Good, Clean, Wholesome Family Dentistry

You love your teeth. You brush them twice a day, floss once a day, and see your dentist regularly. Right? We love your teeth, too! In fact, there’s so much to know about caring for your oral health that dentistry has quite a few categories of specialties and different kinds of dentists.

The primary dentist in your life should be your family dentist, also known as a general dentist. Your family dentist is who you will see most often for dental check-ups. But how exactly is family dentistry different from other kinds of dentistry? Midlothian dentists Dr. Alex Hawkins and Dr. Gena Neidert share more below about family dentistry.

Types of Dentistry

All dentists have an undergraduate degree and then go on to about four years of dental school. This earns them either a doctorate of dental medicine (DMD) or doctorate of dental surgery (DDS). To become more specialized, the dentist will need additional education and clinical experience.

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Same Day Dentistry – Too Good to Be True?

In a world of same day shipping and same day photo prints, your dental restorations can now be same day services too! This is thanks to CEREC® milling machines and digital imaging technology. CEREC is short for “ceramic reconstruction”. This technology has been around since the early 1980s and it’s only gotten better with time, for both dentists and patients.

CEREC machines use CAD/CAM technology–computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing. They allow your Midlothian dentists to make and install a dental crown–and other restorations–all in the same visit. This is very good news if you have a chipped tooth or a very bad cavity that needs to be treated immediately.

So what exactly is CEREC? How does it work? And more importantly, what does it do for you? Hawkins Family Dentistry explains more below.

Benefits for Patients

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What Happens in Your Mouth While You Sleep?

Ah, nighttime… the end of the day, the ceasing of work, and hopefully a good night’s sleep. But did you know things are still happening in your mouth all night long, even if you’re blissfully unaware of it? The Midlothian dentists of Hawkins Family Dentistry shed some light on the world of your mouth and everything going on inside of it while you catch some zzz’s.

Dry Mouth

You produce much less saliva overnight than you do during the day—your body’s way of minimizing the risk of choking. This leads to the common occurrence of dry mouth. Dry mouth can be a bit uncomfortable and lead to more cavities and bad breath. It’s perfectly fine and normal to have less saliva at night but to take care of your oral health, it’s important that you brush and floss before going to bed.

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Sugar Rush: When Sweet Turns Bitter

You’ve heard it before. Too much sugar is not good for little bodies. Or, more precisely, added sugar is not good for people, big or small. The more we learn about how sugar affects the body, the more we realize that lots of added sugar has many downsides for health. This is particularly true of dental health. Sugar can cause serious problems for tiny teeth.

The Rise & Fall

A sugar rush is a real thing, and it can be no joke. Sugar is a simple source of energy that the body can use very quickly to make energy. Because the body uses it so quickly, the sugar rush is generally followed by a sugar crash when the body runs out of the high-energy sugar.

The human body isn’t the only thing that feeds quickly on the simple sugar. The bacteria in your child’s mouth also like to feed on sugars. When they eat sugary foods or drink high-sugar drinks, the bacteria in their mouth begin to feast. This lets the cavity-causing bacteria grow quickly, making lots more bacteria. Read more ›

Posted in Dental Health

Am I Too Old for Braces?

How old is too old for braces? It’s an interesting question—and the answer may surprise you! Hawkins Family Dentistry in Midlothian would like to share some information with readers today regarding patient age as it relates to orthodontic treatment.

Spoiler Alert!

Patient age alone is not a deal breaker when it comes to successful orthodontic treatment outcomes, so what’s the determining factor? Simply put— the health of gums and bone. For example, if a patient has uncontrolled periodontal (gum) disease, the moving of teeth within the bone caused by orthodontic appliances can aggravate gum disease symptoms. Other medical conditions or medications can also interfere with orthodontic treatment. Some of these include: Read more ›

Posted in Dental Health, Dental Services, Dental Technology

Could White Teeth Help You Land a Job Interview?

A recent, three-part study by Crest® puts numbers to what most of us already knew – white teeth are beautiful and powerful! The study used both qualitative and quantitative measures in multiple settings to determine what effect white teeth can have on a person’s life.

In a portion of the study on employment, researchers found that whiter teeth greatly increased a person’s chance of being offered jobs but also of receiving higher pay. In a portion of the study on romance, subjects went on simulated dates and found the dates were more successful after their teeth had been whitened.

Dr. Dacher Keltner, smile psychologist and psychology professor, says, “This study provides some of the first findings that speak to the powerful benefits of having a whiter smile.” Read more ›

Posted in Dental Services, Services, Teeth Whitening

How are Dental Savings Plans Different from Insurance?

Understanding any type of medical or dental insurance can be a challenge, especially for uninsured folks trying to find a plan on their own. According to the National Association of Dental Plans, about 74 million Americans had no dental insurance coverage at the end of 2016. One possible solution is dental savings plans (also called dental discount plans).

Dr. Hawkins and Dr. Neidert would like to talk about plans like these and their potential to reduce out-of-pocket dental costs for patients (who doesn’t like to save money?). Read more ›

Posted in Dental Health Care, Dental Services

Bonding: A Perfect Smile is Always in Style

Whether you’ve never been thrilled with your smile, or it lacks the luster it once had, bonding is a multipurpose cosmetic and restorative dental procedure that can be performed on patients of all ages. Bonding has the capability to fill gaps, correct damage, and refurbish the overall structure and look of your teeth. Hawkins Family Dentistry wants every patient to feel good about their smile, but if you feel less than confident in yours, we may recommend a simple and affordable treatment called dental bonding. Read more ›

Posted in Dental Health, Dental Services

Oral Cancer – Prevention & Early Detection

Cancer is always a scary word—but it doesn’t have to be the last word. Equipped with good information and the best doctors, you can feel empowered to navigate whatever stands before you or your loved one. Oral cancer is common, affecting approximately 50,000 Americans every year. If you have more questions about oral cancer, read more below from Dr. Hawkins and Dr. Neidert at Hawkins Family Dentistry in Midlothian. Read more ›

Posted in Dental Health, Oral Cancer

Toothbrush Timers Can Make Brushing Fun for Kids!

Many parents wonder how to get—and keep—their kids interested in brushing their teeth. A wall chart with stickers may be enough, but some kids get bored more easily than others (especially in today’s digital age).

While you may wish at times that your kids didn’t spend so much time online, technology does offer some positives when it comes to keeping kids motivated about regular oral hygiene. Dr. Hawkins and Dr. Neidert at Hawkins Family Dentistry would like to share some ideas about using digital resources to help kids get into the habit of taking care of their teeth. Read more ›

Posted in Dental Health

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