young woman smiling

Posted & filed under General Dentistry.

A healthy smile is definitely a powerful tool. It can change the mood in a room. It can convey confidence and professionalism, even if you’re not feeling it. You can hear someone smiling over the phone, without even seeing their face light up. My dental office in Collierville knows the importance of a great first impression because it needs to leave a lasting impression. That’s why we make sure your teeth and gums are healthy so that your smile is one you’ll be proud to share with everyone.

Your Personality is Showing

A smile projects a more positive vibe, friendly and approachable attitude, along with inherent leadership skills. It’s been shown that humans will smile more depending on who is at the other end of the conversation. During our initial contact with other people, our first impressions and assessments are usually made within seconds. Most of the time this is all being subliminally so we’re not even aware we’re doing it.

Your Teeth Tell A Story

Hippocrates believed that every person belongs to one of four different types of temperaments. And believe it or not, your teeth determine what group you belong to. This is known as Morphopsychology-Visagism and it’s the possible connection between your personality and your teeth shape. Your dentist in Collierville wants to know what category you belong to!

  1. Melancholic/Sensitive = Oval-Shaped Teeth

Personality traits include: Artistic, perfectionist, organized, reserved, timid, and abstractive

  1. Sanguine/Dynamic = Triangle-Shaped Teeth

Personality traits include: Impulsive, extroverted, communicative, enthusiastic, and eager

  1. Choleric/Strong = Rectangular-Shaped Teeth

Personality traits include: Intense, objective, explosive, intense, passionate, and entrepreneurial

  1. Phlegmatic/Peaceful = Square-Shaped Teeth

Personality traits include: Conformist, discreet, diplomatic, mystic, and spiritualized

Sharing your smile with the world is important in so many ways. It conveys your intent and personality. Your smile even has the ability to boost another person’s mood, making them more happy in the process. My Collierville dental office wants to help you put your best smile out there and ensure your true confidence and charisma always shine through.

anxious woman in dental chair

Posted & filed under General Dentistry, Oral Health.

Whether it’s been a couple of months, a couple of years, or even a couple of decades since you’ve seen your dentist in Collierville, please know you’re not alone. We see patients frequently who are hesitant to schedule an appointment just because it’s been such a long time since they were seen by a dentist. Having a gap (big or small) between appointments is more common than you think and we’re here to let you know what to expect your first visit back so you can feel comfortable!

There’s No Time Like Right Now

There are a number of reasons why patients put off visiting our Collierville dental office. Sometimes it’s due to insurance. Other times patients put off making an appointment because of a bad experience with a previous dental health care provider. Maybe life is just too busy or hectic and it’s just not something you think about until you have an issue. Please know it’s never too late to get a checkup and learn more about your oral heath. In fact, the sooner you come see us, the better!

“What Can I Do To Prepare for My First Appointment?”

Don’t be nervous! We’re here to help and are excited to welcome both new and returning patients into our dental family. It’s always a good idea to arrive a little early to make sure the necessary paperwork is in order. (And it gives you a few minutes to meet all the friendly folks who work in the office.) Be sure to jot down all of the current medications you’re taking and also any questions you may want to ask.

“What Can I Expect at The Exam?”

No matter how long it’s been since you’ve seen the dentist, every patient will receive a thorough exam and x-rays. This information is crucial because it allows for a more personalized assessment of your oral health. We will also check the status of your gums to look for any indication of disease. Things like broken or missing teeth, cavities, etc. are relatively common and we simply chart everything to make sure we have a clear picture of any immediate and possible future treatment needs. Your exam is also a good time to let our dental team know about any other issues we should be aware of such as aches, pains, clenching, grinding, etc.

We’re positive that once you’re in our dental office in Collierville, you’ll feel right at home. There’s no better time to take charge of your oral health so you enjoy better overall health too. If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to give us a call! We can’t wait to see you.

biscotti

Posted & filed under General Dentistry, Restorative Dentistry.

Food is such an important part of our lives. Not only is it crucial for our health, it’s historically pretty important for our relationships too. We meet friends over dinner, we snack on the couch with loved ones while watching a movie, and we even join blind dates for a cup coffee. At our dental office in Collierville, we understand the importance of food and really enjoying what you eat. But we also know how some foods can damage teeth. For this blog, we’ve compiled some of the top types of food that are the worst for teeth.  

