Veneers | Palm Harbor Dentist

186932212Obtaining the ‘perfect smile’ seems to be on the mind of a lot of patients now a days. Which so many cosmetic procedures, how do you know which one is for you? Lets talk about what veneers can do for you. Porcelain veneers are fabricated from a solid piece of porcelain. They fit over the front and underside of your tooth covering the entire surface of visible tooth. Veneers can be fitted to lengthen or widen teeth to close gaps or fill in chips.

How can veneers help you? Veneers can enhance the color and or shape of your tooth or teeth. Veneers are capable of providing a natural tooth appearance, but outside of the cosmetic benefits, veneers do the following:

-Gum tissue tolerates porcelain well.

-Porcelain veneers are resistant to stains.

-The color of a porcelain veneer can be selected such that it makes dark teeth appear whiter.

-Veneers offer a conservative approach to changing a tooth’s color and shape-veneers generally don’t require the extensive shaping prior to the procedure that crowns do, yet offer a stronger, more aesthetic alternative to bonding.

Modern porcelain veneers tend to last many years, are easy to care for, provide a very natural appearance, and offer a stronger alternative to other cosmetic options.

Veneers won’t erase preexisting issues, therefore an exam is needed to determine if you are a good candidate for veneers. Only a Dr. Lieberman can determine whether or not porcelain veneers are the best option for you. If you are unhappy with your smile and would like more information on porcelain veneers contact Dr. Lieberman today for more information.

To find out more about veneers contact Dr. Larry Lieberman and make an appointment 727-785-8017 or visit our website at www.dentist-lieberman.com.

Accepting patients from Safety Harbor, Palm Harbor, Clearwater, Dunedin, Tarpon Springs and all surrounding areas.

 

Foods that Aid in Oral Health | Palm Harbor Dentist

dental implantsMany people recognize that a healthy diet is important for a healthy body, but it’s important to realize that diet is important for oral health as well. What a person eats or drinks may contribute to tooth decay or gum disease, and in some cases, certain foods can actually help prevent tooth decay. Understanding oral health can help you make healthy decisions to keep your teeth safe.

Foods and drinks high in sugar and acid are typically bad for your teeth. The sugar provides food for bacteria that contributes to both tooth decay and periodontal disease, and foods high in acid wear down tooth enamel, making them weaker, more likely to crack, and more vulnerable to tooth decay. Some drinks – such as sugary sodas – are both acidic and sugary, and stay on your teeth long after you finish drinking them. These should be avoided if possible.

Foods that are low in sugar and acid, and high in fiber and water content tend to be good for teeth. Drinking plain water can help cleanse food, acid, and sugar from your teeth, minimizing tooth decay. Foods like celery can help brush food particles off of teeth, and they also encourage the production of saliva to cleanse the teeth. Foods high in calcium and protein (such as cheese, milk, meats, and nuts) tend to be low in sugar, but help contribute to stronger teeth by protecting tooth enamel.

In addition to the sugar and acid contents of food, patients should pay attention to how long the food is in contact with their teeth. Very soft foods (such as peanut butter) are more likely to be stuck between teeth, and drinks that are sipped throughout the day tend to stay in contact with teeth all day. If you do eat foods high in sugar or acid, try to eat them in a single sitting, and then brush your teeth immediately afterward, removing the food from your mouth. If you’re unable to brush your teeth, chew sugar free gum – sugar free gum encourages saliva to help cleanse your teeth, and also tends to contain Xylitol, which can help discourage bacteria growth in your mouth.

To find out more about oral health contact Dr. Larry Lieberman and make an appointment 727-785-8017 or visit our website at www.dentist-lieberman.com.

Accepting patients from Safety Harbor, Palm Harbor, Clearwater, Dunedin, Tarpon Springs and all surrounding areas.

Tooth Crowding | Palm Harbor Dentist

162713815While many children and adults have orthodontics (braces) to treat alignment and spacing issues, many more people have – or believe they have – problems with tooth crowding that goes untreated. Crowding can be caused by a number of different factors, and knowing the actual cause may impact the treatment options.

One of the common causes of tooth crowding is natural occurrence – so called mesial drift phenomenon, where your front teeth drift slowly to the center of the mouth. In the past, some dentists believed this was caused by the presence of wisdom teeth, crowding the front teeth from the rear of the mouth, though in reality many of the problems are due to simple insufficient space for the number of teeth as adults grow. Beyond mesial drift, other potential causes – such as weakened support due to periodontal disease, thumb sucking, and tongue thrusting – can also influence teeth to move in directions that are undesirable, leading to misalignment and crowding issues.

While many patients see crowding as a cosmetic problem, the reality is that poorly aligned teeth are at an increased risk for periodontal disease, decay, and the patient is more likely to suffer from TMJ (jaw-joint) problems, as their irregular bite may cause strain on their jaw over time. For these reasons, fixing alignment should be considered more than simply a cosmetic procedure – correcting the alignment allows the patient to have better access to brush and floss, and their bite will be more level.

