Your kids depend on you for help learning healthy habits – and their brushing, flossing and diet are no different.
Childhood is a unique period of time when they learn habits that can stay with them for life. If they grow accustomed to a wide range of vegetables and a balanced diet, they’ll be more likely to appreciate healthy foods as they age. So staying cavity-free during childhood actually helps lead to healthy teeth during adulthood.
Now is your chance to help your son or daughter become a healthy, happy and well-adjusted individual. If you’re unsure of where to start, we’ve put together a handy reference below. Check out some of the most important stages of tooth development, plus ways to encourage tooth-healthy habits once your kids are more independent.
Feeling uncertain as to what’s best for your children’s dental health? Just get in touch to learn more and schedule an exam.
What to Expect as Your Kids’ Teeth Develop
Top Causes of Tooth Decay for Kids
Kids do share many of the same causes of cavities as adults – but they depend on you to recognize problems and correct them before decay spreads. Make sure to do the following to keep your children from developing more significant cavities or other dental problems:
- Visit the dentist regularly (every six months) – Your child should see a dentist by their first birthday. This allows the dentist to be sure that everything is developing properly and that the first erupting teeth are healthy. Then, kids should visit every six months.
- Avoid sugary or acidic drinks throughout the day – It’s okay for your kids to have unhealthy drinks from time to time, but you should do everything possible to avoid allowing them to sip on soda, juice or sports drinks throughout the day. Each sip leads to a prolonged acid attack on enamel, and this is a common cause of kids’ tooth decay.
- Make sure their toothpaste contains fluoride – Fluoride is crucial during tooth development, as it helps build strong enamel. Fluoridated products may have become controversial, but major organizations like the ADA remain firm that it is healthy for children’s teeth in appropriate amounts. Get in touch if you’re looking for guidance on this.
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Let’s be honest – nobody really wants to deal with braces.
Maybe you’re comfortable with all that brackets and wires entail because you’re just excited for the results. That’s why patients go through orthodontics, after all – to get straighter teeth, a more comfortable bite and a healthier smile. But if you hate the process, it makes the whole experience unpleasant and can even affect how satisfied you are with the results.
For patients with only mildly crooked teeth, there’s a better way.
That’s right – if only your front teeth are crooked but you have a healthy overall bite, you might not need to go through orthodontic treatment at all. Instead, you can discover a gorgeous grin with a simple set of porcelain veneers. The veneers we offer stand out from the rest for quite a few reasons – and if you keep reading, you’ll see why.
Meet Lumineers, the Friendlier Veneers
While porcelain veneers can make a big difference to patients’ teeth, the procedure sometimes leaves something to be desired. Patients may require significant tooth reduction in order for the veneers to fit over their teeth. This means that the natural tooth structure is drilled down to make room for the porcelain restoration. Tooth structure is lost, anesthesia is required, and temporaries must be worn in between appointments.
Lumineers evolved as a way to leave this frustrating process behind. They’re made of cerinate porcelain and are exceptionally thin – actually, no thicker than a contact lens. See for yourself with this comparison photo:
These veneers allow patients to transform their teeth without making big sacrifices. And if you have crooked front teeth, Lumineers could be appropriate for the straightening you’re seeking. That said, veneers aren’t appropriate for all crooked teeth – but there are a few ways you can figure out whether you’re a candidate at home.
Who Can Straighten Teeth with Lumineers?
Our upper and lower jaws work in harmony with one another. Our teeth should fit together comfortably when our jaws are at rest, and make chewing and biting comfortable. But that’s not how things always work out. Most of us aren’t born with a perfect smile – and even those that do can end up seeing their teeth shift as they age. Factors like gum disease, bruxism and other dental problems contribute to teeth moving and the bite changing.
Whether you had braces as a child and your bite has changed, or you’ve never undergone orthodontic treatment, you could be a candidate for Lumineers. Ask yourself the following questions to consider whether they might be the right option:
- Are your front teeth the area that you’re hoping to straighten?
