Family & Cosmetic Care in a Comfortable, Relaxed Environment.

Serving Las Vegas and Henderson, Nevada since 1999.

A Smile is the universal language we all share.  Having a smile you are happy with allows you to exude self confidence and self esteem. This makes you feel more attractive to others and appear more successful. According to recent surveys, about 1/3rd of all Americans are unhappy with their smile. Luckily, for most of us this situation is easily correctable with some simple and some more involved cosmetic dentistry procedures.

Easy Cosmetic Dentistry Fixes For That Perfect Smile

For many of us, the imperfections that bother us can be quite small and easily correctable with cosmetic dentistry. These simple cosmetic dentistry procedures can include:

-Teeth Whitening. This is the most popular cosmetic dentistry procedure in the U.S. and the world. It can dramatically alter ones smile and also ones perception of themselves. Teeth whitening can be achieved in a variety of ways with varying results. One of the most popular ways to whiten is, the use of teeth whitening strips. These strips can give your smile a brighter look for very little cost but they do not work for everyone, and may not get your teeth as white as you’d hoped.  The dentist can offer an at home teeth whitening kit or a one hour procedure in office. Professional whitening is very effective but comes at a higher financial cost. Professional whitening procedures can whiten your smile by as much as 4-6 shades in as little as an hour.

-Dental Bonding. While a bit more extensive than teeth whitening. Dental bonding can usually be completed in under an hour and give a dramatic effect if one or more teeth are affected by tooth decay or fractures. A good cosmetic dentist will be able to make the dental bonding appear natural and no one should be able to tell you have any dental bonding present. This has been a staple of cosmetic dentistry for many years.

-Tooth and Gum Recontouring. Many people are unhappy with one or two teeth which may be out of alignment. The dentist can recontour one or more teeth to give them the look of being more in line with one another. Uneven gums can also make teeth appear to be longer or shorter.  You would be amazed at how simple it is to reshape and contour teeth and gums to give a beautiful appearance. Recontouring is often overlooked by patients and by many general dentists. A good cosmetic dentist will look at the teeth and face as one big picture allowing them to make adjustments in the big scope of things.

-Snap-On Smile. This is a fairly recent advancement in cosmetic dentistry. It allows for a prosthetic to be fabricated that fits over the existing teeth. This procedure requires little to no tooth preparation and can be a cost effective option. This procedure is far less expensive than permanent changes to teeth, and can be completed in just a short time. Snap on Smile patients are happy to leave with  the smile they wanted at reduced cost and chair time.

More Complex Cosmetic Dentistry Fixes For An Imperfect Smile

-Porcelain Veneers. When you see an “A” list celebrity in magazines or in movies, chances are they have had porcelain veneers placed on their front teeth.Porcelain veneers are wafer thin custom fabricated shells made of modern dental porcelain that are adhered to the outer surface of your natural teeth.  Porcelain veneers are also referred to as “instant orthodontics”. This is because the cosmetic dentist is able to change the shape, width, length, and alignment of your teeth. In extreme cases of misalignment, your cosmetic dentist may recommend a porcelain crown or orthodontics prior to doing porcelain veneers.  When completed properly, no one but you and your dentist should know that you have porcelain veneers.

-Orthodontics. This is not just for kids any more. Adults are often turning to orthodontics to get the smile they dream of. Having straight teeth helps in chewing function, decreases wear and fracture, and has the benefit of being cosmetic. Straight teeth are beneficial for optimum hygiene,  it allows you to be able to clean your teeth more effectively since you will not trap as much food particles when they are properly spaced.

-Dental Implants. Many do not consider dental implants to be a part of cosmetic dentistry but they play a very big role in modern dentistry. Replacing a lost tooth will not only improve function but will also return your smile to its original form. A lost tooth, to many, is a sign of old age, poor hygiene, and low dental priority. Having a full complement of teeth can give someone a youthful, healthy looking appearance.

-Periodontal Plastic Surgery. Many of us have a smile that shows too much gums or might have some areas with receding gums. This can be corrected with surgical addition of or removal of  gingival tissues to the areas of concern.

Cosmetic Dentistry Conclusion

It is so important to feel good about smiling. There are so many options to help with most of your dental concerns. Cosmetic dentistry has come a long way over the last 10-15 years, making the procedures more affordable to many. Choosing a good cosmetic dentist along with the use of high quality modern dental materials you can assure yourself of getting the smile you have always dreamed of. A good cosmetic dentist will be able to advise you of what cosmetic dentistry procedures would be best for you to fulfill your wants and desires.  You can achieve your perfect smile, and confidently show it off to the world!

