Dental Tips Blog

Sep
17

Will Braces Cause White Spots on Your Teeth?

Posted in Veneers

If you’re due to get braces in the near future, you’re likely afraid of getting some of those dreaded “white spots” or circles on your teeth, as well.

Here’s what you need to know about what causes them, and how to prevent it from happening.

What Are White Spots?

Tooth enamel that loses minerals is considered decalcified. When this happens, the enamel takes on a bright white, chalky appearance.

Decalcification can happen when teeth are exposed to too much fluoride during development. It also occurs as a result of long-term exposure to dental plaque.

Braces can cause enamel decalcification when plaque is allowed to accumulate in places that are hard to reach with a toothbrush or floss. The acids in this biofilm zap minerals out of the enamel, and you’re left with white spots around areas where the brackets and wires used to be.

Decalcified spots on enamel tend to be weaker than other areas on the tooth; they need to be well cared for to avoid developing cavities.

How to Avoid White Spots

Thankfully, white spots are not an inevitable part of getting braces. As long as you maintain a strict oral hygiene routine, you can keep your enamel healthy during orthodontic treatment.

Your daily routine may include:

  • Brushing after every meal, not just twice a day
  • Flossing every day
  • Using a fluoride and/or antiplaque rinse
  • A water flosser or powered toothbrush for extra clean

Minimizing White Spots

Tooth-colored fillings and porcelain veneers are great ways to restore your smile after braces if you have a lot of white spots. A little teeth bleaching may also help even out tooth color. Enamel remineralizing toothpastes can restore weakened areas as well.

Talk with your dentist for more ideas on preventing and treating white spots after orthodontics.

Posted on behalf of:
Soft Touch Dentistry
1214 Paragon Dr
O’Fallon, IL 62269
(618) 622-5050

Sep
9

Are Dental Veneers Permanent?

Posted in Veneers

Dental veneers have been getting people perfect smiles for decades.

You’re interested in what veneers have to offer, but you want to know how long they’ll last. Is the investment worth it?

Veneers Permanently Alter Teeth

To place a veneer, the dentist first has to remove a thin layer of enamel from the front of your upper tooth. This ensures that the veneer fits seamlessly with the rest of your tooth and doesn’t make your smile feel bulky.

But losing even that thin layer of enamel isn’t the best thing for your teeth. They can’t be left with absolutely nothing protecting them.

This means that once you get your teeth prepared for traditional porcelain veneers, there’s no going back – you’ll always have to wear veneers for the rest of your life.

What about the veneers themselves?

As Long As You Want

Veneers, like any other dental restoration, are susceptible to wear and tear over time.

The better you take care of your dental veneers, the longer they will last you.

You must carefully brush and floss around the teeth that have veneers. Otherwise, it’s possible to develop some decay at the margin where the porcelain meets your enamel.

You also have to be careful that you don’t accidentally chip or loosen a veneer by chewing on hard objects.

To make veneers last, you may have to kick a few habits:

  • Nail biting
  • Ice chewing
  • Teeth grinding

Investing in a mouthguard for sports or to prevent bruxism/clenching at night is another great way to protect your veneers.

If you damage your veneers, they will have to be replaced. They are not permanent in that sense.

Learn more about classic veneers and less permanent alternatives. Contact your local dentist.

Posted on behalf of:
Elegant Smiles
1955 Cliff Valley Way NE #100
Brookhaven, GA 30329
404-634-4224

May
20

Life with Veneers: 4 Things You Should Know

Posted in Veneers

Dental veneers are perfect for covering up deep stain and rough enamel. They can close up gaps and even out the shape of neighboring teeth.

Before you decide to get dental veneers, just make sure you are aware of their limitations.

  1. You can’t bleach them.

Your veneers will be designed to reflect the whiteness level you want at the time they are placed. After that, there’s no changing them. If you bleach your teeth later on, they could end up whiter than the veneers.

  1. You may need to cut back on the coffee.

New porcelain veneers are tough and they aren’t porous like tooth enamel. While they aren’t as likely to stain, you can still get some unsightly darkening at the margins where they’re bonded. Try to limit dark-colored foods and drinks.

