“Visiting grandma and grandpa and seeing their teeth in a jar are kind of a way of the past,” says Dr. Angela Lueck of Riverwalk Dentistry in Downtown Milwaukee. “The majority of people today will not lose a tooth.” It’s a sign of dental progress, a testament to better care both at home and in the dental chair. But all is not yet white and sparkly in the realm of teeth.
Nearly half of adult Americans – some 65 million – have periodontal disease, chronic inflammation that affects the gum tissue and teeth-supporting bones, according to the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Untreated, it can lead to losing teeth. It’s also linked to cardiovascular disease and diabetes, among other ailments – even dementia.
And so, the dental advice you’ve heard all your life still applies. The best path to a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums is to start proper care early and stay with it. But for those who stray from that path, or simply never get on it, the consequences of years of neglect can be halted, reversed and repaired.
Herein you’ll find listings of more than 200 dental professionals in the Milwaukee area. Lueck is on the list, as are Dr. Michael Grady (Marquette University Dental School Faculty Practice), Dr. Eddie Morales (Premier Periodontics in Greenfield) and Dr. Matthew Smith (Stone Ridge Dental in Waukesha). Combined, the foursome has some six decades of experience in the field.
So we tapped their collective wisdom on a range of topics, asking questions about patient phobias, high-tech advances, even dental insurance. Their answers may surprise you.