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What Are the Most Common Cosmetic Dental Procedures?

Cosmetic Dental Procedures7 Most Common Cosmetic Dental Procedures

Having a pretty smile can give you a lot of advantages in life. Those who have lovely smiles are often perceived as confident people who are most likely to succeed in any endeavor.

A beautiful and healthy smile doesn’t happen naturally for a lot of people, though. Very few of us are are actually born with perfect teeth. The great thing about a beautiful smile is that even if the heavens didn’t bless you with a smile like Julia Roberts’, there are cosmetic dental procedures that can help you achieve it.

So what are the most common cosmetic dental procedures for those looking to improve their smile? A Laurel, MD dentist rounded up seven of them in a list below:

Dental veneers

These are the best solution for people who have weirdly shaped and chipped teeth, discoloration, and slight unevenness in the alignment of their teeth. Dental veneers can create that beautiful, sparkling Hollywood smile. Another advantage they come with is that they actually last a long time, meaning you get good value for your investment in your smile.

Composite White Fillings

These are the perfect way to conceal a hole or cavity in a tooth. The fillings are the color of your teeth so it’s hard to even tell that they’re there to prevent the cavity from getting worse and to hide tooth damage.

Teeth Whitening 

This is perhaps the most popular out of all the common dental procedures for a pretty smile. It eliminates tooth stains and restores that perfect pearly white color of teeth through a rather quick procedure.

Porcelain Crowns

These are used as a cover for damaged teeth starting at the gum line. It can protect damaged teeth and improve their shape, alignment and overall appearance.

Invisalign Braces 

These are also known as invisible braces. Instead of those obvious metal brackets and wires on your teeth, you get trays of clear aligners for the straightening effect. If you prefer to correct your crooked teeth alignment without anybody knowing, these are the most ideal braces to use.

Dental Implants

These can replace the teeth you have lost. It involves surgery, however, because implanted new teeth will look, feel and function like your own natural teeth.

Cosmetic Gum Surgery

This is often requested by people who feel like their gums are as big or as highly visible as their teeth. This quick procedure creates the right size of gums for a beautiful smile. It may seem painful, but it doesn’t hurt much (if at all), and healing doesn’t take a long time, according to the trusted dentist in Laurel MD.

How to Choose a Dental Care Provider

young man and woman in a dental examination at dentist

How to Choose a Dental Care Provider

Visiting the dentist regularly is a key component of taking care of your gums and teeth properly – and investing in your overall health as well. You may be diligent in practicing good dental hygiene. You may take pains to avoid sugary foods and beverages to avoid cavities. You may be vigilant in following all the recommended practices that protect your teeth’s health. But without the constant monitoring of a dental health professional, then there’s a huge chance that you may miss certain oral condition issues that can lead to serious consequences in the long run.

That’s why building a long-term relationship with your dentist will be beneficial for you. Working with someone who knows your health history and whom you feel comfortable with paves the way for your unique needs to be addressed more effectively.

But what if you’re moving to a new neighborhood and you have no idea which dental care provider to approach? What if your small children are already at an age when they need to be taken to the dental clinic on a more frequent basis? Or the relationship between you and your current dentist isn’t currently working out great for some reason?  

Then it’s time for you to find a new dentist. For best results, consider the following tips on how to choose a dental care provider.

Make a list of your preferences

Write down the characteristics and features you want to see in a dentist. For instance, if you have kids, then you may want to look for someone experienced working with families and who has the facility that‘s suitable for them.

Get to know the dentist

For quality dental care, you would want to choose a highly skilled, experienced and compassionate dentist. Find out about their background, specialty and track record. Check if they make it a point to keep up-to-date with the latest dental technology and solutions. Observe the staff as well – a courteous team can make a difference in your overall experience.   

Check the location

Choose a dentist in Laurel, MD with clinics that are located where it’s easily accessible for you and your family. The more convenient it is to go to the clinic, the better you can commit to your appointment schedule. Going to a dental facility close to your home or where you work will also make it easier for you to get assistance should you experience a dental emergency.

Inquire about rates and other arrangement relating to payments

Affordability is crucial in ensuring you can commit to your dental health care plan. During your search, don’t hesitate to ask about payment options and insurance coverage. A reputable clinic will be willing to take the time and sit down with you to discuss possible fee schedules that will be most suitable for you.

