Tips and Tricks to Maintaining Whiter Teeth

White, healthy teeth can take years off your look. Your teeth tend to darken with age, but there are some tips for keeping them looking their best.

First you must follow good oral hygiene practices. It is important to brush your teeth at least twice a day, and floss once a day to remove plaque. An even better practice is to brush after every meal or snack. Use a soft bristled brush to prevent gum erosion, and a whitening toothpaste to remove surface stains and prevent yellowing. Consider using an electric or sonic toothbrush, which may be superior to traditional toothbrushes for removing plaque and surface stains on teeth.

Avoid foods and beverages that stain your teeth, such as coffee, tea, berries, and red wine. Anything that can stain a white shirt can stain teeth. When consuming beverages that stain, use a straw so that the liquid does not pass over your teeth. Eat a healthy diet, and avoid sugar and anything that sticks to your teeth to minimize tooth decay that can discolor and destroy teeth.

Brush or rinse your teeth immediately after consuming meals or staining beverages. Simply rinsing your mouth with water after every meal can have a tremendous impact on reducing staining. Rinsing is particularly crucial after drinking wine, as it has acids that can penetrate the enamel, making your teeth more susceptible to staining.

Avoid smoking, which is one of the worst culprits when it comes to staining teeth. Tobacco causes dark stains that infiltrate the tooth enamel and are hard to remove simply by brushing. The more you smoke, the deeper the stains become making them even harder to remove.

See your dentist regularly for check-ups and thorough teeth cleaning. If you have had whitening treatments, consider touch-up treatments after a year or two. Following these tips, along with preventative care by your dentist, can help your smile remain bright for years to come.

 

For professional teeth whitening in Shreveport LA, contact our dental office to schedule your consultation.

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Repair Your Teeth with Dental Crowns

Your oral health and comfort can be jeopardized when your teeth sustain damage. Deep cracks, severe pain, and possible tooth loss can occur if you don’t receive treatment for a structurally unstable tooth. If your tooth needs more than a regular filling to restore its integrity, your dentist may choose a dental crown. Also called a cap, a dental crown fits securely over any tooth structure above the gum line.

Depending on the extent of damage and the location of the tooth, your dentist will place a ceramic, porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM), or metal crown. Usually, porcelain crowns are recommended for teeth that are visible when you smile. Because the human bite can exert about 50 pounds of pressure in the back of the mouth, the chewing force can be as powerful as 200 lbs, which could destroy a ceramic crown. Typically, all-metal, porcelain-fused-to-metal, or zirconia crowns are used for back teeth.

Sometimes, damage occurs to a tooth that doesn’t need a crown, but is too severe for a filling. Inlays and onlays offer a good solution. Constructed from solid ceramic or metal materials, these partial crowns are stronger than traditional fillings. Inlays cover the cusps (bumps) on top of a tooth; onlays fit over a cusp and down the side of the tooth.

Crown placement usually takes two appointments. At the first visit, your dentist will remove the damaged tissue, reshape the tooth, and take impressions for the custom restoration. Your doctor will also place a temporary crown. Final placement will occur at the second appointment, once the dental office receives the permanent restoration.

Dentist in Shreveport LA for dental crowns

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Take Care of Your Family’s Oral Health

As a parent, your job is protecting your children’s wellbeing, which includes their oral health. Having healthy teeth and gums will allow them to chew properly, avoid toothaches, and prevent other issues like gum disease. Research has also linked oral health to larger issues such as heart disease, osteoporosis, and Alzheimer’s.

You can easily watch out for the dental health of your loved ones with these helpful tips:

Start Young
As soon as your children have teeth, usually around age two, start wiping them down or using training toothpaste. By age five, they can start brushing with fluoride toothpaste.

Use Fluoride
Getting enough fluoride helps strengthen enamel and prevent decay. Make sure, however, that you don’t get too much fluoride because over fluoridation can leave spots on your teeth.

Develop Good Home Habits
Make brushing twice daily and flossing regularly a priority to prevent gum disease.

Rinse after Meals
Using antibacterial rinse or chewing gum after you eat can increase saliva flow, which neutralizes acid and washes away bacteria in your mouth.

Protect Their Smiles
If you or your children are involved in sports activities, talk to your dentist about getting a mouth guard. These dental appliances cover your teeth and help prevent serious mouth injuries when you play sports such as basketball, volleyball, and soccer.

Eat right
A balanced diet rich with fruits, vegetables, and whole grains will provide the nutrients you need to keep your teeth and gums healthy.

Visit the Dentist
Routine checkups are an important part of good oral health. Schedule appointments for your whole family every six months.

General and Family Dentist in Shreveport LA

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When to Consider Dental Sealants

Thin plastic coatings that protect against decay, dental sealants are typically applied to back teeth and molars. Although pediatric dentists frequently recommend dental sealants for their young patients, some adults may benefit from these coverings as well. If you or your children are prone to cavities, talk with your dentist about the benefits of sealants.

How does the dentist place sealants?
If you decide on sealants, the application process is simple. First, your dentist will clean and dry the teeth involved. Next, the dentist will brush the mixture onto the teeth. Often, your doctor will use a curing light to harden the plastic material.

Will anyone notice the sealants?
At first, you may feel the sealants with your tongue, which can happen anytime you have something new in your mouth. Because they are clear, most people won’t even notice that you have sealants.

Are sealants permanent?
Usually, the sealants will last about 5 to 10 years. During your routine visits, the dentist can check the sealants to make sure they are in good condition, and when needed, schedule an appointment to have damaged sealants replaced.

Why are sealants better than fillings?
Preventing decay is always better than repairing cavities in your teeth. Sealants can help prevent cavities before they compromise your amazing smile.

Are sealants an alternative to fluoride?
Although sealants provide a safeguard for tooth surfaces, they do not offer the minerals and necessary elements that found in fluoride, which helps protect the whole tooth structure.

Dentist in Shreveport LA that offers dental sealants.

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Using Root Canal Treatment to Save a Tooth

Root canal treatment has a somewhat undeserved reputation for being unpleasant, but it is a very effective way of saving a badly infected tooth. If decay or damage has enabled bacteria to get into a tooth, then the root canals and pulp inside it will need to be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected, before the tooth is permanently restored. Prompt treatment can help save a tooth from extraction, and it can often be used normally for many years afterwards. Modern root canal treatments mean this procedure is no worse than having a tooth filled.

How Does A Tooth Pulp Become Damaged?
The root canals and pulp of your tooth contain blood vessels and nerves that help keep the tooth healthy. If the outer part of the tooth becomes damaged in some way then bacteria can infect the inner part of the tooth, and eventually the nerves in the tooth will die. Unless the infection is removed, it will continue to destroy tissues in and around the tooth, often causing a painful abscess.

What Does Treatment Involve?
Treatment usually takes two or more visits to your endodontist in Shreveport. The first appointment will remove infected and damaged tissue in the tooth, using local anaesthetic to keep you comfortable. If necessary, antibiotics can be placed into the empty root canals to help kill off remaining bacteria and the area will be temporarily sealed, or you might be prescribed a course of antibiotics. Alternatively the tooth will be permanently sealed. Teeth that have had root canal therapy are generally restored with a crown that helps prevent further infection and which restores strength to the tooth.

What Can I expect After Treatment?
You might feel some minor discomfort after treatment, as it can stir up the infection in the tooth. However if you had severe toothache before treatment then you should feel much more comfortable once the infection has been removed by your root canal dentist in Shreveport. The tooth should soon settle down, and once permanently restored can be used normally. Your tooth doesn’t need the pulp to function, and once treated could last for many years or even for life.

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The Importance of a Smile Makeover

Your smile is one of the first things someone notices about you. Having a good smile is a sign of health and youthfulness, and those possessing a good smile naturally exude confidence and ease. This comfort is brought about by a knowledge that they can eat, converse, smile and laugh in public without fear of an unsightly smile.

If you are considering a smile makeover in Shreveport, you may already have noticed areas of your life where your smile is holding you back. Do you smile closed-mouthed in photos? Do you cover your mouth when you laugh? Do you avoid eating with friends for fear of your mouth’s condition? Have you avoided dating because intimate conversation and contact are problematic for you because of your teeth?

Personally and professionally, our smiles can hold us back. Without realizing it, everyone you meet is making an unconscious impression of you based on your teeth. Smiles that are decayed, dingy in color, or with missing teeth send an often erroneous message about our backgrounds, our priorities and our social statuses that can affect us negatively, causing us to miss out on that first date or that job promotion.

Don’t let your smile hold you back another moment. Working with a skilled cosmetic dentist, you can make a plan to address everything you don’t like about your mouth. Whether it’s the shape of your teeth, their alignment, their color or their condition, your cosmetic dentist can help you makeover your smile completely.

You may need work to make your mouth healthier with a renewed commitment to oral hygiene and regular checkups. Orthodontics might be a part of your smile makeover, or you may whiten and brighten your smile with in-office whitening treatments. Dental veneers can change the shape, color and length of one or more problematic teeth, while dental bridges or dental implants can remedy missing or gapped teeth.

Your smile is a huge part of who you are. Start expressing your best self with a smile makeover. Begin working toward that goal with your cosmetic dentist today.

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Common Tooth Restorations

Although teeth are meant to last, things happen that can cause you damage or tooth loss. Tooth structure can deteriorate from decay, a prior restoration can weaken, or a tooth can fracture. Tooth restorations are the ways that your dentist can restore your smile by replacing missing teeth or missing parts of your tooth’s structure. Here are some examples of tooth restorations that you might need.

