Category Archives: gummy smile

Beautiful Smiles Have Advantages That Go Beyond Appearance

While definitions of beauty vary, symmetry is a common component of how most assess a face as beautiful. A common standard used is a balanced eye alignment with both sides of the mouth, nose and cheeks mirroring one another. However, many beauty ‘experts’ agree that, regardless of meeting these standards, beauty exudes from those who possess an aura of confidence.

Being confident, however, requires one to feel confident. That sounds so simple, yet it’s not. When we stop and examine what creates confidence in a person, many say it’s feeling self-assured about the impression one makes. And, right or wrong, we know that a large part of this impression is created by what others see on the outside.

In my twenty years in dental practice, I’ve seen hundreds of patients who decided, after much contemplation, to have a smile makeover. And rightly so, since many surveys have shown that the first thing people often notice when meeting someone is their smile.DrB Pt Mirror copy

Modern cosmetic dentistry offers a number of durable, natural looking and long-lasting methods to create a smile that enhances one’s appearance and self-confidence. In some instances, for example, placing porcelain veneers on just the front six upper teeth can dramatically improve a smile’s appearance with a look and feel that is as natural as real teeth.

You may remember “Extreme Makeover,” a series on television that aired from 2002 to 2007. Each episode followed an individual who had been chosen for a total makeover. Typically, the individual was taken through weight loss and toning, plastic surgery, hair and makeup, and smile enhancement. What quickly became key criteria for the candidates selected was their need for cosmetic dentistry.  Why?

After the show began, it became very apparent to the producers that the most significant changes in appearance emerged from the smile enhancements. While losing weight, a nose job or breast lift were all beneficial, it was the smile that often had the most dramatic effect when it came to improving appearance.

When smile makeovers are completed in our office, I’ve had many patients break out in tears at the new smile they see in the mirror. And, even though the expenses associated with some smile enhancements can be a financial stretch, I’ve never had a patient who didn’t say their new smile was “worth every cent” with most adding, “I only wish I hadn’t waited so long to do this.”

Yet, it’s not what occurs in the moments after their new smile is completed as what emerges over time. I’ve seen a number of my smile makeover patients lose weight, pursue work promotions, get a new hairstyle, become more social, smile more often and seem more positive about life in general. It’s as if the new smiles released self-esteem that had been hiding behind smiles that kept their true self-confidence tucked beneath the surface.

Time and again, research has shown the dramatic effect a smile has on one’s overall demeanor. Apparently, the act of smiling causes the brain to release endorphins, which are the feel-good chemicals in the brain. Findings also show that even faking a smile causes the brain to react as a mood booster.

The simple act of smiling is good for you, inside and out! A smile that enhances our appearance tends to be shared more often. This sets off a domino effect. Since our mood is boosted from our brain’s chemical reactions, it makes us feel more positive. Feeling more positive makes us feel more confident. And so on.

Whether you need to replace missing teeth, old crowns or bridgework, need to realign crooked or crowded teeth or repair broken, chipped or worn teeth, today’s cosmetic dentistry offers excellent options. And, many are surprised at the affordability of achieving the smile they desire.

Begin with a no cost, no obligation consultation. We’ll talk about what may work best for your goals, comfort options, payment plans and anticipated treatment time.

When you consider the small amount of space that a smile has on our bodies, it amazing at how significantly it can transform our appearance and mindset one way or another. Yet, what nature may have denied, modern dentistry can give back!

Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles to arrange a time convenient for you.

Beautiful Smiles Have Natural Appearance

I remember a dear female relative whom I’ll refer to as Bess. Bess was rather meticulous about her appearance. Her attire was always color-coordinated and she wore matching jewelry with every outfit. She was one of those ladies who always had “every hair in place.” Yet, the thing that always stood out the most – to everyone – was her drawn-on eyebrows.

Although from a good distance away, I imagine that her eyebrows looked, for the most part, like eyebrows. Yet, the closer you got, the more obvious it became that Bess’ eyebrows were ‘fakes.’ Unfortunately, this seemed to be the feature that stood out the most and in a not-so-flattering way.

When any of our facial features fails to look natural, it also fails to complement our overall facial appearance. And, it tends to be the feature that gets noticed most. Since your smile is one of your most prominent facial features, it makes sense that something unnatural in appearance would stand out a great deal.

When a dentist applies modern techniques, materials and technology to smile enhancements, the word “natural” should describe the look, feel and function. This is accomplished through advanced training that help to correctly size, shade and shape your restorations (such as porcelain veneers, crowns, and crown-&-bridge combinations) so that they truly complement your facial features. For example, by slightly elongating teeth, we can make a wide face appear more slender.