Oral Health Facts | All About Oral Health

Oral Health Facts Oral Health Facts | All About Oral Health the Moment You Go “Ah!”

People always say that if the eyes are the windows to your soul, then the mouth is the window to your body. A Columbia, MD dentist completely agrees with this and claims that he automatically knows what’s up with your oral health the instant you say “Ah!” No blood test, no biopsy – he just automatically knows.

So what is revealed to his discerning eye the moment you open your mouth? He’s listed oral health facts that you should know:

You flossed – But Only Before Your Appointment With Him, and Never Anytime Before That.

First of all, if there’s plaque and/or tartar, you clearly have not been flossing. Secondly, gums will look damaged if you floss right before the appointment – they become damaged because you wanted to make up for the months that you didn’t bother flossing, in a single go.

You Loved Your Binky or You Thumb-Sucked as a Kid.

According to the Columbia, MD dentist, the alignment of your teeth and your bite are tell-tale signs. Also, when he asks you to say certain words and you have an obvious lisp, this reinforces the conclusion right away.

You’re a Nervous Person Who Has the Tendency to Bite Your Nails.

Dentists don’t have to look at your chewed-up nails to detect this habit. Nail-biting causes wears and tears on teeth; patients who bite their nails often usually have front teeth that are completely leveled off because of the contact between the top and bottom teeth when you’re nibbling at your nails.

You’re Expecting a Little One 

Increased progesterone production during a woman’s pregnancy raises the risk of gingivitis. Some pregnant women develop dark red lumps on their gums, known as pregnancy tumors. There’s no need to worry about these tumors if you have them because they’re always benign and they go away after pregnancy. So, even if you’re not yet showing, your dentist will see these tumors and instantly know that you have a little one in the oven.

You’re Sick.

Another fact is that a different smell in your breath always indicates something and dentists know which smell is for diabetes, nasal drip, bronchitis, tonsil stone, and others.

You’re Suffering from Anorexia or Bulimia Nervosa.

People who have eating disorders, according to dentists, are very easy to identify due to the poor condition of their teeth. People with bulimia tend to exhibit a very distinct pattern of tooth wear – the erosion is concentrated on the tongue-side of the front teeth. Plus, it’s easy enough to see other signs that point to an eating disorder.

You Have Sinusitis.

The last of our oral health facts is if you’re complaining of severe jaw pains, swollen gums and toothaches, but there’s nothing wrong with your teeth when your dentist inspects your mouth, the problem is usually a sinus infection.

So don’t even think that you can fool your dentist by providing the best answers when asked because the state of your mouth will tell the truth. Dentists are not out to judge — they’re completely focused on restoring the good health of your mouth. As such, when they ask you how you go about oral care and other things, don’t hesitate to present the truth because you’ll be helping them help you the best they can.


How to Choose the Right Children’s Dentist

Children's DentistHow to Choose the Right Children’s Dentist

One of the responsibilities that parents face when it comes to ensuring their children’s overall health is taking the little ones to dentist for regular examinations and treatments (if necessary). It’s vital to teach children about proper dental hygiene habits early on so that they can learn how to take good care of their teeth and gums throughout their lives. With good oral health, children can speak and eat properly, they can flash brilliant smiles, and they feel greater confidence.

You will need to look for a good children’s dentist for the first time when your first child’s teeth have erupted or when you move to a new location. In either situation, deciding on a particular dental professional can be challenging because your child’s oral health is at stake.

Your best first step would be to ask people you know for their recommendations — relatives, friends, or acquaintances can point you to a children’s dentist that they like. Alternatively, you can search for dentists by zip code using the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry’s website, or with the search tool offered by the American Dental Association.

Once you’ve made a shortlist of children’s dentists that you would like to see, the only way to find out which one is perfect for your needs is to pay them all a visit and to evaluate and compare your experience with their services.

A Laurel, MD dentist recommends asking yourself the following questions so you can determine which dentist is best for your child:

Was the dental office comfortable, welcoming and properly set up to accommodate children?

Compared to regular dental offices, one that caters to children should have special provisions (like toys, books, music, games, TV shows or furniture) to keep the little patients engaged or distracted from procedures.

