Exceptional Dentistry

Dubuque Cosmetic Dentistry Blog

Dubuque Dental Team Painting Event

March 23rd, 2016

Create It Paint Party

The Exceptional Dentistry Dubuque Dental Team spent an afternoon together painting at Create It in Dubuque, Iowa. Create It is a local Dubuque art sudio led by Dubuque artist Sarah Barnes.

Located on Locust Street near the Boys and Girls Club in downtown Dubuque, Create It is a beautiful place to gather with friends for a paint party.  Artists Sarah Barnes and her mother, Jeanelle, share their painting wisdom with all who visit their studio.  Sarah and Jeanelle explain how certain paintbrushes, certain brush strokes, and color choices help to develop the desired looks of the various paintings. Sarah walked our Dubuque dental team step by step through 2 paintings of our choice. She helped us go from blank canvas to masterpiece!

Here is a video to highlight our fun afternoon of painting:


The song featured in our video is “Carry a Lantern” by Driftless Sisters of Galena, IL. To hear the complete song from these talented local musicians, click here.

We were able to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day together, share food and drink, enjoy each other’s company, and create a painting to bring home.  There are a lot of “perfectionists” in our group… it’s the nature of our career!  So it was fun to see the focused work, hear the fun laughs, and admire the final results.

 Exceptional Dentistry: Dubuque Dental Team

Kristen Berning, Alexia Murray, Dubuque Dental Team, Sarah Barnes, Create It, Paint Party

The Final Masterpieces!  Back row: Melissa, Stephanee, Amy, Jen, Traci, Kristen.  Front row: Brittany, Sammi, Amanda, Alexia.  The Exceptional Dentistry Team :)

“We are not a team because we work together. We are a team because we trust, respect and care for each other.” -Vala Afshar

The above quote really applies to our incredible team at Exceptional Dentistry.  We spent a lot of our week together, and we feel so lucky to be surrounded by a group of talented, kind people.  This team has awesome chemistry.  They care about each other, they care about doing their jobs well, and most importantly, they care so much about the patients that we serve.  They are truly an exceptional team.

 

Exceptional Dentistry provides family, cosmetic, tooth whitening, implant, and sedation dental care at 4200 Asbury Road, Dubuque, IA 52002 and serves the Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Dubuque, IA and Galena, IL areas.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Ted Murray or Dr. Kristen Berning, or Dr. Alexia Oetken please call 563-556-2711 or contact us online.

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Healthy Mouths | Healthy Children – Dubuque

March 3rd, 2016

Childhood Dental Decay

Dental decay (cavities) is the number one childhood disease.  It is more common than asthma.  Each year thousands of children miss school due to toothaches.  Thousands of children go untreated.   Much of this dental decay can be prevented with proper education, nutrition, and oral health care.  It is important that care providers both at home and at school have the knowledge to promote healthy mouths and healthy children.

Healthy Mouths | Healthy Children

A local coalition, Healthy Mouths | Healthy Children, was established many years ago with the focus to improve oral health and access to care for all children in this area.  Our outreach area includes the following northeast Iowa counties: Allamakee, Chickasaw, Clayton, Delaware, Dubuque, Fayette, Howard, and Winneshiek.

Dubuque Healthy Mouths

An Original Healthy Mouths | Healthy Children Logo

Healthy Mouths | Healthy Children has received grants from the Dubuque Racing Association (DRA).    The committee has included many volunteers such as local health care providers, Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) employees, community health workers, hygienists, and Dubuque Dentists.  They have completed many accomplishments over the years to improve children’s dental health.  They have created educational materials for local schools and medical offices.

Healthy Mouths | Healthy Children assembled a couple of traveling drink displays.  These displays were to show how much sugar was in various drinks, so that people would learn about healthy beverage choices.

Dr. Kristen Berning is currently serving a five year term on the Healthy Mouths | Healthy Children board.  The group meets twice a year to discuss and establish goals that will support the group’s mission and vision.  Current goals include educating local daycares and preschools about healthy snack options, developing Public Service Announcements on oral health topics, and supporting the 2016 Iowa Mission of Mercy.

2016 Iowa Mission of Mercy

Dubuque will be hosting the 2016 Iowa Mission of Mercy (IMOM) at Dubuque Five Flags Center on September 23 & 24.  In previous years, the IMOM event has provided free dental care to 1200 people.  This will be a huge event requiring a lot of community support!  We look forward to participating!

Exceptional Dentistry provides family, cosmetic, tooth whitening, implant, and sedation dental care at 4200 Asbury Road, Dubuque, IA 52002 and serves the Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Dubuque, IA and Galena, IL areas.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Ted Murray or Dr. Kristen Berning, or Dr. Alexia Oetken please call 563-556-2711 or contact us online.