Fillings
Dental fillings, the most common type of tooth restorations, can be made from silver amalgam, gold, or composite resin materials. Fillings are most often necessary to restore a tooth that has been damaged by decay or trauma.

Crowns
A crown is a cap that is placed over a tooth. It restores the natural tooth’s size, shape, and strength so that it can secure a bridge or cover an implant.

Bridges
These are artificial teeth that bridge the gap caused by one or more missing teeth. Bridges may be held in place by crowns on either side, and cemented in place permanently.

Implants
Dental implants serve to replace the roots of a missing tooth. A small metal post is placed into the bone where teeth are missing, and the implant is then covered with a crown.

Dentures
Serving to replace missing teeth and surrounding tissues, dentures are made of acrylic resin and often sometimes include metal attachments. These removable restorations may replace an entire mouthful of teeth, or just some of the teeth when there are any natural teeth still in place. In that case, metal clasps are connected to the natural teeth to secure the artificial teeth in place.

dentist in Richmond VA

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It is Never Too Late to Change Your Smile

You may think it is too late to change your smile if you have already reached adulthood, but this certainly is not the case. Nowadays, more adults are opting for cosmetic dentistry procedures to help them achieve their dream smile.

It is easy to justify spending time and money on your smile, as the effects can positively impact your personal and professional life, and can help improve your dental health. If you are embarrassed about smiling, you’ll find your self-esteem and self-confidence will improve tremendously after having cosmetic dentistry. Then of course there are the benefits to your oral health. Crooked teeth can be awkward to brush and floss properly, enabling plaque bacteria to build up. This increases your risk of developing gum disease and tooth decay, and could eventually lead to tooth loss. If your teeth don’t bite together properly, this can cause problems with your jaw joints, leading to jaw and facial pain, and even headaches.

There are lots of good reasons for considering cosmetic dentistry during adulthood, and the solutions can often be affordable, painless and fast. For example, ask your cosmetic dentist in Shreveport about using dental bonding to correct minor chips and cracks in your teeth. Gum contouring can help correct a gummy smile, and may improve oral health. Dental implants are the gold standard for permanently replacing missing teeth, while invisible braces can correct bite problems and issues with misaligned teeth. These are just a few of the options available today, but the best way to find out more is to book a consultation with your dentist in Shreveport. You may be surprised how much can be achieved.

 

Smile makeover dentist in Shreveport LA

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Combining Appearance and Health through Cosmetic Dentistry

The role of cosmetic dentistry is mainly to improve a patient’s appearance through innovative techniques that can transform the smile. However, cosmetic dentists can also provide solutions to improve overall health. Good health and good looks go hand-in-hand sometimes when it comes to cosmetic dentistry.

Most patients turn to cosmetic dentists with the goal of correcting an embarrassing smile. Sometimes an accident or trauma has resulted in a defective smile that can be repaired with cosmetic dental procedures. Or, issues from birth and how a person’s mouth has naturally developed may warrant correction. Other patients have medical conditions that have contributed to less than perfect oral health or smile appearance. Additionally, bad habits like smoking or chewing on hard objects has led to unsightly teeth. Whatever the reason, cosmetic dentistry can help.

There are a wide variety of treatment options available today, with more and more being offered all the time as technology advances. Here are some popular choices:

  • Veneers are extremely thin porcelain or resin shells that are bonded to the fronts of teeth to hide flaws. They are long-lasting and instantly improve smiles, also having the effect of improving self-esteem.
  • Teeth whitening removes stains and discolorations to brighten smiles multiple shades in as little as just one hour.
  • Bonding involves painlessly applying tooth-colored composite resin to repair damaged teeth, such as chips, fractures or gaps. It can usually be performed in a single office visit.
  • Dental implants are surgically inserted titanium rods that go directly into the jaw to replace missing teeth, with a crown placed on top to complete the restoration. They provide a secure, permanent, and natural-looking smile repair. Implants also improve health by stimulating bones to avoid bone loss that often accompanies missing teeth.
  • Contouring removes small amounts of tooth enamel to eliminate minor flaws on the tooth surface. This helps get rid of places where plaque may accumulate, which improves overall oral health as well.

Qualified cosmetic dentist Dr. Yazdani can guide patients through just one simple procedure or a list of procedures that can benefit patients in many ways.

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Dental Care: It’s Simple!!

Taking care of your teeth and gums shouldn’t be viewed as difficult or time consuming, it’s really pretty simple! Once you establish a routine, you’ll get into the habit of properly caring for your mouth. Then you can reap the many benefits, instead of having to deal with often painful and troublesome results of poor dental hygiene. Here are some helpful hints for good dental care and ultimately a beautiful, bright smile.

Brushing
Many people don’t brush their teeth often or thoroughly enough. You should brush at least twice a day, and spend at least two minutes doing it. Use a soft toothbrush and brush in a gentle, circular motion on each tooth and from every angle. For even better results, give your mouth a good rinse with mouthwash after brushing.

Flossing
To get rid of trapped food particles and plaque buildup between your teeth, floss every single day. Be gentle so that you don’t damage your gums. Flossing is a crucial part of your dental care routine because it helps eliminate bacteria that could lead to health problems in the future.

Fluoride
Use toothpaste and mouth rinse containing fluoride, which is an important mineral proven to help strengthen your tooth enamel and improve your oral health. Fluoride also helps prevent tooth decay.

Diet
Maintaining a healthy diet not only is good for your body, it’s also good for your teeth and gums. Limit your sugar intake, because sweets and starches can lead to tooth decay. If you do eat sugary foods or drinks, remember to brush afterwards. Avoid using tobacco products and consuming staining foods like berries and coffee, as these items may discolor your teeth.

Checkups
Regular visits to your dentist are an important part of good oral care. Examinations can identify and treat problems before they worsen, and professional cleanings really improve the health of your teeth and gums.

 

Dental office in Shreveport

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General Rules for Smile Makeovers

If you’re thinking of having your look transformed to give you a celebrity smile, a smile makeover at our Shreveport dental office may be in your future. Numerous procedures are possible for a variety of issues that might be making you unhappy or embarrassed about your smile. Before you get started on a makeover, learning the general rules about the process may help you decide if it’s the step you want to take.

First, every smile makeover is different for each patient. It depends on the tooth, jaw, or gum issues that you might have. It also depends on your goals for your smile. Some patients may have only one problem to address, while others have multiple flaws and are looking for a total transformation.

Some common things that smile makeovers take care of include crooked teeth, gaps, chips, discoloration, missing teeth, unappealing gums, and broken teeth. Types of procedures that are often performed during smile makeovers are teeth whitening, dental veneers, bonding, crowns, dental implants, bridges, gum contouring, and braces.

As you can see, the variety of treatments means there is also a variety of timeframes involved. Some procedures can be completed in a single dental visit, while others may take months for full treatment. Many smile makeovers are done more quickly than you might think, with quick procedures creating a big difference in your appearance and confidence level. The recovery for most procedures is often fast, and discomfort is typically well-managed by medication and other methods.

The goal of smile makeovers is to permanently improve your smile so that you’ll be happier and feel better about your look. Most procedures provide permanent results, especially with good oral hygiene and regular checkups. So if you’re dissatisfied with your smile and considering a change, see your dentist to get started on a smile makeover now.

 

 

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Proper Care after Tooth Extraction

After you’ve had a tooth surgically removed, the healing process begins. However, there are some important guidelines you should follow so that healing takes place completely and as quickly as possible. Here are some suggestions for caring for yourself after having a tooth extracted.

•    Bite on gauze to control bleeding, and change it every few minutes for a couple of hours after the extraction. Holding a cold compress or ice pack to the area may also help.
•    Eat only soft foods for the first few days after surgery while the site begins to heal. You may resume your normal diet after a few days.
•    Take over-the-counter pain medication as directed by your dentist to alleviate discomfort. If your pain level is high, you may be prescribed a stronger pain medicine.
•    Do not chew, rinse, or brush on the extraction site for at least 24-48 hours after surgery.
•    Do not suck through a straw, because that can loosen the blood clot. Disturbing the clot can lead to bleeding or a painful dry socket.
•    Smoking promotes bleeding and delays in healing, so do not smoke for at least 24 hours after the extraction.
•    See your dentist one week after surgery to have any stitches removed and the wound examined for proper healing. If you experience complications, visit your dentist sooner. Some swelling, bleeding, and discomfort is expected after oral surgery, but significant bleeding more than 4-6 hours afterwards is reason to call your dentist or visit the emergency room if you cannot contact your dentist.

dentist in Richmond VA

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Examining Teeth Whitening

The well known method people opt to enhance their smiles is with teeth whitening. There are in fact, many products on the market today that claim to improve the color of your teeth. Through various methods, many can have teeth professionally whitened at the dentist’s office. Whatever method it might be, there’s no dispute that brightening the color of your teeth and erasing stains will improve your appearance. It can also change someone to look younger and more vibrant.

Our teeth can become discolored for many reasons. The most common one bring consuming foods and beverages that are known to stain teeth. Chief culprits are tea, coffee, sodas, red wine, dark sauces, and some types of berries. Aging is another phenomenon that causes tooth color to become dull over time. Smoking or using other forms of tobacco will discolor your teeth rather quickly too. Besides, neglecting dental hygiene allows your teeth to become dingy and stained.

