teeth cleaning

The A-Z of a Professional Teeth Cleaning

Teeth cleaning is an essential part of your oral care routine. 

Dental cleanings are typically performed by licensed dental professionals trained to remove plaque and tartar that are difficult to address at home. Unfortunately, most individuals avoid regular cleanings because they don’t know what happens in the process.

So what happens during teeth cleanings? Read on below to understand the A-Z of regular teeth cleaning.

The Process of Teeth Cleaning Explained

The main question on most peoples’ minds is what happens during a dental cleaning? Cleaning allows the dentist to go beyond the capabilities of simple flossing and brushing. They will use special equipment and teeth cleaning products to remove tartar and plaque from the surface of your teeth.

The dental professional will then floss between the teeth to clean the hard-to-reach surfaces. After the procedure, the dentist will polish your teeth to create a clean and smooth finish.

Dental cleaning is non-invasive and painless, and anesthesia isn’t needed in the process. The cleaning procedure can be performed very fast depending on the amount of plaque your teeth have built up. During dental cleanings, your dental professional will also check for other problems such as gum disease that could negatively impact your general health.

How Long Does Teeth Cleaning Last?

The teeth cleaning procedure could last anywhere between 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the dentist and the plaque buildup. During the procedure, you will lie comfortably in a dental chair while a professional examines your teeth.

The dentist will use special equipment to remove plaque and tar. They will also use a gentle abrasive paste to polish your teeth’ enamel.

Your teeth cleaning appointment may take longer if the dentist needs to perform an X-ray. Additionally, you may also discuss treatment options if the dentist discovers any problems with your teeth or gums.

Why You Should Include Teeth Cleaning in Your Oral Hygiene Routine

Your oral health starts with clean teeth. Teeth cleaning can help you keep your gums healthy and your teeth surface clean. Below are the main benefits of getting a professional dental cleaning:

Physical examination

During teeth cleaning, your dentist will perform a physical exam of your mouth. They will start with the process of gently examining your teeth, gums, jaw, and tongue for any diseases and problems.

This will help them pinpoint any gum inflammation or recession issues and cavities and formulate the right treatment option. A bigger percentage of the teeth cleaning process involves identifying potential problems before they become catastrophes.

Tartar and Plaque Removal

Plaque is a layer of food that forms on the teeth’ surface after eating. It can lead to oral problems such as tooth decay and gum disease. If plaque is left unchecked for long, it hardens into tartar.

Removing tartar from teeth can be quite difficult. During the cleaning procedure, your dentist will employ their skills and use special tools to get rid of tartar and plaque that has built up over time. 

While brushing your teeth and flossing regularly will significantly reduce harmful tartar and plaque buildup, there are numerous spots that people often miss. These spots include the backside of teeth, in between the teeth, and around the back molars.

Helps You Polish Your Teeth

After cleaning out the plaque and tartar, and there are no additional problems or treatments to discuss; your dentist will finish the procedure with a polish. Polishing will not only brighten up your smile but will also leave your teeth feeling smooth and clean.

Dental Cleaning Is Preventative

The most important reason for regular dental visits is to check how your teeth are progressing or improving with time. If there are any issues with your teeth that are worsening, cleaning will help you treat the disease or arrest the decay before it’s too late.

For example, during teeth cleaning, your doctor may identify signs of tooth decay. This will help you deal with the issue before it becomes worse and you need a root canal. When it comes to dental health, prevention is always best.

For this reason, oral hygiene includes a good diet low in sugar, regular flossing, and brushing. This promotes good health and helps you avoid illnesses related to oral health, keeping your body healthier for longer.

Types of Dental Cleaning

There are a few different types of dental cleanings. Knowing the difference between the three will help you determine the best cleaning for you. However, remember also to discuss your dental cleaning options with your dentist.

Below are the three types of dental cleaning:

Prophylaxis Cleaning

A prophylaxis cleaning is also known as a routine cleaning. It’s done on healthy individuals who only need regular oral cleaning to maintain oral hygiene. However, prophylaxis can’t be administered on damaged teeth; it’s only suitable for healthy teeth.

Most dental professionals recommend that patients get a prophylaxis cleaning twice per year. This will help you clean off any plaque buildup before it turns into tartar.

Scaling and Root Planing

Scaling and root planing is also known as deep cleaning. It’s usually administered to individuals who have developed gum disease in the past or at high risk of developing it. The dentist will check your teeth for signs of gum disease like swollen gums, loose teeth, and bleeding gums.