  • BiscottiThis Italian treat is known for its hard, crunchy texture which is why it’s usually eaten after being dunked in a beverage. However, this difficult to bite biscuit can cause cracks or chips if it’s too hard.
  • PopcornA movie watching favorite, the dangers of popcorn lurks in the often unseen kernels. A quick, hard bite onto one of these hard kernels can chip teeth or destroy restorations.
  • Pitted TreatsSnacks like olives sometimes contain a hidden pit. Again, like the culprits above, an accidental nibble of a pit can cause some serious tooth damage.
  • Chewy Candy Candy in general is typically bad news, but chewy ones can be the worst of all. Due its sticky nature, the sugar-loaded sweet is left clinging to teeth for prolonged periods of time and it can also dislodge fillings.
  • Ice CubesThese frozen cubes of water can be used to chill a beverage or even for an injury, but they shouldn’t be eaten. Hard ice can not only break teeth, they also create tiny cracks that leave the enamel open to bacteria and, in turn, cavities.
  • Bones While we don’t tend to choose bones to eat or to gnaw on, they are found in several foods. Some bones are easy to see and we can usually avoid those, but some bones aren’t noticed until it’s too late. Be cautious when eating stews, certain types of fish, or chicken.

While we’d love our patients to avoid these foods altogether in order to greatly reduce the risk of dental damage, we understand that’s unrealistic. Instead, we’d be happy if they just used a bit of caution while enjoying the treats above. More importantly, if something were to happen while chowing down, we want to encourage them to schedule an appointment at our dental office in Collierville as soon as possible. The sooner we can evaluate and treat any damage, the less likely there will be additional issues.

male dentist examines dental x-rays

Posted & filed under General Dentistry.

When you come to your appointments at our dental office in Collierville, there’s a good chance we may recommend taking some x-rays of your mouth. And for good reason. Dental x-rays are critical in helping us detect a number of potential oral health problems early, often making treatment easier and more affordable. What our patients may not know is there are various types of dental x-rays that are appropriate to help diagnose different issues. In this blog, we cover some of the most common types of dental x-rays and why dentists use them.

Two Main Categories of X-Rays

When referring to dental x-rays, or radiographs, we are either referencing intraoral x-rays or extraoral x-rays. Extraoral x-rays take a view of the entire mouth structure, including the teeth, jaw, and skull while intraoral x-rays are more about the details of each tooth. Each category of x-ray is beneficial in its own way, depending on what your dentist in Collierville is looking for.

Intraoral X-Rays

Since intraoral x-rays show such a detailed view of the teeth, they’re great at helping dentists identify specific problems that otherwise would be undetectable including:

The most common type of x-rays taken at most dental offices fall into the intraoral category and are known as bitewing x-rays. Bitewings x-rays are used so frequently because they can successfully detect even the tiniest cavity that the naked eye wouldn’t be able to see. When caught early, cavities are much easier to treat.

Extraoral X-Rays

The images produced from extraoral x-rays often show the bigger picture and look at the entire anatomy of the mouth and skull. Extraoral x-rays can help examine:

  • Tooth Growth & Development
  • The Relationship Between the Teeth & Jaw
  • Impacted Teeth

If you need an extraoral x-rays, you’ll most likely have a panoramic x-ray taken. The photos from a panoramic x-ray show the entire mouth and are helpful in diagnosing problems with your jaw joint (TMJ), developing wisdom teeth, or even a tumor.

Dental x-rays are incredibly safe as they emit a low amount of radiation. But that doesn’t mean you should go crazy and get as many as possible. How often you should get dental x-rays taken depends on your age and your oral health. If you’re at higher risk for decay, our Collierville dental office may recommend x-rays at each visit twice a year. If not, we may only suggest them once a year. Either way, having x-rays of your mouth completed regularly will help keep your smile healthy.

oral cancer awareness

Posted & filed under Oral Health, Prevention.

Every year, April is recognized as Oral Cancer Awareness Month. At our dental office in Collierville, we strive to keep our patients and our neighbors as healthy as possible, so we’d like to join in and help educate our community on the risks of oral cancer, how to identify it, and why it’s best to identify it as early as possible.

