Orthodontic Care Now Available!

We are pleased to announce an addition to our team – Dr. Gerald (‘Jerry’) Wesley, an Orthodontic Specialist. Dr Wesley, Orthodontist

Dr. Wesley brings over 17 years of experience of creating properly aligned smiles combined with optimal esthetics. He has a long list of impressive credentials and provides treatment with a warm, caring personality.

In addition to providing traditional braces for children, teens and adults, Dr. Wesley is Certified in Invisalign and Invisalign Teen. (Learn more about Dr. Wesley at: http://www.banrbarbatdds.com/meet-dr-wesley.php

If you, or someone you know, would like to discuss orthodontic care with Dr. Wesley, call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles and ask for a free, initial consultation.  Also, ask about easy payment plans that blend comfortably into almost any budget.

Don’t Let Dental Insurance Create Future Problems

When we place Dental Implants to replace a single tooth, it is often because the tooth fractured below the gum line. When a tooth breaks or cracks beneath the realm of a protective crown, the tooth must be removed and replaced.

When hairline fractures appear, we typically recommend a crown to protect the tooth, avoiding a potential break. The reason some patients decline or delay having a tooth crowned is due to dental insurance constraints. It is unfortunate when dental repairs are postponed solely because of one’s insurance coverage.

Once a tooth is removed, the patient must decide how to replace it. Because insurance companies prefer to cover the least expensive methods of replacement, the patient must decide if their ‘approved’ option is what serves their long-term, best interest.

Keep in mind that these insurance companies are for-profit firms. Dental insurance is meant to help with expenses for basic procedures (cleanings, etc.) or repairs (a yearly allowance for crowns or fillings, for example). Dental insurance is not, and never will be, total coverage that ensures your long-term dental wellness.

Having a healthy, confident and appealing smile is a positive part of your overall health. Be proactive so you can avoid costly and time consuming repairs regardless of what dental insurance companies allow. Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles to discuss lasting oral wellness at an affordable pace while maximizing dental insurance coverage.

How Gum Disease Sneaks Up On You

Like most diseases that form in our bodies, periodontal (gum) disease begins silently. People who develop cancer or heart disease typically have no warning signs in the earliest stages of formation. The same is true for gum disease. By the time symptoms are obvious, such as gums that bleed when brushing or tender, sore gums, many assume these problems are normal and ignore them. This merely allows gum disease to progress further.

Initial signs of periodontal disease, once they emerge, include gums that bleed when you brush, persistent bad breath, tender gums, swollen spots around teeth and gums that pull away from teeth. If your dental cleanings are uncomfortable, it may have less to do with the Hygienist’s technique and more to do with heightened gum sensitivity. People with healthy gums rarely complain of discomfort during oral hygiene visits.

The earliest form of gum disease is Gingivitis. It begins with a buildup of plaque, which is a sticky film that forms on teeth. This film is an accumulation of oral bacteria. When not removed on a regular basis (such as with twice daily brushing and daily flossing), plaque hardens into calculus. Calculus attaches to teeth and is impossible to brush or floss away. When a dental hygienist scrapes at teeth with a special instrument, she is likely removing calculus buildup.

The bacteria of calculus not only attack tooth enamel, they eat away at tender gum tissues. For people who are not regular with their 6-month oral hygiene exams and cleanings, the delay in calculus removal allows for a steady progression of oral bacteria growth and damage.

Gum disease also has the ability to be an inflammation trigger once bloodborne. Oral bacteria of gum disease can enter the bloodstream through tears in weakened gum tissue. Numerous studies have associated this bacteria with an inflammatory reaction that can trigger an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes, arthritis, preterm babies and much more.

Although research findings have created more awareness and emphasis on maintaining good periodontal health, gum disease is still rampant in the United States. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) state that half of all American adults age 30 and over have some level of gum disease.

If you have missed or delayed regular dental check-ups, you are advised to have a thorough dental examination. From this, we can develop a plan to restore your mouth to a healthy state (and help to protect your overall health in the process!). Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles for more information.

