Create a Beautiful and Permanent Smile with Dental Implants

Concept of having strong healthy straight white teeth after Dental Implants. Close up portrait of happy with beaming smile female pensioner pointing on her perfect clear white teeth, isolated on gray background

The world of dentistry has grown to include some impressive and innovative treatments and solutions for a variety of oral health concerns. Dental implants, for example, provide you with permanent, beautiful teeth for many years to come. But what exactly is a dental implant? And how do you know if it’s right for you? We’re here with everything you need to know about dental implants, the procedure, recovery time, benefits, and how we can get you started on the road to a happier, healthier smile.

What Are Dental Implants?

A dental implant, in its simplest form, is a replacement tooth root. Implants replace the natural root of a tooth with a strong foundation that a permanent or removable tooth is then affixed to. These artificial roots are implanted directly into the jaw, where they are able to house artificial or replacement teeth and bridges. Dental implants are a permanent solution for treating all types of tooth-loss, in a variety of people.

Dentists dental prosthetic teeth, gums, roots teaching student model with titanium metal screws dental implants

Procedure and Recovery

As a well-established, safe treatment option for replacing lost teeth, dental implants are common practice for dental professionals. Your dentist will perform a series of tests and exams to ensure you are the right candidate for dental implants. After creating a personalized plan for treatment, your dentist will check the condition of the jaw to ensure implants can be safely placed within a strong foundation. When it comes time for the dental implant procedure, here’s what you can expect:

  • Your dentist will typically provide you with local anesthetics before beginning the procedure. Light sedatives or general anesthetics are typically only provided in cases that are much more complicated.
  • Quickly and simply, your dentist places the implant within the root area of the jaw, where the missing tooth resides. As a simple procedure, implants can be placed within 1 or 2 visits. They are typically made of titanium due to the metal’s resiliency and durability, and the implant acts almost a bolt that will be used to anchor your new teeth.

After your implants are placed, you may experience some general discomfort, but that typically disappears after a few days. Your dental team will provide you with specific instructions for caring for your mouth after the procedure. Once the implant is in, your jaw will need to grow and attach to the implant. This typically takes anywhere between 2-4 months, but every case is different. When your dentist finds that the implant is stable and strong in its place, artificial teeth can be placed within the implant.

Success Rates

When properly cared for, dental implants can last for many years. They require regular maintenance by your dentist and routine care in your everyday life but can last at least 5 years, with some lasting a lifetime. In fact, studies show that implants have a 98% success rate at 5 years for patients all over the country. When the rare case does occur and an implant fails to work properly, it is often due to a poor foundation in the jaw or poor oral hygiene following the implant procedure


The cost of dental implants can vary greatly, depending on a variety of factors. These factors can include whether or not it is a single tooth being replaced or several, severity or length of the procedure, materials used, the type of dental insurance you have, and more. Though the cost of implants truly varies case to case, the average cost around the country is around $3,000-$4,000, per implant. While most people opt for one or a few implants, some decide on the durability of a full-mouth replacement, which can cost anywhere between $30,000-$60,000.

Who Should Consider Dental Implants

Unlike some other dental procedures, almost anyone can get a dental implant that has lost a tooth. It is best for people who have lost one or more teeth, are over the age of 18, and have a jaw that is in healthy condition. An implant may not be placed in a person’s mouth if the jaw is not thick or strong enough to support the implant. But for those with healthy immune systems and strong jaws, implants can be used to replace one tooth or your whole mouth.

At the time of the implant procedure, it is essential that your oral health is in the best shape possible and there are no other active issues looming in your teeth and gums. People with certain conditions may be ineligible for the procedure due to the risk of complications with the implants, like those with heart disease, diabetes, and some other chronic conditions.

