – often things people take for granted until their natural teeth are lost.   There are two types of dentures – complete dentures and overdentures.

Complete dentures are used when you have no teeth remaining, or when your remaining teeth need to be removed.  They cover your upper and lower gums.  If you have teeth removed, your dentist can give you an immediate denture to wear for six to eight weeks, until your gums have healed and a conventional denture can be designed for you. 

Overdentures are removable dentures that can be used if you still have some remaining natural teeth, or have dental implants.  Overdentures should only be used if your remaining teeth or dental implants are able to provide adequate support.  Like dental bridges, dentures can help you to maintain your facial shape and your self-esteem.  If may take some time before you are able to chew and speak normally again, but these skills will improve with practice. 

If you are missing teeth, talk to your Lansing dentist about whether dentures may be an appropriate option for you or not.  Dentures are designed to be comfortable and functional, similar in appearance to natural teeth.  

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Holly A. Scott-Hetchler DDS, PC 919 Chester RdLansing, MI 48912