At Knoxville’s Dental, we have received advanced training for, and are committed to the effective treatment of the destructive effects of occlusal disease. We use a novel and very beneficial consultation presentation program called BiteFX™ that uses friendly animations to explain problems in a way that makes sense to the patient. With BiteFX, our patients quickly understand complicated concepts that were previously difficult and time consuming to explain. We can also combine photos of your teeth with the BiteFX animations to give you an even better appreciation of our treatment recommendations.
See a video demonstration of the BiteFX program.


Although all of your teeth can suffer decay, your back teeth are particularly susceptible to cavities. Food and bacteria can easily accumulate in the deep crevices on the top chewing surfaces. As the acid eats away at your dental enamel, cavities will form. Dental sealants at our Knoxville practice are one of the most effective ways to prevent decay in your molars. Dr. Stephen K. Malone or Dr. Michael J. Costa, Jr. will apply these thin plastic coatings, and they will form a protective shield for your teeth. Frequently a pediatric treatment, sealants can benefit adults, as well.

The Importance of Sealants

Cavities develop when food and bacteria remain inside your mouth. Sugars and bacteria interact with one another to form acid, and the acid will erode your enamel. As the outer layers of your teeth begin to wear away, the bacteria will penetrate through the deeper layers, forming cavities. Decay is especially prevalent in the back teeth (premolars and molars). The deep fissures on the top chewing surfaces can easily trap food and bacteria. Even with routine brushing, tiny food particles will often lurk in these areas. Sealants form a barrier over the top of your teeth. Even if food remains trapped in these spaces, bacteria and acid will not be able to penetrate the lower levels of your teeth.

Application of Sealants

This treatment is quick and comfortable. Your teeth will be thoroughly cleaned and dried. A solution will be applied to allow the sealant to adhere strongly. Then, the sealant solution will be applied. This is a clear or tooth-colored plastic coating that dries quickly, creating a near-impenetrable barrier. In most cases, sealants can last 10 years or more. In many cases, sealants can be reapplied if they start to wear off. At each routine cleaning and exam, your hygienist and dentist will check to see if the coating is still intact.

Are You a Candidate for Sealants?

Dr. Malone and Dr. Costa most frequently apply dental sealants on children’s teeth. They will typically recommend sealants as soon as a young patient’s adult molars first come in. However, the treatment can benefit patients of all ages. If you are an adult with healthy teeth and no existing fillings, you may qualify for sealants. In some cases, sealants may be recommended for baby teeth. For example, if your child has unusually deep grooves in his or her teeth, sealants can reduce the higher risk for decay.

Contact our Knoxville office to find out if sealants are right for you or your child. We proudly serve patients in the greater Knoxville area, including Powell, Karns, Farragut, Seymour, Maryville, and Oak Ridge.

Dentists Dr. Stephen Malone and Dr. Michael J. Costa, Jr. of Knoxville, TN, take pride in customizing the highest quality dentures and providing alternative denture solutions. They have the expertise and experience to provide a wide variety of dentures for patients with missing teeth. In addition to full and partial removable dentures, they offer dental implant supported and dental implant retained options for better-than-ever function and long-lasting results.

Because dental technology keeps advancing, if you have lost or are about to lose all of your teeth on the lower arch, a removable denture is no longer your best option for a high quality of life. In fact, implant supported lower dentures are now the standard of care. As you read about the various types of dentures below, you will understand the benefits far out weight the cost.

“Patients come to me desperate to find a solution so they can eat the foods they have always loved and can live a normal life,” said Dr. Malone, in a recent interview. “Imagine sitting down to Thanksgiving Dinner with all of your family around you and not being able to keep your prosthetic teeth in place long enough to comfortably chew the turkey or laugh at the family’s jokes. You’d do just about anything to have your teeth back. The good news is that with today’s dental implant options, we can find a solution that works for you.”

Traditional Removable Dentures

Today’s custom fabricated dentures are nearly undetectable. A “full” denture is used when all of the teeth are missing on the upper or lower jaw. Full dentures are made of an acrylic plastic base that is colored to look like gum tissue, and they support a full set of prosthetic teeth. Traditionally, a full denture is held in the mouth by forming a seal with the gums. “Partial” dentures also are usually made with an acrylic plastic base, and they support prosthetic teeth to fill gaps due to missing teeth. Traditionally, partial dentures are held in the mouth by using clasps and rests that are attached to the adjacent natural teeth. Both full and partial traditional dentures are “removable” by the patient for cleaning and while asleep at night.

