St. Louis native Dr. Darren Cartwright and his staff keep cavities in check with preventative services such as exams and cleanings, as well as perform more complicated oral surgeries such as wisdom-tooth extraction. Like an M. Night Shyamalan movie, they take every step to make sure patients feel nothing, using sedatives and anesthesia to alleviate any pain and nitrous oxide to nullify anxieties related to dentist visits. They also boost patient confidence with cosmetic services such as teeth whitening and Invisalign braces, and they offer both morning and evening appointments to accommodate busy schedules.
Dr. Jacqueline Demko, who has worked on more than 500 Invisalign cases, oversees a team of enamel experts who discreetly arrange crooked teeth in handsome order with Invisalign, which combines highly advanced, 3-D computer graphics with the spells of old-fashioned orthodontia. The Invisalign process eschews cumbersome braces for clear, removable aligners that are virtually invisible to the unclothed eye. An initial 90- to 120-minute exam––which includes x-rays, photos, and impressions of mouth terrain––paves the way for a flurry of calibrated teeth sheaths that are designed to slowly shift walnut crackers into perfect alignment. Depending on the client’s teeth, as few as 12 or as many as 48 separate aligners will need to be worn during a period of 5–12 months before the straightening effect finally self-actuates in a sudden burst of pink smoke and slobber. Throughout the teeth-straightening journey, aligners are only removed when eating, brushing, flossing, or modeling a finely clenched jaw.
At Bogey Hills Dental, Dr. Brandon Pollard doesn't do things the old-fashioned way. Instead of the cold, clinical, and impersonal feeling one might expect from a dentist's office, Bogey Hills emanates quite the opposite vibe, greeting visitors with a homey waiting room outfitted with a flat-screen TV and a Nintendo Wii. Each treatment room has also been upgraded to include all the bells and whistles modern dentistry has to offer, including new computers, digital x-ray equipment, intraoral cameras, and noise-cancelling headphones to drown out the sound of any dental procedures.
Boain Dental Care boasts not one, not two, but three Drs. Boain. It's not the result of a cloning experiment; John, Jenn, and Joseph are three distinct teeth experts, and they point to credentials that include memberships in several professional dental organizations to underscore their readiness for their clients. When they're not going to great lengths to ensure guests are comfortable during exams, x-rays, and cleanings, the team engages in continuing education to keep up on the latest in dentistry. That kind of effort has helped the practice last 30 years, or, to put it another way, 30 orbits around the sun or 30 million episodes of the Today Show.
Dr. Kenneth Ausmer brightens smiles and puts patients at ease with gentle techniques and a friendly chair-side manner honed through years of dental care. During the new-patient oral exam, Dr. Ausmer inspects teeth for signs of decay and vestigial tusks, conditions best treated when caught early (an $80 value). Dr. Ausmer then charts teeth, probes gums for signs of periodontal disease, and gives treatment recommendations, if needed. A technician also takes panoramic and a bitewing x-rays (a $162 value), offering a look into the inner world of front and back choppers with digital x-rays that reduce radiation exposure by 90%. Finally, for eligible patients, an expert hygienist scours scrubby teeth in a 20- to 30-minute cleaning to remove graffiti left by rowdy tonsil gangs (an $80 value).
Dr. J. Richard Landgraf founded his practice in 1956. Since then, it has been taken over by his son, Dr. John Landgraf, who joins a skilled fleet of experienced hygienists to carry on his father's vision of helping patients care for and retain their teeth. Services running the gamut of general, cosmetic, and orthodontic care—such as implants and Zoom! teeth whitening—take place as patients are entranced by TV programs or hypnotic x-rays beaming from chairside monitors.