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Easing anxieties at your family dentistry office

Easing Dental Anxiety at DaVinci Family DentistryIf you experience anxiety at the thought of even going to the dentist, you’re not alone. At our Southlake family dentistry office, we’ll take the time to find out the cause of your dental anxiety, and we’ll work with you each step of the way to figure out what helps you feel calm and relaxed during your treatment. In some cases, a hand signal for when you want us to immediately stop may do the trick; in other situations, simply having us listen may be all it takes.

As a result of our extensive cosmetic, implant and family dentistry experience, we know that a range of causes can trigger anxiety, including:

  • fear of pain;
  • feelings of helplessness/loss of control;
  • lack of personal space; and
  • concern about injections and/or anesthesia.

At DaVinci Dentistry in Southlake, the comfort of our patients is our top priority. We want to do whatever it takes to ensure you get the dental care you need while being sensitive to your anxieties.

That’s why you’ll notice we talk with you and listen, help provide distraction when possible, and do everything we can to ensure you feel secure, whether that means offering a blanket or headphones.

Contact us today to set up your appointment, and don’t hesitate to let us know about your anxieties or concerns. We’ll be ready. Serving Southlake, Keller, North Richland Hills, Grapevine and Colleyville: 817-251-9333.

 

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Dental bonding: Caring for bonded teeth

When you’ve undergone dental bonding, the first person you’ll want to talk to about routine maintenance and care is your cosmetic dentist. Southlake-based DaVinci Dentistry offers dental bonding as part of its services, and our team can talk to you about things to avoid and things you’ll want to do to keep your dental bonding in place for as long as possible.

In general, care for bonded teeth just as you would your natural, nontreated teeth, which means:

  • brush at least twice a day;
  • floss at least once a day;
  • rinse with an antiseptic or mouthwash on a regular basis; and
  • keep up with your dental appointments and cleanings.

Because the composite resin and other dental bonding materials are applied to the surface of the tooth, bonding can be prone to chipping.

This means being mindful of the following potentially damaging behaviors:

  • using your teeth to open objects;
  • chewing ice;
  • biting fingernails; and
  • chewing on pens, pencils and other hard objects.

Another important step in caring for bonded teeth is to pay attention — when biting down feels a bit “off” or you notice rough or jagged edges on your tooth, don’t hesitate to call your cosmetic dentist Southlake team. We’ll examine your teeth to determine the best course of action. Since bonding isn’t a permanent cosmetic option — on average, it can last upwards of 7 years — we may need to perform a new dental bonding treatment. Contact us today with your questions about dental bonding, and we can discuss all considerations with this cosmetic dentistry option: 817-251-9333.

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How Obstructive Sleep Apnea Affects You on the Job

Obstructive sleep apnea can impact your job performance.The effects of lack of sleep among U.S. workers made headlines this week, when a study by nonprofit Rand Corp. quantified the economic impact of this concerning trend. A staggering $411 billion and 1.2 million working days were lost due to lack of sleep. In a number of those cases, it is quite feasible that individuals did allot the prescribed 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night, but that another phenomenon robbed them of their rest: obstructive sleep apnea.

This condition, also known as OSA, occurs when an individual is sleeping, so the person affected may never know it is occurring. It’s characterized by the relaxation of muscles in the throat during sleep, and when the tongue falls back, further blocking the airway, oxygen intake is decreased.

Some of the ways obstructive sleep apnea can affect you at work include:

  • Reaction time – This can have more dramatic consequences for specific jobs, especially ones that require lifting or operating heavy machinery. All workers are affected, though, as decreased reaction time can increase the chance of a car accident during your commute.
  • Decisions – When you’re tired, it’s harder to work through tough judgment calls.
  • Concentration – The ability to focus, and often for sustained periods of time, may be necessary for many jobs. If you’re repeatedly having trouble keeping your attention on a task, it could point to a lack of sleep.

The good news is that patients today have multiple options for OSA treatment. Southlake’s DaVinci Dentistry is just one team that can deal with this sleep-disordered breathing problem through the use of a custom-fitted oral appliance. As patients learn what it is to feel refreshed each day, they’ll likely find that their performance at work improves, too. If you have questions about diagnosing OSA and the solutions we provide, contact us at 817-251-9333.

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Cosmetic dentistry: Giving yourself a refreshed smile for the holidays

Holiday Smile Makeovers with Cosmetic DentistryWe all want to look our best during the holiday season, with all the gatherings, parties and reunions this time of year typically holds. When a refreshed and brighter smile ranks at the top of that list, getting the results you want can mean something different from one patient to the next. Luckily, cosmetic dentistry solutions take many forms, from single-appointment, in-office whitening procedures to multi-step procedures associated with veneers, and much more.

At DaVinci Dentistry in Southlake, cosmetic dentistry options will be explained to you during your first appointment, or consultation. It’s then we’ll assess your dental concerns. Perhaps you’re self-conscious of teeth that have been discolored, possibly from previous medications, or even root canals. In other situations, you may want to correct teeth that are worn, chipped, broken, misaligned or even irregularly shaped.

