Dr. Paul Milo Covers Maternity Leave at Sturgeon Bay Practice

Dr. Gina Grenfell, owner and primary care dentist at our Sturgeon Bay location, is due to deliver her third child at the beginning of October.  While she is on maternity leave we are pleased to announce that Dr. Paul Milo will be joining our team as the interim dentist.

Dr. Milo is a graduate of Purdue University and obtained his dental degree from Indiana University School of Dentistry. He grew up in Hammond, Indiana and has been a resident of Munster, Indiana for the past 30 years. Dr. Feit will also be in the office on a part-time basis providing care during this time, as well as Dr. John Sledge from the Sister Bay office. 

Dr. Gina will be back to work on a regular basis starting at the beginning of 2019. and plans to also be in the office a few days in December. If you have an appointment while Dr. Gina is on leave please know you are in great hands with the team of dentists that will be filling in for her.

Open House To Meet New Sister Bay Owner

Introducing Dr. John Sledge, the new owner and primary dentist at Dentistry by Design Sister Bay!

Dr. Sledge recently purchased the Sister Bay practice from Dr. Paul Feit who had owned it since 2012.  The practice will continue to be named Dentistry by Design and the support staff that patients have come to know over the years will be staying on board with Dr. Sledge. Dr. Feit will also continue on in a part-time capacity. 

Dr. Sledge and his wife Cora would like to invite the community to an ‘Open House’ on Tuesday, September 25th from 5:30-7:00 p.m. at the Sister Bay practice located at 2645 Bay Shore Drive.  During this time visitors will be able to meet Dr. Sledge and his wife, who have made Sister Bay their home, peruse the facility and enjoy light hors d’oeuvres. 

“My wife and I are excited to set down roots and become a part of this great community!  We are looking forward to exploring the Peninsula more as full-time residents and enjoying the great restaurants, theaters and outdoor activities it has to offer.  We hope to forge long lasting relationships through the practice and also through our involvement in the community.” – Dr. Sledge.

Dr. Sledge hails from a small town in Southern Louisiana and graduated from Louisiana State University School of Dentistry.  In his 11 years of experience, he has worked in both public and private practice.  He most recently worked helping the underserved children of Green Bay while employed by the Oral Health Partnership.  

Dr. Paul Feit remains owner of both Dentistry by Design in Sturgeon Bay, which he co-owns with Dr. Gina Grenfell, and also Algoma. 

What Type Of Dental X-rays Will I Need And How Often?

Recently we had a new patient mention that they enjoyed our dental practice and the service they received, but felt like we took more x-rays and intraoral pictures then they had in the past. This got us thinking that may be other patients share this feeling, so we felt it was important to take some time to explain why we do what we do.

As trained dental professionals we know how essential x-rays and intraoral pictures are to making an educated diagnosis. Through x-rays we can see your bone, roots, in-between the teeth and also detect any possible abnormalities such as oral cancers or blocked arteries depending on the x-ray we take. In order to know what is going on in areas we can’t see with the human eye we need these images to best serve the needs of our patients.   

So what type of x-rays can you expect to receive at Dentistry by Design and how often? That depends on if you are a current or new patient. We follow the ADA recommendations for x-rays and as an existing patient at our Sturgeon Bay, Sister Bay or Algoma practice it is recommended to have the following.

Bitewings are taken yearly and are the small tabs that you bite on that holds the x-ray film in place.  These x-rays help us see between the teeth and catch possible issues in areas that may not be detected by a general oral exam.

FMX, otherwise known as a full mouth series, is also a type of x-ray you can expect to receive every 5 years depending on the patient.  An FMX consists of 18 different pictures of your teeth achieved by biting down on films that are placed inside your mouth similar to the bitewings.

Panorex (Pan), which is a Panoramic x-ray, is also done every 5 years depending on the patient.  This involves biting down on a straw-like appliance while a scanner rotates around your head taking one image.  Should you need to see us for a dental emergency it is our protocol to take another Pan of the affected area to identify the source of the problem, but this is case specific.

In some cases we will also take pictures of your teeth with our intraoral camera.  This is a tool that our dentist can maneuver inside your mouth to get different angled images of your teeth and gums. These images are displayed during an appointment on a monitor screen in either the exam room or consult room for our patients to see.  This comes in extra helpful when showing a crack in a tooth or separation between a filling and tooth.  It is also helpful to show before and after’s of restoration procedures like changing out a metal amalgam filling to composite resin filling (tooth colored).

For new patients x-rays can be transferred upon their request from a previous dentist to our office. If they are good quality and have been taken in the past 5 years, chances are we won’t need to take them again. However, if we feel they aren’t the quality we need we will take new ones to get a clear picture of the current state of your oral health.  For new patients that require updated imaging, they will receive an FMX and a Pan as part of our new patient special and going forward be under the recommendations listed above as a Dentistry by Design patient.

