Teeth Whitening

459899307Bright white teeth is something we all desire to have and if you’re tired of having yellow, stained teeth, you are not alone. What can be done about your stained and discolored teeth? Teeth whitening, of course!

Teeth whitening restores natural tooth color and bleaching whitens beyond the natural color. There are many methods available, such as brushing, bleaching strips, bleaching pen, bleaching gel, and laser bleaching. Teeth whitening has become the most requested procedure in cosmetic dentistry today. More than 100 million Americans whiten their teeth one way or another.

So if you brush, floss and visit your dentist regularly then why are your teeth still discolored? This happens because the outer layers of your teeth get stained over the years by consumption of certain foods, soda, wine and smoking.

When these outside sources of staining are left to sit on the teeth all day until your next brushing, the dentin on your teeth becomes yellowish or darkened. The best way to help your stained discolored teeth is with one of the easiest cosmetic dentistry procedures, professional teeth whitening.

Contributing factors to yellowing, stained teeth:

  • Tetracycline based antibiotics used before the age of 8 years old
  • Excessive exposure to fluoride as a child
  • Internal bleeding due to trauma
  • Discoloration due to a health condition
  • Natural aging- as time goes by enamel gets thinner and thinner and will get a yellowish hue
  • Soda
  • Wine
  • Smoking
  • Caffeine

The most popular and convenient method is in office professional treatments. Your dentist may even offer a custom tray for at home whitening. Ask Dr. Alhadef what the best plan of attack is to get your smile the whitest it can be. 

For more information on teeth whitening contact Dr. Gary Alhadef, DDS. Make an appointment by calling 469-718-0128 or visit our website at www.dallascosmeticdental.com.

The Effects of Smoking on Your Oral Health

166219324Everyone knows that smoking causes harmful effects on your entire body but what about your mouth specifically? The most obvious effects being bad breath, tooth discoloration and loss of taste and smell, but there can be more serious periodontal problems.

When you take a puff of that cigarette, cigar or pipe, think beyond what it’s doing to your lungs and your heart. Think about what it’s doing to your mouth and teeth. Cigarette smoke contains over 4,800 chemicals, 69 of which are known to cause cancer. As you inhale, the smoke lingers in your mouth before you exhale, even if you don’t inhale fully. Imagine what those 4,800 chemicals hanging around in your mouth can do to your teeth and gums. None of it is good!

Every puff of smoke that gets into your body starts by passing your lips, tongue, teeth and gums.

Tobacco-related conditions of the mouth include:

  • Brown to blackish staining of teeth, dentures and dental restorations.
  • Increased risk of leukoplakia (a lesion in the mouth which can develop into cancer).
  • Increased risk of tooth decay and tooth loss.
  • Bad breath and impaired taste.
  • Smoker’s melanosis (brown spots on the gums).
  • Black hairy tongue (bacteria, yeast and debris collecting on the tiny bumps on the tongue).
  • Smoker’s palate (the roof of the mouth becomes thickened and pale or white).
  • Dental implants are more likely to fail.
  • Some enzyme activity in saliva is reduced by chemicals in tobacco smoke(Source: quit.org).

Not to mention thousands of people die yearly from mouth cancers.

If you are a smoker, you should perform self-checks on a regular basis. Smokers should check for sores around the face, mouth, and neck. If the sores persist after two weeks, it is a sign of a more serious problem. People who smoke should also check for recurrent bleeding in the mouth, lesions, swelling, and lumps. White, red, or dark patches on the inside of the mouth, under the tongue, and on the cheeks that last more than two weeks should be brought to the attention of your dentist immediately.

When you quit smoking, you’ll be at less risk for gum disease, bad breath, stained teeth and cancer. You’ll be healthier and have a huge reason to smile!

For more information on your oral health contact Dr. Gary Alhadef, DDS. Make an appointment by calling 469-718-0128 or visit our website at www.dallascosmeticdental.com.