Fast Facts

  • About 49,000 Americans will be diagnosed with a type of oral cancer this year alone
  • Over 9,700 will die from oral cancer in 2017
  • Only an estimated 57% of those diagnosed this year will still be alive in 5 years
  • Patients who have beaten oral cancer once are up to 20 times more likely to develop another form of cancer

Early Diagnosis

One of the main reasons oral cancer is so deadly, and those numbers above are so scary, is that most of the time, oral cancer is caught too late and may have already spread to another part of the body. Unlike other types of cancer, there are no official timing guidelines for screening for oral cancer, like there are for, say, colon or breast cancer. This is one reason why we recommend seeing your dentist in Collierville at least every six months for a thorough examination. If caught in its early stages, oral cancer can be treated successfully.

Signs & Symptoms

The difficult part to suspecting and diagnosing oral cancer is that its signs and symptoms can disguise themselves as other oral health problems that don’t seem like a big deal, only a minor annoyance. If you notice any of the signs below, call your dentist as soon as you can.

  • A sore or discoloration that doesn’t go away after two weeks
  • A lump inside the mouth or neck
  • Pain while swallowing, chewing, or speaking
  • Changes in voice
  • Chronic bad breath

Risk Factors

Understanding the risks that increase the chance of developing oral cancer can go a long way in helping to prevent it. While some risk factors are uncontrollable, there are some that you can control and avoid:

  • Men are twice as likely to develop oral cancer than women
  • Oral cancer typically develops in those over 40
  • About 80% of oral cancer patients are, or have been, tobacco users
  • Drinking alcohol heavily also increases your risk  

If you suspect you’re at risk for oral cancer or have additional questions, we welcome you to call our Collierville dental office.

Now accepting new patients from Collierville, Germantown and beyond. 

woman asking why

Posted & filed under General Dentistry.

Some of the treatments we offer at our dental office in Collierville require us to administer an anesthetic to first numb the area prior to beginning the procedure. We do everything we can to keep the process easy, comfortable, and totally pain free so that you become nice and numb and don’t feel anything during treatment. However, sometimes we encounter patients that have more trouble getting numb than others. We’d like to explain a few possible reason as to why this happens.

Nerves on Fire!

Well, not literally on fire, but in the dental world we do refer to a really painful tooth as a ‘hot tooth’ since the pain feels like it’s on fire. In reality, it’s not actually the tooth that’s making it hurt so badly, it’s the nerves. When there’s a case of ‘hot tooth,’ nerves can become particularly difficult to numb for a few reasons. First, the nerves can be overly excited and even the smallest thing can send zingers of pain shooting. When in this excited state, nerves require more anesthetic than usual. The nerves can also develop additional pain receptors. More receptors means more anesthetic, more anesthetic means more difficulty getting numb.

Don’t Move!

We know we’re asking a lot — don’t move while we inject the anesthetic into your gums — but trust us, staying still makes the process easier and reduces the risk of needing to do it again. We promise to do everything we can help you relax and make the process as painless as possible. If you’re nervous, talk to us. We’re here to help.

The Head Bone is Connected to The…

Years of education and training has taught your Collierville dentist exactly where to administer an injection to directly hit the nerve in order to achieve optimal numbness. Sounds great, right? Well, even though we’ve all got anatomy that’s pretty similar, it is just that — pretty similar. Meaning that not everyone is built the same way, and sometimes the nerve isn’t where we expect it to be. If we miss and you don’t get numb, we’ll have to try again.

If you’re new to the area and are looking for a dentist, we welcome you to call our Collierville dental office to schedule a visit. At your first appointment, let us know if getting numb has been a struggle in the past and we’ll work with you find a solution that helps make getting the care you need comfortable.

Accepting new patients from Collierville, Germantown and the surrounding areas. 

female

Posted & filed under General Dentistry.

More women are becoming dentists – up 44 percent since 2008. Until several decades ago, dentistry was traditionally reserved for men. Not true today. Female dentists comprise over 22 percent of all practices. Besides adding gender diversity, there appear to be distinct advantages that women dentists have over their male counterparts. Some studies suggest women make better and more responsive dentists. We are not trying to get into a debate on which gender is better here. We don’t believe in that kind of thinking. We are just reporting some interesting study and survey factoids we found.

