Professional Teeth Whitening

Teeth whitening is the most popular cosmetic procedure that dentists perform today. It can have a dramatic effect on your smile at a smaller cost than other cosmetic procedures. You can whiten your teeth yourself using at-home techniques, but often professional whitening with your dentist’s help achieves the fastest and most effective results. Let’s examine the whitening options provided by most dentists to help you evaluate what might work for you.

Whitening at your dentist’s office:
The dentist applies a whitening product to your teeth containing higher percentages of hydrogen peroxide than what is available in at-home kits. Heat or light may be used also. This technique produces quick, uniform results, but it does sometimes cause temporary gum irritation or tooth sensitivity. This method is expensive, ranging between $500 to $1,200.

Home whitening supervised by your dentist:
A customized mouthpiece will be created by your dentist for you to fill at home with whitening gel, which contains a lower strength of hydrogen peroxide then the in-office gel. You wear the mouthpiece at home for several hours each day, and your dentist supervises the whitening with regular checkups. This method is convenient and less expensive at $300 to $500, but it produces slower results than in-office methods.

Repeating the process:
Whichever type of teeth whitening technique you might choose, remember that it isn’t a permanent repair to your teeth. You will need to repeat the process every year or two. The length of time between treatments will increase if you don’t smoke and avoid foods that are known to stain your teeth, such as coffee and red wine.


Our dental office is located in Louisville

Cerec dentist in Louisville

Features of CEREC Technology for Crowns

Dental crowns have been revolutionized by the onset of CEREC technology. This unique method of developing crowns is taking dentistry by storm. Not all dentists have the training and equipment to perform CEREC crowns, but those that do are able to provide their patients with the latest and greatest type of dental restoration.

One of the best features of CEREC is that it only requires one visit to the dentist from start to finish. This is due to the fact that there is no dental impression that must be sent to a laboratory to create the restoration. The dentist is able to use special computer software right there in the office to develop a 3D image of your tooth that will be used to create the crown.

Another outstanding feature is that a CEREC crown is made of pure porcelain. This material is hard like your real tooth enamel, able to withstand heat and pressure. CEREC crowns are strong and long-lasting, making them a great solution for a dental restoration.

CEREC technology is used to create more than just crowns. Dentists also make veneers, inlays and onlays using CEREC. In order to develop your restoration, these are the steps your dentist will perform:

  • Take a digital image of your tooth with a special camera
  • Create a digital crown based on the image
  • Transfer the design to the milling machine
  • Allow the milling unit to make the crown out of a block of porcelain, which take about 15 minutes
  • Remove the crown from the milling machine and attach it to your tooth with dental cement
  • Perform finishing touches to fit the crown perfectly and give it a natural appearance

When your dentist uses CEREC, there are no more excuses that you don’t have time to get your restoration. If this type of technology interests you, look for a dentist who offers CEREC and get your smile back in just one day.

If you live in the Louisville area contact us today

Can Germs Live on my Toothbrush

Can Germs Live on my Toothbrush?

Chances are you would be disgusted at the thought of leaving your eating utensils on your bathroom counter exposed to germs, and never washing them but continuing to eat with them. This is essentially what you’re doing if you leave your toothbrush sitting out, and never sanitize or change it. Let’s talk about how to keep your toothbrush from being a germ-infested threat to your health.

Your toothbrush can be contaminated by bacteria, saliva, blood, and food particles with each use. Even after you rinse it with water, your toothbrush may appear clean but germs linger on the bristles. Some of the sources of bacteria on your toothbrush include:

  • Your mouth, which transfers germs to your toothbrush during use.
  • The environment, because bathrooms are often the most contaminated room in your house.
  • The packaging, since toothbrushes aren’t sold in sterile packages they can arrive with germs already on them.

Here are some tips to guard your toothbrush from germs:

  • Before and after you brush your teeth, wash your hands to get rid of germs.
  • Rinse your toothbrush well with water, and then allow it to air dry.
  • Store the toothbrush upright so that water can drain from it while drying.
  • Consider storing your toothbrush in a dry area outside of the bathroom, away from humidity and toilet spray
  • Replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months, or more often if you notice worn bristles.
  • Do not share your toothbrush with anyone.
  • Do not soak your toothbrush in disinfectant or mouthwash, which can lead to cross contamination
  • Do not bother microwaving your toothbrush or running it in the dishwasher, because these tactics may damage your brush.

We treat patients from Louisville and the surrounding area

Are You a Good Candidate for Dentures?

If you have lost all of your teeth or just a few, you are probably a good candidate for dentures. Dentures, also known as removable prosthodontics, are used for the dental restoration or replacement of missing or broken teeth. You may want to consider dentures if any of the following apply to your situation:

  • You have very few remaining teeth and they are in poor condition.
  • You have suffered bone loss in your mouth so severe it precludes you from considering dental implants.
  • You have advanced gum disease that has resulted in the loss of multiple teeth.
  • You have lost many teeth, and your remaining teeth are suffering from decay and receding gums.
  • You are committed to practicing excellent oral hygiene in order to take good care of your dentures.