- Lumineers are only appropriate for front teeth – back teeth require crowns to accommodate biting and chewing forces. Plus, since Lumineers make aesthetics a priority, they would be wasted on teeth that don’t show in your smile. But if your front teeth are crowded and overlap each other, or are spaced too far apart and have gaps between them, Lumineers could be perfect.
- Do your back teeth fit together comfortably?
- Using veneers to straighten your teeth isn’t going to resolve underlying issues with your bite. You will need to have a healthy occlusion before straightening your front teeth with Lumineers. But if you need additional straightening, metal braces aren’t the only way – Cherrywood Dental also provides Invisalign for teeth and adult patients seeking a less noticeable option. The clear plastic aligners allow for straightening without stress.
- Do you tend to bite your tongue or cheeks when you chew, or can you chew comfortably?
- If you have issues with chewing, this could be a signifier that you’re in need of orthodontic treatment. This may mean that your jaws are not in harmony or that your teeth fit together awkwardly. It’s not only uncomfortable when you accidentally chomp down on your flesh, but unhealthy in the long term. Crooked teeth can heighten your risk of dental problems and a jaw disorder, not to mention daily discomfort and self-consciousness. If you’ve been unhappy with your bite, just get in touch to learn more about your variety of treatment options.
- Have you had orthodontic treatment before?
- Countless adults with crooked teeth actually had braces as kids. But straighter teeth resulting from braces don’t always stick. If you stopped wearing your retainers over the years (as so many of us do), your teeth likely drifted back toward their former positions. Or if you had periodontal disease and lost gum tissue, the teeth may have shifted due to changing support. If you lost a tooth and didn’t replace it with a dental implant, your teeth likely moved toward the gap. No matter the cause of your changing teeth, you could be a good candidate for Lumineers. Since you already had braces, it’s likely that your bite is healthy overall – veneers will just put finishing touches on your smile.
Ready to meet with one of our dentist and learn more about your personal potential? It’s as simple as scheduling a free consultation. Just fill out your information in the form on this page and we’ll get in touch to set up your complimentary appointment.
It’s time to discover your straight smile!
Greenbelt Lumineers | Porcelain Veneers Greenbelt | Greenbelt Veneers
If your jaw has been feeling a little off, it’s time to learn more about what’s really going on in your mouth. Jaw pain can take hold gradually and insidiously, eventually becoming a part of your daily life. Or, it can hit you like a truck one morning with your jaw popping and clicking when you try to yawn or brush your teeth. Either way, you’ll benefit from TMJ treatment.
TMJ means a few different things. It’s technically the name of the jaw joint (aka the temporomandibular joint). But it’s also become shorthand for a slew of jaw disorders that can affect that joint. TMJ/TMD can be resolved in a variety of ways, and may take a concerted effort to improve in the long term. That’s why it’s important that you see your dentist at the onset of your jaw discomfort. The less time you spend with a damaging disorder, the easier it will be to heal and retrain your jaw.
We have some of the common causes of and treatment for TMJ pain below – check out our infographic, and then schedule an appointment for professional help.
Infographic: What to Do About Your TMJ Pain
More Ways to Improve Jaw Pain at Home
As mentioned, reducing stress is an extremely important step toward resolving jaw pain. You’d be surprised by just how often stress has physical manifestations. By reducing anxiety, you’re not only helping your jaw but also your entire body.
Preventing teeth grinding is also crucial. When you’re
It’s also possible to try out TMJ exercises at home. Finding healthy ways to stretch and exercise your jaw will help soothe your jaw joint. Try some of these exercises to stretch, strengthen and tone your jaw muscles:
- Put a thumb under your chin and push gently. Slowly open your mouth for several seconds, then slowly close it.
- Keep your thumb underneath your chin and place your index finger (from the same hand) between your chin and lower lip. Push gently while slowly closing your mouth.
- Relax your jaw and close your mouth. Keep your teeth slightly apart and slowly open your mouth as wide as possible while looking up at the ceiling. Hold your mouth open for several seconds, then slowly close it.
- After closing your mouth, move your lower jaw to the left while looking right (without turning your neck or head). Hold this for several seconds, then return to center. Switch sides.