Once plague turns into calculus or tartar, it can cause serious oral health complications such as gum diseases. If this happens, scaling and root planing are required to make sure that the hardened plaque is removed.

Gross Debridement

A gross debridement is a type of dental cleaning administered on an individual by a dental professional to determine if they missed any teeth issues during a dental cleaning. It is often performed on patients who haven’t been to the dentist for over one year or have developed hardened plaque on their teeth.

Are You Considering Teeth Cleaning?

Teeth cleaning is an essential part of any dental hygiene routine. Some plague that forms on the surface of your teeth may be impossible to remove through brushing and flossing. Thus you will need professional teeth cleaning.

Are you thinking about teeth cleaning? Contact our experienced and licensed dental professionals at Justice Dental for all your teeth cleaning needs. Our highly professional dentists pay close attention to details and ensure that all your dental needs are met.

lexington dentist

Do-It-All Dental: The Best Lexington Dentist for Family Dental Care

Most people don’t know this, but your oral health is the window to your overall health. Because of this, it’s important for every member of your family to see a dentist regularly. If you don’t have already have a family dentist, it’s vital that you get one. For better convenience, you should choose a practice that has comprehensive dentistry services so you can get everything done under one roof. If you need a Lexington dentist that provides these services, look no further than Justice Dental.

Keep reading to see what services we provide for your entire family.

General Dentistry

General dentistry encompasses several services. Keep reading to see which ones you’ll benefit from at our dental practice.

Preventive Dentistry

One of the most important ones is preventive dentistry. You should schedule checkups at least once a year. A lot of dental damage cannot be reversed, so it’s important to keep up with preventive dentistry to minimize long-term problems.

For example, we can apply fluoride varnish, alternative fluoride-free MI paste, and dental sealants. Our team can also do oral DNA testing for periodontal disease so we can provide you with a personalized treatment plan to fight off systemic diseases.

Crowns

If you have weakened, discolored, or cracked teeth, our skilled dentists can give you dental crowns. In fact, we offer same-day dental crowns so you can restore your smile quickly!

We use custom-designed material so that your crowns will be as closely matched to your natural teeth as possible. You’ll be able to smile, eat, and talk normally.

Dental Bonding

Dental bonding is where the dentist applies resin to your tooth that matches in color. It’s then hardened with a special light to restore your tooth.

Bonding can be used to repair cavities, chipped teeth, or remove spaces. This is a less involved process (when compared to crowns) that restores your smile.

Cosmetic Dentistry

If you aren’t happy with how your teeth look, then you can look into cosmetic dentistry. Here are the services we provide at Justice Dental.

Dentures

Did you know that out of all the Americans who don’t have teeth, around 90% of them wear dentures? You might think of those rigid, uncomfortable dentures of your parents’ era and those don’t seem that appealing. But the reality is, technology’s made leaps and bounds since then!

We’re able to fit you with different types of dentures so they’re comfortable and feel almost like your own natural teeth. In fact, we use ceramic or porcelain teeth so they not only look better, but also last much longer.

We offer conventional and immediate dentures, as well as full or partial ones. Other options include implant retained dentures and hybrid denture utilizing implants.

Veneers

Veneers are basically small porcelain shells that go over your existing teeth. They can fix small imperfections, such as discoloration, chips, unevenness, and gaps.

This is an easy way to get the bright and even smile you’ve always wanted! While they’re not a permanent solution, it’s possible for a set to last over 10 or even 20 years.

Teeth Whitening

Many of us struggle with tooth discoloration. No matter how hard we try, the things we eat and drink, as well as the habit of smoking can cause our teeth to eventually become lackluster.

In-office teeth whitening can significantly brighten up your smile in ways that commercial at-home treatments can’t. It’s also much safer, as the dentist will know how to whiten your teeth without stripping the protective enamel. We do also offer take-home kits that are safe to use.

Not only do we have traditional teeth whitening services, but also KoR Whitening. This is an advanced solution that helps your teeth absorb oxygen better, which then enables them to absorb whitening gel much more effectively. KoR Whitening is permanent too!

Dental Surgeries

Some dental health issues are so serious that they require surgeries to correct. Thankfully, we’re able to provide this service at Justice Dental so you won’t have to worry about making appointments at a different practice.

One type of dental surgery you can get here is dental implants. This is a fantastic solution if you’re missing teeth and want to restore function. This is because the artificial teeth have metal “roots” that anchor in your jaw, which can prevent bone loss and other detrimental effects from missing teeth.