Did the dentist demonstrate care, patience and positive encouragement when interacting with your child?

The dentist must be especially compassionate, patient and knowledgeable in working with children to be effective in treating them.

Does the dentist answer your questions and provide plenty of information about your child’s dental condition and development, preventive measures for dental issues, and proper hygiene habits to observe at home?

Parents appreciate being told vital information that can help their child achieve better dental health.

Were the dentist and their staff friendly and helpful?

It’s essential for patients to feel that they are warmly attended to by the staff during each visit.

Was the staff able to explain how the office manages emergencies?

Parents want to be assured that their dentist will be able to provide the required care in the event of an emergency, especially during odd hours.

Was the visit a positive experience for your child?

Finally, it’s an important indicator that you’ve found the right dentist when your child feels comfortable during his visits and likes the dentist and staff.

If you are looking for a children’s dentist in Silver Spring, contact the friendly professionals are Nicholas Dental Care today!

Periodontal Disease Is Linked to Heart Attacks

Periodontal DiseasePeriodontal Disease Is Linked to Heart Attacks

If you need another reason to pay better attention to your oral health, here is one: Periodontal disease is linked to heart attacks, according to Dutch researchers.

Researchers from Holland’s Academic Centre for Dentistry Amsterdam, the country’s largest dental school, found a link between gum disease and heart attacks, stroke and severe chest pain. We have always known that there is a direct connection between oral health and the body. In a recent study published by the ADA experts explore how Periodontal disease is linked to heart attacks.

Research Shows 

For this particular study, the Dutch researchers examined the medical records of 174 individuals aged 35 years old and above in an effort to find the link between periodontal gum disease and atherosclerotic cardiovascular diseasesThe researchers discovered that around four percent of the patients included in the study who had periodontitis also had atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease.

Risk Factors 

Even when other risk factors for cardiovascular disease like smoking, high blood pressure and diabetes have been eliminated from the equation, patients with periodontitis were 59 percent more likely to have heart problems.

However, experts cannot yet prove the direct correlation between gum disease and heart problems. Researchers suggest that the link between heart problems and gum disease can be traced to chronic inflammation. According to the experts, the presence of infection and inflammation in the mouth can possibly contribute to heart problems. Additionally, researchers posit that gum disease can lead to heart disease by creating a condition of chronic infection. This, alongside bacteria, can adversely affect a person’s circulatory system, including the heart.

Heart Disease in the United States 

In the United States, heart disease ranks as one of the leading causes of death, accounting for 600,000 deaths annually. Periodontal disease, on the other hand, is the advanced stage of gum disease. In this condition, the gums are pulled away from the teeth, creating pockets. These pockets can then become infected. Apart from heart disease, gum disease has also been linked to other conditions, including dementia and skin disease.

Should this research conducted by Dutch experts be a cause of concern and alarm? Dentists believe that the correlation between periodontitis and heart disease is strong. However, when viewed against other risk factors, gum disease ranks relatively lower.

Nonetheless, the link between coronary disease and gum disease is there and you should take every precaution to prevent a medical issue that you can avoid. How do you prevent gum disease?


It’s all about mastering the basics. That includes brushing and flossing your teeth correctly and regularly. Using mouthwash can also effectively reduce plaque and eliminate food particles that brushing and flossing cannot. If you are at risk for gum disease, make sure that you consult your local Burtonsville dentist for advice and guidance.

Is Teeth Whitening Safe?

Teeth WhiteningIs Teeth Whitening Safe?

Is teeth whitening safe? Whether you are planning to use an over-the-counter product or considering an in-office treatment administered by your local dentist, it is crucial to learn about the safety of teeth whitening treatments.

It is also a good idea to gather a fair amount of knowledge on what causes dental stains over time and how different whitening products work.

Tooth Enamel

Tooth enamel gives your smile the white color you are familiar with. As you grow older, the enamel wears away and reveals the darker tissue of your teeth.

But apart from this, your teeth can become stained due to a variety of reasons. These include the use of tobacco products or consumption of dark liquids like soda and coffee. Other reasons you may see tooth stains can stem from tooth trauma, some types of medications, and bruxism or teeth grinding.

