How to Overcome Lifelong Dental Anxiety

nervous looking woman biting her fingernails

Stop biting your nails (seriously, it’s bad for your teeth!) and get more comfortable in the office

Dental anxiety: it’s easily the worst part of a patient’s dental care. Because what they fear might happen in the office is typically much worse than anything that will actually take place – it’s the old adage that we suffer more in imagination than we do in reality.

If you’ve had that anxiety for years, and stayed away from the dentist’s office due to fear, what you’ve conceived as possible painful or embarrassing situations that could take place in the office are dominating your approach to your dental care.

It’s time to disrupt this pattern and get you more comfortable with the office. Below, we’ve detailed the two important steps you need to take to improve your anxiety. First, consider what might be the cause of your dental phobia. This will help you identify what it is that you need to change. Then, take the recommended steps to start altering your dental mentality.

No matter where you are in your anxiety journey, we’re here to help. Just get in touch with our staff for assistance or answers to any questions.

What Are The Causes of Dental Anxiety?

While estimates vary, one thing is for sure – a whole lot of adults experience dental anxiety. Some studies say that 1 in 7 adults experience high levels of anxiety, and others say that 9-15% of Americans avoid even visiting the dentist due to their anxiety. That’s really the bigger problem, because when you skip routine exams you risk developing more serious dental problems that require more invasive care – which only triggers further anxiety.

The cause of your anxiety is personal and unique to your experience. But there are some more universal factors that tend to inform their nerves and build them up to a larger phobia. See if any of these sound familiar –

  • Past negative experiences with a dentist (often during childhood) – If you’ve had an uncomfortable dental exam or procedure in the past, then you will find it more difficult to pursue future dental care. These experiences often stem from childhood, as children are nervous about what their exams might be like. Unpleasant smells and sounds, unexpected pain, or uncertainty at what’s going to happen in the office can linger with a patient for years and prevent them from feeling good about future care.
  • Other fears that are related to the dental experience – You may have another phobia that is wrapped up in your dental care and impossible to distinguish. If you have a fear of needles or a sensitive gag reflex, these stressors can prevent you from receiving dental care comfortably. Addressing these problems at their source will help you feel better about dental care.
  • Feeling of helplessness / loss of control – Receiving dental care puts you in a unique position. Your face is incredibly close to your dentist’s and your hygienists, and they’re closer to your mouth than anyone typically is (unless you’re in a relationship with them). Combining that with being unable to speak clearly during an exam when dental instruments are in your mouth can lead to anxiety about not being in charge of your body and its closeness to those around you.
  • Embarrassment – Many patients with dental anxiety procrastinate with their exams, sometimes taking long breaks between appointments. They can be very self conscious about dental problems that they may have developed during this period, and not want to show their teeth and gums to a professional. Something that’s crucial to remember here is that a good dentist is never going to judge you or shame you. They care about you and your health and want to act as your ally in helping you regain happiness and a disease-free smile.
  • Fear of the unknown – This is the root of many other anxieties, and has been around since the dawn of human consciousness. The issue is, you just don’t know exactly what’s going to happen when you visit the dentist’s office. A part of you knows that it’s likely going to be okay. But another part of you worries about turning up a cavity that will require drilling, or gum disease, or something more serious like the need for a root canal. And the fear of unknown costs to fix these problems is tied up in those concerns as well.

How Can I Improve My Dental Anxiety?

Even if you’ve been anxious since your very first dental exam as a toddler, that can all change. There is going to need to be some work on your part, and some work on your dentist’s – but know that Dr. Pakpour and Dr. Barzgar love helping anxious patients get more comfortable, and value open communication. If you’re nervous about an upcoming procedure, let us know so that we can take steps to help put you at ease.