 

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Dubuque Dentist Oral Sleep Apnea Appliance

February 23rd, 2016

The Danger of Snoring: Dubuque Dentist provides Snoring and Oral Sleep Apnea Appliance

Sleep Apnea appliance

Barry wakes up several times a night with a sharp pain in his side.  He doesn’t sleep well because of it.   The source of the stabbing pain?  It comes from his wife whose elbow jabs him in the ribs because his loud snoring wakes her up. The sore ribs are one problem.  The wife who can’t sleep is a worse problem.   But the most dangerous problem is the snoring, may indicate a life-threatening condition called sleep apnea.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) refers to the inability to breathe due to an abnormal upper airway. People with OSA stop breathing multiple times in one hour for more than ten seconds each time.  It is estimated that 1 in 5 adults may suffer from sleep apnea.

Untreated sleep apnea can be associated with the following:

  • heart attack
  • stroke
  • high blood pressure
  • diabetes
  • acid reflux

Poor sleep quality also leads to morning headaches, depression, impaired concentration, decreased sex drive, and frequent night urination.  Sleep apnea results in daytime sleepiness that increases the risk of auto accidents and accidents at work.

A specialist physician must make the diagnosis of sleep apnea.  Treatment options for OSA include CPAP, surgery, or oral appliance therapy.

A CPAP machine delivers pressured air through a mask.  The CPAP machine is very effective for treating obstructive sleep apnea.  However, some people stop using the CPAP because the CPAP can be noisy, cumbersome, difficult to travel with, limit speaking or drinking, and limit sleeping positions.

Sleep Apnea Appliance

If a person is not able to use the CPAP, dentists can fabricate a custom oral appliance that will help open the airway, decrease snoring, and decrease the severity of OSA.  In February 2006, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine stated that oral appliances are appropriate for FIRST line treatment of mild to moderate OSA, and for patients who fail treatment such as CPAP and/or surgery.

Many oral appliances are FDA approved and their success is supported by research.  Oral appliance therapy is 96% successful for treating snoring, and reduces the need for surgery & medications.

If you or a loved one snores, talk to a specialist physician, have a sleep test done, and ask Dr. Kristen Berning if you are a candidate for an oral appliance.  Thousands of Americans aren’t getting a good night’s sleep… and they are putting their health and their relationships at risk.

Dr. Kristen Berning offers free consultations to discuss the snoring and obstructive sleep apnea appliance.

Exceptional Dentistry provides complete family, cosmetic, tooth whitening, implant, orthodontic, sleep apnea and snoring oral appliance, and sedation dental care at 4200 Asbury Road, Dubuque, IA 52002 and serves the Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Dubuque, IA and Galena, IL areas.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Ted Murray or Dr. Kristen Berning, or Dr. Alexia Oetken please call 563-556-2711 or contact us online.

 

 

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Dr. Alexia Oetken and Dental Bonding research

September 22nd, 2015

Dental Bonding Research

How cool is this?!  This week we spotted Dr. Alexia (Murray) Oetken’s name in a popular dental journal, Dentistry Today.    Her research on dental bonding is making an impact!

Dental Bonding Dubuque Dentist

Dr. Alexia’s research is referenced in this dental journal

Dr. Alexia Murray Oetken, Dubuque Dentist dental bonding

Dr. Alexia (Murray) Oetken

Dr. Alexia (Murray) Oetken was involved in dental research at the University of Iowa College of Dentistry.  The University of Iowa Dental Research Center is a highly recognized dental research facility.  Researchers work together from around the world on different dental topics.  The topics cover a wide range of subjects.  The subjects include dental and oral diseases, oral health prevention, dental materials, dental technology, and more.

Dr. Alexia’s research mentor, Dr. Marcos Vargas, is a recognized expert in restorative and cosmetic dentistry.  He lectures nationally and internationally on cosmetic dentistry.  Dr. Vargas has published articles extensively in topics on dental bonding.

Dr. Alexia’s specific research topics were dental materials such as white fillings and dental bonding.  Over 3 years, Dr. Alexia developed and executed 2 dental research projects on dental bonding material and techniques. One of Dr. Alexia Oetken and Dr. Marcos Vargas’ research projects evaluated the effect of different insertion techniques on the marginal adaptation of resin-composite restorations.   Resin-composite restorations are tooth-colored fillings.   Highly specific techniques are needed to achieve successful results.  Her second research project evaluated different adhesive or dental bonding systems on the resin-dentin bond durability.  Dental adhesion allows for conservative removal of tooth structure and esthetic outcomes during dental treatment.

