Get to Know Jaw Joints

Good dental function is significantly associated with better brain function, better vision, better hearing, better lung volume, better heart volume, better muscle strength, better bone mineral content, less heart attacks and longer life.
(SOURCE: British Medical Journal — 1989 & Community Dental Oral Epidemiology — 1990)

[Read more…]

Why a Missing Back Tooth Matters ….

Missing Tooth, Creve Coeur Family Dentist, Cosmetic Dentist Creve Coeur, MO

“Ssshhh … my back tooth is missing!”


The American College of Prosthodontists reports that 178 million people in the US are missing at least one tooth. Delta Dental Northeast reports that nearly half of Americans ages 65 and older have lost six or more teeth, and 20 percent have lost all of their teeth. In our Creve Coeur practice, we fortunately don’t see averages this high.

When the missing tooth is toward the front of the smile, most people will replace it with a dental implant or other tooth replacement option.

However, when the missing tooth is a molar or toward the back, it can seem less important to do anything. The logic goes: “if no one can see it, it’s not as important as a missing tooth closer to the front.” 

Missing back teeth are common because the molars are the first adult teeth to erupt and unfortunately, often the first to be lost due to decay or fracture. And, as this post hopes to convey, the impact of a missing back tooth on your smile is equally as important in the long run as a front tooth.

Any missing tooth initiates this cascading series of events:

• Wrinkles appear around the mouth. Upper and lower lips lose fullness and appear thinner.

• Lips droop at corners of the mouth. Collapse of upper lip due to underlying bone loss and loss of fullness will make the nose appear larger than if the upper lip had more support.

• Decrease in facial height as the distance between the tip of the nose and chin reduces.

• The chin moves forward.

These changes occur over time due to bone loss triggered by a missing tooth.

When a tooth is missing and isn’t replaced, the jawbone supporting that tooth has no purpose and will begin to shrink. What follows is:

  • the teeth begin to shift;
  • chewing is shifted to other teeth, causing them to wear faster;
  • 20% of adjacent teeth will be lost within 4-8 years; and
  • the bone shrinks, leading to the collapsing facial appearance described above.

If you’re looking for a cosmetic dentist in Creve Coeur, Artistic Dentistry has been providing all cosmetic services for over thirty years. With advanced technology, including 3D imaging, state-of-the-art sterilization, laser therapy and the most natural dental materials available that are effective, we’ve become the Go-To Center for Tooth Replacement. In that we offer all tooth replacement services, we’re not partial to one or the other. Our approach is simply to find out which option works best for our patient, based on his/her dental condition, needs and budget.

Contact us today to learn more!

8 Steps to Prevent Cavities ……

….Get Healthier and Lose Weight.



Copyright: subbotina / 123RF Stock Photo1. Read Your Labels!

1. Read Your Labels!

From frozen pizzas to yogurts, sugars in the form of high fructose corn syrups, corn solids, and the myriad other names are found in foods. Choose foods with no added sugars – or at least no high-fructose corn syrup or corn solids. Sweeten with Stevia herb powder. You can find it on Amazon.

2. Stop Sipping Sodas and Munching Snacks Throughout the Day.

Sugar and cavities go hand in hand.When you eat something sweet, it takes the bacteria about 20seconds to convert it to acid, which then lasts for about 30 minutes.

3. Brush and Floss After Every Meal. 

The bacteria living in your mouth mixes with your saliva and feeds on carbohydrates left on your teeth. This is what causes plaque. And plaque is acidic, meaning it begins to eat away at your tooth enamel unless removed.

Although debris from healthy foods can also turn into plaque, foods like candy, breath mints, raisins and cereals can get stuck in the crevices of your teeth. That’s why sipping on sodas (even diet sodas, which contain acid) and munching on chips or sugary foods throughout the day causes tooth decay faster than higher amounts of sugar consumed at one time. It’s the pattern in which you eat it and not the quantity that determines the speed at which cavities take hold.

4. Get a tongue scraper and use it.

This handy device clears the “shmutz” off your tongue that bacteria can use to create plaque.

5. Get your teeth cleaned professionally every six months.

Just like your shower tiles need the crevices cleaned periodically with a toothbrush, your teeth need those crevices cleared of plaque buildup before it gets into your tooth enamel or under your gumline. Your x-rays can detect small cavities so you can get them filled before they really start to cause trouble.

