Getting Wise About Wisdom Teeth

There are approximately 10,000,000 wisdom teeth removed each year.  Why is that?
During times of hunting and gathering, jaw bones were long and narrow. In the present day, our jaws have transformed to be both shorter and wider.  It is believed that the jaws found in our ancestors were better suited to grind and decompose hard food items.  In today’s world, we heavily rely on agriculture and farming which creates a softer diet.  Over time, the jaw has conformed to the physical needs of a new diet.
This theory was researched when Von Cramon-Taubadel studied skull specimens from 11 populations around the world.  Five of the groups lived off hunting and gathering while the remaining six groups relied on a farming lifestyle.  It is through this quest of understanding evolution that supported the interactions between culture, farming, and the effects on our evolving anatomy.
Our modern day noggins are now crowded, leading to the misalignment of our teeth, and often the need to remove wisdom teeth. Since jaws of modern societies are now shorter, they “are not big enough to accommodate the size of our teeth,” Von Cramon-Taubadel said.  Periodontal Associates is not surprised that there are an estimated 5 million Americans with braces trying to straighten, align teeth, and fight against the natural progression of crowding.
Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman have to, at times, extract teeth due to this crowding, but a more prominent problem treated at Periodontal Associates caused by orthodontics is gum recession.  When teeth are moved too quickly, the gums can retract and gum grafts are needed to prevent sensitivity and tooth loss.
If you are fighting gum disease or an un-even, painful smile, Dr. Ken Versman, Dr. Doug Heller, and Dr. Eric Beckman can help you.  You can’t fight evolution, so click here to schedule an exam or call (303) 755-4500 to answer all your questions. Remember, gum disease is a sneaky disease as often people do not realize they have it until it reaches a severe state.  At that point, it can result in tooth loss, bone loss, and the need for dental implants.  Don’t let gum disease sneak up on you.  Visit Periodontal Associates in Aurora today.

Link Between Middle-Aged Men and Gum Disease

There are a lot of risk-factors when it comes to getting gum disease.  Some can be genetic and some can be situational (smoking, bad oral health, etc).  When considering some of the causes, according to a new study, age and gender are a part of the list of influences.

More specifically, it could be possible that middle-aged men could be at a higher risk to have gum disease.  They found a higher rate of gum disease with men 45 to 65, who were not active and mostly worked sitting throughout the day, than their younger, more active counterparts.  To be exact, “lazy” middle-aged men are 40% more likely to develop problems with their gum health.

If you think you might have gum disease, check out these 7 signs.  If you have any of the above symptoms, call Dr. Versman, Dr. Heller, and Dr. Beckman as soon as possible at 303-755-4500 to schedule an appointment or use our easy online contact form.

Remember, the earlier you treat periodontal disease, the easier it is to control.

How Much Bacteria is in Your Mouth?

Bacteria can be found everywhere: on your hands, when you touch a doorknob, at a restaurant, in the bathroom, etc.  We sometimes get so caught up worrying about not touching things that carry bacteria that we forget that more than a large cup of bacteria can be found inside you!

More specifically, at any one time there can be up to 6 million bacteria found in your mouth; your mouth is a huge carries for bacteria.  GROSS!  The presence of bacteria in your mouth can cause bad breath and, more importantly, can eat away at your teeth causing cavities, dental infections, and gingivitis.  Even worse, some mouth bacteria can cause heart disease and kidney disease.

Here at Periodontal Associates, we stress the importance of controlling how much bacteria is in you mouth and not letting it get out of hand.  While we understand that bacteria can always be found in your mouth, and some bacteria is even good for you, it is important to maintain a strict hygiene regimen so that you don’t have painful and potentially costly dental issues.   Dr. Ken Versman, Dr. Douglas Heller, and Dr. Eric Beckman  can teach you the proper techniques so that you are knowledgeable.  In addition, it is important to schedule routine dental check-ups with your dentist so that any serious damage can be noticed and prevented.

Dr. Ken Versman, Dr. Douglas Heller, and Dr. Eric Beckman can help you keep your mouth healthy before bacteria does any serious harm.  To schedule your appointment, do not hesitate to call us at (303) 755-4500, clickhere for an appointment, or visit our website at

What is Tooth Sensitivity?


Have you ever taken a bite of something very cold or a sip of something very hot and recoiled in pain? Do you ever wince with discomfort when brushing or flossing? If you answered yes to any of those questions you may have what’s commonly known as “sensitive teeth”. Around 40 million adults in the United States experience tooth sensitivity, according to the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD).

Why do my teeth feel sensitive?

