Topeka Dentistry
Carrie Peterson, DDS & Ben Rutherford, DDS

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How can we help you?

We Are Here to Help You

There are many aspects of dentistry that Drs. Carrie Peterson and Ben Rutherford enjoy—starting with providing guidance and support. Your dental journey doesn't have to be a chore because we make it fun and easy. Preventive dentistry is a great way to be proactive about your dental health.

We invite our patients to come to us with any questions, doubts, fears, or even just curiosity. We love to share information and valuable resources.

We have provided some questions we frequently hear from patients, but if there's something that hasn't been addressed or answered fully, please don't hesitate to call us at (785) 266-9100. We are always happy to hear from you and keep you informed.

Dental Implants

If you are currently dealing with missing teeth, you might be considering a tooth replacement. At Topeka Dentistry, we offer different options for many dental procedures. Your Topeka dentist can help determine which option is the best for you. 

Dental Implants

Dental implants are the most popular, permanent tooth replacement we offer our Topeka patients. They mimic the behavior of your natural tooth, down to the root, stimulating healthy bone growth and gum health. Dental implants use a thin, titanium post that is secured to your jawbone. Once it has healed and fused, it serves as a foundation for long-term tooth restoration. 


Dentures are a popular and most cost-effective option to restore missing teeth. They can be used to restore a few missing teeth or all of them. Dentures can be cost-efficient, but some patients may not like the use of adhesives.

Over time, without a root in place, your jaw bone will shrink. For this reason, dentures will have to be adjusted so that it will fit perfectly. Your dentist may recommend implant-supported dentures to overcome this. 

Dental Bridge

Patients with a missing tooth (or teeth) may be interested in enhancing their smile with a dental bridge.

A dental bridge "bridges" the space between one or more missing teeth. Using dental crowns that fit over neighboring healthy teeth, an artificial tooth can be bonded to the crowns to fill the gap.

Are You Missing One or More Teeth?

Give us a call today to go over your options. Each patient has unique smile goals, needs, lifestyle, and budget. Together, we will find the perfect fit for you. We can't wait to hear from you!

Restoring missing teeth is a benefit to your oral health and general well-being for a variety of reasons. Dental implants are a modern tooth replacement procedure that can create a long-lasting look while preserving your smile. 

We use implants to replace a single tooth, multiple teeth, or all of the teeth. Our goal is to restore your teeth and allow you to smile, eat your favorite foods, and speak clearly. 

Dental Implants Restore Your Tooth Root

Dental implants are thin titanium posts that we secure into your jawbone. Since they replace your entire tooth down to the root, patients won't have to worry about their dental implant slipping out of place or falling out. 

Additionally, being able to bite down and chew stimulates healthy bone growth and prevents your bone from receding. 

Will Dental Implants Hurt?

The procedure is typically comfortable and stress-free. Before the procedure, your Topeka dentist will apply a local anesthetic so that patients do not feel any discomfort. If you feel any stress or anxiety, we invite you to discuss sedation options with us. 

Dental implants are a popular tooth restoration procedure that improves your appearance and quality of life. 

Benefits of Dental Implants

For some patients, dental bridges and dentures are uncomfortable due to sore spots, a poor fit, or gagging. Dental bridges are held in place by teeth on neighboring sides of the space left by the missing tooth. Dental implants do not require any adjacent teeth to be prepared or adjusted to hold them in place. 

During your consultation with Dr. Carrie Peterson or Dr. Ben Rutherford, we will observe your gum health and determine if you have adequate bone structure to support the implant. Patients must commit to keeping up with their oral health and visiting us regularly to keep track of your progress after the procedure. 

Many patients love the freedom and security dental implants provide. 

General Dentistry

At Topeka Dentistry, x-rays are a useful diagnostic tool that is extremely safe. Digital x-rays emit low doses of radiation and are considered reliable and safe when used correctly with safety precautions in place. 

If you're worried that digital x-rays are not safe, or if you should avoid them, let us know. Patient education is part of our philosophy, and we're more than happy to explain how they work and why you can relax.

Who Should Get an X-Ray

There is little cause for concern regarding digital x-rays, provided that safety precautions are followed. A regular dental examination with x-rays can emit the same level of radiation you would experience during two hours on a flight. 