The Benefits of Dental Implants

There are a variety of options, treatments, and procedures to treat tooth-loss. But dental implants come with a variety of great advantages, including the following:

  • They are fused with the bone and therefore durable and permanent. They are also hard to damage or break after being placed.
  • There is less discomfort with implants than with dentures, bridges, or other options because the implant becomes a part of you.
  • They look and feel just like your natural teeth, so some may never know you’ve had dental work done.
  • The procedure is generally simple and easy, with little pain and recovery time.
  • Eating, chewing, and talking is possible without the pain or discomfort of dentures, bridges, crowns, etc.
  • They can benefit your overall oral health. Implants do not require the treatment of any surrounding tooth or gum area, so there is little risk to any other area of your oral wellness.
  • They are permanent but also convenient for those who must remove bridges or dentures from their mouths and require no extra maintenance, like glues or adhesives.


At Blue Ash Dental, we strive to provide each and every one of our patients with the best in permanent, oral health solutions. As experts in dental implants, we can help create a personalized and permanent solution for your tooth loss. For more on how dental implants could benefit you, contact our office to schedule your appointment today.

Invisalign®: Comparing the Pros and Cons

The rise of cosmetic dentistry has transformed the field of orthodontics. Patients now have more treatment options than ever to straighten and reposition their crooked teeth. Invisalign® is an innovative orthodontic treatment that is rapidly gaining popularity among adults and teenagers seeking an inconspicuous way to straighten their teeth. Below is a look at the benefits of Invisalign and some key factors to consider before choosing Invisalign for your teen or for yourself.

What is Invisalign®?

Invisalign® is an orthodontic treatment that is designed to help straighten teeth without the hassle or discomfort of metal braces. Dental patients who use the Invisalign system wear a set of clear plastic aligners over their teeth that help gradually move their teeth into the proper position. Invisalign is a popular alternative to traditional metal braces, which some patients find unattractive and uncomfortable.

What are some of the top benefits of Invisalign?

Invisalign offers a host of benefits to adults and teens who need their teeth straightened. From their “barely there” appearance to their comfort and convenience, Invisalign aligners are an excellent solution for patients seeking correction that is understated and user-friendly. Here are some of the top reasons why people choose Invisalign.

1) Attractive appearance

“One of its best advantages is that the trays are relatively invisible. Hence the name Invisalign. Some people simply don’t want anyone to know they are wearing braces.”

Darren Flowers, DMD, Dentistry IQ

Invisalign is popular among people who find traditional metal braces unsightly or who are a bit self-conscious about their teeth. While Invisalign’s aligners are worn over the teeth, their clear construction makes it virtually impossible for anyone to notice that they are wearing corrective aligners.

2) No cuts on the mouth

Traditional braces feature wires and hardware that can result in cuts on the tongue and inside of the cheek. Invisalign’s aligners are made of medical grade plastic and feature a smooth plastic surface that is not damaging to the mouth’s interior.

3) Easy to remove for eating and drinking

“You’ll be ready for anything, from movie night to coffee with friends. Just take your aligners out to eat and drink, then brush your teeth before putting them back in.”

Invisalign allows you to enjoy your favorite foods without worrying about the embarrassing possibility that food will become lodged in your braces. With the Invisalign system, you simply remove your aligners before you eat and replace them after you finish your food.

4) Minimal discomfort

Patients tend to experience minimal discomfort with Invisalign compared to traditional metal braces. Additionally, Invisalign eliminates the possibility that an emergency trip to the dentist will be required to repair a broken metal bracket or wire.

5) A shorter course of treatment

In addition to being more attractive and more comfortable, Invisalign is associated with a shorter average course of treatment than metal braces. Patients must remember to fully comply with their treatment plan in order to enjoy these results.

6) A good treatment for teens

Invisalign is popular among active teenagers who play sports and enjoy eating their favorite foods with friends. While there might be isolated cases in which it is not recommended, Invisalign is generally an effective treatment for teenagers whose teeth are malaligned.

A young female (teenager) at the dentists office in a dental chair receiving her new Invisalign braces. Invisalign

What are the drawbacks of the Invisalign system?