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Stop wondering what your perfect smile would look like and do something about your teeth – without spending a penny. A digital smile makeover will show you what your grin could look like with the addition of Lumineers, thin porcelain veneers that transform teeth. It’s as simple as having your photo taken and turning it over to our Lumineers team.
If you’re interested in learning more, get in touch today to take the first step. Before your appointment, you can learn more about porcelain veneers below. Lumineers have some unique advantages over other veneers, which is why we offer them to our patients. Scroll down to view some of their benefits – we think you’ll be surprised by just how patient-friendly they really are.
What to Expect from a Digital Smile Makeover
LumiSmile is the Lumineers-specific digital smile makeover. This software takes into account the Lumineers capabilities that will help accomplish your aesthetic goals. The comparison allows you to take a look at your current smile and consider its full potential. Many patients considering cosmetic dentistry but unsure about the possibilities of treatment find that this smile makeover helps them make a final decision.
This digital makeover is complimentary, and takes just 30 minutes. If you have your photo taken at your next dental exam, your results will be ready by the time your cleaning is complete. It’s a full-service smile makeover in a single visit.
- First, your dentist will ask you what you’re interested in changing about your smile. If you have discoloration or stains, a gap between teeth, crooked front teeth, or worn teeth, we’ll make sure to target those areas for digital revitalization. This is also a great opportunity for you to articulate what it is you’d like to adjust about your smile, and learn more about your treatment options.
- Your dentist takes a photograph of your smiling face.
- An expert LumiSmile design artist applies digital Lumineers to your teeth. This smile takes your goals into account and builds out your teeth with digital veneers.
- We share your photo with you and discuss the changes that were made to your smile. You receive a portfolio containing your before and after photos for you to take home and review. This is an extremely helpful step in making your Lumineers decision.
- Once you’re ready, let us know if you’d like to move forward with your smile makeover – outside of the digital realm.
Why Patients Find Lumineers Fulfilling
The only way to learn whether Lumineers are right for you is to schedule a complimentary consultation. But while you’re considering your options, take note of the points below that apply to Lumineers only (rather than other porcelain veneers):
- The top requested veneer, worldwide – patients ask for Lumineers by name
- About 2 million Lumineers placed
- Lumineers attach to natural teeth seamlessly, and meet the gum line to look just like natural teeth
- The thinnest porcelain veneers available, without compromising their strength
- Offer permanent teeth whitening
- Only 2 visits necessary, and temporaries may not be necessary between appointments
- Placed by Lumineers dentists who have received advanced training on aesthetic techniques
- For many patients, there’s no pain, drilling or shots necessary
- Ideal for anxious patients nervous about the drill or injections
- Lumineers boast over 30 years of clinically proven results
This porcelain veneer is the patient-oriented solution for a comprehensive smile makeover. If you’d like to learn more, reach out today.
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How much soda do you drink each day? Are soft drinks an occasional treat, or are they an indispensable need that gets you through work and your other daily responsibilities? Taking an objective look at your drinking habits can help you make positive, healthy changes to your diet. Remember: even if you have a deeply entrenched soda habit, that can change. And learning more about how it’s affecting your teeth & body could be the right catalyst.
We’ve put together an infographic that tells our patients all they need to know about soda and their teeth. Whether you’re trying to learn more about how soft drinks impact your enamel, how to imbibe safely, or how to cut them out altogether, the information is below. Follow up your self-education with a dental exam for professional guidance – schedule yours today.
What You Need to Know about Soda & Teeth
How to Cut Down on Your Soda Drinking
The first thing to remember is that changing any habit will take time and effort. Those with serious soda habits find it incredibly tough to reduce their intake, especially if they typically drink caffeinated soda. Just like quitting smoking, you need to take the psychological step away from your bad habit. And while nicotine is far more addictive, the soda habit can be mentally tougher to break because it is easier to drink soda than to smoke and has fewer immediately noticeable side effects (like bad breath and smelly hands).
If you’re trying to get your diet on the right track, reach out for help! One of the great things about eating and drinking with your oral health in mind is that these tooth-friendly choices benefit your entire body as well.