No matter hard you try to avoid most of these common causes of tooth discoloration, it’s difficult to keep your smile bright and nice. Over-the-counter choices include products like gels, pens, whitening strips, toothpaste, and more. These products contain some level of hydrogen peroxide that acts as a bleaching agent for the enamel. However, these products require consistent and lengthier use to see results. More efficient results are possible with professional whitening performed by your dentist. Professional whitening uses stronger bleaching agents and often employs the use of special lights that enhance the process. In less than an hour, your teeth can appear to be several shades brighter.

Teeth whitening methods are most efficient on smooth surface stains, but dark stains within the tooth enamel may be impossible to eliminate. Take, for example, there are few types of medications causing these types of severe stains. In difficult cases, it may be a better choice to consider options like dental veneers to restore them.ur smile.

 

Teeth whitening dentist in Shreveport

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Root Canals Get a Bad Rap

If you ask most people, they would rather do just about anything than get a root canal. The truth is root canal therapy actually alleviates pain and restores the health of a damaged tooth. With modern sedation options, patients remain calm and relaxed during the procedure.

To understand how a root canal works, it helps to look at the anatomy of a tooth. Your teeth contain a hard outer shell called enamel, a layer of dentin, and a soft nerve center referred to as pulp. This tissue, made up of nerves and blood vessels, keeps the tooth healthy, ensuring blood flow and providing vital nutrients.

When a tooth experiences severe trauma or develops deep decay, the pulp can sustain damage and die. Often, pressure and infection will build up inside the tooth. To save the tooth, your dentist may recommend a root canal, which can be performed in one appointment.

Signs you may need a root canal:

  • A lingering toothache
  • Blood or pus surrounding the tooth
  • Pain during chewing
  • Swelling in the gums or nearby tissue
  • Sensitivity to hot or cold

For a root canal, the dentist will numb the tooth and then clean out the infection. Next, the doctor will sterilize the inside area and seal off the tooth to prevent future problems. After a root canal, the tooth will usually require a crown for a complete restoration. Most people actually feel better after root canal therapy. In fact, many patients only need over-the-counter pain relievers for mild soreness.

Root canal dentist in Shreveport LA

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Easy Ways to Improve Your Smile

A gorgeous smile makes a lasting impression. In this day and age, people have a variety of choices to keep their pearly whites looking sensational.

Consider these simple steps to enjoying a fantastic image:

  • Visit the dentist regularly. Routine cleanings and checkups will go a long way to keep your teeth healthy. These appointments also allow Dr. Mike Sagarian to monitor your oral health and address any problems before they escalate.
  • Practice proper home care. If you don’t make brushing and flossing a priority, your smile will suffer. Tooth decay and gum disease can wreak havoc on your oral health and appearance.
  • Consider orthodontic treatment. Did you know that a straight smile not only looks better, but it is also easier to keep clean? Modern treatment options such as Invisalign aligners allow you to achieve a perfect smile without traditional metal braces.
  • Explore cosmetic dentistry options. Even simple procedures, like teeth whitening or bonding, can have a big impact on your smile. Make a consultation appointment with Dr. Mike Sagarian to review all your options.
  • Change your diet. Acidic foods can cause enamel erosion and dark beverages can stain teeth, so try to consume these items in moderation.
  • Kick the tobacco habit. Smoking can make you prone to periodontal disease, which can result in gum regression, loose teeth, and even tooth loss.
  • Smile more often. Most people feel better when they smile, and others respond well to your positive energy, so give it a try.

Family and Cosmetic Dentist in Shreveport LA

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Dental Implant Q and A

Conservative estimates suggest that 69 percent of adults in this country have lost at least one tooth. When you lose even a single tooth, you face oral health issues. Remaining teeth may shift, other teeth can become loose and normal functions like talking or eating can be difficult. The closest prosthetics to nature, dental implants can renew the strength, appearance, and vitality of your smile.

What is a dental implant?
Fabricated from biocompatible titanium, a dental implant is a small, metal post surgically inserted into your jaw bone. The post serves as an artificial tooth root for the permanent crown that will complete your smile restoration.

How long is the implant process?
From start to finish, implant therapy takes about six months. During the first phase, a skilled surgeon will place one post for each implant into the empty sockets. After this procedure, your mouth will need time to heal and to allow the bone to fuse with the implants, creating a solid foundation for the prosthetic teeth. Usually, the permanent crowns are secured to the posts three to six month after the initial surgery.

Am I a good candidate for dental implants?
For successful implant therapy, patients need to have good oral health and sufficient bone structure. Your dentist will complete a thorough evaluation before beginning treatment. If you don’t have enough bone tissue, your dentist may suggest bone grafts to improve your chances for a positive outcome.

What are the advantages to implants?
Implants provide several benefits, including:

  • Attractiveness
  • Functionality
  • Permanence
  • Stability

How do I care for my implants?
One plus of dental implants is that you treat them as you do your natural teeth: brush often, floss regularly, and see your dentist for routine checkups.

Dental implants done at our Shreveport dentistry office.

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Ways to Relieve Dry Mouth

Does your mouth feel like it’s full of cotton? Or does it remind you of the Sahara Desert? Having an overly dry mouth can result from a variety of dental and medical issues. For example, one common culprit of dry mouth symptoms is related to medications. The best long-term solution is to consult your dentist or physician to determine the root cause of your dry mouth, and to get treatment to solve the problem. Sometimes all that is needed is to change to a different medication, and your dry mouth will disappear. However, here are some things you can try to temporarily relieve your dry mouth until you are able to determine what is causing it.

  • Sip water often.
  • Limit caffeine consumption, which can dry out your mouth even more.
  • Chew sugarless gum or suck on sugarless hard candy.
  • Use an over-the-counter saliva substitute, such as Biotene.
  • Do not use tobacco products of any kind.
  • Do not use mouthwashes containing alcohol, because it can be drying.
  • Avoid over-the-counter antihistamines and decongestants, which can worsen your dryness symptoms.
  • Add moisture to the air using a humidifier.
  • Try to breathe through your nose instead of your mouth.

If you do experience the symptoms of dry mouth, it’s especially important to protect your oral health. Make sure you brush your teeth with toothpaste containing fluoride, and ask your dentist if prescription fluoride toothpaste would benefit you. Use a fluoride mouth rinse before bed to add an extra layer of protection for your teeth. Limit the amount of sugary foods or items high in acids, as both of these types of foods increase your risk of tooth decay. Following these tips for relieving dry mouth symptoms can make it more comfortable for you to eat, swallow, and talk.

 

General dentist in Shreveport LA

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Taking Care of Your Smile through General Dentistry

One of the greatest gifts you can give yourself is taking care of your oral health throughout your life. Practicing a consistent dental hygiene routine and maintaining regular visits to your general dentist are the best ways to increase your chances of a beautiful, healthy smile.

General dentists focus on preventive care and treating minor problems before they have a chance to worsen into serious issues. Even if you regularly brush and floss your teeth, plaque and tartar can be quick to develop. A dentist has the necessary tools and training to remove damaging deposits before they harm your smile. In addition to professional cleanings and examinations, most general dentists fill cavities, perform root canals, whiten teeth, and even offer additional cosmetic dental procedures like dental implants or veneers.

One of the main reasons for routine examinations is to identify various problems. One common issue that you want your general dentist to catch early is gum disease. When it is treated soon after it starts, you are more likely to avoid bone deterioration or tooth loss. The early stage of gum disease is called gingivitis and can be handled by your dentist with simple techniques. If it advances to periodontitis, that’s when bone or tooth loss become a possibility and more invasive procedures like scaling or root planing may be required.

Once you make your dental appointment, which is typically recommended every six months, make sure you keep your scheduled visit. Many patients fall victim to scheduling appointments and then cancelling, not realizing how important seeing your general dentist can be. If you have dental insurance, you can even use your dental benefits for examinations and treatments. This Shreveport dental office accepts Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Louisiana, MetLife, and Cigna.

Choose the dentists at Broadmoor Family Dentistry and establish a long-term relationship now, so that you can enjoy your healthy and appealing smile for years to come.

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Typical Services in General Dentistry

There is no good excuse for neglecting regular visits to your general dentist. It’s the best way to keep your oral health in tip-top shape so that you can enjoy the benefits of a lifelong attractive and functional smile. General dentists offer a broad range of services. These fall into several categories: preventive and diagnostic, restorative, and cosmetic. Each grouping has its own procedures and treatments that allow the dentist to cater to those dental goals.

Preventive and Diagnostic
The goal of preventive dentistry is to stop dental issues from developing or worsening. Typical preventive procedures include thorough examinations, applying dental sealants to protect teeth, scaling to remove plaque and tartar with an ultrasonic tool, and fluoride treatments to help prevent tooth decay. Diagnostic tools are employed to identify issues that are not as easy to spot upon examination, such as X-rays and oral cameras.

Restorative
Correcting existing dental problems is the purpose of restorative treatment. General dentists perform many procedures that fall into this category, some of which are:

  • Fillings to repair cavities and restore tooth function, or to repair tooth chips or breaks
  • Root canal therapy to remove infected tooth pulp and replace it with safe material that serves to save a badly damaged tooth
  • Dental implants that are inserted into the jaw bone to simulate a new tooth root for a missing tooth, and an artificial tooth on top to give you back full function and appearance
  • Crowns to cover a damaged tooth with a natural looking and feeling restoration, while saving the existing tooth

Cosmetic
The focus of cosmetic dental procedures is on the aesthetics of your smile. Veneers, teeth whitening, metal filling replacement, bonding, gum contouring, orthodontics, and more all play a role in cosmetic dentistry.

