Every routine check-up at our Manhattan Beach, CA Dentist office includes an oral cancer screening and visual inspection of the tissues of your mouth. The purpose of this screening for oral cancer is to visually inspect the tissues of your mouth to look for abnormalities and potentially cancerous or pre-cancerous tissues.
It is important to keep a regular schedule of checkups and cleanings with your dentist because abnormal tissue that may be cancerous may appear to be completely normal to the untrained eye. For instance, what appears to be a normal white spot may be identified by your dental health team as pre-cancerous. There are other early signs of oral cancer that your dentist will look for including red spots, sores, a change in your bite, or a change in the color of the oral tissues.
Oral cancer rates are, unfortunately, increasing among patients with no known risk factors such as heavy drinking, smoking, or family history. This fact makes it more critical than ever to have a screening for oral cancer at least once a year. Contact the Manhattan Beach, CA Dentist today to schedule your next dental exam and oral cancer screening.
What causes dental acid erosion?
Our tooth enamel protects the interior portion of our teeth and is constantly subject to damage from acidic food and drinks. Young children and adolescents tend to consume large quantities of fruit juices and other acidic beverages like energy drinks, so they are particularly vulnerable to dental erosion. Orange and apple juice may be healthy for the body but contain high levels of acid that will cause tooth enamel to erode when consumed in large quantities. Other drinks known to cause dental erosion are carbonated cola drinks and wine.
What are the symptoms of dental erosion?
You may have already experienced dental erosion without being aware of it. Some symptoms to look for are:
- Yellowing of teeth: The acid that we consume in certain food and drinks wears away healthy dental enamel, allowing underlying yellowish dentin becomes more noticeable.
- Increased sensitivity: Healthy dental enamel is a very hard substance that protects underlying tooth structure. As this enamel wears away, you may experience increased sensitivity to hot and cold foods or when visiting your dentist.
- Changes in the shape of your teeth: Since the acid in certain foods and drinks eats away at healthy tooth enamel, the shape of your teeth can appear to change or gaps may start to form between teeth.
- Dental fillings become more noticeable: Since dental fillings are fashioned from man-made materials, they will not be impacted to the same extent as dental enamel. This causes fillings to become more noticeable as surrounding dental enamel deteriorates.
If you are concerned about the appearance of your teeth, the Manhattan Beach Cosmetic Dentistry office provides cosmetic alternatives like porcelain veneers that beautifully disguise the effects of dental erosion. Contact our office for a free consultation so we can explain the best ways for you to preserve healthy tooth enamel and cosmetically correct teeth that may already be damaged.
How Do Invisalign Clear Braces Work?
We start by taking impressions of your mouth so that we can create a clear BPA-free plastic aligner. This aligner is designed to fit your teeth like a mouth guard. Unlike a mouth guard, however, the Invisalign aligner is designed to gently move your teeth into the proper position.
Approximately every two weeks you remove the current aligner and move to the next set that has been carefully crafted to shift your teeth gently to the next stage in the straightening process. You will make visits to our cosmetic dentist office about every six weeks so we can check on your progress.
But the beauty of Invisalign is that you will see the improvement every time you step up to a new set of aligners. It usually takes about a year for Invisalign aligners to gradually shift your teeth to achieve a straight and beautiful smile.
Invisalign aligners correct nearly any adjustment issue you may have with your teeth. The Manhattan Beach, CA Cosmetic Dentist is an approved Invisalign provider, and patients choose the system to correct issues like the following:
- Crooked teeth
- Spaces/gaps in teeth
Discreet: Invisalign aligners are nearly invisible. The casual observer will not notice any difference when you’re wearing your aligner.
Removable: You can remove your aligners when you eat, brush your teeth, or any other time that is necessary.
Comfortable: Since Invisalign aligners are made of a soft, flexible material, they are much less likely to create any irritation to your mouth.
The Invisalign system is a perfect choice to fit into your busy lifestyle while providing the straight, beautiful smile you’ve always dreamed of.
What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
OSA occurs when a patient momentarily stops breathing or has difficulty breathing during sleep. This is a result of a blocked airway caused by soft oral tissue at the back of the throat. This blocked air passage often causes the patient to snore and awaken several times during the night just so they can start breathing normally again.
Who is at Risk for Developing OSA?
It is important to learn about the factors that create a risk for Obstructive Sleep Apnea so that you can inform your dentist. Here are a few of the more commonly known factors that put someone at risk for developing OSA:
- Men are more prone to suffer from sleep apnea than women
- Overweight patients have a greater likelihood of developing sleep apnea
- Allergy patients are at greater risk of developing obstructive sleep apnea
- A history of sleep apnea in your family also increases the risk of developing it yourself
- A traumatic injury to the nose puts you at greater risk of developing sleep apnea
These are just a few of the more common risk factors for a person to develop sleep apnea. But it is by no means a complete list. The truth is that anyone can develop sleep apnea.
