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Monthly Archives: December 2012

What to Look For in a Cosmetic Dentist

It is important to do your research when choosing your cosmetic dentist. There are countless cosmetic dentists who are not as qualified or experienced as others, and this could make a huge difference in your whole cosmetic experience and results. Here are some things to find out prior to choosing who want to go to for your cosmetic dentistry needs:

    1. Education: Though this may be a given with any cosmetic dentist, it is important to find a dentist that has continued their education. With so many constant changes in the field of dentistry and in technology, you want a cosmetic dentist who is up-to-date in treatment options. Look at conferences and workshops that the cosmetic dentist has recently attended for this information. This information may be available on their website or you may call their office and ask.
    2. Professional memberships: It is important that your cosmetic dentist is a member of professional associations, such as AACD (American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry). This involvement displays that your cosmetic dentist has had intense training and regularly attends cosmetic dentistry conferences to stay up-to-date on his/her practice.
    3. What makes them special? A good, qualified cosmetic dentist usually has a certain specialization, such as cosmetic, restorative, or preventive services in dentistry. It is beneficial for you to see a dentist who is specialized in the area that you want fixed or improved.
    4. A good feeling: You want to feel comfortable with your cosmetic dentist, so it is important to choose someone who you feel is honest, helpful, patient, and understands your cosmetic dentistry needs. The best way to determine this is during your initial consultation with the dentist. If you leave your consultation feeling uncomfortable or concerned that the cosmetic dentist did not give you enough information or was not honest, it is best to get a consultation with another cosmetic dentist.
    5. A good office/staff: Your whole cosmetic dentistry experience begins when you walk through the door. You should choose a cosmetic dentist with a friendly staff who welcomes you politely and professionally. The office should be clean and up-to-date. Do not hesitate to ask about the equipment and technology the cosmetic dentist offers, so that you may know if you are getting the best up-to-date experience and treatment as possible.

Getting cosmetic dental treatment is important decision and you should feel as happy and comfortable with your cosmetic dentist as you should feel with any doctor. Do your research and decide what is best for you and your whole cosmetic dentistry experience. I welcome you to contact my dental practice and get started!

Simple Tips To Reduce Mouth Odor

When your breath isn’t fresh, you may feel uncomfortable or even self-conscious around others. Whether you have bad garlic or coffee breath, or a more chronic condition, such as halitosis, it is important that you take the necessary steps to get your breath smelling good again. When gum or mints isn’t cutting it, here are some helpful tips to improve the smell of your breath:

Keep your tongue clean

Just like your teeth and gums, your tongue can be a breeding ground for bacteria. Invest in a tongue scraper and make it a habit of scraping your tongue at least twice a day when you brush and floss. It is recommended that you brush your tongue from as far back as possible and scraping the food particles to the tip of your tongue. Then rinse your mouth and tongue with mouthwash to kill the bacteria.

Stay hydrated

By drinking water throughout the day, you are keeping your mouth moist and washing away food particles and bacteria. Drinking tea may also be helpful because it contains plant chemicals that decrease bacterial breath.

Watch what you eat

Certain diets may trigger bad breath. For example, a low carb diet can make your breath smell bad because of the fat-burning state, referred to as ketosis. Coffee, alcohol, onions, garlic, and other foods and drinks may also be triggers of harsh-smelling breath. By maintaining a healthy diet of fruits, vegetables, proteins, and healthy carbohydrates, as well as drinking lots of water, you can improve your chances of not having to deal with bad breath.

Aloe Vera Home Remedy

Aloe vera is not just a remedy for cuts and burns, but can also help with bad breath. It works as an anti-inflammatory that soothes acid indigestion, which can cause bad mouth odor. By dissolving a quarter-cup of aloe vera gel in a half-cup of water daily, you can help decrease the gastric acid and improve the smell of your breath.

Choose your gum wisely

Chewing gum or sucking mints are a common and temporary way to get rid of smelly breath. However, it is important that you choose sugarless gum and mints because the ones with sugar only add to your problem. By chewing sugarless gum, you can increase your saliva flow and wash away harmful bacteria on your teeth, gums, and tongue.

Visit your dentist regularly

If you notice that you have tried everything and still cannot get rid of the bad odor on your breath, it is time to visit your dentist. A regular professional cleaning at least two times a year can work wonders on the plaque and tartar buildup on your teeth and gums. Also, your dentist can help determine what is best for you to keep your mouth smelling fresh.

