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DIY Your Sleep Apnea with Essential Oils | Dallas Dentist

ThinkstockPhotos-453253687If you are suffering from sleep apnea, it is important that you seek medical advice. If it gets severe enough, it may need to be treated with airway pressure devices (CPAP) that help keep your airways open. It is also possible to treat your condition at home by using certain essential oils. Here are the various ways you can use essential oils to relieve your sleep apnea symptoms:

  • Rubbing the oil into the heels of the feet
  • Rubbing the oil into your chest, neck or under your nostrils
  • Diluting the oil in a glass of water as a gargle mixture
  • Diluting the oil in a spray mixture
  • Using a diffuser near your bed—if you own a diffuser this a great solution as you can inhale the oil over longer periods.

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.

  1. 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.

  1. 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 a dental appointment to evaluate your case.

To learn more about essential oils, please contact Dr Alhadef  at 214-368-2434 to schedule a consultation or visit our website at www.dallascosmeticdental.com.

Dr. Gary Alhadef, DDS proudly serves Dallas and all surrounding areas.

Why Whiten Your Teeth?| Dallas Dentist

187957730Bright white teeth are something we all desire to have. 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.

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.

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
  • Thinner enamel due to natural aging
  • 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 your dentist what the best plan of attack is to get your smile the whitest it can be at your next dental appointment.

 

Don’t Let Summer Ruin Your Smile | Dallas Dentist

Beach sports

When school lets out and we head out on our family vacations, it seems likely our daily schedules relax as we begin to. Our diets become less healthy and thus, so does our dental routine. The problem is, after your fantastic getaway, you may have some dental issues arise. In order to keep your family’s dental health, follow these handy tips:

Make it fun. Kids are going to be the toughest fight when it comes to keeping up dental hygiene any time of year, but especially during the summer. Why not make it fun? Visual reminders are awesome for helping kids create consistent brushing habits. Post a calendar by the sink with space for two stars each day – morning and night. Each week, if they kept their brushing up, reward them. It may sound like cheating, but children love working for a goal. Just try not to make the reward bad for teeth.

Brush in time. It is important that you brush your teeth for at least two minutes, but for little ones that could be tough. Have a playlist or a dance video ready and dance, dance, dance your way to clean teeth!

Clean up the diet. Summertime is all about sugar. Try to minimize the sugary snacks. Replace popsicles and cookies with sugar-free snacks like nuts and watermelon. When you do enjoy sweets, Rinse with some water to prevent sugar from sticking around. Making your family’s diet healthier will always help your dental, and overall, health. Dental health isn’t just for tiny humans, it’s a family affair.

To learn more about summertime dental tips, please contact Dr Alhadef  at 214-368-2434 to schedule a consultation or visit our website at www.dallascosmeticdental.com.

Dr. Gary Alhadef, DDS proudly serves Dallas and all surrounding areas.

Are You a Good Candidate for Dental Veneers? | Dallas Dentist

cerec same day crowns dallas txIf your teeth are less than perfect aesthetically, porcelain veneers may be the ideal dental solution for you. Porcelain veneers are used to correct aesthetic issues such as gaps between teeth; broken, chipped or cracked teeth; unsightly stained or yellowed teeth; and misshapen or crooked teeth.

How do veneers fix all of these issues? Veneers are thin shells of ceramic material that are approximately .3mm to 0.5mm thick but are very strong once bonded to the front surfaces of your teeth. Porcelain is an extremely durable material that possesses properties similar to natural tooth enamel. However, unlike natural teeth, porcelain does not decay, stain or yellow over the years like natural teeth. Porcelain veneers are wonderful cosmetic dentistry option because they are custom made and colored to create the perfect smile for you.

Porcelain veneers require several visits in just a few short weeks. Your first visit will be a consultation to go over your smile issues and discuss the results. In the second appointment, your teeth will be prepared by removing a very small amount of enamel from the front sides of the teeth in order to receive the porcelain veneers and a mold of your teeth is taken to create your veneers. Temporary porcelain veneers will be placed while you wait. On your final appointment, your permanent porcelain veneers will be placed and permanently bonded to the front sides of your teeth. With good care, your porcelain veneers will look good for many years to come.