She presented these projects on both the local level and the national level.  Her efforts granted her second and third place awards in the American Dental Association (ADA) Table Clinic Competition at the Dows Institute for Dental Research.

Look below to see the journal page where the information from her research study is used!

Dental Bonding Dubuque Dentist

The right side shows the page from Dentistry Today

Dentistry is always changing.  The technology and materials are constantly evolving to improve every day dentistry.  Dental research is vital to the progression of dentistry.  Being on the cutting edge of both dental technology and dental materials is necessary to meet the evolving oral health care needs of our patients.

 

Exceptional Dentistry provides complete family, cosmetic, dental bonding, tooth whitening, implant, orthodontic, and sedation dental care at 4200 Asbury Road, Dubuque, IA 52002 and serves the Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Dubuque, IA and Galena, IL and other Tri State areas.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Ted Murray Dr. Kristen Berning, or Dr. Alexia Oetken please call 563-556-2711 or contact us online.

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Celebrating 10 years Exceptional Dentistry

August 11th, 2015

Exceptional Dentistry celebrating

During this month of August 2015, we are celebrating 10 years at our current office location: 4200 Asbury Road in Dubuque, Iowa.IMG_4796

The history of Exceptional Dentistry

Dr. Ted Murray graduated from University of Iowa College of Dentistry in 1977.  He completed a one year General Practice Residency at the Veteran’s Hospital in Iowa City.  He then began working as a dentist in Dubuque in 1978.  In the early 2000s, as dental technology continued to advance, Dr. Ted Murray began to plan a new space where he could deliver advanced dental care in a state of the art dental office.

His dream became a reality when the new office opened in August 2005.  The new office would offer a new, brighter look with more room for technology.  There would be more comforts for patients including larger treatment rooms with big windows, a coffee and beverage station, and two private consultation rooms.

Waiting

Then one year later, Dr. Ted Murray’s daughter, Dr. Kristen (Murray) Berning joined the Exceptional Dentistry dental team.  She graduated from the University of Iowa College of Dentistry in 2006.  The new office allowed space for both Dr. Ted Murray and Dr. Kristen Berning to deliver exceptional dental care to our patients.

Then in 2014, we were excited to add another family dentist to our family office: Dr. Alexia (Murray) Oetken, Dr. Ted Murray’s youngest daughter.  She graduated from the University of Iowa College of Dentistry in 2013.  She then worked in a private dental office in the Kansas City Metro area for one year, before she moved back to the Tri-State Area.

Exceptional Dentistry, Exceptional Care

Ten years have passed quickly and we have continued to grow.  We currently have 3 full time hygienists to see the growing number of patients who choose our office for their dental home.   We see patients of all ages.   We continue to add new technology that allows us to take exceptional care of our patients.  We offer a variety of dental procedures including sedation dentistry, cosmetic dentistry, pediatric dentistry, cosmetic braces, Invisalign, ZOOM Teeth whitening, and dental implants.

Landmarks such as this ten year anniversary are a great time to be thankful.  We are so thankful for our amazing, unstoppable team members for helping us improve the health of the smiles in our community- we could never do it without them.  Each day our team members bring positive attitudes, energy, a willing to learn, and a desire to serve our patients.  Our team takes care of so many details.  We are also very thankful for our patients…  for choosing us and trusting us as their dental family.  The combination of all of these things: a state of the art office, an excellent dental team, and amazing patients, have allowed us to do our best every day.  Thank YOU!

Exceptional Dentistry

Exceptional Dentistry provides complete family, cosmetic, tooth whitening, implant, orthodontic, and sedation dental care at 4200 Asbury Road, Dubuque, IA 52002 and serves the Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Dubuque, IA and Galena, IL areas.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Ted Murray or Dr. Kristen Berning, or Dr. Alexia Oetken please call 563-556-2711 or contact us online.

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Dubuque Dentist Dr. Berning AGD mastership award

June 22nd, 2015

Dubuque, IA Dentist Receives AGD Mastership Award

The Academy of General Dentistry (AGD) is pleased to announce that Dr. Kristen Berning, DDS, MAGD, of Dubuque, IA, received the AGD Mastership Award during the 2015 annual meeting, which took place June 18 to 21 in San Francisco.

agd mastership award, dubuque dentist, dr. berning

The Mastership Award is the AGD’s highest honor and one of the most respected designations within the profession. To earn this award, Dr. Berning passed the fellowship exam and completed 1,100 hours of dental continuing education in 16 specific categories, including at least 400 hands-on participation hours.

