Posts for: September, 2019
The 2019 Grammy Awards was a star-studded night packed with memorable performances. One standout came from the young Canadian singer Shawn Mendes, who sang a powerful duet of his hit song "In My Blood" with pop diva Miley Cyrus. But that duo's stellar smiles weren't always quite as camera-ready as they looked that night.
"I had braces for four and a half years," Mendes told an interviewer not long ago. "There's lots and lots and lots of photo evidence, I'm sure you can pull up a few." (In fact, finding one is as easy as searching "Sean Mendes braces.")
Wearing braces puts Mendes in good company: It's estimated that over 4 million people in the U.S. alone wear braces in a typical year—and about a quarter of them are adults! (And by the way: When she was a teenager, Miley Cyrus had braces, too!)
Today, there are a number of alternatives to traditional metal braces, such as tooth-colored braces, clear plastic aligners, and invisible lingual braces (the kind Cyrus wore). However, regular metal braces remain the most common choice for orthodontic treatment. They are often the most economical option, and can be used to treat a wide variety of bite problems (which dentists call malocclusions).
Having straighter teeth can boost your self-confidence—along with helping you bite, breathe, chew, and even speak more effectively. Plus, teeth that are in good alignment and have adequate space in between are easier to clean; this can help you keep your mouth free of gum disease and tooth decay for years to come.
Many people think getting braces is something that happens in adolescence—but as long as your mouth is otherwise healthy, there's no upper age limit for orthodontic treatment. In fact, many celebrities—like Lauren Hutton, Tom Cruise and Faith Hill—got braces as adults. But if traditional braces aren't a good fit with your self-image, it's possible that one of the less noticeable options, such as lingual braces or clear aligners, could work for you.
What's the first step to getting straighter teeth? Come in to the office for an evaluation! We will give you a complete oral examination to find out if there are any problems (like gum disease or tooth decay) that could interfere with orthodontic treatment. Then we will determine exactly how your teeth should be re-positioned to achieve a better smile, and recommend one or more options to get you there.
If you have questions about orthodontic treatment, please contact our office or schedule a consultation. You can read more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “The Magic of Orthodontics” and “Lingual Braces: A Truly Invisible Way to Straighten Teeth.”
Cosmetic dentistry procedures dramatically improve the color, shape and even alignment of selected teeth. At Personalized Dentistry in Parlin, NJ and serving the Sayreville area, our dentist, Dr. Bhawna Bhatti, helps people reach their smile goals. Would you like to know what aesthetic procedure is right for you?
As unique as your fingerprint
That's your smile. It expresses your personality and no one else's. Plus, there's something else.
According to research cited by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, people base first impressions on smile appearance. If it's bright and shiny, you're attractive, approachable and smart. If it's dull, dingy and crooked, you're not so friendly or competent.
The cosmetic dentistry consultation
So, to match up who you are inside to how your smile looks on the outside, explore what our cosmetic dentist can do. Think about the changes you wish to achieve. Then, see Dr. Bhatti about a smile makeover. Simple or extensive, smile makeovers may address:
- Tooth color, shape, and size
- Flaws such as chips and cracks
- Alignment issues such as overbite, tooth rotation, gaps, crowding and protruding front teeth
- Unattractive, failing restorations (old crowns, metal fillings)
Your consultation will include a complete dental exam, X-rays and other imaging as needed. Good oral health is the proper foundation for any smile makeover.
Wondering what Dr. Bhatti offers? Here are just some of her aesthetic treatments. Some combine the best of cosmetic and restorative dentistry.
Bonding with tooth-colored composite resin repairs small enamel defects, restoring optimal tooth shape and size quickly and economically in just one visit.
Tooth whitening, offered as an at-home or in-office procedure, this affordable service removes years of deep dental stains using concentrated hydrogen peroxide gel.
Porcelain veneers, thin shells of translucent ceramic, disguise larger tooth defects and strengthen enamel. too. Veneers are permanently cemented on the front side of teeth, improving their appearance, shape and size.
Invisalign clear aligners straighten teeth with a series of custom-fabricated acrylic appliances which are comfortable, removable and almost invisible. Adults and teens quickly reap the many health benefits of smiles which look really good.