You may not be a good candidate for dentures if any of the following apply:

  • You are a young patient whose jawbone has not fully developed.
  • You grind or clench your teeth.
  • You have a sensitive gag reflex.
  • You are a smoker.

If you feel you are a good candidate for dentures, your dentist will evaluate the health of your teeth and gums and determine if full or partial dentures are the best choice for you. There are many factors to consider when having dentures placed, and your dental professional can help you make a decision that fits your needs and lifestyle. If you wish to regain oral functionality and improve your smile, dentures may be your answer to once again enjoying a full set of beautiful, natural looking teeth.

Our dental office is located in Louisville

Maintaining Your Dentures

Getting back your ability to smile and eat with a complete set of teeth is one of the great benefits of dentures. To prevent infections, sores, or further tooth damage, it is important to maintain dentures properly. Here are some ways that dentists advise to keep your dentures in great condition.

Cleaning

Rinse your dentures well after meals to remove food particles and avoid stains. Brush them daily with a soft toothbrush to remove plaque and deposits. Use a mild soap or product that your dentist recommends, but avoid harsh toothpaste or strong cleaners.

Soaking

Soak your dentures in water or cleaning solution when you are not wearing them, especially overnight. This helps keeps them from drying out or becoming misshapen. Do not use hot water.

Rinsing

If you use a cleaning solution, rinse your dentures well before putting them back in your mouth. Avoid swallowing denture cleaning solution because it can cause stomach upset.

Handling

Handle your dentures very carefully so that you don’t drop them or bend them. Clean them over a basin filled with water, so that if they fall they shouldn’t be damaged.

Visiting your dentist

Maintain regular checkups with your dentist to get both your mouth and your dentures examined. Most dentists recommend visits every six month for ideal results. See your dentist sooner if your dentures are not fitting well, are causing irritation, or have become loose.

Our dental office is located in Louisville

Cerec dentist in Louisville

CEREC: The Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

Questions

Ceramic Reconstruction, or CEREC, provides an alternative to the traditional process for restoring a tooth. Instead of making a physical impression of the tooth, it uses a 3D camera and special computer software to develop a sophisticated image of the tooth. Then a milling machine in the dentist’s office is used to create the restoration. Since CEREC is new to many patients, you may benefit from these answers to frequently asked questions.

Is CEREC better for my oral health?

CEREC restorations allow you to keep more of your real tooth, because usually only the damaged areas of your tooth must be altered. The material is similar to tooth enamel, making it hard and abrasive like a natural tooth. CEREC material is less stressful on your teeth when you consume hot or cold items, because it expands and contracts like a real tooth. It also looks real because it comes in colors you can choose that match your other teeth. With traditional restorations, temporary placements are often required. These are not ideal for your natural tooth because temporary restorations do not support the tooth as well, increasing the risk for your tooth to break. Finally, CEREC restorations have shown to last a long time with proper care.

Is it simpler for me?

CEREC restorations are completed in just one dental visit. There are no temporary restorations, no uncomfortable material in your mouth to create impressions, only one injection, and a single appointment.

What does the restoration look like?

CEREC restorations look like a natural tooth. The tooth-colored ceramic blends right in with your other teeth.

Is CEREC safe?

CEREC has a record of safety and reliability, and the restorations are accepted by dental experts as high quality solutions to dental problems.

How do I know if CEREC is right for me?

CEREC is often a good choice for patients who want to keep as much of their natural tooth as possible, want only one trip to the dentist, want a realistic looking tooth, and want a long-lasting restoration. Your dentist can help you decide if CEREC meets your specific dental needs.

If you need a dentist in Louisville contact us today

Dental team

The Roles of Dental Hygienists and Dental Assistant

When you visit the dentist, you often see other professionals in the office. Usually, the dentist will have a hygienist and a dental assistant as part of the team. While their roles aren’t the same as the dentist’s job, these individuals do play an important part in your dental care. Understanding what the hygienist and dental assistant do can make you feel more comfortable at your dental appointments.

The Dental Assistant
To become a dental assistant, an individual usually completes course work through a community college or technical school. This training will provide hands-on experience before the dental assistant works in an actual dental practice. A dental assistant can serve many functions, including assisting the dentist during treatment, taking impressions, sterilizing instruments, and making temporary crowns for patients. Dental assistants also welcome patients and help them feel comfortable in the dental office.

