Category Archives: Teeth Whitening

6 Remarkable Ways To Get A Smile Makeover

6 Remarkable Ways To Get A Smile MakeoverEver seen a hot model on the cover of a magazine? Of course you have. The seductive pose, the trendy outfit (or part of it) and often, a dazzling smile.

Have you stopped to think why that model, male or female, has beautiful white teeth?

Because it’s attractive and it sells.

Granted most of us will not be making the next cover of Glamor, but what if you’re single and looking for that special someone? Or if you’re hoping to ace that job interview? Or maybe, when you look in the mirror your smile doesn’t make you look as young as you feel?

Ladies and gentleman, the eyes may be the window to your soul but your smile holds the key.

A beautiful smile is by no means the only deciding factor, but it sure does make you–and your case–a whole lot more appealing. Study after study reports people with an attractive smile are perceived to be more friendly, intelligent and successful.

So how do you get there? These days, there are several options available, at all cost levels. Whether you’re a busy teacher, a high level executive or a parent who chauffeurs his kids to the orthodontist every month and forgets about himself, check these out:

1. Teeth Whitening

From over-the-counter whitening strips to home whitening kits to in-office treatments, teeth whitening has never been so accessible or affordable. With proper follow up (yes, you do have to do that) and use of a desensitizing toothpaste (like Sensodyne) for sensitivity, whitening is the simplest place to start. It may be the only boost you need for a brighter smile, fresher smile.

Add an electric toothbrush to your regimen for daily stain removal, and get double the benefit.

2. Cosmetic re-contouring

Minor chips at the edges of front teeth can leave your them looking ragged, and often they’re too small to place fillings. But some quick and snazzy smoothing can make them look better in just a few minutes. This also works in some cases where teeth are uneven in height and the discrepancy is minor. Ta-daah! Talk about a quick, easy and painless fix.

3. Clear aligners to straighten teeth

Had braces years ago but a few teeth have shifted slightly? Our clear aligner system can get your teeth back in line, usually in a few months without traditional braces.

4. Cosmetic fillings

The days of silver fillings are (mostly) behind us. That silver tooth will end up in the white range in most dental offices today. In my practice, rarely do I hear the words “I miss how dark my tooth use to look!”. Okay, never.

5. Porcelain Veneers

For resistant or internal dark stains that have nothing to do with drinking red wine (so drink away), or misaligned front teeth that would rather bypass braces, porcelain veneers are a great option. You can change the shape, size and color of your teeth and a couple of weeks later, end up with a brand new smile.

Caveat: you have to be a good candidate, or else these will not be successful long-term.

6. Cosmetic crowns (“caps”)

Despite my almost daily offer to add bling to teeth, I have yet to see any takers. I could easily add a diamond or a blinking LED light to that front tooth and virtually guarantee a one-0f-a-kind smile that stands out.

Surprisingly, my patients prefer beautiful, tooth colored crowns. And because they do, we have porcelain crowns to match and blend in with the rest of your pearlies.

As you can see, there are several ways to get a nicer, brighter smile without breaking your budget. While a full makeover is optimal for some, most times a few small or short term treatments can get you smiling bigger, brighter and look your best. Remarkable!

Want to know more about cosmetic procedures, or ready to start on your best smile?

Call or email us today!

(214) 522-3110                  www.raodentistry.com

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Cosmetic, Teeth Whitening

10 Easy, Cost-Effective Fixes For Common Dental Problems

Cost of dental treatment

Do you freak out when you hear the words your dental treatment will cost you…….. ?

Before you down an entire bottle of Tums, take a deep breath and read on.

If you want to keep the cost of dental treatment from out-growing your budget, there’s no better way to do it than prevention. Do your due diligence, and unpleasant surprises will stay few and far between.

Still, life–and teeth–have a way of putting a kink in your plans, so here are 10 easy and cost-effective tools and fixes for most common dental ailments:

1. Warm salt water rinses

Most gum irritations–be they red, sensitive or puffy–come to heel when subjected to a regimen of warm salt water rinses. The salt draws the irritant (or infection) to the surface, where the body eliminates it, and also helps neutralize the acidic environment that fosters bacteria.