Our fantastic dentists can also perform full mouth reconstruction (FMR). This is an extensive and complex treatment that requires lots of experience, skill, and knowledge to perform, and you can trust that our dentists are the best of the best.

Dental Health

Justice Dental is here to help protect your dental health. This is why we offer things like Under Armour Performance Mouthwear. These are custom mouthpieces and mouthguards that you can use when playing sports to protect your teeth and gums.

We also understand that many people have dental anxiety and phobia regarding going to the dentist. This is why we offer sedation dentistry (both oral and IV) or nitrous oxide to help our patients relax and feel comfortable during their visits.

Choose Us as Your Lexington Dentist

As you can see, Justice Dental is the Lexington dentist office your family should go to. We offer everything from general dentistry to dental surgeries, plus we provide additional services to keep everyone comfortable and relaxed.

So look no further if you need family dental services in Lexington. We’ll be more than happy to help you and your family achieve beautiful and healthy smiles!

Do you need a family dentist in Lexington? Then get in touch with us today. One of our friendly team members will help you out!

cosmetic dental work

Whitening, Crowns, and Implants, Oh My! Cosmetic Dental Work 101

Whether you want whiter teeth or a straighter smile, cosmetic dental work can make it happen.

Before you talk to your dentist about this type of work, it’s important to know which procedures will help to improve your specific condition.

Read on to discover some helpful information about cosmetic dentistry so you can decide which options are right for you.

Dental Crowns

Crowns can protect a damaged tooth or cover a dental implant, and they’re typically used when a cavity has become too large. Over time, the cavity or abscess can threaten the integrity of the entire tooth. Rather than having it pulled, crowns for teeth protect what’s left and restore your natural smile.

This cosmetic dental work uses a special adhesive to attach the crown to your tooth, completely encapsulating the damaged tooth underneath. You’ll find dental crowns made of a variety of materials include resin, ceramic, and porcelain. 

Porcelain crowns are a popular option when you have one covering a tooth for cosmetic purposes. Due to its close resemblance to a natural tooth, many patients opt for porcelain since it looks more natural than resin or ceramic. 

Your cosmetic dentist may encourage you to get a crown to protect a weak, decaying, or cracked tooth. It can also restore the appearance of damaged teeth that are visibly worn or cover a discolored tooth to make your smile look white and even again.

In some cases, crowns are needed to secure a dental bridge or cover a large filling when not much of the original tooth is left. On average, dental crowns can last between five and 15 years, depending on how well you take care of it and your oral habits. 

Avoid chewing on ice, biting your fingernails, or grinding your teeth if you get a dental crown. With a bit of conscious care, this cosmetic dental work is a good option to restore a healthy smile.

Cosmetic Dental Work: Teeth Whitening

Yellowing or discolored teeth can hurt your smile and have negative effects on your self-confidence. Fortunately, professional teeth whitening can help to restore your teeth to their original beautiful white color.

You can purchase whitening toothpaste or dental whitening kits from most drugstores if you want to try this at home. However, a cosmetic dentist has access to more powerful tools and whitening products that will ensure you get your bright white smile back.

Aside from its effectiveness, professional teeth whitening works much faster than the DIY methods you’d try at home. On the other hand, the procedure costs much more and may not give you the results you desire. How white your smile looks after treatment will depend on your age, how much staining is present, and other factors.

Some store-bought whitening products can cause irritation of the gums. New professional products use thicker peroxide gels and contain other ingredients that will prevent your teeth and gums from feeling sore or inflamed.

Most teeth whitening treatments use a special gel that bleaches your teeth white. Depending on the technique your dentist uses or the severity of the stain, a bright light is also used to increase the intensity and speed of the whitening treatments.

Your dentist will check your gums for hypersensitivity. Too much bleach, peroxide, or other chemicals can cause pain and irritation in some patients. If that’s the case with you, they’ll likely recommend less potent treatments you can try at home.

Dental Implants

For those who need a permanent solution to dental woes, implants can be an excellent choice. Dental implants use a small metal post made of titanium or another type of metal to replace the root of the tooth.

An abutment or connector is built into the top of the dental implant and is attached to the replacement tooth. A crown and replacement tooth are then custom-fabricated to match your natural teeth as closely as possible. You can get one dental implant or several depending on your budget and your needs.

