Category Archives: Smile

Getting Back to Gratitude

gratitude list for thanksgivingThursday is Thanksgiving….a day to devote to family, football, enough food to give our stretchy pants a real challenge….including lots and lots of pie.

And, of course, gratitude.

Most of us probably don’t take as much time as we should to reflect on everything we are grateful for. If you have, you’ll perhaps agree that it can be uplifting and humbling at the same time. And long, if we’re honest.

Since much of what we do around here has to do with taking care of oral health, I thought it would be a good place to highlight for the upcoming holidays, even though we need it all year round.

Here is a partial list of gratitude, for mouth, teeth and everything in and around, that lets us:

Eat

food to grow and nourish

Smile

be friendly or show respect

Drink

be it water or wine

Kiss

show love love love

Breathe

to live and to meditate

Bite

teeth to eat food

Taste

the “sense” to enjoy

Laugh

humor, happiness and joy

Speak

to communicate, connect and of course, say thanks

And speaking of, I am supremely grateful for the wonderful ladies I work with, and the wonderful patients we get to serve.

How about you? I want to know what you’re grateful for! No matter how (if) you celebrate Thanksgiving, it feels great to take a minute and reflect on what’s made your life better this year. Let me know in a comment below.

(214) 522-3110                www.raodentistry.com

Image: verybestbaking

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Filed under Experience, Health, Smile, Wellness

Dental Care For Athletes

dental care for athletes

Do you secretly dream of being the next super-athlete, say like Tiger Woods, Serena Williams or Lance Armstrong (minus the doping and the drama)?

Whether you’re on the road to glory, or an everyday athlete starring in your own life story, you’ll need:

Commitment. Dedication. Hard work.

and…….

your TEETH.

Yup. No matter the sport, your teeth are going in with you. To stay in the game, you’ll need to stay in tip-top shape, and  your teeth need to be an asset, not a liability.

Here are a few points to keep in mind:

1. Wear your protective gear

Helmets, padding and mouth guards….are not athletic couture, but meant to keep you safe, and last more than just one game. This goes for all contact sports, but if you’re a heavy duty gym buff (like a weight lifter), a mouth guard is for you too.

Skip it and you risk your teeth getting bruised, battered or knocked out.

2. Eating more sugar? Floss it out

Energy bars, gels and chews….all that sugar may give your body that extra oomph when pushing your limits, but be sure to come home to your toothbrush and floss later that day, or else contend with an increased risk of cavities down the road.

3. Sports drinks….are they in you?

If you’re guzzling sports drinks to fuel your endurance….neither the acidic pH nor the high content of sugar are doing your enamel any favors, making it easy for bacteria to march forth and do damage.

Be sure to:

  •  moderate your intake–by choosing water outside of your activities, and
  •  fuel your prevention–by using higher fluoride in your daily oral care.

Pump up your daily oral care routine by asking your dentist for a prescription strength flouride toothpaste or gel, or use over-the-counter mouth rinses like ACT for extra protection from enamel erosion, tooth sensitivity and possible decay.

And, of course, keep up with your check ups with your dentist so you can maintain good oral health and stay ahead of any issues. Score!

Time out? Cut off? Delay of game?

Not you.

By building these simple–but effective–habits into your oral care, the last thing you’ll worry about during game time is your teeth….well, until you flash your big smile for the front pages 😉

Want to score big on your oral health? Call or email us:

(214) 522-3110                www.raodentistry.com

Image source: Sura Nualpradid

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Filed under Prevention, Smile, Wellness

The Key Element Of Irresistable Personal Style

Think of all the things you do to look and feel good: woman applying lip gloss

You exercise to stay in shape

You eat well to stay healthy

Get your hair done, and use make up to turn it up a notch

The right clothes that flatter your shape (Hel-lo)

You style it up with the right scarf, spiffy tie or that haute handbag

Don’t forget the shoes! (I LOVE shoes ;))

But what about your smile?

You know it’s part of your look right? The one you use to show confidence, greet a friend, show respect. You pull it out when you’re happy, but stop using…..a split second before you burst into laughter.

The one you wouldn’t be complete without.

