Geriatric Dentistry – Dentist Sandy Springs

geriatric dentist near me
Aging patients need special care for their oral health.

Two important oral health care concerns emerging in the United States:

  • Disparities in the oral disease burden, and
  • The inability of certain segments of the population to access oral health care.[1]

Older Americans are becoming a larger segment of our population and suffer disproportionately from oral diseases, with the problem being particularly acute for individuals in long term care facilities.

Not only do we see elderly patients in our Sandy Springs who are usually brought here by assisted living and nursing home facilities, but Dr. Orland visits numerous assisted living facilities outside of our immediate area.  By 2030, 1 of every 5 members in the US will be 65 years of age or older.  This large segment of our population is further compounded by the elderly population continuing to become increasingly diverse in terms of race, ethnicity, financial resources, and living conditions.[2]

The challenges faced by both the dental profession and the nation as a whole regarding provision of oral health care services to older adults needs a specialized and experienced team of dentists to address the issues.[3]  Medicare does not provide any coverage for dental services, and only 1 of 5 Americans aged 75 years or older has any type of private dental insurance and it will be highly unlikely that our government resources will be adequate to gear up for the impending problem of oral health for the elderly.

The elderly suffer from chronic disorders that can directly or indirectly affect oral health, including autoimmune disorders such as pemphigus and pemphigoid.[4] They generally require multiple medications, and common side effects of the more than 500 medications used to treat their overall health issues usually reduce salivary flow.[5]   And the reduction in saliva can adversely affect their quality of life, the ability to chew, and lead to significant problems of the teeth and their supporting structures.

In addition, particularly for geriatric patients, oral infection is now recognized as a risk factor for a number of systemic diseases, including cardiovascular diseases, cerebrovascular diseases, diabetes, mellitus, and respiratory disorders.  Also, it is important to note that once people have lost their teeth and are using complete dentures, their oral health needs do not decrease.   Our jaws are not static and may continue to resorb over time.  Besides the continued resorption of bone, improperly fitted dentures can adversely affect chewing, leading to poor nutrition.  In addition, those without teeth remain susceptible to oral cancer, mucosal diseases, and alterations in salivary gland function.

While effective preventive measures exist for younger populations (water fluoridation, dental sealants and parents), no preventive measures have been devised to address the expected increase in oral health needs of the aging population.  We have developed the expertise to take a leadership role in the delivery of health care services to the seniors who have contributed so vitally to our society’s well-being and who deserve to be treated with the best oral health care we have to offer.

Dr. Scheinfeld, a prosthodontist and her daughters Dr. Orland and Dr. Z. Scheinfeld  specialize in geriatric care.

Novy Scheinfeld, DDS, PC

Hanna Orland, DMD

ZoAnna Scheinfeld, MS, DMD

290 Carpenter Drive, 200A

Atlanta (Sandy Springs), GA 30328



3781 Chamblee Dunwoody Road

Chamblee, GA 30341


Related Articles

[1] Oral Health in America: A Report of the Surgeon General. Rockville, Md: National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research; 2000.

[2] Wikipedia and 2010 Census.                                                                                

[3] A State of Decay: The Oral Health of Older Americans. Chicago, Ill: Oral Health America; 2003:1–8.

[4] Stoopler ET, Sollecito TP, De Ross SS. Desquamative gingivitis: early presenting system of mucocutaneous disease. Quintessence Int.2003;34:582–586.

[5] Fox PC, Eversole LR. Diseases of the salivary glands. In: Silverman S, Eversole LR, Truelove EL, eds. Essentials of Oral Medicine. Ontario, Canada: BC Decker; 2002:260–276.

Sandy Springs’ Top Dentist – ADA Recognized Prosthodontist

It seems to be prevalent these days that many general dentists are calling themselves ‘implantologists’ without there being an implant specialty in dentistry.   While there are multiple disciplines of dentistry involved in the placement of implants and the general dentist is at the bottom end of the scale for expertise, training and experience.   The majority of dentists are general dentists, but press the envelope of ethics by calling themselves ‘implantologists’ or implant specialists.   Granted they all have undergraduate degrees with either a BA or BS and at least four years of dental school with either a DDS or a DMD as the result and by law are allowed to place and/or restore implants.   But not one of them has an American Dental Association recognized ‘implant specialty’ in dentistry.   Those dentists who choose to make the claim do so by virtue of deciding to focus on implants in their general practices.   The American Dental Association (ADA) only has nine recognized post dental degree specialties and implant dentistry is not one of them.  These specialties range in one to six years of advanced training beyond dental school.  At the end of their post doctorate dental degree, these dentists receive additional certifications in their respective specialties, thus becoming what should be considered experts within their fields of dentistry.   Some are either board eligible or board certified.  Of the ADA specialties only three truly have special post doctorate training in implants and they are:

Oral Surgeons, Periodontists, and the least known, Prosthodontists (who generally orchestrate the placement and final restoration of the implant).

Prosthodontics: (derived from the word prosthesis, ergo crown, bridge, and implants) A Prosthodontist has a dental specialty license pertaining to the diagnosis, treatment planning, rehabilitation and maintenance of the oral function, comfort, appearance and health of patients with clinical conditions associated with missing or deficient teeth and/or oral and maxillofacial tissues using biocompatible substitutes. Most dentists are not trained prosthodontic graduates of a dental school – rather they take short continuing education and utilize trial and error experience to be able to understand how size, shape, color and symmetry all work together to create what a prosthodontist is trained in their post graduate work.   Contrary to this hit or miss self-anointment, the prosthodontist is trained at an ADA approved university to create the smile that implements the use of veneers, crowns, bridges and the increasingly more common procedure of dental implants to ensure that the right smile is achieved, both functionally and aesthetically.  If anyone has a specialty in implant dentistry or the right to call themselves an ‘implantologist’, it would be the ADA sanctioned prosthodontist.  Of the 170 thousand dentists in the U.S., less than two (2%) percent are trained prosthodontists.  So when you are seriously looking for a cosmetic dentist to provide you with the best implant result, look for a prosthodontist.

Dr. Scheinfeld received her prosthodontics degree from Emory University School of Dentistry in 1988.  Her prosthodontics’ instructor Dr. E. Neal Kopp practiced with her for 14 years until his death in 2008.  In addition, Dr. Sidney Tourial, an adjunct Emory Prosthodontic professor and next year’s GDA President has been in the practice for over 19 years.

Novy Scheinfeld, DDS, PC
290 Carpenter Drive, 200A
Atlanta (Sandy Springs), GA 30328

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