The Dental Hygienist
At a minimum, a dental hygienist must earn an associate’s degree, though many hygienists choose to obtain four-year degrees. Additionally, hygienists must be licensed in the states where they practice. The dental hygienist is generally responsible for taking patient x-rays, performing an initial periodontal assessment, and cleaning your teeth. During your appointment, the hygienist will also offer tips on home hygiene to help you maximize your oral car routine. A dental hygienist may also perform deep cleanings for gum disease, apply fluoride, remove sutures, and administer local anesthetic.

Tartar is the Enemy

Tartar is the Enemy

It’s hard to miss with advertisements and visits to the dentist that tartar is something you want to avoid for good oral health. But do you know what this substance is, how to keep from getting it, and what to do if tartar does develop?

What’s so bad about tartar?

Even if you brush and floss regularly, it’s impossible to get rid of all of the bacteria in your mouth. Bacteria and food residue combine to form plaque on your teeth. If left to thrive, plaque attacks your teeth and gums. It causes decay, gum inflammation, and will harden into tartar if not removed before it has the chance.

What does it do to my teeth and gums?

Tartar buildup makes it more difficult to brush and floss well, and tartar along your gums may lead to gum disease. Mild gum disease, or gingivitis, is often caused by plaque and tartar on your teeth. It can usually be reversed with careful dental hygiene. If left untreated, it will progress into periodontitis. This more serious gum disease can damage the bones and tissue that support your teeth, increasing your risk of tooth loss. It may also cause infections that contribute to heart disease and other health problems.

How can I control tartar?

Here are some ways to prevent tartar formation:

  • Brush at least twice daily long enough to thoroughly clean every tooth and all of your gums. Consider using an electric toothbrush, which may be more effective for plaque removal.
  • Use tartar-control fluoride toothpaste. It is formulated to help prevent tartar formation, and the fluoride can repair damage to your teeth that may have already begun.
  • Floss every day to reach the areas that brushing cannot.
  • Eat a healthy diet low in sugars and starches, and limit snacks between meals. Drink plenty of water to help rinse away plaque and bacteria.
  • Don’t smoke because tobacco use has been shown to increase tartar buildup.

How do I get rid of it?

A professional cleaning is the only way to successfully remove tartar. See your dentist every six months for checkups and cleanings.

Schedule your appointment at our Louisville dental office

Invislaign Louisville

Invisalign: A Hidden Way to Improve Your Smile

Modern technology is constantly making strides in improving dentistry, and the area of teeth straightening is no exception. In order to get your dream smile, you don’t have to be stuck with a mouth full of unsightly and uncomfortable metal braces any longer. Transforming your smile is now possible with a hidden product called Invisalign.

Also referred to as invisible braces, Invisalign utilizes clear plastic aligner trays to move your teeth into better positions. The series of customized trays are fitted for your mouth to gently move your teeth over time. Because they are created specifically for you, they are more comfortable than you might think and achieve their goal with minimal soreness. This is a great benefit over the painful and irritating process of traditional braces.

Wearing the clear aligners gradually shifts your teeth, and every few weeks your dental professional provides a new set of aligners to continue moving your teeth toward the final goal. This process is repeated until your teeth have moved into their desired positions, giving you a straight and attractive new smile. The aligners should be worn about 22 hours a day for best results.

Patients of all ages may be candidates for Invisalign. This technology is appealing to adults because it avoids the embarrassment of noticeable braces during professional and social encounters, and with teens who want to avoid the ridicule of a metal smile during an often emotional time of life. There is even a special version of Invisalign made for teens, which has a blue-dot display to remind the young adults about consistent wear and when it’s time to switch trays.

One of the other major benefits of Invisalign is that the trays are removable, making eating and hygiene easy. There are no diet restrictions like with traditional braces, and the cleaning hassles of metal brackets and wires does not exist.

If you are wanting to improve your smile with orthodontics, consider the revolutionary solution of Invisalign. It can keep you smiling throughout the entire process.

We look forward to seeing you in our Louisville dental office

General Tips for Healthy Teeth

General Tips for Healthy Teeth

Keeping your teeth and gums in good condition can mean the difference between being embarrassed to smile and being happy to display your pearly whites. Your smile is one of the first things people notice, so here are some things to add to your dental care routine so that your teeth are sparkling and healthy.

Brush after consuming staining items:
Avoid foods and drinks that are known to stain your teeth, such as coffee, red wine, colored gravies, and dark colas. Brush your teeth as soon as possible after consuming such items. If brushing isn’t possible, try eating an apple to help clean away staining residue.

Change your toothbrush:
Old bristles that are out of shape and worn harbor bacteria and don’t as good of a job as newer brushes. Change your toothbrush every three months, or when it starts to look worn. Remember to choose a brush with soft bristles for the best treatment of your teeth and gums.

Floss regularly:
Use dental floss at least once every day to clean between your teeth and along your gums. Carry floss with you so that you can quickly use it in private moments after a meal or bothersome snacks.

Use mouthwash:
Add mouthwash to your daily routine to help kill bacteria that your toothbrush doesn’t reach. It also can help improve your breath.