Clearly, Invisalign offers a host of benefits to patients. However, there are some cases that may respond better to traditional braces or another type of orthodontic treatment. Before investing in the Invisalign system, make sure to consider the following drawbacks that may impact treatment results:

1) Patients who do not comply with treatment

Invisalign’s success depends greatly on a patient’s compliance with treatment. Aligners must be worn as directed at least 20 to 22 hours per day in order to achieve desired results. Patients who are forgetful or who have a history of refusing to comply with healthcare treatments are not ideal patients for Invisalign.

2) Patients with overly rotated or tipped teeth

Invisalign is usually not the ideal treatment for patients with severely rotated or tipped teeth. In general, Invisalign is not recommended for patients whose teeth are tipped more than 45 degrees or rotated more than 20 degrees.

3) Patients with large gaps between their teeth

Invisalign is not usually the best course of treatment for patients with multiple missing teeth or patients with gaps of 6 mm or more between their teeth. In these cases, your dentist can recommend an alternative type of treatment.

How much does Invisalign cost?

The cost of Invisalign varies according to the recommended length and course of treatment. Most patients in the United States pay $3,000 to $8,000 for their treatment. Insurance will often cover a sizable portion of this cost with patients bearing responsibility for the remainder of the payment. The Invisalign team provides the following case as an example of what to expect to pay for Invisalign:

  • Doctor Quote for Invisalign:      $4,800
  • Amount Covered by Insurance: $1,800
  • Remaining Balance:                       $3,000

An experienced dentist will need to examine your teeth to provide you with a quote that corresponds to your specific course of treatment. A trained dental professional will also provide guidance regarding insurance coverage and can outline payment options to meet your budgetary needs.

What is the best way to find out if Invisalign is right for you or your teen?

The best way to determine whether you are a good candidate for Invisalign is to visit a trained dental professional in your area. As Cincinnati’s most trusted provider of cosmetic dentistry, the team of dental professionals with Blue Ash Dental Group has the skill and experience to assess your smile and determine whether Invisalign is a good option for you. If we determine that Invisalign may not be the best course of treatment for you or your teen, we can suggest alternative treatments that will help reposition your teeth. We invite you to contact us to learn how Invisalign can straighten your teeth and help you smile with renewed confidence. All of us at Blue Ash Dental look forward to meeting you!

What to Expect with Dental Fillings

Pediatric dentistry. Female dentist examining a young girl.

What exactly is a dental filling?

A dental filling is a common term for a dental restoration, or the process used to replace tooth structure that has been damaged decay. Fillings are used to treat tooth decay or teeth that have suffered cracks, breaks, or excessive wear. Dental fillings are performed by a licensed dentist, who may work in tandem with a dental assistant who helps remove saliva and debris from your mouth during the filling process.

How common are dental fillings?

Fillings are more common than you think. If you are among the small percentage of Americans without cavities or fillings, then you are definitely in the minority. The overwhelming majority of Americans have cavities that either require treatment or have already been treated and filled by a dentist. The typical American has three dental fillings while one in four Americans has  11 or more dental fillings. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that nearly one-third of adults between the ages of 20 and 44 have untreated dental caries that would likely require fillings.

What steps are involved with a filling?

Dental fillings take time to complete and require a methodical approach. To be safe, you should for your filling to take approximately one hour to perform from start to finish. If your cavity is small, your dentist will be able to complete your filling in substantially less time. Here is a look at the basic steps involved when filling a cavity.

1) Your dentist will numb the area around your tooth

Before a dentist begins to work on your tooth, he or she will apply a topical numbing agent to the tissue surrounding your tooth. Then, after a few minutes, your dentist will administer a local anesthetic to help prevent you from feeling any pain while your dentist is working on your tooth.

2) The decayed portion of your tooth will be removed

Once the local anesthetic has taken hold, your dentist will begin removing the decayed portion of your tooth. This is typically accomplished with one or more dental drills or a laser. Your dentist or an assistant may use a suction apparatus to remove debris from your mouth during the procedure.

3) Your dentist will remove all debris and clean your tooth

Before applying the filling, your dentist will make sure that all debris has been removed from your tooth’s surface. Then, he or she will make sure that your tooth is cleaned and dried before proceeding to the next step.

