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Who Is a Good Candidate for Dental Implants?

Headshot of dark-haired man with facial hair in a gray suit and checkered button-up shirt smiling

Are you missing a tooth or two and looking to replace them? Your dentist may recommend dental implants to restore your smile—but not everyone may be a candidate for the procedure. Here’s how to know whether or not you’re a good candidate!

1. Healthy Gums

Having healthy gums is crucial because specialists must work closely with your gums during the procedure. Thus, patients who have gum infections like gingivitis or periodontal disease would not likely be ideal candidates.

2. Sufficient Bone Density

A sufficient amount of bone density is required in order for the implant to be protected and supported. Having a strong jaw is important when anchoring the implants. However, people who suffer from bone loss in their jawbone can still get dental implants, but it will require another set of procedures to rebuild your bone first.

3. Great Oral Health & Hygiene

A good candidate will have no infections or other dental problems that could interfere with the surgical procedure. They will also be devoted to taking exemplary care of their oral hygiene after the implant process, particularly to the surrounding gums. Daily brushing and flossing, as well as routine follow-up visits to the dentist are an important part of keeping your implants and your mouth in tip-top shape.

4. No Tobacco Use

Those who use tobacco products are not ideal for this procedure because smoking and tobacco prevents healing in the mouth and can decrease the chances of a successful implant. We recommend quitting smoking to protect your oral health!

4. Minimal Bruxism

Those who struggle with teeth grinding and clenching may place too much pressure on the implants and risk a failed end result. If you do grind your teeth, ask us about our custom-fitted nightguards to protect your smile.

Consult with Our Team!

If your oral health isn’t in the best shape, you could still be a candidate for dental implants; it will all depend on the severity of your condition. We recommend that you consult with our dentists for an expert opinion. At High Point Family Dentistry, we are devoted to providing quality oral care. We offer a FREE consultation for those interested in dental implants. Schedule an appointment with us today.

The possibility of reclaiming your smile is within reach!

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Why Do My Teeth Turn Yellow?

Aerial view of an off-white and teal mug holding coppery brown coffee on a matching saucer over a very light blue surface

We often associate yellow and stained teeth with uncleanliness, but what if you have yellow teeth despite keeping a strict brushing and flossing schedule? There are actually quite a few reasons why you may be getting yellow teeth. Here are the most common causes:

1. Diet

Acidic foods are known for promoting stains because they wear down enamel. Moreover, when bacteria on your teeth feed on the sugars and starches on the surface of your teeth, they release even more acid in your mouth. So foods like citrus, berries, and candy, and drinks like soda, coffee, and alcohol can all contribute to stained teeth.

2. Genetics

Unfortunately, your yellow teeth may be due to genetics. If your family members have yellow teeth for no apparent reason, your tooth color may simply be hereditary.

3. Weak Enamel

If you have yellow teeth despite maintaining good health, you may have weak enamel. This makes the dentin, or the layer underneath your enamel that has a naturally slightly yellow tint, appear more strongly and give your teeth a yellowed appearance. Thin enamel is caused by genetics and various lifestyle factors, such as those mentioned on this list.

4. Side Effect of Certain Medications

Some antibiotics and contraceptives can stain teeth. Talk to your doctor before discontinuing medications, though!

5. Physical Trauma

Chipped, cracked, and broken teeth have damaged enamel, thereby making it easier for them to stain.

6. Excessive Fluoride

A safe amount of fluoride is great for teeth and prevents the formation of cavities. However, too much fluoride can actually cause brown spots on your teeth! Using toothpaste with fluoride, drinking fluoridated water, and getting fluoride treatments at your dentist’s office is a perfect amount of fluoride exposure.

7. Smoking

Smoking lowers your immunity, making it harder to ward off bacteria on the surface of your teeth. Smoking has a major negative impact on your overall health, so it is best to quit smoking ASAP or avoid it entirely.

How to Fix Yellow Teeth

It’s best to identify the primary cause of your yellow teeth in order to prevent them from further discoloration and damage, but no matter the cause, there are solutions to brighten your smile. At High Point Family Dentistry, we offer three options for teeth whitening:

  • Custom trays to whiten your teeth accurately in the comfort of your own home
  • One-size trays for maximum affordability
  • In-office whitening that can lighten your teeth up to eight shades in under an hour
  • There’s no reason for you to not love your smile. Our team is here to help restore your confidence and oral health. Contact us today!