Over the years, though, I’ve seen a number of ‘cosmetics gone wrong’ cases, such as in the repair of a gap between front teeth. I’ve seen where dentists widened the two teeth to meet, only to create a ‘bunny look’ for the patient. Yes, this probably gave the patient a lower treatment fee but simply replaced the the gap with an unbalanced smile that stood out in a different way, not an improved way.

Using the proper materials are important as well. I typically recommend porcelain restorations. Like natural teeth, these reflect light naturally and have a luminosity like that of real teeth. Too, the gum tissue that arches each tooth should also be at the same level as neighboring teeth. This gives an even smile line of teeth framed by balanced curves.

Actual Patient of Dr. Ban Barbat
Actual Patient of Dr. Ban Barbat

Just as important is the placement and alignment of the teeth. As a neuro-muscular dentist, I see patients who have endured years of headaches, migraines, dizziness, ear ringing, sore jaw joints and night-time clenching and/or grinding. Many have worn, chipped, or fractured teeth.

My advanced training and diagnostic technology allows me to hone in on what is contributing to an imbalance in bite alignment. Amazingly, just one or two improperly placed or designed crowns can lead to years of suffering.

There is always a cheaper way to do something. When it comes to cosmetic dentistry, however, a ‘good deal’ typically means short-cuts and compromises that DO show. In our office, we are dedicated to creating smiles that give the most natural and flattering look combined with proper function and exceptional longevity. Our goal is to have people compliment you on your smile because it is beautiful and looks like you were lucky enough to be born with it!

For a private, no cost consultation appointment, call 1-866-9-Smiles. During this time, I’ll make recommendations that can help you enjoy a smile that will bring out your personality in an attractive way. We can also have our financial coordinator meet with you to explain payment options, if you like.


The What & Why Of Crown Lengthening

Crown lengthening is not a common term for most patients since it is recommended only occasionally. Yet, when it is recommended, the results can make a significant difference to the health and appearance of one’s smile.

For example, crown lengthening may be able to save a tooth that has broken close to the gum line. Typically, a tooth that breaks at the gum line must be removed. However, by using crown lengthening procedures to remove  gum tissue, we can expose more of the tooth. This can provide sufficient tooth structure that can support a crown. This can prevent the patient from the decisions – and subsequent costs – of tooth replacement.

Essentially, crown lengthening is a procedure that repositions or removes gum tissue. In most cases, it is recommended to enhance the appearance of a smile.

Crown lengthening is most often performed to correct an uneven smile line. This is when the gum tissue that arches over each tooth  is at a different level than the arches over surrounding teeth. This ‘up and down’ line creates a jumbled look for teeth most visible in a smile. Even straight teeth with an uneven smile line can look ‘off.’ By creating an unified smile line over teeth, crown lengthening provides a more flattering appearance.

Before & After Of Crown Lengthening
Before & After Of Crown Lengthening

Crown lengthening can also repair a ‘gummy smile.’ This is a genetic trait and not detrimental to one’s oral health. However, it does cause some people to feel self-conscious when smiling. A gummy smile is one that shows too much gum tissue above the teeth. Katie Couric’s smile is a good example. In mild cases, gum tissue can be removed without the need to crown teeth. However, crowns are often recommended so the gums can be recontoured to a more natural level.

Another reason for crown lengthening is to help seal the gum tissue that surrounds a tooth at its base. When a crown is placed, the gums at its entry point require time before they become securely attached. This helps to prevent the entry of bacteria that can lead to periodontal (gum) disease, The procedure can help to secure gum tissue around the crown to protect from bacterial penetration.

The procedure of crown lengthening is known as a gingivectomy. It is typically performed while the patient relaxes under oral sedation. Afterwards, some swelling and tenderness may occur for several days. Most patients do fine with over-the-counter medications although prescription strength is available if desired. Smokers can expect a longer healing period due to the drying effects of the chemicals in tobacco.

You should notice gradual improvement each day and feel your gums are back to normal within several weeks. However, the results of the procedure can be seen much sooner! The beautiful look that crown lengthening provides will be obvious very quickly!

If reshaping your gums could give you a more appealing smile, crown lengthening is a safe, successful procedure. In our office we use a dental laser, which helps to provide a precision line, enhances comfort and speeds healing. Begin with a free consultation to discuss what may be involved in creating the smile you desire. Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles to schedule.


Cosmetic Dentistry Should Never Look Like Cosmetic Dentistry

After the Academy Awards were televised a couple of years ago, all the rumble was NOT about the winners. Social media lit up with comments on the dreadful face lift of one of the presenters. The once-ravishing movie star hadn’t been in the public eye for quite some time. Her invitation to present was a surprise to many, yet it was her face lift that was the biggest surprise.

