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5 Things You Should Know About Dental Crowns

Dental crown

You Can’t Always Avoid Dental Work

Even if you go to the dentist regularly and take good care of your teeth, it can sometimes be necessary to get dental caps and crowns. Depending on what kind of dental work your dentist prescribes, you may need to get a crown. A crown is normally used to fix a damaged or missing tooth.

A Dental Crown Explained

* A dental crown is a cap for teeth that is essentially used to cover any damage that appear above or sometimes below the gum line. If you have damaged teeth and need to have a crown added, you can get dental crowns for your teeth to look their best.

* Once you get your dental crown, the teeth that the crown is covering no longer need to be pulled. It also means that surgery or any invasive procedure is no longer necessary. The crown will act as a protective cover for the tooth and will prevent any further damage from being caused to the tooth.

* If you get dental crowns, it will be a temporary option to begin with. Many initial crowns are meant to be temporary while the second application will need to be applied as a more permanent solution. The temporary is basically there to offer protection while the dental laboratory prepares the final and permanent crown. The final or permanent crown will match the other teeth of the patient and will have a perfect fit. It will be applied with dental cement or a strong adhesive to keep it in place.

What Dental Caps and Crowns Are Made of

* Dental caps and crowns can be made from many different materials. A ceramic dental crown is really quite common. Some crowns are also made of a gold alloy. In some instances, crowns can be made from a combination of ceramic and metal. A new material that is being used is known as Zirconia and is growing in popularity.

* Dental crowns can often be mistaken for fillings, but they are applied in very different ways. Filling is paced into the tooth white dental crown is placed over the tooth to allow full protective coverage.

More About Crowns

Tooth preparation for crowns may cause some discomfort, but for the most part, the process is relatively pain-free. Crowns will usually last for many years. Crowns cannot be whitened, so if they discolor, they’ll have to be replaced, but crowns can be made to match the teeth that you have to begin with. Crowns are a great way to get your smile looking great again.

5 Tips to Prepare for Your Cosmetic Dentistry Procedures

Cosmetic DentistryWe know that searching for cosmetic dentists in Houston returns a lot of results and it can be difficult to choose the right one. Ideally, every trip to the dentist would end with a happy customer and a word of appreciation to the dentist for doing such a professional job. While some of this is out of your hands, there are a few things you can do to prepare for cosmetic dentistry services and increase your chances of a successful session. Our cosmetic dentists at Bellaire Dental Group have prepared a few tips below that are easy for anyone to follow, but can have a big impact on your overall experience.

1. Get Before-and-After Photos

Asking for photos is perfectly normal, and it gives you some idea of how previous similar procedures went. Any professional cosmetic dentist in Houston is sure to have examples of his or her successes with various procedures.

2. Be Up-to-Date With Your Dentist

It’s important to go into a cosmetic procedure with everything more or less optimal to get the best results from your procedure. This means you should be in contact with your dentist beforehand and if necessary schedule a cleaning or an oral exam. Your dentist can ensure that your teeth are looking their best and more importantly that there is no additional functional work that your teeth need. The health and good condition of your mouth should come before any cosmetic procedure but if that isn’t reason enough, any problems with your teeth could also affect their appearance and change the outcome of the cosmetic dentistry services you want.

3. Request a Wax-Up

Although many people are unaware, you can request that your dentist make a wax mold to show you precisely how your teeth are going to look once the procedure is complete. Any qualified cosmetic dentist in Houston will be happy to prepare this mock-up for you. It is a functional item that your dentist will send away. Your dentist may charge you a lab fee for a mock up, however if you want to be able to see and approve the final result it may be well worth the fee. Technicians in a special lab will craft it, and you’ll be able to give final approval on it before the procedure starts. Take a good look at the wax-up and make sure you are fully satisfied before going ahead with anything.