Affordable Dental Implants? Enjoy This Fall Special!

Dental Implants are an excellent investment! They are safe, have a high success rate and are designed to last a lifetime. Add to that their ability to restore a stable bite and natural chewing strength so you can eat a healthy, delicious selection of foods.

Not all insurances cover dental implants, deeming them as ‘elective.’ Since dentures and partials are cheaper for insurance companies to cover, that option is their choice for you. However, what is in your long-term best interests for active, healthy living is YOUR choice!

Now, we’ve made Dental Implants even more affordable. Through October 2014, we are offering a Free Consultation, Free Digital Radiographs (x-rays), Free Oral Sedation and $100 Gift Certificate towards Dental Implant treatment! That’s a value of $582!!!

Hurry and take advantage of this unique savings opportunity. Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles to schedule your free consultation to begin!

Too Old For Dental Implants? No Way!

It’s not unusual for our office to place Dental Implants in patients who are in the 80’s or 90’s. Older adults have a similar success rate with implants compared with younger people, which is very high. As long as a patient’s gum tissue is at a healthy level prior to placement, they’re never too old to enjoy the benefits of Dental Implants.

Regardless of one’s age, Dental Implants continually achieve their designed goals of recreating the presence of tooth roots and restoring one’s ability to bite, chew, eat, laugh, and speak confidently and comfortably. Additionally, their ability to preserve a healthy jaw bone structure and support proper alignment of neighboring teeth enhances the life of any remaining natural teeth.

If you are an adult age 65 and older, you are in a rapidly growing age group in the United States. In 1900, only 4% of the population were age 65 and older. In 1990, this had jumped to 12.6%. By 2030, the projected numbers of Americans aged 65 and older is expected to be nearly 22% of the population.

Older adults are also going to the dentist more than at any time in history. In 1983, the average number of yearly dental visits per older adult was 1.5, the lowest for any reported age group. However, the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) reported that between 1983 – 1989, there was a 30% increase by those aged 65 and older who were seeing the dentist on a regular basis. This likely has much to do with the drop in total edentulism (having no natural teeth) for aging adults. According to the National Institute for Dental Research, there was a decrease of elderly adults who are missing all their natural teeth from 60% in 1957 to about 41% in 1986.

In our office, we are equipped to perform implant placement safely, skillfully and comfortably. We offer both Oral and I.V. Sedation and can restore your implants (attach the final teeth) giving a natural look and feel.

For more information on Dental Implants or to discuss your concerns, ask for a free Consultation by calling Toll Free 1-866-9-Smiles.

Yikes! It’s The Weekend & My Crown Came Off!

Occasionally, I get a call after hours or on the weekend from a patient who has had a crown come off. Although rare, this can occur for various reasons but the crown can be easily reattached if certain steps are taken.

For a quick fix to hold the crown in place until you can get into our office, purchase a dental cement, sold in most drug stores. You’ll only need a small amount but this will secure the crown to the tooth temporarily. Try to avoid biting or chewing in the area of the crown and brush gently. When flossing, use an upward (if an upper crown) or downward (if a lower crown) motion only, pulling the floss out as you reach the gum line.

Even though drug store cement seems to secure the crown, it is a material that is made to be easily removed by a dentist so a dental adhesive  can restore your ability to bite, chew and speak without concern.

NEVER use permanent household glues (such as Crazy Glue or Gorilla Glue) on a crown. Once this material is in the crown, it is extremely difficult to remove and the crown could be damaged during the process, requiring a new crown.

If the crown chips, it may require replacement depending on the size and area of the chip. A broken crown will need to be remade. In either case, bring your crown with you to your appointment.

While dental emergencies are rare, they seem to occur at the worst of times. We want to make replacement as quick and easy as possible to get you back to your terrific smile!

Call 1-866-9-Smiles for more information.

How To Determine Canker Sore Or Cold Sore

We always urge patients to react to any unusual sore or discoloration in the mouth or on the lips. Oral cancer is one of the most deadly of all cancers when not caught early. However, this time of year, it seems that canker and cold sores are more prevalent.