Whitening Options 

There are different teeth whitening options you can choose from. Professional in-office teeth whitening treatment, professionally supplied whitening kits, on-the-go whitening and over-the-counter treatments. The method of these treatments can be further classified into two types. The first type of product works by bleaching which removes both deep and surface stains. The other type of treatment, known as non-bleaching, uses chemical action to eliminate surface stains.

Now on to the initial question: Is teeth whitening safe?

A decade of research indicates that teeth whitening is safe. Many of the products available to the general public as well as the treatments administered by dental professionals have been deemed safe and have undergone rigorous trial and testing.

However, it is crucial to choose products that have been clinically proven and it is essential to first consult your local dentist and follow the instructions closely.

Teeth Whitening Sensitivity 

A few years ago, many patients reported increased sensitivity following an in-office treatment. This can be attributed to higher bleach concentrations. Today, the products used for this treatment have a lower amount of bleach concentration. Sensitivity may still occur but often lasts only up to 48 hours.

Overall, almost anyone can have his or her teeth whitened. However, there are some people who may be discouraged from undergoing teeth whitening. These include pregnant and breastfeeding women, and patients with dental issues like gum disease, sensitive teeth, cavities, tooth-colored crowns and dental works which can’t be bleached.
Additionally, before undergoing a treatment or using a product, it is crucial that you first consult your dentist. Your Burtonsville dentist is the best person to recommend which treatment or product best suits the condition of your teeth.

The Five Most Common Restorative Dentistry Procedures

Restorative DentistryThe Five Most Common Restorative Dentistry Procedures

Cavities, chipped, cracked, and lost teeth — all these issues already have quick and (relatively) affordable solutions in the form of restorative dentistry. With the different procedures available for this branch of dentistry, your teeth can look and feel like they used to. Also, if you wish to take things to the next level, restorative dentistry is often a good prelude to cosmetic dentistry procedures, which can really enhance your smile and improve your oral structure.

If you have any of the aforementioned dental woes, the following are the most common restorative dentistry procedures to consider.

Dental fillings

These are applied to teeth that have been treated for cavities. Dental fillings are made of a hard plastic material that bonds to the tooth. They are designed to cover the holes or seal cracks in your teeth. Dental fillings restore stability to your teeth and prevent further damage and pain. There are four kinds of fillings typically used by dentists: gold, amalgam, ceramic and tooth-colored composites. Among these four types of fillings, the last two options are the most aesthetically appealing; they can even be used for chipped or worn front teeth.

Air abrasion and Micro Dentistry

This procedure uses air abrasion technology to get rid of small cavities without removing healthy tooth enamel. After abrasion, white fillings are applied to teeth to restore appearance of your teeth.

Dental Bridge

This is a device anchored to neighboring teeth (usually molars) as a replacement for a lost tooth. A dental bridge is typically needed when a tooth is beyond the filling stage and requires extraction. A bridge is usually made of high quality materials such as porcelain.  A bridge will prevent teeth from shifting out of place over time due to the space created by a lost tooth. It can also help preserve gum and bone — this is an advantage should you one day decide to get dental implants.

Dental Crowns

These cover damaged, chipped, cracked or broken teeth. They are cemented in place to cover teeth at and above the gum line. Crowns are created to match the natural color of teeth.


These are perhaps what many are very familiar with because they are the most conventional replacements for lost teeth. They can be made to replace a complete set of teeth; they are removable, making cleaning easy. However, dentures need to be changed, usually in three to five years, because wearing them constantly tends to alter the size of the gums and bone; they become loose and will therefore need to be replaced with better-fitting new ones.

If you are looking for more information about restorative dentistry, contact your local Laurel area dentist at Nicholas Dental Care today!


Is Gingivitis Causing Your Tooth Pain?

GingivitisCan Gingivitis Cause Tooth Pain?

When you experience a toothache, it’s easy to assume that the pain is coming from one of the teeth in one particular side or section of your mouth because that is generally where the pain is coming from.

When you visit your Laurel MD dentist to have it checked out, you immediately see that your dentist isn’t as quick to pinpoint the offending tooth as you expected him to be. As it turns out, tooth pain can come from either an infection of the tooth or of the gums, or even an infection that has spread to both. Pinpointing the actual case is crucial in saving the affected tooth. Proper diagnosis is key to determining whether your pain is rooted from an infection in the gums, a cavity or a root issue.