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If you’re interested in improving your tooth replacement, you’ve probably been researching dental implants. And after getting answers to basic questions like what are dental implants, how do dental implants work, and what is implant surgery like, we know what’s next on your mind. Dental treatment can require some level of investment, and implants are a big process. So how can you estimate the total amount you’ll likely spend on implants? Starting with your insurance provider will help get you some answers.
We’re here to help you achieve affordable dental implants – and we have a special offer that will help take some weight off your wallet. Keep reading to learn what to expect from implant coverage, and what implants may costs you at our practice. If you’re ready to schedule a consultation, get in touch to speak with our staff.
Typical Dental Implant Insurance Coverage
Different insurance policies offer varying levels of coverage, no matter the treatment in question. Most dental insurance plans are designed to cover routine exams, dental emergencies and the basic level of dental care. There are also relatively low maximums for what can possibly be spent each year, typically between $1,000-$1,500. This is because the plans are intended to cover only preventive maintenance and then basic restorations.
Many insurance companies do not include dental implants as a covered benefit. Instead, they cover the low-cost alternatives (partials and dentures). Insurance providers also typically cover a portion of the required extractions and diagnostic steps that can be necessary before getting dental implants. If the plan does cover implants, that coverage is still restricted by the annual allowed maximum.
Some medical insurance plans now cover procedures that help patients prepare for implants, including bone grafts. There may also be cases where medical insurance covers tooth replacement because it is related to other medical conditions. If the tooth loss was related to the workplace or the individual’s job, this may be covered by medical insurance.
If you have Medicare and are considering dental implants, it’s important to know upfront that the plan does not include dental implants in its benefits.
Overall, it is safest to expect little to no dental implant coverage by insurance. Then, discuss your insurance with your implant provider and also speak directly with your dental and medical insurance providers. Make sure to get all available coverage information before you begin treatment. This way you can most accurately estimate your out of pocket costs.
How Much Do Dental Implants Cost?
The cost of a dental implant will be different depending on the area where you live and the level of expertise of the implant provider. An implant typically costs somewhere between $3,000-$4,500. This includes every component of treatment, from implant placement to the accompanying crown. Some dental insurances may cover the crown, so be sure to check with your provider.
In order to help make our patients’ dental implants affordable, we’re offering a special on treatment. Just mention the coupon above at your consultation to take advantage of this reduced pricing. We believe that every patient who has experienced tooth loss should be able to receive the kind of treatment that makes them feel like they have their old smile back again. In most cases, that means one or more implants.
While many insurance plans currently consider implants elective, this may change in the future. Implants have become the standard for effective tooth replacement, with a natural feel and function and high success rates. Get in touch today if you’re ready to learn more. Implants could be the restoration that return health, happiness and confidence to your smile.
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You should only move forward with dental implants once you’re completely comfortable with the process. But how can you reach that happy place before treatment begins? With a little extra research and by chatting with your dentist! We’re here to help our patients embrace implants and dive into the process with excitement. After all, the less anxious you are, the better engaged you will be with your dental care – and that’s a recipe for success.
We have an infographic below that will help you decide whether implants are the right fit for your needs. This graphic highlights some of the major ways that implant patients gain advantages over those who choose less-comprehensive restorative treatments. If you’re currently wearing dentures, implants are still a possibility, and can even be paired with your existing dentures. Don’t hold back out of concerns that you’re not an implant candidate – there’s no harm in finding out more.
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact our front desk. Implant consultations are free and we’re ready to tell you more about your options.
How To Decide on Tooth Implants
Becoming an Implant Patient
The first step toward dental implants is a thorough examination. If it’s been some time since you’ve lost the tooth or teeth in question, there may not be adequate bone mass present to integrate with the implant. Or you may have cavities or periodontal disease that require treatment before implant surgery.
Don’t worry – even if you do fall into these categories, there are preparatory treatments that will get you ready for implants in no time. A bone graft will add new osseous tissue to the area of your jaw that will be receiving implants. Fillings and periodontal treatment will get your oral health back to an implant-ready place. And with laser periodontal therapy, the process will be more comfortable and pleasant than you could expect.