Do you have a Canker or Cold Sore? 
Typically, if the sore is located inside your mouth, it’s likely a canker sore. If it’s on the outside, it is probably a cold sore.

Canker sores (mouth ulcers) generally occur inside the mouth and are bacterial in nature. They are often triggered by trauma such as biting your cheek, jabbing your gum with your toothbrush or even overzealous tooth cleaning.

Cold sores are tiny, clear, fluid-filled blisters that form around the mouth and are caused by the herpes simplex virus living inside nerve tissues. (It is not the same virus that causes genital herpes.) Here are some guidelines:

A cold sore occurs outside the mouth. A canker sore is on the inside of your mouth.

A cold sore appears as tiny, clear fever blisters. A canker sore is a small white or gray ulcer on the lips or under the nose base, often with a red border.

A cold sore will last about a week while a canker sore may hang around for one or two weeks. Keep in mind a cold sore is not contagious, but a canker sore is.

A cold sore can be treated with Aloe Vera or over-the-counter topical anesthetics to cut pain and discomfort. You can also rinse with an antimicrobial mouthwash or salt dissolved in warm water.

Canker sores require over-the-counter medications or prescription antiviral drugs to prevent outbreak, especially if they are frequent. Over-the-counter oral anesthetics may help with pain relief. To speed healing, we can also use our dental laser to greatly reduce discomfort and quicken the pace of getting rid of it. This is especially helpful for brides, people preparing for group presentations, etc.

Please remember that any sore or unusual spot that doesn’t get better in two weeks should be examined IMMEDIATELY. Oral cancer can take on many shapes and colors and is a serious, and even deadly, disease that requires early treatment.

Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles if you have questions or need an examination.

Missing Tooth Can Mar More Than Smile’s Appearance

If you lose a back tooth, why replace it if the tooth isn’t visible in a smile?

The arrangement of your teeth is a balanced support system that provides proper support and stability. Losing a tooth and not replacing it can create a domino effect of ongoing oral problems. Typical problems include drifting, shifting, chips, broken teeth and an increased risk of gum disease and decay.

In a normal, healthy mouth, there is a natural balance of teeth. Each tooth has three or four companion teeth. These include the adjacent teeth on either side as well as upper or lower teeth that meet them. Upper and lower teeth work together to provide comfortable chewing function.

When a tooth is lost, statistics show that the companion tooth will be lost next. Then, the next closest tooth is subjected to the same conditions. With each tooth lost, the problems are magnified and the cycle of tooth loss continues.

While a fixed bridge restores your smile’s appearance and chewing function, it stabilizes the surrounding teeth. The placement process involves the attachment of the bridge to adjacent teeth. Bordering teeth are prepared with crowns or inlays. The bridge of the replacement tooth (or teeth) is then attached to the crowns and secured in place. The result is an appealing look and feel.

The best time to replace missing teeth is immediately after the tooth is lost. Ask for a no-cost consultation to learn options to help you accomplish a confident, comfortable smile. During this discussion, your questions will be answered and we’ll review all options of tooth replacement so you can select the treatment best for your needs and goals.

Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles.

Best Way To Halt Constant Problems In Your Mouth

If you built a new home, you’d certainly make sure it was positioned soundly on a dependable foundation. Your mouth needs a good foundation as well.

A mouth that has healthy pink gums is generally one that has minimal bacteria. The lower the bacteria level in one’s mouth, the less risk one has of developing cavities, gum problems (including sensitivity), tooth loss and underlying issues with supporting bones.

Once a patient’s mouth is restored to good health, we work to ensure their teeth are sufficiently repaired and/or replaced. From this point on, maintaining a healthy mouth requires just minutes each day for oral care at home along with regular check-ups and dental cleanings twice a year. Most problems that occur thereafter are typically minimal and can be repaired easily.

Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles to learn how your smile can be worry-free. Ask for a free consultation so we can discuss your needs and what to expect.