Dental Advice & Tips From Our Dentist in Mission, TX

Invisalign®

Invisalign's® invisible, removable, and comfortable aligners will give you the beautiful straight teeth you've always wanted. And best of all, no one can tell you're wearing them. Invisalign® is great for adults and teenagers. What is Invisalign®? Invisalign® is the invisible way to straighten

Learn more

Veneers

Teeth that are badly stained, shaped or crooked may be improved by a veneer placed on the surface of the affected teeth. Veneers are thin pieces of porcelain or plastic cemented over the front of your teeth to change their color or shape. Veneers are used on teeth with uneven surfaces or are chipped,

Learn more

Fillings

Frequently asked questions: dental fillings Are dental amalgams safe? Is it possible to have an allergic reaction to amalgam? Is it true that dental amalgams have been banned in other countries? Is there a filling material that matches tooth color? If my tooth doesn't hurt and my filling is still in

Learn more

Sealants

Sealants are liquid coatings that harden on the chewing surfaces of teeth and are showing a great deal of effectiveness in preventing cavities—even on teeth where decay has begun. The pits and grooves of your teeth are prime areas for opportunistic decay. Even regular brushing sometimes misses these

Learn more

Overview

Pain can occur in any number of places in your mouth: teeth, gums, roots, the palate, tongue and jaw. Cavities are a common culprit causing pain. Untreated cavities can impact nerves because of infections of the tooth and gums. Impacted and abscessed teeth and sore jaws from teeth grinding are other

Learn more

Your Rights and Responsibilities as a Patient

Patient Rights You have a right to choose your own dentist and schedule an appointment in a timely manner. You have a right to know the education and training of your dentist and the dental care team. You have a right to arrange to see the dentist every time you receive dental treatment,

Learn more

Introduction

Does mercury in the silver fillings in your mouth pose any long-term health risks? Does fluoride, in spite of everything we've been told since childhood, actually cause more harm than good? What does the latest research reveal about tobacco use on your overall oral health? This section is dedicated

Learn more

Are There Risks With Oral Piercings?

Oral piercings (usually in the tongue or around the lips) have quickly become a popular trend in today’s society. With this popular trend, it is important to realize that sometimes even precautions taken during the installation of the piercing jewelry are not enough to stave off harmful, long-term

Learn more

Toothaches

Simple toothaches can often be relieved by rinsing the mouth to clear it of debris and other matter. Sometimes, a toothache can be caused or aggravated by a piece of debris lodged between the tooth and another tooth. Avoid placing an aspirin between your tooth and gum to relieve pain, because the dissolving

Learn more

Is Tooth Sensitivity Permanently Curable?

Tooth sensitivity is a common problem, and many patients encounter pain or discomfort when they eat certain foods that are hot or cold. According to the Academy of General Dentistry, around 40 million adults suffer from sensitivity. Usually, the pain is temporary and can be treated to improve, but not cure the condition.

Learn more

What Can I Do At Home to Prevent Gum Disease?

Preventing inflammation around your gums starts with your at home oral hygiene routine. Gum disease or periodontitis is a gum infection that damages the soft tissue, and can destroy the bone if not treated promptly.

Learn more

Scaling and Root Planing

Some cases of acute periodontal (gum) disease that do not respond to more conventional treatment and self-care such as flossing may require a special kind of cleaning called scaling and root planing. The procedure begins with administration of a local anesthetic to reduce any discomfort. Then, a small

Learn more

Medications

Some dental procedures, such as tooth extractions and oral surgery, may call for our office to prescribe medications before or after a procedure. These medications are used to prevent or fight an infection, or to relieve any post-operative discomfort and pain. For these reasons, it is extremely important

Learn more

Your First Dental Visit

Your first dental visit promises to be a pleasant experience. Making sound decisions about your dental care and oral health is an easy thing to do with the right preparation beforehand: Make a list of questions to ask our office, so you don't forget anything on the day of your appointment. This

Learn more

Infection Control

Standards and Best Practice With all of the increased media attention on infection outbreaks such as AIDS and multi-drug resistant strains of viruses, it's no wonder people have heightened concerns about infection control during a medical procedure. Gloves, gowns and masks are required to be worn

Learn more

X-Rays

When X-rays pass through your mouth during a dental exam, more X-rays are absorbed by the denser parts (such as teeth and bone) than by soft tissues (such as cheeks and gums) before striking the film. This creates an image on the radiograph. Teeth appear lighter because fewer X-rays penetrate to reach