The inside of your tooth is made up of a material called dentin. This dentin contains microscopic tubules filed with nerve endings. A hard outer layer of enamel protects the crown portion of the tooth, while a layer of cementum protects the root. When this dentin becomes hypersensitive it usually means that it’s lost its protective covering of enamel or cementum, and the nerve endings are left exposed to hot, cold, and acidic foods.

What dental issues cause this?

A bevy of things can cause the enamel and cementum to be worn down, including:

  • Brushing too hard or aggressively, or using a hard bristle toothbrush.
  • Tooth erosion from acidic foods or beverages.
  • Gum Recession
  • And Grinding your teeth

Periodontal disease- an infection of the gums and bones supporting the teeth-may also be to blame. If left untreated, gum tissues can separate from the teeth and form pockets that can house a plethora of bacteria. This can continue until the bone and other supporting structures are destroyed, exposing the root surfaces of the teeth.

How do I treat my sensitive teeth?

Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman of Periodontal Associates in the Denver and Aurora, CO area recommend that at the point of Periodontal Disease, you should immediately schedule an appointment with your periodontist to take measures to combat it. If not, you could suffer from many other complications that could arise. However, if your teeth are just experiencing sensitivity, other measures may be:

  • Desensitizing toothpaste
  • A fluoride gel or special desensitizing agents
  • A filling, crown, inlay, or bonding, depending on the cause of sensitivity.

If gum tissue has been lost, Drs. Versman, Heller, and Beckman say they might recommend a surgical gum graft to cover the root and reduce sensitivity. In severe cases of sensitivity that can’t be treated by other means, your periodontist might recommend a root canal to eliminate the issue.

Dr. Douglas A. Heller named a Colorado Parent Magazine 2016 Top Dentist

dr-hellerDr. Douglas A. Heller has been named a Colorado Parent magazine Top Dentist for 2016. “In partnership with the national firm Top Dentists, Colorado Parent has assembled a comprehensive list of Colorado’s best dentists. The 2016 Top Dentists were chosen by Colorado’s ADA-recognized dentists who were asked who they believe are the very best in their field” (

The list of Top Dentists will be published in the February 2017 issue of Colorado Parent. In addition to this honor,  Dr. Heller was named one of Colorado’s 2016 Top Periodontists by 5280 Magazine for the 8th year in a row.

Have you seen Dr. Doug Heller on TV?

Here’s Dr. Heller on The Wellness Hour talking about replacing missing teeth with dental implants. In this clip he speaks on how Periodontal Associates – The Dental Implant Team is on the the cutting edge of dental implants and overall periodontal health treatment. He also shares how drastically his patients’ lives have changed after getting dental implants.

Dr. Heller has been practicing periodontics in Aurora, Colorado for over 20 years at Periodontal Associates – The Dental Implant Team. If you have questions about dental implants call 303-755-4500 or request an appointment

Did you know this about dental implants?

  • Dental implants have the same look, feel, and function of natural teeth.
  • Dental implants can provide you with comfort, convenience and confidence. Dr. Heller says, “dental implants are the 8th wonder of the world” because dental implants are matched exactly to your own teeth, and restore your smile to its optimal state. Dental implants can renewed self-confidence and peace of mind.
  • Drs. Ken Versman, Doug Heller, and Eric Beckman are uniquely qualified to provide a full range of implant dentistry procedures.They have been performing a full range of implant dentistry for more than 20 years in the Denver/Aurora, Colorado area.
  • Drs. Versman and Heller were one of the first U.S. dentists to study directly with the inventors of today’s implants. They have educated dentists, periodontists, and dental students about dental implants and implant procedures for many years, and have lectured on the subject in the Denver/Aurora, Colorado area, nationally and internationally!

    At Periodontal Associates – The Dental Implant Team,  we are the market leader and we are driving the development of new dental implant standards and protocols. Give us a call at 303-755-4500 or request an appointment today!

Dr. Beckman is in Arizona at the Spear Education “Implant Restorative Dentistry” 3-Day Lecture and Hands On-Course

Dr. Beckman in Arizona learning about dental implants
Implant Restorative Dentistry” 3-Day Lecture and Hands On-Course

Our very own Dr. Eric Beckman is in Arizona at the Spear Education Implant Restorative Dentistry 3-day lecture and hands on-course along with 300 other dentists from around the US. Periodontal Associates – The Dental Implant Team locally hosts a monthly Spear Education study club which “combines hands-on learning in small groups of peers is a proven way to master new clinical skills and build confidence” ( The doctors at Periodontal Associates believe in providing the best care for their patients. One of the ways the doctors do this is through the Spear Education study clubs to stay on the forefront of periodontics.