Welcome

The office of Dr. G. Shane Jessen offers a full scope of oral and maxillofacial surgery services including wisdom teeth extractions and dental implants. Using the latest techniques and state-of-the-art equipment, we provide a pleasant, warm, and caring environment. We study the latest techniques in oral surgery to provide you with the most advanced surgical care and diagnosis.

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Our Goal

Our goal is to make you feel comfortable and relaxed. We are here to listen to your questions and concerns and to help provide solutions leading to your better health. Please don’t hesitate to phone or e-mail us if you have any questions regarding your care.

3 Reasons You Shouldn’t Be Nervous About Dental Implant Surgery

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If simply going to the dentist gives people anxiety, then it makes sense that more serious oral surgery could cause full blown fear. But it doesn’t have to be that way! If you’ve been considering an oral surgery, or your dentist has recommended it, you may have been held back in part by nerves about an oral surgery. We’re here today to help you manage those nerves, and hopefully discard them entirely. We believe that oral surgery can be quick, effective, painless, and not scary at all.

Implant Surgery

Dental implants are a great solution for a tooth or root problem, because a titanium post is embedded into your jawbone and then a realistic and lifelike tooth is mounted onto the post. Over time, your bone will grow new cells to bind even tighter with the titanium post and create an incredibly strong connection. It’s an incredible answer to persistent teeth problems, though some people are a little scared of the idea of titanium being inserted into their jaw. It’s actually very routine, safe and effective. No reason to be scared!

  1. There isn’t a lot of guesswork in implant surgery. Your dentist will carefully x-ray the site and make a plan for how to create the channel and insert the titanium post. Because your dentist will know exactly what he or she is doing, the procedure is quick and efficient. There will not be extra cuts or healing – just the small area necessary.
  2. Your dentist will numb only the site of the implant, rather than putting you completely under or numbing your entire mouth. This means you won’t feel numb and weird and disoriented for an entire day. A small area will feel completely numb for the procedure, then return to feeling within a few hours. If you still have nerves, often your dentist can use another anti-anxiety measure or sedative solutions.
  3. The nature of an implant surgery is so planned and minor that there is very little damage or disruption to your tissue. Any stitches are self-absorbing, so you won’t experience pulling, itching, or removal of stitches. The pain is very minimal, and most patients are able to effectively use their favorite over-the-counter painkiller (ibuprofen, aspirin, etc.) to manage any discomfort which follows. The implant will heal very quickly and has a near 100% success rate, which means you don’t have to expect a long and painful recovery and weekly trips back to the dentist.

If you have tooth, gum, or root issues which are plaguing your oral health, consider dental implant surgery as a permanent and effective solution. Don’t let nerves about the procedure slow you down – it’s minor, safe, and comfortable. You’ll be smiling with confidence in no time!

Everything You Need to Know for Your Wisdom Teeth Removal

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Jessen Oral Surgery Wisdom Teeth Removal in Utah

When you have an impending wisdom teeth removal procedure, it is normal to become stressed and experience some anxiety. However, having the pesky molars removed is one of the most common oral surgeries in the United States. Prepping yourself for what to expect before and after your surgery can make the entire process easier and allow for a more comfortable and speedy recovery.

First of all, why do wisdom teeth need to be removed?

Before the time of advanced dentistry and orthodontics, humans were built with larger jaws and more powerful teeth that were needed for chewing and digesting food. Due to evolution and less of a need for such powerful back molars, the third set was pushed further back and now serve little to no function in the modern-day human’s mouth. Because of this, they can harbor diseases, cause lesions and cysts and damage other teeth if not monitored closely or removed.

How do I know whether to choose anesthesia or laughing gas?

When it comes to choosing your level of sedation for the procedure, it really is up to you. It all depends on your tolerance to being able to see, hear or sense the things that are happening around you. If you choose anesthesia, be aware that you will be groggier and less alert following the surgery but you will be completely unaware of the things happening while the surgeon performs the extraction. Laughing gas, on the other hand, packs less of a punch side effects-wise while also ensuring to keep you comfortable and pain-free. Unlike anesthesia, even once you’ve taken the laughing gas, you will be aware of the things happening in and around your mouth like the sound of the drill and the sensation of the vibration it causes (but you probably won’t care much).

Will I be swollen in the days following my wisdom teeth removal?

Unfortunately, swelling is usually part of the healing process. The peak window for the most swelling usually occurs 48-72 hours following the surgery but can be combatted with cool compresses and an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory.