Learn more

Medication and Heart Disease

Certain kinds of medications can have an adverse effect on your teeth. Long ago, children exposed to tetracycline developed tooth problems, including discoloration, later in life. The medication fell out of use, however, and is not an issue today. The best precaution is to ask your family physician

Learn more

Flossing

What is flossing? Flossing is a method for removing bacteria and other debris that cannot be reached by a toothbrush. It generally entails a very thin piece of synthetic cord you insert and move up and down between the sides of two adjoining teeth. Why is flossing important? Many dentists believe

Learn more

Root Canal Therapy

Root canals are tiny passageways that branch off from beneath the top of the tooth, coursing their way vertically downward, until they reach the tip of the root. All teeth have between one and four root canals. Many tooth problems involve infections that spread to the pulp, which is the inner chamber

Learn more

Ridge Augmentation

If you lose one or more permanent teeth, an indentation may result in the gums and jawbone where the tooth used to be. When no longer holding a tooth in place, the jawbone recedes and the resulting indentation looks unnatural. Ridge augmentation is a procedure that can recapture the natural contour of

Learn more

Tobacco

Dentistry health care that works: tobacco The American Dental Association has long been a leader in the battle against tobacco-related disease, working to educate the public about the dangers inherent in tobacco use and encouraging dentists to help their patients break the cycle of addiction. The Association

Learn more

Implants

Before development of dental implants, dentures were the only alternative to replacing a missing tooth or teeth. Implants are synthetic structures that are placed in the area of the tooth normally occupied by the root. Implants are anchored to the jawbone or metal framework on the bone and act as

Learn more

Maxillofacial Surgery

When facial reconstruction, including procedures involving the oral cavity, is called for, a specialist is needed. Surgical procedures of the neck and head area are performed by a maxillofacial surgeon. Common maxillofacial procedures include denture-related procedures and jaw surgery. Jaw Correction Protruding

Learn more

Dental Emergencies

A knocked out tooth or bitten tongue can cause panic in any parent, but quick thinking and staying calm are the best ways to approach such common dental emergencies and prevent additional unnecessary damage and costly dental restoration. This includes taking measures such as application of cold compresses

Learn more

Brushing

Brushing is the most effective method for removing harmful plaque from your teeth and gums. Getting the debris off your teeth and gums in a timely manner prevents bacteria in the food you eat from turning into harmful, cavity causing acids. Most dentists agree that brushing three times a day is the

Learn more

Women and Tooth Care

Women have special needs when it comes to their oral health. That’s because the physical changes they undergo through life—menstruation, pregnancy and childbirth, breast-feeding and menopause—cause many changes in the body, some harmful to teeth and gums. Lesions and ulcers, dry sockets, as

Learn more

Flap Surgery

Your bone and gum tissue should fit snugly around your teeth like a turtleneck. When you have periodontal disease, this supporting tissue and bone is destroyed, forming "pockets" around the teeth. Over time, these pockets become deeper, providing a larger space for bacteria to thrive and wreak havoc. As

Learn more

Oral Health Products

Visit any pharmacy or the health and beauty section of a supermarket today, and you are faced with a large, and many say confusing, array of over-the-counter remedies and devices designed to help you tend to your hygiene and health-care needs. There are many high-quality products on the market today.

Learn more

Crowns and Bridges

Bridges Bridges are natural-looking dental appliances that can replace a section of missing teeth. Because they are custom-made, bridges are barely noticeable and can restore the natural contour of teeth as well as the proper bite relationship between upper and lower teeth. Bridges are sometimes

Learn more

Managing Pain

There are many methods for relieving oral pain. They include: Ice packs on the affected area. Avoiding hard candy or ice. Avoiding sleeping on your stomach. Dentists use a wide array of pain management tools, including: Anesthetics such as Novocaine. Analgesics such as aspirin

Learn more

The Preventive Program

Both natural teeth and teeth with restorations survive best in an oral environment that is clean and where the intake of harmful foods is controlled. Our program is designed to help prevent new cavities, preserve teeth that have been restored and manage periodontal disease. At the initial visit oral

Learn more

Gum Disease (Gingivitis)

Gingivitis is the medical term for early gum disease, or periodontal disease. In general, gum disease can be caused by long-term exposure to plaque, the sticky but colorless film on teeth that forms after eating or sleeping. Gum disease originates in the gums, where infections form from harmful bacteria

Learn more

Oral Cancer

Oral cancer is one of the most common cancers today and has one of the lowest survival rates, with thousands of new cases being reported each year. Fewer than half of all people diagnosed with oral cancer are ever cured. Moreover, people with many forms of cancer can develop complications—some of

