By Amy Palumbo-LeClaire
Courtesy The Yankee XPress
Steadfast Family Dental is a full-service, brand-new dentist facility located on the second floor of Auburn’s Galaxy Pass building. Owned and operated by Benjamin Tubo, otherwise known as Dr. Ben, the new business is enhanced by digital dentistry, which denotes a highly detailed, efficient, and technologically astute practice for assessing and treating a patient’s unique dental needs. Such progressive practices, combined with the expertise of a highly trained professional,
make for a worthwhile trip to the dentist’s office.
The Boston University post-graduate comes to the dentist chair with a mind for science, and a curiosity for art. “There was always a lot of talk about science at the dinner table which piqued my interest in the field early on. My dad was involved in a lot of cancer research. I wanted more direct patient-doctor interaction. It’s fun for me to be able to see the change in a person’s mouth while helping to restore confidence.
“There’s a lot of art in helping a person to like his or her smile. I like that puzzle of trying to mimic nature in an artistic way so that everything blends. Our back teeth are the most important. Making sure that one’s back and front teeth work together is a puzzle. The more back teeth you start to lose, the more you use your front teeth for jobs you shouldn’t have to. We try and help patients understand what the consequences down the road are without preventive care. It costs more money to remedy problems later that could have been prevented. A natural tooth will always last longer.”
Highly advanced digital equipment, such as the CEREC, assists Dr. Ben in his quest to complete the puzzles of dental work. For example, crowns, also known as caps, are designed by, first, preparing the tooth to make room for the crown and, next, by using a high definition camera to scan the teeth and make a 3D computer/digital model. In a matter of only a few hours, the
information for the crown is sent to a milling machine where the crown is cut out of a ceramic block, and then matched to the color of the person’s natural teeth to ensure a natural appearance. Finally, the crown is bonded to the prepared tooth. Such procedures avoid the dated practice of a stone impression (made by gooey, cement-like material), a two-week lag time, and
the need for a temporary crown.
Dr. Ben’s advanced equipment, in addition to its ability to provide efficient care, allows him to participate in “guided surgery” which eliminates the need for a patient having to be cut open in order to assess dental needs. Oral implants, for example, are performed with the aid of a 3D x-ray known as a cone beam, the photographs of which are (digitally) turned so that every angle of the tooth, gums, bones, sinuses, and jaw can be scrutinized. As a result, Dr. Ben is able to position the implant with exactness and quality.
Dr. Ben’s standard procedures, such as a prophylactic cleaning, are equally as thorough. He offers patients periodontal scaling and “root planing” in order to extensively clean the outside part of the tooth, where a toothbrush has not been able to reach. For first appointments, he and his assistant also offer the patient one-and-a-half to two hours of time to assess the entire mouth and answer questions. “We make decisions based on what I see. If the patient has a lot of desires, we may make a second appointment. I might study x-rays and find bad things lurking underneath, which we’ll use to discuss options.”
Steadfast dental chairs, an added perk, are designed to conform to a patient’s unique shape. While seated comfortably, Dr. Ben’s patients receive personalized care, which includes goal setting, and the discussion of expectations. Steadfast Family Dental accepts most insurance plans and has savings plans for members who do not have, or want to use insurance. Call them for details at 508-832-8826. They are located at 824 Southbridge Street, Suite 200.