4. Know Your Options

Commercials and other advertisements will bombard you with simple, easy cosmetic treatments for all of your smile woes. However, it’s best to consult with qualified professionals who will give you accurate information. Cosmetic dentists in Houston should provide each patient with sound advice and answer any questions before scheduling anything. Some of the most common procedures include braces, implants, veneers and relatively simple teeth whitening jobs. Some of these may be just what you’re looking for while others are unnecessary; consult with qualified experts to make sure.

5. Take Experience into Consideration

Take a bit of time to do some research into the qualifications of any dentist you’re considering and time spent “in the field”. Look at the reviews as well. This will ensure that you get someone who knows what they’re doing and will be able to mitigate any discomfort that may be a factor in the procedure. Cosmetic procedures require a steady hand and a technical experience. Make sure your dentist is one that will get it right the first time around.

These are some helpful techniques any reader can use to increase the likelihood of getting that perfect smile. By seeing what you’re getting beforehand, understanding all of your options and working with a great dentist, you won’t have to rely solely on the nebulous search results of cosmetic dentists in Houston to get the job done.

Dental Implants and Why You Might Need Them

dental implant

Signs You May Need Dental Implants

Dentures that incorporate dental implants are becoming increasingly popular over traditional dentures which can be embarrassing for some. Dental implants are a procedure in which a periodontist or oral surgeon places an artificial tooth surgically fused into the jawbone. This is an excellent option for long term tooth replacement. Prior to dental implants, your choices are either removable dentures or a fixed bridge. Fixed bridges use healthy teeth as anchors that can create problems down the road. Removable dentures can slip or fall out or make a clicking sound when you speak.

What Are The Advantages Of Dental Implants?

Dental implants are made of titanium metal that fuses directly to the jawbone. It acts as the root of the missing tooth. When restored, they look and feel like real teeth and preserve the integrity of your existing healthy teeth.

What Happens During The Dental Implant Process?

There are several things that will happen before and during the dental implant procedure. After your initial consultation, you will receive a dental exam that includes molds and x-rays of your mouth. Your oral surgeon or assistant will go over a treatment plan that will work best for you. They will go over the number of teeth that need to be replaced and inspect the condition of your jawbone. After the procedure, you will be taught how to care for your new dental implants. It mostly is no different than caring for regular teeth. You will need to brush and floss daily to help prevent plaque. Several surgical procedures will take place which can take nine months or more. Once you have healed, your surgeon will place an abutment followed by a crown or prosthesis. Dental implants will help you chew better and have a success rate of 95%.

5 Signs You May Need Dental Implants

1. If you have a missing tooth or teeth and difficulty chewing, you should look into dental implants.

2. Infected teeth generally need to be extracted. When an oral surgeon extracts the old tooth, a dental implant will take its place. You will not need to worry about maintaining special care for your implants. Regular brushing and flossing is sufficient.

3. Dental implants can prevent jaw bone loss. The titanium bonds to the bone tissue naturally enabling jawbone growth. This decreases the chance of bone deterioration over time.

4. Senior citizens who have lost their teeth, may suffer from having a sunken facial appearance. Dentures will not help support jawbone preservation like dental implants. As the jawbone deteriorates, a sunken facial appearance will result.

5. Dentures supported by dental implants stay and place and more comfortable to wear.

Understanding Gum Disease and How to Prevent It

Gum Disease and Prevention

What is Gum Disease

Gum Disease starts when bacteria causes inflammation of the gums, which is also known as gingivitis. With gingivitis, the gums become inflamed, red, and possibly bleed more easily. Gingivitis is just a mild form of a gum disease that can be treated with daily regular cleanings.

gum disease

Signs of Gum Disease

Signs that you may be the next victim of more serious form of gum disease (Periodontitis) include but are not limited to, swollen and tender gums, loose teeth, a consistency of bad breath, gums that bleed more easily, gums that move away from the tooth, teeth become overly sensitive to temperatures, there’s a change in the fit of partial dentures, visible pus starts surrounding the tooth and gums, or you start getting sharp pains when chewing your food.