Insurance
Keep in mind that dental insurance may be an important aspect of care for you and your family. If so, the dentists at Broadmoor Family Dental in Shreveport, LA are happy to help by accepting insurance coverage from Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Louisiana, MetLife, and Cigna. Speak to our office staff today to see if your dental plan applies.

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Explaining Root Canal Treatment

A toothache can make everything seem terrible. Your mouth hurts, your head aches, you can’t eat what you want, you can’t sleep comfortably – in general, you feel awful! Your tooth pain may be a result of decay that has caused an infection in your tooth pulp, calling for root canal therapy.

What does that mean exactly? When the inside of your tooth or the pulp becomes infected, it causes the tooth to deteriorate and cause pain and sensitivity. Action is needed to eliminate the infection and protect the tooth from worse damage. Root canal treatment is the best solution because the damaged pulp is removed and the inside of the tooth is thoroughly cleaned and restored.

To accomplish a root canal procedure, your dentist will drill a small hole in your tooth to access the pulp and expertly remove it. Once the area is cleaned and disinfected, your tooth will be filled with a special material and sealed for protection. Finally, a dental crown is usually placed on top to complete the root canal procedure. You are left with a fully repaired and protected tooth.

What benefits does root canal treatment provide?

  • Pain is eliminated with the repair of your tooth and removal of infection.
  • Your ability to chew and bite foods will return to normal.
  • You will no longer experience tooth sensitivity to hot or cold items.
  • The damaged tooth will be restored so that it looks natural in your smile.
  • Your other teeth won’t have excessive wear to make up for the damaged tooth.

With the advances in dentistry making root canal therapy faster and less painful, your procedure may be completed in as little as one trip to Broadmoor Family Dental in Shreveport LA.   Once the process is complete, you can expect your fully restored tooth to last as long as the rest of your teeth.

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Don’t Underestimate the Value of Good Oral Hygiene

You may think keeping your teeth clean is just a matter of appearances. However, unclean teeth are a haven for germs and bacteria that can cause a host of more serious problems. Maintaining good daily oral hygiene habits, as well as a regular schedule of professional cleanings, can help in the following ways:

  • Brushing twice a day will help eliminate the bacteria and debris that leads to tooth decay and cavities.
  • Proactive dental hygiene stops the onset of more serious dental problems that would require extensive and costly treatments and procedures.
  • Maintaining regular dental hygiene stops tooth loss by preventing the advancement of gum disease that can affect the bone and cause a tooth to loosen and fall out.
  • Proper oral care helps prevent bad breath by keeping your mouth fresh and free from bacteria that can cause halitosis.
  • Using a good quality, whitening toothpaste will brighten your teeth and improve the appearance and quality of your smile.
  • Keeping your teeth clean helps prevent disease and infection that can directly impact not only your oral health, but your overall general health. Dental problems are proven to affect other areas of your body and contribute to other, more serious, medical conditions.

Treat your teeth with the same care you treat the rest of your body. Keeping your mouth and teeth clean is a healthy practice that has many benefits to both your oral and general health. Regular and thorough teeth cleaning will help avoid gingivitis and decay and help you present a healthy smile to the world.

 

Schedule your dental check at our Shreveport, LA dental office

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Teeth Whitening Myths

Teeth whitening is one of the easiest, most popular ways to brighten a dingy smile. Many factors can cause teeth to darken or stain, including the foods you eat, beverages you drink, some types of medications, and tobacco use. If you are considering teeth whitening to improve your smile, you may have heard conflicting information about whitening treatments. Having the correct information will help you determine which type of teeth whitening is best for your situation. Some of the myths about teeth whitening include:

  • All teeth whitening treatments are equal. In fact, professional teeth whitening treatments performed by a qualified dentist are considerably more effective than over-the-counter whitening products.
  • All teeth whiten equally. In fact, every person will have a different result from teeth whitening. Yellow teeth tend to whiten better than gray teeth. One person’s teeth may whiten dramatically more than another person using the same type of whitening treatment.
  • Whitening takes weeks to show results. In reality, many professional whitening treatments will begin to brighten teeth within hours. Even some over-the-counter products will show whitening effects almost immediately.
  • You cannot over-whiten teeth. The truth is, there are some risks to teeth whitening, including tooth sensitivity and damage to the tooth roots. For this reason, whitening under the supervision of a qualified dental professional is highly recommended.

Whether you choose to whiten at home with an over-the-counter product or in-office whitening by your dentist, it is always a good idea to consult with your dental professional before attempting any whitening treatment. The dentists at Broadmoor Family Dental in Shreveport can advise you about the best type of whitening procedure to achieve your desired result of a fresh, beautiful smile.

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Dealing With Pain Following Root Canal Therapy

Root canal treatments are specifically designed to relieve the tooth pain associated with an infected tooth root. Patients come in with pain, and often leave the procedure with less discomfort than before. However, if you’ve recently had a root canal treatment on one or more of your teeth, you might be experiencing discomfort following the procedure. Fortunately, there are things you can do at home to take care of it.

Are your gums sore, tender or swollen surrounding the affected tooth? This is likely the result of the tiny metal clips that affix a rubber dam around the tooth, protecting it and protecting your mouth. The clips are attached along the gum line, and can leave tiny bruises or sometimes small cuts in the soft gum tissue. This pain should alleviate within two days of the treatment.

Is the tooth itself sore? This is a common occurrence and is typically the result of an inflammation of the mouth tissues that encase the tooth root. The tools used by the endodontist to perform the procedure can irritate the tissues.

Both of these types of pain can be dealt with by several over-the-counter analgesics. The ones that are most recommended to treat dental pain are those that possess anti-inflammatory agents: naproxen sodium, ibuprofen or aspirin, etc. If you are also taking narcotics prescribed by your dentist, do not take any further medication, over-the-counter or prescription, until you have checked with your dentist. Dangerous reactions can occur.

If you have been prescribed antibiotics, do not stop until you have completed each recommended dose. This ensures that your tooth remains free of infection and can heal thoroughly.

Ask your endodontist if you have other concerns about treating your post-root canal treatment pain.

 

If you live in the Shreveport, LA and you need root canal treatment, contact our office today.

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Maintaining Hybrid Dentures

Hybrid dentures, also known as fixed-removable dentures, are an option for replacing missing teeth and gum tissue with a prosthesis that is attached to dental implants. Hybrid dentures are an attractive option for patients who have extensive bone deterioration in the jaw. Once placed, the implants will take several months to fuse with the bone. When hybrid dentures have had time to heal, you will want to follow some basic care instructions to maintain their function and keep your mouth healthy:

  • Maintain excellent oral hygiene by brushing and flossing a minimum of twice daily.
  • Visit your dentist for regular checkups to have the area around your implants properly cleaned and examined.
  • Refrain from smoking or using tobacco products, which can cause long-term problems with inflammation, gum disease, and bone health.
  • Maintain proper nutrition and a healthy weight.
  • Take calcium and vitamin D supplements to help ensure excellent bone density.
  • Keep your dentist informed of any medications you are taking that could affect your bone density and health.

Practicing excellent oral hygiene and taking care of your overall health will protect you from gum disease or other issues that could cause the failure of your dental implants and hybrid dentures. With hybrid dentures, the teeth will eventually wear out and need to be replaced, but maintaining proper care for your dentures will extend their life and protect your investment and your beautiful smile.

 

Contact our dental office in Shreveport, LA if you are considering hybrid dentures.

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Ignoring Oral Hygiene is Asking For Trouble

You might think that brushing once a day is okay. If you haven’t had a cavity in a while, you can forget how easily your teeth can begin to decay. Plaque begins forming within hours of food consumption, attracting bacteria in less than twelve hours. These bacteria can become seriously problematic overtime, leading to tooth decay, cavities and gum disease.

Gingivitis is a very common result of plaque buildup at the gum line. The bacteria present cause the soft gum tissues to become inflamed. You might notice that you bleed during brushing or flossing. If left untreated, this gingivitis can turn into periodontitis.

Periodontitis is a serious infection of the gum tissue that leads to bone loss around the affected tooth. This infection can spread to surrounding teeth where it will erode them over time through a process known as demineralization. Acids released by accumulated plaque demineralize the tooth’s surface, leading to cavities. In a normal mouth, saliva plays a role in preventing cavities by neutralizing the acid produced by the plaque’s bacteria, but when built-up plaque prevents the saliva from contacting the tooth’s surface, it can’t help fight the acid.

Professional checkups and cleanings work to prevent the buildup of plaque and help prevent the decay of a tooth. Going to your dentist every six months for these professional cleanings is extremely important, but your at-home oral hygiene routine is equally important. You should be brushing at least twice a day, and flossing before bedtime. Rinse your mouth following sugary snacks or drinks and change your toothbrush every six weeks.

You are able to effect a real change in the condition of your mouth through your own action or inaction. Make the right choices and focus on beginning and continuing a lifetime habit of good oral hygiene, and you’ll enjoy a lifetime of good oral health.

 

Contact our Shreveport dental office to schedule a cleaning today.