While dental implants cost more than some other cosmetic dental work, they’re a permanent fix for people with serious dental issues. The ability to have each tooth custom made ensures that the final outcome looks as natural as possible.

Once the dental implant procedure is complete, your new teeth will not make clicking sounds or slip when you eat or talk. Aside from the many cosmetic benefits of dental implants, they also stay securely in place to keep your jawbone intact. Your facial structure should not be affected nor change after getting dental implants.

You may think that getting dental implants is a complicated or even dangerous process. However, this is considered a routine procedure and is now a common preference of thousands of patients and dentists alike due to its high success rate. If your jawbone is strong and can support the implant, you’re likely a good candidate.

Another perk to getting dental implants is that they’re not vulnerable to cavities or decay since they’re made of materials that are not affected in the same way that your natural teeth are. As soon as your dental implants and the areas around them heal, you can continue to brush and floss normally.

Restore Your Smile Today

With the right cosmetic dental work, you can restore your smile and get your confidence back. From teeth whitening and porcelain crowns to dental implants, each of these procedures is designed to help you look and feel your best.

If you’re interested in any of these services, contact us today to schedule a consultation with one of our professional dentists in Lexington to find out how we can help.

dentist in lexington, ky

Looking For a Dentist in Lexington, KY – What Is Preventive Dentistry?

Two of the most common reasons people avoid preventative dental care are lack of time and finances. Another major reason is fear.

Despite that, preventative dentistry is extremely important not just for your teeth, but your entire body as well. When dental problems progress, the are chances the damage is irreversible. 

If you’re on the fence about visiting a dentist in Lexington, KY, let’s put your mind at ease and look at why preventative dentistry is needed. 

What is Preventative Dentistry?

Preventative dentistry is the practice of regularly caring for your teeth by using good oral hygiene techniques and practices. In this way, you maintain the health of your teeth and body. 

Without preventative dentistry, you may succumb to oral and other health problems such as:

  • Gum disease, like gingivitis and periodontal disease
  • Loss of teeth
  • Oral cancers
  • Tooth decay
  • Bacterial infections
  • Heart problems
  • Cavities
  • Complications from diabetes

As you can see, caring for your teeth and mouth is critical to your health. Many of these problems are detected at dentist’s appointments and in some cases, like gingivitis, may be reversed to save your teeth and gums. 

Children, especially, need to develop healthy oral habits as early as possible in life to avoid the pain and frustration that may follow from poor oral care. 

Types of Preventative Dentistry

So, what are the types of preventative dentistry and why are they important? Here are a few to consider. 

1. Dental Cleanings

One of the best and easiest ways to preserve and protect your teeth is to schedule regular dental cleanings. 

Over time, plaque forms on your teeth, and when it’s not removed, it turns into tartar. Tartar eats away at the gum line and may cause gum disease. Regular dental cleanings keep plaque and bacteria at bay. 

Your dentist also checks for dental problems, so visiting your dentist may help you find potential problems that could become worse over time. 

2. Sealants

Cavities are one of the main reasons that people visit the dentist. When food particles become stuck on the teeth or sit for too long, cavities form and they need to be removed and filled. 

However, if you opt for sealants, you can lower your chances of cavities significantly. Sealants are a thin coating that covers the top of your tooth and acts as a shield against food particles. They’re especially beneficial for children who need to develop their brushing habits over time. 

3. Oral Testing

Periodontal disease affects nearly half of adults living in the United States. While this is a sobering statistic, there are services offered to find out if you’re at risk.

Oral DNA testing is a type of diagnostic dentistry that looks at the type of bacteria that’s in your mouth and determines what treatments work best to combat it and avoid deadly diseases. This form of preventative care gives you peace of mind, as your dentist works with you to give you the utmost care.

4. Fluoride Treatments

Fluoride is an important mineral that’s necessary for the health of your teeth. When you visit your dentist they may recommend a fluoride varnish to strengthen your teeth. This treatment can be done every few months depending on the health of your teeth. 

Children receive fluoride at their visits because their teeth are still growing and forming. 

5. Restorative and Cosmetic Procedures

You might be thinking, “What are restorative dentistry and cosmetic procedures?”

While these types of dentistry are not considered preventative, they can improve the look and feel of your mouth, which in turn may cause you to care for your teeth more. 

Restorative dentistry includes fixing oral problems that arise from traumatic situations like injury or illness. Cosmetic dentistry involves methods or techniques to whiten or straighten your teeth. 

