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The health and looks of your teeth and the perceived social status

Besides your regular cleaning, what is the most common reason you go to the dentist? Tooth hurting? Well, it's a good time to make an ap...

Tuesday, October 1, 2019


Vaping has been in the news a lot lately, mostly because no one really knows the impact it has on our health yet. There have been so me highly publicized cases, but even those don't have a diagnosis. So how about vaping and the impact on your oral health? Well, we can say it has a higher risk of tooth decay, it can contribute to gingivitis, and may increase the chances or cancer risks, including oral cancer.
Because it was considered a healthier alternative to smoking cigarettes it wasn't scrutinized to much for too long. That's why we don't have to much data about vaping right now. But dentists noticed tooth decay in young adults for a while and, until recently, it was attributed to soda or energy drinks. It wasn't until lately that we started to make a distinction in decay caused by e-cigarettes. It is not clear why yet since the ingredients and breakdown byproducts haven't been tested, but several culprits stood up.
Propylene glycol, is an alcohol that's sometimes used in food processing because it mixes well with flavors, but it can cause dry mouth, and it also breaks down into different acids, that can deteriorate tooth enamel and soft tissues.
So if you decide to keep vaping - your oral health has to be impeccable. Brush twice a day like you do regularly, but researchers say wait at least 20 minutes after vaping. In case the acidic vapors soften your enamel, brushing too soon might remove some of that enamel.
Be extra thorough to clean between your teeth and along your gum line. So floss daily and also try irrigators and see if you get good results.
Try to avoid dry mouth, there are several product that help prevent that, including Biotene or natural mouth wash that we offer in our office.
Also, see your dentist more often and on regular basis (meaning don't skip your appointments!) and let them know that you are vaping, so they are aware to check certain tell-tell signs.
We have the Vaping check box in our New Patient forms at Aliso Viejo Dental, and so should all dental offices these days to help prevent any problems caused by vaping to your oral health.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Antibiotic resistance

Antibiotic resistance is one of the fastest growing health problems and threatens to bring us back  when simple infections could be fatal. Aliso Viejo Dental and Dr Preda are working on improving the antibiotic prescribing process and educate our Patients about the importance of appropriate use.
Optimizing how we use and prescribe antibiotics, we protect Patients and combat antibiotic resistance!
Antibiotics save lives and are critical for treating dental infections, but at least 30% of them are prescribed unnecessarily, and Dentists prescribe about 10% of the total
Improving the way Doctors, Dentists and other healthcare professionals prescribe antibiotics helps keep us healthy now, fight antibiotic resistance, and also ensures that these lifesaving drugs will be available for future generations.
Here are some facts that we all should consider when it comes to prescriptions of antibiotics:

1 Antibiotics save lives, and that is a fact. When a Patient needs antibiotics, the benefits are more important than the risks or the future resistance.

2 Antibiotics aren’t always the answer, that's why in our office we offer the alternative whenever possible and suitable. We've seen all kinds of infections to know the difference and the better options.

3 Antibiotics don't work on viruses, like colds, flu, bronchitis, or
runny noses, even if the mucus is thick, yellow, or green (this doesn't apply to dental offices, but it's good to know)

4 Antibiotics are only needed for treating infections caused by bacteria, but even some
bacterial infections get better without antibiotics, including many sinus infections.

5 Take antibiotics exactly as prescribed. Ask us if you have any questions about your antibiotics, or if you develop any side effects.

Hopefully preventative dentistry will keep you away from getting an infection, so this would be only a rare emergency. In the mean time stay and keep others healthy by cleaning hands, covering coughs, staying home when sick, and getting recommended vaccines, including the flu vaccine.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

How to chose an insurance plan?

This is the routine for pretty much everyone, we get a new job, we wait 90 days then we get to chose a new insurance. And then we go to the doctor or dentist and they tell us - well you need knee surgery or you need Invisalign just to find out that your insurance barely covers that, or deductibles are huge, or not covered at all. Not sure why we do this backwards, this is upside down, we should first know what our needs are and THEN choose our health, dental or vision insurance.
So how do I chose an insurance plan correctly? First you should know your needs, and then chose an insurance plan tailored to your specific condition. How do you do that? Ideally, you had insurance and got treatment before and you know what you need. But if you don't, then you are taking a shot in the dark and hope for the best!
But there might be hope, and that's why we advise our Patients about their insurance plan depending on their specific needs. Most of the time you can't change your dental plan till next year, after it expires, which is still better than nothing. Now you'll know you need coverage for implants, or a night guard, or Invisalign for yourself or braces for your kid. But until then you can also consider getting a second insurance plan and use it as primary (or secondary, depending on preferred coverage). And this is something that you can do right away. Just make sure there is no waiting period, or if there is and the price is right ask us how long can you wait on those invisible braces and if it's worth it. No one knows your dental needs and how everything works better than your dentist and our treatment and financial coordinators, they do this every day. So don't hesitate to call, text or email us and ask for help with choosing your dental insurance, we'll use our knowledge to help you for free, plus your next payments will be discounted and covered partly by your new insurance!

Friday, April 5, 2019

The value of a beautiful smile!