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Risks of Over-the-Counter Teeth Whitening

Professional teeth whitening is an easy and popular cosmetic dental procedure that can leave you with a winning smile. However, many people try to avoid a trip to the dentist by using one of the many do-it-yourself teeth whitening treatments available to purchase at their local drugstore. While over-the-counter teeth whitening products can be effective, there are some mistakes you can make that will produce less than desirable results.

  • Patients who try to whiten unhealthy teeth can risk damaging teeth and nerves. The bleaching agents used in whitening products can creep into compromised teeth and cause pain and even more damage. It is always wise to have a thorough dental examination and cleaning before using a whitening treatment.
  • Using whitening mouthwashes that are exceptionally high in alcohol content can damage teeth and usually do not produce optimal results.
  • Leaving whitening strips on longer than recommended on the directions can cause splotchy results and increased tooth sensitivity.
  • Using whitening systems more than every six months can have the reverse effect and cause your teeth to lose their healthy shine.
  • Patients who use teeth whitening treatments that are not approved by the FDA risk damaging not only their dental health, but their overall health due to the possibility they contain dangerous chemicals.
  • Patients with dental crowns or bonding who use teeth whitening products will find their restorations do not whiten, leaving them with an uneven smile.

While it’s possible to achieve a satisfactory result from over-the-counter teeth whitening, to guarantee the results you desire without the worry of these risks, visit our Shreveport LA dental office to learn more about professional whitening. When performed by a qualified dental professional, teeth whitening can produce dramatic results in as little as one office visit, allowing you to walk out with a winning smile.

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Results You Can Expect From Root Canal Treatment

If you’re about to have a root canal treatment, you might be full of questions. Historically, especially on television and in movies, root canal therapies are often characterized as extremely painful and torturous to undergo. In fact, this is completely opposite from the truth. Patients who require a root canal treatment are often in extreme pain prior to the procedure and have virtually none afterward. Here are some of the symptoms you can expect after completing your root canal treatment.

The soft gum tissue area around the affected tooth may be sore. This is a result of the dental dam used to isolate your tooth and catch any bits of debris that are dislodged as the dentist works. This tenderness shouldn’t last longer than forty-eight hours.

If your mouth is still numb from your treatment, don’t eat anything. You could end up chewing your cheek or tongue, or you could seriously burn yourself on too hot foods or liquids without realizing it until later. Don’t eat anything on the affected tooth until you get the go-ahead from your dentist, as you don’t want to damage the restoration work.

Do not drive while under the influence of any narcotic painkiller. Try not to email, phone or text while taking a narcotic, as you might say something you would regret later.

If you have been prescribed antibiotics, take your entire course. This will ensure that your mouth is free of infection and that your root canal procedure will have a long life.

If you begin to experience any serious pain that cannot be fully treated with your prescribed analgesics, or if you begin to run a fever, contact your dentist immediately. Other signs of a problem could be a feeling of looseness, or the filling falling out. Any sign of breaking or cracking or of swelling that extends up your cheek is an indication to call your dentist.

Root canal treatments are performed across the world each day, safely and effectively. With proper care, your treatment will go well and leave you pain free with a healthy mouth.  If you need a root canal and live in the Shreveport area, contact our office to schedule your appointment.

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Oral Surgery Frequently Asked Questions

2015-3If oral surgery is in your future, you might be worried about what’s to come. The way to relieve that worry is to talk to your oral surgeon. Your oral surgeon has the experience and knowledge necessary to guide you through whatever concerns or questions you may have. Here is a guide to some of those questions and answers:

How will I handle pain following surgery?

  • In many cases, you will have been prescribed narcotic pain relievers. If you are taking narcotics, take them only as recommended and do not mix them with over-the-counter pain relievers or alcohol. Driving while on narcotics is dangerous and can have serious consequences for you personally and for others. If you weren’t prescribed any medication, use anti-inflammatory analgesics such as ibuprofen or naproxen sodium.

What will happen to my stitches in the days following surgery?

  • Some stitches will be designed to dissolve over time and will not need to be removed. Others will not come out on their own and will need to be removed at a subsequent appointment. In many cases, losing a single stitch or two in the days following surgery isn’t serious; however, for bone-graft treatments, it is problematic and you should contact your surgeon immediately.

Can I eat normally after surgery?

  • Immediately after surgery when you’re still experiencing any mouth or tongue numbness, don’t eat anything. You could mistake the soft tissues of your mouth for food and do serious damage to your mouth without realizing it. After your numbness subsides, consume soft foods of tepid temperatures for several days to allow for healing. Talk to your surgeon to learn when you can resume normal eating patterns as dictated by your particular surgery.

What other tips do you have?

  • Stay hydrated and rest as much as possible to facilitate complete and quick healing. Call our Shreveport dental office if you have excessive bleeding or pain that doesn’t lessen with time. Be aware of signs of infection (swelling, redness, odorous or sour discharge) at the surgical site and seek professional care when needed.
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Cosmetic Dentistry Treatments for Special Occasions

Most people have things about their smiles they’d like to fix. Maybe the things are minor or perhaps they are major, but most of them can be addressed with some form of cosmetic dentistry. You may have been unhappy for a while with the smile you see in the mirror, but just haven’t felt the necessary impetus to schedule an appointment with a cosmetic dentist.

To get that jump start toward your dental treatment, look ahead in your life. Maybe you have a class reunion coming up, or maybe a friend’s wedding. Perhaps there’s a job interview, first date or anniversary approaching. These special occasions are all excellent reasons to turn to cosmetic dentistry treatments. Here are some of the most common procedures that could be used to transform your smile.

  • Teeth whitening – perhaps the most popular and common cosmetic dentistry procedure, it utilizes light-activated bleaching chemicals that can lighten natural teeth and remove stains and discoloration.
  • Dental veneers – very thin, wafer-shaped shells crafted out of porcelain or another material that are bonded onto the natural surface of the tooth. Sometimes a thin layer of the natural tooth enamel must be removed in order to accommodate the application of the veneer.
  • Dental bonding – composite resin mixed to match the color of your tooth and then molded by hand onto the tooth’s surface to create the illusion of a complete natural tooth.
  • Dental crowns – restorative dental therapy that protects and preserves a natural tooth that has had a root canal treatment.
  • Enameloplasty – the correction of malformations of a natural tooth through hand-shaping. This is also the name for the removal of the tooth’s surface required for most types of dental veneers.

All of these cosmetic treatments will transform your smile for that special occasion. Get the bright, straight, white smile you want people to remember with the help of a little cosmetic dentistry at our Shreveport Louisiana dental office.

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Convenience and Your Family Dentist

Life isn’t getting any slower, in fact, it seems that it’s always speeding up! This is never truer than it is for families, especially those with two or more children. Parents can feel like the local taxi service, running one child to band and another to piano and yet another to a doctor’s appointment. Finally, there’s a solution to one of the trickier issues: visiting the dentist.

In the past, parents would go to one dentist and the children would go to another. Those same children would later age out of their pediatric dentist and have to form a new relationship with a dentist who doesn’t know them at all! For young people just beginning to take responsibility for their own dental care, this can be the beginning of spotty or not-at-all visits to the dentist for checkups and cleanings. This can be the beginning of poor oral hygiene that leads to scores of adult problems.

A family dentist wants you to skip all that running around and to have your kids avoid the step of finding a new dentist. A family dentist wants to see your entire family, from the youngest baby cutting teeth to the oldest retiree looking at options for aging teeth. This type of relationship is so important. The family dentist will know the patient’s history going years and years back, and can make the best and most informed decisions based on this information.

Your family dentist will also make your family appointments in blocks. Can you imagine having each member of your family – including you – getting your checkups, cleanings and dental care done in the same day, sometimes at the very same time? This is a possibility with the convenience of a trusted family dentist.

If you’re looking to save time and to have the best possible dental care you can get for you and your family, contact the Shreveport, LA family dentists at Broadmoor Family Dental today. You won’t regret it!

 

 

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Dental Implants: The Most Advanced Choice for Tooth Restoration

If you have lost one or more teeth due to decay, disease or damage, you may be wondering what your options are for restoration. While there are several choices available to replace missing teeth, dental implants are considered the most innovative and advanced treatment option offered in dentistry today. A dental implant is a fabricated tooth root placed in the jawbone to secure a replacement tooth or bridge. With vigilant oral care, dental implants are highly successful and can last for a lifetime.

Dental implants are known to most closely act like your natural teeth. Their feel, function and appearance resemble that of a natural tooth. Unlike dentures, dental implants do not require special glues or adhesives. Implants are cared for exactly like your natural teeth, only requiring you to brush and floss normally and maintain regular dental checkups and cleanings.

Another benefit of dental implants is their ability to preserve your natural facial structure by preventing and slowing the bone resorption caused by tooth loss. Traditional dentures do not offer this advantage.

Patients who choose traditional dentures to replace missing teeth may also find they have trouble eating or speaking due to ill-fitting or slipping appliances. Because they function like natural teeth, with dental implants you will enjoy all your favorite foods and never have to worry about your dental appliance shifting or clicking.

Consult with Shreveport implant dentists at Broadmoor Family Dental to find out more about how dental implants can provide you with a lifelong solution to your missing teeth. Our dentists will assess your specific needs and determine if you are a good candidate for implants, so you can get back to enjoying life with a full set of healthy teeth.