Your Topeka dentists use x-rays as diagnostic tools to observe dental issues that are invisible to the naked eye. By using x-rays, we can observe the following:

  • Tooth decay, especially between teeth or under a filling
  • Abscesses
  • Bone loss
  • Tumors
  • Root canal infection

An x-ray allows us to diagnose many oral health problems that could go undiagnosed. At Topeka Dentistry, we can also use digital x-rays in dental procedures like dental implants, braces, dentures, and more. 

Is Your Child Safe Using X-Rays?

It's normal for parents to feel concerned about their children's safety; however, the amount of radiation is considered low and safe for a child. We use digital x-rays to observe your child's teeth and gums as they continually change so that we can keep track of their development.  

X-rays can help us make sure that your child's mouth can accommodate emerging teeth, observe the development of gum disease or tooth decay, and more.

Are you experiencing dental pain or need emergency dentistry services? If so, give us a call immediately so we can find the next available appointment with your emergency dentist in Topeka. 

At the dental office of Dr. Carrie Peterson and Dr. Ben Rutherford, we know how stressful an emergency can be. We make time to see our patients as soon as we can, whether you're a new patient or a current one. 

We work hard to see you the same day.

If you need immediate professional help, give us a call at (785) 266-9100. We can go through your dental emergency and assess if you need to come to see us right away. If you are a new patient, we may need to complete a comprehensive dental exam. 

What Is a Dental Emergency?

  • Swollen jaw
  • Bleeding gums
  • Tooth pain
  • Loose or lost dental crown
  • Loose or lost fillings
  • Cracked or chipped tooth
  • Knocked-out tooth
  • Broken dentures
  • Abscess
  • Infected tooth

Find a Family Dentist in Topeka, KS

Emergency dental situations never happen when you expect them, and most of them need immediate professional treatment. If you have knocked your tooth out, the sooner we can see you, the better our chances are of saving your tooth. Time is an essential issue. 

The last thing you want to do during an emergency is to determine which dentist you can trust. We recommend finding a local dentist you can trust and who sees you regularly. Seeing a familiar face during a stressful moment can help alleviate a lot of anxiety. 

Call Us If You Have a Dental Emergency

Call your emergency dentist in Topeka, KS at the first sign of dental pain. 

While more than half of Americans have dental insurance, many may not fully realize what dental insurance is and what it does or doesn't cover. At Topeka Dentistry, we are more than happy to help go over your type of coverage, benefits, and more. 

Don't Skip Dental Visits or Exams

Some people are put off from visiting the dentist due to fear of rising dental costs, but skipping the dentist can put your overall health at risk. When cavities continue to grow, for example, they are linked to severe health issues, like heart problems. 

Visiting your dentist is just as crucial for your general health as it is for your oral well-being. 

Dental insurance helps patients offset the cost of dental care so they can maintain good oral health. That's why your Topeka dentists focus on preventive care so we can catch dental issues early on (saving patients the cost of complex dental treatment).

We Work With Your Insurance Provider

Not all medical plans include dental work, which is why dental insurance is often separate. What your dental insurance covers can depend on the type of plan you have. 

At Topeka Dentistry, our friendly front desk staff is here to help go over your insurance benefits. We will help file claims to maximize your coverage. 

We Work With Financing Options

We also allow patients access to dental procedures if it isn't covered by their insurance. We accept Greensky and Care Credit, two financing options that give our patients the freedom to get the oral healthcare they need.

Invisalign Clear Braces

We work with a variety of insurance companies at Topeka Dentistry and we are always happy to perform a complimentary benefit check before any procedure to give patients an estimate of what their portion may be. We are also happy to file insurance claims. Invisalign treatment falls under the umbrella of orthodontic treatment. Each insurance plan is different, if an insurance plan helps pay for Invisalign treatment will depend on the specifics of that plan and if that plan has orthodontic coverage or an age limit on orthodontic coverage. 

You can call your dental insurance company for further specifics on your orthodontic eligibility within your plan. 

Many patients have elected to invest in their own health and elected to have Invisalign treatment without insurance coverage. For patients without insurance or inadequate insurance coverage, Topeka Dentistry offers a variety of payment options. Our knowledgeable office staff with explain payment options before any treatment begins. You can also access third party financing options, as we partner with GreenSky and Care Credit. 