    Do you want the Hollywood smile of your dreams?

    Schedule Your Appointment

    How Do Astronauts Brush Their Teeth?

    Astronaut floating in outer space

    You’ve probably had freeze-dried ice cream or another different astronaut-style snack, or you’ve at least heard about the unique ways that astronauts eat in zero-gravity environments. But how do astronauts carry out normal everyday tasks, like brushing their teeth?

    What You Need to Brush Your Teeth in Space

    Astronauts can use the same types of toothbrushes and toothpastes that we use here on Earth, although it’s easier to use toothpastes with fixed caps so that there’s one less thing to worry about floating around while they’re brushing their teeth. They may also prefer special toothpaste that they can swallow to avoid a mess and extra waste. Another item that astronauts need to brush their teeth are drink bags, which are small foil pouches that are filled with water and come with an attached straw.

    The Brushing Process

    First, the astronaut attaches their toothpaste tube to a nearby wall. With the toothbrush in one hand and the drink pouch in the other, they squeeze a small bead of water from the pouch while simultaneously gliding their toothbrush over it. The toothbrush will instantly suck up the water. Then, the astronaut takes their toothpaste and repeats the same process. They will brush their teeth like usual! Once they are done, all they have to do is squeeze some water over their brush and wipe it off with a towel to clean it. Then they can pack up their things and get on with their day.

    The key difference between brushing your teeth in space and on Earth is that astronauts don’t have the luxury of doing so over a sink, which makes spitting difficult. Instead of spitting, they just have to take a couple sips of water from their drink bag and—you guessed it—swallow their toothpaste! That certainly must take some getting used to.

    Come See Us!

    Whether you’re in space or down here on Earth, brushing your teeth twice a day is one of the best ways to maintain your oral health. And for all of you who aren’t traveling around our galaxy, don’t forget to pop into the dentist for your regular dental check-ups!

    Do you want high-quality dental care that is out of this world?

    Contact Us!

    Cosmetic Dentistry Can Boost Your Self-Esteem

    Woman with veneers smiling for a selfie

    If you’re embarrassed by your smile, cosmetic dentistry might be the right solution for you! Cosmetic dentistry can transform the appearance of your teeth in both dramatic and subtle ways. Our wide range of cosmetic services can fix aesthetic tooth imperfections, give you the smile you’ve always wanted, and boost your self-esteem.

    What aesthetic tooth imperfections can cosmetic dentistry fix?

    One of the most common issues that cosmetic dentistry can solve is tooth discoloration. With professional teeth whitening, you can remove the stains and discoloration that appear over time, especially from drinking beverages like coffee and red wine, as well as smoking. The professional teeth whitening process involves a bleaching treatment that can be applied in an in-office session or with custom take-home trays. There are also over-the-counter whitening products, but professional whitening has more effective, longer-lasting results.

    The second most common problem that cosmetic dentistry can fix is crooked, misshapen teeth. Treatment options for this issue include veneers, crowns, and orthodontics. Veneers are thin shells of porcelain that can correct small gaps, chips, permanent stains, and mildly misaligned teeth. Dental Crowns are a natural-looking, tooth-colored cap that can completely cover your tooth if it is misshapen, damaged, or discolored. To correct tooth alignment, there are many orthodontic options, such as Invisalign® and traditional braces to achieve a straighter smile.

    How does cosmetic dentistry boost your self-esteem?

    There are many positive benefits to having a beautiful smile. It can increase your levels of social interaction and make you less self-conscious when you meet new people. With a better smile, you will also feel more confident in your workplace and be less likely to shy away from conversations with co-workers or upper management. If you’re missing teeth, cosmetic dentistry can also replace your teeth with natural-looking alternatives to complete your smile and improve your self-esteem.

    Schedule your cosmetic consultation!

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    Valentine’s Day Makeover

    Couple in winter coats and hats hugging outside while woman holds red heart balloons.