Can Gingivitis Cause Tooth Pain?

Yes, tooth pain can begin when plaque, a film of bacteria, builds up along the gum line and causes the gums to become infected and inflamed; this inflammation is called gingivitis.

Gingivitis can cause the gum tissue to detach from the tooth surface. This creates pockets through which the infection can travel to the end of a tooth and into the tissues of its dental pulp (the sensitive tissue found inside the root canal).

Does a Decayed Tooth Lead to Infected Gums?

It could happen the other way around, too — damage to the tooth can cause gum disease. Bacteria find their way to the dental pulp inside the tooth, causing infection and pain that can range from dull to sharp, intermittent to constant, or localized to spread out to more than one area.

The tooth decay will have started a gum problem when the infection comes out of the tooth root and into the periodontal ligament. The problem may come in the form of a gum abscess or a periodontal pocket.

Getting the Right Help

It would be best practice for a general dentist to refer you to the right specialist — a periodontist who focuses on diseases of the structures that support teeth, or an endodontist who specializes in performing root canal procedures — in order to correctly zoom in on the problem area and take proper action.

Determining the nature of your tooth or gum pain is crucial because it would translate to specific outlooks. If the problem stems primarily from the tooth rather than the gums, root canal treatment may be all it takes to achieve good long-term results. If the problem is caused by gum disease, however, it’s possible that there may be too much bone loss and saving the tooth may no longer be done.

Schedule an appointment with your Laurel dentist to examine your mouth at the first sign of pain so that the appropriate treatment measures can be employed immediately. 

Broken Teeth | What Should You Do?

Broken TeethHow to Care for Broken Teeth  – A Laurel, MD Dentist Provides Tips

A broken tooth is always unfortunate but all you really can do is to prevent the dental situation from getting worse. Typically, a broken tooth is caused by an accident, an assault, untreated dental decay, biting or chewing unusually hard food (such as an un-popped corn kernel), teeth grinding, and a root canal therapy that didn’t conclude with the placement of a crown yet.

To prevent a broken tooth from getting damaged further, a Laurel, MD dentist has rounded up some great tips on how to care for a broken tooth below.

Pay Close Attention To Food Temperature

For superficial cracks in the enamel or craze lines, the best thing to do is to be careful with food temperature. Extremely hot and ice-cold food may lead to a real and bigger crack. You have the option to have the dentist look at it as soon as possible and be provided night guard veneers, but this really isn’t a very serious concern that demands an immediate trip to the dentist; you can wait until your scheduled check-up.

Be Aware of Sharp Edges

Chips on the edge of the broken teeth, also known as enamel fractures, can create really sharp teeth edges that can nick the tongue and lips. These need immediate dental attention so that composite resin filling or veneers can be applied. These solutions, according to a Laurel, MD dentist, will not only get rid of the sharp edge but also restore the nice appearance of teeth.

Schedule a Dental Appointment As Soon As Possible

Enamel and dentin fractures or fractures on teeth with lighter or darker components can feel like nothing for some, and sensitive for others. It’s best to make an appointment with the dentist right away so a filling can be applied to prevent infection and even the death of the teeth’s nerves. Before the appointment, make sure to rinse the broken tooth or teeth with warm water and avoid eating anything hard.

Consider if it’s a Dental Emergency

Fractured teeth with dark and red components known as enamel dentin and pulp fractures are medical emergencies. It’s imperative to see the dentist within 24 hours because of the pain and complications. This type of broken tooth requires a root canal and filling. While waiting for the appointment, avoid exposing teeth to extreme temperatures and stick to a soft or liquid diet.

Avoid Infections

Horizontal and vertical tooth root fractures are not visible, but they are very painful and can lead to infection and swelling. Care for the broken tooth or teeth by sticking to a soft diet and taking Tylenol. This situation requires urgent dental attention.

Care is basically the same for all types of broken teeth, so remembering what to do can be quite simple. If you break a tooth, you should implement the tips provided here and pay your Burtonsville dentist a visit as soon as possible if you’re unsettled about the dental issue.