11/10/2015 5:00:00 AM |
Metal braces were once the only option for correcting tooth alignment problems, but these days there are several alternatives that may be more convenient and less obtrusive. Some of these modern takes on orthodontics include clear braces, and the Invisalign system. At Love Family Dental, we offer Invisalign. If you're trying to choose between Invisalign and traditional braces, it's helpful to look at the advantages and disadvantages of each solution to decide which might be right for you.
Invisalign Pros and Cons
For a number of reasons, many people prefer Invisalign over traditional braces simply because Invisalign aligner trays are almost undetectable. Another big advantage is that aligner trays are removable and can be removed for eating. That means there's no problems with food getting caught in the trays, and no dietary restrictions to contend with.
However, those removable trays can actually be a disadvantage too. Because the trays can be removed at will, it's sometimes difficult to avoid the temptation to stop wearing them for brief periods, especially during the first few weeks of treatment. They do take some getting used to, and sometimes tooth movement can cause discomfort—so many patients are tempted to take them off to take a break. For optimal results, Invisalign aligners should be worn for 23 hours a day.
Traditional Braces Pros and Cons
Wearing metal braces means that some foods are off-limits; in particular, foods that are particularly sticky or hard. Additionally, some patients find that braces leave teeth stained and the wires and brackets can sometimes cause pain or mouth sores, which can be uncomfortable.
On the other hand, braces are definitely a more effective method of treatment for complicated orthodontic problems, and in some cases—particularly when back teeth need correcting—they're the only solution. Since braces can only be removed by your dentist, there's no problem with the temptation to take them off. And that also means there are no extra steps required for keeping them clean—regular brushing and flossing is all that's required.
Which is Right for You?
In a straight comparison between the two methods it's hard to pick a clear winner. Invisalign can be a more expensive option, but the treatment time is typically six to twelve months shorter than that of traditional braces. And while the Invisalign system is easier to wear, it's not a method that works for all kinds of tooth alignment problems.
For many people, it comes down to a question of the best option for their specific alignment issues, and what they want the procedure to achieve. Call Drs. Howard and Michael Love at Love Family Dental to schedule an Invisalign consultation.
11/3/2015 5:00:00 AM |
If you're missing one or more teeth, having those teeth restored in some way can make a huge difference in your day to day activities. The question is, with all of the current options, what kind of restorations are best? Many of our Love Family Dental patients find themselves choosing between traditional dentures and implant supported dentures. In order to help steer you in the best direction, let’s talk a little about each method of restoration.
How Dentures Work
Traditional dentures rest on top of your gums. They can be full dentures (when patients have no teeth on one or both of their arches) or partials (an oral prosthesis that replaces only a few teeth) Traditional dentures are typically held in place with denture adhesive. They can be easily removed at any time.
Implant-supported dentures are different. Although the denture is removable, it snaps securely into place on top of dental implants that are placed within the jawbone. Patients with implant supported dentures
typically have no natural teeth left on one or both arches. Only 4-6 implants are needed to secure an entire denture arch.
Advantages and Disadvantages
Because implant-supported dentures are anchored to dental implants, they have some advantages over traditional dentures. For example, they function more like natural teeth, can improve your ability to eat a varied diet, give patients back their palette (if currently being covered by a denture) and don't slip like traditional dentures sometimes do.
However, traditional dentures have some advantages too. They are generally more affordable than implant-supported dentures, and since they don't use implants, there's no surgery required. Getting traditional dentures is also a much quicker process than getting implant-supported dentures, as there's no requirement to wait for bone integration before fitting the prosthesis. For many people these are advantages that make traditional dentures the preferred choice, especially when only a few teeth are missing. However, some find implant supported dentures to be more cost effective as they rarely need to be adjusted or repaired. Traditional dentures often stretch and become ill fitted in time and need to be replaced.
Making Your Choice
Making the choice between different kinds of dentures can be tough. There are good reasons to choose either option. If you're wondering about which kind of denture might be best for you, give us a call
at Love Family Dental and together we will go over your different options.
10/27/2015 5:00:00 AM |
Fluoride is a mineral substance that occurs naturally in water and soil. Since the early twentieth century, fluoride has been added to community water supplies to help protect people's teeth from dental cavities.
How does Fluoride Work to Prevent Cavities?
Teeth consist of a matrix of minerals, and the minerals in healthy teeth are constantly being depleted and restored. Depletion is caused by oral bacteria that feed on carbohydrates and produce acids that break down tooth enamel. Enamel is constantly being restored as the teeth are exposed to saliva, which is rich in dissolved minerals.