If your partner complains about your disruptive snoring or you find that you suddenly start waking up frequently during the night, contact the Manhattan Beach Sleep Apnea Dentist to discuss the problem and determine if a diagnosis of OSA is likely. There are options available to you so that you can safeguard your health, improve your relationship and get a good night’s sleep.
How is the Six Months Smiles treatment different from Invisalign?
Both provide discreet options for straightening teeth. The main difference is that the Six Month Smiles treatment uses clear wire and tooth-colored brackets to blend with your natural teeth. Invisalign aligners are made of clear plastic resin and are virtually invisible when worn. Many adults and teenage patients are comfortable with either of these options. But it really depends on the individual needs and desired goal of the treatment.
Why is Six Month Smiles Treatment finished more quickly than regular braces?
The reason that Six Month Smiles braces can achieve great results in such a short time is that we only treat the teeth that show when you smile. Your front teeth can be aligned more quickly than your back teeth. The treatment uses very light and safe forces to move teeth at the same rate as traditional braces. The teeth are not being moved faster, but the treatment is completed sooner.
Six Month Smiles braces placed by the Cosmetic Dentist Manhattan Beach do not have the goal of altering the bite of your back teeth, so the treatment stops once the front teeth are positioned in a cosmetically pleasing arrangement. Traditional braces take longer because there is an additional goal of perfecting the bite in your back teeth.
Contact our office for a free consultation if you’re interested in learning more about either Six Month Smiles or Invisalign clear braces. We will be happy to discuss your needs and the treatment option we think may work best for your specific needs.
Many people suffer from dental anxiety and avoid treatment because they just can't overcome that anxiety. Recently we had a new patient at our Sedation Dentistry Manhattan Beach CA office with this very problem. Brad came to us expressing his fear of dental procedures and dentists in general. I took the time to assure him that he was not alone in experiencing these fears and that it was a very common problem. We then discussed his history in an effort to find out why he was so fearful.
As talked about his experiences in the past he related a story of negative childhood experiences with a dentist he considered to be less than compassionate in his approach to treatment. Brad became more relaxed as we talked, and eventually he lost the “deer in the headlights” look he had when he first came into the practice. Making patients feel at ease with the staff and surroundings is our goal and the first step to controlling and eliminating these fears. Brad was responding positively to having his own feelings taken into account.
We discussed how Sedation Dentistry provides many options for fearful patients. Sedation treatments such as Inhalation therapy (laughing gas) and oral conscious sedation can provide an anxiety-free experience from beginning to end. There are many factors to take into account when selecting the most appropriate sedation method, and everyone reacts differently to different types of sedation.
At the Sedation Dentistry Manhattan Beach CA office we match the needs of the patient with the correct sedation therapy. Brad also understood that delaying dental treatment because of his fears would ultimately lead to neglected oral care and long-term problems that would just become more difficult and costly to correct.
Brad was happy to learn that a controlled and regulated approach to the chosen level of sedation would allow my staff and I to monitor his comfort throughout the duration of his treatment, ensuring that the post-procedure experience would leave him feeling refreshed and renewed. Using a compassionate and understanding approach helped Brad to finally find a way to feel confident and happy about taking positive steps to ensure his oral health.
One of the most common complaints that we hear from dental patients is that their teeth are starting to look dark, stained, or dull. Dental discoloration can be the result of any number of issues. Environmental stains result from consuming discoloring foods or drinks, such as wine, cola, coffee, and tea. Structural changes in the tooth can also cause teeth to look darker. Over time the surface enamel of your teeth can thin, allowing more of the underlying yellowish dentin to show through.
Patients suffering from dental staining can benefit greatly from professional teeth whitening treatments. These treatments bleach dental enamel, lighten stains and refresh the appearance of teeth. If teeth whitening treatments are not successful for you, you may find that dental veneers are effective. Veneers completely cover the enamel surface, so they can mask even the darkest teeth.
Another common complaint from patients is that their teeth are crooked, misaligned, or uneven. Dental veneers can give you the appearance of a straight, seamless smile in only a few appointments. Veneers are shaped and shaded to fit your smile, so they are sure to look natural and enhance your overall appearance.
Thanks to advances in cosmetic dentistry, there are solutions for common dental problems that are easily attainable. If you’re unhappy with the appearance of your smile, contact our Manhattan Beach, CA Cosmetic Dentist office. We will be happy to consult with you so that we can provide treatment options and help you decide which is best for you.
The technique you use when brushing has a great impact on the effectiveness of your daily oral hygiene routine. So let’s review the proper technique for brushing teeth.
How to Brush Properly
- Wet your toothbrush and apply a peanut-sized strip of toothpaste (pea-sized for children). Using too much toothpaste can be harmful for children because they are more likely to swallow it and ingest fluoride. Too much fluoride in the system can cause problems.