Summer is just around the corner which means school is out and traveling for many families. It is easy to overlook dental hygiene when on the road and forget to pack the essentials to maintain healthy teeth and gums. Below you will find some essentials to pack to ensure you keep up your dental hygiene while having fun on the road.

Dental Hygiene Essentials To Pack

-New Toothbrush. Start fresh and bring a new toothbrush on your trip. Then simply throw it out at the end of the vacation.

-Toothbrush Holder. This is a simple and cheap way to maintain a sanitary environment for your toothbrush.

-Travel Sized Mouthwash and Toothpaste. Not only will these follow the newer TSA regulations for air travel, they will make it easier to pack as well.

-Sugar Free Gum (preferably one with Xylitol). Being on the road it is not always easy to brush after meals or snacks. Keeping gum with you will allow you to freshen your breath and keep your mouth as clean as possible.

-Pain Medication. This can include Motrin or Aleve. Nice to have in case of a dental emergency while on vacation.

-Wax. Another good item to have in case of a dental emergency. If you accidentally chip a tooth, the wax can be used to cover the jagged edge of the tooth.

-Floss. Do not forget to floss at least once per day.

-Package of Colgate Wisps. This handy dental hygiene tool acts as toothbrush as well as a toothpick. These can help remove foreign objects lodged between your teeth.

-Plastic sandwich or freezer bag. Ever open your suitcase to find a tube of toothpaste or mouthwas exploded all over your clothes? It’s not a pleasant surprise. This can be prevented by putting your dental hygiene products in a sealed plastic bag.

-Electric Toothbrush/Charger. If you use an electric toothbrush make sure to pack the entire kit including the charger so you do not run out of juice while traveling.

-Waterpik Flosser Travel Size. The waterpik is an excellent adjunct to any dental hygiene program. If this is a product you use at home, then you would not want to leave without it.

Dental Hygiene Tips While Traveling

-Do not forget to brush after every meal. If you are unable to brush immediately, rinse with water after every meal.

-Limit snacking.

-Carry sugar free gum with xylitol to chew if you are unable to brush.

-Always brush and floss before bed.

Dental Hygiene Conclusion

Maintaining dental hygiene on the road can be quite challenging. Carrying your routine on the road is essential to stave off any dental issues down the road.

Autism -  a developmental disability that significantly affects communication (both verbal and non verbal) and social interaction, generally evident before age three, that adversely affects educational performance. Other characteristics often associated with autistic people are, engagement in repetitive activities and stereotyped movements, resistance to environmental change or change in daily routines, and unusual responses to sensory experiences.

-1 percent of the population of children in the U.S. ages 3-17 have an autism spectrum disorder.

-Prevalence is estimated at 1 in 88 births.

-1 to 1.5 million Americans live with an autism spectrum disorder.

Autistic patients, as well as patients with similar behavioral and possibly intellectual challenges,  present a unique challenge for dentists as well as parents. Most dental procedures  involve the use of bright lights, loud noises, and touching of a very sensitive part of the body.  Most people in general are uneasy, and apprehensive about dental treatment, imagine what it is like for an autistic child or adult.

Hypersensitivity to one’s environment is usually a hallmark trait for most autistic patients. This makes dental care even more challenging, as they may react adversely to the sensory overload. Autistic patients do not like change in their daily schedules, new noises, new people, or new activities. In the past, these challenges would lead to most dentists turning away such patients, but in modern dentistry this is no longer the case.  There are many dentists who have training to help them with the special challenges that come with autism.

Dental Issues For Autistic Patients

-Poor Dental Hygiene. While this is not isolated just to Autistic patients, the autistic population has an increased risk of poor maintenance.

-Increased Tooth Decay. Poor dental hygiene and tooth decay go hand in hand but for these patients there is increased risk due to many parents and caregivers use of candy as a reward for good behavior, and a common habit of pocketing of food in the cheek. The increased exposure to sugars, and leaving carbohydrates in direct contact with the tooth surface over prolonged periods an will lead to increase in tooth decay.

-Teeth Grinding or Bruxism. While many people suffer from this, we have seen a higher rate of autistic patients vs the general population exhibiting this behavior.

-Self Injury. Many autistic patients will bite or pick at their gums creating an issue dentally. A mouth guard might be recommended as long as the autistic patient can tolerate it.

-Medication related issues. Many autistic patients suffer from seizures and therefore take medication for it. These medicationscan lead to decreased saliva production which can lead to dry mouth and subsequent bad breath and tooth decay.

