healthy-smile

A healthy smile is a great asset! Our teeth play such important roles in our lives – they help us chew our food, talk and speak to others, and give our face its beautiful shape. Not only that, but our smiles give us confidence and influence our careers, social lives, relationships, and more. How do you know if your smile is healthy? Let’s take a look at the many signs, visible and invisible, of a healthy smile. 

Learn more about Eating Habits for a Healthy Smile   

Signs of a Healthy Smile

There are both visible and invisible signs that you have a healthy smile, let’s discuss.

Visible Signs of a Healthy Smile: 

  • Smooth, pink tongue: Sometimes we can have a white film on the tongue from decayed particles from food. Proper tongue cleaning can often get rid of this film. Canker sores or red patches on the tongue could indicate health problems. 
  • Firm, pink gums: White, red, or dark pink gums could indicate inflammation or gum disease.
  • Gums that aren’t recessed too low: 3 millimeters is the max amount gums should recede from the teeth. 
  • White teeth, free of excess stains: Teeth that are very yellow could indicate tooth decay.
  • An aligned bite: When the top and bottom jaw align, wear and tear is distributed evenly when chewing and biting. 

Invisible Signs of a Healthy Smile: 

  • Fresh breath: Although it’s impossible to have fresh breath all the time (especially after we wake up in the morning) but, the constant presence of bad breath, even after brushing and flossing, is often an indicator of tooth decay. 
  • Free of pain or discomfort: Pain let’s us know that something isn’t quite right. If we’re experiencing any toothaches or discomforts in the mouth, something needs to be checked out. 
  • No sensitivity: Tooth disease often manifests with tooth sensitivity. If your teeth are pain-free, then chances are they’re healthy and don’t have cavities. 
  • A moist mouth: Although the word “moist” may be uncomfortable for a lot of us to say, the truth is, a moist mouth is a healthy mouth. A mouth that is dry cannot wash away bacteria with saliva – which is our natural mouthwash. 

Related Articles:

10 Dental Care Tips for a Healthy Smile

With all the health advice available online now, it’s hard to know what’s actually important to your oral health and what’s not. Dr. Caye and his team at Premier Dental in Lee’s Summit, MO want to make you aware of 10 dental care tips so that you can have a healthier smile.

1. Brush Your Teeth Every Day

You’ve been told this since your very first dental visit as a child: brush your teeth twice a day. Brushing removes leftover food particles that can bond with saliva to form plaque. These particles feed the bacteria that naturally live in our mouths. Their digestive acids can eat through our tooth enamel, causing tooth decay.

2. Flossing is as Important as Brushing

Flossing is important because it removes plaque from places that your toothbrush alone can’t reach. If plaque is allowed to remain in these hard-to-reach areas, you could find yourself dealing with tooth decay or even gum disease, which research has linked to increased risk of cardiovascular problems and Alzheimer’s.

3. Stay Hydrated

Again: Keeping your body hydrated helps your mouth produce enough saliva to keep your mouth and teeth clean. Saliva naturally washes out the mouth, removing oral bacteria and the food particles that they feed upon.

4. Limit Sugar Intake, Including Sugary Drinks

The bacteria in our mouths thrive on sugar which makes sugary drinks a major contributor to tooth decay. Reducing the amount of sugar in your diet combined with regular brushing and flossing can help keep the bacteria under control.

5. Visit Your Dentist Twice a Year

Regular dental examinations are necessary to preserving your oral health. Your dentist is trained to recognize early signs of tooth decay and gum disease before they turn severe. This can help you avoid complicated and expensive dental procedures. Most exams include X-rays to inspect your teeth for decay and root stability. Learn more about Comprehensive Dentistry.

6. Maintain a Healthy Diet

A healthy diet is important not just for overall health, but is important for your teeth in ways you might not expect. In addition to good nutrition provided by healthy foods that help your bones and teeth grow and stay healthy, a lot of fruits and veggies are crunchy and chewy, which promotes the production of saliva. Foods that require a lot of chewing are good for the teeth because more saliva means the mouth is naturally washed out more often.

7. Give Up Smoking

Smoking damages healthy gums, causing them to recede and develop large pockets around the teeth. This makes teeth appear longer and creates dark spaces between them. Smoking also makes it very difficult to reverse gum disease. Don’t forget, smoking causes staining to your teeth. The stain from smoke is sometimes a superficial stain that can be polished off, but it can also soak deep into the enamel.