  1. They can chip off.

Veneers don’t have the strength of natural teeth or dental crowns. If you bite on them at an angle with enough force, they can pop off. Granted, it takes a lot to do that, but you should stay away from chewing ice or using your teeth as tools to open packages.

  1. Veneers cannot prevent tooth decay.

A dental veneer may cover the front of a tooth, but it can’t seal up the whole thing. Bacteria and acid can still eat away at the exposed parts and sneaky underneath the veneer. This means that although your veneer itself won’t decay, you still need to carefully brush and floss the tooth it rests on.

If you’re sure that you can take great care of your teeth and veneers after getting this cosmetic procedure, then ask your local dentist for a consultation.

Posted on behalf of:
Pure Smiles Dentistry
2655 Dallas Highway Suite 510
Marietta, GA 30064
770.422.8776

May
6

What’s the Difference Between Lumineers and Regular Veneers?

Posted in Veneers

You’ve heard so much about how veneers can makeover a smile in one appointment. Countless celebrities and movie stars have glammed up their grins thanks to the help of veneers.

But what’s this about “Lumineers?”

Lumineers vs. Veneers – The Differences

Dental veneers are .5mm-thick sheets of porcelain crafted to fit over the front of a tooth. They replace an ultra-thin layer of enamel to create a smooth surface.

Lumineers are a brand of “no-prep” veneers. They essentially do the same thing, but they don’t actually replace an outer layer of enamel. Instead, they’re bonded directly over the tooth. They measure in at around .2mm – about the thickness of a contact lens.

Why Choose Lumineers?

Because Lumineers don’t require any tooth alteration, you can get them put on with zero-drilling and no numbing. They’re also reversible. If you ever decide that you want to go back to your original smile, your dentist can pop Lumineers off. This is not the case with traditional veneers which permanently alter your teeth.

There are other brands of no-prep veneers. Lumineers just happen to be well-known.

Are Lumineers Really Better?

Just because no-prep veneers are reversible doesn’t make them the best option. They might be thin, but you may notice the difference in bulk on your teeth. So much so that you could have problems closing your lips, biting into food, and even risk having a plaque-collecting “speed bump” near your gum line where the veneer ends. You need just the right smile to consider this option.

It’s not to say that either regular veneers or Lumineers are better. It simply depends on what your unique smile needs are. Ask a cosmetic dentist in your area which method will help you reach your goal.

Posted on behalf of:
Greencastle Dental
195 Greencastle Road
Tyrone, GA 30290
(770) 486-5585

Mar
6

6 Ways Dental Veneers Will Perfect Your Smile

Posted in Veneers

Celebrities, actors, and many others in the spotlight have gorgeous smiles. It’s not that they were born with teeth any better than ours – they’ve just had a lot of little imperfections covered up.

Often, this is all thanks to dental veneers.

Here’s how porcelain veneers could work wonders for you, as well:

  1. Close Gaps

By making the veneers just a little bigger than the teeth, your dentist can span a considerable gap between teeth.

This function of veneers makes them a potential alternative to braces.

  1. Whiten Teeth Instantly

Stubborn stain that won’t go away with bleaching can be masked over with a porcelain veneer.

  1. Cover Up Chipped Teeth

If you’re tired of a chip in your tooth making you look childish or unprofessional, then get it fixed with a veneer (which is less invasive than a crown.)

  1. Even Out Your Smile

Can’t shake the feeling that one tooth is just a tiny bit longer than the others?

A veneer can erase even the smallest irregularities and create a uniform smile line.

  1. Smooth Enamel

Rough tooth surfaces tend to trap a lot of stain. It goes without saying that your tongue can’t seem to stay away from the odd texture! You’ll feel a lot better about your smile with a smoother surface created by veneers.

  1. Hide Old Fillings

Sick of a patchwork of stained, old, tooth-colored fillings that show on your front teeth? Many times, restoring those teeth with dental crowns is the best option. But you never know; your dentist may find that the fillings are small enough to be covered over by veneers.

Schedule a smile consultation with your local dentist to find out whether veneers are right for you.