See your dentist:
No matter how well you care for your mouth, see your dentist every six months for checkups and professional cleanings. This will not only keep your teeth bright, it will catch any problems early in hopes of avoiding more extensive dental work in the future.

We treat patients from Louisville and the surrounding area

You Can Look Younger With Cosmetic Dentistry

Special occasions like class reunions and weddings where photos are going to be taken are important. You will want to look your best, especially when you look back on the photos in years to come. When you look in your mirror, are you noticing that your smile seems less than its best? Could your look use some refreshing?

As time passes, our smiles age. Whether you realize it or not, your teeth are discoloring a little bit every day. Discoloration can come from the food we consume, such as blueberries, beets, blackberries, balsamic vinegar or soy sauce. Drinking tea, red wine, coffee or dark soda can also affect the brightness of your smile. Smoking leaves teeth looking yellow and dingy.

As well as discoloring, our teeth slowly wear away. The outer, whiter layer of enamel will thin with age, revealing the yellower layer of dentin underneath. The length of a tooth is also reduced with age as teeth wear away with natural, everyday use. Short, discolored teeth send a signal of old age whether we intend them to or not.

Composite bonding, porcelain or composite resin veneers and dental crowns can help you achieve a brighter, whiter, more even smile. Veneers can even correct gaps and hide chipped or malformed teeth. Dental implants can be an excellent solution to a missing tooth. A smile that is badly misaligned might require braces or some other kind of orthodontia to achieve optimal results.

Your cosmetic dentist can work with you to determine what steps should be taken to address your particular smile concerns and rejuvenate your smile, making you look younger and more refreshed. You will begin to see the positive responses from people who will be able to see you at your youthful best, allowing you to be your most confident, most comfortable self. The changes you make now can change your smile for years to come.

If you need a dentist in Louisville contact us today

dentures

Dentures: Frequently Asked Questions

Dentures have improved dramatically over the past several years. Whether it’s your first set of dentures or your fifth set, you probably have questions. Below are some commonly asked questions and answers about dentures:

  • Will dentures change how I look? Today’s dentures are personalized to your mouth, making their appearance more natural than ever. Dentures also support your cheeks and lips, making you look years younger.
  • Will dentures change how I feel? After a period of adjustment, dentures should make you feel more confident than ever.
  • Will dentures alter my speech? While speaking may be difficult initially, with practice, your speech should quickly return to normal. Practicing reading and counting out loud will help to speed up the adjustment.
  • Will dentures affect how I eat? Eating may take some practice, and you should start with a soft food diet while you adjust to the differences between eating with your natural teeth and dentures. Take small bites and try to chew on both sides of your mouth at the same time. Avoid hard, crunchy or chewy foods that can damage your dentures.
  • How do I care for my dentures? Clean dentures daily, brushing immediately after every meal if possible. Use a soft brush and gentle cleanser, taking care to avoid hard abrasives. Be careful when they are out of your mouth not to drop them or clean them on hard surfaces.
  • Once I have dentures, will I still need to see the dentist? Regular dental examinations and professional denture cleanings are vital to maintaining your oral health. Have your dentist periodically check the fit of your dentures to ensure they are comfortable and last for as long as possible.
  • When will I need to replace my dentures? With care, dentures typically last 5-10 years. Because your mouth continues to change shape as you age and denture teeth wear down, you should have them checked yearly to avoid any significant problems.

Consult with your dental professional about any additional questions or concerns you may have about your future with dentures and your potential for a bright, new smile.

If you live in the Louisville area contact us today

Invislaign Louisville

Who Is a Candidate for Invisalign?

Having a smile that embarrasses you is not a good way to go through life. With so many options available for improving the way your teeth look, there’s no reason to continue trying to hide them. One of the best options available today is Invisalign, or invisible braces. This innovative technology may be able to help you transform your smile without the hassles of traditional orthodontics.

Invisalign consists of a series of clear plastic aligning trays that gently shift your teeth into better positions. Practically invisible when worn, these aligners are removable for eating and cleaning. No dealing with a mouthful of unsightly metal, avoiding restricted foods, or worrying about food becoming stuck in your braces.

What types of problems can Invisalign correct? Some common flaws include gaps between teeth, crowded teeth, overlapping teeth, mild malocclusions, or twisted teeth. Issues like these not only impact the appearance of your smile, but can also cause oral health complications such as difficulty in cleaning or improper wearing on your teeth.

Who should consider Invisalign? Anyone with teeth problems like those above is likely a good candidate, especially those who want to make the best impressions on others in their professional and personal lives. If you want to repair your smile without wearing traditional braces and have the choice of removing your orthodontics for special occasions, then you’ll find Invisalign very appealing. This applies to patients of many ages, from adults in the working world to self-conscious teens. Invisalign is a great solution for those who play sports or play musical instruments that might be hindered by traditional braces.