8 Reasons Why:

A study of 393 male and 73 female dentists conducted by the Dental PBRN Collaborative Group discovered:

  • Women dentists may be much better at prevention. PBRN researchers found females had a much greater preference to offering cavity prevention regimens to their patients. They would offer these recommendations much earlier than their male counterparts too. Many of these solutions were at-home fluoride and other treatments for both pediatric and adult patients. This individualized care empowered patients and saved them money in the long run.
  • Other researchers found women dentists take a more conservative approach, which was good for the patient with more positive and less expensive outcomes. It appears unnecessary or aggressive care is not the norm among women. This is something Dr. Kathryn A. Sneed and her team of female associates at Sneed Dental Arts stands by. She believes that conservative treatment is always the rule. She listens to her patients and only recommends what is best for each individual.
  • Studies show women dentists were more likely to recommend at-home fluoride treatments for pediatric patients than their male counterparts who often preferred in-office treatments.
  • Researchers also found women have smaller hands which is more comfortable for the patient. When it comes to doing extractions or major work in your mouth, a smaller hand is actually better and less invasive.
  • Women dentists were more conservative in their approach to restorative dentistry. Researchers say they were more likely to opt for less radical solutions than a male dentist. Again, this saves patient money in the long run.
  • Washingtonian.com reports that women dentists are often better at listening to their patients. That means females are more attentive. That is definitely a win-win for the dental patient.
  • Women are better at gentle dentistry. If you are leary of the dentist because of a bad experience, choosing a female dentist may be just what you need to put you at ease.
  • Some people say women are more nuturing. Perhaps, it is just Mother Nature here, but women can be better at putting themselves in other people’s shoes with more empathic thinking. This makes for a better bedside manner in the medical profession. Having a dentist with a good bedside manner lowers the stress for an anxious dental patient.

dental emergency

Posted & filed under Family Health, Prevention.

A dental emergency can happen any time, any where and can be anything from a chipped tooth, a toothache, a lost filling, or a tooth that’s totally knocked out. While nobody ever wants to experience a dental emergency, the truth is, they happen. When they do, you should be aware of some ways to handle some of the most common dental emergencies. That’s where our dental office in Collierville comes in.

There’s Not a One-Size-Fits-All Solution to All Dental Emergencies

Not every dental emergency is handled the same way, but there is one thing that stays true to every type of dental problem — see your dentist in Collierville as soon as you can. In the meantime, there are a variety of things you can do to help. Let’s examine several common dental emergencies and tips to try in case they happen to you.  

Dental Emergency: Broken/Chipped Tooth

How to Help It: Rinse your mouth and any tooth pieces with warm water to clean them. Save any pieces you happen to find. If you’re bleeding, apply pressure to the area with a piece of gauze until the bleeding stops. Remember, a mouth can bleed a lot, so be patient. To reduce swelling and minimize pain, apply a cold compress to the outside of the mouth.

Dental Emergency: Lost Filling

How to Help It: This emergency will require a dental visit rather quickly to fill in the hole that’s now in your tooth. If you can’t get to the dentist right away, you can buy dental cement at many drugstores that can fill in the space where the dental restoration used to be. A piece of sugarless gum can also help. Just make sure it’s sugar free — anything with sugar in it will hurt!

Dental Problem: Knocked Out Tooth

How to Help It: Promptness is key with this dental emergency as the best chance at saving a knocked out tooth is to get it back into the socket within the hour. The first step is to find the tooth. When and if you do, do NOT touch the roots! Handle your tooth only by the crown, or the white part that usually shows in your mouth. You can gently rinse it with warm water if it’s dirty, but try to put the tooth back in its socket as soon as you can. If that’s not an option, put the tooth in some milk or keep it under your tongue and get to the dentist ASAP.

Prevention is Key

While these tips can help provide some relief, the best way to avoid a dental problem in the first place is to maintain regular visits and dental cleanings at least twice a year. If it’s been awhile since you’ve been to a dentist, we welcome you to call our Collierville dental office to schedule an appointment. We will work with you to make sure there aren’t any potential dangers just waiting pop up when you least expect it.