What should I eat?

Most surgeons recommend sticking to a mostly liquid or soft food diet for the first four to five days following surgery. Ice cream, mashed potatoes, pudding, pasta and yogurt are all great options for a comfortable eating experience. Remember not to drink anything from a straw as the suction motion can loosen or rip your stitches, resulting in a dry socket.

Because wisdom tooth removal is a procedure that most people will have to undergo at some point in their life, it’s important to know the details of what to expect so you can prepare yourself. In addition to the above tips, remember to keep your teeth clean by brushing normally (but not vigorously!) in the days following your surgery and to bring up any concerns with your surgeon or dentist before or after your procedure.

Tongue Scrapers: Why You Need to Add One to Your Oral Care Arsenal

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Tongue Scraper Clinic By Jessen Oral Surgery in Ogden Utah

When you think of tongue scrapers, you probably don’t think of them as a crucial part of your oral care practice. However, using a tongue scraper can remove bacteria, leftover food, fungi, toxins and dead cells from the surface of your tongue. By doing so, you’re further promoting a healthy and germ-free mouth. Here are a few reasons investing in a tongue scraper is beneficial to your overall health:

Nobody Wants Bad Breath

While brushing, flossing and using mouthwash can all combat halitosis, it’s been proven that using a tongue scraper can significantly cut down on the amount of bacteria found on the tongue. Bacteria and germs are the leading cause of bad breath and can build up over night. Removing them with a simple scraping method ensures that you kick bad breath to the curb.

Everybody Wants to Taste Their Food Fully

Surprisingly, toxins that can build up on the tongue can actually block your taste buds. Aside from impairing your ability to taste certain flavors, they can also stop crucial digestive processes that start in the mouth.

They Boost Your Immune System

Because most germs and bacteria enter our system through our mouth, it is important that our tongue is healthy enough to fight them off before they are absorbed into our cells. A clean tongue will help prevent toxins from entering our systems and weakening our immunity.

Scraping Prevents Other Issues from Developing

Adding tongue scraping into your routine prevents certain dental problems from developing or worsening. Excess bacteria can cause plaque which in turn causes tooth decay, gum disease and gum recession. Removing the bacteria from your mouth ensures that periodontal problems stay at bay.

If you’re interested in adding scraping to your daily routine, simply purchase a tongue scraper from your local drug store or convenience store. Using the tool is easy and painless. Hold with two hands, place the scraper back on your tongue as far as is comfortable and use gentle pressure to move towards the front of the tongue. Rinse and repeat until your tongue looks and feels clean.

By simply adjusting your oral care routine to include a tongue scraper, you are taking one further step to ensuring that your teeth, gums and tongue are taken care of.

Perfecting Your Smile with Proper Tooth Care

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Jessen Oral Surgery Dental Care Tools

While overall tooth care may seem obvious to most people, it never hurts to learn from the professionals how to best care for your pearly whites and ensure they stay healthy and happy for years. Simply brushing twice a day isn’t always enough and practicing proper oral care can prevent cavities, gum diseases and even issues that could lead to a need for surgery in the future. Brush up on your tooth care practices with these simple steps:

Have the Right Tools for the Job

Toothbrushes, whether electric or the traditional kind, should be replaced every two months to prevent build up of bacteria and worn down bristles that inhibit cleaning functions. Purchase toothpaste that contains fluoride which acts as a barrier for germs. Always make sure you have your floss – any type with do but purchasing one with an attached handle or grip may make maneuvering in between teeth easier than having to wrap the ends around your fingers.

Learn Proper Brushing Techniques

While some may think that quickly brushing your teeth twice a day is suitable for tooth care, there are a few ways to make the two minutes spent on your teeth more effective. Hold your brush at a 45-degree angle and apply pressure until you can feel the bristles but aren’t aggressively scrubbing. Using a circular motion, scrub both the inner and outer surfaces of your teeth as well as your gums. Be sure to be thorough – and don’t forget to brush your tongue after polishing each tooth.

Make the Most of Flossing

If you don’t have floss with the built-in handle, simply wrap the strand around your pointer or middle fingers on each hand. Use a sawing motion to clean between all of your teeth, even the hard to reach molars in the back. If you haven’t flossed recently, you may experience some gum swelling or bleeding. Don’t panic – this is normal and will subside within a week of regular flossing.

End with a Fresh Rinse

Mouthwash is ideal for removing any bacteria, germs or micro-food that has been left behind or loosened by brushing and flossing.