As a AGD Mastership Award recipient, Dr. Berning joins more than 2,200 active AGD Masters who have gone above and beyond the basic requirements to care for their patients’ oral health.  Only 1% of the 38,000 AGD members have achieved this coveted award.  It demonstrates a commitment to being well rounded in all areas of dentistry, in order to provide up-to-date and comprehensive dental care to our patients.

“This award requires an extraordinary amount of time and effort,” says AGD Immediate Past President W. Carter Brown, DMD, FAGD. “Dr. Berning should be commended for her unflagging commitment to continuing education, which allows her to provide the best possible dental care and oral health education to her patients.”

Dr. Berning graduated from the University of Iowa College of Dentistry in 2006 and currently practices dentistry with her father, Dr. Ted Murray, DDS, MAGD and her sister, Dr. Alexia Murray, at Exceptional Dentistry on 4200 Asbury Road in Dubuque, IA.   Her father achieved his AGD mastership award in 1995.  Our office demonstrates a commitment to the long term dental health of our patients through our pursuit of extensive continuing education.   

 

Exceptional Dentistry provides complete family, cosmetic, tooth whitening, implant, orthodontic, and sedation dental care at 4200 Asbury Road, Dubuque, IA 52002 and serves the Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Dubuque, IA and Galena, IL areas.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Ted Murray or Dr. Kristen Berning, or Dr. Alexia Murray please call 563-556-2711 or contact us online.

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Dubuque Dentist Dental Hygiene

June 4th, 2015

Welcome, Traci!

 Exceptional Dentistry, Dubuque Dentist, Update

We would like to introduce, Traci, a  dental hygienist and new team member in our Dubuque Office.   She joined our team in May and we are so happy to have her with us.

dubuque dentist

Traci began her career as a dental hygienist in 2008 after graduating from Madison Area Technical College. Prior to becoming a dental hygienist she graduated from the dental assisting program at Western Technical College. Traci joined our team in 2015 with over 7 years of experience working in the dental field. “My favorite part about being a dental hygienist is building a patient’s confidence. It is very gratifying to see patients sparkle with confidence after leaving the dental office knowing they achieved their desired smile. I’m very excited to be part of the Exceptional Dentistry team, working beside great dentists, and using leading edge technology.”  In her spare time she enjoys traveling, cooking, spending time with family and friends, and being active.

Traci has a very sweet personality and does a great job comforting her patients.  She is truly enthusiastic about her work, has excellent attention to detail, and enjoys always learning more.  She has a lot of experience working with all stages of gingivitis and periodontal disease, and she has helped many patients keep their teeth and improve their overall health.  Patients have already been complimenting her on her thorough care and kind approach!

Exceptional Dentistry provides complete family, cosmetic, tooth whitening, implant, orthodontic, and sedation dental care at 4200 Asbury Road, Dubuque, IA 52002 and serves the Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Dubuque, IA and Galena, IL areas.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Ted Murray or Dr. Kristen Berning, or Dr. Alexia Murray please call 563-556-2711 or contact us online.

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Dubuque Dental Implant Dentists

October 21st, 2014

Dubuque Dentists complete Dental Implant Education

 

Dr. Alexia Murray and Dr. Ted Murray each recently completed an intensive  one-year surgical Dental Implant Continuum  at the Misch International Implant Institute.  The continum consisted of over 100 hours of education, including lectures and many hands-on workshops.   Both Dr. Ted Murray are Dr. Alexia Murray are currently Misch Fellows as they attended an additional course at the Misch Institute and passed a written exam to earn fellowship status.

The Misch Institute was established in 1984 by Dr. Carl Misch to elevate the standard of care in implant dentistry.  Dr. Carl Misch and the Institute are world renown leaders in implant education.   Dr. Carl Misch has earned many postgraduate honors for his extensive research, publications, lectures, and patents.  He is well respected for his dedication to implant education.  He is the author of the #1, #2 and #4 bestselling books in the history of dentistry.  This year, Dr. Carl Misch received the 2014 Distinguished Service Award.  This is the highest honor conferred by the American Dental Association’s Board of Trustees.   The field of dentistry has benefitted and grown tremendously due to his exceptional wisdom and dedication.

Pictured below are Dr. Ted Murray, Dr. Carl Misch, and Dr. Alexia Murray:

Dental Implants

 

Dubuque Dental Implants

Dubuque Implant Dentist

 

What is a dental implant?

A dental implant is a replacement for a missing tooth.  It is usually made out of titanium and it is surgically placed into the bone where the missing tooth is.  Dental implants can be used to replace single teeth, multiple teeth, or as anchors for removable partial dentures or complete dentures.  Dental implants are considered the standard of care for replacing missing teeth.  They help to preserve the bone.  They look, feel, and function like natural teeth.