The Patient’s Roll in Preventative Dentistry

While the dentist plays a vital role in your oral care, you can help! There are several preventative measures you can take in your dental care before you step into a dentist’s office. 

Here are some ways that you help protect your teeth.

1. Healthy Oral Habits

Regular brushing and flossing are tried-and-true methods of keeping your teeth healthy and strong. You should be brushing after meals, in the evening before bed, and flossing once a day.

These practices will go a long way in warding off any type of oral problems like gum disease and keep other expensive costs at bay. 

2. Healthy Eating

Consuming healthy foods like fruits, vegetables, grains, meat, and dairy all aid in keeping your mouth clean and healthy. Added sugars or processed foods cause bacteria build-up on your teeth and may cause problems. Crunchy foods like carrots help remove bacteria and other build-ups on your teeth

Also, indulging in sweet foods deprives your teeth and body of the nutrients it needs to maintain good bone health. 

3. Visiting the Dentist

Visiting your dentist at least yearly is recommended, and sometimes twice a year depending on your situation. Regular dental cleanings will remove all the harmful bacteria from your gums and teeth.

Your dentist can also offer you oral education on the best ways to care for your teeth at home. They may even provide you with a toothbrush, floss, or mouthwash. 

Do You Need a Dentist in Lexington, KY?

By visiting your dentist and taking your role in preventative dentistry, you can feel confident about having a healthy mouth and teeth in the future. Preventative dentistry is there to help!

Are you looking for a dentist in Lexington, KY? Our caring team of professionals at Justice Dental can help! Contact us today with questions or to set up your appointment. 

cosmetic dentist in lexington ky

Cosmetic Dentist in Lexington, KY – Benefits of Dental Veneers

How do you feel about your teeth?

It’s okay if you’re not satisfied with your smile. That’s what we’re here for. Offering you a new smile is one of the best things we can do as your cosmetic dentist in Lexington KY.

If you’re looking for a simple solution that promises great results, veneers are a great option. With their durability and gorgeous appearance, your teeth will be in the best shape of their life.

We’ve put together a guide on the benefits of dental veneers here. Continue reading to see how veneers add to your smile and to your life.

What Are Dental Veneers?

Dental veneers are porcelain shells made to fit directly over your original teeth in order to hide cracks, discoloration, gaps, or uneven tooth structure.

Veneers do not mimic dentures in the way that they’re permanent and meant to fix to your natural teeth.

Veneers are custom-made by your dentist to match your existing teeth perfectly, allowing you to have a natural, white smile. These porcelain or composite caps slide over your teeth to improve their appearance effortlessly.

Dental veneers are permanently fixed to your teeth in a worry-free, easy procedure that will leave you smiling from ear to ear.

Veneers: Benefits and Side Effects

Some benefits of veneers are that they’re a quick fix, they improve your tooth structure, and they’ll make you want to take care of your teeth even more. 

Side effects that you might have include slight tooth sensitivity, you won’t be able to replace your veneers, and that you’ll have to avoid certain foods or drinks. 

However, the pros outweigh the cons when it comes to veneers–let’s look at some great benefits veneers have to offer.

Veneers Are an Instant Fix

The best thing about dental veneers is that they’re usually a 2-step procedure. 

Your dentist will usually schedule several appointments with you to start your process of getting veneers. You will start by getting an imprint of your teeth and molding the veneers, and the next visit will be to put your veneers on.

The great thing about this is that your veneers will be fixed onto your teeth in no time–rather than some other cosmetic dental problems that take months or even years to fix.

They’re Just Like Natural Teeth

Veneers are great in the way that they look and function just like your natural teeth do. 

You’ll treat your veneers the same way as your normal teeth by brushing and flossing as much as usual. Avoiding dark drinks and food as well as difficult things to chew will help keep your veneers looking and functioning as they should.

Porcelain veneers are extremely durable and beneficial. Even with the aftercare for these new teeth, you can be confident that your veneers aren’t going anywhere.

Veneers Hide Imperfections

If you’re struggling with chipped teeth, gaps, or discolorations in your smile, veneers might be a great way to help you gain back your confidence. 

Veneers cover your original teeth with a coating of natural-looking porcelain to match your neighboring teeth, allowing you to hide discolored or chipped teeth.

If you want to get just one veneer or several, choosing veneers for confidence purposes is perfectly normal.

They Improve Your Tooth Structure

Gaps in your teeth can cause some inconsistencies within your tooth structure, especially for those teeth fronting your smile.

