Posts for: March, 2017
The best way to prevent dental visit anxiety in your children is start those visits around their first birthday, and continue with them through childhood. Age One visits are the best way to ensure they're comfortable with the dentist now and that they'll continue the habit into adulthood.
But in spite of your best efforts and those of your dental provider, there's no guarantee your child won't experience dental visit anxiety at some point. If that happens, we recommend conscious sedation.
Conscious sedation is the use of certain medications to help a patient relax. It's not the same as anesthesia, which eliminates pain by numbing tissues (local anesthesia) or inducing unconsciousness (general anesthesia). During conscious sedation a patient remains awake or at the most in a dream-like state, can still respond to touch or verbal commands, and although monitored doesn't require assistance in heart or lung function.
We can induce this relaxed state in a number of ways: orally, with medication given by mouth a short time before the visit; intravenously, the medication delivered through a drip directly into the bloodstream; or by inhalation, usually nitrous oxide gas mixed with oxygen and delivered by mask.
Oral sedation is the most common. On the day of the procedure, we'll give your child one or more sedative drugs, usually in syrup form. For best results we advise they eat a low-fat dinner the night before and not eat or drink any food or liquid afterward. We typically use Midazolam and Hydroxyzine, both of which are proven safe and fast acting.
During the procedure, we'll also assign a team member to monitor their vital signs while they're under the influence of the drugs. We may also employ special positioning or immobilization equipment to keep movement to a minimum.
After the procedure, we'll continue to monitor vitals until they return to pre-sedation levels. The child should remain home the rest of the day to rest and return to school the next day.
Conscious sedation is regulated by states: providers must be trained and licensed to administer sedation drugs with continuing education requirements. Even so, the use of sedation for children is becoming more widespread and helps to safely ensure they're getting the dental care they need.
If you would like more information on comfortable dentistry for children, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Sedation Dentistry for Kids.”
Whether you wish to subtly change your smile to correct its small imperfections or you are looking for a complete smile makeover, dental veneers can help you take the bull by the horns and get the smile you have always wanted. Veneers’ versatile nature can provide exactly the results you dream of in just a few dental appointments. Learn more about dental veneers with your dentists at Hillside Dentistry in Torrance, CA.
How can dental veneers help my smile?
Thanks to their design, dental veneers can change the shape, height, width and color of your teeth. A single veneer can cover imperfections on one tooth or your dentist can use a veneer on every visible tooth to completely overhaul your smile. Veneers’ porcelain materials greatly resemble natural teeth and blend in with your smile to provide the most natural look possible. Dentists use veneers in many situations, including to repair:
- cracked teeth
- chipped teeth
- discolored or yellowed teeth
- uneven teeth
- small gaps
- small overlaps
Are dental veneers permanent?
Veneers are a permanent porcelain dental restoration and made to last upwards of 20 years before requiring replacement. Since veneers require preparation of the tooth, the procedure is considered irreversible. The preparation stage of veneers involves removing a thin layer of enamel from the surface of the tooth to help the veneer bond to the tooth and to make room for its width.
Dental Veneers in Torrance, CA
Your veneers will look and function like natural teeth. Also similar to natural teeth, your veneers will require a strong at-home dental care routine to help them remain strong, healthy and clean and lengthen their lifetime. Luckily, caring for your veneers is as easy as caring for your natural teeth. Dentists recommend brushing twice a day using a soft brush. Use a back-and-forth motion to brush the front and back of each tooth. Additionally, floss at least once daily between each tooth, remembering to include the back of your last molar. Coupled with regular bi-annual dental examinations and cleanings, your at-home oral care routine will keep your natural teeth and veneers healthy for many years to come.
For more information on dental veneers, please contact Hillside Dentistry in Torrance, CA. Call (310) 530-4300 to schedule your appointment with your cosmetic dentist today!
As a member of the best-selling pop group Spice Girls, Mel C (AKA Sporty Spice) enjoyed her share of musical superstardom. At the band’s peak in the Nineties, the young singer’s signature look featured baggy sweatpants, an assortment of tattoos, a nose stud and a gold-capped incisor, front and center in her mouth. Today, Melanie Chisholm is still singing — but now she’s a mom, an amateur triathlete… and that gold tooth is just a memory. Not only that, her smile looks more evenly spaced and whiter than it did when she was referred to as the “tomboy” of the group.
What happened? In our view, it all boils down to changing tastes — plus a little bit of help from dental professionals. As the “wannabe” singer proves, there’s no single standard when it comes to making your teeth look their best. Your own look is unique to you — and your smile can reflect that individuality.
For example, crowns (caps) are substantial coverings that may be placed on teeth when they are being restored. They are available in three types: gold, all-porcelain, or porcelain-fused-to-metal. The latter two are tooth-colored, while the gold is — well, shiny like gold bling. Which one is right for you? In many cases, it’s your choice.
Likewise, dental veneers — wafer-thin shells that can correct cosmetic issues by covering the surface of your teeth — can be made in a variety of shades. Their hues may range from natural ivory to Hollywood white, and everything in between. What’s the best color for you? Only you can say.
Some people opt for a “smile makeover” that uses small irregularities in the spacing and color of teeth to create a more “natural” look. Other folks want a perfectly even, brilliant white smile that dazzles the eye. Still others are looking to match or restore the smile they once had — perhaps even re-creating a signature gap between the teeth. As long as there are no other dental issues involved, the choice is yours.
So if you’re unhappy with your smile — or if you feel it doesn’t reflect the person you “wannabe” — why not talk to us about a smile makeover? Just call our office to schedule a consultation. You can learn more about this topic in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Beautiful Smiles by Design” and “The Impact of a Smile Makeover.”