Reach out today to get started!
Woodbridge Dental Implants | Dental Implants Woodbridge | Tooth Implants Woodbridge
It’s no secret – as Americans, we’re obsessed with smiles. But living within our bubble can make us forget that other cultures don’t share this fascination. The “Hollywood smile” got its name for a reason – because we’re so preoccupied with white, straight, “perfect” teeth. What perfect means is another conversation. But what perfect means to you is what you deserve to achieve, and that’s what we’re here to help with.
Read on to learn more about why we love smiles that look just right, and where in American history this concept came from. No matter the source of this obsession, we can’t argue that we all care about the way our teeth look. If you’re interested in changing your smile, you owe it to yourself to find out more about your options. As Lumineers providers, we’ve helped countless patients achieve smiles they love – and yours could be next. Schedule a free consultation to learn more about what you can gain from these ultra-thin veneers.
Why Americans Are Obsessed with Straight, White Teeth
The concept of the Hollywood smile goes all the way back to the Great Depression. This was a time when films were just starting to be regularly released, and the American public was experiencing moviegoing for the first time.
A dentist named Charles Pincus opened an office on Hollywood and Vine and began marketing to the movie studios. Dr. Pincus saw that actors like James Dean, Judy Garland and Shirley Temple didn’t have teeth that matched their symmetrical, beautiful faces. He started creating smiles that allowed actors to present teeth that suited their overall looks. Shirley Temple actually wore snap-on veneers that covered up her loss of baby teeth – no matter what, she always had a full, adorable smile.
As time passed and perfect teeth became synonymous with the wealth and fame of movie stars, that impacted what the American public took great smiles to mean in general. As years went by, beautiful teeth grew more closely associated with having money, success and a high level of personal status. Today, flashing a symmetrical and aesthetically pleasing smile means more than just looking like a movie star. Multiple studies have shown that we associate so many positive attributes with great teeth, from health to success to friendliness and approachability. And that’s all related to how others view you – when you add in the self esteem and confidence that can stem from a beautiful smile, the importance of your grin is immediately clear.
Achieving Your Own Perfect Smile
Of course, “perfect” means something different to everyone. When you’re considering which dental treatment speaks to you, you may gravitate toward teeth whitening, Invisalign, bonding or something else entirely. The treatment that will fit is one that satisfies your aesthetic goals while keeping your smile functioning well and feeling natural.
We can think of a treatment that satisfies all those criteria. Lumineers are thin porcelain veneers that offer natural-looking teeth without significant tooth reduction. This allows even patients who are anxious about dental work to receive a smile makeover. Lumineers patients can accomplish any (or all) of the following:
- Straighten teeth
- Lengthen worn teeth
- Reduce sensitivity from worn enamel
- Stained enamel that refuses to whiten
- Change tooth size or shape
- Gently enhance lips
- Achieve a full smile makeover
…and so much more. If there’s something about your teeth you’d like to tweak, just get in touch to schedule your free consultation. We look forward to bringing your own Hollywood smile to life!
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What are your teeth telling you? This question is tougher to answer than you might expect. Oral health shouldn’t be a big mystery, but it’s often tricky to spot the small changes that announce growing dental problems. Instead of struggling to diagnose issues, you can get ahead of dental problems by preventing them in the first place.
Easier said than done, right? Actually, a cavity-free smile can be as simple as rethinking your daily approach to oral health. Routine actions add up to your long-term smile. If you’ve been seeing frequent cavities or battled gingivitis, it’s time to try a few new things. We’ve compiled some of the most helpful tips we have to offer below. If you’re looking for personalized advice, don’t hesitate to reach out today!
How to Treat Your Teeth for a Cavity-Free Smile
What Should I Do Differently to Improve My Health?
Only a dental professional can give you a specific answer. But recognizing potential weak spots in your daily hygiene and home care will give you a few clues. Consider your dental history, and the types of problems you tend to experience. Take a look at your daily diet, habits and hygiene regimen. Then, take this information to your dentist and have a thorough discussion.