Getting dental veneers to fill those gaps will improve the way your teeth look by giving you a constant pearly-white strip. This will also help with chewing food by reducing gaps in your mouth. This results in an easier way of life and less stress on you.

Dental Veneers Boost Your Confidence

A perfect smile is a perfect way to boost your confidence. 

Veneers help boost appearances by molding to your natural smile, enhancing your teeth in a subtle way. Not only do dental veneers match your teeth, but they also whiten them naturally.

While veneers are whiter than natural teeth, the color match that your dentist does ensures that your full smile will look even whiter than before. 

When fitting veneers, you’ll be able to approve your new smile. You may decide that you want the perfect smile, but remember that everyone’s smile is perfect in its own way. Veneers only help that!

You’ll Take Better Care of Your Teeth

It’s common for those with veneers to take even better care of their teeth than before. 

Like natural enamel, veneers are susceptible to discoloration or chips. However, people with veneers take more care of their new teeth because of the desire to keep their smile looking as great as ever. You can say yes to beautiful teeth and better oral hygiene.

What Does a Procedure Look Like?

The great thing about putting veneers on your teeth is that the procedure is a simple, minimally invasive operation. Your dentist will fit your veneers, shave the front surface of the treated teeth down, and put your new teeth on with a special concreting agent.

You’ll need little to no anesthesia for this procedure and you’ll be able to walk away with a brand-new smile.

How Long Do Porcelain Veneers Last?

Veneers function just like natural teeth, allowing you to eat, drink, brush, and floss exactly the same that you would normally. Because these mimic your natural teeth, you can expect to see them last about 10 to 20 years.

Keeping your veneers safe from excessive stains caused by dark foods and drinks will also help them last longer in terms of their appearance. 

Getting Veneers at Your Cosmetic Dentist in Lexington KY

Veneers offer a plethora of benefits for those who get them–so if you’re considering it, you should go ahead and get a consultation with your cosmetic dentist in Lexington KY.

Getting fit for your new teeth will change your smile and your life. All it takes is a step in the right direction.

If this article helped you learn more about veneers and the benefits they offer, take a look at our Veneer Dental Resources

how to keep teeth white

How to Keep Your Teeth White After a Professional Whitening Procedure

Almost half of American adults consider a bright white smile the most important component of the proverbial first impression. 

The popularity of professional teeth whitening services is thus unsurprising. According to some estimates, more than 45 million Americans have pursued professional whitening services.

Professional whitening is a safe and highly effective way to improve your smile. However, choosing professional whitening services still requires at-home maintenance. 

Read on to find out how to keep teeth white after professional cosmetic dentistry procedures.

How to Keep Teeth White

Teeth whitening aftercare requires being proactive and vigilant about how you treat your teeth. This means paying attention to your diet and dental hygiene routine.

1. Brush Twice, Floss Once

It goes without saying that white teeth are healthy teeth, and healthy teeth require regular cleanings.

The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends brushing the teeth for two minutes twice daily. It also recommends flossing once a day.

Regular brushing and flossing can prevent food and drink from staining the teeth. They can also help keep teeth white by removing bacteria and plaque.

Finally, proper dental hygiene prevents tooth decay, which can discolor teeth and cause a host of other cosmetic and health problems.

2. Brush with an Electric Toothbrush and Whitening Toothpaste

If you want to up your dental hygiene game, invest in an electric toothbrush and opt for whitening toothpaste.

Electric toothbrushes themselves don’t whiten teeth, and they cannot remove internal stains. No toothbrush or toothpaste can. Therefore, they are not a substitute for professional teeth whitening.

However, electric toothbrushes are more effective at removing plaque and external stains than regular brushes. Thus, they can be a helpful part of your teeth whitening aftercare routine.

Whitening toothpaste, too, can help you maintain your bright white smile. 

Compared to regular toothpaste, whitening toothpaste tends to use more abrasive ingredients, like silica and baking soda. Along with vigorous brushing, these ingredients can remove surface stains.

Keep in mind, though, that when used excessively, whitening toothpaste can damage the enamel of your teeth and irritate gums. Some people also experience tooth sensitivity when using whitening toothpaste.

It’s wise, therefore, to limit your use of whitening toothpaste to a few times a week. Also always choose a whitening toothpaste that has the ADA seal of approval.

3. Visit Your Dentist Regularly

Another component of a healthy dental hygiene routine is the preventative checkup. You should visit your dentist for a professional cleaning and checkup every six months. 