A Smile Makeover with Veneers!

porcelain veneersDental veneers are a commonly proposed solution to a wide range of problems. The basic concept is simple: the outer layer of the tooth is removed, and a new, hard, shiny shell is installed in its place.

The basic description sounds simple, but the flexibility provided by this basic procedure makes it a viable option for a number of potential problems. When teeth are discolored (due to root canal treatments, various drugs, or even large fillings), a veneer can provide a bright white surface. When teeth are worn down, cracked, or chipped, veneers can provide a strong, intact surface to repair the patient’s bite and smile. When teeth are misaligned or unusually shaped, veneers can provide a strong, well-shaped surface to match the other teeth in the patient’s mouth.  When gaps exist between two teeth, veneers can be used to narrow the gap and provide a more natural looking smile.

Veneers typically utilize porcelain, which is well tolerated by gum tissue, and provides a strong, natural looking surface that matches nearby teeth. However, patients considering veneers should consult their dentist to discuss the possible downsides, such as the fact that they are non-reversible, difficult to repair, and may not be a good choice for patients who have existing dental problems (such as decaying teeth, as the veneer will not solve the problem of decay, and may complicate fillings in the future).

There are often options to veneers – such as bonding and crowns – and insurance coverage varies by cause (often times veneers are considered cosmetic, but some cases may be covered). Talk to your dentist to discuss whether veneers are right for you.

For more information on veneers contact Dr. Gary Alhadef, DDS. Make an appointment by calling 469-718-0128 or visit our website at www.dallascosmeticdental.com.

Preventing Tooth Decay

cerec same day crowns dallas txWe all dread hearing the word ‘cavity’ at our dental visits. Tooth decay  is probably the most prevalent oral disease, affecting almost everyone during his or her lifetime. The good news is that it’s treatable and is essentially preventable. Tooth decay is the destruction of tooth structure and can affect both the enamel and the dentin layer of the tooth. The tooth decay process begins with dental plaque. Bacteria, which naturally live in everyone’s mouth but thrive in plaque, utilize carbohydrates from food, especially refined sugar, to produce acid. Acid, if produced frequently, will demineralize the tooth enamel structure, which is the hardest substance in the human body. From there the acid will continue to eat through the underlying dentin layer until the bacteria and their waste products reach the pulp or the nerve. Left untreated, tooth decay can lead to root infection and eventually loss of the tooth.

To prevent tooth decay:

  • Brush your teeth at least twice a day with a fluoride-containing toothpaste. Preferably, brush after each meal and especially before going to bed.
  • Clean between your teeth daily with dental floss or interdental cleaners
  • Eat nutritious and balanced meals and limit snacks. Avoid carbohydrates such as candy, pretzels and chips, which can remain on the tooth surface. If sticky foods are eaten, brush your teeth soon afterwards.
  • Check with your dentist about use of supplemental fluoride, which strengthens your teeth.
  • Ask your dentist about dental sealants (a plastic protective coating) applied to the chewing surfaces of your back teeth (molars) to protect them from decay.
  • Drink fluoridated water. At least a pint of fluoridated water each day is needed to protect children from tooth decay.
  • Visit your dentist regularly for professional cleanings and oral exam.

Also mouth rinse containing fluoride can help prevent tooth decay, according to the American Dental Association. Researchers are developing new means to prevent tooth decay. One study found that a chewing gum that contains the sweetener xylitol temporarily prevents the growth of bacteria that cause tooth decay.

Finally, because you may be asymptomatic and unaware of the beginning of tooth decay, it is critical that you visit your dentist regularly for a check-up. Some cavities are hard to detect, especially those between the teeth. Sometimes, only x-rays can identify them. Your dentist will also give you a professional cleaning, which is an important part of prevention.

For more information on your oral health contact Dr. Gary Alhadef, DDS. Make an appointment by calling 469-718-0128 or visit our website at www.dallascosmeticdental.com.