8. Remember Your Tongue:

When you brush your teeth, don’t forget to brush over your tongue at the back of your tongue to remove foul-smelling bacterial waste that causes bad breath.

9. Don’t Chew on Hard Items

This may seem like common sense but… try not to bite down on hard candies or non-food items like pen caps or fingernails. These items aren’t designed to be chewed and can damage teeth.

10. Take Care of Your Toothbrush

Your toothbrush doesn’t need any special cleaning, but make sure it dries after each use and there is no leftover toothpaste. Store it upright and exposed to air and your toothbrush will be good to go!

 

Keeping a Healthy Smile

When you think of a healthy smile, you envision a mouth full of bright, white teeth free of cavities and gum disease. All the teeth are straight and smooth. You want teeth like that. If you did, you would know that your mouth has optimum health. As you know, a healthy smile often goes beyond just what we can see. That’s why it’s always important to see your dentist every 6 months for a dental cleaning and exam, so your dentist can check for all the signs of a healthy mouth.

Dr. Stephan Caye and his friendly, experienced team at Premier Dental offer affordable family dentistry and invisible braces in the Lee’s Summit, MO area. Our office is conveniently located off of Highway 50 and SE Blue Parkway. We offer appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At Premier Dental, we provide most dental health services, from family and general dentistry to specialty procedures, including tooth replacement options, such as dental implants and dentures, endodontic or root canal treatment, teeth whitening, cosmetic dentistryemergency dental care and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Please call us at (816) 600-6330 to schedule an appointment.

 

tooth-decay-treatments

Dental cavities, also known as tooth decay, breaks down your tooth’s enamel (the hard outer layer of a tooth) and can vary in severity and stages of decay. Let’s take a look at the various tooth decay treatments and how we can help at Premier Dental.

Here are the 5 Stages of Tooth Decay and What they Look Like, according to Healthline.  

Tooth Decay Treatments

Early Stage Treatment

  • Fluoride Treatment: For the beginning stages of tooth decay, fluoride is used to help strengthen the damaged enamel. Fluoride can actually be used in various ways to help stop the decay or even help repair some of the damaged enamel, and can be applied directly to the tooth and only take a few minutes. 

More Options for Tooth Decay Treatments 

  • Fillings: When you experience a cavity, oftentimes fillings are used as a treatment option. Your dentist will drill to remove any tooth decay and shape the cavity to fit the new filling. Then, the area will be filled with dental amalgam or composite. 
  • Crowns: Larger cavities can require a crown instead of just a filling. The outer portion of the tooth will be removed, along with any areas of decay, and a crown will be made in the same shape/size/color of your natural tooth as a replacement to put over the tooth. Learn More: Why do I need a Dental Crown?
  • Root Canals: When the decay has entered the inner area of the tooth (the pulp), a root canal can be performed. You will receive a numbing agent to numb the area, and then the infected pulp will be removed and the area will be cleaned out. Learn More: Root Canal Therapy: Everything You Need to Know!
  • Tooth Extraction: If tooth decay is severe and is causing major damage, a tooth extraction may be recommended. The area will be numbed and the tooth will be extracted. 

Related Articles:

Is Tooth Decay Reversible? 

Tooth decay can be reversible if caught in the very early stages, which is why it’s important to see your dentist often for a dental exam and cleaning. If you’re experiencing any tooth pain or aches, come see us immediately to determine if decay is the cause. Learn More about Emergency Dental Care.

Once a tooth loses minerals and experiences a cavity, the damage is irreversible, but treatable so that the decay doesn’t spread to any other areas of the mouth. Help reverse early stages of tooth by cutting down on sugary foods and practicing good, daily oral hygiene!  

If Left Untreated

If decay is left untreated, tooth decay can lead to a multitude of more serious oral health complications, such as:

  • Infection
  • Tooth pain
  • Loss of teeth
  • Abscesses
  • Gum Disease

Learn More: What is Tooth Decay?  

Related Article: Avoid Gum Disease

 

Premier Dental in Lee’s Summit Prevents Tooth Decay

At Premier Dental, we work hard to customize each patient’s dental experience. By doing that we can actually make you want to visit the dentist – which will help prevent tooth decay! Our laid-back atmosphere, gentle touch of Dr. Stephan D. Caye, and relaxing amenities will have you looking forward to your next visit. Learn more about the Comprehensive Dentistry that is offered at Premier Dental in Lee’s Summit.