Because tooth care is so vital to overall oral health, there is no such thing as being “too late” to start a proper brushing and flossing routine. Brush twice a day, after extra-sugary meals and make regular appointments with your dentist to maximize your tooth care and smile power!

Gum Disease Prevention and Treatment

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Gum Disease Prevention and Treatment Utah

In terms of oral health, gum disease – also known as periodontal disease – is one of the most common afflictions of your teeth and gums. While gum disease can cause anything form simple gum irritation to severe damage to the bone and tissue surrounding the teeth, it is important to know what causes it and how to prevent it.

What causes periodontal disease?

Bacteria and plaque are the most common causes of periodontal disease. Bacteria, when combined with the natural mucus of the mouth, forms a sticky, colorless “plaque” which sits on the surface of teeth and eventually eats away at the enamel. If this plaque is not removed by proper brushing techniques or professionally by a dentist, it can lead to tartar buildup and gingivitis. Gingivitis causes the gums to become inflamed and easily irritated by brushing and flossing. Gingivitis can be easily reversed and will not affect the bones of the teeth.

When does periodontitis become dangerous?

If left untreated, gingivitis and plaque buildup will advance to periodontal disease. Once it sets in, the pockets around the teeth become infected. Because our body’s natural immune system response is to attack the infection, bones in the mouth may be broken down in the process, which then loosens teeth and may require them to be removed.

What are the major risk factors for gum disease?

Smoking, hormonal changes, diabetes, changes in medications or genetics can all play a role in weakened gums and susceptibility to oral disease. Be wary of over the counter and prescription medications as both can have an effect on the strength and growth patterns of gum tissue. Smoking, on the other hand, not only creates weak gum tissue but can also prevent treatment from working properly.

How will I know if I have an infection in my gums?

Some of the major symptoms of gum disease are inflamed gums, trouble chewing, bleeding when eating, brushing or flossing, swollen gums and sensitive teeth.

How is periodontal disease treated?

In most cases, a hygienist or dentist performs deep cleaning and rinsing. However, in serious cases, surgery such as flap surgery and bone and tissue grafts may need to be performed to repair lost bone or weakened tooth pockets. In addition to cleaning and surgical treatments, a dentist may prescribe medications to control the infection and reduce the need for surgery.

If you suspect that you may be suffering from early stage gingivitis or gum disease, contact your dentist to schedule an appointment today. In advanced cases, you may be referred to an oral surgeon like Dr. Jessen.

Oral Surgery: How to Prepare for Your Procedure

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How to Prepare for Your Oral Surgery Procedure

Before any oral surgery, it’s important to make sure that you’re prepared both physically and mentally for the procedure and recovery. Most oral surgeries are performed with some form of anesthesia so it is best to have bulk of your questions answered prior to your surgery date. Here are a few suggestions to make sure that you’re ready, comfortable and prepped for your procedure.

What do I need to do the night before?

If you’re preparing to undergo oral surgery, chances are that you will be leaving your dentist’s office the same day you receive anesthesia so you’ll need some form of transportation back home. See if a friend or family member can drive you to your appointment as well as home again afterwards. Keep in mind that fasting is required prior to many surgeries. Check with your surgeon to see when you need to stop eating and drinking or what, if anything, you can have in the eight to twelve hours before surgery.

What can I expect during recovery?

Depending on your procedure, make sure that there will be someone at home to help you with care upon return from your surgery. Set your bed to a comfortable position in which you’re reclined and have pillows, remotes, tissues and reading material close by to cut down on the amount of times you have to get in or out of bed. Sucking motions can irritate mouth surgery sites so avoid drinking through straws or smoking post-op. If your mouth is sore, swollen or uncomfortable after surgery, try icing or rinsing it with warm salt water. Make sure your oral surgeon supports these options.

How much time do I need to heal and what do I eat in the meantime?

For the first couple days following surgery, try to eat foods that have high vitamin levels but are soft and easy to chew. Yogurt, soup and Jello are good options and easy on sore mouths. Be wary of extremely hot or extremely cold foods for the first 24 hours after your procedure. Generally, it takes 48 hours for major swelling and discomfort to subside. Allow yourself and your mouth enough time to heal before tackling hard or crunchy foods. Often times, wisdom teeth extractions can take longer to heal than other procedures.

Everyone knows that any kind of surgery, no matter how minor, can be nerve-wracking and stressful. Eliminate some of the major stress factors by consulting your dentist and oral surgeon prior to your appointment. Be patient with your healing process and don’t be afraid to ask for assistance from friends and family during the first few days of recovery. Prepare the night before your oral surgery to guarantee that you have a smooth, pain-less and worry-free oral surgery experience!