If you are unhappy with your smile, schedule a consultation with a professional who offers Invisalign as a treatment option. Find out if this treatment can help you, and begin your journey to a brand new beautiful smile.

If you live in the Louisville area contact us today

Dental Veneers and Discolored Teeth

There are a number of reasons people choose to get dental veneers, which are able to hide all kinds of tooth problems. These thin porcelain shells are bonded to the front surfaces of your teeth and can transform an embarrassing smile into one to fill you with pride. One of the most common reasons that many patients opt for veneers is to hide discolored teeth.

No matter what the cause for it, teeth can lose their bright white shine over time. It can be from consuming foods and drinks that tend to stain teeth, such as red wine, coffee, berries, sodas, and other culprits. Or it can be side effects from medications, including the antibiotic tetracycline which can cause severe tooth discoloration if taken during a child’s formative years. Poor oral hygiene can also contribute to yellowed teeth, as well as tobacco use. Aging in general tends to discolor teeth too.

If your teeth show the effects of staining or yellowing, and you’d like to get that healthy youthful glow back, porcelain veneers are a good option. They provide a unique advantage of never staining, so they look like new the entire time you have them. With proper care, your veneers should last for decades or even a lifetime. That means a bright, white smile that won’t deteriorate!

Another great benefit about veneers is that they provide an instant improvement to your smile. As soon as they are placed, your smile will be transformed. If you have concerns about what they will look like, many dentists are able to use computerized photo imaging technology to give you an accurate idea of what to expect. This may alleviate any hesitations about veneers being the right solution to hide your discolored teeth. Ask your dentist today about the possibility of getting veneers to improve your smile.

Schedule your appointment at our Louisville dental office

Understanding Sedation Dentistry

Any type of phobia can be a difficult and often frightening condition, but fear of the dentist can be one of the worst because it can ultimately even be deadly. Proper dental care is vital to a healthy mouth and body. People who neglect going to the dentist for treatment are putting their health at risk, but sedation dentistry offers them a way to get the care they need to maintain better health.

Dental sedation involves administering certain types of drugs, from mild to stronger medications, to help a patient relax. The effects of the drugs decrease anxiety and awareness of the specifics related to treatment, so that procedures can be performed without upsetting the patient. Pain is also diminished so that the patient is comfortable during the dental visit.

Sedation methods vary according to the patient and the treatment. The medication may be given as pills that are swallowed orally, nitrous oxide gas that is inhaled through a mask, or medication given intravenously directly into the vein. Often, local anesthetics might still be required but the patient is already under the effects of sedation and does not feel the injection.

There are a number of benefits provided be sedation dentistry. Patients who otherwise might avoid checkups are able to get preventative care and procedures done without anxiety. They usually don’t remember what happened during treatment, so they come away without negative memories. Patients are also able to sit still during treatment, and for longer periods of time so that multiple procedures may be performed if needed. Lengthy or complex procedures are made possible by using sedation that allows patients to cooperate and not realize how long they are in the dental chair.

Sedation dentistry is a way for patients to obtain necessary dental care without the anxiety or fear that sometimes accompanies it. This can make all the difference in improving some people’s oral and general health.


Our dental office is located in Louisville

Oral Conscious Sedation: Frequently Asked Questions

Fear and anxiety make dental treatment a challenge for many people. Sedation dentistry offers many options to help patients overcome their fears and experience a more comfortable, relaxing treatment. One of the most common options in sedation dentistry is oral conscious sedation. Here are some common questions about oral conscious sedation and answers about how it can help alleviate your stress about undergoing dental procedures:

  • What is oral conscious sedation? This type of sedation utilizes a combination of pain relievers and sedatives to induce an altered state of consciousness that allows you to undergo all kinds of dental treatment in a totally relaxed and comfortable state.
  • Am I asleep during the procedure? Patients who receive oral conscious sedation are drowsy but awake and able to communicate with their dental professional. This type of dental sedation allows you to be relaxed but aware.
  • Will I feel pain during the dental treatment? With oral conscious sedation, you will most likely not feel any discomfort or pain.
  • Is oral conscious sedation safe? While it is considered safe for most patients, your dentist will evaluate your medical and dental health to determine if you are a good candidate for oral sedation.
  • Can I resume normal activity immediately after receiving oral sedation? Because you may still be slightly drowsy and under the effects of the medication, it is advised that you arrange to have a friend or family member drive you home after treatment.
  • Will I have bad memories of my dental treatment? With oral conscious sedation, you will feel completely relaxed and have little to no memory of your dental procedures.

Thanks to sedation dentistry options like oral conscious sedation, you no longer have to dread or postpone necessary dental treatment due to fear and anxiety. Contact your dentist to find out how they can help you conquer your fears and restore your oral health with this gentle approach to dentistry.