- Begin with your upper left molars (in the back) by placing the toothbrush on the outer surface of the tooth. Tilt your brush at a 45 degree angle towards your gums and press lightly to bend the bristles a bit. Do not press too hard or you may damage the enamel on the surface of your tooth, resulting in sensitivity and/or discoloration. Your brush head should cover approximately 2-3 teeth at a time.
- Move your brush across your teeth in a slightly circular motion. Your strokes should be about the length of one tooth and you should spend about 10-15 seconds in one spot.
- Gradually work your way around to the front teeth and continue on to the other side of your mouth. Then switch to the bottom teeth and do the same thing.
- Once you have finished cleaning the front surfaces of your teeth, move on to the inside surfaces of the upper and lower molars and premolars.
- To clean the inside surface of your front teeth, hold the brush perpendicular to the gum line and use a flicking motion to wipe away plaque.
- Don't forget to brush the biting surface of your molars. This will prevent plaque and bacteria from causing cavities by growing inside the crevices in your teeth.
- Finally, brush your tongue and the inside of your cheeks, and then rinse with water.
Following these simple steps will help you to maintain healthy, clean teeth between professional cleanings. Remember to schedule regular professional cleanings with the Manhattan Beach Dentist to really optimize your oral health.
A common cause of teeth discoloration is dental staining. This can be a result of the foods you eat, drinks you consume, and tobacco use. Beverages like coffee, tea, and cola can darken and stain teeth over time. Dark berries and chocolate may also cause discoloration. However, tobacco use is a primary contributor to cosmetic dental problems.
As if this isn't enough, natural changes to tooth enamel as we age can make teeth appear dark and dull. As children our teeth are naturally white and bright. Underneath this pristine white tooth enamel is a yellowish layer called dentin. When you are young, the dental enamel is strong and completely masks the dentin. But as we age this enamel just naturally wears with age. Not only does it become thinner but it also becomes more porous. The porous nature of the enamel begins to attract microscopic food particles. On top of that the thinning of the enamel makes the yellow dentin underneath more noticeable.
Even if you are diligent about taking care of your teeth, you will likely experience these changes since they are just a by-product of the aging process. But this does not mean that you are destined to go through life with a smile that gets duller and more yellow with age. The Manhattan Beach General Cosmetic Dentist offers effective cosmetic treatments that will whiten dental enamel quickly and easily.
Teeth whitening is painless, and patients see results after only one or two sessions. If you have dental stains that are resistant to traditional whitening methods you may benefit from dental Lumineers. Lumineers are thin layers of porcelain that are placed directly over dental enamel. Consequently, they can give patients the white teeth they want regardless of the cosmetic problem.
You don’t have to live with a smile that is less than dazzling even though some tooth discoloration is natural. If you’re concerned about the impact the aging process is having on your smile, contact our office for a free consultation. We will be happy to work with you to find the cosmetic treatment that is best for you.
What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
OSA is a condition in which a patient stops breathing or experiences blocked breathing while sleeping. If you experience OSA, your airway becomes blocked by soft oral tissue as you sleep. As a result your airway is blocked and you more snore regularly. You may even momentarily wake up to “restart” your breathing.
Who can develop Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
There are risk factors for obstructive sleep apnea that are important to keep in mind. Here are some of the more common risks associated with OSA:
- Overweight patients are more likely to suffer from sleep apnea
- A family history of sleep apnea puts you at increased risk
- Men are at greater risk than women
- Allergy sufferers are more likely to have OSA
- You may be at risk for OSA if you’ve suffered trauma to your nose
These are some common risk factors that describe who can be at greater risk for developing sleep apnea, but it is not a complete list . The truth is that virtually anyone can develop obstructive sleep apnea. If you find that you’re snoring regularly or jolting awake in the middle of the night speak to the Manhattan Beach Sleep Apnea Dentist about the possibility of OSA. We are committed to finding a solution to the problem and helping you get the good night’s sleep you need.
- Manhattan Beach, CA Dentist Explains Importance of Routine Oral Cancer Screening
- Manhattan Beach Cosmetic Dentistry Office Describes Symptoms of Dental Erosion
- Manhattan Beach, CA Cosmetic Dentist Reviews Uses for Invisalign Clear Orthodontics
- Manhattan Beach Sleep Apnea Dentist Reviews Sleep Apnea Risks
- Cosmetic Dentist Manhattan Beach Explains Six Month Smile Clear Braces
- Office of Sedation Dentistry Manhattan Beach CA Discusses Options to Overcome Dental Fear
- Manhattan Beach, CA Cosmetic Dentist Discusses Treatments for Common Cosmetic Concerns
- Manhattan Beach Dentist Describes Proper Tooth Brushing Technique
- Manhattan Beach General Cosmetic Dentist Explains How the Aging Process Affects our Teeth
- Manhattan Beach Sleep Apnea Dentist Lists Risk Factors for Obstructive Sleep Apnea
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