    Give the gift of a cosmetic smile makeover to yourself or your sweetie this Valentine’s Day. Smiles often shape first impressions, and we believe everyone deserves to feel confident and secure about their teeth. At High Point Family Dentistry, we can transform smiles by changing the color, shape, and size of teeth with our cosmetic services, including teeth whitening and veneers.

    Teeth Whitening

    It’s not uncommon for teeth to become dull and discolored over time, and many over-the-counter whitening products don’t produce significant results. Professional teeth whitening lightens teeth safely and effectively to help you achieve a long-lasting, brighter smile. We offer one-size whitening trays, custom-fit whitening trays, and in-office whitening so you or your special someone can choose a whitening treatment that’s right for them.

    Veneers

    If you’re unhappy with the shape, color, or size of your teeth, our veneers can cover esthetic imperfections to give you a flawless, beautiful smile. Veneers are thin, custom-made porcelain shells that are adhered to the front side of each tooth. With veneers, we’re able to design your smile in a way that blends in with your natural teeth for a seamless appearance. Whether you’re looking into veneers for yourself or someone else, they can be a great way to turn a dream smile into a reality.

    Give the Gift of a Beautiful Smile

    The gift of a cosmetic smile treatment is one that’s hard to top! Our High Point team looks forward to helping you treat your special someone to a smile makeover that will leave them smiling. To learn more about our cosmetic services, contact our office. Someone from our compassionate team would be more than happy to discuss our options with you further.

    Schedule your cosmetic consultation!

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    Positive Dental Habits

    Young woman in green tank top brushing teeth standing in her white bathroom

    The key to developing positive dental habits is setting a solid routine. Keeping your teeth consistently clean and healthy, as well as maintaining a healthy diet, are great ways to avoid costly and painful dental procedures in the future. Here are simple ways to create a dental routine and gain positive dental habits.

    1. Brush Your Teeth Thoroughly

    Yes, there is a right way to brush your teeth! Try to brush your teeth for two minutes at a time, using small circles to clean every surface of your teeth effectively. Ask your dentist for tips on how to brush your teeth properly if you don’t think you have the technique down right.

    2. Floss Everyday

    Only a third of Americans floss their teeth daily, but it’s a necessary habit that everyone should develop! Flossing clears plaque and bacteria from tight spaces that your toothbrush can’t reach. Not flossing can put you at risk for gum disease, which starts when plaque and bacteria get trapped under the gum line and make your gums infected and inflamed.

    3. Rinse Well

    After you’re done brushing and flossing, rinse your mouth to wash away any bacteria and plaque that may still be sitting on the surface of your teeth. It’s a quick, simple way to take extra good care of your oral health.

    4. Don’t Eat Before Bed

    Eating before bed may sound like a great idea, but it can actually cause more harm than good. Our bodies restore and repair while we sleep. Our digestive systems slow down, so they can’t properly break down anything we’ve eaten right before bed. Because of this, we don’t produce as much saliva to wash away bacteria from the surface of our teeth. Try not to eat anything for two to three hours before you go to bed to avoid this. If you’re tempted to fill your belly at night, try keeping a glass of water by your bed to kill any cravings. In general, it is best to avoid sugary, acidic, and sticky foods because they more easily wear down enamel.

    5. See Your Dentist Regularly

    Just because you carefully brush and floss your teeth doesn’t mean you’re clear of any dental issues. Your dentist will be able to give you a thorough examination and take X-rays of your teeth and gums to rule out any potential issues.

    Make it your goal to create positive dental habits in the new year! Our staff at High Point Family Dentistry is committed to providing you with the best oral care and are more than happy to help answer any questions that you may have.

    Contact us to schedule your appointment!

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    What Are Those Things in the Dentist’s Office?

    hand holding dental laser with purple lighted tip

    Ever wondered what dentists use to clean and examine your teeth? You’re not alone! It’s daunting to sit in the dentist’s chair and not understand the instruments that the hygienist and dentist are using. Let’s take a look at the most popular dental tools and their purposes.

    Mouth Mirror

    The mouth mirror is a small, circular mirror attached to a long handle. Your dentist uses it to look at tight spaces in your mouth, paying close attention to areas that have tartar buildup. Another use for the mouth mirror is to simply push your tongue or cheek away to get a better look at your teeth!