While an electric toothbrush is stronger than a manual brush, your dentist’s tools are more powerful still. At your regular checkup, your dentist will clean your teeth and remove tartar that your at-home cleanings simply can’t.

Your dentist will also look for—and, if necessary, treat—early signs of periodontal disease and decay. 

4. Limit Consumption of Foods That Stain Teeth

The obvious culprits when it comes to discolored teeth are coffee, black tea, and red wine.

However, other intensely colored foods can also stain teeth. These include:

  • Coke
  • Sports drinks
  • Dark-colored fruits and fruit juices
  • Marinara and other tomato-based sauces
  • Soy sauce
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Curry
  • Candy

Beyond this list, you can also keep the t-shirt test in mind. If a substance can stain a white t-shirt, it can stain your teeth.

It’s unlikely that you’ll be able—or want—to avoid the above food and drink options entirely. However, you can cut back on your consumption of them.

You should also remember to brush promptly after eating or drinking substances that can stain your teeth. At the very least, rinsing your mouth with water after a meal can limit the damage.

Finally, you can try using a straw to drink intensely colored liquids, like coffee, Coke, or tea.

5. Enjoy Food and Drink Options That Promote Healthy Teeth

While certain foods stain teeth, other foods help you maintain your bright smile.

Dairy products are among the best options to promote dental health and whiter teeth. So after a whitening procedure, fill your diet with milk, cheese, yogurt, and cottage cheese.

Fruits and vegetables, like apples, pears, celery, and carrots, are also ideal. These foods trigger your salivary glands. Saliva neutralizes acid and helps remove food particles and other debris that can cause stains or decay.

Finally, eggs, poultry, salmon, and other lean meats and fish contribute protein and other nutrients that keep teeth strong.

6. Chew Sugarless Gum

Enjoying sugarless gum is another way to promote saliva production. While it’s no substitute for brushing, chewing sugarless gum also helps keep teeth clean.

7. Quit Smoking

Smoking is among the worst culprits when it comes to discolored teeth.

Tobacco leaves brown stains on the surface of teeth. Over time, these stains penetrate more deeply and become more difficult to remove.

Smoking also contributes to gum disease, bad breath, and countless other health problems, including cancer.

If you’ve invested in professional teeth whitening, such as KoR Whitening, therefore, it’s important, too, to invest in your overall health by quitting smoking.

Kicking the habit will not only protect your bright white smile. By reducing your risk for serious illness and death, you’ll also have more reasons to use it. 

8. Be Aware of Medications and Other Chemicals That Stain Teeth

Certain medications and other chemicals can lead to discolored teeth. These include:

  • Certain antihistamines, antipsychotics, and blood pressure medicines
  • Excessive iron
  • Excessive fluoride
  • Certain ingredients, such as chlorhexidine or cetylpyridinium chloride, in antibacterial mouthwashes

In children, tetracycline, an antibiotic, can also cause the teeth to take on a grayish appearance.

Being aware of the potential relationship between medications and tooth discoloration is important. Equally, important, though, is maintaining your overall health. You should never stop taking a medication without your doctor’s approval.

If you are concerned about medications staining your teeth, talking to your doctor is a good first step. He or she can help you determine if your medications are the culprit. If they are, your doctor can help you protect your health and your smile.

Rediscover and Protect Your Smile with Professional Teeth Whitening Aftercare

Now that you know how to keep teeth white, it’s up to you to put your plan into action.

No matter where you are in that process, Justice Dental is here to help. 

Maybe you’re still looking for the right professional whitening service. Or maybe you’ve had your teeth whitened but need to schedule a check-up.

Maybe, finally, you know you need dental work. However, you can’t make it into the office right now and need a virtual consultation.

Whatever your circumstances, Justice Dental is your dentist for a lifetime. Contact us today.

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5 Questions to Ask Your Lexington Dentist During Your Next Visit

Do you or your family require a Lexington dentist?

If you’re like many Americans who feel anxious at their dentist visit, your mind probably goes blank. Have you considered that asking the right questions might help you and your dentist take better care of your teeth?

According to the National Center for Health Statistics, almost a third of adults in the U.S. have untreated dental caries (tooth decay)! According to that same source, less than two-thirds of them visited the dentist in the past year. Unfortunately, only half of adults attend a dental visit at the recommended six-monthly interval.

If you want to take great care of your mouth, you need to treat a dental visit like a primary care appointment. Ask the right questions and understand your oral health so you can work together with your dentist.

