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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Home vs Dentist Teeth Whitening

The main differences are:

•Strength of bleaching agent. For starters, over-the-counter home use products and dentist-supervised at-home products usually contain a lower strength-bleaching agent (from 10% carbamide peroxide-which is equivalent to about 3 percent hydrogen peroxide ? up to 22% carbamide peroxide). In-office, professionally applied tooth whitening products mount vernon contain hydrogen peroxide in concentrations ranging from 15 to 43 percent.

•Mouthpiece trays. With dentist-supervised at-home bleaching products, your dentist will take an impression of your teeth and make a mouthpiece tray that is customized to exactly fit your teeth. This customization allows for maximum contact between the whitening gel, which is applied to the mouthpiece tray, and the teeth. A custom-made tray also minimizing the gel's contact with gum tissue. Over-the-counter whitening products do contain a mouthpiece tray, but the "one-size-fits-all" approach means that the fit will not be exact. Ill-fitting trays can irritate the gum and soft tissue by allowing more bleaching gel to seep onto these tissues. With in-office procedures, the bleaching agent is applied directly to the teeth.

•Additional protective measures teeth whitening Pennsylvania. In the office setting, your dentist will apply either a gel to the gum tissue or use a rubber shield (which slides over the teeth) prior to treatment to protect your gums and oral cavity from the effects of the bleaching. Over-the-counter products don't provide these extra protective measures.

•Speed of the bleaching process Mount Vernon. Dentist-supervised at-home bleaching and over-the-counter bleaching products typically need to be applied every day for 1 or 2 hours or every overnight for up to 4 weeks. In-office bleaching provides the quickest and most effective way to whiten teeth. With in-office bleaching, the whitening product is applied directly to the teeth. These products can be used in combination with heat, a special light, and/or a laser. The light and/or heat accelerate the whitening process. Results are seen in only 1, 30- to 60-minute treatment. To achieve dramatic results, however, several appointments are usually needed. With laser-enhanced bleaching, however, dramatic results can be seen after the first treatment.

Whitening Toothpaste, Strips, and Gels

Whitening Toothpastes Mount Vernon: All toothpastes help remove surface stains through the action of mild abrasives. Some whitening toothpastes contain gentle polishing or chemical agents that provide additional stain removal effectiveness. Whitening toothpastes can help remove surface stains only and do not contain bleach; over-the-counter and professional whitening products contain hydrogen peroxide (a bleaching substance) that helps remove stains on the tooth surface as well as stains deep in the tooth. None of the home use whitening toothpastes can come even close to producing the bleaching effect you get from your dentist's office. Whitening toothpastes can lighten your tooth's color by about one shade. In contrast, light-activated whitening conducted in your dentist's office can make your teeth three to eight shades lighter.

Whitening Strips and Whitening Gels Pennsylvania:

•Whitening gels are clear, peroxide-based gels applied with a small brush directly to the surface of your teeth. Instructions generally call for twice a day application for 14 days. Initial results are seen in a few days and final results are sustained for about 4 months. The retail cost for this product is about $15 for a 14-day treatment.

•Whitening strips are very thin, virtually invisible strips that are coated with a peroxide-based whitening gel. The strips are applied twice daily for 30 minutes for 14 days. Initial results are seen in a few days and final results are sustained for about 4 months. The retail cost for this product ranges from $10 to $55 for a 14-day treatment.

Both of these products contain peroxide in a concentration that is much lower than the peroxide-based products that are used in your dentist's office. Although some teeth lightening will be achieved, the degree of whitening is much lower than results achieved with in-office or dentist-supervised whitening systems. Additionally, use of over-the-counter products do not benefit from the close supervision of your dentist ? to determine what whitening process may be best for you, to check on the progress of the teeth whitening process and look for signs of gum irritation. On the positive, the over-the-counter gels and strips are considerably less expense (ranging from $10 to about $55) than the top-of-the line in-office whitening procedures Mount Vernon, which can cost nearly $800.

Teeth Whitening, An Intorduction

Teeth whitening Mount Vernon is ideal for patients who have healthy, unrestored teeth (no fillings) and healthy gums who would like a brighter smile. Patients with yellow tones to their teeth respond best. But this cosmetic procedure is not recommended for everyone.