Her face lift was more like a face ‘pull.’ It had a ‘wind-blown’ look, where the skin is pulled taut from the center of the face to the ears. The plastic surgeons I know use a technique that pulls facial muscles upward, rather than pulling the skin tight. This upward lift gives a much more natural appearance, bringing youthfulness back to the individual’s face while preserving the skin’s suppleness. The advantage is that it doesn’t look like the individual had plastic surgery.

Like outdated plastic surgery techniques, there are still those who use old techniques and materials for cosmetic dentistry. Although these older methods may whiten teeth, camouflage some flaws and even out crooked, crowded teeth, it’s not too hard to spot someone who has had dentistry gone wrong.

An example of cosmetics gone wrong is in the repair of a gap between the two front teeth. I’ve seen cases where bonding was used to widen the two teeth, leaving the patient with a ‘bunny look.’ While a cheaper alternative than four or six veneers, perhaps, the individual’s gap has merely been replaced with an awkward appearance.

Consider the teeth. When correctly sized, shaded and shaped, porcelain veneers, crowns and crown-&-bridge combinations should complement an individual’s facial features. For example, longer teeth may be recommended to slenderize a wide face.

Additionally, the teeth should reflect light and have a luminosity like that of natural teeth. A solid, uniform white tooth will look like a fake tooth because real teeth simply aren’t solid, white blocks. The gum tissue that arches each tooth should also be at the same level as neighboring teeth for an even smile line with a natural curve.

Cosmetic Dentistry Patient of Dr. Ban Barbat
Cosmetic Dentistry Patient of Dr. Ban Barbat

Just as important is the placement and alignment of the teeth. As a neuro-muscular dentist, I see patients who have endured years of headaches, migraines, dizziness, ear ringing, sore jaw joints and night-time clenching and/or grinding. Many have worn teeth or chipped or fractured teeth. My advanced training and diagnostic equipment enables me to pinpoint teeth that contribute to an imbalance in the jaw joints, head and neck muscles and chewing function. All it takes is one or two improperly placed or designed crowns.

There is always a cheaper way to do something. Like anything, you get what you pay for in cosmetic dentistry. We create new smiles based upon the most natural, flattering look combined with proper function and exceptional longevity. Our goal is to have people compliment your smile because it is beautiful and looks like you were lucky enough to be born with it!

There is no cost for a consultation appointment, and no obligation. Let’s sit down together and discuss your options. Then, I can discuss an anticipated treatment time and cost to achieve a smile you’ll share with pleasure and pride! Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles for an appointment.

Smiles Put You At Your Best!

A girlfriend recently shared her secret to a facelift alternative. “I noticed that when I smile, it pulls sagging areas up. So, I try to remember to keep a smile on my face!”

Liz is right, but there are far more benefits to that smile of hers than a more youthful facial appearance. People who smile often are said to add two years to their life while frequent frowns tend to decrease one’s lifespan by a year. Why is this?

Smiling increases endorphins.  Endorphins are a chemical in your brain that lead to feelings of happiness, giving you a natural high. From some studies, you can effectively change your psychological and physiological state by smiling, even when faking a smile. Smiling is said to improve immunity, increase pain and frustration tolerance and heighten creativity levels.

When a smile shows chipped, broken or worn teeth, teeth that are discolored or crooked or missing teeth, people tend to ‘hold back’ on their smile. A subconscious habit of those with smile flaws is covering their smile with a hand or showing a ‘lips-only’ smile.

A beautiful smile enhances appearance, mood, and apparently your longevity! Who needs a facelift when a smile can do so many wonderful things?!!! Our dental office provides all services for every need. From orthodontics (braces and Invisalign) to dental implants or crown & bridge to porcelain crowns and veneers to tooth whitening, your best smile can be created in one location, often in just one or two appointments.

Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles for a free Consultation. During this time, we can discuss options that are best for you and I’ll answer your questions thoroughly. We can also discuss payment plans that allow you to make affordable monthly payments while enjoying the terrific smile you desire now!

Complete Dental Care For Every Smile!

People often first come to know us by hearing of our advanced technology and offering advanced treatments such as dental implants, cosmetic dentistry and restorative dentistry. However, the foundation of our practice is general dentistry, or what some refer to as ‘family dentistry.’

The way most think about general dentistry is for routine care, such as  6-month cleanings and exams. General dentistry also covers sealants, filling cavities and extractions.

