April 06, 2016
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If your little one's teeth have begun to fall out, and their permanent replacements appear to be lagging far behind, you may wish to consider a space maintainer to minimize future orthodontic work. Believe it or not, the absence of your child's teeth might seem cute now, but those tiny little gaps can cause deep gouges in your pocketbook as you watch them fill up with teeth that don't belong there. Space maintainers are simple to use, kids get along fine with them, and they have become the de-facto standard for protecting the cosmetic and functional aspects of your growing child's mouth.

Why Your Child Might Need a Space Maintainer

When a child's tooth is lost early due to trauma, tooth decay, or nature's insistence that it drop out before its permanent replacement is due, a space maintainer can be used to hold back the natural inclination of teeth to move forward. Without preventing this movement, teeth that should be in the rear of our mouths end up along the sides, and take up precious real estate destined for another tenant. The result is overcrowding, and in some cases impacted teeth. In the end, it's always easier to save the space now, then create it later.

How They Work

Space maintainers are very similar in purpose and design to an adult "bridge," but instead of placing artificial teeth over the gap, the space is kept open to accommodate its future resident. At Kirksville Dental Group, we make most space maintainers out of metal, (sometimes both metal and plastic), and custom-mold them to the shape of your child's mouth. In most cases, the maintainer is made up of a metal band attached to a rectangular-shaped wire that butts up against the tooth across the gap. This acts to temporarily preserve the space where the baby tooth once was, so its replacement can erupt without obstruction. To some, the final product looks like an old Radio Flyer® snow sled, or a shoe horn you might use to maintain the shape of unworn shoes.

Does My Child Need One?

It's important to note that dental space maintainers are not required for all childhood tooth loss, and that we’re not going to suggest you create a decade worth of space maintainers as each tooth falls out of your child's mouth. Our bodies are quite effective at saving space for the loss of our front teeth as well as our incisors - it's the teeth along the sides of our mouths that tend to cause the majority of complications. Of course, each mouth is different, so be sure to discuss with us the best course of action for you and your child. If your child has recently lost a tooth, or several teeth, and it’ll be awhile before they’re scheduled to see Dr. Gooch, Dr. Kice-Briggs, or Dr. Harden, give us a call at 660-665-1901 to see if you should come in a little earlier.

Using a space maintainer is an affordable and effective way to ensure your child's teeth come in where they are supposed to, and when they're ready. It can have a positive effect on your wallet, reduce the amount of time your child needs to wear braces, and control the cosmetic appearance of your child's teeth and mouth.  
December 08, 2015
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We have a great new service for you! Patient Connect 365 has some great online features that we know you are going to love!

Once you enroll and set up your own account you will be able to:

  • Request appointments online
  • Get email and text message appointment reminders
  • Be alerted when you're due for your next check up
  • Access your appointment and treatment history online
  • Pay your Bills online


May 12, 2015
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If you’ve been to our office lately, you’ve seen a few new faces! No, we aren’t having a lot of turn over; we’re just improving our customer service for you, the patient.

Over the past several years Kirksville Dental Group has grown and we wanted to make sure that we were going to be able to continue to give our patients the quality of care they have come to deserve and expect. In order to better serve our patients we have brought on Dr. Matthew Harden. With his schedule, we are able to get in more new patients as well as same day emergency appointments without making patients wait.

Jeanie Craggs has been a part of Kirksville Dental Group throughout the years filling in when needed but has officially joined our team full time as a dental assistant! She is a native to the area who brings years of experience. Shelby Eagen is another new assistant that has joined our team. Shelby has a fun loving personality that is eager to learn more about the dental field. Ashley Ayers will be greeting you at the door when you come into the office. We have hired Ashley as the Customer Service Coordinator. She is in charge of making sure we are best serving you, the patient. Ashley will also be keeping up with our website, blog, and social media.

There have been many changes over the past few months and they are all brought on by our desire to serve our patients and to continue to give quality of care. If there is ever anything we can do to improve your experience, please let us know.

March 31, 2015
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Kirksville Dental Group is happy to announce Dr. Matthew Harden will be joining our team!

After graduating Summa cum Laude from University of Missouri and cum Laude from UMKC School of Dentistry, Dr. Harden joined Plaza Dental Group in Columbia, Missouri in 2012. As a native to the area, he is excited to serve the communites in Northeast Missouri with Kirksville Dental Group.

Dr. Harden will be taking new and emergency patients and have late appointments available. Please call our office at 660-665-1901 to schedule your appointment today.

November 20, 2014
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Kirksville Dental Group 2014 Holiday Hours:

Thursday, November 27th: Closed
Friday, November 28th: Closed

Wednesday, December 24th: 8am-1pm
Thursday, December 25th: Closed
Friday, December 26th: Closed

Wednesday, December 31st: 8am-1pm

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