We are blessed to have such awesome Patients everyday! And every day is a great experience with each and every one, we discuss and we learn from every beautiful smile that comes through our door! And we do our best to make sure everyone leaves with a healthier, happy, beautiful smile!
And most people understand the value of a beautiful smile, how others see you and how people make their first impression about you, or how they form an opinion in the long run. We try to make the case of a healthy, beautiful smile as the first thing people see, notice and remember about you. Also, how they perceive a smile that they don't like as a lower social status, and you can find more details in this blog.
But sometimes people who otherwise take smart, educated decisions - don't see the value of improved dental health. We see people who are in the process of buying a new house or remodeling an old one, so they clearly understand what smart decisions are, not recognizing the importance of a bright, beautiful, healthy smile. Yes, buying a new house can be a great investment for your future, yes, remodeling your old one will most likely increases the value of your home. Yes, even buying a new car, a cool one might change how other people look at you and the way they perceive your status. Those are all good reasons to upgrade your life and move up on the ladder of social acceptance. Every time your friends will visit your home, and every time they see you coming out of that new flashy automobile they will think more of you, they will recognize your smart addition. Your boss might think - hmm, she seems smart and takes great decisions, or he understands the value and what it represents, maybe I'll consider this person for a promotion or give them more tasks because they look capable to handle more. And they would be right, the more good decisions you take - the more people will entrust you with other important things in their lives or work.
But what is the value of your beautiful smile? I hope more people would see their beautiful, healthy, trusty smile as an investment, as important as your house or fancy truck. If not more important, since they might only see your house once or twice a year, and you car maybe once or twice a week. But they will see your bright white smile all the time they are with you, and that might be 8 hours a day at work! Or they might just see it once at an important meeting or a sales visit if they are your customer, but that would make a great difference in the outcome if they trust you more and if they see how you understand good value.
Ready to improve your smile, improve the way others see you, get better first impressions, better friendships, better relationships, a better job, a better life and ultimately a better you? Make an appointment online at AlisoViejoDental.com, or call/text us at 949-425-1447

Monday, March 4, 2019

Why we stand out

I am like most people and I have my routine and my comfort zone (and my comfort food too!). And that is good because it provides some stability and some peace of mind in our lives. But sometimes it's good to explore, to see what else is out there, what is new and if we can do something better. You know where I'm going with this - sometimes is good to see if you can find a better option for a dentist. There are many dental offices in Aliso Viejo and the surrounding cities in Orange County, and they all provide great service, I'm sure. But we like to stand out, so we improved our office, our services and team, we updated our tools and procedures, and raised the bar! So here are a few reasons why you should chose us when you are looking for  a new dentist, or when going to the same old same old place doesn't cut it any more. Because let's be honest, if they didn't tell you that you could take care of a cracked tooth when it was still treatable instead of needing an implant - they didn't do their job right.
That's why we practice preventive dentistry, we believe in taking care of your oral health issues before they become a nightmare. We also believe in nutritional and dental care counseling to prevent issues from happening in the first place. It's cheaper and it makes total sense in the long run.
We offer free oral cancer screening for all our Patients, just because, again, it makes total sense, #ScreeningSavesLives. We use the ViziLite Pro device, and the process only take about 2 minutes.
We use Laser therapy for a lot of procedures, for less or no pain and faster healing. Laser is the best alternative to drills, it doesn't touch the tooth surface but it's gentle power sterilizes, cleans and desensitizes the cavity or the tooth.
We use the DryShield isolation system. DryShield is an intelligent breakthrough in isolation and helps make your visit shorter, more pleasant, and more comfortable!
We also use ReLeaf Suction system, your Hygiene cleaning visit will be up to 15 min shorter and more comfortable!
We safely remove old amalgam/mercury fillings! We use a special vacuum that filtrates and traps mercury particles .We use special Clean Up suction tips that completely cover your tooth and capture mercury vapors.
We should also mention  Digital X-Rays for low radiation, intra-oral pictures so you can better understand the symptoms and conditions, digital impressions - we are a #NoGoop, #NoGag practice.
If all this isn't enough - please consider our friendly staff, and our personalized treatment and service. We see New Patients every day and it become a routine to explain what their previous dentists didn't cover or even mention to them. "If I knew this was going to get this bad I would have taken care of it sooner". Yeap, we don't want OUR Patients to say that! Call or text us for more info at 949-425-1447.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Amalgam is fazing out

Amalgam was used in dentistry since forever, but lately it has been the subject of a lot of controversies and criticism. In an era when we are trying to be more health-conscious and more environmentally friendly - it is harder and harder to justify the use of amalgam any more. If this is the first time you hear about it - here is the skinny: amalgam is 50% mercury, now google "Is mercury toxic?" and brace yourself for some nightmares.
So lately European Union came up with a 3 year plan to faze out amalgam, starting with a virtual ban  for children under 15 years old, also pregnant and breastfeeding women as of July 1, 2018.
Hopefully some of those changes and rules will come in US soon, especially when these days we have so many better alternatives. Needless to say, our office has never used amalgam, we only use tooth colored composite fillings, we remove old silver-mercury in a safe environment for the Patient and for our staff. Safe removal of amalgam is becoming more and more popular especially with health-minded and environmentally conscious Patients, but for children and future Mothers too.
Using less amalgam and mercury is good for everyone, for Patients, for dental professionals and staff and for the environment too. Our office had amalgam traps and filters for years, from back when no one cared about this or required any standards. Our traps and filters get picked up and recycled or responsibly disposed, we don't pollute our city's or county sewers that eventually end up in the ocean, and we are proud of that!
But also there is a social injustice factor, that very few would think about. Since only amalgam fillings are covered by most insurance plans (composite fillings get downgraded and only partially covered) what happens is that lower income Patients are more likely to receive silver-mercury fillings. That goes for lower income children or Mothers too, and this is not fair.
It's time to end this and our office is proudly only using tooth colored, composite fillings (that happen to be BPA and gluten-free too), we are also SMART certified,
please check our website or give us a call for more info.