Cost: < $1

2. Floss

If you haven’t discovered the power of floss, you’re missing out on one of THE most effective dental tools. It keeps teeth clean, lowers risk of cavities, prevents gum disease, and a bonus: helps prevent bad breath. Its slightly-less-powerful-but-still-effective brethren include tooth picks, proxa brushes, Sonic floss (if you like gadgets), etc.

Cost: ~$2

3. Tongue cleaner

Is it me or do you smell something? Ahem.

Get this handy gadget if you want to part ways with bad breath. This nifty tool will help get the funk off your tongue and make friends with fresh breath.

Cost:~$2

4. Sensitivity tooth paste

Teeth and gums throwing temperature tantrums? Mild-but-constant sensitivity to cold foods and drinks can be soothed into submission with a desensitizing tooth paste in just a few days.

Cost: ~$2-$5 

5. Dental/orthodontic wax

Whether you’re in braces or have a chipped tooth and can’t get to the dentist right away, dental/orthodontic wax is easily gettable from any drugstore, preventing excessive gum irritation and keeping you comfortable.

Cost: ~$4

6. Orabase

Pizza burn? Hot coffee burn? Orabase is a handy topical numbing agent that can soothe minor burns in your mouth and get those gums and tissues to start healing.

Cost: ~$6

7. High flouride tooth paste

Darn those cavities! While there’s no substitute for good oral care at home and regular maintenance at your dentist’s, you can still aim a good power punch at cavities-to-be by using a prescription strength high flouride tooth paste. This is especially useful if you’re prone to getting cavities, but would rather not.

Cost: ~$15-$25 per tube

8. Electric toothbrush

Now, this one doesn’t qualify as “low-cost”….or does it?? Let’s see.

It cleans your mouth better, lowers risk of gum disease, helps prevent gums from receeding, picks up some of the slack if you don’t floss daily, and removes daily stains more effectively and thus keeps teeth fresher and brighter.

So yes, it’s a small chunk of change up front but saves you a ton of $$ over the long haul.

Cost: $100-175 (for a GOOD one)

9. Night guard

Bring out the cavalry, I’m getting on my soap box. Teeth grinding/clenching can chip, grind or break your teeth, cause jaw soreness or pain, and wear out your existing crowns and fillings faster. A night guard is a great non-invasive (i.e. no drill) solution. One guard, less dental work. Plus, many dental insurances cover it.

Cost: ~$300-$600

10. Regular dental check ups

Yes, this IS an easy and cost-effective fix. It costs less to keep up with check ups and annual x-rays to catch cavities when they’re small rather than waiting till they turn into toothaches, root canals and crowns… or worse, losing your teeth.

On the flip side, some NOT so effective fixes: aspirin (for pain), paint on whiteners, overuse of baking soda, whitening mouthwashes, antibiotics (which are often temporary fixes because they treat symptoms, not the problem).

Cost: a lot less than if you didn’t

Don’t want to pay high dental bills? Then form good habits, be consistent, get basic tools, and get regular dental check ups (i.e. good maintenance)…and your stay in the dentist’s chair will be short and sweet.

Need more? Or just need to get started? Call us, email us, or Facebook us:

(214) 522-3110   www.raodentistry.com    Facebook: Rao Dentistry

Image: Meawpong3405

2 Comments

Filed under Dental, Health, Teeth Whitening, Wellness

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

3 Comments

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

7 Tips for the Best Teeth Whitening Experience, Ever

You want a smile that dazzles.

That entices.

A smile that gleams, that lights up your face and the room.

And you can get it.

Teeth whitening may be the only thing standing between you and that bright, white smile you desire. Luckily, there are plenty of options available today.

Your first stop may be partaking the offerings of the drug store i.e. whitening strips. If that gets you results, great. Mission accomplished.

If that doesn’t quite do the trick, head over to your dentist’s office for the next level of whitening pizazz.

From your dentist, the take-home kit is (in my opinion) THE way to go. It includes trays made to fit your teeth that you keep for good, and enough whitening gel to get started plus a few touch ups. For the money, it’s the best bang for your whitening buck.