Posted on behalf of:
Bayshore Dental Center
810 W Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd #2900
Seffner, FL 33584
(813) 330-2006

Jan
10

Minimize the Effects of Acid Erosion on Your Tooth Enamel

Posted in Veneers

Acids attack tooth enamel every time you eat. Carbohydrates that enter your mouth fuel bacteria that produce even more acid. With this steady chemical erosion persisting over time, your tooth enamel can wear out to the point that your teeth get sensitive and/or develop cavities.

How do you counter the effects? Try the following five tips.

  1. Drink Lots Of Water

It’s impossible to avoid virtually every form of acid in your diet. A lot of acidic foods are healthy for you. These include:

  • Oranges, lemons, and other citrus fruits
  • Strawberries
  • Tomatoes

If you accompany these foods with a glass of water, you can rinse away acid so it doesn’t sit on your teeth too long.

  1. Brush After Meals

Don’t brush right after you eat. You could wind up just spreading all that acid around. Wait about 20-30 minutes after your meal and then brush with a fluoride toothpaste.

  1. Add Basic Foods

Food items that range on the opposite end of the pH spectrum could help strengthen enamel. Eat plenty of:

  • Dairy products
  • Eggs
  • Nuts
  • Oatmeal
  • Bananas
  • Melons
  1. Chew Sugar-Free Gum

Chewing gum stimulates the saliva flow that’s crucial to cleansing teeth and re-mineralizing enamel. Choose a brand that contains xylitol, a sugar substitute that helps prevent decay.

  1. Visit The Dentist

Your dentist has the tools necessary for examining your enamel and checking it for weakness. If your teeth could use an extra line of defense, then a fluoride treatment, porcelain veneers, or dental sealants may be in order.

Contact your dentist today to learn more about how to protect your enamel from acids in your diet.

Posted on behalf of:
Embrace Dental Care
8544 US-42, #500
Florence, KY 41042
(859) 371-4000

Oct
16

Enamel Erosion: Do You Know the Signs?

Posted in Veneers

Enamel wear happens slowly and almost imperceptibly. Yet its consequences are too serious to ignore. Despite tooth enamel being the toughest substance in your body, it can rapidly disappear thanks to a few of your favorite foods.

Some common contributors to worn enamel include:

  • Citrus fruits
  • Juice
  • Soda
  • Sports drinks
  • Sweets
  • Simple carbs (think junk food)
  • Aggressive tooth brushing
  • Teeth grinding habit
  • Stomach acids (frequent vomiting or acid reflux)

Here’s what to look for if you think your enamel might be in danger.

Yellowing Teeth

Darkening teeth are often a sign of staining. But a distinct yellow hue can indicate that the enamel has thinned out to reveal more of the dark dentin. You may notice isolated yellow spots in areas exposed to the heaviest wear.

Increased Sensitivity

As you lose enamel, your teeth lose the insulating layer that protects the nerve chamber. Teeth usually become sensitive after losing some enamel.

Flattened Chewing Surfaces

Teeth typically have a variety of bumps and ridges. But if they take on a squared-off look, that means they’re grinding too much against their opposing neighbors.

Translucent Edges

As enamel thins out, the chewing edges of your front teeth may start to look a little clear or bluish. This enamel is very brittle.

White Spots

Also known as areas of decalcification, white spots are very prone to developing decay since the enamel has lost so much strength there. These chalky patches are not reversible and actually need extra protection against cavities.

Treatment Options

Fortunately, there are various treatment options for treating teeth damaged by tooth enamel erosion including bonding, porcelain veneers and crowns.

Plan a smile consultation with your local dentist to find out what you should do to prevent further loss of tooth enamel and to repair teeth with eroded tooth enamel.

Posted on behalf of:
Atlantic Dental Partners
729 Centre St
Jamaica Plain, MA 02130
(617) 390-8484

Oct
8

Not Ready to Commit to Veneers? Try Lumineers

Posted in Veneers

Like many other people, you may find yourself hiding your teeth behind your a closed-lipped smile.

Are you ashamed of your teeth? Have you ever wished you could just cover them up?

With the help of dental veneers, you can do just that. Veneers are commonly made of porcelain and they slip right over your front teeth to create a new look.

But, getting veneers is quite the commitment. Your tooth enamel has to be adjusted and prepared so it can fit a new porcelain “glove” without making your teeth feel bulky. If your veneers pop off or get damaged, you’ll have to get them replaced.

