I’m in Pain or Have Discomfort
Are you experiencing dental pain or discomfort from a dental problem? We want to help. At Legacy Smiles, our goal is to make sure our patients are comfortable and happy with the care they receive – which means helping them eliminate pain as quickly as possible. Whatever the problem is, let us help solve it with restorative services from our Billings, MT dentist.
The Waterlase is kind of a cool concept. What it is is lasers generate heat, so cutting teeth with that much heat is generally not a good idea, but someone ingeniously created a laser where a focused beam of water comes out and then the laser focuses on that water and accelerates the water molecules. It's a hydrokinetic cut, meaning it will keep the tooth cool from the water but because of the accelerated water molecules, it will actually cut the tooth. We have a lot of years of experience with that laser now.
It will cut hard tissue, meaning teeth, and it will also cut soft tissue just by changing the settings. It's the one piece of equipment that the FDA has approved for actually cutting teeth and doing everything that we do with it. Of course we can change the settings on that and not use water if we need to do a biopsy or a frenectomy or something like that. We can totally change, we have total control of all those parameters.
The one aspect of it that enhances it even more is that in most cases, we don't have to give you anesthetic. That's really awesome because even when you do painless injections, it still leaves people numb, and they often don't like to be numb. When we can do, use the laser and not have to use any anesthetic whatsoever – wow, people walk out of here feeling like a million bucks because they got their procedure done. They were comfortable. It was quicker and they're out the door without any anesthetic and two or three hours of being numb.
Cavities are a problem that plague almost everyone. We use a tool called DIAGNOdent to catch even the smallest caries before they turn into larger issues. At our office, we offer completely metal free fillings, called composite fillings. These fillings are made from a tooth-colored material. Before placing a filling, we first remove the decay and prepare the tooth to receive the synthetic material. We then bond the composite filling to your tooth. These composite fillings are crafted to be long-lasting, durable, and easy on the eyes.
Crowns and Bridges
Receiving a crown or bridge is one of our most popular services. These time-tested restorations are used to repair a damaged tooth or replace one that has been lost or extracted.
A crown is something that treats a single tooth and it is usually made of gold or porcelain or some material, and it encompasses the tooth 360 degrees and reinforces that tooth. A filling requires significant healthy tooth structure to hold the filling in. The filling doesn't hold the tooth. The tooth holds the filling, so once the disease gets so big or an old filling is so large, we no longer have enough tooth left to put another filling in it.
That's where a crown comes in because a crown will literally come over the tooth, down around it, and fit down around it, and encompass it 360 degrees to strengthen it and reinforces it and restore all that tooth structure. That's why we do a crown.
A bridge is one of those procedures where we're missing a tooth, and what a bridge does is we go to either side of the gap. If there's a missing tooth here, we're going to look at the teeth on each side of that gap and we're going to prepare those teeth just like we do for a crown, but instead, what our laboratory is going to make for us is it's going to make a bridge designed to literally bridge that gap. When we get it back from the laboratory, it looks like three teeth all fused together, and it fits down over the two supporting teeth with the false one fused in the middle, and it's designed and shaped to look like it's just growing right out of your gums just like a natural tooth does. Bridges, for us, they're pretty quick. They're simple, and those two things, a bridge or a crown, whether we're treating a missing tooth or a single tooth, those things are permanent. They are cemented in there and not designed to come out and they are as close to rebuilding the natural tooth as we can get.
The process of installing a crown a quite simple. Like fillings, the damaged area of the tooth is cleaned of decay or debris before the crown is cemented or bonded onto the tooth. The crown covers the entire surface of the tooth and is used to repair a cracked, fractured, decayed, or otherwise damaged tooth.
A bridge is made up of three or more crowns that are cemented onto surrounding healthy teeth to create a literal “bridge” in order to fill a hole where a tooth once resided. Our office also offers implant-supported bridges, which are a great addition to your smile when you are missing a lot of teeth.
Root Canals & Extractions
If you are in pain, it is possible that you may need a root canal or even an extraction. A root canal is a common procedure where the doctor removes infected tissue from your tooth root and replaces it with a synthetic material. Often this is a great way to end pain from an infected tooth. However, sometimes it is necessary to extract the tooth due to extensive damage or infection. Either option will end your suffering, and the sooner you get into see the doctor, the better.