6. Simplify your food choices.

High quality eggs, plain yogurt, vegetables and salads and lean meats, preferably raised on grass are healthier than the majority of foods in most supermarkets — even “health” supermarkets. 

7. Cut out the sugary drinks.

Once you switch from sodas and juices to unsweetened teas and water you might be surprised at how much better you feel.

8. Make your “pick me up” a healthy tasty treat, such as the shake recipe below.

It provides not only a high quality unprocessed protein, but it’s low carbohydrate, low- calorie and delicious.

High-Protein, Low-Sugar Chocolate Shake (about 250 calories, 20 gms protein)

• Raw organic whey from grass-fed cows (
• Cacao powder (
• Unsweetened almond milk
• Truvia or stevia (optional — it’s sweet enough with just the banana)
• ½ Frozen banana



Alive Magazine Article With Dr Peter Pagano


Peter J Pagano DDS

Peter J Pagano DDS

Artistic Dentistry: Peter J. Pagano D.D.S.

Our Specialties: Artistic Dentistry provides most dental services under one roof. With a multidisciplinary approach, we’re able to diagnose and deliver a complete treatment plan. We have offered traditional orthodontics since 1977 and clear braces since they first became available. We’ve also offered dental implant systems since 1999, which are even more popular today. Since a great many of our clientele are busy professionals, being able to get everything done under one roof is very attractive.

What We’re Known For: We are known by our patients as a high-tech practice with a high-touch, neighborhood ambience. Our scheduling system is designed around the needs of busy professionals, so we always aim to keep wait times under 10 minutes.

Embracing Technology: With 3-D cone beam technology, also known as Computerized Tomography (a “CT Scan”) we’re able to view images in three dimensions, as opposed to just two. This takes the guesswork out of diagnosis, and in the case of dental implants, allows for more precise placement of the implant. We also have digital intra-oral imaging technology, which reduces patient exposure to radiation to just a fraction of traditional X-rays. And with laser technology, we can recontour gum tissues for our aesthetic cases.

Expert Advice: Dentistry is the starting point for overall health. If your gums are bleeding or you’re experiencing tooth or jaw pain, there’s something wrong. Those conditions need immediate attention in order to preserve oral health, which goes a long way in maintaining an attractive appearance and a healthy body.

Services: Single-tooth and full-arch dental implants, TMJ, crown and bridge, periodontics, traditional orthodontics as well as clear braces, root canal therapy, oral surgery, composite and porcelain restorations, porcelain veneers, bone grafting and sinus lifts.

12334 Olive Blvd. | Creve Coeur, MO 63141
314.576.3000 |

5 Dangers of Sugar & Dental Cleaning Offer


The 5 dangers of sugar that don't just damage teeth; they compromise your health

Sugary treats don’t just damage teeth; they compromise your health

It’s common knowledge that sugar isn’t good for your teeth and can lead to cavities and tooth loss, but there’s many more reasons to overcome a sugar craving. 76 reasons, to be exact, are found in the book Lick the Sugar Habit, by Nancy Appleton, PhD.  If you’d like to end your relationship with sugar but need a little more incentive than knowing it’s not good for you, here’s 5 Dangers of Sugar from the list of 76:

5 Dangers of Sugar

1. Sugar can cause acidic saliva, tooth decay, and periodontal disease (which often leads to tooth loss).
2. Sugar causes food allergies (food allergies cause everything from skin rashes to indigestion to asthma).
3. Sugar can make your skin age by changing the structure of collagen.
4. Sugar can increase your body’s fluid retention (Hello?? Water weight anyone?).
5. Sugar is enemy #1 of your bowel movement.


If you’ve been consuming sugary foods or drinks and haven’t had a cleaning in over six months, call by December 30th to schedule your Cleaning, 5 Point Dental Exam & X-Rays for just $87. That’s over $200 in savings. CALL 314-576-3000.*

*This Limited Time Fee will be honored as long as you call by March 31, 2016 to reserve an appointment thru June 30, 2016.

Are Your Teeth Shrinking From Stress?


jaw clenching can shorten teeth over time

jaw clenching can shorten teeth over time

Daytime clenching and nighttime grinding will erode the height of your teeth over time. Most patients we see are not even aware of these habits. Typically, the grinding and clenching is caused by stress.

This article has some great tips to help relieve stress, however the first step is becoming aware of the habit.

Some additional reasons for clenching could include:

An unknown TMJ condition.