When talking about x-rays people understandably want to know how much radiation they will be subjected to.  To give you an idea, according to the American Dental Association, a FMX full mouth series is equivalent to a couple days of environmental radiation exposure. To reduce exposure even more we use a lead apron and sometimes a lead thyroid collar. A great resource on this can be found on the ADA website https://www.ada.org/en/member-center/oral-health-topics/x-rays .

We hope this article provides clarity on the use of x-rays at our Dentistry by Design practices. Remember not everyone’s needs are the same when it comes to your oral health so x-ray frequency, recall frequency, and the like, may differ. 

Dr. Feit Visits Haiti To Help Set-up Permanent Dental Clinic

Dr. Paul Feit recently returned from a 9 day trip to Los Cacaos, Haiti where he and other missionaries worked to set-up and provide dental care at the areas first permanent dental clinic. Dr. Feit, Dr. Chris Hansen of Two Rivers Family Dental, three members of his practice, and other local missionaries partnered with the Catholic Foundation for the Diocese of Green Bay, Sister Maria Marciano Projects to set-up operations in the remote region of central Haiti. 

           Dental clinic in Los Cacaos, Haiti.

On their inaugural visit they were able to finish setting up the dental clinic, stocking it with over 650 pounds of supplies. These supplies were provided by each of the two practices with the help of New Franken based Dental Health Products. Preferred Dental Services generously donated used dental equipment to the project which allowed missionaries to set up three operatories in Los Cacaos.

              Dr. Paul Feit providing patient care.

           Dr. Chris Hansen evaluating a patient.

Dr. Hansen, a Dental Hygienist and two Assistants from his practice, Dr. Feit and six other Wisconsin missionaries were able to provide dental care for over 300 locals who showed no evidence of having previous dental work prior to their visit. Due to rugged terrain and lack of infrastructure, residents in the area have little access to medical and dental care, in fact there is typically only one dentist per one hundred thousand people. It is their goal to set-up recurring trips, two times per year, to Los Cacaos with other dental professionals who want to become involved.

                      Dental clinic waiting room.

Not only are they hoping other area dental professionals will consider joining future missions, they are also encouraging donations to the Catholic Foundation for the Diocese of Green Bay, Sister Maria Marciano Projects. Tax deductible donations help continue the work going on in Los Cacaos that extends beyond dentistry. In 2010 after the earthquake in Haiti, Sister Maria, a Brazilian, Catholic nun who began her charitable work in the Dominican Republic, expanded her efforts into neighboring Los Cacaos, Haiti. Educated in Brazil with degrees in Civil Engineering, Hydrology Engineering, Agronomy, Veterinary Science, Economics and Business Administration she has spearheaded projects such as building schools, creating road ways, and water projects to help deliver clean drinking water to locals. She has had the help of many Wisconsin missionaries over the years to accomplish these much needed projects.

        Missionaries with Sister Maria (Center).

For more information on the Catholic Foundation for the Diocese of Green Bay, Sister Maria Maciano Projects and how you can help, visit www.sistermariahaiti.com.

What Does Proactive Dentistry Mean Anyway?

If you are a patient at either our Sturgeon Bay, Sister Bay or Algoma practice, you may have heard us refer to our type of dentistry as ‘proactive dentistry’, well what does that really mean anyway?  For us it means honestly addressing potential issues before they become painful and problematic.  Getting to the root of the problem and taking care of it in the best way possible for long-term success.  Yes, many times this puts the expense on the front end, but in the long run it saves you from being in pain, spending more money than you need to and more time in the dentist chair than you should. It’s definitely a different way of approaching your dental care.

Let’s put it into perspective. If you come into our office for an appointment and we notice that you have some separation between your tooth and its filling, we see it as our responsibility to inform you of this and make a plan of action to correct it, even if it is not causing you pain or discomfort at the moment.  By replacing the filling when the problem is found, you remove the opportunity for bacteria to slowly creep into the opening over time and cause infection.  Once infection has set in the procedures to correct the problem are more in-depth and costly then doing a replacement filling when the separation was first noticed.

 Cycle of Dental Neglect Dentistry By Design Door County Dentist(Infographic courtesy of Smiles in the Gardens)

Often we have patients come to us and say “Well, why didn’t my previous dentist see that?” To be honest, there are many factors for this. Did it happen in the time since you were last seen by a dentist?  Do they use an inter-oral camera that can see what is hard for the human eye to see?  Was your dentist keeping an eye on the issue in an effort to save you money at the time? Dentists have different beliefs when it comes to diagnosing and suggesting treatment, it doesn’t mean one is better than the other, patients just need to be on the same page with their provider.

At our practices we feel it is essential to long-term oral health to be proactive as opposed to reactive.  It is our practice policy to tell you upfront what we see, give you a plan of attack and suggest steps to have it addressed.  Of course the next step is always up to our patients, but we are always going to passionately suggest doing what is best for your overall oral health.