21 Westbrook Court, East Ellijay, GA 30536, (706) 635-2218



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Posts for: May, 2015

By East Ellijay Family & Cosmetic Dentistry
May 24, 2015
Category: Oral Health

When Entertainment Tonight host Nancy O’Dell set out to teach her young daughter Ashby how to brush her teeth, she knew the surest path to success would be to make it fun for the toddler.

“The best thing with kids is you have to make everything a game,” Nancy recently said in an interview with Dear Doctor TV. She bought Ashby a timer in the shape of a tooth that ticks for two minutes — the recommended amount of time that should be spent on brushing — and the little girl loved it. “She thought that was super fun, that she would turn the timer on and she would brush her teeth for that long,” Nancy said.

Ashby was also treated to a shopping trip for oral-hygiene supplies with Mom. “She got to go with me and choose the toothpaste that she wanted,” Nancy recalled. “They had some SpongeBob toothpaste that she really liked, so we made it into a fun activity.”

Seems like this savvy mom is on to something! Just because good oral hygiene is a must for your child’s health and dental development, that doesn’t mean it has to feel like a chore. Equally important to making oral-hygiene instruction fun is that it start as early as possible. It’s best to begin cleaning your child’s teeth as soon as they start to appear in infancy. Use a small, soft-bristled, child-sized brush or a clean, damp washcloth and just a thin smear of fluoride toothpaste, about the size of a grain of rice.

Once your child is old enough to hold the toothbrush and understand what the goal is, you can let him or her have a turn at brushing; but make sure you also take your turn, so that every tooth gets brushed — front, back and all chewing surfaces. After your child turns 3 and is capable of spitting out the toothpaste, you can increase the toothpaste amount to the size of a pea. Kids can usually take over the task of brushing by themselves around age 6, but may still need help with flossing.

Another great way to teach your children the best oral-hygiene practices is to model them yourself. If you brush and floss every day, and have regular cleanings and exams at the dental office, your child will come to understand what a normal, healthy and important routine this is. Ashby will certainly get this message from her mom.

“I’m very adamant about seeing the dentist regularly,” Nancy O’Dell said in her Dear Doctor interview. “I make sure that I go when I’m supposed to go.”

It’s no wonder that Nancy has such a beautiful, healthy-looking smile. And from the looks of things, her daughter is on track to have one, too. We would like to see every child get off to an equally good start!

If you have questions about your child’s oral health, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Taking the Stress Out of Dentistry for Kids” and “Top 10 Oral Health Tips for Children.”

By East Ellijay Family & Cosmetic Dentistry
May 21, 2015
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Healthy food  

You've heard the old adage, "You are what you eat." There's a lot of truth to it, especially as it relates to oral health. Keeping teeth cavity-free and gums and supporting bone structure viable and strong takes more than brushing, flossing and going to the dentist for check-ups and Healthy Food cleanings.

While these are very important, they simply aren't enough. Your choice of food and drink can do your mouth a lot of good or a lot of damage. The look and longevity of your smile depend a lot on what you put in your mouth.

What are the best foods for oral health?

Of course, sugary foods are a well-known no-no because of the plaque they help form on tooth surfaces and at the gum line. Plaque harbors bacteria which secrete acids that erode tooth enamel. Also, foods such as tomatoes, lemons, and other citrus fruits are loaded with acids and should be consumed as part of a meal to limit their corrosive effects.

That being said, what food should you feed your family? The Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, outlines several good choices that should become part of any family's mealtime routines:

  1. Fruits and veggies - Particularly beneficial are crisply textured kinds such as apples, celery, and raw carrots. While these foods are nutritious, they also provide excellent exercise for teeth, gums, connective tissues, and jawbone.
  2. Whole grains - They provide nourishing fuel, and unlike refined white flour, they are less likely to stick to teeth.
  3. Low-fat or no-fat dairy products - Skim milk, cheese, and plain yogurt provide much-needed calcium and Vitamin D to strength bones and teeth in children all the way through senior years.
  4. Lean meats and fish
  5. Legumes and beans
  6. Plenty of water - The usual recommendation is eight cups a day. Water helps flush food particles from between the teeth, especially helpful when brushing is not at option at work or school.
  7. Sugarless gum - Yes, it helps to chew gum as this promotes saliva production (washing food and acids off the teeth).

Other dietary considerations and dental hygiene

In general, both the waistline and teeth benefit from less snacking between meals. However, when you or your family want to snack, choose fruit, cheese, veggies, milk and water. Avoid high calorie, sticky foods such candies and chips.

In addition to your healthy diet, be sure you and your loved ones brush with a good fluoride toothpaste two times a day and floss daily. Visit your East Ellijay, Georgia family dentist twice annually for check-ups and dental cleanings.

East Ellijay Family & Cosmetic Dentistry

Doctors David Settel, Cindy Hall, Ron Reid, and Wesley Burke want your bright, attractive smile to begin on the inside. Let these experienced and knowledgeable dentists support your efforts to feed your family a tooth-healthy diet. Call their staff for an appointment today at (706)635-2218.

By East Ellijay Family & Cosmetic Dentistry
May 09, 2015
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Veneers  

Porcelain veneers represent one of the best values in cosmetic dentistry, capable of radically changing a person’s smile with little tooth surface preparation. Still, the small amount of tooth enamel usually removed to accommodate them will permanently alter the affected teeth, to the point they will require a veneer or other restoration from then on.

The traditional veneer has remarkable versatility for solving a number of minor cosmetic problems, correcting mild tooth positioning problems and replacing lost or damaged enamel. But to avoid an unnatural bulky appearance, a portion of the tooth enamel must be permanently removed to accommodate them.

In recent years, though, a new concept known as “prepless veneers” has emerged in the field of cosmetic dentistry. Understandably, this new, “drill-free” veneer application has caused a lot of debate among dentists and patients alike, with concerns of bulky, overly-contoured teeth resulting from the technique. But the concept is growing as many well-regarded dentists have incorporated both minimal prep and prepless veneers into their service offerings.

The prepless veneer offers a cosmetic solution that doesn’t alter the tooth permanently. Using techniques such as feathering, which tapers and blends the veneer seamlessly with the tooth at the gum line, we can avoid an unnatural appearance while offering patients a much less invasive outcome.

The main disadvantage of prepless veneers at this time is that they’re not appropriate in every case. In fact, careful patient selection is a key to a successful outcome. For example, relatively large teeth or teeth positioned too far forward don’t work well with an added layer of thickness.

If, on the other hand, you have small, short or worn teeth, or teeth overshadowed by your lips — just to name a few likely scenarios — then you may benefit immensely from prepless veneers without permanent alteration to your teeth. A detailed examination is your first step to finding out if this new technique could provide you with a less-invasive smile makeover.

If you would like more information on drill-free porcelain veneers, 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 “Porcelain Veneers without the Drill.”