As your dentists, we’re here to help you gain a beautiful, healthy and happy smile. But we need your help in building that. Schedule your next exam today to get on the right track.
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Stress is already unpleasant in itself – but the very real pain it can cause is even more damaging. While stress may seem mental, it has physical ramifications. When you’re living with a heightened level of anxiety, your muscles, organs, and more suffer. And your teeth are some of the first casualties.
How does your body respond when you’re feeling stressed? Some people get headaches, others struggle to sleep, others overeat – and many of us grind our teeth. If you wake up with sore teeth, an exhausted jaw, and facial pain or headaches, you’re likely a part of this group. What’s most alarming about teeth grinding is that many sufferers don’t realize what’s happening inside their mouths. This is because grinding typically takes place during sleep, with the jaw muscles contracting independent of conscious commands.
Are your pearly whites at risk? Keep reading to learn more about whether stress might be impacting your smile. Plus, get tips on reducing your daily anxiety to help your muscles relax.
How Stress Causes Teeth Grinding
Chronic grinding is also known as bruxism, and it’s a big problem. If you’re an adult, you have a lot of responsibilities – professional, financial and to your family. These responsibilities build up
and can cause undue personal stress. That stress needs an outlet – and it doesn’t always get it.
When you’re stressed, the brain releases hormones that prepare the body for fight or flight. These hormones (cortisol, adrenaline, and more) lead to an increased heart rate and blood pressure. They also cause subtle tensing of the muscles, which leads to aches and pains.
For many patients, muscles tense in the jaw – and they don’t notice it happening. That ongoing tension damages both teeth and components of the jaw, leading to potential problems like:
- Eroded enamel
- Cracked teeth
- Broken dental work
- Heightened sensitivity
- Gum recession
- Headaches & facial pain
- Jaw joint trauma
When Grinding Progresses to a TMJ Disorder
Long-term pressure on the jaw can lead to jaw dysfunction and TMJ disorder. The jaw joint may become damaged, or may become so accustomed to harmful movements that it struggles to work properly. In either case, it will become difficult to perform daily activities like eating, speaking, and chewing. Your jaw may feel exhausted and hard to move. You will require treatment to heal your jaw and help retrain it – but stopping grinding first is absolutely necessary to end the problem.
Soothing Tense Jaw Muscles at Home
Try the following to reduce muscle tension in the jaw at home:
- Conscious muscle relaxation – Spend time before bed each night clearing your mind and focusing on rest
- Jaw stretches – Try jaw exercises that work your jaw muscles to help relieve tension
- Change your nightly routine – Avoid smoking, caffeine and alcohol before bed, and don’t use your laptop, read or watch TV while in bed
- Use a night guard – Wear a guard to protect your enamel and help stop your lower jaw from clenching
- Research stress management – Discover ways to reduce your daily stress for years to come – more tips below
If these approaches aren’t helping, consider professional help. You may benefit from receiving therapy to help reduce your stress and improve your stress management techniques. You may also benefit from orthodontic treatment to realign your jaws. Malocclusion can lead to the teeth clenching and struggling to fit into a comfortable position, which leads to TMJ problems. If you think you may benefit from orthodontics, schedule a consultation to learn more.
Reduce Daily Stress to Improve Health Long-Term
Each of us is an individual – you’ll need to take some time to figure out which stress management techniques will work for you. This can take some research and experimenting. It’s not as easy as picking up a musical instrument or getting into an exercise routine (although those approaches can be helpful). Some individuals find a path forward with the help of a therapist.
If you’re experiencing consistent physical effects of stress, you deserve relief. Some popular methods of de-stressing include:
- Changing your work habits (not working on the weekends / reducing hours, or making sure not to work at home). If this is impossible and stress is damaging your life, it might be a good idea to consider a job change.
- Meditation or yoga
- Regular exercise routine
- Setting aside personal time for relaxation and self care
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I love to smile now ever since Dr. “B” did a great job on my teeth.
I love to smile now ever since Dr. “B” did a great job on my teeth. I am getting use to all the complements also. Dr. B is a sensitive and caring dentist. He and hi lovely wife make a great team! They make you feel comfortable enough that you ...