Dr. Stephan Caye and his friendly, experienced team at Premier Dental offer affordable family dentistry and gentle dental care in the Lee’s Summit, MO area. Our office is conveniently located off of Highway 50 and SE Blue Parkway. We offer appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At Premier Dental, we provide most dental health services, from family and general dentistry to specialty procedures, including dental implants, dentures, endodontic or root canal treatment, teeth whitening, cosmetic dentistry, emergency dental care and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Please call us at (816) 600-6330 to schedule an appointment.

dental-travel-tips

Dental Travel Tips 

Keeping up with your oral health while vacationing or traveling seems simple but with changes in time zone and a busy schedule full of fun activities, it may become difficult to remember to keep your mouth healthy. Here are some of our favorite dental travel tips during your next adventure!  

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same-day-crowns

At Premier Dental, we often talk with our patients about dental crowns and why they’re needed. Sometimes dental crowns can be confusing, or a completely new idea to some, and so we like to take the time and explain why dental crowns are needed and so helpful in the dental industry. Dental crowns do a wonderful job at protecting your teeth and enhancing the look and health of your smile. Did you know that same-day crowns are also available? Let’s clear up some crown confusions!

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Stephen-Caye-DDS-Premier-DentalAt Premier Dental, our personalized touch is revolutionizing the dental experience and will have you forgetting why you were ever “fearful” of the dentist. Our laid-back atmosphere, gentle touch of Dr. Stephan D. Caye, and relaxing amenities will have you looking forward to your next visit.

Unique Approach to Every Single Patient

Dr. Caye doesn’t use a one-size-fits-all approach with his patients, instead he takes the time to work with each and every patient, one-on-one. Each patient needs a different and unique approach to their oral health. Almost all dental procedures can be done in-house at our location, which makes your appointments run smooth, with your best treatment options (made specially for you and your oral health) in mind.

Comprehensive Dentistry

We like offering comprehensive dentistry to our patients. What does that mean? At Premier Dental, you can receive preventive, cosmetic, and restorative treatments all in one location.

  • Preventive Dentistry Treatments often include dental cleanings twice a year and the main goal is to prevent any oral health issues from happening. It’s so important to see your dentist twice a year so they can assess your oral health and provide you with a professional cleaning.
  • Cosmetic Dentistry Treatments are all about enhancing the look and feel of your smile. These treatments are great confidence boosters, and often include our ClearCorrect braces, veneers, etc.
  • Restorative Dentistry Treatments often happen with your oral health needs restored or corrected. Maybe you chipped your tooth, lost a tooth, etc. and may require surgery. Dental crowns, root canals, and dentures are restorative treatments.

We use our advanced technology to provide our patients with state-of-the-art, high-quality care and our friendly staff is committed to providing premium dental care in a comfortable and convenient setting. We offer comprehensive dentistry at Premier Dental. No matter what you’re looking for, we can provide you with various options, ranging from cosmetic, restorative, and preventive. Let’s dive a little deeper…

Cosmetic Services

Cosmetic services are all about achieving that mega-watt, dream smile! Enhancing your smile is what we love to do, and offer braces, retainers, veneers, bonding, re-contouring, and teeth whitening services for you to boost your confidence and your oral health. If you feel dissatisfied with your smile, cosmetic dentistry can help!

According to Web MD, “If you’re not satisfied with your smile, modern cosmetic dentistry can help. This method of professional oral care focuses on improving the appearance of your mouth, teeth, gums, and overall smile. Although it’s not an essential procedure, cosmetic treatment can restore confidence in your smile.”

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dental-implant-candidate

Are you a dental implant candidate to replace your missing tooth? Let’s find out…

If you’re missing one or more teeth, dental implants may be a wonderful option for regaining your beautiful smile! Dental implants are a great way to replace missing teeth and can change the look and health of your smile.

Having missing teeth can affect the way we chew, talk, etc., so it’s imperative to take a look at your replacement teeth options and see what your dentist recommends, and what you qualify for. Dental implants are one of these options, so let’s take a closer look at the requirements for dental implants. Most people make a great dental implant candidate and enjoy the full function and restoration of their smile!

Dental implants explained by the Mayo Clinic HERE.

