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Monthly Archives: November 2013

Would You Rather Have a Perfect Body or a Perfect Smile?

Woman smiling while doing a push upAccording to new research from the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD), consumers are more likely to spend money on a younger looking smile than on weight loss help.

These findings make perfect sense for a few reasons:

1. Since the smile is one of the first things people notice about another person, making a small improvement, such as teeth whitening or bonding a chipped tooth, can significantly make someone appear more youthful. Friends may notice that something about you has improved, but they may not be able to determine just what it is.

2. Replacing missing teeth with dental implants literally makes the face appear more youthful. When missing teeth are not replaced, the patient is very likely to experience facial bone loss as time progresses. This can alter the shape of the face, making the jaw appear smaller. Not only do they fill in missing teeth, but dental implants actually prevent bone loss because of the way they are installed.

3. Although we would not discourage healthy weight loss, losing weight can actually make one appear older. When volume is lost, those who have poor skin elasticity will develop more wrinkles, especially on the face. A recent study comparing twins of different weights showed that the thinner twin almost always appeared older than the heavier twin. Spending money on weight loss tools or programs may help you become physically healthier, but they should not be your first choice if looking younger is your goal.

At Dr. Sands’ practice, we agree that maintaining a healthy and beautiful smile is a worthwhile investment. Invisalign® is a particularly great treatment to correct crooked teeth since the straightening trays are virtually undetectable. Porcelain veneers can also correct crooked teeth, as well as broken, cracked, or chipped teeth.

Dr. Sands offers many cosmetic dental procedures that can improve the overall appearance of your smile. If you would like more information about how to take years off your appearance with cosmetic dentistry, please call (310) 273-0111 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a consultation.

Should I Get Veneers or Caps?

Comparison of porcelain veneers and caps Although porcelain veneers and caps (also called crowns) are somewhat similar dental treatments, they serve different purposes. The best choice between the two will depend on the needs and desires of the patient.

Veneers and crowns both require part of the natural tooth to be altered in order to be bonded to it. Because of this, both are considered permanent treatment options.

Typically, veneers are used for aesthetic reasons only on the front, “smiling” teeth. When a patient would like to correct the shape or color of their teeth, veneers make an excellent choice. Usually made of porcelain, veneers are formed into the thickness of a contact lens and are bonded to the natural tooth to disguise teeth that are crooked, cracked, broken, or discolored. The porcelain material looks, feels, and functions just like a natural tooth. For veneers, about 0.1 to 0.5 millimeter of the tooth’s enamel is etched away. Although this is a small amount, it will permanently alter the appearance of the tooth, and it will not look the same without the veneer attached to it.

Crowns are most often used in cases where much of the tooth structure is missing, which can be caused by tooth decay, root canal therapy, or accidental breakage. Since crowns are usually applied to posterior teeth, they are available in both natural-looking porcelain as well as less expensive materials that do not match surrounding teeth, such as gold, nickel, or chromium. Unlike veneers, crowns cover the tooth on all sides and require more of the natural tooth to be etched away. Although crowns can achieve all the aesthetic purposes that veneers can, they should only be used if absolutely necessary.

If you are considering porcelain veneers or caps in the Beverly Hills area, celebrity cosmetic dentist Dr. Sands can help determine which treatment is right for you. Please schedule a consultation today by calling (310) 273-0111 or filling out our online contact form.

Causes of Bleeding Gums

inside of bottom teeth with dental mirrorComplete oral health means more than just keeping your teeth clean. A common misconception that many people have is that if their teeth appear white, then their mouth is healthy.

A healthy smile consists of more than just a bright white set of teeth. In order to attain complete oral health, individuals need to make sure their gums are also in excellent condition. Unfortunately, about half of the U.S. population aged 30 years and older have periodontal (gum) disease according to the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP). A common precursor to periodontal disease is bleeding gums, which can be caused by various factors.

Poor Oral Hygiene

Brushing your teeth twice a day may seem sufficient to some, but there are other things that must be done regularly to ensure a healthy mouth that is free of bleeding gums. Flossing at least once a day should also be done along with brushing, and teeth cleanings are strongly recommended throughout the year by a dental professional.

Gingivitis

Gingivitis is a condition that occurs when the gums become inflamed due to plaque and tartar build-up on the teeth. Regular brushing can reduce the amount of plaque on the teeth, while tartar removal typically requires a visit to a dental professional.

Hormonal Changes

For some women, the gums are more sensitive when they are pregnant. Known as “pregnancy gingivitis,” a woman’s gums tend to bleed during the months of pregnancy because of drastic hormonal fluctuations, which affect the blood flow throughout the body.

Bleeding Disorders

Diseases such as idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) prevent blood from clotting, which often causes excessive bleeding and bruising. The gums are one of the first areas that are noticeably affected by ITP because it is easily visible.

The health of your gums is necessary not just to your smile, but also to your overall health. If you wish to reverse the effects of bleeding gums and improve the health of your mouth, please contact our Beverly Hills practice today. Our cosmetic dentist, Dr. Kevin Sands, is a member of The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, the Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, and the American Dental Association. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Sands, call (310) 273-0111 or fill out our online contact form today. We look forward to meeting you!

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.