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Getting Your Money’s Worth with Dental Insurance

At the end of each year, patients’ calendars begin to fill up with holiday activities. It can make scheduling appointments with your dentist a low priority for you; however, seeing your dentist before the year’s end can save you money. Here is how.

Have you used your dental insurance’s deductible this year? If you’ve had any kind of dental appointment during the prior year, you have already started chipping away at your deductible. Maybe you’ve already met it, and simply don’t know. By seeing the dentist and getting any additional dental work done before the end of the year, your insurance will cover a percentage of the cost. Waiting until after the New Year for treatment when your deductible has reset, however, will necessitate that you pay for most of your treatment out-of-pocket.

Another factor to consider is the annual maximum for dental treatment. Dental treatment will typically pay for a set amount of dental work each year, and beyond that will pay very little. If you need dental work, do it now and use up the rest of your annual maximum so that in the coming year, you’ll be able to start again with a new annual maximum.

Another reason to use every bit of your dental insurance is that putting off necessary dental treatments can worsen the problem, leading to more expensive and more invasive treatments.

Speak with the dentists at Broadmoor Family Dental in Shreveport, LA about your dental insurance. The office staff is highly trained in insurance issues and can help you make the most of your own dental insurance each year.

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Make Your Holidays Happier with a Smile Makeover

Are you dreading the annual family holiday photo because you are embarrassed by your smile? Do you avoid holiday party pics or even turn down invitations because you want to hide your smile? With the holidays fast approaching, there is no need to let an imperfect smile stop you from taking part in the fun. A smile makeover can quickly and easily improve the appearance of your smile, so you don’t have to miss out on the festivities.

Your smile makes a lasting impression on the world. Having a healthy, beautiful smile allows you to face the world with a more confident and happy demeanor. In cooperation with a qualified cosmetic dentist, a smile makeover offers many options to improve stained, chipped, uneven, crooked or gapped teeth. A smile makeover means you no longer have to fear the photographer.

A smile makeover can range from professional teeth whitening to porcelain veneers, cosmetic bonding, dental implants, or even a full-scale orthodontic treatment program. One or more of these treatments may be recommended to give you the beautiful new smile you desire. Many of these procedures can be completed in as little as one office visit, meaning your smile could be picture perfect in no time.

Before you deck the halls, schedule a consultation with the Shreveport cosmetic dentists at Broadmoor Family Dental to find out what you can do to improve your smile in time for that office holiday party or family photo session. With a smile makeover custom designed to fit your individual needs, you can rest assured your smile will project a beautiful, lasting impression to all your family and friends.

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Good Oral Hygiene: The Key to Preventing Root Canal Treatments

Did you ever go to the dentist and hope you were going to find out you needed root canal treatment? No one ever hoped that. Patients hope for beautiful, white, healthy teeth. They hope they go to a dental appointment for a cleaning and leave with nothing but a baggie containing floss and a new toothbrush, not with an appointment for more invasive work.

If you’re among the majority of dental patients who never, ever wants to have root canal therapy, there are things you can do to prevent the need for this type of treatment. The one vital step toward never having root canal treatment is to develop and maintain excellent oral hygiene habits. This includes brushing at least twice daily, after meals, and most importantly, before you go to bed at night. Flossing should take place every day, also at night, so that you can sleep restfully without food debris and bacteria multiplying in the hard-to-reach spaces between your teeth and gums.

Not only are the oral hygiene steps that you take important, but your diet is also important. If you don’t give your body the nutrition it needs, especially calcium, your teeth and bones will begin to weaken, and the quality of your oral health will decline.

If you are a smoker, it is vital for your oral health that you quit immediately. Smoking not only affects your mouth, but it affects your entire body and everyone around you. If you want to stop smoking but have been unsuccessful previously or don’t know where to start, ask your dentist for help.

Staying hydrated keeps your mouth tissues healthy. It provides nourishment to your skin, hair, nails and teeth. Swishing and spitting water immediately after meals can help reduce bacteria, acid and sugar on your teeth, especially if you’re not in the position to brush.

Following these tips can help prevent infection, cavities and decay that are the direct path to root canal treatments. Keep your mouth healthy with regular checkups and professional cleanings by your dentist.

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Are Dental Crowns Appropriate for Children?

If your child has a severely decayed baby tooth, you may think the best option would be to go ahead and extract it since they fall out eventually. However, primary teeth serve important functions including holding a space for permanent teeth and helping to guide those permanent teeth into place. Baby teeth also aid in the development of a child’s jawbone and facial muscles. When primary teeth are seriously compromised due to decay or trauma, your child’s dentist may recommend a restoration in the form of a crown.

Stainless steel crowns have been the restoration of choice for children for decades. Stainless steel crowns are most often used because they are strong, long-lasting, and easily placed. There are other options of crowns that are appropriate for primary teeth including:

  • Strip crowns are made with tooth-colored composite material and are most often used for front teeth.
  • Open-faced steel crowns are a variation of a stainless crown that is sliced away on the surface and filled in with tooth-colored material to provide a more natural look.
  • Veneered steel crowns have a tooth-colored cover affixed to the surface, which also creates a more natural look than with standard stainless steel crowns.
  • Zirconia crowns are made of a tough tooth-colored material that are pre-fabricated to set sizes and are utilized more often for front teeth.

Crowns to restore primary teeth can usually be placed in just one dental visit with the use of local anesthesia. Your child may experience some mild discomfort for a day after the crown is placed. If pain or discomfort persists for more than a few days, call your dental professional.

It is important for your child to undergo dental exams regularly. Kids with crowns should have them checked as often as four times per year to make sure the crown is secure and intact.

 

 

Kids dentist in Shreveport, LA

 

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Rejuvenating Your Smile with Teeth Whitening

Simple pleasures like enjoying a cup of coffee or sipping red wine can stain your teeth and leave you with a yellowed smile. Instead of giving up some of your favorite pastimes, you can restore your smile with professional teeth whitening. Home whitening options are available, but to achieve the fastest and most dramatic improvements, professional whitening methods are the way to go.

Teeth whitening is a quick and safe procedure, making it the most popular cosmetic dental procedure today. Some patients even have it done during their lunch break and go right back to work. It’s that easy! The process typically involves protecting your gums from becoming sensitive during treatment, and then applying a whitening solution to your teeth. The solution stays in place for a specific length of time and often a special ultraviolet light is shined on them to enhance the whitening process. Then your teeth are rinsed. The process might be repeated in some areas with severe stains, but the dental professional is careful not to over-whiten your teeth or cause discomfort.

You can choose the shade of white that you would like your teeth to be, and your cosmetic dentist will help you make the best choice. The goal should be to look natural and complement your skin tone. Since teeth whitening is a safe process, just about everyone is a candidate unless you have severely poor oral health. It is usually painless, although those with extremely sensitive teeth may have some discomfort that should dissipate shortly after treatment.

Rejuvenating your smile with teeth whitening is a simple way to make you look younger and enhance your smile. It also improves your self-esteem by giving you confidence in your appearance. A bright, white smile can be yours today through professional teeth whitening.

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Why You Should Use All of Your Dental Insurance Before the Year’s End

Having dental insurance is a wonderful thing for a dental patient; however, many patients each year miss out on utilizing the benefits that are available to them by neglecting to use their dental insurance before the end of the calendar year. Using your dental insurance can save you time and money regarding your teeth and the treatments you receive.

Be sure that you’re keeping track of your deductible. This deductible is the total money that you must pay for dental services before dental insurance begins to pay for services. This fee varies from policy to policy and might change dependent upon whether you’re seeing a dentist who is in or out of your insurance network. If you’ve met your deductible, see what additional dental work you might be able to get completely paid for or partially paid for by your insurance company.

Do you know what your yearly maximum is for dental treatment? A yearly maximum is the total amount of money your dental insurance will cover for your dental work within one complete year. Each year, the maximum resets and unused benefits do not roll over to next year.

If you’re paying for dental insurance, be certain you’re utilizing your benefits. Even if you don’t require dental treatments, you can still benefit from a regular checkup and professional cleaning. And remember, fees change each year, so your benefits and the costs associated with them can change. Use your benefits before you might pay more down the line.

Don’t let your 2015 dental insurance go unused. Schedule your consultation today at our Shreveport, LA dental office.

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Porcelain Veneers – Your Questions Answered For a Better Smile

Porcelain veneers are a cosmetic dentistry option to improve the appearance of your smile. This treatment utilizes thin shells of ceramic that are adhered directly to the front surfaces of your teeth. If you are considering porcelain veneers as a solution to your imperfect smile, here are some of your possible questions answered:

  • How will my veneers look? Porcelain veneers provide you with a realistic, bright and beautiful smile thanks to glass-like ceramic that closely resembles the translucent effect and color of natural tooth enamel.
  • What are the advantages of porcelain veneers? The natural look provided by porcelain veneers gives them a distinct advantage over other types of cosmetic dental bonds. Porcelain veneers are not susceptible to staining, with a surface that is smooth and impervious.
  • How should I prepare for porcelain veneers? The process of placing veneers is simple and requires little preparation on your part. Talk to your dentist about the procedure to make sure you know what to expect before and after your veneers are placed.
  • Why do I need porcelain veneers? Veneers are utilized to cosmetically enhance the appearance of chipped, misaligned, stained, or discolored teeth.
  • Can you explain the process of placing dental veneers? An experienced cosmetic dentist should be able to complete the placement process in no more than three visits. The first visit will be a consultation about the size and shape of veneers that would best suit your needs. At the second visit, your dentist will prepare your teeth by removing some enamel from the surface of the teeth and placing temporary veneers. The last visit will be to place your permanent veneers.