Getting Toothy: The Anatomy of Teeth

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Tooth AnatomyMany people say their most valuable asset is their white teeth and smile – but what are our teeth actually made of? What makes them shine, sparkle and sit straight in our mouths? Aside from providing a look into what make our teeth -well teeth – learning about the anatomy of a tooth can also help you better care for them and prevent diseases that could jeopardize your smile.

What makes up a tooth?

Each individual tooth is made up of several layers. The deepest layer, the pulp, is where your nerves and root canal lie. This is the soft and “living” layer. Encasing the pulp cavity is the dentin. Dentin is made up of cells that produce a hard, mineral substance to protect the pulp cavity. Surrounding the dentin is the tooth enamel. The enamel is primarily made up of calcium phosphate, which gives it the hard outer shell. The enamel surface can be stained or weakened by foods, acidic drinks or poor brushing and flossing habits.

How many teeth do I actually have?

Every adult should have 8 incisors, 4 canines, 8 premolars, 8 molars and 4 wisdom teeth. Your incisors are your middle teeth on the top and bottom. The canines are located directly next to your incisors. The premolars come before your molars and if you have room leftover, your wisdom teeth fill in behind your backmost molars. In some cases, people are born with fewer teeth.

How do they anchor into the jaw?

Our teeth are attached into our mouths by the shape of the external roots as they fit into the gums and extent into the jaw. The root, which contains the pulp cavity, flows directly into the gum line and then into the jaw where blood flow occurs.

What are the most common tooth conditions?

Cavities, tooth decay, periodontitis, gingivitis, plaque, tartar buildup, sensitivity, overbites, underbites and teeth grinding are the most common tooth ailments. While overbites, underbites and wisdom teeth growth patterns are controlled by genetics and jaw shape, the other conditions are often caused from poor oral hygiene and can be prevented with regular trips to the dentist for cleanings, proper brushing skills and frequent flossing.

In order to better care for your smile and oral health, it is important to understand the anatomy of your smile. Protect your pearly whites and avoid larger medical issues caused by poor dental hygiene by caring for your teeth. For more complex oral challenges such as wisdom teeth removal or implants, contact Jessen Oral Surgery.

Teeth Grinding: Silent Symptom of Stress

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Teeth grinding, which is sometimes a mystery even to those affected, is often caused by extreme stress and anxiety. Also called Bruxism, teeth grinding can cause several oral health complications ranging from tooth loss, jaw soreness, hearing loss and in severe Grinding teethcases, TMJ or Temporomanidibular Joint Syndrome.

What Causes Teeth Grinding?

For most, the cause of grating their teeth is stress or anxiety related and occurs while sleeping. In most cases, the person isn’t aware that they have the condition until someone hears the grating noise and reports it to them.

How Will I Know if I Grind My Teeth?

One of the most common ways to discover if you’re clenching or grating during the night is waking with a dull headache or a sore jaw. If you suspect that you may be afflicted, a trip to your dentist would allow them to examine your teeth for slight abnormalities or signs of jaw tenderness.

I Grind My Teeth! Help!

Some of the most common ways to stop your stress-induced habit is simply to reduce your anxiety through other activities. Start an exercise program, see a therapist or doctor to explore anti-anxiety medication options or meditation before turning in for the night. If none of this works for you, some suggest cutting out alcohol consumption, avoiding caffeinated foods and drinks, applying a warm washcloth to your jaw before bed to loosen and relax the muscles and avoiding chewing gum or other items like pens that may put extra stress on jaw or encourage the grinding behavior. If teeth grinding continues even after anti-stress measures are taken, talk to your dental professional about a quality mouth guard that can be worn while you sleep to prevent damage to your teeth.

What Can Happen in Extreme Cases Such as TMJ?

TMJ, which is fairly rare, is a serious condition that affects the jaw and the connection between the jawbone and the skull. While it can be treated with home remedies such as over-the-counter meds, stress reduction and massage, in extreme cases medical intervention is necessary. Dental splints, Botox and sometimes even dental and oral surgery on the jaw bones are the only fixes for those suffering from TMJ.

If you think you may be silently (or not so silently) releasing stress in the form of clenching or teeth grinding, start by targeting and reducing the cause of your stress to lessen the impact on your oral health and jaw and to prevent serious complications later.