Just yesterday, we had a lady come in. She gave us a call. She was traveling through town on her way to Red Lodge for a wedding. She called us. She had a tooth broken off right in the middle of her mouth, right smack in the middle of her smile. She was going to have a hillbilly smile for these pictures, and she was mortified. We worked them into our schedule, and we were able to spend about a good hour and a half with her and rebuild this whole tooth so that she can now smile for the pictures for her wedding. We specifically designed our schedule so that we can get people in immediately if necessary, even if it means tweaking our schedule a little bit, or staying late, or missing a lunch, or whatever we have to do. When people really need your help, they need it now. We strive to accommodate that.
We are always available in case of an emergency. If you are experiencing pain from a damaged or lost tooth or other dental injury, please call us right away. We will get you in to see Dr. Stuart as soon as possible. If you call after hours, please follow the instructions on the answering machine to reach a member of our staff. Let us help you feel better.
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If your kids don’t like to go to the dentist, try Dr. Stuart. Our kids love him and his team. We just visited them yesterday for our 6 month checkup and cleaning, and Brianne was awesome! When I was a kid, the dental hygienist was a lumberjack – but not Brianne, she’s very professional and mindful of each of us. I have sensitive teeth and gums, and my visit with Dr. Stuart and his team was relaxing and easy. And the receptionist Lisa is so great, she always has a smile and positive attitude…so refreshing to have a dentist like Dr. Stuart. We have been going to Dr. Stuart for over 10 years, give him a try; you and your kids will notice the difference.
Our family found the way to Legacy Smiles in the midst of an ongoing yet undiagnosed dental crisis. Fortunately, Dr. Stuart aptly diagnosed the situation and promptly referred me to an oral surgeon to bring immediate relief. Since then, our family continues to be blessed by the genuine empathy and compassion Dr. Stuart has for his patients. He openly addresses any worries or fears we have, always in an informative and respectful manner. We encounter the same high standard of care with all of the staff at Legacy Smiles. Any treatment concerns or financial issues are courteously and promptly addressed and resolved. Dr. Stuart and Legacy Smiles provide the finest professional dental services with incomparable personal care!
Thank you, Dr. Stuart, for the senior discount on the dental work you have done for Vern and me. We’re also sending ‘kudos’ for you as well as your professional and competent staff – Lisa is a gem! It has been a pleasure interacting with all of you through the years. You and Cheryl are a good team… you’re ‘easy on the mouth’!
I wanted to thank you for the excellent service and experience I receive each time I come to your office. I appreciate the warm welcome, the time you spend explaining the procedures, and the personal touch you give. You always go the extra mile and have been a wonderful blessing to my family.
My family and I have been patients of Dr. Stuart for approximately 10 years. First I established dental care, then I quickly realized my children were of age to begin dental care as well. Dr. Stuart and his team have always been amazing to work with. I have 3 children ages 14, 10, and 5. Not one of them is fearful or frightened to go to the dentist. In fact, my 10-year-old just realized this year that she is actually “getting a shot” when she comes in for dental maintenance. She got her first filling at age 4! We are treated professionally, and they are always accommodating to our scheduling needs. I have frequently recommended friends or family to Legacy Smiles and Dr. Stuart only to receive a personal thank you letter and gift as a thank you! Lisa is always on the ball with insurance claims and reminders. I just have to show up! Thank you Dr. Stuart and the team at Legacy Smiles! Your patient care and service has improved our dental health. We love you guys!
Looking for a dentist who will see you in a timely manner? How about listening to you about any fear, be they physical or financial, in a caring, friendly manner? Is taking time to explain a recommended dental procedure important? Don’t hesitate to call Dr. Michael Stuart at Legacy Smiles where you are a valued patient.
I love going to Legacy Smiles! All the staff are so friendly and make the experience a good one! I can’t wait for my next appointment!
I live in So. California and was once visiting Billings and needed to see a dentist. I tried out a few and finally settled on Dr. Stuart. He is simply the best! He extracted a lower wisdom tooth, and when the anesthetic wore off, there was no pain. Zero, zilch, nothing! He and his hygienist are also the only ones who know how to scale and plane my very sensitive mouth with no anesthetic and no pain. And all of them, including the office manager, are very pleasant and accommodating. I highly recommend them. And I, myself, scheduled my dental work for when I was going to be in Helena, MT, then drove 4 hours each way to see this very special dentist. Well worth your while to check him out.