    Saliva Ejector

    What’s that little vacuum that sucks up your spit during a treatment? That’s the saliva ejector, which dries your mouth so the dentist can better perform their work.

    Scalers

    Scalers are the hooked instruments that your hygienist uses to scrape plaque and tartar off your teeth. It makes what many think is a very unpleasant scraping sound. While temporarily uncomfortable, you may quickly feel the difference between not having your teeth scaled compared to having them scaled!

    Drill

    Have a cavity? Chances are you’ll have some time with the drill, which removes the area of decay and prepares the tooth for a filling.

    Probe

    Your dentist uses a probe to examine your gums and check for signs of gum disease.

    Intraoral Camera

    Want to know what your dentist is looking at? At High Point Family Dentistry, we use intraoral cameras so our patients can take a look at their teeth and see what the dentist sees! Now you never have to wonder what we’re seeing during an examination.

    Isolite®

    Another high-tech feature that High Point Family Dentistry is proud to use is the Isolite patient comfort system. It simultaneously holds your mouth open for you and keeps it illuminated so your dentist can see their work. It even sucks away fluids!

    X-Ray Machine

    If you’re a new patient or haven’t had X-rays taken in a while, your dentist will want to have new X-rays taken during your visit. We use digital X-rays because they emit less radiation than regular X-rays and are quick.

    Next time you visit the dentist, don’t be frightened by the different instruments that your dentist uses. At High Point Family Dentistry, we only utilize the most up-to-date technologies so our patients can enjoy a faster and more accurate appointment. Contact us today and see the difference for yourself!

    Schedule your appointment today!

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    Should I Be Brushing My Pet’s Teeth?

    puppy on white carpet needs teeth brushed

    In the same way that it’s vital for humans to brush their teeth to practice good oral health, it’s important that your pet gets the same treatment to maintain a healthy mouth.

    Why You Should Brush Your Pet’s Teeth

    When you brush your pet’s teeth, you are removing plaque and tartar from their teeth. If left untreated, the tartar and plaque can build up and cause serious dental issues, such as gingivitis, cavities, gum disease, tooth loss, and more, not to mention bad breath. These oral issues can even lead to serious conditions in other parts of your pet’s body. This includes liver, heart, and kidney problems that can cause chronic pain and a short lifespan. By brushing your pet’s teeth, you are taking care of body their oral health and their overall health.

    How You Should Brush Your Pet’s Teeth

    Unfortunately, brushing your pet’s teeth is not particularly enjoyable. That’s why it’s important to establish a routine and brush their teeth at least three times a week. Start by finding a time when your pet is relaxed and comfortable. You also need to come prepared. Use a toothbrush and toothpaste made especially for pets.

    Getting Used to It

    When you have all of your tools and your pet is calm, kneel or sit in front of them. Never stand above them or hold them down as this will make them anxious and upset. Next, test your pet’s willingness to have you near their mouth by rubbing your finger along their teeth and gums using light pressure. If your pet is comfortable with that, spread a bit of toothpaste on your finger and hold it out for them to taste. This will help them get used to the toothpaste.

    The Technique

    Once your pet is used to the taste of the toothpaste and the feel of something in their mouth, it’s time to start brushing! Lift your pet’s upper lip and gently massage the gum line and teeth with the toothbrush, brushing in small circles. Start with a few teeth at a time, working through the entire mouth for two minutes total. It’s most important to hit the outsides of the canine and back teeth, which is where plaque tends to build up. Some light bleeding might occur, and that’s ok. If you notice anything more, you are either brushing too aggressively or your pet might be showing signs of gum disease. Talk to your vet right away if this is the case.

    Rewards

    Finally, end the tooth brushing experience by rewarding your pet. Give them a treat, some extra love, or playtime. It’s important that they see this as something to look forward to or something that they’ll be rewarded for doing.

    While it’s very important to take care of your pet’s teeth, be sure to take care of yours, as well! At High Point Family Dentistry, we’re dedicated to providing you with the best oral care. Call us today to make an appointment!

    Schedule your appointment today!