For the most part, as long as you follow good oral hygiene and visit your dentist regularly, you should be able to avoid conditions such as halitosis. It is important to also avoid smoking and the use of tobacco because it increases your chances of developing oral cancer and gum disease. If you feel like you have done everything you can do to stay on top of your oral health and still have halitosis, it is important to visit your doctor to rule out any other serious underlying health conditions that may cause bad breath, such as diabetes, infections, or other diseases.

Please feel free to schedule an appointment at my Beverly Hills dentistry practice. I look forward to helping you achieve an A-list smile!

Ancient Tooth Provides Possible Evidence of Prehistoric Dentistry

Prehistoric ToothHave you ever wondered what the prehistoric dentists used to take care of their patients’ teeth without the technology that we have today? Thanks to researchers, you may not need to wonder anymore. Researchers have discovered something that may open up knowledge and insight into the world of ancient dentistry.

In September 2012, researchers from Italy’s Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics found a 6,500 year-old human jawbone with a tooth still fused to it. The tooth contained small traces of beeswax that appeared to be a filling. This was reported in the open access journal PLOS ONE. The Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics worked with Sincrotone Trieste and several other institutions.

According to PLOS ONE, the beeswax was applied to the tooth close to the time when the person died. Studies hypothesized that if it were applied before the individual died, the beeswax may have been used to reduce pain or sensitivity, which could have been caused by a crack in the tooth. This breakthrough in research is exciting and may offer advanced knowledge of prehistoric dentistry.

If you have questions regarding dentistry and how to improve the condition of your oral health, please visit my Beverly Hills practice today. We welcome your visit.

ADA Gives the Big Apple Ban on Large Sugary Drinks a Thumbs Up

Lage Soda BanIt is common knowledge that large sodas and sugary drinks are unhealthy. However, restaurants, theaters, and food chains always have super-sized and extra large cups available for purchase, most of which include unlimited refills. It is not healthy for people to consume such large quantities of sugary drinks, but who is going to put a stop to these excessive beverage options?

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposed a regulation to ban restaurants, theaters, concession stands, and other eateries from selling large sodas and other sugary drinks. Specifically, the regulation bans the sale of sweetened drinks in cups and bottles that are larger than 16 ounces. This was the first time a mayor had attempted to do this. New York City’s Board of Health approved this regulation, and the ban will go into effect on March 12, 2013. The restaurant and beverage industries are fighting against this ban, even threatening to bring it to court.

Drinking massive amounts of soda and other beverages that contain large amounts of sugar may lead to heart disease, obesity, tooth decay, and a variety of other health conditions that are not to be taken lightly. The American Dental Association (ADA) has attempted several times to share this knowledge with the public and keep them informed of these dangers so that they could make better choices when they order a drink.

Though this ban has caused controversy and may not stop people from consuming these large drinks, many health institutions, including the ADA, are recognizing Mayor Bloomberg for shedding light on the dangers of large sugar consumption.

At my Los Angeles dentistry practice, I will help improve the appearance and quality of your teeth, and I am happy to answer any questions you may have. Please schedule your consultation today!

The Connection Between Oral Health and Overall Health

Oral HealthMost do not realize the strong connection between your oral health and your overall health. Problems in your mouth can actually be a gateway to other serious conditions throughout your body.

Our mouths are filled with different strains of bacteria. While most of these are naturally occurring and harmless, some bacteria can cause serious tooth decay, gum disease, and other oral infections. Our body naturally fights against most bacteria, but some strains are so ruthless that they can cause a whole world of trouble. Other things that can interfere with our oral health are certain medications, dental procedures, and treatments that break down our mouth’s natural defenses.

When the body’s natural barriers are broken down, the oral bacteria can enter the bloodstream
and spread to other parts of our body. There has been a lot of research that shows that oral
health is a window to your overall health, and that certain bacteria from the mouth can lead to
other serious conditions. Poor oral hygiene has proven to lead to other health conditions such
as cardiovascular disease, endocarditis, diabetes, osteoporosis, Alzheimer’s disease, and certain
cancers.

So, how can you fight against these dangerous bacterial infections? Brush your teeth at least
twice a day, floss daily, and use toothpaste and mouthwash that contains fluoride. Eat a well-
balanced meal and limit your intake of sugar, especially sugar-filled treats, such as candy and
soda. Rinse your mouth out after consuming sugary drinks or foods.

In order to maintain a beautiful, healthy-looking smile, be sure to visit your dentist on a regular
basis. Feel free to schedule your consultation at my Los Angeles dental practice. We welcome
your visit!

Coconut Oil May Prevent Tooth Decay

CoconutCoconut Oil Benefits

“I’ve got a lovely bunch of coconuts…do dee do dee…” We all know the Merv Griffin song singing the praises of delicious coconuts. Now dentists and doctors are singing the praises of coconut oil for tooth decay. Scientists believe that enzyme-modified coconut oil, or semi-digested coconut oil has feasible antimicrobial qualities for oral health.