 

 

Stop Your Snoring, Save Your Relationship | Dallas Dentist

snoringNo one wants to know that they snore. Unfortunately, there are very few ways to know that you snore because you are asleep. We tend to find out we do by a significant other that shares the bed with you, and chances are, they aren’t thinking about it in a positive way. That’s right – snoring doesn’t just affect the person doing it, it affects their partner as well. If it is left untreated, it can begin to cause friction within the home. Here are some things you can do to help keep snoring from playing a negative part in an otherwise great relationship:

Try sleeping alone. By separating the rooms, you and your partner sleep. This is one solution, however may lead to loneliness and frustration in one or both partners.

Learn to relax. One of the easier ways to prevent sleep issues is to relax. Try meditation or yoga. There are lots of techniques out there that will help relax your mind and muscle tension while you doze.

Rein in the frustration. You are not mad at your partner, you are mad that you didn’t get a great night’s sleep because of their snoring. Don’t let small arguments while you’re tired corrupt your feelings towards your partner.

Go natural. This may sound like a fad, but there are lots of essential oils that help soothe a restless sleep – for both you and your significant others.

Work as a team for a solution. Typically, the non-snorer may grow into a degree of resentment for putting up with the snorer and may feel like he or she is not trying to stop the problem.

To learn more about snoring, please contact Dr Alhadef  at 214-368-2434 to schedule a consultation or visit our website at www.dallascosmeticdental.com.

Dr. Gary Alhadef, DDS proudly serves Dallas and all surrounding areas.

Gum Disease: The Beginning Stages of So Much More | Dallas Dentist

506889025Research has shown, and experts agree, that there is a connection between gum disease and other chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and respiratory infections. Keeping your gums healthy may not only keep gum disease at bay, but it may also help manage or prevent other health conditions. Dr. Gary Alhadef is a Dallas, Texas cosmetic dentist who has also worked with numerous dental problems for more than 20 years and can help you achieve and maintain healthy gums.

What is Gum Disease? Gingivitis is the mildest form of gum disease. It can affect one or many teeth and begins when the bacteria in plaque causes the gums to become inflamed, red, and bleed easily, but usually does not cause pain. Untreated gingivitis can advance to the more serious disease called periodontitis. This disease is a chronic bacterial infection that affects the gums and the bones surrounding your teeth. It can lead to serious complications including tooth loss.

There are several health problems associated with poor gum health.

Heart Disease. Research has found that people with gum disease are twice as likely to suffer from Coronary Artery Disease as those with healthy gums. Oral bacteria can enter the blood stream and attach to fatty plaques in the heart’s blood vessels. Clots can block normal blood flow, restricting oxygen required for the heart to function. This can cause a heart attack.

Premature Birth. Risk factors like smoking, alcohol, and drugs are known to cause birth issues. Evidence also suggests that gum disease is a risk factor. Pregnant women with unhealthy gums are seven times more likely to have a premature baby or one with a low birth weight.

Diabetes. Diabetics are more likely to have gum disease than those who are not, likely because diabetics are susceptible to contracting infections. The relationship between gum disease and diabetes works both ways – gum disease can make it difficult to control blood sugar.

Bacterial Respiratory Infections. Bacterial respiratory infections can be caused by inhaling small droplets from the mouth and throat into the lungs. These droplets contain bacteria that multiply in the lungs and lead to damage. Research also indicates that bacteria found in the mouth and throat can worsen existing lung conditions.

To learn more about how Dr. Gary Alhadef can help you maintain healthy gums, please contact his Dallas, Texas dental office to discuss gum disease by scheduling a consultation. Visit our website at www.dallascosmeticdental.com to learn more about veneers.

Dr. Gary Alhadef, DDS proudly serves Dallas and all surrounding areas.

Can a Great Smile Change Your Life? | Dallas Dentist

When you don’t have the perfect smile, it is tough to be in certain situations. A smile is the first thing someone notices about you. If yours is flawed, it feels like you are perceived differently by others. But it’s difficult not to think, can having a better smile change my life?

In our western culture, it is common to see kids with braces, adults whitening their teeth (the most practiced cosmetic dental procedure), veneer procedures increasing in number etc. Why is that? Your smile is one of the first things people notice about you.

Humans unconsciously judge one another within the first eight seconds of meeting. A poor smile can hold you back from so many opportunities such as:

  • Employment
  • Promotion
  • Self confidence
  • Relationships

Our society places such high regard on one’s physical appearance, that a great smile is almost mandatory. So, now the question becomes, how can I improve my smile to improve my life?

Veneers are a simple and effective way to improve your smile and a number of dental issues. Veneers are basically a custom perfect smile shell that gives you the glamorously straight, white smile you have always wanted. Patients rave that after they make the switch to veneers, they experience a confidence boost and their professional and personal lives are enhanced!

But what exactly entails having to keep veneers up? Does it take a lot of effort to keep them looking fantastic? Firstly, it all comes down to the basics. Brushing and flossing daily is not only good for your veneers, but will also help to prevent future veneers. Use a nonabrasive toothpaste containing fluoride to ensure that that it won’t scratch your veneers, leaving them prone to issues like periodontitis, which can cause your gums to recede. Because your veneers are placed right at the gum line, if your gums do happen to recede, the appearance of your veneers could be compromised.

If staining is one of your main issues, staying clear from beverages like coffee, wine and tea is a great idea to keep your new teeth pearly white. Porcelain is very resistant to staining by nature, but the cement used to affix the veneers is prone to staining over time.

Chipped teeth are generally caused by accidental incidents, but can also be caused by biting your fingernails or munching on things like hard candy or ice. While it seems like a harmless act, using your teeth to do things like this can break or dislodge your teeth, but can also do the same to your veneer. Stay away from using your teeth as a chisel. While they are always handy, being in your mouth, it isn’t good for your teeth. Similarly, if you are known to clench or grind your teeth, like while you sleep, this is also a bad habit that is really doing damage to your teeth. Talk to your dentist. They can create a night guard that will prevent your teeth from wearing down and your veneers from accidentally chipping.

So, if you would like to literally change your life and get the smile of your dreams, then contact your dentist today to see if veneers are right for you!

If you think that you may be ready for a more perfect smile, contact Dr. Gary Alhadef, DDS to schedule a consult today. Visit our website at www.dallascosmeticdental.com to learn more about veneers.

 

Sleep Apnea: Signs and Symptoms

Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a common and potentially serious sleep disorder in which your breathing repeatedly stops and starts during sleep. It occurs when there are repeated episodes of complete or partial blockage in your upper airway during sleep. While this is occurring, your diaphragm and chest muscles are working hard to open your obstructed airway and pull air into your lungs. This can decrease the flow of oxygen to your vital organs and cause irregular heart rhythms.

It can be difficult to identify sleep apnea on your own, since the most noticeable symptoms occur while you’re sleeping. A family member or partner may notice signs or symptoms of your sleeping disorder first. The signs and symptoms they may notice are the pauses while snoring, following by a gasping or chocking noise. Some signs of sleep apnea you may notice may be trouble concentrating and fighting sleepiness during the day, at work or while operating a vehicle. Sometimes you may even catch yourself rapidly falling asleep during the quiets times of your day when you’re not being active.

More Signs and Symptoms of Sleep Apnea Include:

  • Headaches upon waking up
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Memory or learning problems
  • Feeling depressed, irritable or having mood swings/ personality changes
  • Waking up frequently to use bathroom
  • Dry mouth or sore through upon waking up

Sleep Apnea is more common in men than women. In order to diagnose sleep apnea, your doctor will have to perform a physical exam and take your medical and sleep history. Your doctor may ask your family members or the individuals that live with you about your sleeping habits.

If you think that you may be suffering from sleep apnea, contact Dr. Gary Alhadef, DDS to schedule a consult today. Visit our website at www.dallascosmeticdental.com to learn more about sleep apnea.

Benefits of Having Straight Teeth

Woman with straight teeth smilingNature doesn’t always provide straight teeth but there’s ample evidence that having straight teeth delivers extra benefits to your health and wellbeing. Whether you’re born with straight teeth, or straighten them with orthodontics, read on for reasons why this is a smart idea and a great health investment.

Better Bite

Straight teeth provide the correct foundation for chewing.  When your bite doesn’t align properly, it can cause pain along with dental problems. To check your bite in a mirror, expose your teeth, bite normally, and observe whether the uppers and lowers align normally. Each tooth should more or less line up with its twin. Misaligned teeth (crooked or crowded teeth) can cause issues from chronic jaw or tooth pain to excessive wear on tooth enamel.  A poor bite increases stress on teeth and contributes to a shortened “life span” where teeth begin to crack and develop other signs of fatigue.  If you want your teeth to last a lifetime (and who doesn’t?) a healthy bite is the best way to ensure this.

Cleaning is Easy

Cleaning straight teeth is much easier than cleaning crooked teeth, which offer a multitude of hard-to-get-to hiding places for plaque and tiny bits of food.  Not cleaning these hiding spots properly will first lead to excessive cavities. The next stage may be gingivitis, or an inflammation between the teeth and gums.  Today science links chronic inflammation with a variety of health disorders including heart disease and cancer, so dealing with ANY inflammation when it appears is essential. If you don’t deal with it, an ongoing toxic mix of bacteria and inflammation can then progress to periodontitis, a very serious disease which causes tooth loss. In worst case scenarios, periodontitis may even contribute to heart attacks and strokes.

On a practical level, any toothbrush has an easier time brushing a nice straight tooth surface. The more contact your toothbrush makes with the entirety of the tooth face, the cleaner your teeth. Flossing straight teeth is simpler too. Crowded teeth often require hand acrobatics to get the floss between teeth, and even then, with some teeth, it’s impossible.

Looks Great

In our culture, we associate straight teeth with beauty, vitality, health and even status. Being born with perfectly straight teeth is actually rare. It’s typically achieved through orthodontic treatment. So people who have straight teeth are often assumed to be more wealthy and successful than their peers with crooked teeth.  For many parents, the ability to provide orthodontic treatment for their kids has a strong emotional component, because they want their children to have every advantage.  And straight teeth and a great smile do provide a self-confidence boost in social settings.

Curious about whether your teeth could benefit from straightening?  Set up an appointment for a consultation. Today advanced technology like Invisalign means straight teeth can be achieved in a fraction of the time it used to take. And even better, the invisible aligners ensure no one will even realize you’re doing it.

 

How to Help Teens Follow Good Dental Habits

Image Courtesy SCA Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget

You can’t get them to clean their room. How do you make sure your teenager remembers to use their toothbrush?

Setting up good dental habits for a lifetime begins in childhood. But this regular task can take a hit during adolescence when rebellion against rules and authority suddenly becomes the norm. Teens question the ‘whys’ behind everything: “Why should I have to brush my teeth twice a day? And after meals, are you serious?”

Teenagers are often sensitive about grooming issues, and the simple question, “did you brush your teeth today?” can provoke a surly response.

Because battles over control are common, asking whether or not teeth are brushed or flossed can produce a kid who won’t brush for a week. And then grins at you with a crusty smile.

Like so many elements of parenting, during the teen years, it’s wise to change your approach. Teens won’t appreciate demands, but do respond to positive incentives.

Here are some ways to help your teen keep up great dental habits during adolescence:

 

  1. Move from authority to encourager. Instead of asking whether or not your teen is brushing, remark how nice their teeth look when you catch them with a toothbrush in hand.
  2. Bring home a whitening toothbrush with fluoride, just for them. Because teens want to be attractive, they will tend to brush more to get a whiter smile.
  3. Remark on their breath. Reward your teen with encouragement when you catch him or her freshly brushed. “Wow, your breath smells great! Are you doing something different?”
  4. Strike a deal for dental whitening. Teens today crave that white celebrity smile. They may have nagged you for ZOOM Whitening, or want dental trays. Allow your teen this treat, but remind them that that unless they brush twice a day, initial whitening effects will dim over time.
  5. Compliment your teen’s friends who have great smile. If your teen isn’t brushing regularly, this may make them think. . You can also remark on teen actors like Taylor Lautner who have gorgeous smiles.
  6. Share your own experience.  By middle age, a lack of regular dental care and brushing will create problems from shifting teeth to gum bleeding to bad breath. Use your own problems as a lesson and mention to your teen that you wish you’d had better habits at their age. . Explain your own fears about dentures and/or tooth loss.
  7. Help build responsibility by allowing teens to make their appointments for cleanings. Encourage them to set up a year’s worth of cleaning appointments and plug it in their phone calendars.
  8. Compliment your teen on good habits. It’s simple, but often overlooked. If your teen IS brushing regularly, mention that you’re proud of your teen’s follow through and discipline.
  9. Consider buying your teen an electric toothbrush such as Sonicare. They’re not only fun to use, but the built-in alarm will ensure a full two minutes brushing.
  10. If your teen needs Invisalign braces, strike another deal.

 

It’s a fact that teens may undergo a rebellious period of avoiding brushing, but most recover this habit eventually.  Take heart, being a teenager doesn’t last forever. It just feels like it.