If you have worn a removable denture for a while, the bone tissue under the denture has started to resorb, the bone has decreased in size and changed in shape. The gum tissue overlying the bone has conformed to the new contour of the bone. The result is a denture that no long fits ideally. The movement of the denture can be quite frustrating…even uncomfortable. The adhesion of your denture may be inadequate, contributing to slippage. Changes in your bite can affect your jaw joints and muscles, adding to discomfort.

Let us improve your denture solution and improve your life! We are well known throughout Knoxville for finding optimal implant and denture solutions for patients who have given up hope.

Implant-Supported Dentures

Today, both full and partial full dentures can be supported on dental implants that are surgically placed in the jawbone. These “implant-supported” dentures are snapped into place on the implants using a ball and socket type of attachments or a metal bar that runs along the gum line and on which the denture rests and is clipped. Implant supported dentures are designed to be removed by the patient for cleaning and can be removed before sleep.

Implant-supported dentures have advantages.

The main advantages of implant-supported dentures are increased biting strength and non-slippage, which provide for increased comfort, easier eating, and improved social confidence. This enhanced stability also results in longer lasting dentures. What’s more, mini implants can be used with implant-supported dentures, and each miniature implant acts like a tooth root, not only supporting the denture but also stimulating bone growth. This bone growth helps preserve the natural facial structure.

Implant-supported denture treatment is easy.

Mini implants can be easily inserted in your jawbone using a local anesthetic. There are no sutures, pain or months of post-operative healing prior to receiving your denture. In the first treatment appointment for an implant-supported denture, impressions of your mouth will be made, and we will schedule you for a second appointment. Between the two appointments, we will design the denture to be fabricated by our preferred, expert lab technician. At the second appointment, your mini implants, denture attachments, and the denture will be placed—all in one appointment.

Fixed Hybrid Dentures

Hybrid (All-on-4) dentures are a “fixed” alternative to traditional or implant-supported full dentures. They are called “All-on-4” because edentulous patients can have an upper or lower full denture fixed on as few as four dental implants. These fixed dentures cannot be removed by the patient, are worn during sleep, and are cleaned like natural teeth with special attention to cleaning under the edge where the denture meets your gum tissue. Depending on the circumstances, sometimes more than four implants are used in a jaw for more predictable results.

A hybrid denture can be fixed on both jaws or on just one jaw, depending on the needs and desire of the patient. This is an especially desirable type of denture for the lower jaw where a traditional full denture has less adhesion and the tongue easily dislodges it. Hybrid dentures are the first choice for many patients because they do not need to be removed and inserted by the patient, they provide the ultimate stability, and they are the most lifelike in function and care.

Your satisfaction with your denture is priority #1.

We want you to be totally happy with your denture. With so many choices and considerations, Dr. Malone and Dr. Costa spend a lot of time with patients, explaining the options and helping them consider what is right for them. We aim to help you learn about your choices and make treatment decisions that are right for you, so if you need time to think or want to bring a family member with you to learn about the options and help you decide, we support this. If you want a second opinion, we understand. If you need a second opinion, we can do this as well.

We spend time making sure the design of your denture will optimally fit, function and appear naturally beautiful. For all our dentures, we use the latest, highest quality dental materials, ensuring the most beautiful esthetics and long-lasting results. No matter which type of denture you choose from among those appropriate for you, you will be given detailed information on what to expect and do as you get used to wearing your denture. And, we will have you return to our office soon after placement of your denture to evaluate if any adjustments are needed for comfort.

We strive to make dental treatment affordable. If you have a dental benefits plan, keep in mind that your plan may cover some or all of the cost of your denture(s). We also offer financing options, including interest-free financing for up to 12 or 24 months.

Schedule Your Initial Denture Consultation Today!

Learn what is possible for your circumstances, ask questions, and begin the process of deciding which type of denture is most appropriate for you.