4) Your dentist will probe your tooth to ensure all decay is gone

Once the decayed portion of your tooth has been removed, your dentist will use an instrument to probe the newly exposed area of your tooth to make sure that there is no remaining decay.

The aesthetic restoration of a lower molar tooth with composite resin. Dental filling

5) Your dentist will fill the hole in your tooth

Dentists vary in terms of the material used to fill a tooth. Filling options include silver amalgam, gold, and porcelain, and tooth-colored composite material. Many of today’s dental offices use tooth-colored composite material for fillings because they are more cosmetically appealing than other filling options.

How will my tooth feel after the filling process?

“Tooth sensitivity following placement of a filling is fairly common. A tooth may be sensitive to pressure, air, sweet foods, or temperature. Usually, the sensitivity resolves on its own within a few weeks…Pain relievers are generally not required. Contact your dentist if the sensitivity does not subside within 2 to 4 weeks or if your tooth is extremely sensitive.”

The Cleveland Clinic

After your dentist is finished filling your tooth, your tooth may be sensitive to hot or cold foods and liquids. In most cases, this sensitivity is not severe and will subside within a matter of days or weeks. If your sensitivity does not subside, make sure to contact your dentist for further instruction.

Will I be able to eat after a filling?

Your dentist may suggest that you refrain from eating right after a filling. For starters, your mouth may still be numb from the anesthetic, which could cause you to inadvertently bite your tongue or the inside of your mouth. Secondly, your tooth might be especially sensitive to hot or cold foods right after your restoration. The oral health experts with Colgate-Palmolive offer some specific instructions for chewing after a filling:

“Biting exerts tremendous pressure on the teeth, and this can make them very sore after you get a filling. When chewing your food, take your time and try not to bite all the way through; this will prevent your teeth from making forceful contact. If possible, chew on the opposite side of the mouth from where your filling is.”

Colgate-Palmolive Company

In addition to chewing with care after your filling, you should avoid eating hard or sticky foods, as they could stick to your newly applied composite material and dislodge your filling. The best course of action is to consult with your dentist before you try to eat or drink right after your filling is applied.

How long do fillings last?

“Dental fillings may last many years; however, eventually all fillings need to be replaced. Constant assault from eating and drinking, or stress from clenching or grinding, eventually may cause a filling to fail.”

American Dental Association (ADA)

Unfortunately, dental fillings are not designed to last forever. The exact lifespan of a dental filling will depend on the type of filling you have and how well you care for your teeth. In general, amalgam fillings have an average lifespan of just over twelve years while composite fillings have an average lifespan of just over seven years.

What is the best path to successful fillings?

While dental fillings are common among Americans, they should always be performed by a trained dentist. The best way to ensure that your fillings are properly performed is to visit a dentist who specializes in restorative procedures. As Cincinnati’s most accomplished provider of restorative dentistry, Blue Ash Dental Group welcomes the opportunity to help you overcome tooth decay. At Blue Ash Dental Group, our goal is to help maximize your comfort while we ensure that your fillings are expertly performed. We invite you to contact us to find out how we can help you improve your oral health. We look forward to serving as your trusted provider for all of your dental care needs!

Put a Cap On It: Dental Crown FAQs

dental crown frequently asked questions

Do you have that one tooth that just doesn’t want to play along with the others? Maybe it’s a different shape, a different color or just too sensitive? At Blue Ash Dental Group, we provide you with simple solutions to nagging problems.

What is a Dental Crown?

 A dental crown is a tooth-like cap cemented to a tooth that is need of strengthening, reshaping or cosmetic improvement. With a crown, the original tooth (or partial tooth if cracked or broken) remains along with the dental root. The purpose of a crown would be to give your troubled tooth the boost it needs to function and appear as a healthy tooth. It can protect a weak tooth, give a full shape to a damaged tooth, or cover up a tooth that is discolored or misshapen.

Dental crowns can be made to resemble your permanent teeth (ceramic, porcelain, resin, etc.) or can add some sparkle (and less wear and tear) to your smile with metal or stainless steel.

What Is Involved in the Procedure?