Before your next exam or procedure, consider trying the following –

  • First thing: schedule an exam ASAP – If you have bad dental anxiety, it’s probably been more than 6 months since you were last in the office. Getting back on a regular exam schedule will help improve your anxiety for a few reasons. One, you visit the office more often, so you get accustomed to the sights and sounds and develop good relationships with the office staff. Two, you’re more likely to avoid serious dental problems because you receive preventive care. That means fewer feelings and reduced risk of gum disease.
  • Talk to your dentist – Once we know that you’re feeling nervous, we can help talk you through your appointment. But we don’t always have noticeable signs that we can pick up on to take that approach, so please be direct – you won’t hurt our feelings.
  • Book an early morning appointment – Get your exam over with! Schedule the first appointment available and go to work just a little late.
  • Bring a friend or family member to your appointment – Having someone you are close with at the office with you can help you feel more relaxed.
  • Ask for nitrous oxide – Dental sedation helps prevent your body from triggering anxiety responses, and keeps you feeling calm. Nitrous is easy to receive – you inhale it through a small mask over your nose and there are no needles involved – and takes hold quickly. If you’ve never tried nitrous and have struggled with anxiety, we recommend trying it for your next procedure.
  • Listen to music – Ask your dentist if you can bring headphones and listen to something soothing during your appointment. As long as they can still communicate with you when necessary, this could help you relax.
  • Try relaxation methods during regular life – Your anxiety can spill over into other realms. If you tend to be anxious throughout daily life, trying yoga or meditation could help you in the dental chair as well.
  • Talk to a therapist – If you have more advanced anxiety, speaking with a professional is a good idea. They might recommended ongoing therapy to help you work through your fears.
  • Find a dentist that you love – Remember, if you’re just not comfortable with your dentist, you’re never going to feel at home in the office. Look for a provider that makes you feel listened to and clearly cares about your comfort. Reading patient reviews is a great way to get a feel for what the patient base experiences with that office.
Greenbelt General Dentistry | General Dentist Greenbelt | General Dentistry Greenbelt

 

What Every Diabetic Should Know About Oral Health

Diabetics know that they need to carefully monitor their diet and control their blood sugar. But less-discussed is the significant connection between diabetes and oral health. Poor blood sugar heightens the risk of developing periodontal disease. This leads to shockingly common gum problems for diabetics – in fact, 1 in 5 cases of total tooth loss is related to diabetes.

We’d like to start changing that statistic. The first step is helping diabetics and non-diabetics alike become more informed about the best ways to keep their gums healthy.

We’ve put together an infographic that discusses the diabetes’ impact on the mouth, as well as other conditions with oral symptoms. And the mouth-body connection goes in both directions, so there’s also information about how gum disease may heighten the risk of other health conditions.

Be sure to read to the end for some diabetes-specific oral health tips.

Oral Health and Whole Body Health – Understanding the Connection

infographic about how oral health impacts systemic health

Caring for Your Teeth and Gums as a Diabetic

Gum disease affects about 22% of diabetics. Infected gums can cause the blood sugar to rise, making it more difficult to control diabetes. If you have diabetes, it’s key that you stay vigilant and treat your gums with care. Be sure to do the following –

  • Schedule routine exams – Professional cleanings will help you avoid plaque buildup and prevent gum disease. Your dentist will also be able to tell how well your blood sugar has been controlled and help you stay on track.
  • Follow your doctor’s instructions to control your blood sugar – Take any prescribed medications, get a healthy diet, and exercise regularly. Healthy blood sugar levels will help you fight bacterial infections in the mouth and will also improve dry mouth.
  • Do not use tobacco
  • If you wear a denture, clean it daily and thoroughly
  • Practice good oral hygiene – brush twice daily and floss once daily.

If you’re looking for help controlling your diabetes and improving your oral health, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Woodbridge General Dentist | General Dentistry Woodbridge | General Dentist Woodbridge

 

This Surprising Drink Might Be Secretly Damaging Your Teeth

pouring water into glass from a carafe, on white background
You know that you’re supposed to avoid soda and juice for the sake of your enamel. But there’s another popular drink that could be just as problematic.

Sparking water has become more widespread in recent years, with Americans drinking more and more of the sugar-free soda alternative. Between May 2016 and May 2017, we actually spent about $2.3 billion on seltzer. Some trend experts think that this surge has to do with seltzer’s popularity among millennials. But no matter the cause of the popularity, drinks should be aware of potential risks.

There are a few reasons why sparkling water shouldn’t be the majority of what you drink – and we dive into those below. It’s always important to remember that no beverage should be the only thing you imbibe (other than water, that is!) and diversifying your diet is beneficial for your health. If you’re ever looking for advice on tooth-healthy foods and drinks, just get in touch.

Why Might Sparkling Water Be Bad for Teeth?