If you have clenching or grinding or even unexplained headaches, give us a call. Dr. Pete has treated such conditions for over 30 years.

Call 314-576-3000.







Even the Mona Lisa Was Transformed With a Good Cleaning

Even the Mona Lisa was transformed with a good cleaning. Your regular dental checkup will keep your smile sparkling!

Even the Mona Lisa was transformed with a good cleaning.
Your regular dental checkup will keep your smile sparkling!

Has the Luster of Your Smile Faded?

One Good Cleaning Can Make All the Difference
(See Offer Below)

This duplicate of the Mona Lisa (on the left) was discovered recently in Madrid. It was created by an apprentice who sat next to DaVinci and copied each stroke as he painted. When cleaned, it revealed details not distinguishable on the original.

Our dental cleanings are so THOROUGH that even if their as dingy as the original Mona Lisa, we can still restore the luster and a smooth feel to your teeth. Your gums will be happier and your teeth more sparkly, making you want to smile more!


If you haven’t had your teeth cleaned in over a year, call to schedule your CLEANING, 5-POINT DENTAL EXAM AND X-RAYS by July 31 and pay an Introductory Fee of Just $87. That’s a savings of nearly $200. Just call by July 31 to schedule an appt.

Call 314-576-3000. Mention the MONA LISA Rate when you call.




Can Your Teeth Last Longer Than You?

Vincent van Gogh Head of a Skeleton with a burning cigaretteMaybe Vincent van Gogh was onto something when he created his famous “Head of a Skeleton With a Burning Cigarette.”

Or … maybe not.

Either way, the painting conjures up what archaeologists might unearth in the future (sans the burning cigarette) due to this little known secret for preventing tooth decay.

A fluoride varnish painted on the teeth hardens enamel and can prevent decay. Even if a cavity is in
its early stages, the varnish can sometimes repair the tooth. This procedure is more commonly
suggested for children, but at a measly $28 it makes sense for an adult who is prone to tooth decay. It’s a heck of a lot cheaper than allowing a cavity to develop — never mind having to get a filling.

Ask for it on your next six month checkup.

Keeping Free From Cavities Is Old Time Common Sense

Look Ma' No Cavities!

Back in 1958 when this ad first came out, it was a lot simpler to stay healthy; food was more natural, people ate more fruits and vegetables and meats weren’t pumped up with chemicals. The environment was less toxic and couch potatos were unheard of.
Despite advances in science and technology, staying free from cavities and getting regular dental checkups still form the basis of good health. Just like this ad depicts. That’s probably why it was recently named one of the Top 100
Most Memorable Taglines.

If you do nothing else, keep your gums free of disease and your teeth free of cavities. Dr. Pete says: “There’s just no good argument for waiting to fill cavities. The earlier you get them filled, the more painless and less costly it is.”
Today’s nonmetallic white filling material is more attractive than the silver fillings of fifty years ago. It eliminates any risks connected with putting metal into your mouth. Dr Pete’s been using this material for over twenty years.
Did You Know the Best Time to Treat a Cavity Is When Its Not Hurting? Here’s why:

  1. Waiting until a cavity hurts can lead to more extensive work
  2. One of the best ways to prevent a root canal is to fill a cavity when it’s small
  3. Cavities usually don’t hurt until they grow and affect nerves or cause fracture
  4. Bad breath is one sign of tooth decay
  5. Pain when consuming sweet, hot or cold foods or drinks indicates tooth decay
  6. A cavity doesn’t get better on its own
  7. The most economical time to do fillings is when they’re small.


Want to Keep Your Teeth and Gums Healthier?

A Tongue Scraper Removes Plaque

Try Adding This Little Known Step to Your Daily Dental Routine

Everyone pretty much knows by now brushing and flossing after every meal and getting a professional cleaning at least every six months has a huge impact on dental health.

But there’s another facet to personal daily dental hygiene that has a big impact on dental health: scraping your tongue. Perhaps we don’t hear that much about it because tongue scrapers are not well promoted.

One inexpensive tongue scraper can practically last a lifetime. Studies suggest that by removing the soft plaque from the tongue, you’re removing most of the bacteria and other debris that are the primary source of bad breath, hard plaque (tartar) and mineral leaching acids (tooth decay).

The latest research associates the bacteria in our mouths with heart disease and other ailments. The bottom line – for dramatically better oral hygiene and health just add cleaning your tongue to your routine.