Mineral depletion is minimized with a good diet and oral hygiene routine, and this helps to keep cavities at bay. However, the combined effects of a high-sugar diet and a poor oral hygiene routine promotes cavities, because the rate of mineral depletion becomes much faster. The result of this is cavity formation.
Fluoride protects against cavities because it helps promote mineral restoration, and also because the chemical properties of fluoride mean it can also make tooth enamel more resistant to acid.
Fluoride Dental Products
At Love Family Dental, we recommend that people with certain kinds of oral health problems take extra fluoride to help protect their teeth. People with gum disease, or who have a history of having frequent cavities, and people who have crowns, bridges, or braces, can fall into this category. As well as this, people who have conditions that cause them to produce less saliva may also benefit from fluoride supplementation, because saliva contains substances that help prevent cavities.
As well as being present in toothpaste and community water supplies, fluoride is added to certain kinds of oral health products, for people who need that extra protection.
· Fluoride gels, foams, and varnishes, which are applied to the teeth for several minutes and then rinsed off. These products contain much higher levels of fluoride than toothpastes and mouth washes, so they're only available in your dentist's office.
· High-strength mouth washes that contain more fluoride than over-the-counter mouth washes, can be prescribed by your dentist or doctor.
· Tablet or liquid fluoride supplements can be prescribed by your doctor or dentist.
Using Fluoride Products Safely
When used properly fluoride products are absolutely safe. However, concentrated fluoride products can have toxic effects when taken in very high doses, just as many health products are unsafe when they're overused. Because of this, parents should supervise young children when they brush their teeth, to make sure they're not eating the toothpaste. Products that contain fluoride should be stored out of reach of young hands, too.
In terms of fluoride in water, the level in the public drinking supply is so low that you'd need to consistently drink about ten liters of water a day to see any adverse effects.
To get a fluoride treatment in Astoria or to ask Drs. Howard and Michael Love about other ways to take care of your oral health, call Love Family Dental today
10/21/2015 6:00:00 AM |
Long-lasting and versatile, porcelain veneers are a highly popular cosmetic dental procedure, but they weren't always as widely available as they are now. When first invented, veneers were available only to elite movie stars—and in fact, they were invented to meet Hollywood's demand for picture-perfect smiles.
Veneers were invented in 1928 at the request of Hollywood makeup artists the Westmores, an influential and innovative family who worked with some of the movie industry's brightest stars, including Bette Davis, Vivienne Leigh, Rudolph Valentino, and Lauren Bacall.
The Westmore brothers were dissatisfied at the time with their limited range of options for altering the appearance of an actor's teeth. They wanted to be able to improve the way an actor's teeth looked for aesthetic purposes, and they also wanted more options in terms of innovating new shapes for special roles. A third reason for the request was related to the growing popularity of the “talkies”, thanks to 1927 film The Jazz Singer, the very first feature-length talking movie: the current options available to the Westmore brothers could modify the way the teeth looked, but impaired an actor's ability to speak clearly.
The brothers turned to Californian dentist Charles Pincus, who developed a device that was known first as the “false front” and later as “Hollywood facings”. Charles Pincus' original invention was a series of thin slices of porcelain, contoured and baked to provide stability. Unlike today's veneers, however, the false front was fitted temporarily for filming and personal appearances, and then removed, as the adhesives that were then available were not strong enough to allow permanent placement.
Modern-Day Porcelain Veneers
For several decades, veneers were available only to film and TV stars, and it wasn't until quite recently—in the 1970s and 1980s—that dental technology advanced to the point where porcelain veneers were inexpensive and practical enough for them to become a more mainstream cosmetic treatment.
Innovations such as stronger adhesives, and new methods of porcelain treatment, have created the veneers that we know today, which adhere strongly to teeth and can last for several decades with good care.
A Simple, Versatile Procedure
These days, veneers are a common cosmetic dental procedure we do at Love Family Dental. Present day veneers are so effective at improving the appearance of the teeth that they've come to be known as “instant orthodontics.” As well as improving teeth that are uneven in size or shape, veneers can cover up chipped cracked, and worn teeth, and correct the color of teeth that are resistant to whitening treatments.
And while that Hollywood-perfect smile was once only available to movie stars, now anyone can have a set of porcelain veneers, in just one or two dental visits. Call Drs. Howard and Michael Love
at our Astoria dental practice today to learn more about how veneers can give you a picture perfect, Hollywood smile.
10/8/2015 5:59:00 PM |
Dental implants are an innovative advancement in dentistry. Acting as a prosthetic root, an implant secures new teeth (crowns) in place, producing a natural looking and functional tooth.