If you are suffering from teeth imperfections that cause you concern and embarrassment, porcelain veneers may be the solution to your problem. Consult with the cosmetic dentists at Broadmoor Family Dental in Shreveport LA to learn more about porcelain veneers and how they can help you achieve a better, brighter smile.

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How to Care for Your Hybrid Dentures Properly

Do you have hybrid dentures? You definitely want to take care of them so they’ll last a lifetime. Your oral hygiene habits can make all the difference to the longevity of your hybrid dentures, as can your diet and personal habits. Learning how to care for them properly is essential.

First and foremost, you’ll need to remember to brush and floss. Brush twice daily, at minimum, and floss once, preferably just before bed. Never sleep with a dirty mouth! You’ll just allow bacteria to grow that could lead to implant failure down the line. See your dentist regularly for checkups and professional cleanings.

Do not use tobacco products or smoke. Dipping and smoking are extremely bad for your teeth and for your overall oral and physical health. Hybrid denture wearers who smoke can have complications such as gum inflammation, redness, gum disease and poor bone health, all issues directly linked to smoking. You need to stop smoking. Talk to your dentist if you’re trying to quit and need help.

Eat healthily and well to ensure that you’re receiving proper nutrition to build optimum teeth and bones. Protect your mouth by keeping your mind and body fit.

Keep feeding your bones with calcium and vitamin D supplements. Your bone density depends upon your heath and consumption of these two vital supplements. Female patients over the age of sixty-five are especially encouraged to take these supplements to maintain optimal bone density.

Talk to the dentists at Broadmoor Family dental in Shreveport LA to determine if you’re doing everything you can to ensure a long life for your hybrid dentures.

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Tooth Abscess: The Potential Outcome of Avoiding Root Canal Treatment

When a tooth become severely decayed, it can cause an infection in the pulp chamber at the interior of your tooth. This type of infection inside a tooth is called a tooth abscess. If the bacteria goes untreated and is allowed to multiply, it can even spread into your jaw bone or neck. Abscesses can result from severe decay, mouth trauma, or long-term teeth grinding or jaw clenching. No matter the cause, a tooth abscess is a serious situation that requires treatment.

Symptoms of an abscess
The first sign of an abscessed tooth for most patients is pain. It can occur when you eat or when you press on the tooth, and can also cause jaw pain if the infection has spread. Another sign is the tooth becoming a darker color than the teeth around it. Swelling is another common symptom of a tooth abscess, and can occur in your mouth, jaw, or neck. A pimple containing pus on the gum near the problem tooth is a clear sign of infection.

Diagnosing an abscess
Patients who experience symptoms should realize that something is wrong and see a dentist right away. An examination and tests such as X-rays will diagnose the abscess. Patients who neglect visiting the dentist out of fear of treatment should realize that untreated infection can become extremely serious, affecting your overall health. Your dentist can offer options for your comfort such as sedation to get you through the process if you are anxious.

Treating an abscess
Usually oral antibiotics are prescribed to treat the infection. Then your dentist or endodontist will perform root canal therapy to clean out the tooth, eliminate infection, and seal the tooth to prevent future infections. Often a crown is placed on top of the tooth to complete the process. Root canal treatment is not as scary as its reputation, and the benefits of saving your tooth and correcting the abscess are invaluable.

If you live in the Shreveport LA area and you need a root canal, contact our office to schedule a consultation.

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Tips for a Brighter Smile

White teeth are a sign of beauty and health. Having pearly whites shows that you take pride in your appearance and gives you a confident air. There are many ways to achieve a brighter smile; here are some tips to help you get that shiny glow.

Professional whitening is a sure-fire way to brighten your smile by numerous shades. In only an hour, your smile can go from dull and dingy to white and polished. Your dental professional can guide you in the best ways to enhance your look with tools such as lasers or whitening trays. Professional methods are the quickest route to a dramatic improvement in the shade of your teeth.

If you prefer methods in your own home, drugstores have lots of options. Whitening strips, gels, and toothpastes are only a few of the choices available. These typically require consistent use for an extended period, but they can improve the color of your teeth with proper use. Follow the instructions carefully for the best results.

There are also natural ways to whiten your teeth at home. Rubbing your teeth with the back of a lemon or orange peel can help, and adding a little salt can make it even more effective. Strawberries may be directly rubbed onto your teeth, or made into a paste by mashing them up with a little water and then brushing onto your teeth for five minutes. Each of these methods should be followed by thorough rinsing of the mouth to eliminate residue or acids left behind.

Baking soda is a proven ingredient to help brighten your smile. Mixing baking soda and water to form a paste that can then be brushed onto your teeth is a great tip. Follow up by rinsing with water or hydrogen peroxide, and then brushing normally with toothpaste.

Consult with Shreveport, LA dentists Dr. Cooper and Dr. Banker to make sure you aren’t harming your teeth or mouth when you try any whitening methods yourself. If you experience pain, stop and ask your dentist for advice. Do not use over-the-counter or professional whitening methods during pregnancy without consulting your doctor first.

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Why Dental Implants are a Great Choice to Replace Missing Teeth

If your smile is incomplete due to tooth loss, you are probably facing a decision about the best way to restore your smile. Dentures or bridges have been the most common options in the past, but they are accompanied with some hassles that many patients dislike. Another option is removable false teeth called flippers, but most don’t consider that a good long-term solution. An increasingly popular alternative is dental implants, which are surgically inserted into your jaw to become a permanent restoration. More and more patients are finding implants to be the ideal choice.

The most obvious reason that patients like implants is their natural appearance. Their permanent placement in your smile means they don’t move in your mouth, so there is no slipping out of their correct location. Implants are individual teeth, not connected to any neighboring teeth, so they look just like natural teeth. The crown used as part of the implant process is chosen in the same shade as adjacent teeth, so it doesn’t stick out in your smile.

Perhaps the biggest selling point over the other options is the structure of dental implants. They are firmly attached to your jaw with titanium rods, providing the same level of strength and support as real teeth. You can eat, chew, laugh, and speak with the same level of confidence as natural teeth. This is a big difference from restoration choices like dentures or flippers.

Another benefit of dental implants is their durability. Their strong connection to your jaw bone and long-lasting materials used make implants capable of lasting forever in your smile. Implants don’t require any extra care or maintenance either. Regular dental checkups and proper oral hygiene are all that is needed to keep your restoration secure, healthy, and attractive for life.

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Get an Instant Smile Makeover with No-Prep Veneers

Veneers have become an increasingly popular treatment in cosmetic dentistry for rejuvenating imperfect smiles. The appearance of teeth that are uneven, damaged or discolored can be greatly improved with veneers. The placement of traditional veneers involves preparing the tooth by shaving a layer of enamel off to make room for thin layers of porcelain to be bonded directly to the tooth surface. Temporary veneers are placed while a dental laboratory creates the permanent set of veneers. This process usually requires two to three visits to your dentist over the course of several weeks or more.

For patients who are looking for a faster, easier option, no-prep veneers may be an excellent alternative. No-prep veneers offer the same cosmetic benefits as traditional veneers, but without the extensive preparatory work. Most no-prep veneers, like Lumineers and Vivaneers, require no changes to the structure of the tooth or reduction in the existing tooth enamel. All of your natural teeth remain intact and unchanged, making them an excellent choice for patients who do not wish to have their permanent teeth altered. The process of placing no-prep veneers can be completed in a single office visit.

Unlike traditional veneers that alter the tooth structure, no-prep veneers are able to be removed without replacement. Once traditional veneers have been placed, you will always need to replace them with another set of veneers. No-prep veneers are highly versatile, and can be worn over a crown, bridge or dentures. No-prep veneers are also extremely durable, and with proper care could last as long as twenty years.

For a quick but effective and long-term solution to your smile imperfections, consult with your Shreveport LA dentists at Broadmoor Family Dental to find out if you are a good candidate for no-prep veneers. With no-prep veneers, in just one day you could be sporting a brand new smile.

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Give Your Smile a Boost with Teeth Whitening

White, beautiful smiles are desirable to most people. Who wouldn’t want a nice smile? A discolored smile comes with age, and if your teeth are looking dingy, you can look older than you are. White teeth are a sign of overall health, and a white smile shows your health to everyone you encounter.

Drinking dark liquids such as tea, red wine, dark sodas or coffee can leave your teeth stained. Eating foods like dark berries, beets or balsamic vinegar or soy sauce can also be detrimental to your smile’s brightness. Smoking is one of the worst things you can do to your teeth and to your mouth and body. Ask your dentist or doctor for help stopping smoking.

If you feel good about your smile, you are more relaxed around others. You aren’t afraid to speak in public or to eat and laugh. Your smile projects to everyone that you are healthy and attractive and confident in your person. Whether you’re looking for personal or professional enhancement, you can get closer to your goals with an appealing smile.

Look ahead a month or more. What’s on your schedule? A family reunion? Holidays? Class pictures? A wedding? These events, as well as job interviews or first dates, are all reasons to get your teeth whitened.

Many times, your family, friends and coworkers won’t be able to tell what you’ve had done. They’ll simply think you look like yourself, only better somehow. Maybe they’ll ask if you lost weight or had a cosmetic treatment, when the only change is just how you’re reacting to possessing a brighter, whiter smile.