If you notice crowding in your front teeth, make a point of asking your dentist about options in your next regular checkup. There are a number of treatments available, and treating the crowding early can help prevent more serious problems from developing in the future.

To find out more about tooth crowding contact Dr. Larry Lieberman and make an appointment 727-785-8017 or visit our website at www.dentist-lieberman.com.

Accepting patients from Safety Harbor, Palm Harbor, Clearwater, Dunedin, Tarpon Springs and all surrounding areas.

 

Halloween Candy | Palm Harbor Dentist

Halloween will soon be over, but the Halloween candy may live on for a few days or weeks. While dentists typically agree that sugar increases tooth decay, many also appreciate that Halloween candy is typically OK for kids, as long as it’s eaten in moderation and parents follow some basic guidelines.

First, sugar does contribute to decay by providing food for bacteria that damages teeth. Most Halloween candy is high in sugar, but simply eating candy isn’t necessarily going to cause decay. Rather, the sugar remaining on the teeth long term contributes to decay. Therefore, eating sugary candy isn’t necessarily damaging, as long as the time spent eating candy is limited, and immediately followed by rinsing the teeth with water, and brushing as soon as possible.

ThinkstockPhotos-178564205Not all Halloween candy is created equally, either. Sour candies tend to have far more acid than sweeter candies. The acid is more damaging to tooth enamel than plain sugar, and should be avoided if possible. Candies that are sticky – such as caramels, gummies, and popcorn balls – are more likely to stick to teeth, and therefore more likely to resist brushing. Because they may get stuck on teeth, they are more likely to cause tooth decay.

If possible, try to moderate candy consumption by limiting hungry and cravings with other healthier food sources – rather than allowing candy binges, allow minimal candy intake immediately following another meal, so that the child is less likely to be hungry, and normal post-meal brushing is imminent.

While Halloween can be fun, and candy is typically OK, be sure to ensure that candy is enjoyed in moderation, and try to avoid the overly acidic/sour and sticky/gummy candies.

To find out more about the effects of sour candy contact Dr. Larry Lieberman and make an appointment 727-785-8017 or visit our website at www.dentist-lieberman.com.

Accepting patients from Safety Harbor, Palm Harbor, Clearwater, Dunedin, Tarpon Springs and all surrounding areas.

Wisdom Teeth | Palm Harbor Dentist

177406608Wisdom teeth – the third and final set of molars in the rear of your mouth – are one of the least predictable teeth. Unlike other teeth, it’s not uncommon for wisdom teeth to be absent. Even more unusual, while some people have all four wisdom teeth, other people have only one, two, or three – and there seems to be no reliable predictor to determine how many wisdom teeth any given patient has prior to being X-rayed by a dentist.

For many people, the presence or absence of wisdom teeth is irrelevant – you can certainly live a full life with or without wisdom teeth – unless they’re present and problematic.

In many cases, wisdom teeth crowd other molars, grown in misaligned, or only partially erupt from the gum. Crowding can cause pain, tenderness, and further alignment issues with other teeth. In extreme cases, the wisdom teeth can grow in horizontally. In other cases, they can remain impacted – partially erupted through the gum, leaving the gum tissue broken. This condition allows bacteria to enter the gum tissue, surrounding the tooth where it can not be brushed or flossed, and can lead to significant decay of the tooth itself, as well as periodontal disease as the infection spreads to the surrounding gum tissue.

For these reasons, it’s common for many patients to first learn about their wisdom teeth when their dentist recommends they be removed. While not all wisdom teeth need to be removed, their potential for problems makes them likely candidates for extraction in many patients. The difficulty of extraction depends on many factors, such as number of wisdom teeth, their general alignment, and whether or not they’re compacting other teeth. If the wisdom teeth are fully erupted and visible, extraction may be simple; if the wisdom teeth are underneath the gums, the dentist or oral surgeon will need to cut into the gum to get to the teeth, which tends to be more invasive. In many cases, dentists will recommend removal of multiple wisdom teeth in one procedure, allowing for a single sedation and a single recovery period, so the patient does not need to repeat the healing process multiple times.

If you’re experiencing pain or discomfort near the back of your mouth, or if you’ve been told you have wisdom teeth that may be problematic, speak to your dentist about the various options available to you. Extraction may not be necessary, but it’s also possible that extraction could be a simple way to relieve pain and pressure caused by wisdom teeth.

To find out more about your wisdom teeth contact Dr. Larry Lieberman and make an appointment 727-785-8017 or visit our website at www.dentist-lieberman.com.

Accepting patients from Safety Harbor, Palm Harbor, Clearwater, Dunedin, Tarpon Springs and all surrounding areas.