We treat patients from Louisville and the surrounding area

Invislaign Louisville

Invisalign: A Modern Way to Improve your Smile

One of the newest ways to spruce up your look is to correct your teeth with Invisalign. This is an orthodontic solution that allows your teeth to be straightened without having to wear unsightly or embarrassing traditional braces. Invisalign allows you to improve your smile without affecting your eating habits, oral care routine, or self-esteem throughout the treatment process.

Description:
A series of customized plastic aligners are created to wear over your teeth to gradually move them into better position. You are able to see your treatment plan on a computer before treatment even begins, and your dentist monitors progress during checkups to make sure things are changing as desired. The clear aligners with Invisalign are popular because they are nearly invisible, can be removed for cleaning and eating, and are comfortable without causing irritation.

Correction:
Invisalign corrects various dental issues, including crowded teeth, gaps, overbites, underbites, or crossbites. Dentists often advise wearing retainers after treatment to ensure that teeth remain in their new position.

Process:
Once you select a dentist for your Invisalign treatment, an examination and discussion of goals will determine if this type of orthodontics is right for you. If you are a good candidate, a mold will be made of your teeth as well as a three dimensional image to help your dentist determine your treatment plan.

Maintenance:
Invisalign aligners are easily cleaned when removed from your mouth with gentle brushing and rinsing. You can perform your normal oral hygiene routine before returning the aligners to your mouth.

If you live in the Louisville area contact us today

sugar-and-teeth

Avoiding Tooth Decay: Where Sugar Hides

You may already know that consuming sugar brings health risks with it. It can contribute to obesity, diabetes, and heart disease, but it can also harm your teeth and gums. Even if you avoid desserts and sugary treats, you may be consuming more sugar than you realize. You should be aware that sugar is hidden in foods that you may not have considered.

Since the sweetened taste of sugar entices many people, manufacturers tend to add sugar to just about anything. Examples include crackers, condiments, salad dressing, peanut butter, yogurt, sauces, and protein bars. Manufacturers also list sugar on food labels under other names to trick people. Some alternate names for sugar are sucrose, dextrose, maltose, and molasses. Another hidden ingredient to avoid is high fructose corn syrup.

How can you avoid sugar if it’s lurking in the foods you enjoy? Here are some helpful hints in limiting your sugar intake:

  • Eat whole food instead of processed food. Vegetables, fruits, and nuts are some other choices that will fill you up without the added sugar.
  • Look for products that are sugarless or don’t have added sugars. Even foods labeled “low sugar” may contain more than you’d like.
  • Drink sugarless beverages that won’t flood your mouth with sugar. Sodas, sweetened juices, and sweetened coffee provide lots of sugar and calories. Water is always an ideal choice to quench your thirst.
  • Steer clear of artificial sweeteners, which don’t fill you up and leave you craving more sweets.
  • Give yourself time to get used to having less sugar in your diet. Foods may taste less satisfying as you adjust, but you’ll get accustomed to the flavors that foods provide without the extra sweetness.

We look forward to seeing you in our Louisville dental office

 

teeth whitening

Reasons Your Teeth May No Longer Be White

It can be rather upsetting to see that your smile is no longer as bright and appealing as it used to. Most people’s teeth become stained and discolored and result of diet and poor oral hygiene habits. It can make the whole appearance look dull and unkempt, giving others the impression you don’t take good care of yourself. Let’s find out the causes and what you can do about it.

Causes
There are some reasons that teeth become stained or yellowed. The culprits for tooth discoloration are as follows:

  • Tobacco – Smoking or chewing on them stains teeth.
  • Foods and drinks – coffee, colas, wines, tea, berries, sauces, and other items that you consume can damage your tooth color.
  • Medications – certain medications are known to discolor teeth, sometimes causing severe stains that are difficult to remove.
  • Poor oral hygiene – improper brushing and flossing is key in removing plaque and stains.
  • Age – aging wears away tooth enamel and reveals the yellowish dentin underneath.
  • Disease – some diseases can harm tooth enamel and trigger discoloration. Certain medical treatments like radiation and chemotherapy can also discolor teeth.
  • Environment – excessive fluoride exposure can stain teeth; this is known as fluorosis.
  • Genetics – some people are more prone to tooth discoloration than others.
  • Trauma – a hit to the maxillofacial region can damage the tooth and cause discoloration due to pulp necrosis.

Prevention
Lifestyle changes can prevent tooth discoloration, such as avoiding foods and drinks known to stain teeth. Improving oral hygiene is another step in the right direction, including regular brushing and flossing and consistent professional teeth cleanings.

Treatment
The options vary depending on the severity of discoloration and goals of the patient. Whitening methods include over-the-counter whitening products, at-home whitening kits provided by the dentist, professional in-office whitening treatments, bonding, and dental veneers. These tools cater for various needs according to patient’s concern.