Talk to the Shreveport, LA dentists at Broadmoor Family Dental today to see what benefits teeth whitening can bring to you and to your life. Get that increased self-confidence you’ve been seeking with a more attractive smile.

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Do You Need Oral Surgery to Remove Impacted Wisdom Teeth?

Evolution has rendered wisdom teeth useless, and a high percentage of these unnecessary molars eventually require removal. When a wisdom tooth, otherwise known as a third molar, cannot erupt into proper alignment, it is called impacted. Oral surgery to extract impacted wisdom teeth may be considered if you have the following problems:

  • Mouth pain and bite problems caused by damage to surrounding teeth created from crowding caused by the extra molars.
  • Jaw and nerve damage caused by cysts that form around the impacted wisdom teeth.
  • Sinus pain, pressure and congestion resulting from problems with wisdom teeth.
  • Inflamed and infected gum tissue created because the area around impacted wisdom teeth is difficult to clean properly.
  • Cavities which develop due to infected gums that allow pockets to form between gums, allowing bacteria to grow.
    Alignment issues that alter the effects of braces, bridges, crowns and partial dentures due the crowding created by impacted wisdom teeth.

To diagnose impacted wisdom teeth, your dental professional will look for signs of infection or swollen gums. Your dentist will also inquire about your regular oral hygiene habits. The diagnosis of impacted wisdom teeth can be confirmed with dental x-rays, which may also reveal damage to the other teeth or jawbone.

When making a decision with your dentist about wisdom tooth extraction, it’s important to consider your age. Typically third molars erupt between the ages of 16 and 25 years. Younger patients experience considerably fewer complications with oral surgery for wisdom tooth extraction than older adults.

To learn more about wisdom teeth removal at our Shreveport LA dental office, schedule a consultation today.

 

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Fixing Your Dental Concerns With Porcelain Veneers

Porcelain veneers are a popular cosmetic dental treatment utilizing thin shells of ceramic that are attached to the front of teeth for an immediate smile transformation. Dental veneers are non-invasive restorations that are easily applied and create a natural appearance. Porcelain veneers are long-lasting, resistant to staining, and are used to mask a multitude of cosmetic dental issues including:

  • Yellowed, stained, or dingy teeth that are unresponsive to professional whitening treatments
  • Gaps or unattractive spaces between teeth that cannot be corrected by braces
  • Misaligned, crowded, or unevenly spaced teeth
  • Imperfections such as larger chips or cracks or broken teeth
  • Worn down or irregularly shaped teeth
  • Teeth that are too short and do not match the length of the adjacent teeth

The placement of porcelain veneers can correct and cover a host of cosmetic dental problems at once, creating a white, even, smooth and balanced smile. To place the veneers, your dentist will reshape your natural teeth, creating the proper surface to adhere thin layers of porcelain over the teeth. These durable shells are bonded to the front of teeth changing their color, shape, size, or length. Once the porcelain veneers are placed, your cosmetic dental flaws will be a thing of the past. With vigilant oral care, you can expect your new veneers to last five to fifteen years, at which time they will need to be replaced. Consult with Broadmoor Family Dental  to learn more about how porcelain veneers can help return your smile to its beautiful best.

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How Dental Implants Changed Dentures Forever

If you’ve been wearing dentures for a while, you may have some complaints. They might fit poorly and shift or click when you talk or eat. Poor fit can lead to discomfort and sores in the mouth that worsen over time, or they can collect food underneath them, leading to bad breath.

If this sounds familiar to you, there might be alternatives for you. One of the newest developments in dentures is the pairing of standard dentures with dental implants. The dental implants are placed directly into your jawbone, providing the kind of stability only previously offered by natural teeth. Dentures fixed in the mouth with dental implants become something new: hybrid dentures.

Dentures that utilize dental implants as their anchors are very stable. They enable denture wearers to enjoy foods previously denied them, such as crisp, healthy foods or chewy cuts of meat. Eliminating the food restrictions present for many denture wearers allows them to eat a wider variety of foods, helping to reduce the risk of poor nutrition and the poor health associated with it, including digestion difficulties.

Because of this increased stability, the denture itself can be made smaller. A standard denture covers the roof of the mouth completely, inhibiting the taste and texture of foods. A denture designed around dental implants, however, has an open roof and facilitates a greater enjoyment of foods of all kinds, as well as a more natural feel for your tongue.

Dental implants also stimulate bone by mimicking natural tooth roots. This stimulation allows the bone to continue to be strong and alive, whereas the bones of the face can begin to shrink once a tooth has been extracted. This bone shrinkage leads directly to poor denture fit. Dental implants used with dentures avoid this issue.

If you are a denture wearer and you’d like to see some changes in how your dentures fit, schedule a consultation with the dentists at Broadmoor Family Dental in Shreveport LA to see how using dental implants can improve your denture experience.

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Why Your Smile Makeover Can Change Everything

When you meet someone for the first time, they notice things about you: your hair, your eyes, your handshake, but most of all they notice your smile. A bright, even smile, freely given, can leave the most positive impression you can make on a stranger. It sends a message of friendliness, confidence and ease. As you continue speaking to that stranger, your smile, your ready laugh and your comfortable manner all send the right signals of health and well-being.

When you don’t have a nice smile, that confidence is lacking. Smiles become tight-lipped, heads are bowed down and laughter is smaller and speech can become clipped. You avoid eating in public and when you do, you cover your mouth constantly with your hand to hide your teeth. Bad breath from bad teeth could lead you to fear getting close with someone. The message sent here is one of avoidance and embarrassment and shame.

Bad teeth and poor oral health can hold us back in our personal lives as well as our professional ones. Smiles that are decayed and unattractive send signals that we never intend. Correct or not, they can indicate histories of poverty, a lack of education or poor hygiene habits. These indications, even when they’re wrong, can lead to being passed over for promotions, for dates or for a variety of social opportunities.

Don’t be this person. Take steps now to work with a cosmetic dentist to change everything you don’t like about your smile. From large changes to small ones, a skilled cosmetic dentist can makeover your smile to be the bright, beautiful smile you’ve always desired.

Whether you need to correct some cavities and to revamp your oral hygiene habits at home, or if you need braces to correct alignment issues, a cosmetic dentist can help you. Dental veneers can change the color, shape and length of one or more teeth, and missing or gapped teeth can be replaced with dental implants or dental bridges.

Don’t let your smile hold you back another minute. Talk to the cosmetic dentists at Broadmoor Family dental in Shreveport LA today about your smile makeover.

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Single Tooth Dental Implant

If you have lost a tooth due to injury, disease, or decay, you may be wondering what your options are for restoration. The best, long-term solution for restoring your single missing tooth is a dental implant fitted with a crown. A single tooth dental implant replaces both the natural tooth, as well as the tooth’s root.

A dental implant allows you to replace a missing tooth without altering the state of surrounding teeth. Common alternative treatments, such as the placement of a tooth-supported bridge, require neighboring teeth to be filed or cut down into peg shapes to support the appliance. Those compromised teeth are more susceptible to decay and bone loss. However, dental implants do not require such alterations, thus preserving the healthy teeth. The placement of an implant involves placing a small titanium post into the jawbone, which provides an anchor for the placement of the implant. This artificial “root” attaches to the bone and gums to become a base for a crown.

You may be tempted to avoid restoring one missing tooth; however, leaving it untreated can result in bone loss, altered chewing capability, and an overall unappealing appearance to your smile. For these reasons, it would be wise to consider an individual dental implant to replace your single missing tooth. With proper oral hygiene and regular dental care, single tooth implants can last as long as 25 years. Schedule a consultation with Broadmoor Family Dental to determine if you are a good candidate for a single tooth dental implant to replace your missing tooth and restore your healthy smile.

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Who Can Benefit From Dental Veneers?

Are you unhappy with your smile? Are you looking to improve the shape or color of your teeth but don’t know where to start? Dental veneers may be the best choice for you. Dental veneers are extremely thin, wafer-like shells of porcelain or some other material that are adhered to the front surface of your teeth in order to create the perfect smile you want.

Dental veneers are able to correct a host of dental imperfections, such as teeth that are gapped, crooked, chipped, broken or discolored. Teeth that are losing enamel or are uneven or misshapen can be corrected with veneers, as can teeth that are very short or smiles that are “gummy.”

Dental veneers are an extremely popular choice for correcting common dental cosmetic issues, and can even take the place of braces in some patients, providing a white, even smile in days, not years.

Dental veneers are extremely natural-looking, and if applied properly, only your dentist and you will know your secret. They can be made in very bright, white shades and are tolerated very well by the soft tissues of the mouth. They are stain-resistant and will remain brighter and whiter for longer than your natural teeth will. Advances in materials have allowed the veneer shell to become more and more thin, requiring that less of the natural tooth be worked away to make room for the veneer.

Typically, veneers last about ten years, but if you care for them properly, they can last much longer. You will care for your veneers exactly as you would your natural teeth, including brushing and flossing regularly, especially before sleeping at night.

If you are thinking about pursuing veneers as part of your smile goals, contact cosmetic dentists at Broadmoor Family Dental in Shreveport, LA today. This is especially true if it’s been years since you inquired regarding veneers. So much has changed in the last few years that you might be surprised at how much dental veneers could benefit you and your smile.

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