April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month

166219324April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month.The American Cancer Society recommends oral cancer screening exams every 3 years for persons over age 20 and annually for those over age 40.

Oral cancer refers to cancer that develops in any of the parts that make up the mouth. Oral cancer is one of several types of cancer grouped in a category called head and neck cancers. Mouth cancer and other head and neck cancers are often treated similarly.

If you notice any of the below changes, contact your dentist or health care professional immediately.

What Are the Symptoms of Oral Cancer?

The most common symptoms of oral cancer include:

  • Swellings/thickenings, lumps or bumps, rough spots/crusts/or eroded areas on the lips, gums, or other areas inside the mouth
  • The development of velvety white, red, or speckled (white and red) patches in the mouth
  • Unexplained bleeding in the mouth
  • Unexplained numbness, loss of feeling, or pain/tenderness in any area of the face, mouth, or neck
  • Persistent sores on the face, neck, or mouth that bleed easily and do not heal within 2 weeks
  • A soreness or feeling that something is caught in the back of the throat
  • Difficulty chewing or swallowing, speaking, or moving the jaw or tongue
  • Hoarseness, chronic sore throat, or change in voice
  • Ear pain
  • A change in the way your teeth or dentures fit together
  • Dramatic weight loss

How Is Oral Cancer Diagnosed?

As part of your routine dental exam, your dentist will conduct an oral cancer screening exam. More specifically, your dentist will feel for any lumps or irregular tissue changes in your neck, head, face, and oral cavity. When examining your mouth, your dentist will look for any sores or discolored tissue as well as check for any signs and symptoms mentioned above.

Your dentist may perform an oral brush biopsy if he or she sees tissue in your mouth that looks suspicious. This test is painless and involves taking a small sample of the tissue and analyzing it for abnormal cells. Alternatively, if the tissue looks more suspicious, your dentist may recommend a scalpel biopsy. This procedure usually requires local anesthesia and may be performed by your dentist or a specialist. These tests are necessary to detect oral cancer early, before it has had a chance to progress and spread.

How Is Oral Cancer Treated?

Oral cancer is treated the same way many other cancers are treated — with surgery to remove the cancerous growth, followed by radiation therapy and/or chemotherapy to destroy any remaining cancer cells.

What Can I Do to Prevent Oral Cancer?

To prevent oral cancer:

  • Don’t smoke or use any tobacco products and drink alcohol in moderation (and refrain from binge drinking).
  • Eat a well balanced diet.
  • Limit your exposure to the sun. Repeated exposure increases the risk of cancer on the lip, especially the lower lip. When in the sun, use UV-A/B-blocking sun protective lotions on your skin, as well as your lips.

See your dentist on a regular schedule. Even though you may be conducting frequent self exams, sometimes dangerous spots or sores in the mouth can be very tiny and difficult to see on your own.

Early detection can improve the chance of successful treatment. During your next dental appointment, ask your dentist to perform an oral exam.

For more information on your oral health contact Dr. Gary Alhadef, DDS. Make an appointment by calling 469-718-0128 or visit our website at www.dallascosmeticdental.com.

The Benefits of Flossing

cerec same day crowns dallas txWe all know we’re supposed to floss daily but lets be honest most of us don’t! We’re sure you all dread when you’re sitting in the dentists chair and they ask, ‘How often do you floss?’ While you’re calculating in your head how much you floss and if you should fib to the dentist about your flossing habits lets go over why it’s so important to floss daily.

1- Flossing and Brushing Are More Effective Than Brushing Alone

A toothbrush works to removing plaque with its bristles. Brushing alone has one big drawback: A toothbrush’s bristles can’t adequately clean between the teeth or under the gums. That’s where floss comes in, to get in those tiny spaces between your teeth to get the grime out your toothbrush can’t reach.


2- Flossing Protects Your Gums

Where the gums and teeth meet are where flossing plays its major role. Particles of food can get lodged here, and plaque in this area will harden over time to form tartar, that your dentist will remove with a scraper. Tartar buildup can lead to gingivitis.