Learn more

Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth are the third and final set of molars that erupt in the back corners of the upper and lower normal adult mouth. Unfortunately, most people experience problems from wisdom teeth; in most cases, this is because the teeth erupt too close to existing permanent teeth, causing crowding, improper

Learn more

Bridges

Bridges are natural-looking dental appliances that can replace a section of missing teeth. Because they are custom-made, bridges are barely noticeable and can restore the natural contour of teeth as well as the proper bite relationship between upper and lower teeth. There are several types of fixed

Learn more

Grafts

Soft tissue grafts are sometimes performed to treat gum disease, or correct other abnormalities. The procedure involves taking gum tissue from the palate or another donor source to cover an exposed root in order to even the gum line and reduce sensitivity. Periodontal procedures are available to

Learn more

Old and Unsightly Fillings

Newer kinds of fillings made from composite resins and porcelain can restore unsightly fillings; many people are surprised how natural these kinds of filling materials can make a tooth once covered by the old-fashioned silver amalgams.

Learn more

Teeth Whitening

Whitening procedures have effectively restored the smile of people with stained, dull, or discolored teeth. The darker tissue of your teeth, the dentin, can become exposed as the outer layer of enamel is worn away by the effects of aging or things like caffeine and tobacco. Food particles are naturally

Learn more

Prevention Tips for Children

Infants Infants should be seen by our office after the first six months of age, and at least by the child's first birthday. By this time, the baby's first teeth, or primary teeth, are beginning to erupt and it is a critical time to spot any problems before they become big concerns. Conditions like

Learn more

What is Tooth Decay?

Plaque is an insidious substance—a colorless, sticky film—that blankets your teeth and creates an environment in which bacteria erode tooth enamel, cause gum irritation, infection in inner structures such as pulp and the roots, and in extreme cases, tooth loss. Some of the biggest culprits causing

Learn more

Braces (Orthodontia)

Braces are applied to teeth for various reasons, including poorly aligned jaws, crooked, crowded and missing teeth, or a bad bite (also called malocclusion). Various things can cause teeth to become crooked or jaws misaligned, including thumb-sucking or a traumatic injury. Some conditions are inherited. Children

Learn more

Crowns

Crowns are synthetic caps, usually made of a material like porcelain, placed on the top of a tooth. Crowns are typically used to restore a tooth's function and appearance following a restorative procedure such as a root canal. When decay in a tooth has become so advanced that large portions of the

Learn more

Extractions

General Procedure When restoration procedures such as root canal therapy, crowns, or fillings are not enough to save a tooth, it may need to be pulled, or extracted. Tooth extraction procedures today are far less painful than ever before, thanks to powerful anesthetics and sedatives. In many cases,

Learn more

Bonding

Bonding is a process in which an enamel-like material is applied to a tooth`s surface, sculpted to an ideal shape, hardened, and then polished for an ideal smile. This procedure usually can be accomplished in a single visit. Bonding is often performed in order to fill in gaps or change the color of

Learn more

Water Picks

There is never a suitable substitute for daily brushing and flossing. While some products, including water irrigation devices (or “water picks”), may be useful for specific applications, they may not be as effective as traditional flossing in the removal of plaque. Water picks use powerful

Learn more

Glossary

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z A Amalgam - Material made from mercury and other alloy mixtures used to restore a drilled portion of a tooth. Anesthesia - Medications used to relieve pain. Anterior teeth - Front teeth. Also called incisors and cuspids. Arch - The upper or lower

Learn more

Latex Allergy

Naturally occurring latex has been linked in recent years to allergic reactions in people who use such products as latex gloves. The proteins in the latex, which can also become airborne, can cause problems in vulnerable people such as breathing problems and contact dermatitis. Some allergic reactions,

Learn more

Nutrition and Your Teeth

It has long been known that good nutrition and a well-balanced diet is one of the best defenses for your oral health. Providing your body with the right amounts of vitamins and minerals helps your teeth and gums—as well as your immune system—stay strong and ward off infection, decay and disease. Harmful

Learn more

Plaque

Plaque is a film of bacteria that forms on your teeth and gums after eating foods that produce acids. These foods may include carbohydrates (starches and sugars), such as candy and cookies, and starchy foods such as bread, crackers, and cereal. Tooth decay, commonly known as cavities, occurs when

Learn more

Excessive or Uneven Gums

Many people inherit the problem of excessive or uneven gums. An aesthetic surgical procedure called a gum lift can be used to correct this problem.