What to Expect with Teeth Whitening | Palm Harbor Dentist

close up smile red lipstickEvery day you see commercials for teeth whitening products, toothpastes, kits, whitening rinses. So have you finally decided to have your teeth whitened? The first step is to be sure that your expectations are realistic. We all want those bright white teeth we see on celebrities but it’s important not to expect a celebrity-bright smile, as everyone’s teeth react differently to treatment.

You may expect quicker whitening results if you opt for an in-office whitening procedure. These procedures are considered safe, though you can expect some sensitivity in your teeth and gums, which usually resolves after the whitening procedure is complete.  It is not uncommon for the tooth color to dull a bit a week or two following this type of treatment, so using an at-home product  may help maintain the results following the treatment.

Your dentist, however, can typically offer two different whitening options. The first is take-home tray based, using chemicals stronger than over-the-counter trays, but working on the same basic principle. Often times dentist provided trays are custom-molded to the patients teeth, providing a smooth, comfortable fit suitable for wearing for multiple hours each day – often even overnight.  Beyond the trays, dentists can often perform whitening in the office, using light and heat activated bleaching chemicals, providing a significant whitening in as little as 60 minutes. Because the procedure is supervised by a dentist, much stronger chemicals can be used, and much more dramatic results can be seen almost immediately.

You can expect to see some results after one treatment, but you may choose to have more than one treatment to get the effect that you want. An in-office bleaching treatment usually takes 30 to 60 minutes.

How long can you expect the benefits to last? That depends in part on your habits. If you smoke, or if you drink large amounts of coffee or tea, you may need another procedure after a few years.

To find out more about whitening contact Dr. Larry Lieberman and make an appointment 727-785-8017 or visit our website at www.dentist-lieberman.com.

Accepting patients from Safety Harbor, Palm Harbor, Clearwater, Dunedin, Tarpon Springs and all surrounding areas.

Are You Suffering from TMJ? | Palm Harbor Dentist

200324634-001TMJ, or Temporomandibular Joint Syndrome, is one of the most misdiagnosed syndromes in the world. Oftentimes, TMJ is overlooked, as jaw related issues can be linked to a multitude of different health issues. TMJ symbolizes the first three anatomic areas of the head. The Temporomandibular Joint is important in which it is the joint that connects your jawbone to your skull. As it is two joints acting to support as one, when they break down, it can cause a series of pains to occur.

Signs and symptoms of TMJ:

  • Pain in the Jaw, especially around the joint
  • Popping or clicking of the jaw
  • Ear pain
  • Ringing or popping sounds in the ears
  • Headaches
  • Blurred Vision
  • Tight or sore jaw or neck muscles
  • Shoulder pain
  • Locking or dislocation of the jaw.

The exact cause of a person’s TMJ disorder is often difficult to determine. Your pain may be due to a combination of problems, such as arthritis or jaw injury. Some people who have jaw pain also tend to clench or grind their teeth, but many people habitually clench their teeth and never develop TMJ disorders. TMJ may cause anywhere from mild to severe pain and discomfort I people and can last for a short time or for many years. If you experience anything from chronic headaches, neck aches, dizziness, ear aches, hearing problems, pain or tenderness in the face, limited ability to open the mouth wide, or clicking, popping, or grating sound, contact Dr. Lieberman.

To find out more about TMJ contact Dr. Larry Lieberman and make an appointment 727-785-8017 or visit our website at www.dentist-lieberman.com.

Accepting patients from Safety Harbor, Palm Harbor, Clearwater, Dunedin, Tarpon Springs and all surrounding areas.

Laser Dentistry | Palm Harbor Dentist

ThinkstockPhotos-464323669Dr. Lieberman believes visiting the dentist does not have to be a painful and uncomfortable experience. Millions of Americans have what can be considered a dental-phobia. But with new technology dental fears are being eased.

Many people associate a trip to the dentist with the sound of the high-speed dental drill, but Dr. Lieberman has another tool at his disposal: a dental laser. While not commonly associated with dental treatment, lasers have been used in dentistry since 1990 for a variety of uses. During traditional dental drilling the cause of pain is related to heat, vibration and pressure. Lasers do not produce heat, vibration or pressure, making it nearly pain free.

Dr. Lieberman uses a tool known as a Periolase – a laser specially designed for dental use – to focus energy into a small point. This burst of energy can be accurately aimed, and when it makes contact with the mouth, it can assist the dentist in a variety of ways. Fans of lasers and science fiction probably imagine lasers are great for cutting through tissue, and that remains true in dental lasers; the Periolase can be used to remove diseased or infected tissue around teeth quickly and safely. Similar to removing tissue, in some cases the laser can be used to reshape gum and bone tissue, and the heat from lasers are occasionally used to seal tissue to help promote healing.