Honey, you can be the whole package, the cat’s meeeeowwww, the apple of someone’s eye

But when you smile….

You are your best YOU.

This Smile-O-Gram was brought to you by: www.raodentistry.com         (214) 522-3110

We remind you to smile for better health and happiness. If your smile needs to get back on your list, call or email us for an appointment today.

Image source: Stuart Miles

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Is It Possible To Like Going To The Dentist…Finally?

Clock saying 'time for change'It’s no breaking news that the idea of going to the dentist is an unpleasant event.

While few are comfortable enough to think nothing of it, most people associate a dental visit with emotions ranging from utter dread to mild anxiety, even at the thought of something as routine as a teeth cleaning.

Such emotions often stem from unpleasant experiences in the past, “horror” stories from others and let’s face it–the thought of something sharp or a loud drill in your mouth doesn’t paint the most appealing picture.

Of course I’m biased (occupational hazard), but after years of encountering such emotions, I’ve learned that changing minds and perceptions–to some degree, at least–is entirely possible, yes, even about the dentist.

Changing Your Mindset

Don’t you do it already? If you’ve ever quit smoking, tackled your taxes yourself or even started a new exercise routine, you’ve changed a habit, which essentially starts with changing your mindset.

How?

By ignoring past setbacks, expecting success, and taking the first step. Then the next, and then another.

What keeps you going is the focus on the end result, the “prize” of being smoke-free, signing off your tax forms and looking better in the mirror. And yes, even getting that sparkling, healthy smile.

Liking The Dentist

While the common perception of dentistry is not flattering, many dentists who don’t fit that mold at all.

For example, in our practice, where we have systems set up to make patients feel comfortable, where we listen to what patients are saying, and focus on comfort in spite of the anxiety we know to expect, it’s not uncommon (for us) to change the old perception.

So what exactly is our m.o.? To invite the kind of folks who

  • want and value great dental care,
  • get that we love to make each person feel special AND comfortable
  •  like to have fun doing it.

Each person on our team knows and believes in that. We have technology and tools, but all that stuff has one goal–to help you make your dental home with us for life.

Our hope is that you will perceive us the way we want: We want to make you feel good about dental care, and change a few minds along the way for those who don’t.

Are you ready…finally!….to like going to the dentist? Then call or email us for an appointment:

(214) 522-3110             www.raodentistry.com

Photo credit: Salvatore Vuono

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Filed under Dental, Experience, Health, Smile, Smoking, Wellness

A Ridiculously Simple Way To Improve Your Smile

Do you feel that, as an adult, you’ve missed the boat on straight teeth?boat on the beach

Maybe you never had braces growing up.

Or you did, but never wore retainers (oops!) and things have shifted since.

What if having straight teeth didn’t matter then, but it matters to you…now?

The simple answer that your teeth may be looking for is Clear Braces.

Clear Braces are the modern adult’s straight teeth solution.

They are:

  • esthetic
  • convenient
  • removable
  • effective

As an adult, you get to decide what your perfect smile is. If you’ve discussed porcelain veneers and cosmetic bonding with your dentist, and decided those are not the way to straight teeth for you, orthodontics may be the option ‘X’ that marks the spot.

Being clear on what you want

If you know your goal–and you very well should–is to dot every “i” and cross every “t”, perhaps traditional braces are the way to go, because they offer more control and can do more.

Heck, if your bite is off kilter, using clear braces to correct it is like using a tugboat to pull a tanker. Getting a proper diagnosis and deciding which one you’re a better candidate for is KEY.

When the solution is clear

Now, if want to improve what you’ve got, to correct a relapse from previously having braces, especially if your front teeth look like drunken sailors trying to prop each other up……well, clear braces may be the perfect solution to get them looking like the guards at Buckingham Palace instead.

The popular brand making airwaves is Invisalign. While it’s a great system (and we have it available), we work with one called Red, White and Blue. Same principles, similar method, half the cost, great results.

If you think your ship has sailed on straight teeth and a confident smile, you may want to do a double take. There’s another one in the harbor, clearly waiting just for you.