Teeth whitening Mount Vernon is not recommended or will be less successful in the following circumstances:

•Age and pregnancy issues. Bleaching is not recommended in children under the age of 16. This is because the pulp chamber, or nerve of the tooth, is enlarged until this age. Teeth whitening under this condition could irritate the pulp or cause it to become sensitive. Teeth whitening is also not recommended in pregnant or lactating women.

•Sensitive teeth and allergies to products. Individuals with sensitive teeth and gums, receding gums and/or defective restorations should consult with their dentist prior to using a tooth whitening system. Anyone allergic to peroxide (the whitening agent) should not use a bleaching product.

•Gum disease, worn enamel, cavities, and exposed roots. Individuals with gum disease or teeth with worn enamel are generally discouraged from undergoing a tooth whitening procedure. Cavities need to be treated before undergoing any whitening procedure. This is because the whitening solutions penetrate into any existing decay and the inner areas of the tooth, which can cause sensitivity. Also, whitening procedures will not work on exposed tooth roots because roots do not have an enamel layer.

•Fillings, crowns and other restorations. Tooth-colored fillings and resin composite materials used in dental restorations (crowns, veneers, bonding, bridges) do not whiten. Therefore, using a whitening agent Mount Vernon on teeth that do and do not contain restorations will results in uneven whitening-in this case, making the teeth without restorations appear lighter than those with restorations. Any whitening procedure should be done prior to the placement of composite fillings, bonding, veneers, crowns, dentures, or porcelain restorations in order to best match the degree of whitening to your new tooth color. A minimum of 2 weeks following a whitening procedure should be allowed before crowns, bondings, or veneers are completed.

Monday, March 1, 2010

What's the Cost of a Smile?

Cosmetic changes to your smile can be a little as $125 for bonding to repair a chip, to $10,000 for porcelain veneers, to $35,000 and up for full mouth rehabilitation. Clearly, this is an investment - not something to be done on a whim.

Many people who know they can benefit from cosmetic dentistry put it off because they are concerned about the cost. A fair concern, but one that is easily addressed.

First, consider that your insurance may be able to cover some of the cost of your treatment plan. While dental benefits are notoriously small (typically no more than $2,000 per year), and don't usually cover elective procedures, it is possible that some of your work will be covered. Ask your dentist's office team to help you maximize your benefits.

After that option has been exhausted, your dentist will likely offer several payment options. Cash is always welcome, but so are credit cards. Some offices allow you to pay for the treatment in thirds, billing your credit card once a month.

If your treatment plan is larger, say over $5,000, you may wish to finance the fee. You can look into a personal loan with your own bank, or a home equity loan, but most dental offices use a third party billing service.

The office manager will help you figure out several payment plans that will fit your budget, allowing you to extend the payments for a year (often with no interest if paid in full within 12 months!) or longer.

Once you complete a credit application, the office manager will contact the financing company to see if you are approved. Once approved, you sign an agreement, and you're home free! Your new smile can now begin!

Many patients wonder if it's worth it to finance a new smile. It all depends on what is most important to you. If your existing smile has been holding you back in life, it's definitely worth it. Signs that your smile has had a negative impact on your life include:

Lack of career advancement - you may not display the confidence you need to get noticed at work, or to close those important deals.

Few friends - It's hard to be friends with someone who has a poor self image. Often the lack of a smile will keep you from approaching new people or joining a group.

No romance - Think about what first attracts you to a romantic partner. Are they friendly, approachable, and attractive? A smile conveys all those things. If you don't feel great about flashing a grin, it's going to be a lot harder to get their attention.

Life is for living - so let the world know how happy you are by smiling wide! And know that this is an investment in more than just teeth. It's an investment in you.

Benefits of Laser Dental Treatment

If you’re one of the thousands of people who avoid the dentist because of the pain involved, sedation dentistry isn’t your only option. Laser dental treatments are an innovative procedure that use light energy to sterilize the affected area and close off the blood vessels before your dentist begins the work. This means you can undergo your treatment without any local anesthesia, and your dental visit can be much shorter than usual.

Lasers have been used as part of dental treatments since the 1960s, but have become increasingly more effective in recent years with technological advancements that can help with many types of oral surgery, root canals, crown lengthening and even bone shaping. Some of the key benefits of laser dental treatments include:

Faster healing process
Decreased risk of infection
Fewer follow up dental appointments
Faster dental procedure
Decreased sensitivity in the treatment site
No noise involved – a more pleasant alternative to drilling
Limited or no need for anesthesia

Laser dentistry is also more precise, and some dentists believe it is more effective than conventional treatments. Because the dentist has more control over the device, they can hone in on only the damaged tissue and prevent additional damage to the surrounding tissues as they work.