While cutting with a laser seems like a typical use, one of the most common uses of dental lasers is as a tool to kill bacteria – the laser is powerful enough to kill bacteria beneath the surface without removing the tissue, giving Dr. Lieberman a way to treat infected or diseased tissue that would otherwise be difficult to reach with normal tools.

The dental laser has a number of advantages for both patient and dentist – the laser is quieter than the drill, allowing the patient to enjoy a more relaxed experience. The bacteria-killing nature of the laser and its more precise use can lead to better results and shorter healing times. When used by a trained dentist, such as Dr. Lieberman, the dental laser is a fantastic technical advancement that both patients and dentist can appreciate.

Do not put off dental treatment and check-up due to fear. Your dentist is here to make it as easy as possible for you.

To find out more about laser dentistry contact Dr. Larry Lieberman and make an appointment 727-785-8017 or visit our website at www.dentist-lieberman.com.

Accepting patients from Safety Harbor, Palm Harbor, Clearwater, Dunedin, Tarpon Springs and all surrounding areas.

Guiding You to a Brighter Smile | Palm Harbor Dentist

close up smile red lipstickEveryone has heard of teeth whitening and it seems like everyone is doing it. It is a current, and long running dental trend as well as a frequently asked for cosmetic treatment. We all desire that dazzling bright white smile but many aren’t sure which route to take to obtain it. There are a few different methods to whiter teeth from toothpaste to professional services.

There are many brands of toothpaste that claim to whiten teeth, and stores sell all varieties of tooth whitening products – trays, gels, strips, and rinses – over the counter. The most basic form of teeth whitening is available as toothpaste – toothpaste, whether it’s labeled as whitening or not – typically contains small abrasive components that gently polish the surface of your teeth, removing discoloration caused by surface staining.

The over the counter whitening systems typically contain a bleaching agent – such as hydrogen peroxide – to lighten the color of your teeth by chemically bleaching them.  By applying the bleaching chemical to strips or trays, the peroxide can stay in contact with your teeth for 30 minutes at a time, often twice a day, often achieve quite a bit of whitening.

Dentists, however, can typically offer two different whitening options. The first is take-home tray based, using chemicals stronger than over-the-counter trays, but working on the same basic principle. Often times dentist provided trays are custom-molded to the patients teeth, providing a smooth, comfortable fit suitable for wearing for multiple hours each day – often even overnight.  Beyond the trays, dentists can often perform whitening in the office, using light and heat activated bleaching chemicals, providing a significant whitening in as little as 60 minutes. Because the procedure is supervised by a dentist, much stronger chemicals can be used, and much more dramatic results can be seen almost immediately.

No matter which method of teeth whitening you choose, the results will likely not be permanent. Your teeth are exposed to foods and drinks that will stain them over time, but your dentist can advise you on the proper procedure for repeating the whitening process at regular intervals.

If you’re unclear of which whitening method to choose Dr. Lieberman can guide you on the right treatment for your bright smile goals.

To find out more about teeth whitening contact Dr. Larry Lieberman and make an appointment 727-785-8017 or visit our website at www.dentist-lieberman.com.

Accepting patients from Safety Harbor, Palm Harbor, Clearwater, Dunedin, Tarpon Springs and all surrounding areas.

Are Amalgam Fillings Safe? | Palm Harbor Dentist

155472626Dental amalgam is a common material used to fill cavities. Fillings made with amalgam also are known as silver fillings. Over the years, concerns have been raised about the use of amalgam because it contains mercury.

There has been a longstanding discussion in the dental world over the effects of amalgam fillings. Silver fillings have been used for years to replace holes made by cavities or other tooth related injuries. The controversy surrounding amalgam fillings have to do with the mercury laced filling that they are actually composed of.

In a survey taken by dental professionals, a whopping 72% of individuals had no idea that silver filling contain mercury. Of that percentage of individuals, 92% of them would have felt safer about them if they had known.

Mercury is a neurotoxin that, at high levels, may cause neurological issues, autoimmune disease, chronic illnesses, and mental disorders.  Amalgams are 50% mercury laced with a combination of silver, tin, and copper. At a high level of exposure, OSHA is claiming that they are unhealthy.  With a number of concerning factors, amalgam fillings have made a huge impact on the dental world. As of recently, the US National Health and Nutrition Examination surveyed 31,000 adults and found that the number of dental fillings correlated to the incidence of cancer, mental conditions, thyroid conditions, neurological issues, and diseases of the eye.

While statistics show for themselves, research still must be done in the search for a sure reason to take amalgams off of the market. As we have been using them for years, they are also responsible for saving millions of teeth around the world.

To find out more contact Dr. Larry Lieberman and make an appointment 727-785-8017 or visit our website at www.dentist-lieberman.com.

Accepting patients from Safety Harbor, Palm Harbor, Clearwater, Dunedin, Tarpon Springs and all surrounding areas.