The initial visit regarding your dental crown involves preparing the tooth for the procedure and deciding on the style cap that’s perfect for you. Ensuring that your natural tooth will accept a bonding with an artificial cap may require filing or filling. A mold of this prepared tooth base will be taken and used to fabricate your dental crown. You leave our office with a temporary crown and return once your custom crown is ready for placement.

Is a Dental Crown Painful?

With any restorative dentistry, mild discomfort is to be expected. During the preparation of your tooth, you will benefit from local anesthesia (novocaine) during any filing or drilling required. After the placement of your new crown, you may experience some tenderness at the gums. The most common challenge is getting used to your newly structured tooth.

How Do I Care for My Dental Crown?

Your new crown is now a part of your mouth so it needs to be treated as well as the other occupants if it is to last the average span of 5 to 15 years. Disciplined brushing and flossing is mandatory, especially to ensure healthy gums at the base of your cap. It’s also recommended to avoid too many hard or abrasive foods as they can wear down the crown more easily than a natural tooth, leading to a replacement sooner than typically expected.

We Tip Our Cap to You

Give us a call today to explore your restorative options. We accept most dental insurance so check your plan to see if we are a preferred provider.

Keeping It Clean: Teeth Cleaning and Hygiene

teeth cleaning and dental hygiene

At Blue Ash Dental Group, we start with the basics. Routine dental cleanings and good oral hygiene are the foundations of a healthy and amazing smile. Regular visits to your dentist and dental hygienist will help keep your teeth biting for a lifetime. And in the event of a dental misfortune, we are right here with you offering you the options available to get the most out of your pearly whites.

How to Make the Most of Your Visit

 Come prepared. The everyday care of your teeth is paramount. While professional cleaning and hygiene is required to help prevent oral disease, consistent brushing and flossing is your job. During your visit, we can review the best practices in brushing including which type of brush and toothpaste is best for your gums and enamel. We can also provide tips to get the most out of your flossing habits without feeling labored by the process. Eating fresh fruits and vegetables and brushing immediately after consuming sugary foods are additional ways you can make the most of your regularly scheduled cleanings.

What to Expect at Your Visit

Even with proper dental home care, a thorough cleaning and exam by a dental team is still necessary. Visiting Blue Ash Dental twice a year will ensure those hard-to-reach spots are being cared for properly. And when plaque turns to tartar (which it strives to do!), only professional tools can remove this calcification before it evolves into gum disease.

We start with an evaluation of your oral health including questions about any challenges you’re encountering in your dental care. A gentle and meticulous cleaning, flossing and x-rays follow. Our hygienist will discuss your visit so far with our dentist and any additional recommended procedures will be reviewed.

Cost of Care

We accept most insurance at Blue Ash Dental. For those with insurance, we offer new patients a free power toothbrush during their new patient visit. For those without insurance, we will be offering the cleaning, exam, and x-rays for $99 (restrictions apply). We also offer convenient online payment options.

Come & Meet Our Cincinnati Team

 Blue Ash Dental has been serving the tri-state area for over 30 years. At our new state-of-the-art office at 4815 Cooper Road, our team of professional dentists and their full support staff are committed to quality, family-friendly dental care. Contact us today. Let us be your partner in good oral health.

Solea® Laser: Needle Free, Drill Free Dentistry

Solea® Laser: Needle Free, Drill Free Dentistry

According to the American Dental Association® (ADA), 22% of adults do not visit the dentist out of fear – fear of pain, fear of drills, fear of needles.  At Blue Ash Dental, we specialize in a cutting-edge laser technology called Solea®, the first CO2 dental laser cleared by the FDA for hard and soft tissue procedures. With Solea® dental laser, you will experience virtually no pain, no noise, and no needle. Sit back and enjoy the sweet sound of silence.

How Does the Solea® Dental Laser Work?

A laser is a unique and narrow light source often used in cutting, drilling, surgery, holography, and the reading of coded information such as UPCs and compact discs. The precision and wavelength of a laser allow it to deliver results with exacting precision and speed. In the world of dental lasers, this source is used in the place of drills and extracting tools. Solea® is a dental laser using an oxygen-18 isotope which evaporates tooth enamel and provides a clean cut to soft tissue.