Dr. Michael Costa and Dr. Stephen Malone continuously train in the use of the latest technology and scientific (evidence-based) techniques for helping his patients. The Platelet Rich Fibrin (PRF) technique is an example of how Knoxville Smiles invests in the training and technology that will enhance our patient experience. When the PRF technique is used as part of your oral surgery procedure, platelet rich fibrin will speed your tissue recovery, and minimize post-surgery discomfort.

What is PRF?

Blood platelets contain hundreds of proteins called growth factors which are very important in the healing of tissue. These growth factors stimulate the stem cells to produce new host tissues as quickly as possible.

Platelet Rich Fibrin (PRF) can be created from your own blood. PRF has been widely used in medicine for over a decade for such things as heart surgery, orthopedics, oral and maxillofacial surgery, plastic surgery, and dermatology. We are proud to be among the first dentists to offer it in Tennessee.

When is PRF primarily used?

Why do we recommend PRF?

  1. Your own blood is used to encourage a natural healing process which helps eliminate the risk of infection and thus reduce post-surgery complications.
  2. Healing is accelerated due to increased tissue formation from the growth factors.
  3. Patients report a much greater degree of comfort immediately after their procedure.
  4. This procedure is both safe and efficient for helping the body repair itself by using its own natural resources. Since the blood used will come from the patient’s own body, disease transmission is not a factor.

How is PRF created?

A sample of your blood is drawn and then a plasma membrane is created by centrifuging your blood. During centrifuging, the membrane becomes enriched with your growth factors. The membrane is then placed over or in the area of the surgical site to stimulate and speed up the healing process. The fibrin may also be mixed with bone grafts to help stimulate bone formation

Do I have a choice?

Yes. You will be fulling informed about this treatment option, and it will not be part of your treatment unless you give your informed consent.

Learn more about dental implant treatment, bone grafting, sinus lifts, and tooth extraction at Knoxville Smiles.

Dr. Stephen K. Malone and Dr. Michael J. Costa are two of Knoxville’s foremost dentists for solving complex oral health problems. Full mouth reconstruction at our Knoxville practice will enable you to be the confident person you want to be with comfortable full function and a naturally attractive smile. This personalized treatment will allow you to combine several restorative procedures to replace missing teeth, repair compromised teeth, and address your unique needs. Our dentists use x-rays and compassionate guidance to help you choose the right procedures for your smile and dental health. In some cases, they may also recommend cosmetic treatment to achieve optimal results. Contact our office today to learn more and to begin developing your treatment plan.

What Is a Full Mouth Reconstruction?

Your full mouth reconstruction will be custom-designed just for you. By combining various procedures, you can fully restore your smile and dental function. There are numerous procedures Dr. Malone may recommend, based on your needs: periodontal treatment to combat gum infection, bite splint therapy to treat TMD and stabilize your jaw joints, orthodontics to align your teeth, root canals to remove infection from tooth roots, crowns to restore damage teeth, removable prosthetics or dental implants to replace missing teeth, tooth colored composite fillings, bonding, veneers, equilibration (modifying the tops of your teeth so they come together in an even, balanced bite) and more. You may additionally benefit from cosmetic teeth whitening, tooth crown lengthening and gum re-contouring.

Creating Your Treatment Plan

Dr. Malone or Dr. Costa will work hand-in-hand with you to design your full mouth reconstruction and cosmetic restoration. Understanding the connection between oral and physical health, he takes a holistic approach to restorative care. He will not only repair dental damage, but he also will address your dental alignment, jaw health, and the balance of your bite. He will spend considerable time planning your treatment using casts of your mouth and the latest knowledge and technology, and then explain his recommended plan and any treatment options. You will be fully informed prior to accepting treatment and deciding on alternative treatments. Your concerns will be listened to and addressed. You will be part of the planning every step of the way.

Benefits of Full Mouth Reconstruction

Full mouth reconstruction can have significant advantages for your overall health and quality of life. First, reconstruction can prevent further tooth loss and dental damage. If you include implants as part of your treatment, they can also prevent jawbone degeneration. Second, reconstruction can restore your dental function, allowing you to eat, speak, and smile freely. By repairing your bite alignment and balance, reconstruction can also reduce your risk for bruxism and TMJ Disorder. Finally, the combined procedures can enhance your appearance, restore your self-confidence, and end the embarrassment of dental damage. We believe every patient should be offered the highest standard of care and that you are a special person deserving of comfort, health, full function, and confident appearance. We believe your dentistry should last, and it can if achieved through a comprehensive plan to solve all underlying problems.