Fortunately, Lumineers® is a brand of no-prep veneers that typically eliminates the need for:

  • Numbing shots
  • Enamel prepping and reshaping
  • Temporary veneers

Your Certified Lumineers® Dentist will simply take a mold of your teeth as they are and send it off to a Lumineers® lab. You’ll get back a complete set of all the veneers you need at the same time. After using just a dab of bonding agent on your teeth, your dentist will place your finished restorations. That’s it!

Lumineers® can get away with such little work because they are ultra-thin. They’re so lightweight that you’ll hardly notice them on your teeth. When your dentist places your Lumineers®, they will be carefully adjusted so that they can’t easily chip off.

The best part about Lumineers®? Even though they’ll give you a killer smile in an instant, you can have them removed anytime you wish to go back to your original smile without needing to replace them with something else.

To find out whether Lumineers® are right for you, schedule a smile consultation with your dentist.

Posted on behalf of:
Park Slope Dental Arts
506 3rd St
Brooklyn, NY 11215
(718) 962-0300

Sep
22

Which Should You Get, a Cap or Veneer?

Posted in Veneers

That front tooth is bothering you, again. Just when you think you’ve forgotten about it, you catch a glimpse of your teeth in the mirror.

Whatever your complaint may be, you are not alone. Many people live in fear of having their photo taken due to having a tooth they’re embarrassed by.

But each year, many people take their dental fate into their own hands.

Dental crowns and veneers have proven to be the perfect options for covering up less-than-perfect teeth. What are the differences between these two restorative techniques? And which is right for you?

Crowns vs. Veneers

Dental crowns are often made from metal, porcelain, or a combination. The cap covers the entire tooth like a snug winter mitten on a hand. Crowns are load-bearing and thus meant to improve the strength of a tooth.

Veneers, on the other hand, could be likened more to a potholder rather than a full mitten. Just as you only need a little fabric to shield your hand from hot elements, a veneer provides only partial coverage for the front of a tooth. Placed over the visible “smile” surface of upper front teeth, veneers are porcelain shells that improve the appearance of enamel.

What Your Tooth Needs

For a front tooth that only needs some cosmetic enhancement, you could go either way. If that tooth has significant structural damage or decay or experiences a lot of bite force, then a crown is the secure option.

But if your tooth doesn’t need total reinforcement, then a conservative and lightweight veneer may be all you need.

To find out which option is most effective for restoring your tooth, contact your local dental office.

Posted on behalf of:
Dentistry of Highland Village
3651 Weslayan St. #208
Houston, TX 77027
(713) 360-7700

Jul
18

Do You Need Dental Veneers?

Posted in Veneers

Are you happy with the way your smile looks?

Like most other people, you probably would make a few changes, if you could.

Do you want teeth that are:

  • Brighter
  • Straighter
  • Smoother
  • More even?

Dental veneers could be just what you’ve been looking for.

What Dental Veneers Do

Veneers are traditionally made from porcelain, but they also come in a slimmer plastic-like version. They’re made as thin as possible so they can neatly fit over the visible portion of your upper front teeth.

Your dentist will need to remove a little of the enamel from the front of your tooth so that the veneers can easily fit. Once your permanent veneers are in place, it’s not coming off. Gently brush and floss around your veneer as you would for any tooth.

Qualify For Veneers

Are veneers right for your smile?

Your teeth should be fully developed and healthy before you can get veneers. A veneer is not a deep restorative treatment, so if you have decay on your tooth, that should be treated first.

Not all problems can be patched up with veneers. For example, if you have a big gap between your teeth, closing it with large veneers will only weaken them. Not to mention, you’ll probably have a bucktoothed look.

Visit your dentist to find out whether veneers could be effective in improving your smile.

Why Choose Veneers?

Even though dental veneers are cosmetic treatments, they can make a big impact on your quality of life. Smoothing out your smile with these delicate porcelain shells could do wonders for your self-respect and confidence levels! They’re definitely worth a try.

Contact your dentist to find out more about the benefits of this cosmetic treatment.

Posted on behalf of:
Converse Dentistry
6634 Binz-Engleman Rd #109
Converse, TX 78109
(210) 960-8204

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