The Benefits of Solea®

As if pain-free, drill-free, needle-free wasn’t benefited enough, the use of Solea® laser dentistry provides you with another valuable bonus: your time. The amount of preparation for local anesthetics, sterilization of multiple tools and everyone’s favorite part – waiting to get numb! – are practically eliminated with the use of the Solea® dental laser.

Also, dental insurance policies code laser dentistry the same as traditional drilling. If your plan covers drill work, it will cover Solea®.

More Than Just Drilling

The science behind the Solea® dental laser allows use for hard tissue AND soft tissue procures. The laser technology can be used for gingivectomy surgery, the removal of oral lesions and other soft tissues procedures with minimal bleeding and need for sutures.

Visit Us for the Solea® Difference

At Blue Ash Dental, we pride ourselves on providing an alternative to needles and drills. By offering Solea® laser dentistry, we can decrease our patients’ discomfort and increase their commitment to frequent visits to our office. Speaking of visits, schedule yours today.

Please welcome Dr. Sama Alkalaf!

We have great news! We have added a new dentist to our family here at Blue Ash Dental Group. Her name is Dr. Sama Alkalaf.

Dr. Alkalaf is originally from Cleveland, Ohio and comes from a family of dentists. Her dental career started as a dental assistant working in her hometown, where she discovered a passion for dentistry and patient care. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Biology from Miami University and graduated from Tufts University School of Dental Medicine with a Doctor of Dental Medicine degree. Upon her graduation from dental school, Dr. Alkalaf completed advanced training in a general practice residency program at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. She furthered her cosmetic dentistry and Invisalign training in Manhattan for the past few years, before returning to her home state of Ohio. She is dedicated to developing personal relationships with her patients and ensuring they receive the highest quality of care. She prioritizes patient comfort and encourages preventative care. Dr. Alkalaf is currently a member of the American Dental Association, American Association of Women Dentist, and the Academy of General Dentistry. She enjoys cooking, traveling, yoga, and photography in her free time.

Yes you read that right. Dr. Alkalaf also does Invisalign! If you’re interested in Invisalign, please give us a call at our office to get scheduled to meet with Dr. Alkalaf.

The good news keeps on coming! We will soon be open on Fridays! Yes! Starting October 12th, we will be open from 8am to 2pm on Fridays.

Please give us a call to schedule your appointment! 513-891-8555 We look forward to seeing you!

Dr Shane Retirement

After 50 years of practicing dentistry, I have decided to pursue a hopefully happy retirement.  Monday, April 25th will be my last day.  Time has passed quickly and I still enjoy dentistry, but I have developed other interests along the way.

I have received great support from past and present staff, for which I am thankful.  Dr. Detmer and Dr. Reynolds will be continuing the care for all of my patients.  My wife and I look forward to continuing with their care as well.

I want to thank all of my patients for their support over the years.  I wish you all of the best in life and as you continue on at Blue Ash Dental Group.

Yours in retirement,
Dr. Michael Shane

Please Welcome Dr. Kyle W. Reynolds

Dr. Kyle W. Reynolds, DMD, is a 2009 graduate of the University of Kentucky College of Dentistry. After 5 years practicing in West Chester, Ohio and Harrodsburg, Kentucky, he joined us at Blue Ash Dental Group. Dr. Reynolds prides himself on taking time to get to know each patient and discussing treatment options that meet each patient’s specific priorities and needs. Whether it’s been 6 months or 6 years since your last dental visit, you won’t feel judgment from Dr. Reynolds. He will only focus on the next step in getting you back to optimal oral health. When he’s not in the office, Dr. Reynolds loves to stay active. He frequently goes on foreign dental mission trips to remote locations like Honduras and Micronesia. When it’s warm, you can find him on the golf course (normally searching for his lost golf balls), and when it’s cold, he loves to ski. He’s an avid college sports fan and you might spot him wearing his Kentucky blue on game day!