Gum disease can sneak up on anyone at any time, so it’s very important you pay attention to the signs in your mouth. If something doesn’t look or feel right, then it’s always best to get it checked out immediately. Better safe than sorry!

Causes of Gum Disease

Some causes that are mostly found related to gum disease include plaque backing up on your teeth causing bacteria to grow. If the plaque is not removed within a timely manner it can turn hard and turn into calculus.

Scientists have conducted and researched more than enough studies from 1990 to 2006 to see if negative life events or psychological variables may have played a role to the increase of gum disease. After conducting, they found that 57% found a connection between stress, distress, depression, anxiety and loneliness to gums disease. Increased levels of a hormone produced during times of stress may contribute to lowering the body’s immunity, making it easier to attract gum disease.

Other variables that factor into the cause of gum disease is, smoking tobacco or chewing it, possibly having diabetes, some medications such as steroids or therapy drugs, crooked teeth, defective fillings, and pregnancy.

Gum Disease Treatment

To treat gum disease, you should seek professional help. Getting your teeth professionally cleaned by your dentist is the only way to remove built up of hardened plaque / calculus.

If the disease is more advanced than mild, root planning may have to be performed to treat the gum infection. When this occurs, the dentist will use an ultrasonic device to remove plaque and tartar from above and below the gum line.

Other treatments that may be used are laser treatments or surgery. It depends on how deep the periodontal pockets are that were formed.

How to Prevent Gum Disease

In order to hold off on gum disease for as long as possible, there are some steps you can take to make sure you have a beautiful white glistening smile. Proper brushing and flossing are the first steps. Big circular movements and make sure you’re brushing and flossing out those gums. Make sure you use an antibacterial toothpaste or mouth rinse to kill any bacteria that is left behind and lessen the amount of plaque. Removing plaque is the key to healthy gums and a great smile. Professional dental cleanings every 3 to 6 month are needed to remove any hard deposits.

Dentist in Houston

Gum disease treatment can be costly in terms of dental fees, your future dental health and time. Dr. Valter and the team at Bellaire Dental Group in Houston promote and maintain exceptional dental health for many patients and can ensure the same for you and your family. Their ultimate goal is to make sure every patient leaves the clinic with a smile. If you have any questions relating to dental care, give us a call!

5 Great Tips That Can Help Reduce Your Concerns for Dental Treatment

Dental Hygiene

Many people have a significant amount of anxiety surrounding their teeth. A common nightmare involves losing your teeth and one way to protect them is by having regular dental treatments at your local dentist. Many people put these dental treatments off due to anxiety, but dental care can provide many benefits and isn’t as scary as you might think, if you follow these pieces of advice.

It Is Better to Treat Dental Problems Early Than to Let Them Develop

Dental problems or pain are often a sign of a lingering problem. Much of dental care is preventative. There might be minor pain that is associated with filling a cavity, but if that cavity grows, your nerve will be exposed and you will experience unfathomable pain. Have your dental problems addressed early with regularly scheduled checkups and don’t delay the recommended treatment. It is always better to have your dental problems addressed early on.

Dental Pain Isn’t What it Once Was

Many people are hesitant to visit a dentist because they are afraid of dental pain. Dental pain isn’t what it once was and there are many different painkillers and treatments that significantly reduce your pain. The pain often comes from infections in your teeth due to delayed treatments. Even the dreaded root canal doesn’t have much pain once the nerve is severed in your tooth. Today, dental pain can be easily managed by several effective dental treatments.

Dental Technology Has Progressed to Handle Almost Any Dental Problem

You may think that your dental problems are beyond repair but there are many effective treatments for your dental problems that can be treated nowadays. Dental procedures are much more advanced than you may remember them to be and even serious dental problems are now treatable. If you have problems with your teeth from teeth that are curved or missing to discolored, chances are that a dentist can help to treat it.

Cosmetic Dentistry Can Greatly Improve Your Appearance

If you are worried about the color of your teeth than consider a cosmetic dentist. Cosmetic dentistry is often affordable, can help to improve your confidence and sense of self image, and help to spark your love life. There is no need to feel down about your teeth; a cosmetic dentist can help.