Whatever your focus, we’ll share some cosmetic dentistry solutions available in our office, including:

  • whitening;
  • composite white fillings and bonding;
  • veneers; and
  • Invisalign (helps with misaligned teeth).

Another treatment used to replace missing teeth that also has the potential to improve appearance is dental implant placement, although this therapy has numerous other benefits in addition to cosmetic improvements. On the other end of the spectrum, some patients may find all they need is a cleaning to brighten their smile.

Whatever route you may opt to go this holiday season, at DaVinci Dentistry we’ll take the time to explore all of your options, and, since many cosmetic dentistry options require multiple appointments, we’ll give you an estimate on just how long your procedure will take from start to finish. Contact us at 817-251-9333 or request an appointment online. Serving Southlake, Keller, Grapevine, Colleyville, North Richland Hills and Tarrant County.

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What to look for in a dentist

dentist in Southlake - icons for dental care

Whether you’re new to the area, or recently changed insurance carriers, when you’re looking for a new dentist, our Southlake DaVinci Dentistry team has some pointers on how to narrow your search. The ultimate goal is to find a caring, capable dentist who can care for your oral health needs, both emergency and routine.

It helps to consider:

  • Qualifications — You can learn more about the extent of your dentist’s training through your insurance carrier, local dental society and state licensing board. In Texas, the state board website lists all licensed dentists, including information like whether that individual has ever been subject to disciplinary action.
  • Cost — For starters, you’ll want to find out if the specific dentist you’re interested in takes your insurance. If so, other factors to consider are specialist referral capabilities and out-of-pocket costs for certain procedures. When costs are incurred, does the office offer patients the option to use credit cards and payment plans in addition to cash and checks?
  • Comfort and care — The first time you visit the office, think about the office environment. Do the staff and dentists make you feel at home? One of the most important members of any dental team is also you, the patient. You want to assess if you feel comfortable with the dentist or dentists there, and whether you feel you can take the time to ask important questions about your care.
  • Convenience — Location and office hours are important. Not only will it make it easier to be on time for your appointments, when dental emergencies come up, you’ll be able to get the care you need.

At DaVinci Dentistry in Southlake, we know that you have a choice when it comes to which dentist you’ll go to for your care. We look forward to meeting you and answering your questions: 817-251-9333.

 

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How long does TMD last?

TMD pain treatment SouthlakeTemporomandibular disorders, often called TMDs, affect the temporomandibular, or jaw, joint. As many as 30 percent of Americans may have symptoms of temporomandibular disorder at any given time. Since these problems affect the muscles in your face that are needed for chewing, it can be hard to avoid the discomfort associated with it, which is why it’s very natural for patients to ask us just how long they can expect their TMD flare-up to last.

While no two cases are exactly the same, the length of time that you experience TMD symptoms — pain, tenderness and soreness around the jaw, neck and ears, headaches, clicking and popping sounds when opening the jaw, and more — can vary from just a few weeks, such as with jaw injuries, to months or years, like when arthritis and bruxism (tooth grinding) are involved.

When you’re dealing with problems like jaw clenching and tooth grinding, how well you respond to treatment, usually in the form of a night guard or occlusal splint, can also determine how long you experience uncomfortable symptoms.

At DaVinci Dentistry in Southlake, we know you want to reduce your pain and get back to life as soon as possible. The first step is to talk to us about what you’re experiencing. You can set up your appointment by giving us a call or requesting an appointment through our online form. During your appointment, we’ll conduct an exam and talk with you about what you’re experiencing. Our goal isn’t just to improve your quality of life through reducing TMD pain, but also to help you feel at ease every time you step foot in our office. We look forward to meeting you soon: 817-251-9333.

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Dental bonding: When this procedure may be right for you

Dental bonding by cosmetic dentist in SouthlakeWhether you’re looking for a permanent solution for the way your teeth look and function, or even just a transitional option before undertaking a more involved or expensive treatment, dental bonding may be right for you.

Dental bonding is most commonly used to correct:

  • chipped or broken teeth;
  • discolored teeth;
  • noticeable spaces between teeth; and
  • teeth that may be disproportionately large or small.

Bonding may also be used over amalgam or metallic fillings, and in some cases, it can be used to replace fillings entirely.

This dental procedure has some distinct advantages in that it’s less expensive than other options, such as veneers, and it can usually be completed in just one office visit, allowing you to move on with life immediately. Even so, dental bonding material can break and stain, so brushing your teeth regularly with a whitening toothpaste, protecting them with a mouthguard while playing contact sports and avoiding habits like opening objects with your mouth will help prolong the life of your dental bonding work.

At DaVinci Dentistry in Southlake, we offer dental bonding in addition to a wide variety of prosthodontic and cosmetic dentistry options. If you have questions about whether bonding is for you, come see us, and we’ll explore your options together. Serving Southlake, Grapevine, Keller, North Richland Hills and much of Tarrant County, the DaVinci team looks forward to meeting you soon: 817-251-9333.