Learn more

What is Bruxism?

Teeth grinding, also called bruxism, is often viewed as a harmless, though annoying, habit. Some people develop bruxism from an inability to deal with stress or anxiety. However, teeth grinding can literally transform your bite relationship and worse, severely damage your teeth and jaws over long

Learn more

Bleaching

Bleaching and non-bleaching products are the two basic kinds of whitening products available today. Non-bleaching products normally use abrasives or chemicals and only remove surface stains on teeth. Bleaching products work with a chemical called peroxide and can brighten your teeth several shades. Another

Learn more

General Dentistry

The first line of defense against oral health problems In general dentistry, the dentist is the primary care provider for patients of all ages and is responsible for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of a wide variety of conditions, disorders and diseases affecting the teeth, gums and maxillofacial

Learn more

Emergency Care

A knocked out tooth or bitten tongue can cause panic in any parent, but quick thinking and staying calm are the best ways to approach such common dental emergencies and prevent additional unnecessary damage and costly dental restoration. This includes taking measures such as application of cold compresses

Learn more

Periodontal Exams

Periodontal exams are vital in the maintenance of your oral health as they are used to assess the health of your gums and teeth. They can help your dentist diagnose gum diseases, gingivitis and periodontitis. These exams can also reveal receding gums, exposed roots, tooth grinding and other problems,

Learn more

Lacerations and Cuts

Any kind of cut to your face and the delicate soft tissues inside your mouth should be addressed immediately in order to prevent further tissue damage and infection. If a traumatic injury involves a broken facial bone such as the jaw, nose, chin or cheek, maxillofacial surgery may be required. With

Learn more

Sensitive Teeth

If you wince with pain after sipping a hot cup of coffee or chewing a piece of ice, chances are that you suffer from "dentin hypersensitivity," or more commonly, sensitive teeth. Hot and cold temperature changes cause your teeth to expand and contract. Over time, your teeth can develop microscopic

Learn more

Mouth Rinses

The Food and Drug Administration classifies mouth rinses into two categories - therapeutic and cosmetic. In general, therapeutic rinses with fluoride have been shown to actually fight cavities, plaque and gingivitis. On the other hand, cosmetic rinses merely treat breath odor, reduce bacteria and/or

Learn more

Choosing a Toothbrush

Never before has there been such a dizzying array of toothbrushes on the market. Consumers are inundated with new designs, materials, attachments, and colors. Whatever toothbrush design you choose, the most important thing is that you use the toothbrush at least 2-3 times a day. Moreover, how long you

Learn more

Bad Breath (halitosis)

An estimated sixty-five percent of Americans have bad breath. Over forty-million Americans have "chronic halitosis," which is persistent bad breath. Ninety percent of all halitosis is of oral, not systemic, origin. Americans spend more than $1 billion a year on over the counter halitosis products,

Learn more

Jaw/TMJ

People who grind their teeth can sometimes develop a serious problem with their jaw, which left untreated, can adversely affect the teeth, gums and bone structures of the mouth. One of the most common jaw disorders is related to a problem with the temporomandibular joint, the joint that connects your

Learn more

Seniors and Oral Health

More and more people are avoiding the need for dentures as they grow older, going against the notion that false teeth are a normal part of growing older. In fact, there's usually no reason for you NOT to keep your teeth your entire life, providing you maintain a healthy balanced diet and practice

Learn more

Dry Mouth

Saliva is one of your body's natural defenses against plaque because it acts to rinse your mouth of cavity-causing bacteria and other harmful materials. Dry mouth (also called Xerostomia) is a fairly common condition that is caused by diminished saliva production. People with medical conditions, such

Learn more

Fluorosis

Fluorosis is a condition in which your body has been exposed to too much fluoride. In normal doses (typically found in a safe drinking water system and an ADA-approved toothpaste), fluoride is a healthy compound that promotes strong teeth, which has the ability to fight cavities and other problems. But

Learn more

Types of Floss

Dental floss comes in a variety of colors, materials and even flavors. Waxed varieties slide through the teeth, allowing people with extremely tight spaces to floss more easily. Popular flavors of floss include wintergreen and cinnamon. Waxed floss does tend to fray more than unwaxed floss. A type

Learn more

Chipped, Cracked, and Worn Teeth

Special thin laminates, called veneers, can often be used to correct discolored, worn down, cracked and chipped teeth. Veneers can also be used to close unsightly gaps between teeth. Stronger types of veneers made of porcelain, also called composite veneers, typically last longer because they are bonded