Use a Local Dentist

It is important for you to find nearby dentists in your neighborhood or by your job that you can trust. By selecting a nearby dentist you will be able to reduce the time for the visit, especially when you’re having a major dental service preformed on your teeth.

How Cosmetic Dentistry Can Revitalize Your Smile

If you’re looking for a way to revitalize your smile, contact a cosmetic dentist in Houston. They can show you how cosmetic dentistry can make your smile look great. Using clear braces, dental implants, porcelain veneers, teeth whitening and many other innovative techniques, Houston dentists can provide the cosmetic dentistry services you need to give you the bright, beautiful, attractive smile you always wanted. You no longer have to feel self-conscious about your dental issues. There are excellent Houston cosmetic dentists that can help.

Effective Affordable Treatment

Improving your smile is no longer prohibitively expensive. Advancements in cosmetic dentistry have now made fixing the dental problems more affordable. By visiting a cosmetic dentist in Houston, residents can gain access to many new effective, affordable treatments that can transform their smiles into a thing of beauty. Cosmetics dentistry is no longer just for movie stars and the very wealthy. There are now new, lower cost-effective techniques and technologies available that make it possible for almost anyone to be able to afford to improve their smile.

Restoring Teeth’s Natural Beauty

With one visit to a cosmetic dentist in Houston, residents can gain access to dental services that can restore their teeth’s natural beauty. These dentists can offer a wide array of comprehensive preventative and restorative treatments including dental veneers, bleaching treatments, dental implants, bonding, scaling, root planning as well as tray delivery systems. In some cases oral/maxillofacial surgery can be recommended to help patients attain optimal oral health and give them a more appealing smile.

Schedule A Consultation

Your smile can be your most memorable feature with the help of a Houston cosmetic dentist. They can identify and repair any problem you’re having with your teeth. You owe it to yourself to contact a Houston cosmetic dentist and schedule a dental consultation to find out what needs to be done to give you the smile of your dreams. They can offer a wide range of remedies to get rid of the gaps, chipped, broken, rotted, misaligned or other types of unsightly teeth and give you a fantastic smile.

But the first step is up to you. Contact a Houston, Texas cosmetic dentist today to begin the process. They will analyze your smile and create a plan to give you a great smile. Call now and let a cosmetic dentist begin revitalizing your smile.

What you need to know about Invisalign

Invisalign: Comfortable, Specialized Treatment

Dental Straightening & Alignment:

For decades, American youth have resorted to traditional metal or ceramic braces to adjust visible dental alignment issues. Historically, Orthodontics have successfully used braces to straighten and align teeth and to treat dental issues such as overbites, underbites, cross bites, malocclusions, crooked teeth, and other tooth and jaw conditions.

Braces vs. Invisalign:

invisalignWhile braces have, and continue to be a successful option for correcting issues of dental alignment, the wires, elastic, aesthetic impact, and overall discomfort associated with wearing braces have been a discouraging burden to many orthodontic patients.

A lighter, more comfortable, and invisible dental alignment solution, Invisalign is increasingly being adopted across the country as a more viable and attractive option. Although both braces and invisalign were created primarily to straighten teeth, braces are made up of metal brackets that are glued to the patient’s teeth and held together by arch wires and ligature elastic bands. These components work together to apply force and pressure to the teeth in order to gradually push the teeth into the desired position. While braces can come in less conspicuous tooth-colored ceramic, or even come in color, the primary elements of the structure remain the same.

Invisalign, on the other hand, is made entirely of clear, and comfortable, BPA-free plastic and is specifically designed to gently apply the right amount of pressure and force in target problem areas. The invisalign dental trays, tailored to meet the individual needs of each patient, are easy to remove and maintain, and are completely invisible. The clear plastic aligner trays are individually constructed by a specialist who utilizes, X-rays, pictures, and dental impressions to engineer the perfect tray for the patient’s needs. Over time, each invisaligner tray is replaced so as to continue making progress in the alignment process.