If you have a missing tooth or multiple missing teeth, learn more about Dentures vs Dental Implants: What You Need to Know

5 Signs for Dental Implant Candidate

  1. Good oral hygiene
  2. Teeth and gums in good health
  3. Good bone density for support
  4. You are a non-smoker, or can stop smoking completely
  5. Patience for the process

We will look at why the teeth are missing, your oral health routine, your jawbone strength, and your patience levels before deciding if dental implants are right for you.

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dental-cleaning

 

Spring is officially here! With the warmer weather, rain showers, and green grasses on the horizon, spring feels like a time of change and prosperity. You may also have a to-do list for the springtime. The term “spring cleaning” is a real thing, and many of us are anxious to switch out our closets and do some long-awaited home improvements. With all this talk of cleaning, it’s the perfect time to come see us at Premier Dental for a dental spring cleaning. Your teeth and gums will thank you!

What happens during a dental cleaning? Lean More HERE.

Dental Exams

Think of your dental exam as a deep cleaning – just like you do to your home. You inspect the area, decide what needs cleaned and what looks good, and get to work! Your dentist will do the same for your mouth. During a dental cleaning and exam we will:

  • Examine your teeth, gums, and mouth for any potential concerns
  • Possibly take x-rays, if needed
  • Polish your teeth with a dental-grade toothbrush and specialty toothpaste
  • Remove any plaque and tartar build-up
  • Floss
  • Apply a fluoride treatment, if needed

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porcelain-veneers

A new year brings so much potential, the chances for new opportunities and growth. For many of us, we want to work on ourselves and become the best versions of ourselves in the new year. We focus on wellbeing, happiness, and mental health, but is a great smile also on your 2021 wish list? It’s amazing what a smile can do to your confidence, and porcelain veneers may be a great option for making 2021 the year you obtain your dream smile with a smile makeover!

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dental-crown

 

Dental crowns are common, often painless, help restore a smile and can greatly extend the life of a tooth. According to the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, 99.7% of surveyed adults said that a healthy smile is socially important to them. Dental crowns can help keep your smile healthy and bright, but how do you know when you need a dental crown?

Learn more about Dental Crowns HERE from WebMD.

Most Common Reasons for a Dental Crown

Dental crowns are basically tooth-shaped and colored caps that cover the tooth and restore the health and natural look of the tooth. A dental crown will correct the look of a tooth in a realistic way, if a tooth is small or discolored. Dental crowns are needed in certain situations – let’s look at some of the most popular reasons:

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maskmouth

 

Oral care is more essential than ever. While wearing face coverings that are to protect us from diseases and are recommended by the CDC, dentists are seeing a rise in gum disease from “mask mouth.”

Mask Mouth refers to a range of symptoms associated with wearing a face mask. The main symptom being bad breath, or halitosis. While bad breath may seem annoying and temporary, it’s a sign that something isn’t quite right. It’s important to pay attention to any warning signs or symptoms of mask mouth and take action to prevent it!

Let’s look into some helpful, preventative measures for mask mouth.

The truth behind mask mouth:

Symptoms of Mask Mouth

Bad Breath: 

One of the most common signs of mask mouth is bad breath. If you’re breathing through your mouth while wearing a mask, you’re drying out your mouth and causing bad breath. This can also cause dry lips.

Dry Mouth:

Saliva is such a great tool that our body already produces to help keep the germs out of our mouth, so when our mouth becomes dry and we lose saliva production, we build bad-breath bacteria in the mouth.

Less saliva in the mouth also means we are more prone to tooth decay and infections.  When we are wearing our mask often and experience dry mouth, we’re advancing or progressing tooth decay.

Bad breath is often a sign that something isn’t quite right. When we wear our masks, we may breathe through our mouths more and dry out our mouths. While this may not seem like an issue, when we dry out our mouths, we leave them more susceptible to bacteria growth. When bacteria grow in our mouth, we can experience things like cavities and gum disease. Saliva is a huge multitasker in our mouths and it constantly keeps bacteria at bay. When we lose saliva production, we lose our biggest bacteria fighter.

The new oral hygiene issue — caused by, you guessed it, wearing a mask all the time to prevent the spread of the coronavirus — is leading to all kinds of dental disasters like decaying teeth, receding gum lines and seriously sour breath. Learn More about the stinky side effects of Mask Mouth HERE.

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