Call our office today to schedule a consultation for Invisalign. We can access if this is the right treatment for you and discuss any financing questions you may have. 

Your goal should be to wear your Invisalign aligners for at least 22 hours a day. The aligners cannot move your teeth if they are not in your mouth. Traditional metal braces, brackets, and wires cannot be removed for any reason. One advantage of Invisalign is that the aligners can be removed for meals and for better brushing and flossing. However, this benefit can become a drawback if you are not completely committed to wearing the aligners for at least 22 hours a day. Every hour you leave you aligners out, your teeth have the option to relapse and move back to their original, non-desired position. 

You chose Invisalign because it is a convenient, comfortable, more attractive way to straighten your teeth. It will give you the freedom to enjoy your favorite foods and the ability to more easily clean your teeth, but the rest of the time, your clear aligners should be in your mouth.

If you are considering Invisalign or clear aligner orthodontic therapy, call the office at 785-266-9100 today so that we can schedule a consultation with you

Everyday we see adults at our office with crooked teeth who had previous orthodontics/braces when they were teenagers. They are disappointed that their teeth have moved and are no longer straight. Teeth have a “memory”, and eventually they will want to shift back into their original position even after they have been straightened. Once orthodontic treatment is complete, it is important to wear retainers to keep them in place. Retainers can typically be worn at night while you sleep, however the key is that they have to be worn every night for the rest of your life. With consistent retainer wear every night, your orthodontic treatment can potentially last a lifetime!

Everyone deserves a healthy and beautiful smile, regardless of age. Investing in orthodontic treatment is an investment in your health at any age. Invisalign is an orthodontic option which is used to straighten mild to moderate misalignments in older teenagers and adults of any age. When teeth are straighter, not only does it lend to greater confidence and a more beautiful smile, but it also leads to healthier teeth long-term. Straighter teeth are easier to keep clean and proper cleaning of teeth decreases the risk for dental decay and periodontal disease in most patients.  

Call our office today to schedule a consultation with our team to discuss if Invisalign will meet your dental needs.

Invisalign is an alternative to traditional, metal bracket orthodontic treatment. It uses clear aligners which are worn over natural teeth to move teeth into an improved position. Because the aligners are clean, when they are worn they are virtually invisible. Patient love Invisalign because there are no limitation to their diet, they don’t have to worry about wires breaking or poking their cheeks or gums, and it is much easier to clean the teeth while in treatment with Invisalign.

If you would like to learn more about Invisalign and see if you are a good candidate for treatment, call our office today for a consultation with our team to find out if this is the right treatment of your needs.

Invisalign is a teeth straightening process that utilizes a series of clear, plastic aligners that slowly and gently align your teeth. This process does not use brackets or wires and is entirely removable.

How Does the Process Work?

Your Topeka dentist will customize your unique smile treatment plan that maps out the gradual movements of your teeth. Your custom-fabricated clear aligners are crafted to gradually move your teeth without painful force. Patients wear each set of the series for an allotted amount of time before moving on to the next set. 

Your Topeka Dentistry doctor will monitor your progress and make sure your aligners are a good fit.

Benefits of Invisalign

The number one benefit for many patients is their discreet appearance. The clear plastic aligners blend seamlessly with your smile, and most people won't even know you're wearing an orthodontic treatment. 

Many patients also appreciate being able to remove their aligners, so they can enjoy their favorite foods and drinks and also brush and floss their teeth before reinserting the aligners. Invisalign aligners allow for better oral hygiene, nutrition, appearance, and quality of life. 

Are You Interested in Straightening Your Teeth?

Crooked or overcrowded teeth can be challenging to keep clean, and some patients may not be excited by their appearance. Using Invisalign to straighten your teeth is a simple, comfortable, and reliable process that does not require brackets or wires. 

You may love how easy it is to keep your teeth clean, as well as track your progress week by week. If you've been waiting to make a change in your life, now is the time! Your Invisalign dentists in Topeka are available at any time to schedule an evaluation. 

Not finding what you need?
If you have difficulty using our website, please email us or call us at (785) 266-9100
View the ADA Accessibility Statement