Schedule Your Full Mouth Reconstruction Consultation

To learn more about full mouth reconstruction and to find out which procedures might be right for you, schedule a consultation with Dr. Malone or Dr. Michael J. Costa, Jr. today. Oftentimes, extensive dentistry, like full mouth reconstruction, can be done in affordable phases or financed via your credit card or Care Credit. Our dentists provide restorative treatment to patients from Powell, Karns, Farragut, Seymour, Maryville, Oak Ridge and the surrounding communities.

At Knoxville Smiles in Knoxville, TN, our dentists and registered dental hygienists genuinely care about their patients. We gently but thoroughly maintain periodontal health through accurate diagnosis, prophylactic cleanings, and expert treatment of any gum inflammation that occurs.

In the case of mild to moderate gum disease we will focus on eliminating the bacterial infection with more frequent dental cleanings in our office and instruction on the most appropriate oral home care.

If you gum inflammation is advanced and gum pockets are deep, we will recommend a deeper cleaning called “scaling and root planing (SRP).” Your gum tissue will be numbed with local anesthetic while the hygienist removes bacterial plaque and hardened calculus below the gum line and then smooths the dental enamel encasing dental roots. A topical antibiotic will be applied. This will eliminate harmful oral bacteria and allow your gum tissue to heal. You will need continuing excellent oral hygiene to prevent plaque from redeveloping to the extent that your gum tissue is once again harmed.

Gum disease should not be neglected.

Gum disease is a progressive condition that begins with mild gum inflammation and can progress and become a significant infection of the gum and bone tissues that support teeth, leading to painful tooth decay, tooth loosening, and tooth loss. But even more is at stake. The presence of gum disease means that bad oral bacteria are now circulating through your blood stream to all organs of your body, and as a result, your body is fighting systemic inflammation that can start or worsen systemic diseases such as cardiovascular heart disease and diabetes.

Every time you come for a dental cleaning and oral exam in our Knoxville dental practice, we will be thoroughly examining you for signs of gum disease. If you are overdue for a cleaning and/or exam, we are here to serve you and make sure your oral health is maintained.

Our hygienists and dentists have the training, knowledge, skill and judgment to diagnosis, advise and treat you appropriately. We understand how easily gum disease develops and can promptly provide you with the compassionate and gentle care you need. If gum disease has caused significant gum recession around certain teeth, we can also provide gum grafting treatment here in the comfort of our office, once active gum disease has been eliminated.

Knoxville Smiles offers the full range of dental services under our one roof. We invite you to call and schedule an appointment today!

A gum graft is a procedure that adds gum tissue around your teeth or dental implants. This is one of the oral surgery procedures Dr. Michael Costa performs routinely in the comfort of our Knoxville, TN office. This treatment can be done with local anesthetic, and we offer patients the option of conscious oral sedation.

Gum grafts are commonly recommended where gum inflammation has caused excessive gum recession; where nature, orthodontic treatment, implant treatment or another restorative treatment has left the gum tissue too thin or inadequate to protect a tooth’s roots; and where more gum tissue is needed to achieve cosmetic goals.

If you elect to have this procedure, your own gum tissue will be taken from an area in your mouth where it is abundant and it will be sutured onto gum tissue at the site where it is needed. Dr. Costa may recommend Platelet Rich Fibrin (PRF) to promote faster healing and EXPAREL® to anesthetize the area for up to three days. The surgical areas will be covered with a dressing. It will take around two weeks for the graft to heal, and then the sutures will be removed. With today’s dental technology and materials, we can easily perform these procedures while you are completely relaxed and numb — and you will experience minimal post-operative discomfort.

Patients are delighted with the results. Your new gum tissue will look naturally beautiful, stop gum recession, and help restore health where gums have been affected by gum disease. Grafts may decrease tooth root sensitivity by covering formerly exposed root surfaces.