Snap-on Smiles are fully removable prosthetics which give people the perfect smiles they've always wanted without the extensive time and expense orthodontics involves.
Dental implants replace missing teeth with state of the art titanium screws inserted into the jaw for superior anchorage of posts and crowns. Dental implants also improve jaw bone quality for maximum oral-facial strength, balance and appearance.
Porcelain crowns, or caps, restore chipped, infected, heavily restored or malformed teeth with natural-looking and resilient ceramic. They support teeth above the gum line.
Tooth-colored fillings are made from realistic, strong and flexible composite resin. They substitute for old metal fillings, restoring tooth decay and beautifying tooth structure.
Make the right decisions
See Dr. Bhawna Bhatti at Personalized Dentistry in Parlin, NJ and serving the Sayreville area, for a friendly and informative consultation your smile appearance. She'll outline your choices and help you decide what services are right for you. Call the office today at (732) 721-3311.
For best results in cleaning your teeth of disease-causing plaque you need both the power of brushing open teeth surfaces and flossing in between them. But you may be wondering: should you perform one task before the other?
In general terms, no—there’s no solid evidence that flossing is better before brushing, or vice-versa. But that being said we do recognize each way has its own advantages.
If you floss before brushing, it’s possible you could loosen plaque that can then be easily brushed away when you perform your second hygiene task. Flossing first can also reveal areas that need a bit more attention from brushing if you suddenly encounter heavy particle debris or you notice a little bit of blood on the floss. And, by flossing first you may be able to clear away plaque from your tooth enamel so that it can more readily absorb the fluoride in toothpaste.
One last thing about flossing first: if it’s your least favorite task of the two and you’re of the “Do the Unpleasant Thing First” philosophy, you may want to perform it before brushing. You’re less likely to skip it if you’ve already brushed.
On the other hand, flossing first could get you into the middle of a lot sticky plaque that can gum up your floss. Brushing first removes a good portion of plaque, which can then make flossing a little easier. With the bulk of the plaque gone by the time you floss, you’ll not only avoid a sticky mess on your floss you’ll also have less chance of simply moving the plaque around with the floss if there’s a large mass of it present.
It really comes down to which way you prefer. So, brush first, floss last or vice-versa—but do perform both tasks. The one-two punch of these important hygiene habits will greatly increase your chances for maintaining a healthy mouth.
If you’ve noticed a small sore in your mouth, it’s possible you have a non-contagious disease known as lichen planus. Although usually benign, it’s still a good idea to have it examined and monitored.
The condition is so named because its lesions are similar in appearance to lichen, the algae and fungi organism often found on rocks and trees. It’s believed to be a type of autoimmune disease, in which the body treats some of its own cells as foreign and reacts adversely to them. Certain medications and substances may also cause a lichenoid reaction. Besides the inner cheeks, gums or tongue, lichen planus may also appear on other skin or mucous surfaces on the wrists, legs or fingernails.
When it appears inside the mouth it usually resembles a lacy pattern of white lines or ulceration. Gum tissues may become red and inflamed, with some soreness after brushing or eating. Although there’s no known cure for lichen planus, it rarely causes serious problems — in fact, you may not even be aware you have the condition unless pointed out during a dental exam. It may, in time, fade away.
If the lesions do become bothersome (painful, itchy or overly-sensitive), there are some ways to ease discomfort: brushing with a soft toothbrush (to minimize irritation), flossing, and avoiding acidic or spicy foods and beverages which have been known to cause flare-ups. Managing stress is also helpful, and a topical steroid may be prescribed for more severe outbreaks.
Perhaps the greatest concern with lichen planus, though, is it may resemble more serious conditions, particularly oral cancer. The only way to be certain that it is a benign condition is to perform a biopsy on some of the affected tissue. If you notice a problem, be sure to visit us for a complete examination. And regardless of whether you have the condition or not, regular oral cancer screenings, as well as limits on alcohol consumption and stopping use of tobacco, will also reduce your risk of oral cancer.
Odds are if you have a case of lichen planus it isn’t causing you any problems. If it does cause you discomfort, though, you can take steps to ease your symptoms.