Oral Bacteria Causes Tooth Decay

Streptococcus bacteria is one of the most common bacteria in people’s mouths and is a strong component that causes tooth decay. Certain food, when digested, has the ability to destroy microorganisms in the mouth and digestion system.

Testing Conducted

Dr. Damien Brady and his team of researchers at the Athlone Institute of Technology in Ireland
researched whether coconut oil has antibiotic elements against oral bacteria also known as
streptococcus bacteria. Their tests were conducted naturally and as semi-digested.

Results

The research team determined that although natural and undigested coconut oil has no impact
on the bacteria, digested coconut oil could combat bacteria. They reported that coconut oil can
destroy bacteria that causes tooth decay. The researchers also stated that digested coconut oil
can be added to dental care products as an antibiotic component.

Future Studies

Dr. Brady and his team of researchers have future plans of testing how coconut oil works
against streptococcus bacteria and determining whether digested coconut oil has the ability to
fight against other bacteria and yeasts that can cause health issues.

I look forward to answering any of your questions and addressing your concerns. Please feel
free to schedule your consultation with me at my Beverly Hills cosmetic dentistry practice.

What's a tooth worth? Tooth Fairy says it's now $3

Tooth FairyImagine a world where a child is paid almost your hourly wage for losing their tooth and putting it under their pillow? Open your eyes and you’re in that world. According to a survey conducted by Visa, the average amount of money the Tooth Fairy is paying kids these days is $3, and some receive as much as $20 per tooth!

Is this a good thing or a bad thing? Child psychologists say that giving children higher amounts of money may warp their insight of money. For instance, it may teach a child that they have to do something to earn money, but it may also teach children that they didn’t have to do much to earn the money. A survey of teachers said that “high-paying teeth” is becoming too popular in elementary schools because children compare the amount of money they received from the Tooth Fairy. If a child learns that their peers are being given $20 for each tooth they lose, then he/she will feel unhappy about earning only $1.

So, how do parents determine how much to pay for their children’s teeth? Visa launched an iPhone and iPad app that calculates a parent’s gender, education, location, age, and income to determine the recommended dollar amount for his/her child. According to Visa, the tooth fairy calculator promotes fiscal responsibility for kids.

Feel free to contact my Los Angeles office for all of your dental needs, as well as your child’s dental needs. I am here to help every individual achieve a healthy-looking, A-list smile! Please schedule your consultation today.

Oral Bacteria May Signal Pancreatic Cancer Risk

PancreasMany do not realize how crucial it is to take care of their teeth for overall health. Those who do not brush, floss, and visit the dentist regularly increase their chances of developing other serious health issues.

One of the most difficult cancers to detect, as well as one of the most deadly, is pancreatic cancer. When a cancer is hard to detect, it is nearly impossible to take precautions. However, recent studies have found a link between high levels of antibodies for oral bacteria and pancreatic cancer.

In September 2012, a study was published in Gut, a monthly peer-reviewed international journal of gastroenterology and hepatology. In this study, over 800 blood samples from European adults were collected and tested, 405 from pancreatic cancer cases and 416 matched controls. Researchers found that those with high levels of antibodies against pathogenic periodontal bacteria (Porphyromonas gingivalis) had a twofold higher risk of pancreatic cancer than those with lower levels of these antibodies. On the other hand, those with high levels of antibodies against common, non-pathogenic oral bacteria had a 45% lower risk of pancreatic cancer. The researchers concluded that periodontal disease may increase the risk for pancreatic cancer. While there were previous studies on the correlation of periodontal disease and pancreatic cancer, Gut was the first to study antibodies for oral bacteria as a sign of pancreatic cancer risk.

Studies such as this are strong evidence of the importance of taking care of your teeth and oral
health. The research is not meant to scare anyone. Rather, it is confirmation of the danger of
not keeping your mouth healthy. It is vitally important to present this information to educate
and keep you informed so you can continue to practice healthy oral hygiene, including regular
brushing and flossing. Reduce your risk of developing serious health conditions, such as
pancreatic cancer, by taking care of your mouth today!

Please contact my Beverly Hills dental practice to schedule a consultation. I look forward to
meeting with you and addressing your concerns.

414 N. CAMDEN DRIVE, SUITE 940
BEVERLY HILLS, CA 90210
Tel: (310) 273-0111

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Request an appointment for a complimentary consultation with cosmetic dentist Dr. Sands, or feel free to call our Los Angeles (north of Orange County) office at (310) 273-0111 for more information.