Why Invisalign Might Be Right For You:

Although traditional braces are typically worn for an average of 2 years, and are worn around the clock without the option of taking them off, the removable invisalign allows patients to take off the aligner trays while eating and maintaining dental hygiene. Moreover, Invisalign is typically used as a treatment for anywhere between 6-18 months, depending on the case. Completely invisible, removable, wire and bracket free, and causes little to no discomfort when eating, invisalign is the perfect solution for nearly every dental alignment need.

Finding the Right Specialist:

If you’re considering invisalign in Houston, TX, be sure to look for a qualified invisalign dentist in Houston. Feel free to check online or in your local directory for Houston’s invisalign dentists, especially trained professionals that can provide you with the safe and more comfortable treatment option that invisalign has to offer.

How to Choose the Best Floss for Your Teeth

Dental floss

Today, there are a variety of dental floss options available on the market. From having individual floss to a whole container, chances are you’ll be able to find the perfect type to carry around in your bag or pocket for whenever you need it. Even having floss that is mint-flavored can be handy for those times when you are unable to utilize mouthwash. If you are unsure of how to choose the best floss for your teeth, your dental professional will be able to point you to all of the best available options.

Just like all other products that people use daily, acquiring the perfect type of floss might not be an easy choice to make. Regardless of which flossing product you use, the most important thing to remember to do is to continue flossing.

The Best Floss for the Hard to Reach Plaque

There are four well-known flossing products that have shown great success for removing plaque. These are a shred-resistant type, an un-waxed, an electric flosser, and a woven floss. Out of these four, the electric flosser proved to remove the most plaque after a single use.

When compared to standard dental floss, the electric flosser has an equal capability to remove plaque. It is considered as a safe alternative to standard flossing. The benefits of an electric flosser are many, especially for older adults who could have difficulties with using floss. An electric flosser can also benefit many teens and young adults just because of the sheer fun they could have with their use. This can lay true for those who also use electric toothbrushes.

Dental Floss for different needs

Before choosing which floss would be the best, make sure that you take your entire family’s needs into consideration. This is because your family members may require different flossing products. At first, young children should start out using regular floss and then move up to an electric flosser. If having braces makes it difficult to floss then using spongy floss would be perfect for braces and other types of hardware. For tight spaces between teeth, your best bet will be to use a waxed floss that’ll easily slide between them.

Ensure The Product is ADA Approved

Having floss approved by the ADA is a sure sign that the product that you use is highly recommended. This is why companies know that having their product show the ADA’s seal is very important.

Final Thoughts

No matter which type of floss you use, the important part is to remember to floss every day and throughout the day. Make sure to always have some floss handy so when you’re finished eating lunch at work you won’t have to worry about having food particles stuck between your teeth while you smile.

Which Toothbrush Is More Effective? Manual or Electric?

toothbrushWhen purchasing a new tooth brush you may wonder what the actual difference is between an electric brush and a manual brush. Price point is the obvious difference but is one brush better than the other? The average manual toothbrush can start anywhere from $1 in price and run upwards to $8 dollars in cost. Electric toothbrushes typically start at around the $20 price point but customers should research their electric toothbrush prior to purchase. It is also recommended to ask your dentist if there is a specific electric toothbrush that they recommend.

Electric toothbrushes have been growing so much in popularity over recent years that the American Dental Association has issued many news releases regarding usage. The American Dental Association has stated that electric toothbrushes can be just as effective at plaque removal and regular manual ones if they are used properly. The same can be said about manual toothbrushes. Manual ones are easier to understand, you are taught certain hand motions and brushing patterns to reach all surface areas when brushing. Manual toothbrush use is also recommended to be accompanied with a timer. Making sure that you are spending a sufficient amount of time during brushing will help ensure that you are giving your teeth a thorough cleaning with your manual brush.