We are proud to provide a comprehensive array of dental services, including:

• General Dentistry – Regular and preventive care for all ages

• Cosmetic Dentistry – Improving the appearance of smiles through crowns, veneers, bonding, tooth whitening, and gum recontouring

• Restorative Dentistry – Protecting or replacing teeth with crowns, crown & bridge, partials, dentures

• Implant Dentistry – All phases of dental implants including diagnosis, placement and attachment of the final teeth.

• Orthodontics including Invisalign – Tooth straightening for a healthy, natural smile.

• TMJ Therapy – Adjustments to correct most problems caused by bite misaligment.

• Sleep Apnea/Snoring Therapy – Custom-designed, comfortable mouth appliances are created to restore sound, restful sleep without the need for CPAP.

• Gum Recontouring & Gum Disease Therapy – Our technology can reshape gum tissue to provide a more natural smile line as well as combat many stages of periodontal disease.

• Oral & IV Sedation – We are highly experienced helping fearful patients and feature many comfort options, including these sedation types.

We pride ourselves on our complete care environment and ability to fulfill virtually every dental need for all ages. We are committed to exceptional comfort and optimal outcomes at every appointment.

Whenever you (or someone you know) have a dental need, of any type, we are happy to help. It is our goal to be the only dental office you’ll ever need!

What Attracts Men To Women The Most!

No one would dispute the overwhelming force of chemistry as the leader in what draws one to another. Chemistry is the unknown aura that creates that ‘spark’ almost immediately in matching two people together.

But, after chemistry, what makes or breaks this attraction? A survey of nearly 20,000 men was conducted to discover just what they noticed about a female. To no surprise, following chemistry, was “Smile.”

Men can determine a lot about a female’s smile. Of course, it is a significant facial feature that can enhance one’s appearance. A terrific smile also sends a message of a person who is fun and enjoys life and has a positive, upbeat personality.

A smile can also reveal one’s overall commitment to health. Women who have yellowed or stained teeth, missing or chipped teeth or signs of poor dental hygiene can create a poor impression of their overall hygiene commitment. It certainly lowers them on a ‘kissable’ scale.

The top ten list, in order of most noticed, is:
1. Chemistry
2. Smile
3. Kind nature
4. Sense of humor
5. Body type
6. Eyes
7. Intelligence
8. Communication skills
9. Mouth (lips and teeth)
10. Hair

Rather than worry about your hair or having a flat tummy, remember that it’s your smile he’ll notice first. As a matter of fact, before the chemistry can occur, he needs to approach you. What better way than to share a smile and give him something to compliment — a great opener to any conversation!

To discuss improving your smile, call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles for a free consultation. Let’s get you noticed!

A Fabulous Smile Brings Out A Fabulous YOU!

When we complete smile makeovers for our patients, of course we can ‘see’ how their new smile enhances their facial appearance. What we don’t see, however, is the dramatic effect that a fabulous smile has on one’s overall personality.

We’ve heard these ‘new smile’ patients tell us how they felt a new sense of confidence and improved self-esteem as a result. Most tell us they smile more often and find they laugh more. It’s no wonder that a terrific smile projects a more upbeat personality and a more positive individual.

Sometimes, even small changes to a smile can have a tremendous effect. We’ve placed veneers on just 4 front teeth and the patient felt “more attractive, like my smile flatters me all over!” Even bonding to fill in chips can beautify a smile.

If you are unhappy with the appearance of your smile, begin with a free Consultation appointment. Here, you’ll learn the options to help you achieve the smile you desire and the specifics of treatment. Call toll free 1-866-9-Smiles to arrange this time.

A new you may be just two appointments away!

Small Changes Can Make Fabulous Improvements!

Your smile is a significant part of your facial appearance. A wide, attractive smile shows confidence and projects an upbeat personality. When people are unhappy with their smile’s appearance, they tend to smile less often or cover their mouth when smiling or laughing. This indicates a feeling of insecurity or shyness that is often not the true nature of the individual.

Often, people don’t pursue cosmetic dentistry enhancements because they feel the expense will overwhelm them. However, in many cases, we are able to drastically improve a smile’s appearance with changes to just 4 or 6 teeth.

Today’s porcelain veneers and crowns have an exceptionally natural appearance. In many cases, we begin by whitening the patient’s teeth and then place shade-matched crowns or veneers on front teeth most visible in their smile. Many treatments are completed in just one or two visits.

Cosmetic dental enhancements ARE affordable! We offer several financial plans so our patients can enjoy their new smile while making monthly payments that are budget-friendly. Throughout my years in practice, I’ve never had a patient feel their investment wasn’t one of the best decisions they ever made!

Begin with a free consultation so we can discuss your options. Call 1-866-9-Smiles. Your new, fabulous smile may be just days away!