Dr. Ted Murray, Dr. Kristen Berning, and Dr. Alexia Murray at Exceptional Dentistry are committed to providing our patients the latest in dental implant treatment options.  Our office has an  i-CAT® Cone Beam 3D scanner used for implant treatment planning.  This system allows us to take crisp, clear 3D images of teeth, gums and underlying jaw structure, making it easier for us to diagnose dental conditions.

Pictured below is a dental implant case by Dr. Ted Murray:

20130208-094032

Exceptional Dentistry provides complete family, cosmetic, tooth whitening, implant, orthodontic, and sedation dental care at 4200 Asbury Road, Dubuque, IA 52002 and serves the Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Dubuque, IA and Galena, IL areas.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Ted Murray or Dr. Kristen Berning, or Dr. Alexia Murray please call 563-556-2711 or contact us online.

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Sedation Dentistry

September 18th, 2014

Dubuque Dentist- Sedation Dentistry

Dr. Ted Murray, a Dubuque Dentist, has been offering sedation dentistry for several years.  Sedation dentistry provides relief to people who have been avoiding the dentist for years– even decades– out of fear and anxiety.

Sedation dentistry is safe, effective and proving to be a smile-saver for millions of Americans.

Medical science is taking note of links between poor dental hygiene and serious illnesses– such as cardiovascular disease and even some cancers.   That is why it is so important for people in the Tri State area to know that they no longer have to fear dental treatment such as root canals, crowns, fillings, dental anesthetic, and deep cleanings.  Sedation dentistry allows a patient to relax during an appointment.  Once a patient is relaxed, many dental procedures can be completed.

Types of Sedation Dentistry

Both oral sedation and IV sedation are offered in our Dubuque Dental office.  Oral sedation involves taking a pill that will relax a person for the duration of his or her appointment.  IV sedation allows for the precise delivery of medication through an IV placed at the beginning of the appointment.  IV sedation is fast-acting and can be adjusted quickly according to the patient’s needs.

Charlie, pictured below, is a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist who provides IV sedation in our office.  He does a great job putting patients at ease for their dental appointments.

Sedation Dentistry

Once the patient is relaxed, Dr. Ted Murray is able to complete many dental procedures in one visit.  A sedated patient will have little to no memory of his or her appointment.

If anxiety is affecting your dental health or appearance, sedation dentistry may be the answer to making your smile dreams come true. Techniques used in sedation dentistry are safe and effective in eliminating dental anxiety.  Then you can relax completely and have a pain-free visit.

Exceptional Dentistry provides complete family, cosmetic, tooth whitening, implant, orthodontic, and sedation dental care at 4200 Asbury Road, Dubuque, IA 52002 and serves the Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Dubuque, IA and Galena, IL areas.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Ted Murray or Dr. Kristen Berning, or Dr. Alexia Murray please call 563-556-2711 or contact us online.

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Dubuque Dentist Welcomes New Team Member

September 10th, 2014

Welcome, Brittany!

We are excited to introduce, Brittany, a hygienist and new team member in our Dubuque Dental Office.   She joined our office in June and it was a seamless transition!

Dubuque Dentist welcomes new team member

Brittany worked her first four years in the dental community as a dental assistant. During this time, she took great pride in helping patients with their dental care. Those first years led her to branch out and find her true passion in dental hygiene. Brittany graduated from Hawkeye Community College in May 2014 with an associate of applied science degree in dental hygiene.  She feels extremely fortunate to join such an “exceptional” team that truly cares about their patient’s needs.  “I sincerely believe there is no better place for me to utilize my skills and work with the latest technology than Exceptional Dentistry.”  In her spare time, Brittany enjoys cheering on the New York Yankees and the Iowa Hawkeyes, being active, completing crafts, and spending time with family and friends.

We are excited to have Brittany as a member of our team.   She has a very kind, sweet, gentle demeanor and she genuinely cares for her patients.  She has a local anesthesia permit and can also administer nitrous oxide during appointments, if needed for patient comfort.  Brittany is also laser certified and can use the laser to complement treatment of gingivitis and periodontal disease.  She enjoys working with people of all ages.

Exceptional Dentistry provides complete family, cosmetic, tooth whitening, implant, orthodontic, and sedation dental care at 4200 Asbury Road, Dubuque, IA 52002 and serves the Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Dubuque, IA and Galena, IL areas.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Ted Murray or Dr. Kristen Berning, or Dr. Alexia Murray please call 563-556-2711 or contact us online.

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