Dental implant placement, however, requires specialized knowledge and training. Though many general dentists offer to place implants surgically, we feel that implant placement is more successful when conducted by a specially trained oral surgeon.
How do Implants Work?
The implant placement procedure, while relatively straight forward, requires tremendous expertise. Small titanium posts are surgically put into the jaw bone and serve as the tooth’s natural root. The surgical procedure itself takes very little time, depending primarily on the number of implants the patient is receiving.
Oral surgeons are uniquely skilled to not only place the implant, but they can also perform any required preparation needed to ensure a successful implant. For some patients, the preparation and placement can be conducted all in one appointment. For example, a tooth can be extracted and a dental implant can be placed in a single visit lasting about an hour and typically requires only local anesthesia. After a period of healing and bone integration which usually lasts about three months, patients visit their general dentist and the implants are fitted with a new crown.
Why Insist on a Dental Specialist?
Dental implants usually require multiple dental professionals including a Periodontist or an Oral Surgeon to surgically place the implant, a dental lab tech to create the restoration, and a general dentist to cap the implant with the implant restoration. Although many dentists are able to surgically place the dental implant, we refer to a specialist as they have an additional three years of specialized dental training beyond dental school and they usually have high performance technology that is not often found in a typical dental office. This technology often includes 3D CAD/CAM imaging and computerized surgical guides. At Love Family Dentistry, we believe that using an oral surgeon for implant placement delivers the most successful restorations and best patient experience.
Our preferred Oral Surgeons work closely with Drs. Michael and Howard Love
, ensuring patients receive lasting restorations and consistent care. Following the dental implant placement procedure and implant integration we focus on restoring the tooth with a crown or stabilized denture, and customizing the patient’s new functioning teeth to produce a beautiful, healthy and natural-looking smile. For more information about the dental implant process, contact Love Family Dentistry
today to schedule your consultation.
9/24/2015 4:54:00 PM |
The types of porcelain that dentists use for veneers and crowns are not all the same. In fact, there are a number of available types on the market, each with distinct differences in terms of strength and aesthetics. At Love Family Dentistry, we prefer to use E-Max porcelain for a variety of reasons.
In recent years, E-Max crowns have become incredibly popular because they combine a high level of durability with an impressive visual quality. The porcelain used in E-Max crowns has a natural look that blends well with other surrounding teeth to create an attractive smile.
The reason why E-Max crowns look so good is due in part to the subtle translucence of the porcelain which mimics the appearance of natural tooth material. The color can be adjusted match perfectly with the surrounding teeth in an individual patient’s mouth.
Why we choose E-max for our patients
Our Astoria practice is dedicated to providing lasting solutions that improve both the function and aesthetic appeal of our patients’ smiles. E-Max restorations look great, are long lasting, and the procedure is easy on our patients.
Since E-Max is less prone to chipping when compared to other types of porcelain, fewer patients visit our Astoria dental team for E-Max crown repairs than with alternative materials. In addition to its strength, we believe the ceramic is truly lifelike in appearance.
E-Max is made of high quality lithium desilicated glass ceramic, which is a revolutionary material that provides greater strength than other types of dental porcelain. The crown is crafted out of a single piece of material, and though it is incredibly tough, the end result looks surprisingly delicate. As no metal alloy base is required for an E-Max crown, patients do not have any gray around the gums, thereby creating a natural looking restoration.
E-Max crowns often require very little preparation to the natural tooth that is being crowned. This means very little drilling must be done to reshape the tooth so the E-Max crown can fit around it. We find patients appreciate the minimal invasiveness of the E-Max crown procedure.
Looking for a quality restoration? Choose E-Max
There are many different types of porcelains that are used to create dental restorations. As a patient, you are entitled to know what type your dentist plans on using to complete your smile. Finding a dental practice that uses quality materials often benefits patients in the long run. When considering the daily functions of your crown, skimping out on the best materials can mean additional replacement restorations down the road. When considering all aspects of your future crown, from durability and appearance to ease of use, E-Max porcelain crowns are a smart choice and our Astoria dental team
is proud to offer them.
7/2/2015 2:57:00 PM |
We're excited to announce the official launch of our Love Family Dental blog.
We'll be posting helpful dental tips, news from the dental industry, news from our practice, and more about the latest in dentistry.
We built our practice on the notion that we're there for our patients when they need us and we want our online presence to be a reflection of that principle. We hope this blog provides an extra level of service to our current and future patients.
If you would like to stay up to date on the latest from Love Family Dental, simply click the RSS “Subscribe to feed” link located on our website and subscribe. Our subscribers will be updated when we make a new blog post.
Here's to your best oral health ever!