This option is truly individual, and can be used as much or as little as needed to get the result to you want.

Once you get home and get into DIY mode, however, following through the process can be confusing.

So, to avoid getting a bald spot from scratching your head (pass the Rogaine), here are some tips to help make it a comfortable, convenient and easy experience:

1. The best time to whiten your teeth . . .

. . . is right after you get your teeth cleaned professionally (cuz your 15 seconds at home isn’t “professional”). It’s not critical, but this is when your teeth are their squeakiest clean, with all external stains scrubbed off.

2. The all-important PREP

Before you start whitening, start brushing your teeth with a desensitizing toothpaste like Sensodyne or Crest Sensitivity. This prepares your teeth for whitening and keeps sensitivity ‘zings’ to a minimum. Continue using it during and a few days after you’re done.

3. Follow the instructions

Your dentist will go over some do’s and don’ts regarding how long to wear your trays and for how many days. Different brands means times can vary. This is simple, but easy to forget.

4. Less vs. more

Many people make the mistake of using too much gel in their trays. Result: waste of gel and more sensitivity. Only use a pea-size amount, primarily for your front 8 teeth (top and bottom). Most people don’t show any more when they smile (unless you’re Julia Roberts), so whitening your molars waaay back there is unnecessary.

5. Keep ’em clean

Remember to keep up with flossing, and preferably brush with an electric toothbrush, which minimizes surface stains. And don’t forget to brush the inside of your trays to keep them clean. If they get gunky, they’ll smell funky. Eww.

6. Keep ’em cool

When not in use, put the gel and trays together in a plastic baggy in the fridge. This helps prolongs the shelf life of the gel, and keeping everything together prevents them from getting misplaced (yes, that happens more than you might think).

7. Don’t fall for the hype

No matter how easy the TV commercials make it look, whitening is not a one time deal. Maintenance, i.e., “touch ups” are needed periodically to keep your pearly whites gleaming. Over time food and drink can dull your teeth, so stay on a regular schedule (once a month or few months, depending on how white you want your teeth). It’s like working out-you have to keep doing it to get the results you want.

These simple yet often overlooked details can make a big difference, making a messy and cumbersome process into one that’s easy and comfortable enough to repeat as and when needed.

As far as I can see, a whiter smile is the easiest way to add some bling to yourself. What’re you waiting for?

Questions? Comments? Or are you ready to start? Call or email us at:

(214) 522-3110             www.raodentistry.com

4 Comments

Filed under Smile, Teeth Whitening

Are Veneer Or We Far? Your Porcelain Guide Is Here

99 porcelain veneers on the wall, 99 porcelain veneeeers……

take one down and pass it around, 98 porcelain veneers on the wall!

Yikes! This song makes no sense whatsoever. You can’t put porcelain veneers on a wall.

They go on your TEETH.

And for a lot of people, veneers have given them the smile they’ve always wanted.  

Luckily, no human has ever been discovered with 99 teeth, so the good news is that they’re quite achievable. In fact, they can be a reality.

Your reality.

If mother nature did not bless you with naturally straight, even, white teeth (the nerve!), what is a guy or gal to do in the 21st century? If a prettier smile is what your heart desires, well, modern cosmetic dentistry can offer you some options.

Might you be a candidate for braces or Invisalign? It may take some time but getting your teeth all lined up may do the trick. Perhaps add a dash of whitening to glam them up.

Not enough? Well, next step up might be some tooth colored fillings or minor re-shaping that you’d be amazed could make a major difference.

If you need to make some bold changes, however, it would be advisable to have a sit-down chat with your dentist about veneers.

But what are veneers, aka “laminates”?

Veneers, my friends, are thin shells of porcelain (or sometimes tooth-colored filling material, called “resin veneers”) that are placed on your front teeth to improve their appearance.

If you have healthy but misaligned, severely discolored, chipped or uneven teeth, veneers could be a GREAT choice.

Typically, a minimal amount of enamel is removed from the front of your teeth, and 2 to 3 weeks later, veneers are bonded to your teeth. They can be made to match any tooth shade, and once placed; voila! Straight, even, white teeth are yours.