 

Accepting patients from Collierville, Cordova, Germantown and beyond. 

become a dentist

Posted & filed under General Dentistry.

Considering a career as a dentist? We may be biased, but the team at our dental office in Collierville thinks it’s the best job you could have. Dentists, dental assistants, and dental hygienists are an important part of a total healthcare team, and are crucial to keeping patients healthy. Not only that, but they can also be responsible for transforming smiles and giving people a confidence boost which affects their lives as a whole. If you’d like to experience the rewarding feeling we get each and every day, dentistry may be right for you.

Will You Enjoy Being a Dentist?

Before we go into the specific steps on how someone becomes a dentist, it’s important to discuss the qualities and interests one should possess in order to be happy in this field. First, an interest and excellence in the sciences is recommended. Dentistry and the courses required to become a dentist are highly science focused, so it’s crucial to have an organic attraction to science. Second, dentistry is also incredibly artistic, so you should be good with your hands and be incredibly dexterous. Lastly, you should have a desire to help people — both in terms of health and beauty.

The Steps to Become a Dentist

After you’re able to identify that the basic, underlying characteristics of being a dentist interest you, you can start to outline the steps you need to take to become a dentist.

  • Complete Your Bachelor’s Degree. While you can get your Bachelor’s in anything, you’ll be one step ahead if you focus on biology, chemistry, physiology, and other sciences.
  • Score Well on the DAT. Following undergraduate school, you’ll need to take the Dental Acceptance Test and score well to be considered for dental school.
  • Go to Dental School. Typically, dental school lasts four years and includes a combination of classes and clinical work.
  • Take Your Board Exams. Before you can practice dentistry, you’ll need to pass the National Board Dental Examinations as well as any other requirements necessary for the state you wish to practice in.

“Will I Be Able to Find a Job?”

While the job hunt is always a daunting task no matter which industry you decide to enter, there’s some good news about the rising need of dentists from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Job availability is projected to grow at 18% through 2024, more than double the average growth for other careers.

If you’re seriously considering a career as a dentist, our Collierville dental office recommends that you perform research on what dentists do and what your job environment could look like to see if it’s something that will make you happy.

Welcoming patients from Collierville, Cordova, Germantown, and beyond. 

smile you love

Posted & filed under Cosmetic Dentistry.

Not everyone is lucky enough to have naturally straight, white, healthy teeth. Often times things like aging, genetics, or even accidents can affect their appearance and make people want to hide their smiles from the world. But fortunately, nobody needs to live with a smile they don’t really like. With cosmetic dentistry from our dental office in Collierville, we can transform any smile into one you love and are proud to show off.

What is Cosmetic Dentistry?

Cosmetic dentistry is the term used to explain a number of dental treatments that are effective at not only enhancing the appearance of a smile, but can also aid in maintaining proper function. Cosmetic dentistry treatments can fix a number of common dental concerns including:

  • Crooked teeth
  • Discolored teeth
  • Chipped or cracked teeth
  • A gummy smile

Which Cosmetic Dentistry Treatment is Right for You?

While there numerous forms of cosmetic dentistry available, the same solution isn’t appropriate for everyone, even if their concerns are similar. Sometimes the recommended treatment for one person’s crooked teeth is different from what’s right for their friend, for example. Let’s look at some common cosmetic dentistry treatments and explore the variety of problems they can solve.

Tooth Whitening – Just like the name suggests, professional tooth whitening transforms a dull or discolored smile into a bright, white, dazzling grin.   

Composite Bonding – Perfect for several dental problems, composite bonding can help fix chips, cracks, crookedness, and discoloration.

Porcelain Veneers – Similarly to bonding, veneers cover the tooth surface and correct staining, chips, and breaks, and straighten smiles. They’re also successful at changing the shape of individual teeth.

Smile Makeovers – A complete smile transformation comes in the form of a smile makeover. Smile makeovers allow your dentist in Collierville to combine several cosmetic dentistry treatments to achieve your dream smile.

If you’re ready to fall in love with your smile, give our Collierville dental office a call to schedule an appointment today. We’ll talk about the aspects of your teeth that you aren’t crazy about and discuss the best treatment options to give you a smile you’re proud of.

Accepting patients from Collierville, Germantown, and surrounding areas