Learn more

Mouth Guards

Anyone who participates in a sport that carries a significant risk of injury should wear a mouth protector. Sports like basketball, baseball, gymnastics, and volleyball all pose risks to your gum tissues, as well as your teeth. We usually think of football and hockey as the most dangerous to the teeth,

Learn more

Diabetes

People living with diabetes are vulnerable to a host of systemic problems in their entire body. Unfortunately, the mouth and teeth are not immune from such problems, and many diabetics with oral problems go undiagnosed until conditions become advanced. Infections and other problems such as receding

Learn more

Jaw Disorders

People who grind their teeth can sometimes develop a serious problem with their jaw, which left untreated, can adversely affect the teeth, gums and bone structures of the mouth. One of the most common jaw disorders is related to a problem with the temporomandibular joint, the joint that connects your

Learn more

Anesthesia

Dentistry has advanced to the point in which pain is almost a thing of the past. Powerful pain-killing medications known as anesthetics not only help a patient avoid discomfort during a procedure, but post-operatively as well. Some patients, especially children, may require higher doses of anesthetic

Learn more

Sealants

The pits and grooves of your teeth are prime areas for opportunistic decay. Even regular brushing sometimes misses some of these intricate structures on the chewing surfaces of your teeth. Enter sealants, which are thin coatings applied to the chewing surfaces designed to prevent the intrusion of

Learn more

Fluoride Facts

For decades, fluoride has been held in high regard by the dental community as an important mineral that is absorbed into and strengthens tooth enamel, thereby helping to prevent decay of tooth structures. In nearly every U.S. community, public drinking supplies are supplemented with sodium fluoride

Learn more

Cavities and Tooth Decay

What Is Tooth Decay? Tooth decay is caused by a variety of things; in medical terms, cavities are called caries, which are caused by long-term destructive forces acting on tooth structures such as enamel and the tooth's inner dentin material. These destructive forces include frequent exposure to

Learn more

Missing Teeth

Fixed bridges and implants are often used to replace missing teeth and to correct some kinds of bite problems. Crowns and bridges are the most effective procedure for replacing missing teeth or bite problems.

Learn more

Dentures

A denture is a removable replacement for missing teeth and adjacent tissues. It is made of acrylic resin, sometimes in combination with various metals. Types of dentures Complete dentures replace all the teeth, while a partial denture fills in the spaces created by missing teeth and prevents

Learn more

Air Abrasion

Many people associate the high-pitched whirring of a dental drill with pain. Just the sound alone can make many people wince. A relatively new technique called air abrasion uses powerful particles of aluminum oxide to remove debris and decay. The most exciting thing for patients is that air abrasion

Learn more

Fluoride

For decades, fluoride has been held in high regard by the dental community as an important mineral that strengthens tooth enamel, which thereby helps to prevent decay of tooth structures. Water fluoridation is endorsed by nearly every major health and safety-related organization in the world. Communities

Learn more

Canker/Cold Sores

People sometimes confuse canker sores and cold sores, but they are completely unrelated. Both can be painful, but knowing the differences can help you keep them in check. A canker sore is typically one that occurs on the delicate tissues inside your mouth. It is usually light-colored at its base and

Learn more

Age and Oral Health

Oral changes with age Is tooth loss inevitable in your later years? How much should adults be concerned about cavities? Here you will find helpful answers to some frequently asked questions about oral health questions you may have as you get older. National survey reveals baby boomers miss

Learn more

Denture Care

Dentures today are made from very advanced materials designed to give you a natural appearance. However, keep in mind that just like your teeth, dentures should be cared for with the same diligence. This means daily brushing and regular visits to your dentist. Regular visits to your dentist are

Learn more

Bulimia Nervosa

People with eating disorders can suffer from oral health problems as well. This is because many of the behaviors associated with anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa—such as binge eating, self-induced vomiting, and use of diuretics or laxatives—cause changes in the mouth. For example, repeated

Learn more

Abscessed Tooth

Treatment of an abscessed tooth An abscessed tooth is a pocket of pus, usually caused by some kind of infection and the spread of bacteria from the root of the tooth to the tissue just below or near the tooth. In general, a tooth that has become abscessed is one whose underlying pulp (the tooth's

Learn more

How to Keep Up With Your Oral Health

What does good oral hygiene mean to you: Flashing a pearly-white smile? Having fresh smelling breath? Feeling that squeaky-clean sensation all around your teeth and tongue? All of these are important indicators about the state of your oral health — and they're often the first thing people notice when they meet you.

Learn more

Want to schedule
an appointment?