It’s all about the carbonation. Sparking water contains carbonic acid. This is because carbon dioxide gas dissolves in the carbonation process. The pH level of seltzer is therefore lower than normal water.

Add the flavorings involved in some sparkling waters, and you end up with an acidity similar to that of fruit juice. A study published in the International Journal of Pediatric Dentistry found that many sparkling waters have the same effect on teeth as orange juice, softening tooth enamel. The study found that citrus-flavored waters were the most corrosive, since they contain citric acid as well as carbonic acid.

But in this case, the flavoring might be the primary cause of the problem. A different study published in the Journal of Oral Rehabilitation found that plain mineral water and flavorless seltzer do minimal damage to teeth.

So what’s the real answer? Experts say that individuals would need to consume sparkling water regularly over a significant period of time in order to see significant changes to their enamel. Basically, labs can create unrealistic environments, and real-world seltzer consumption is unlikely to ever reach that level.

How to Avoid Enamel Erosion, No Matter What You Drink

Even though seltzer might not be as dangerous as soda because it skips the sugar, you should still take care. It’s always a good idea to be careful with even somewhat acidic drinks. When you sip an acidic beverage, you kick off acid attacks within your mouth. The acid strips the enamel of minerals for minutes at a time following each sip. This leads to enamel eroding and becoming sensitive.

There are a few ways to protect your teeth when you’re enjoying an acidic drink like sparkling water, wine, or orange juice –

  • Drink quickly – We don’t mean that you should chug a glass of wine, but you can absolutely reduce the number of sips you take. By taking fewer large sips as opposed to many tiny sips, you’re exposing your teeth to shorter and fewer acid attacks. If you’re drinking something especially acidic, try to follow this rule and your teeth will thank you.
  • Use a straw – A straw helps direct the harmful liquid toward the back of your mouth and keep it from washing over your teeth. We know that it’s not always possible to use a straw, especially in social settings, but you can have a reusable straw at home to use when you’re alone or with family.
  • Pair drinks with meals – Snacking is a big problem for your teeth. This is because you don’t eat enough food during a snack to stimulate enough saliva to wash away acids. By pairing sweets and acidic drinks with meals, you can ensure there’s enough saliva to protect your teeth.
  • Rinse with water or chew sugar-free gum – After you finish your beverage, quickly swish with water or chew on a piece of sugar-free gum. This will help reset your oral pH and remove acids and food particles.

You should also use fluoride toothpaste if you have a problem with sensitive or worn enamel. Fluoridated toothpaste remineralizes your enamel to help reduce erosion. It’s usually best to use this toothpaste at night because the fluoride has the strongest impact if you don’t rinse with water afterwards. For those who brush and then head out the door or eat breakfast on the go, this can be challenging.

No matter the state your teeth are in, we’re here to help. Get in touch with any questions about your diet or your oral health. The better informed you are, the better you’ll be able to build a strong and healthy smile!

Woodbridge General Dentist | Woodbridge General Dentistry | General Dentistry Woodbridge
What Daily Life with Invisalign is REALLY Like

Woman wearing orthodontic silicone trainer

So: you’re ready. You’re straightening your teeth, and you’re trying out this supposedly patient-friendly treatment method called Invisalign.

If you’re holding your aligners in your hand for the first time, you’re probably thinking: okay, I’ve got them, but what do I do next?

While your Invisalign provider will give you all the information you need to succeed, there are always going to be day-to-day bumps in the road that you might not feel prepared for.

That’s where this post comes in!

If you’re a new Invisalign patient, this article will tell you exactly what you can expect from the upcoming months in your aligners – plus, some advice on retaining your results post-treatment. If you’ve got questions, we’ve got answers – and if you don’t find what you’re looking for below, just get in touch with Cherrywood Dental for advice. Our staff loves helping Invisalign patients through their journeys, and unveiling their straight, confident smiles in the months ahead!

Invisalign Non-Negotiables: What You MUST Do Daily

While Invisalign definitely makes straightening simple for its patients, there are some guidelines that you absolutely must follow if you’re going to finish treatment on schedule – and avoid cavities along the way.