3- Flossing Helps Prevent Other Diseases

Gum disease can have effects that go beyond discolored teeth, discomfort and bad breath. Research has shown that the bacteria in an unhealthy mouth can harm the rest of the body, leading to heart disease, diabetes and respiratory illness.

So the next time your dentists asks if you’ve been flossing regularly, we hope you’ll be able to answer with a resounding, ‘Yes!’

For more information on your oral health contact Dr. Gary Alhadef, DDS. Make an appointment by calling 469-718-0128 or visit our website at www.dallascosmeticdental.com.

The Benefits of an Oral Rinse

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We all love that fresh feeling you get after rinsing with mouthwash. Did you know your mouthwash is doing more than just giving your breath a boost? Rinsing daily with certain mouthwashes can improve your oral health. We’re talking whitening your teeth, helping to prevent gum disease and fighting plaque!

What are the benefits of swishing daily with an oral rinse?

1) Freshens breath – First and most obviously, mouthwash temporarily reduces bad breath. Mouthwash kills bacteria associated with causing bad breath leaving you with minty fresh breath.

2) Removes particles – Most people use mouthwash only after brushing. This is a perfectly fine practice, but used before before brushing to rinse out loose particles in your mouth will make the brushing and flossing more effective.

3) Prevents Plaque build-up – Various mouthwashes help prevent plaque build up on your gums, in-between teeth, and on the surface of your teeth. Although it prevents the build up of plague, it cannot reduce the plaque that already exists on your teeth. So remember to always brush and floss before plaque becomes a problem.

4) Stop cavities from forming – Regular use of mouthwash before and after you brush and floss, you can reduce the chances of cavities forming. Mouthwashes that contain fluoride can prevent cavities and strengthen your enamel. Remember, not all mouthwashes contain fluoride. Be sure to check the label on your mouthwash before purchasing.

Mouthwash is not a substitute for brushing and flossing and should be used in conjunction with good oral health habits. It only takes a moment to rinse but the positive impact on your oral health is much greater. With rinsing daily you can successfully navigate around dental problems.

To make an appointment with Dallas Cosmetic Dental call 214-368-2434. Visit our website and learn more about the services we offer at http://www.dallascosmeticdental.com.

The Top 10 Cosmetic Dentistry Procedures

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One of the greatest things an individual can wear is a smile. Your smile can act as a boost of self confidence. Modern cosmetic dentistry has blessed the world with many advanced procedures used to reshape smiles everywhere. In order to determine which cosmetic dentistry procedure is for you; make sure you consult your dentist first. Here are the top 10 cosmetic dental procedures available today!

Teeth Whitening or Bleaching

Oftentimes, the appearance of a whiter smile is all it takes to raise confidence. Teeth whitening or bleaching is done in a dental office, however you may be able to retrieve at home whitening kits. This treatment is used to eliminate stains and discoloration.

Dental implants

This procedure is a better alternative to traditional dentures due to the fact that it can give you the kind of teeth that look and feel more natural. The teeth are implanted directly into the bone which will eliminate the worry of your teeth falling out.

Dental Bonding

Teeth that are crooked or broken due to injury or other reasons are a large issue. Luckily, dental bonding can fix most of these issues. Clay like material is applied to teeth and a special kind of light is used to harden the material.

Veneers

Veneers are thin shells of porcelain that are attached to the front of teeth. Veneers are used specifically for individuals with tooth discoloration or heavy stains. This procedure could correct damaged teeth and effectively change the way your teeth look.

Tooth Colored Fillings

Fillings are most commonly used to repair damages or holes caused by cavities. They often come in a metallic forms that are noticeable when you smile, however, tooth colored fillings easily blend with your teeth.

Dental Bridge

Dental bridges help eliminate the flat look caused by the absence of teeth. A denture is placed on the location of the missing tooth and is connected by a crown; this brings back the natural appearances of your smile.