Our dental office is located in Louisville

Do Your Wisdom Teeth Need to be Removed?

While not everyone needs to have their wisdom teeth removed, third molars are the most likely to cause you serious dental problems. Monitoring the health of your wisdom teeth, with cooperation from your dental professional, is the best way to avoid serious complications before they arise. The following are indications you may need to consider oral surgery to extract trouble wisdom teeth:

  • Wisdom tooth pain could be a result of infection and decay. Third molars are the most difficult to clean, due to their position at the back of the mouth, making them a prime breeding ground for plaque and bacteria which then attacks the tooth.
  • If you have a small mouth, the emergence of wisdom teeth can cause crowding of existing teeth. As wisdom teeth appear they may begin to force your other teeth out of the way, causing misalignment. Removing the third molars makes room for existing teeth.
  • Wisdom teeth that do not emerge properly can cause irritation to the gums that may lead to gum infections and immense discomfort.
  • When wisdom teeth start to emerge at awkward angles, it can cause them to become impacted. Third molars that get stuck in the gums sometimes create pockets that harbor bacteria and debris that cause serious decay and infection, as well as bad breath issues.

While not all wisdom teeth require extraction, there are many complications associated with third molars that indicate removing them would be in your best interest. By monitoring the emergence and ongoing health of your wisdom teeth, you can avoid serious dental problems. Consult with your dentist about the condition of your wisdom teeth to ensure a lifetime of healthy teeth.


Our dental office is located in Louisville

Invislaign in Louisville

Adults: Living with Invisalign

But am I too old to deal with the hassle of teeth straightening? You may be surprised to learn how little your routine will change with Invisalign. From your morning schedule, to meals, work-outs, and bedtime you can go about your day in much the same way as before you chose to beautify your smile with this state of the art treatment.

Always rushed in the morning? Simply pop out the Invisalign aligners, brush and floss normally, and pop them right back in place. To clean the aligners, you can either use the cleaning kit provided or brush and rinse with warm water. The process is easy and quick, allowing you to get out the door to your meeting or carpool in a flash.

Big lunch with clients or a special luncheon? No problem. With Invisalign, you remove the aligners during meals. No worries about spinach stuck in metal brackets and wires, or restrictions on the types of food you can eat. Enjoy your lunch with confidence.

But I love to play basketball at lunch, and soccer with my kids? If contact sports are a big part of your life, Invisalign won’t get in your way. You can leave the aligners in without concern that you might cut your mouth, or remove them if you normally wear a mouth guard when playing. Score another point for Invisalign!

I’m so tired by bedtime that I just want to fall into bed, won’t they take forever to clean? With Invisalign, no need to worry about the tedious cleaning and flossing between brackets and wires as with traditional braces. Since the aligners are removed for oral hygiene tasks, you can simply brush and floss your teeth normally, and then brush and rinse your aligners. It’s so quick that your pillow won’t have time to miss you.

As you can see, with Invisalign, your daily routine will experience minimal changes, but your smile will achieve maximum results!

We treat patients from Louisville and the surrounding area

How Your Diet Affects Your Oral Health

The foods and drinks you consume affect more than your waistline. Your diet provides you with the nutrients you need and impacts your overall health, and also affects the health of your teeth and gums. Let’s see what the choices you make in your diet mean to your oral health.

Nutrients

If you don’t include certain nutrients in your diet, it’s harder for the tissues in your mouth to fight infection. This can promote gum disease, which can lead to tooth loss if not treated properly and early. Experts suggest that gum disease advances faster and can become more severe in people who don’t have a nutritious diet. Ask your doctor for suggestions for a healthy diet full of helpful nutrients.

Balanced diet

Your goal should be to eat a variety of foods from the five major food groups. These include whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean protein, and low-fat dairy items. It’s also important to drink plenty of water.

Sugar

Sugary foods and drinks are enemies for your oral health, because sugar is proven to contribute to tooth decay. When plaque comes into contact with sugar in your mouth, it causes acid to attack your teeth and lead to decay. Limit the amount of sugar you consume by reading the nutritional labels on foods and drinks, and opt for items that are lowest in sugar. Soft drinks, candy, pastries, and cookies are common sources of sugar.

Snacking

Avoid snacking in between meals, and choose healthy foods like fruit or cheese when you do snack. When you eat foods as part of a meal, it is less harmful to your teeth than eating lots of snacks throughout the day. This is a result of more saliva being released during a meal, which helps wash food from your mouth and lessen the impact of harmful acids.

Dental care

Practice good oral hygiene like regular flossing and brushing with fluoride toothpaste, and visit your dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings.

If you need a dentist in Louisville contact us today

Should You Choose Crowns or Veneers?