  • Wear your aligners as much as possible – While Invisalign’s removability makes it more appealing than braces, that removable nature adds responsibility onto the patient. You need to wear your aligners at least 20-22 hours per day (every 24 hours). This might sound easy, but it’s actually quite a big chunk of your day and night. If you eat three meals a day, plus snacks in between, plus brushing and flossing, that’s easily a few hours when you aligners will need to be out. A good practice is to brush immediately after eating, then pop your aligners back in. There’s another downside to leaving your aligners out after eating – it’s more likely that you’ll lose them. Something that you can try is setting a an alarm on your phone every time you take them out. The alarm will go off after you’ve given yourself a reasonable amount of time to eat, and then the aligners get back to work straightening your teeth!
  • Brush and floss every time you eat or drink – You know that brushing and flossing are important for everyone’s oral health because they prevent plaque buildup. But for Invisalign patients, oral hygiene is absolutely imperative – and you’re going to be brushing more often than usual. This is because it’s easy for acids and food particles to get trapped against teeth if you replace your aligners after eating but skip cleaning your teeth. The last thing you want is for your straight smile to be filled with cavities – make sure to clean your teeth every time you eat, and this won’t be an issue.
  • Adjust your eating schedule – This might not be necessary for every patient, as we all have different snacking habits. If you tend to eat 3 meals a day and forgo snacks, then Invisalign will fit into that schedule fairly easily. But if you tend to eat small amounts of food throughout the day and just have 1 larger meal at dinnertime (as many of us do in our nonstop-busy era), this is going to prove tricky. Since you need to clean your teeth every time you eat, snacks become frustrating and end up taking up a lot of time. It’s going to be important that you eat fewer, larger meals to get enough calories without having to constantly pop out your aligners and brush your teeth. For this reason, many Invisalign patients actually lose weight because they eat less than they typically would.
  • Put together a travel toothbrushing kit – Think about all the places that you eat every day – home, work, school, a friend’s home, restaurants. If you’re cleaning your teeth post-dining, you’ll need to have a small toothbrush, toothpaste & floss that can accompany you. Visit your local drugstore and put together a small kit that can live in your purse, backpack or briefcase and keep your teeth clean no matter where you eat.

Other Invisalign Patient Responsibilities

While these tasks won’t be necessary daily, they’re also crucial to your success.

  1. Change out your aligners as instructed – You’ll need to switch to new aligners at specific intervals. This keeps your straightening moving forward and your progress on schedule. Don’t delay the swap due to the initial discomfort. Soon enough, you’ll feel completely comfortable again and your teeth will continue to shift as planned.
  2. Don’t skip follow-up appointments – You’ll need to visit the office for routine checkups. This allows your Invisalign provider to ensure that everything is looking good and your teeth are shifting predictably. If you miss an appointment, it could take a little time to reschedule, so try to make these trips a priority.

After Invisalign Treatment: What Happens Next?

You’re not completely finished with your orthodontic treatment once you’ve completed your course of Invisalign aligners. It’s important that you wear retainers at night. This will help ensure that your straighter smile lasts for many years to come.

Considering Invisalign? Whether you’ve never discussed it with a provider or have already had a consultation, we’re happy to provide more information or a second opinion. Reach out today!

Greenbelt Invisalign | Invisalign Greenbelt | Invisalign Provider Greenbelt
The Quickest & Easiest Way to Help Your Kids Avoid Cavities

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

Greenbelt Kids Dental Health - Infographic

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.

 

Woodbridge General Dentist | General Dentist Woodbridge | General Dentistry Woodbridge

 

How Patients Are Getting Straight Teeth without Orthodontic Treatment

straighten teeth Greenbelt

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:

Lumineer next to contact lens showing thickness

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
Dentist Answers: What is TMJ?

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

Greenbelt Jaw Pain Infographic

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.

 

Woodbridge General Dentist | General Dentistry Woodbridge | General Dentist Woodbridge
Get Your Free Digital Smile Makeover Today

free Greenbelt digital smile makeover

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.

  1. 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.
  2. Your dentist takes a photograph of your smiling face.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.

Greenbelt Lumineers | Lumineers Greenbelt | Porcelain Veneers Greenbelt
Soda and Your Smile: How to Avoid Cavities

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

Greenbelt Pop and Teeth infographic

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.

Woodbridge General Dentist | General Dentistry Woodbridge | General Dentist Woodbridge
Does Insurance Cover Dental Implants?

Receptionist Looking At ID Card From Patient

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?

Greenbelt dental implants coupon

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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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 ...


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