Best Post-Wisdom Tooth Removal Treats

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Ice CreamWisdom teeth removal is nearly a rite of passage, and that means there are plenty of traditions to go with it. The (pretty new) requisite Chipmunk Cheek Selfie posted on Facebook is a must, if you’re a teen or college student you get a free pass to skip school, and then of course there are the soft, gooey and often icy cold treats. Forget the diet—if there was ever a time to indulge in all your ice cream, frozen yogurt and Jell-O laden fantasies, it’s after getting your wisdom teeth removed and your oral surgeon is fully supportive.

Of course, subsisting on a diet of pure frozen sugar isn’t a wise move, but a milkshake or two can drastically help with the discomfort following the surgery. As a side dish to your doctor recommended OTC painkiller, a few foods top oral surgeons’ charts as complementary to oral surgery. Make sure to get your grocery shopping done the day before your appointment so you can head straight home—and directly to the fridge—for some serious comfort foods.

For the Health Nut

Smoothies can be as healthy (or unhealthy) as you like. If you want to stick with your good eating habits, whipping up a green smoothie with broccoli, zucchinis and Granny Smith apples is a great option. You can also work with a bag of frozen mixed berries, a scoop of whey powder for your protein fix and a dash of coconut milk for thickener. Put your mixer or blender to good use, and get your spoon out. Avoid straws until approved by your oral surgeon as they can lead to complications in the first few days after surgery.
Homemade applesauce (or your favorite brand) is a staple wisdom tooth treat for a reason. It’s sweet, it’s healthy and you can choose exactly the temperature you prefer. Pair it with chocolate avocado mousse or your preferred mousse, Jell-O or pudding, and you’ve got the makings for sheer decadence.

Get Creative

Greek yogurt with honey (especially raw, local honey) is the perfect blend of delicious while staying healthy. However, if you’re more savory or salty-minded, you can always opt for creamy mashed potatoes with a non-chunky gravy. Roasted carrot soup hits the spot for some dental patients, while cheesy grits is a southern comfort that others crave. Go with a creamy polenta or the classic cream of wheat for a feel-good choice that’s both filling and kind to your mouth.

Hummus, baba ghanoush and cottage cheese are also big winners. Soft scrambled eggs hit the spot for some, while the classic ice cream from your beloved creamery is the go-to choice for others, and with good reason. Trust your mouth—and your gut—when making post-oral surgery selections for faster healing and minimal discomfort.

3 Signs of Jaw Misalignment

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Jaw SurgeryMouth pain comes and goes. But a misaligned jaw may be the cause if the pain won’t go away or causes you discomfort on a persistent basis. These bones that make your mouth open and close can be out of whack for various reasons. You may have been born that way, or the problem may be due to an accident or trauma. Routinely overusing the jaw to chew tough food or other foreign objects—such as pencils—also shifts the jaw from its correct position. Recognizing signs of the problem can help you decide if corrective jaw surgery is right for you.

Difficulty Chewing

Regardless of how the human smile appears, the top and bottom rows of front teeth aren’t meant to land on top of each other, especially not when chewing. You should have a slight overbite, which allows your teeth to chew comfortably but avoid impact. Unfortunately, a displaced jaw causes the rows of teeth to crash into each other, which makes chewing uncomfortable and sometimes painful.

Abnormal Breathing

Close your mouth to inhale, open it to exhale—that’s the normal breathing sequence. If your jaw isn’t aligned correctly, you may experience difficulty breathing this way. Those who suffer from the problem often inhale through the nose with the mouth open, a condition known as mouth breathing, according to MedlinePlus. A dentist or oral surgeon can examine your mouth to determine the cause of your breathing issues.

Abnormal Appearance

Every face has its quirks, but a trained oral health professional can examine your face and mouth to determine if a misaligned jaw is the reason for its abnormal appearance. Typically, you might have too many or too few teeth causing the misalignment, which results in an abnormal appearance. Children who use a pacifier for too long or suck their thumbs unchecked by caregivers also may experience jaw misalignment, according to MedlinePlus. Abnormal appearance also can be caused by chronic jaw pain—caused by misalignment—if you hold your face a certain way for prolonged periods of time for comfort.

The Fix

Surgery options to correct jaw alignment range, depending on reason and severity. Oral surgeons realign jaws routinely, so it’s a good idea to get a referral if you suspect jaw misalignment to be the cause of your oral pain, discomfort or awkward appearance.

Sources:

Medline Plus: Malocclusion of the Teeth

Cedars-Sinai: Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJD)