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In the age of instagram and selfie’s people are always looking for an edge to look better. Cosmetic dentistry offers many options to achieve a whiter, brighter smile. These can include teeth whitening, orthodontics, porcelain crowns, and especially porcelain veneers. Porcelain veneers can give you the smile you always dreamed about with minimal preparation and can dramatically change just about any smile.

Porcelain Veneers Explained

Using similar materials that are used in porcelain crowns, porcelain veneers are fingernail like thin pieces of porcelain that are bonded to your teeth in order to change the shape, color, and size of your teeth. Porcelain veneers are also sometimes referred to as “instant orthodontics” because you can even straighten your teeth. This will not work in extreme cases but can help adjust your smile in small increments.

The best part about porcelain veneers? This cosmetic dentistry treatment can be completed in as little as two dental visits and the veneers are individually fabricated and customized to fit your smile. They look completely natural when the treatment is completed. The porcelain will mimic your natural tooth in translucency as well as in reflection of light.

Porcelain Veneers Before Marielaina Perrone DDS
Porcelain Veneers – Before
Porcelain Veneers After Marielaina Perrone DDS
Porcelain Veneers – After

Characteristics Of Porcelain Veneers

Porcelain veneers have the following characteristics:

Translucent qualities — Like natural tooth enamel, porcelain veneers are translucent, meaning they allow some light to pass through and reflect off the natural dental material. This gives the veneer a natural depth, providing for a dazzling smile.

Color matching — If you are replacing multiple teeth, then all your veneers can be a natural, bright color. When covering just one or two teeth, porcelain veneers can easily be matched to the surrounding natural teeth in order to provide a consistently beautiful smile.

Non-porous surface — Porcelain veneers are ceramic glass and are non-porous, preventing future stains from ruining your new smile.

Porcelain Veneers Visits

Porcelain veneer treatment is generally completed over the course of 2-3 dental visits. They are as follows:

Visit 1 – Consultation. This is when you will explain your concerns and wishes about your smile with your dentist. Your dentist can then explain if porcelain veneers are right for your individual smile and desires. In some cases, porcelain veneers are not the right treatment and more extensive treatment may be needed like orthodontics or porcelain crowns. Porcelain veneers can also be used in conjunction with those procedures to give you the smile you have always desired.

Visit 2 – Preparation Of Teeth. At this visit, your teeth will be prepared for the porcelain veneers to be custom fabricated. A small amount of tooth structure will be removed from each tooth included in treatment. In some cases, no tooth structure is necessary (these are referred to as “no prep” veneers). Your dentist will administer a local anesthesia to keep you comfortable during the procedure. Once the preparation of teeth is completed, your dentist will take a dental impression that will be used by the dental laboratory to fabricate your custom porcelain veneers.

Visit 3 – Completion Of New Smile. Once fabrication is complete by the dental laboratory, you will return for placement of porcelain veneers. The veneers will be placed on a trial basis to ensure proper fit, color, and shape. If the new veneers meet both your criteria then the dentist will bond them to your teeth.

Porcelain Veneers Marielaina Perrone DDS
Transform Your Smile With Porcelain Veneers

Benefits Of Porcelain Veneers

Porcelain veneers are used in cosmetic dentistry to alter your front teeth in a variety of ways. These can include:

Making shorter teeth longer.

Reshaping a smile.

Changing color (porcelain veneers can can be viewed as permanent teeth whitening)

-Restoring worn teeth with weak or worn down enamel.

Close Gaps Between Teeth.

Repairing cracked, chipped, or broken teeth.

Minor Realignment Of Teeth. Porcelain veneers are also called “instant orthodontics” for this reason. They can straighten slightly out of place teeth to create a perfect smile.

Porcelain veneers are generally completed across the front 6 teeth on either the top or bottom or both. Single porcelain veneers can also be done to change individual teeth with minor flaws.

Additional Benefits Of Porcelain Veneers

Porcelain veneers can also change other parts of your face. This can include:

Lip Enhancement – The extra layer that porcelain veneers add to teeth pushes the lips just slightly outward, can lead to fuller lips that look very natural. If more attention is needed Juvederm filler can help here as well.

Strengthening sensitive teeth – Worn teeth lacking enamel will make patients feel twinges when their teeth are exposed to hot or cold. Porcelain veneers will strengthen the teeth by covering the exposed layers of the tooth leading to improved comfort.

Increased Smiling.

Porcelain Veneers Conclusion

The use of porcelain veneers in cosmetic dentistry is considered a fairly conservative treatment. This is because minimal tooth structure is removed to give you fantastic results. However, it is important to note it is not a reversible procedure. Once the tooth structure is removed it is permanent. Porcelain veneers have the ability to transform an ordinary smile into an extraordinary smile. If you are interested in porcelain veneers speak to your dentist today and see if they are right for you!

To Floss Or Not To Floss, the age old question. Flossing is necessary to maintain optimal dental health. Flossing at least once a day helps remove the sticky layer (plaque) that develops along our gum line and between teeth. This plaque when allowed to build up will eventually irritate your gum tissues and give bacteria a place to call home leading to development of periodontal disease. The best way to get rid of plaque is to brush and floss your teeth regularly every day. Brushing alone cannot completely clean teeth. Dental floss cleans between them and areas brushing cannot.

Is Flossing Necessary?

Floss removes plaque and debris that adhere to teeth and gums in between teeth, polishes tooth surfaces and helps control development of bad breath. By flossing your teeth daily (if possible floss after every meal), you increase the chances of maintaining your smile for a lifetime and decrease your chances for the development of periodontal disease and tooth decay.

Flossing is the #1 tool we have in the fight against plaque, even more important than the toothbrush. Many people just avoid flossing but in reality it only takes a minute or two once you get the hang of it. Also, many people have never been properly shown how easy it is.

So Many Options…Which Floss Is Right For Me?

The dental floss area at the local pharmacy can be a bit confusing. Floss comes in many types. They can be waxed or unwaxed, they can have flavors, and they even come in different widths.Dental floss comes in many forms: waxed and unwaxed, flavored and unflavored, wide and regular. No matter which type of floss you choose they all clean and remove plaque about the same. Waxed floss might be easier to slide between tight teeth or tight dental work. However, the unwaxed floss makes a slight squeaking sound to let you know when your teeth are clean. Bonded unwaxed floss does not fray as easily as regular unwaxed floss but does tear more than waxed floss. The best floss is the one you are using. Choose what feels most comfortable to you. The goal of flossing is to reach areas of the mouth that brushing alone is unable to.

Flossing Technique

Traditionally there are two flossing methods: the spool method and the loop method. The spool method works well for those with good manual dexterity. Take an 18-inch piece of floss and wind the bulk of the floss lightly around the middle finger. Wind the rest of the floss similarly around the same finger of the opposite hand. This finger takes up the floss as it becomes soiled or frayed. Maneuver the floss between teeth with your index fingers and thumbs. Gently work the floss between your teeth. Do not force the floss between teeth. You can irritate and damage your gum tissues this way. Don’t rub it side to side as if you’re shining shoes. Bring the floss up and down several times, forming a “C” shape around the tooth and being sure to go below the gumline. The key is to cover all areas of the tooth to ensure a full cleaning around each tooth.

The loop method is suited for children or adults with limited dexterity, poor muscular coordination or arthritis. Take an 18-inch piece of floss and make it into a circle. Tie it securely with three knots. Place all of the fingers, except the thumb, within the loop. Use your index fingers to guide the floss through the lower teeth, and use your thumbs to guide the floss through the upper teeth, going below the gumline and forming a “C” on the side of the tooth.

Flossing Frequency

You shoot aim to floss your teeth at least once a day. You are talking 2-3 minutes each time you floss. Extra points will be given if you floss after every meal. Your teeth and gums will thank you in the long run!

Can Toothpicks Replace Flossing?

No! Toothpicks when used properly can be an effective tool at removing food between teeth, but not for daily cleaning of plaque between teeth. When you using a toothpick, do not press with too much pressure, as you can break off the end and lodge it in your gums causing damage to tissues.

Flossing Marielaina Perrone DDS
Flossing For A Lifetime Of Smiles

Can A Waterpik Replace Flossing?

There really is no substitute for daily flossing. But they are highly effective around orthodontic braces. However, they do not remove the sticky plaque attached to our teeth. Waterpicks are frequently recommended by dentists for persons with periodontal disease. Solutions containing antibacterial agents like chlorhexidine or tetracycline, available through a dentist’s prescription, can be added to the reservoir in these cases helping cleanse areas to bring them back to optimal health.

My Gums Bleed When I Floss…Should I Stop?

Bleeding gums can happen on occasion when flossing. It can occur from improper flossing technique or it is occurring because of the presence of early  periodontal disease. For many, it can be inflamed gums due to gingivitis, which is reversible. Medications and illness can also cause bleeding gums.  If your gums continue bleeding after 2 weeks of proper flossing  and brushing, see your dentist immediately for a complete dental examination and dental cleaning. Your dentist and hygienist will get you back on track to good oral health.

Flossing Conclusion

Flossing is an integral part of anyone’s daily dental hygiene regimen. If you chose not to floss, your smile may pay the price in the long run. Once you get into the habit of flossing daily it will not seem like a chore and your smile will thank you for it! Remember to see you dentist regularly for dental examinations and professional cleanings.

Maintaining good dental hygiene is important for keeping a healthy smile. Keeping good habits is essential for this but keeping bad habits can ruin your hard work. Below are the top 5 bad habits destroying your smile.

Top 5 Bad Dental Habits

  1. Not Flossing Regularly. Flossing at least once a day is critical to overall dental health. In fact, it is recommended to floss after every meal if at all possible for optimal dental health. Flossing regularly removes the food particles and cavity causing bacteria that build up in and around our teeth. Some patients may notice slight bleeding upon flossing this is a sign of periodontal disease. In its earliest form, called gingivitis, this is reversible. Speak to your dentist if this bleeding upon flossing persists as this is a sign of periodontal disease. In its earliest form, called gingivitis, this is reversible. Once it progresses, there will be damage to your oral health.
  2. Not Changing Tooth Brush Regularly. It is recommended that you replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months and definitely no more than every 6 months. Your toothbrush will wear down over time and not be as effective. It will also have harmful bacteria build up over time that can wreak havoc on your dental health. Another tip is to change toothbrush after being sick (for example the flu or a common cold).
  3. Crunching and Sucking On Ice Cubes. Some people have the bad habit of chewing the ice after finishing their drink. This can be very harmful to your teeth due to the brittleness and cold temperatures of the ice cubes. This can cause microfractures in the enamel of your teeth. Over time this can lead to big problems, like fractures of teeth and tooth decay.
  4. Grinding Your Teeth. This is also called Bruxism. It is quite common and is usually brought on by stress. Many do this at night and are not even aware of the damage they are causing to their smile. Over time, the cusps of your teeth will wear down causing bite issues, fractured teeth, and tooth decay. In severe cases, it can also cause temperomandibular joint (TMJ) issues. A simple fix for this is a night guard to wear during sleep to protect your teeth and keep them healthy.
  5. Using The Wrong Tooth Brush And Technique. A hard bristled toothbrush along with an aggressive brushing technique can cause irreversible damage to your teeth and gums. It is recommended that you use a soft bristled toothbrush and gently brush your teeth in a circular motion at a 45-degree angle. Using a sawing, back and forth motion can cause the gums to recede, and can expose the root of the tooth. If the underlying material of your teeth (Dentin) is exposed it will make your teeth extremely sensitive. This can be quite painful.

Bad Dental Habits Conclusion

Maintaining good dental habits is all about routine. Once we get into a routine it is easy to keep our smiles healthy for a life time. It is important to discuss these issues with your dentist and correct them as soon as possible to avoid long term damage.

Liver cancer is a type of cancer that begins in the cells of your liver. Our liver is an organ that is about the size of a football. Your liver is located in the upper right portion of your abdomen. Your liver sits just beneath your diaphragm and above your stomach. Liver cancer is actually fairly rare with less than 200,000 cases in US each year.

Cancer that spreads to the liver is more common than cancer beginning in the liver cells. Cancer that begins in another area of the body (breast, lung or colon) and then spreads to the liver is called metastatic cancer rather than liver cancer. This type of cancer is named after the organ in which it began. For example if it begins in the colon it is referred to as metastatic colon cancer.

Signs And Symptoms Of Liver Cancer

Many people do not show any signs or symptoms in the initial stages of primary liver cancer. Signs and symptoms to be on the look out for include:

  • Loss of weight without dieting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Upper abdominal pain
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • General weakness and fatigue
  • Abdominal swelling
  • Yellow discoloration of your skin and the whites of your eyes (also called jaundice)
  • White, chalky stools
Keto Diet Menu Henderson NV Marielaina Perrone DDS
Good Dental Health Can Equal Good Overall Health

Liver Cancer Risk Factors

Factors that increase the risk of primary liver cancer include:

  • Hepatitis B or Hepatitis C Infection. Long term infection with the hepatitis B virus or hepatitis C virus has been known to increase your risk of liver cancer.
  • Cirrhosis Of The Liver. Cirrhosis is a progressive and irreversible condition causes scar tissue to form in your liver. The presence of this scarring increases your chances of developing primary liver cancer.
  • Genetics. These diseases include hemochromatosis and Wilson’s disease.
  • Diabetes. Statistically those with diabetes have a higher chance of developing liver cancer than those who are not diabetic.
  • Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. An accumulation of fat in the liver increases the risk of liver cancer.
  • Exposure to aflatoxins. Aflatoxins are poisons produced by molds that grow on crops that are stored poorly. Crops, such as grains and nuts, can become contaminated with aflatoxins, which can end up in foods made of these products.
  • Excessive alcohol consumption. Over consumption of alcohol over many years can lead to irreversible liver damage and increase your risk of liver cancer.

Dental Health Link To Liver Cancer

A recent scientific study completed at Queen’s University in Belfast found a substantial link between poor oral health and liver cancers. The study included 469,628 people and investigated an oral health link with liver, colon, rectum, and pancreatic cancer. There were no significant links for colon, rectum , and pancreatic cancer but there was a link with liver cancer.

Of the 469,628 participants, 4,069 developed gastrointestinal cancer during the 6 year follow up. In 13% of these cases, patients were in poor oral health. Participants with poor oral health were more likely to be younger, female, living in deprived socioeconomic areas and consumed less than two portions of fruit and vegetables per day.

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Eat A Healthy Diet Including Fruits And Vegetables

The biological mechanisms by which poor oral health may be more strongly associated with liver cancer, rather than other digestive cancers, was not determined by this study. Researchers believe one possible explanation may be the potential role of the oral and gut microbiome in development of disease. One of the functions of the liver is to help with the elimination of bacteria from the human body. When the liver is damaged by diseases (this can include hepatitis, cirrhosis or cancer), liver function will decline and bacteria will survive for longer and therefore have the potential to cause more harm. One such bacteria, Fusobacterium nucleatum, originates in the oral cavity but its role in liver cancer is unclear. It is obvious further studies will be needed but this leads scientists down a path to possibly deciphering this type of cancer development.

Another theory in explaining the higher cancer risk due to poor oral health suggests that participants with poor oral health (including missing teeth) may change their diet, consuming softer and potentially less nutritious foods, which in turn influence the risk of liver cancer.

Liver Cancer And Oral Health Conclusion

The overall survival rate for liver cancer is about 18%. There are many factors that go into the survival rate but that number is quite sobering. Dental health has been linked to other systemic diseases (alzheimer’s disease and heart disease) recently as well. Evidence is mounting that dental health is vital to maintaining good overall health. See your dentist regularly for dental examinations and professional cleanings to stay healthy for a lifetime of smiles!