Here, we’ll explain what to ask, how your dentist might answer, and what you should know. Read on!

1. Why Do My Teeth Hurt?

If you’re asking this question, there may be necessary changes. Because dental pain doesn’t always leave visual clues, this is a great example of why a patient’s questions are valuable to your Lexington dentist.

Your mouth pain may feel like a tooth problem, but instead could be an issue with your gums, for instance, if they are receding. By drawing attention to the pain, your dentist can x-ray the offending area and look for cracks or signs of tooth decay. Cracks can extend down to the root of the tooth, or a loose filling could be the cause.

Tooth sensitivity can be triggered by sugary or acidic foods, as well as hot or cold drinks. Your dentist will probably advise steering clear of foods that damage enamel. 

Brushing with too much force can damage the enamel and expose nerves, so your dentist may recommend switching to a softer brush. Additional treatments include toothpaste for sensitive teeth, fluoride gel, or sealants.

2. How Is My Dental Hygiene?

Although you may not want to hear the answer, it’s important to have a good idea of how you’re doing with your oral care routine. If you’re diligent with brushing twice a day for around two minutes and flossing once, you’re on the right track.

Don’t skip those bi-annual exams and cleanings. Bitewing x-rays are typically performed annually with a full mouth x-ray every 4-5 years. Patients at higher risk for tooth decay may require x-rays every six-months.

Let your Lexington dentist know if you have any bad habits that might impact your oral health. Tobacco products and grinding your teeth are known to be problematic, so ask your dentist for advice on solutions.

If you have a sweet-tooth, try and rinse your mouth out with water at times when you are unable to brush your teeth. Because sugary and acidic substances weaken the tooth enamel, dentists recommend waiting about an hour before brushing. If your dentist recommends any special rinse or fluoride gel, make sure to follow the directions.

Prescription mouthwash often kills bacteria that is responsible for gum irritation and plaque/biofilm. Unchecked gingivitis can escalate to full-blown gum disease.

Fluoride is a mineral that not only prevents the progression of tooth decay but can also reverse the early stages.

3. Do I Need a Cosmetic Dentist?

Do you have stains on the exterior surfaces of your dental enamel? Certain foods and drinks are known to stain teeth. The main offenders are coffee, wine, soda, and tobacco.

You might have considered tooth whitening, but you should be cautious about trying some of the over-the-counter and mail-order options. This is because some of the home whitening kits may be harsh on your dental enamel and may lead to tooth sensitivity. Your Lexington dentist will be able to advise you on professional teeth whitening options.

Some external staining may be from internal tooth damage, and if you aren’t happy with the appearance, your dentist can help. Veneers are one cosmetic option that can correct staining that bleaching won’t whiten. These thin covers on the front of your teeth are also perfect for correcting a chipped tooth or teeth worn down from grinding.

If you have missing teeth, implants can restore your smile, as well as your self-esteem. A tooth with extensive fillings may benefit aesthetically and functionally from a beautiful and natural-looking crown.

4. When Do You Need a Family Dentist?

If you’ve recently started a family, you’ll want to know when you need to start bringing your little ones in for dental visits. Pediatric dentists advise that a child should visit the dentist by their first birthday or within six months of the first tooth eruption.

Remember that your overall health can affect your dental health, including vitamin deficiencies, conditions like diabetes, and osteoporosis. Conversely, poor oral health can lead to negative overall health, increasing your risk of heart disease or stroke.

Be proactive in establishing good dental hygiene habits for your family.

5. Can You Correct My Misalignment?

Your Lexington dentist is skilled at preventative dentistry, fitting crowns, and applying dental sealants and bonds. We use non-metal resin fillings and offer a gum treatment/oral wellness program.

If you need a cosmetic smile restoration or other enhancement, we also have you covered. We can correct misalignment issues with clear braces, perform a gum lift (contouring), or provide a full mouth rehabilitation.

Whatever questions you still have, our highly trained staff are happy to answer them. Our friendly team members can make you an appointment and help you achieve a smile that says: “Wow!”

Need a Lexington Dentist?

We’ve shown that a Lexington dentist has the answers to keep your teeth healthy and beautiful. Don’t let waiting room anxiety prevent you from asking the questions that are important to you.

If you need a dentist in Lexington, KY, we can help you. We are a world-class dental practice, and we want to be your dentist for a lifetime. Our services include general, family, and cosmetic dentistry. 

Contact us today to join the Justice Dental family.

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