The entire team at Knoxville smiles will strive to give you a personalized and wonderful experience, each time you visit. When oral surgery is the focus of the visit, you can be sure that making you safe and comfortable are our highest priority. After your surgery, Dr. Costa will call you at home that evening and continue monitoring the progress of your healing. If you have any questions or concerns, Dr. Costa is only a phone call away.

Dr. Stephen K. Malone of Knoxville, TN is a certified Invisalign® provider. Many Knoxville teens require orthodontic treatment, but they dread the thought of metal braces for both aesthetic and comfort reasons. Invisalign Teen® can correct most of the same issues as traditional braces. However, the clear aligner trays are more discreet, comfortable, and convenient than other orthodontic options.

Watch Our Video, Knoxville Teen Invisalign Procedure Explained

Invisalign Teen®: The Basics

If you choose Invisalign Teen for your child, Dr. Malone will take digital images of the teeth and upl, where experienced lab technicians will craft a series of custom trays called “aligners”. Each aligner is shaped slightly differently. They will put a gentle pressure on your teen’s teeth. Approximately every two weeks, your teen will switch to a new set of aligners (a new tray for the upper teeth and a new tray for the lower teeth). Treatment will be completed In 9 to 24 months, depending on the amount of movement required and the number of hours per day your teen wears the aligners.

Invisalign Teen® is specially designed to help teens learn to take responsibility for their treatment. Each tray is equipped with unique blue dots, which will appear only when it is time to switch to a new tray. The dots will serve as a visible reminder for both you and your child. In addition, Invisalign Teen provides up to six replacements for missing aligners.

Candidates for Invisalign Teen®

In the past, dentists only recommended Invisalign® for patients with cosmetic issues. Today, however, the treatment is appropriate for patients with more dramatic forms of misalignment. If your teen has a mild to moderate overbite, underbite, crossbite, or open bite, Invisalign Teen may be a good option. Dr. Malone may refer you to an orthodontist if your child has particularly severe orthodontic issues. In addition, as a candidate for Invisalign Teen, she or he should be responsible enough to maintain the treatment. It is important to wear the trays about 22 hours a day and switch aligners on schedule.

6 Reasons to Choose Invisalign Teen®

If Dr. Malone determines that your child is a candidate for Invisalign Teen, there are a number of reasons to consider the treatment. The advantages include:

  1. Subtlety: As the name suggests, Invisalign Teen aligners are practically invisible. This can be very advantageous, especially if your older teen is preparing for graduation, college applications, and other major milestones.
  2. Comfort: Invisalign Teen aligners will exert pressure on your teen’s teeth. However, the force will typically be much gentler than that needed for traditional braces. In addition, technicians will craft the aligners from smooth plastic, which will not irritate the lips or cheeks.
  3. Improved oral hygiene: Your teen will be able to remove Invisalign Teen trays to brush her or his teeth. Therefore, your child can maintain better dental care, resulting in a reduced risk for decay and discoloration.
  4. Fewer trips to the dentist: When your teen has traditional braces, she or he will need to visit the orthodontist as often as once a month to have the braces tightened. While Invisalign Teen certainly requires follow-ups, you will need to visit the dentist less frequently.
  5. Minimal effects on your teen’s life: Traditional wire and bracket braces can impact your teen’s ability to enjoy favorite foods. They can also pose a risk if your teen is an athlete or a musician. Comfortable, discreet Invisalign Teen will allow your child to enjoy all favorite activities without disruption.
  6. Effective: Most importantly, Invisalign Teen is highly effective. Your child will enjoy a more stunning smile and, in many cases, a reduced risk for decay, bruxism, and TMJ Disorder.

Find Out If Your Child Is a Candidate for Treatment

Learn more about Invisalign Teen® and why it can be a great option for your child. Contact Dr. Malone’s office to book a consultation.

Like many patients, you may long for a straighter smile and want all the advantages of clear aligner technology, principally almost invisibility, smooth surfaces that do not irritate the soft tissue of the mouth, and removability for eating, drinking and cleaning your teeth. Fortunately, Invisalign® at our Knoxville practice may be the solution. Invisalign® is an innovative orthodontic treatment that uses clear, personally-fabricated trays to straighten your smile. The comfortable and effective treatment can enhance both your appearance and your dental function at no more cost and taking no more time than traditional braces. Contact Dr. Stephen K. Malone to learn more about clear braces and to determine your candidacy for treatment.