Did I get you hooked? Call or email us and we’ll get you straightened up in no time (well, almost):

(214) 522-3110                            www.raodentistry.com

Photo credit: chokphoto

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7 Ways To Whiten Your Teeth, Without Professional Help

DIY Whiten TeethYour precious teeth. You know they’ve got the right to be as white as they can.

You’ve looked and looked in the mirror…..then looked some more, willing them to be their whitest.

But, to no avail.

Actually, the answer may be a lot easier than you’d expect.

There are two paths to a whiter, brighter smile

  • slow, steady, continuous–things you can do to improve your smile
  • faster, as-needed (or wanted)–whitening products and whitening options dental professionals can provide.

Your results will be better and last longer if you do both.

Here are the “slow and steady”, but very effective, ways:

1. Use an electric toothbrush

A good quality electric toothbrush will not only clean your teeth and gums more effectively, it will also remove stain better than a manual toothbrush (unless you’ve got sonic hands), especially when combined with a whitening toothpaste.

2. Floss

There just doesn’t seem to be getting away from this one, is there?

If keeping plaque and gum-disease away are not enough motivation, think of it this way: with last night’s dinner still stuck between your teeth, how are your toothpaste and toothbrush bristles going to remove stain?

3. Modify soda and other dark liquid consumption

Dark liquids may excite your taste buds, but in terms of stain (and many, to your general health)–they’re doing you no favors. One solution is to use a straw to drink them, which reduces exposure to stain.

Of course, it’s not exactly a classy way to enjoy a glass of red wine (the waiter at Chez Paree might frown), so try a different solution–sip some water right after, and be sure to brush as soon as possible.

It also helps to drink your sodas and ice teas in a few minutes rather than sipping on them for hours.

4. Curb/quit smoking

If vanity can ever be the final straw, let it be for white teeth. Smoking will take your teeth nowhere but the dark side. Cut back on (or cut out) smoking and the stain will go with it. Pipe stains can be especially tenacious.

5. Eat raw fruits and vegetables

The most delicious tip of the bunch. Crunchy foods like raw apples and celery, and fruits like strawberries have natural stain-removal properties. If you eat these foods anyway, give yourself bonus points!

6. Keep up with your dental visits

Those dental tools may not be much to look at but boy, in the right hands–like your dentist’s or dental hygienist’s–not only do they provide better oral health but get to nooks and crannies you can’t.

Stay on schedule with your teeth cleaning and check up appointments and they’ll get your pearlies spruced up before stain gets out of hand.

7. Start early

Don’t shoot the messenger, but……age definitely contributes to staining of teeth. With the exception of internal stain due to antibiotics or other developmental reasons, external stain is a factor of our oral care and diet, and gets more stubborn over time.

Start good habits (as listed above) early, and maintain them, and you’ll reap the fruits of your labor for years to come.

Ready for a brighter smile? Then get started on these tips today. Combine them with professional whitening, and you’ve not only got a winning combination, but a winning smile too 🙂

Call us: (214) 522-3110         Visit us: www.raodentistry.com

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Filed under Cosmetic, Oral Health, Smile, Smoking, Teeth Whitening

How To Floss With Braces, The Right Way

The metal. The wires. The bands.

No, it’s not a rock party. I’m talking about full-on metal braces, the gear you sport on the way to…

a fabulous smile.

You know, the one that boosts your confidence, makes your pictures come alive, and lets the whole wide world know that you have straight teeth.

Alas. Beauty comes at a price.

And part of that price is the work it takes to get there.

With all that hardware, keeping your teeth and gums healthy can seem like a daunting task.

If you’re a parent, you know all this already.

You also know that the last thing you want is gum disease or a mouthful of cavities after a couple of years in braces, because the teeth and gums weren’t given the TLC they needed.

But getting your child to take an active interest in his or her oral care while in braces….well, let’s just say it’s nice to get some help.

Here is a handy video (courtesy Bracesquestions.com) via YouTube that, in 3 minutes, shows how to floss the right way when you have a mouthful of braces:

Have questions? Ask us in the comments. We’ll get them answered, or tap on our friendly neighborhood orthodontist’s shoulder to help out 😉

(214) 522-3110        www.raodentistry.com

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Filed under Children's dentistry, Oral Health, Smile