My Blog

Posts for: November, 2016

By Williamsburg Family Dentistry
November 22, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures

Academy Award-winning actress Kathy Bates knows how important it is to present your best face to the world — and one of the most important features of that face is a beaming smile. But there came a point when she noticed something was a little off. “I've always had good teeth, but it seemed to me as I was getting older that they weren't looking as good,” Kathy explained in a recent interview with Dear Doctor magazine.

That's when she decided it was time to take action. Kathy had orthodontic treatment when she was in her fifties, and she keeps her smile bright with tooth whitening treatments. She uses a kit provided by her dentist with a safe, effective whitening solution.

Of course, a bright, healthy smile looks great anywhere — whether you're on the red carpet or “off the grid.” And you don't have to be a Hollywood star to have professional whitening treatments. In fact, teeth whitening is one of the most popular and affordable cosmetic treatments modern dentistry offers.

The basic options for professional teeth whitening include in-office bleaching or take-home kits. Both types of dentist-supervised treatments offer a safe and effective means of getting a brighter smile; the main difference is how long they take to produce results. A single one-hour treatment in the office can make your teeth up to ten shades lighter — a big difference! To get that same lightening with at-home trays, it would take several days. On the plus side, the take-home kit is less expensive, and can achieve the same results in a bit more time.

It's important to note that not all teeth can be whitened with these treatments. Some teeth have intrinsic (internal) stains that aren't affected by external agents like bleaches. Also, teeth that have been restored (with bonding or veneers, for example) generally won't change color. And you can't necessarily whiten your teeth to any degree: Every tooth has a maximum whiteness, and adding more bleach won't lighten it beyond that level. Most people, however, find that teeth whitening treatments produce noticeable and pleasing results.

What about those off-the-shelf kits or in-the-mall kiosks? They might work… or they might not. But one thing's for sure: Without a dentist's supervision, you're on your own. That's the main reason why you should go with a pro if you're considering teeth whitening. We not only ensure that your treatment is safe — we can also give you a realistic idea of what results to expect, and we will make sure that other dental problems aren't keeping you from having a great-looking smile.

How often does Kathy Bates see her dentist for a checkup and cleaning? “I go about every four months,” she noted. “I'm pretty careful about it.” And if you've seen her smile, you can tell that it pays off. If you would like more information about teeth whitening, please contact us or schedule an appointment. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Important Teeth Whitening Questions Answered” and “Teeth Whitening.”

By Williamsburg Family Dentistry
November 16, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures

Teeth whitening treatments are an excellent way to quickly transform your smile. Several teeth whitening options are available, from teeth whiteningconvenient and affordable over-the-counter products to highly effective professional whitening treatments. Professional treatments performed by your dentist deliver the best results and can give you a brighter smile in less time. Professional teeth whitening treatments are available at the offices of Dr. Rick Rubin and Dr. Brett Dunnill, your Williamsburg dentists.

Benefits of Professional Teeth Whitening

There are many reasons to consider having professional teeth whitening done. For many patients dealing with stained or discolored teeth, professional teeth whitening has not only given them a whiter smile, but also a confidence boost. Teeth can become stained from certain types of foods and drinks and even from smoking. Discoloration can also occur with age or from the use of some medications. Whatever the cause, a dull smile can be quickly brightened with professional teeth whitening.

Many patients enjoy the convenience of over-the-counter teeth whitening products. However, the amount of bleaching agent present can differ from one type of product to the next, as well as across brands. For instance, whitening toothpastes and whitening strips are two at-home whitening products that can deliver completely different results depending on the product and the brand. In general, it takes longer to achieve the desired results with over-the-counter products and the results don’t last very long.

Professional teeth whitening treatments performed by your dentist are of higher quality than over-the-counter products. Professional treatments can deliver better results in less time. In short, you can achieve a whiter smile faster. Additionally, the whitening results of professional treatments tend to last much longer than those of over-the-counter products. In some cases, professional whitening results can last for up to five years.

Having your teeth professionally whitened is also safer than doing it yourself. All whitening treatments have the potential to irritate the gums or other sensitive areas of the mouth. Over-the-counter treatments done at home provide no means of protecting the gums. When you have professional whitening done, your dentist can apply a protective gel to the gums to prevent irritation. Additionally, dentists are highly skilled at applying whitening agents and can ensure more even results without gum irritation.

There are many reasons to consider professional teeth whitening. From a brighter smile to a boost in confidence, professional teeth whitening can be transformative. For professional teeth whitening in Williamsburg, VA contact Williamsburg Family Dentistry at (757) 345-5500.

By Williamsburg Family Dentistry
November 07, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: orthodontics   braces  

Think you're too old to have your teeth straightened? While we automatically pair “teenager” with “braces,” at least one in five orthodontic patients are adults. And there's many more that could benefit, as many as three-quarters of adults with a correctable bite problem.

But although orthodontics can be performed at any age, it's not a minor undertaking. It will require time, patience and expense. So, before you decide to undergo orthodontics, here are 3 simple questions to ask first.

Why? Like children and teenagers, adults can benefit cosmetically from correcting a poor bite. But there's another great reason besides a more attractive smile: misaligned teeth are more difficult to care for than normal teeth. Orthodontic treatment is an investment and potential cost-saver in your future dental health.

Why not? Even senior adults can successfully undergo treatment. But braces might be ill-advised if you have either poor oral or general health. Periodontal (gum) disease, for example, can cause bone loss, which makes it difficult to safely and successfully move teeth (and the effort could worsen current disease activity in the gums). Medical conditions like bleeding disorders, leukemia or uncontrollable diabetes could interfere as well. You'll need both a dental and medical examination beforehand.

How? We can use braces — or we might be able to use a newer, more popular option with adults called clear aligners. These are a series of computer-designed clear, plastic trays you wear in sequence until you finish the series. Each tray is slightly smaller than the previous tray, moving the teeth in much the same manner as braces. But unlike braces, you can remove aligners for cleaning or a rare special occasion — and they're much less noticeable than metal braces. Although in some cases braces may still be the best option, it's also possible clear aligners could be the option you've been looking for.

So, are you ready for a new smile and a more maintainable mouth? Visit us for the answers to your questions and see if braces (or clear aligners) can transform your life and health.

If you would like more information on orthodontic treatment for adults, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Orthodontics for the Older Adult.”