How Does Invisalign® Work?

When you undergo Invisalign® treatment, Dr. Malone will take impressions and pictures of your smile. He will display the images on a chairside monitor. Then he can manipulate the pictures to design your unique aligner trays and to show you how your teeth will shift during the treatment. Technicians at an Invisalign® lab will fabricate the trays and send them back to our office.

Your first tray will simply help you adjust to the feel of your aligners in your mouth. Then you will begin to work through the series of aligners. Each tray will exert a mathematically determined and gentle force on your teeth. Approximately every two weeks, you will begin wearing a new tray. Typically, in 9 to 18 months, you will see the final results of your treatment.

Are You a Candidate for Invisalign®?

Invisalign® can straighten crooked teeth and close small gaps in your smile. In the past, the treatment was primarily intended for cosmetic patients. However, thanks to recent innovations, Invisalign® can make health-related improvements as well. Clear braces may be a good choice if you suffer from an overbite, underbite, crossbite, or another form of malocclusion. With your straighter, balanced bite, you will also have a lower risk for dental damage, bruxism, and TMJ Disorder.
Although Invisalign® is usually suitable for malocclusion patients, if you have severe misalignment, it may not be the best option. Dr. Malone will thoroughly examine your oral structure and health history to determine whether this treatment is right for you. Alternatively, he may recommend ClearCorrectTM. This treatment is very similar to Invisalign®, and the dentist will help you select the right option for your needs.

Why Choose Invisalign®?

Subtlety is perhaps the most obvious reason to choose clear braces. The trays are virtually undetectable, even at a close distance. However, cosmetics are not the only advantage. Most patients agree that Invisalign® is more comfortable than traditional braces. They exert a gentler force on your teeth, and, unlike brackets and wires, the trays will not irritate the inside of your mouth. Additionally, because the trays are removable, you can eat a more varied diet. You can also care for your teeth more easily. Therefore, you will face a lower risk for decay and discoloration while wearing braces. Most importantly, Invisalign® is effective, and it can improve your health and self-confidence for life.

Schedule an Orthodontic Consultation

Find out if Invisalign® or ClearCorrectTM is the optimal solution for your smile. Contact Knoxville Dentist today to schedule your first appointment with Dr. Malone. Along with his associate, Dr. Erin L. Noble, he treats patients from Powell, Karns, Farragut, Seymour, Maryville, Oak Ridge and the surrounding communities.

Read more information to find out why you should choose Dr. Stephen Malone for your Invisalign® treatment

For a textbook definition of Invisalign®, read this article.

We are the Knoxville, TN dental practice designed to serve all your dental needs. And, we offer exceptional expertise with Invisalign® clear aligner technology. If you have begun to consider getting your teeth straightened or having your bite corrected, now is the time to look into affordable, effective orthodontic care from Knoxville Smiles.

Invisalign aligners offer you:

The comfortable and effective treatment can enhance both your appearance and your dental function at no more cost and taking no more time than traditional braces.

If you choose Invisalign we will take digital images of the teeth and a series of custom trays (aligners) will be fabricated. Each aligner is shaped slightly differently. They will put a gentle pressure on the teeth. Approximately every two weeks, you will switch to a new set of aligners (a new tray for the upper teeth and a new tray for the lower teeth). Treatment will be completed in 9 to 24 months, depending on the amount of movement required and the number of hours per day you wear the aligners.

Teenage patients can enjoy the benefits of the Invisalign Teen® technology system. Invisalign Teen® is specially designed to help teens learn to take responsibility for their treatment. Each tray is equipped with unique blue dots, which will appear only when it is time to switch to a new tray. The dots will serve as a visible reminder for both you and your child. In addition, Invisalign Teen provides up to six replacements for missing aligners.

At Knoxville Smiles, we also offer ClearCorrect™ Aligners.

Call us to schedule a complimentary initial consultation to learn more about clear braces and the most appropriate orthodontic treatment for you.

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