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    Dental Veneers FAQs

    young man with dental veneers smiling

    Ever wonder how your favorite celebrities have perfect smiles? The answer is likely dental veneers, which are thin sheets of porcelain that can mask chips, wide gaps, and discoloration for a brighter and more beautiful smile. If you’re considering veneers, we’ve put together answers to some of your most pressing questions.

    What Are Dental Veneers?

    Dental veneers are thin porcelain shells that are custom made to fit over your teeth. They can cover up tooth discoloration, cracks, and gaps, and can also lengthen your teeth. Dental veneers are a permanent procedure, so it is important to think carefully about whether or not you would like to proceed with getting them.

    What Is the Dental Veneers Process?

    First, you’ll have a smile design consultation with your dentist to map out what your needs are. Your dentist will then design the perfect smile for you. Once the plan is drawn up, they will shave some of the enamel from your teeth to create space for the veneers so they feel as natural and comfortable as possible. After that, they will take impressions of your teeth to send to a lab that will design your veneers.

    When your veneers are ready, you will return to the dentist’s office for a final fitting. Once you approve of the look and fit, your dentist will bond your veneers to your teeth.

    How Do I Take Care of Veneers?

    Veneers function just like natural teeth, so you don’t need to do anything differently to maintain them. Just brush and floss them as you normally would!

    How Much Do Veneers Cost?

    The cost of veneers depends on the number you get and the material used. After your initial consultation, we will go over cost and financing options with you. We offer CareCredit® and an in-house Dental Savers Plan that can help you save 20-40% on cosmetic treatments.

    At High Point Family Dentistry, we’re committed to helping you have a beautiful smile that you are proud of showing off. If you are interested in dental veneers, our staff is happy to assist you.

    Contact us to schedule a consultation!

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    5 Things Every Bathroom Needs for Great Oral Health

    bathroom sink organized for good oral health routine

    You know that oral health is important, but do you know what you need to keep your teeth clean and healthy? Here are 5 things your bathroom needs to ensure you’re taking care of your smile.

    Toothbrush

    One of the most important dental tools in your bathroom, your toothbrush is your battle sword against bacteria and plaque. But what kind of toothbrush should you be using?

    Most dentists agree that a soft-bristled brush is best for removing debris and plaque from your teeth and along your gum line. The shape and grip of the toothbrush is less important. Just pick whatever helps you brush most thoroughly! Speaking of thorough, many find electric toothbrushes are able to remove more plaque from your mouth than your average toothbrush. As long as you’re dedicated to a comprehensive brush every time, though, a regular toothbrush should work just fine. Be sure to replace your toothbrush as soon as you notice wear, or about every three months, whichever comes first.

    Toothpaste

    At one time, you’ve probably stood in the drugstore looking at all of the toothpaste choices wondering which to buy. As a rule of thumb, look for a toothpaste that contains fluoride, which works to strengthen the outer enamel of your teeth. If you want to whiten your teeth, there are some important ingredients to look for. Ingredients like magnesium carbonate, hydrated aluminum oxides, and calcium carbonate, hydrogen peroxide, or carbamide peroxide all have whitening capabilities.

    Floss

    Floss is another must-have for good oral hygiene. You should be flossing every day, twice a day. Standard floss is a slightly better choice because it can curve to get between teeth at the gumline. Floss picks are also effective, though. Just make sure to thoroughly clean between teeth and gums.

    Mouthwash

    According to the American Dental Association (ADA), mouthwash has a number of benefits to help keep your mouth clean. It can reduce gingivitis, prevent tooth decay, slow down the formation of tartar on teeth, and, of course, freshen breath. Mouthwash shouldn’t be used in place of brushing or flossing, but it’s a great source of additional protection for teeth.

    Storage

    Where and how you store these vital tools is as important as how well and often you use them. It should seem fairly obvious, but make sure you are storing your toothbrush away from the toilet. You don’t want to risk anything unsavory comingling with the toothbrush that goes in your mouth! It’s also important to note that you should store your toothbrush somewhere dry. Keeping your toothbrush somewhere that is vulnerable to moisture can lead to a moldy brush.

    At High Point Family Dentistry, we want to help you practice good oral hygiene. While your at-home care is vital to your dental health, it’s important that you don’t miss your regular cleanings.

    Make an appointment with us today!

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