Electric toothbrushes can cost triple the cost of manual toothbrushes but there are many added benefits to utilizing electric toothbrushes. The average electric toothbrush can provide anywhere from six thousand to thirty thousand brush strokes per minutes. This cuts cleaning time in half. The downside is that bristles tend to wear out much quicker with electric tooth brushes. Why would anyone want to choose an electric brush over a manual brush? There are several reasons why electric brushes are used. People who experience restricted movement or arthritis may find it painful to use a manual toothbrush. Electric toothbrushes will do most of the cleaning on their own; the user will only need to change location of the spinning actions which will cause less stress on painful fingers, hands and joints. Children also benefit from the use of electric toothbrushes. Many pediatric dentists have noted that children enjoy the fun shapes and characters that are designed onto the brushes easy to grip handle. The brush doing the bulk of the cleaning helps young children maintain cleaner and healthier teeth. There is a drawback to small children using the electric toothbrush. Some small children admit that the vibrations can hurt their sensitive gums and teeth a bit and some children who are sound sensitive do not like the humming noise produced by these tooth brushes.

Whether you see a cosmetic dentist in Houston or seek other dental services Houston has to offer, most dentists will agree that either toothbrush is fine to use. The type of toothbrush a person uses is based on their own personal preferences and their physical abilities. The most important factor is to be using the toothpaste recommended and to be maintaining your checkups with your dentist. Routine checkups will help keep your teeth and gums in optimal health.

The Importance of Understanding Dental X-rays

dental x ray

Dental X-rays

Advancements in technology have integrated into the world of dentistry. Since X-rays are often used within the industry in the diagnosis of various dental issues this new technology has become critical. When your mouth is X-rayed your dentist sees a two dimensional image that defines the specifics of the area beneath your gums. In the past a dentist in Bellaire TX would have used a film X-ray. Technology has resulted in the creation of digital X-rays which are starting to phase out film. Digital X-rays are superior because they emit a lot less radiation, are more easily archived, and require less time.


Radiation is a factor in X-rays. Excess X-rays should be avoided to limit a patient’s exposure. The main reason your dentist is using digital X-rays is because they have reduced the level of radiation exposure by eighty percent. Every time you see your dentist your teeth are checked for the most common issues. This gives your dentist an excellent idea of the condition of your teeth and effectively limits the use of X-rays. The amount of radiation emitted by X-rays is considered to be on the low end. The average individual receives more radiation from being exposed to the rays of the sun in one day than from having dental X-rays taken. Despite this fact dentists ensure their patients are exposed to as little radiation as possible to ensure their health and safety.

The Different Types of X-rays

When your dentist takes X-rays from the inside of your mouth they are referred to as intraoral X-rays. X-rays taken from outside of your mouth are called extraoral X-rays. Intraoral X-rays are used so your dentist can see the development of your teeth, detect any problems with the roots, find any cavities, and make certain your teeth are correctly anchored to your jaw. This type of X-ray is focused on specific details in your mouth. An extraoral X-ray concerns both your upper and lower jaws and is not as detail oriented but helps to see any problems in the bone and structures of the jaws.

The Consequences of Refusing X-rays

Refusing to allow your dentist to take X-rays can have serious consequences. Without the assistance of X-rays your dentist is unable to see tooth decay located in between teeth or root problem. When these issues remain unresolved it can lead to very expensive dental procedures or the loss of teeth. X-rays give your dentist the ability to find these problems when they are still small, implement immediate action, and prevent the problem from worsening. Although your dentist can see most tartar and plaque, without X-rays, what is underneath your gums remains invisible. X-rays are safe and are the best way for your dentist to diagnose and treat any issues you may have. Refusing to have X-rays taken is not worth the risk it may present to your health.

Your Dentist

When you have any questions regarding X-rays or dental procedures your best course of action is to speak with your dentist. Once your questions have been answered it will enable you to relax. The unknown can be scary and your dentist will be happy to alleviate any concerns you may have.