Porcelain veneers can last anywhere from 5-10 years, sometimes longer, and are much less invasive than crowns. They look very natural, and your smile becomes a thing of beauty once again.

Before you decide on an option, a pro/con discussion is always advisable.

If your teeth have decay, you have gum disease, you clench or grind your teeth, you chew ice, or your bite is off kilter, you may need to drop veneers off your list.

Smile transformations are possible; miracles, perhaps not. Be sure not to force it, or else you’ll find yourself in the land of lamination damnation. *Shudder.

Costs vary, and most insurances don’t cover them. And no, you can’t skimp on brushing and flossing. If they chip or break, repairs are rarely possible, so you may need to wear a night guard to protect them.

Be honest, and realistic, with yourself and your dentist so you both pick what’s best for you.

But be careful; if you make the RIGHT choice, you may end up with a smile better than you’ve ever imagined, and won’t be able to help yourself giving it away, perhaps 99 times a day.

If you have questions, we have answers! Feel free to ask in the comments, or visit our website, or give us a call. See, lots of options!

www.raodentistry.com     (214) 522-3110

3 Comments

Filed under Cosmetic, Teeth Whitening

7 Pearls Of Transcen’dental’ Wisdom

1. The fastest way to brighten your day: SMILE. 

2. Beauty without health is like a song without a melody.

3. The Floss Police does not exist (but do it anyways).

4. Everything you do to take care of your body, matters. Even the little things.

5. You can speak “smile” in any language.

6. Conquering your fear: priceless.

7. No smile is too white for that delectable glass of red or a lovely cup of coffee 🙂

Do you have more pearls to add to this list? Tell us in the comments below!

(214) 522-3110     www.raodentistry.com

8 Comments

Filed under Cosmetic, Smile, Teeth Whitening, Wellness

5 Years, And Counting-Let’s Celebrate!

As June 1, 2011 rolls around,

I will be celebrating my 5th anniversary at my practice. To mark this occasion, I thought of having a HUGE celebration, with invites to all my patients and their families, live music, balloons, and even a champagne toast.

Then I remembered that I’m a dentist, and no one would want to come.

Sob. Sniffle. Whimper.

Just kidding.

This may not mean much if you joined our ‘family’ recently, but for all you old timers, you’ve been around long enough to see me take the practice over from Dr Myers/Dr Knight.

For the record, I appreciate y’all not kicking me out just yet like you did the other guys. Personally, I think it’s because I’m better looking, and since no one has contradicted that, I’m going to go with it.

The older I get, it seems the days turn into weeks and weeks into years a little faster. I blame mostly my children for that.

But I did want to take a moment and reflect on these past few years that have been so very significant to me.

There have been ups and downs for sure,

and lots of lessons learned. Taking care of patients, leading a team and managing a business have kept my plate kinda full. The biggest challenge, really, has been building an all star team, and working together as parts of a whole. It took me a while, but I know you’ll concur that my ladies are PRETTY awesome people and GREAT at what they do. I wouldn’t get very far without them walking beside me.

And I cannot even begin

to express my gratitude to all you wonderful people who I’ve gotten to know past teeth and gums. I still remember all the baby presents I received when I was pregnant, boxes of cookies and cupcakes for making that great smile a reality, or the numerous (hand written!) thank you notes for seeing folks on an emergency basis. I’m impressed daily how so many of you ask about my children even though you see me only twice a year. The baby pictures. The Christmas cards. The list is long.

The icing on the cake? The hugs I get after someone has turned a corner-when they no longer fear coming to the dentist, no matter what happened in their past.

What I do is hardly popular or glamorous, but when I have such amazing people who make me feel needed, five years is just a start.

Here’s to many, many more.

Thank you.

Ritu Rao

PS: As a special thank you for this milestone, we are offering our Take Home Whitening system for $50 (regular price $351) till June 15th! So call us at (214) 522-3110 and reserve your appointment to take advantage of this great offer!

www.raodentistry.com

Leave a comment

Filed under Experience, Teeth Whitening