Are You a Good Candidate for Laser Dentistry?
Laser dental treatments are ideal for individuals who become very anxious or nervous in the dentist’s chair, and because it speeds up the healing process, it may also reduce the need to return to the dentist for additional appointments. They can also be used for teeth whitening, treating cold sores, and getting rid of a gummy smile.

Some of the most common procedures used for laser dentistry include:

Cavity detection
Dental fillings and tooth preparation
Tooth sensitivity treatments – the lasers can be used to seal tubules that are causing hot or cold tooth sensitivity
Crown lengthening and gum reshaping

Gummy smile correction – reshaping the gum tissue so that only a part of the tooth is exposed

Removal of soft tissue folds – a painless way to get rid of excess tissue that may have developed over the teeth and gums

Correction of restricted or tight frenulum – some people have limited tongue movement, and the laser can help to loosen the muscle and increase range of motion for better movement. This can also be an effective treatment for people with a speech impediment

Cold sores – can speed up the healing time associated with cold sores and help to reduce pain around the affected issues

Benign tumors – any tumors that have formed in the sides of the cheeks, lips and gums can be removed without incisions using laser dentistry procedures

Teeth whitening – lasers can help with the bleaching process and improve the appearance of the soft tissues around the teeth

Sleep apnea – people who are suffering from tissue overgrowth in the throat and have sleep apnea can benefit from a laser treatment that reshapes the throat and makes it easier for the patient to breathe

Treatment for Gum Disease

Bad breath and bleeding gums are often associated with periodontal disease, otherwise known as gum disease. Periodontal disease occurs when the pockets around the gum tissue begins to widen and gums begin to recede. As the pockets get deeper, the risk of bacterial infection increases and the gums continue to wear down over time. The good news is that periodontal disease can be treated with several dentistry procedures. If you’ve been diagnosed with gum disease, here’s what you need to know about your treatment options:

Dental Treatments for Periodontal Disease

Periodontists may sue a combination of minimally-invasive procedures and surgery to treat gum disease, and your treatment plan will depend on the amount of time that has passed since your last root planning and cleaning procedure, and the extent of the damage. Some of the most commonly used dental procedures for gum disease include:

Pocket Reduction Procedures

Gum Regenerative Procedures

When you are pursuing treatment for gum disease, the first step involves measuring the depth of the pockets around your teeth. The dentist or hygienist will use a special measuring tool to determine how deep the pockets are, and what level of tartar deposits are embedded between the teeth and gums. In order to bring your teeth and gums back to a healthy state, the dentist will need to scrape away the tartar deposits and massage the gums back in place so that they can reattach to the tartar-free bone.

Over time, the gums will begin to tighten around the teeth and reduce the risk of bacteria getting into the bone. Reduced pockets and daily oral hygiene can help prevent serious health problems associated with gum disease, and also ensure you have a healthier smile.

Laser Dental Treatments for Gum Disease
Many cosmetic dentists and periodontists now use laser technologies to perform scaling and root planning procedures. Some research shows that lasers can improve results and reduce the risk of extensive tissue damage to the gums during the scaling and root planning process. When the right wavelength of laser energy is used on the patient during periodontal therapy, there may be less swelling, discomfort and bleeding. In most cases, the insurance company will cover the costs of the treatment for laser dental treatments in the same way as a non-laser treatment.

Cosmetic Procedures for Treating Periodontal Disease

In addition to the corrective and regenerative procedures available for treating gum disease, a periodontist may recommend a set of cosmetic procedures to enhance your smile and improve the functioning of the teeth and gums. Common cosmetic procedures for those who are being treated for gum disease include:

Ridge Augmentation
Soft Tissue Grafting
Crown Lengthening

If you have lost a tooth because of excessively receding gums or periodontal disease, you may also be referred to a cosmetic dentist for dental implants. Dental implants help to restore your smile and can replace one or more teeth without affecting the bordering teeth. You can choose from endosteal implants (in the bone) or subperiosteal (on the bone) depending on the health of your gums and the quality of the existing teeth.

Learn more about the latest dental treatments in our information guide, or consult with a cosmetic dentist in your area to find out if you are a good candidate for treatments for gum disease.