Techniques for Handling Autistic Patients in Dental Chair

1) Set up a Pre-Appointment Tour and Introduction. Parents should talk to the dentist ahead of time to let him/her know a bit about the child, including what helps to soothe and what is an easy set off for behaviors. Let the patient come to the office to tour the facilities and get a feel for the surroundings and the people there. Let them see the trays as well as touch everything that is safe for them to touch. This should include the x ray machine so they are familiar with it when they arrive for the actual appointment. Meeting the entire staff is very important as well.

2) Keep Initial Visit as short as possible. Make the first visit quick and as noninvasive as possible.

3) Always keep Communicating. The dentist and Hygienist needs to explain what is going to happen to the child directly, what instruments are going to be used, what it might feel like, and about how long it is going to take to finish. The child should feel free to ask questions, and be taught hand signals to let the dentist know if they need a break, or if they cannot tolerate any more.

4) Have Parents in Room if Needed. This one becomes a personal choice between parent or caregiver and dentist. Some patients do well with them in room and some do not. It is totally a case by case decision. Never be afraid of insisting that you be present during the dental appointment –  your child may require you to be there anyway. Make sure the dental staff is comfortable with this.

5) Possible use of General Anesthesia, Sedatives, restraints. More involved dental procedures like tooth extractions, dental fillings and even radiographs can be done under sedation or general anesthesia if the patient’s behavior is likely to create difficulty for the dentist or patient in providing safe dental care. Restraints sound scary to most, but autistic children, especially those with Aspergers are calmed by a tight pediwrap. Aspergers children often squeeze themselves in a hug or wear tight clothing to self soothe in an intense situation.

Conclusion For Autistic Patients Dental Care

Autistic patients are presented with challenges everyday of their lives so it is up to those around them to come up with solutions to make it as seamless as possible for them. The challenge is there, but it can be overcome with patience between dentist, patient, and parent/caregiver. With proper planning, dental care is possible to maintain autistic patients teeth and gums for a lifetime.

Every dental office gets calls asking for an appointment. The caller says it is “just” for a cleaning. While a professional cleaning is vital there is more that goes on at that visit than just the cleaning. Do you know the steps involved for a routine visit and why your dentist or hygienist performs them? Read below to find out…

The 6 Month Visit

-Review Medical History. Study after study has shown that there is a direct connection between our oral health and our general health. Regularly updating your medical history will keep us up to date to any changes that may be occuring for you. This allows the dental team to make the necessary adjustments to your treatment. Some of these changes could include changes in medications, recent surgeries, or even changes in your vitamin regimen. What may seem trivial to you could have definite implications to your dental treatment.

-Radiographs. Not ever dental hygiene visit will include dental x-rays. For most they are recommended to be taken once a year. Dental x-rays give the dentist and hygienist and window into the your dental health. Tooth decay, periodontal disease, and tumors can be detected using x-rays.

-Dental Hygiene Examination. This includes examining your glands, periodontal tissues, lips, and tongue to ensure everything looks as it should. Routinely, your hygienist will perform a periodontal screening which includes checking around each individual tooth for the presence of bone loss. When bone loss is present they are called periodontal pockets. Periodontal pockets become dangerous because it becomes much harder to be cleaned properly through at home methods. Deeper pockets may require different treatment to bring it under control.

-Teeth Scaling And Polish. This should include using both ultrasonic instruments as well as hand instruments. The ultrasonic instruments are used to debride and remove debris above the gum line. While hand instruments are used to attack areas below the gum line to ensure all the plaque and tartar are effectively removed. Stains can also be removed using these instruments. And finally, your hygienist will polish your teeth to make them smooth and shiny.

-Dental Examination. During this examination your dentist will discuss with the hygienist anything that they may have found during their examination. This is important because the dentist can then pay particular attention to certain areas to ensure the proper treatment plan is developed. A thorough examination will be completed including an oral cancer screening using a Velscope, and a thorough check of your teeth along with a review of any x-rays. Following the examination, your dentist will discuss with you if any treatment is needed.

-Patient Education. An educated patient makes the best choices for his/her dental care. Therefore this part is just as important as any other part. Your dentist or hygienist might use visual aids, like a disclosing solution, to show areas that you may need work to on at home. Demonstrations of proper flossing and brushing technique may also be shown at this time.

Conclusion

Making time for the dentist is critical to your dental and overall health. There are lots of moving parts to your dental care including in office and at home care. A good dental team can lead you down a path to good dental health for life.