If you have damaged or decayed teeth you may be considering options to restore both the look and function of your smile. Crowns and veneers are both utilized by cosmetic dentists to accomplish these goals. Which should you choose? Both crowns and veneers have pros and cons, and some distinct differences.

A crown is a cap that is placed over the tooth to reinforce the tooth and restore its original size and shape. Crowns are bonded into place and cover the entire tooth that is visible above the gum line. Crowns are most often used when the tooth has serious problems with structural integrity, often caused by decay. Cracked, broken, or worn down teeth also get crowns. Crowns modify how the tooth looks, and can help restore a more perfect smile. Crowns can be made of stainless steel, resin, porcelain, ceramic and other metals.

Veneers are similar to crowns in that they are used to restore the appearance of a tooth. Veneers utilize a thin shell of either porcelain or composite material that is placed over the tooth to protect it from damage and correct its appearance. Veneers require the structure of the tooth surface to be altered to bond it to the tooth.

Veneers are most commonly used to restore the outward appearance of a tooth, while crowns are typically used for structural repair. If your goal is simply to change the appearance of your teeth, veneers may be the best option. If you have extensive tooth decay or trauma, a crown might be the best choice. Consult with your dental professional to find out if a crown or veneers would be most appropriate for your specific dental issues.

Our dental office is located in Louisville

Wisdom teeth dentist

Wisdom Teeth: Should They Stay or Should They Go?

Wisdom teeth, your third set of molars, are named that because they are the final teeth to erupt. They usually come in between ages 17 to 25, and are located in the very back of your mouth on the top and bottom. Your dentist will examine you to find out if your wisdom teeth are properly positioned and healthy. If they aren’t, your dentist will recommend removal.

How do you know wisdom teeth should be removed?
Some of the signs there is a problem with your wisdom teeth include pain, infection, cysts, gum disease, damage to nearby teeth, and tooth decay. If you experience any of these symptoms, see your dentist for an examination.

What are impacted wisdom teeth?
Sometimes your teeth just don’t have room to grow in properly. They can erupt at angles within your jaw, sometimes even horizontally. If wisdom teeth aren’t able to erupt normally they can become trapped, or impacted, inside your jaw. Symptoms of impacted wisdom teeth are pain, infection, and swelling. When teeth are impacted, they can lead to serious problems. Many dentists want to avoid impacted teeth and therefore remove your wisdom teeth before they erupt or grow too big.

Are there less obvious reasons to remove wisdom teeth?
It’s not always clear when these teeth way in the back of your mouth are causing problems, or might in the future. Many dentists remove them in teens or young adults so they don’t cause problems later, or become too firmly planted in the jaw. Also, sometimes wisdom teeth are removed as part of orthodontic, periodontal, or restorative treatment plans.

What happens if I don’t have them removed?
Some dentists prefer to wait and see what happens with time to your wisdom teeth. Make sure you continue to have these teeth monitored, because the risk of problems doesn’t go away with age. Removing wisdom teeth isn’t always necessary, because if there’s room in your mouth and they come in properly, they work just like any other teeth. The key is to watch them to make sure problems don’t arise in the future.

Dental office for wisdom teeth removal

sedation dentist

Signs You Could Benefit From Sedation Dentistry

Sedation dentistry at our Louisville dental office helps patients get the care they need for their teeth and can turn an otherwise stressful experience into a comfortable dental visit. Initially developed to focus on patients with special needs and those with acute dental phobias, it has progressed to be utilized by a wide range of patient groups.

Putting off dental care can affect all levels of your health. Even regular cleanings are shown to improve overall health. Untreated issues can lead to bad breath, gingivitis or periodontitis, bone loss, acute gum disease, or other serious issues.

Have you put off your dental care? Have you have been wondering if a faster, more comfortable and relaxed dental experience could benefit you? If so, see if some of the symptoms below are relatable to you.

  • You miss regular check-ups and postpone care.
  • You experience anxiety at the mere thought of a dental visit.
  • It has been years since your last dental examination.
  • The sights, sounds, and smells of a dental office cause you to feel uncomfortable and tense.
  • You feel exhausted after a dental visit. Your muscles are tired and sore.
  • You have an acute gag reflex and worry about vomiting during a dental procedure.
  • You have difficulty getting numb during procedures.
  • You have a physical condition such as Parkinson’s disease or cerebral palsy that causes you to make involuntary movements.
  • You have TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint disorder) or are unable to keep your mouth open for long periods of time.
  • Your jaw might be sore for days after a dental visit.
  • You need extensive, painful or treatments over several visits, such as gum surgery, bone grafting or extractions.
  • You have a fearful and anxious child who won’t follow instructions or sit still during a dental visit.
  • You desire the most comfortable dental experience possible.

Does even one of these descriptions ring true for you? If so, talk to your dentist about sedation dentistry today! Don’t wait to enjoy the optimal level of oral care available to you.

Schedule your appointment at our Louisville dental office