Dental Contouring

Contouring is used to align or straighten crooked or overlapped teeth. Contouring also helps individuals who have problems with the shape of their teeth.

Cosmetic Gum Surgery

Individuals who have the appearance of long teeth actually may be suffering from the recession of gums due to the natural aging process or gum disease.

Custom Dentures

This is the simplest form of cosmetic dental procedures when it comes to replacing missing teeth. Dentures are used when several teeth are missing and possibly more need to be removed.

Accelerated Orthodontics

This is one of the most efficient ways to achieve perfectly straight or aligned teeth. This is better than getting braces because the process will normally take about 3-8 months.

If you are looking to improve your smile and are looking to take advantage of some of these great cosmetic dentistry procedures call Dallas Cosmetic Dental at 214-368-2434. Visit our website and learn more about the services we offer at http://www.dallascosmeticdental.com.

 

Getting to know Porcelain Veneers

porcelain veneers

Before we dive into the benefits of porcelain veneers over other options, it is important to know what they are. Porcelain veneers are essentially thin, porcelain-composite material shells that are bonded to the front of your teeth. Porcelain is great option because it looks more like your natural teeth than any other option. Here is a small account of the numerous benefits to porcelain veneers:

  • Durable material
  • Mimics tooth enamel
  • Does not decay
  • Does not stain or yellow
  • Custom made for you

Veneer options

The professional staff here at Dallas Cosmetic Dental ensures the quality of practice and patient satisfaction by being up-to-date on the latest cosmetic dental technology has to offer. They maintain up-to-date training and employ the latest methods, materials and procedures. We offer a range of veneers, from MAC Veneers to Porcelain. MAC Veneers are made by MicroDental Labs, which are the world’s largest and advanced cosmetic dental lab. MAC Veneers are twice as strong as other veneers and can last a lifetime.

Veneer procedure

In the initial consultation, you and Dr. Alhadef will discuss the problem you have with your smile, your goals and the various veneer options available to ensure that porcelain veneers are right for you.

During the second visit, you will begin the preparation process, which involves the removal of a small portion of tooth enamel imperative to securing the veneer. The goal is to have the veneers appear seamlessly and look as natural as possible.

After preparation, a mold will be taken of your teeth and sent to a lab that will, with specific instruction and knowledge of your needs, create the veneer. The time between molding your bite and receiving the completed veneer will take time, so you will be provided with a temporary set.

Once the veneers come back from the lab, the last step in the process is the final fitting. The veneers will be bonded to the teeth using a special hardening composite glue-like material to ensure stability of the veneer against your teeth. Once hardened with a special LED light, you are sent on your way with a gorgeous, natural-looking smile.

If you are considering porcelain veneers to correct your smile, contact Gary E. Alhadef DDS today at 469-718-0128. Visit our website to learn more at www.dallascosmeticdental.com.

Natural Remedies for Sleep Apnea

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There are a multitude of natural remedies that individuals who suffer from snoring or sleep apnea can use. In most mild cases, these techniques help or relieve this sleep disorder.

Valerian Root – An herb used for calming and sedating properties, valerian is shown to be useful for insomnia and chronic sleep disorders.

Melatonin – Melatonin is a hormone that is secreted from the brain’s pineal gland. The gland regulates a person’s biological clock, particularly day and night cycles.

Kampo Extract – Kampo is a concoction consisting of five medicinal herbs: Pinella, Hoelen, Magnolia bark, Perilla, and Ginger.

Vervain - Vervain is oftentimes used to relieve anxiety and depression. It has been shown to improve mild sleep apnea symptoms.

If your snoring or sleep apnea gets worse and starts effecting your daily life, it’s time to make an appointment with Dallas Cosmetic Dental. Dr. Alhadef will evaluate your case and see if you are a good candidate for a snoring appliance. Call Dallas Cosmetic Dental today for more information at 469-718-0128 or www.dallascosmeticdental.com.