 

 

 

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3 common questions about dental implants — answered

Dental implants questions When you’re considering whether dental implants may be an option for you, it’s likely to start out with more questions than answers. At DaVinci Dentistry in Southlake, it’s our goal to answer any and all questions you may have about dental implants. We don’t just want your mind to be at ease; we want you to be certain and confident about your decision.

Here’s a closer look at some of the most common questions we receive from patients who are interested in dental implants, as well as some answers that may help as you explore your options.

Q: How much do dental implants cost?

A: This number can vary depending on the type and number of dental implants you receive, as well as any additional procedures that may be required, such as tissue grafting or bone augmentation. Once we conduct our initial exam and get a feel for the teeth that you need to replace, as well as the condition of your jawbone and mouth, we’ll provide you with a detailed treatment plan complete with estimated cost and the number of office visits that will be required. While not all insurance plans cover dental implants, some may offer funds to be used toward your implants that would otherwise have gone to a bridge or dentures.

Q: What are the risks associated with dental implants?

A: While dental implants have shown to be safe, predictable and effective, they’re not completely without risk.

Some complications include:

  • infection;
  • sinus problems;
  • nerve damage (numbness and tingling);
  • damage to other teeth; and
  • implant failure.

Q: Who should perform my dental implant surgery and placement?

A: Oral health professionals from several dental specialties can place your dental implant, as well as general dentists with training, skills and experience in this treatment method. At DaVinci Dentistry in Southlake, both Dr. Raed Ajlouni and Dr. Khal Ajlouni, a prosthodontist, are experienced with placing dental implants; so much so that they train future and current dentists on the entire process.

Contact our office at 817-251-9333 with your dental implant questions, and we look forward to meeting you soon at your next appointment!

 

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What conditions does full-mouth restoration treat?

full-mouth restoration in Southlake, TexasFull-mouth restoration, the process of rebuilding and reconstructing every tooth in the mouth, doesn’t just benefit the appearance of your smile. At its core, this treatment is intended to improve a patient’s overall health and quality of life by addressing bite imbalances, chewing limitations and pain. While no two cases are exactly the same, there are some common factors that may require full-mouth reconstruction.

These include:

  • accidents and trauma (teeth may have been injured, fractured or even lost);
  • acid erosion (long-term exposure to acid reflux or acidic foods can substantially wear down teeth);
  • neglect and effects of gum disease (in its advanced stages, gum disease can lead to bone loss, and with it, the teeth themselves); and
  • the natural aging process.

Because full-mouth restoration involves multiple forms of dental treatment, ranging from dental implants and corrective jaw surgery to root planing and bone grafts — among other procedures — having a professional with advanced training and treatment planning abilities can make a huge difference in the outcome of your case. At DaVinci Dentistry in Southlake, Texas, Dr. Khal Ajlouni is a prosthodontist, and Dr. Raed Ajlouni is a general dentist with extensive experience in cosmetic dentistry. Together they will conduct an exam, take photographs and impressions and determine what steps are necessary to complete your full-mouth restoration. The first step is making an appointment. Call us at 817-251-9333 or connect with us on Facebook to learn more about what it’s like to be a patient at our office.

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2 Ways Sleep Apnea is Harmful

Sleep apnea can cause car accidents, as this photo of a man sleeping in a car illustrates. More than 18 million Americans have sleep apnea, according to the National Sleep Foundation. And for those individuals suffering from the condition, in which the muscles in your throat relax during sleep and the tongue falls back and blocks the airway, the resulting lack of oxygen has a trickle-down effect, in more ways than one.

Here are just a couple ways in which sleep apnea is harmful to you:

  1. Drowsiness – While the disturbances in breathing cause by sleep apnea may be imperceptible to you — despite the fact that bedmates often deal with snoring — the condition actually causes you to wake briefly. This pause in breathing followed by a split-second waking can occur up to 30 times an hour, cutting into crucial sleep cycles. Drowsiness in and of itself isn’t necessarily dangerous, but get behind the wheel of a car, or try to operate heavy machinery on the job, and accidents can and do occur.
  2. Heart disease – When sleep apnea disrupts the body’s oxygen levels, the brain can have a hard time regulating the flow of blood through the arteries, which can contribute to heart attack risk. In fact, a 2013 Mayo Clinic study revealed that people with obstructive sleep apnea are at a greater risk for sudden cardiac death during sleep. This risk doubles when the sleep apnea patient experiences more than 20 breathing disruptions per hour, coupled with drastic falls in oxygen saturation levels, the amount of air flowing through your lungs.

As awareness about obstructive sleep apnea continues to grow, and with it, the knowledge base on ways to treat it, patients have more options at their disposal. Since sleep apnea involves the mouth and throat, the team at Southlake’s DaVinci Dentistry can fabricate an oral appliance designed to prop the mouth open at night, customized specifically for you. Drs. Khal and Raed Ajlouni are experienced in dental sleep medicine, and they can combine an accurate diagnosis coupled with oral appliance therapy to help treat your condition, decrease risks and improve your quality of life. Contact us by calling 817-251-9333, filling out our online appointment request or connecting with us on Facebook.