Dental Benefits - Use It Or Lose It!

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With the end of the year approaching, if you need to make a visit to your dentist, and you have dental insurance, it is important that you not put it off. Taking advantage of your dental coverage before the year ends is practical, because, not only do you get immediate benefits, but you also get to save money.

With most dental insurance companies, you are given a set amount of money that can be use every year. While you are not mandated to use your yearly maximum, if you do not use the money that year, it does not roll over, and anything unused is lost.

Deductibles can increase from year to year, and this means that your copay will be higher. It is best to get the dental services that you need while you can which will make your out-of-pocket expenses more affordable than it will be if your copay was to increase.

It is important to get treated immediately when it comes to dental work. Cavities left untreated can lead to severe headaches and infections if not tended to right away. Gum diseases can quickly spread to other parts of the mouth and can cause serious health problems that can affect your entire body.

By using all of your yearly dental benefits, you are ensuring that your oral health is being maintained by doing everything you can to keep it clean and free from infections and possible viruses. With regular visits to your dentists you learn of the ways you can improve your oral health. Overall, having regular dental visits will help decrease the need for emergency procedures that could end up being very expensive.

 

An Interview with Dr. Livingstone, The Holistic Dentist

Posted by DrLivingstone | Filed under , , , ,

 

Q: What are some concerns regarding mercury fillings?

A: First, mercury fillings are not stable and react to hot or cold temperatures. So, every time you drink something hot, the filling will expand and every time you drink something cold, the filling will contract. This can eventually crack the enamel of the tooth. In addition, when you drink a hot beverage, mercury can vaporize and this material is ingested. The body changes mercury from a non-toxic to a toxic substance in the cellular membrane to eliminate it from the body.

 

Q: How can one determine if they have mercury toxicity from their fillings?

A: Some people process mercury effectively and others don’t process it well at all. Hair, urine and blood analysis can be checked for toxicity. If mercury is passed through the urine and not stored in the hair, then we know that individual can process mercury. If we find mercury in a hair sample, then we know they are not eliminating it.

 

Q: Should individuals with mercury fillings have them removed?

A: That is up to the individual, but in my opinion mercury doesn’t belong in the human body. It may depend on how many mercury fillings they have, however. If a mercury filling needs to be replaced because of deterioration, it should be replaced with another material.

 

Q: What other materials are options for dentists to use besides mercury fillings?

A: There are numerous bonded materials that dentists can use to fill cavities. However, they are harder to work with, about 20-40% more expensive and typically insurance does not cover these types of materials. One type is crushed quartz and an epoxy binder which is the same color as your teeth and doesn’t expand or contract or release toxins into the body.

 

Q: What are the symptoms of mercury toxicity?

A: Some of the symptoms include a metallic taste in your mouth, bad taste after eating, lethargy, frequent headaches, and fever. However, be aware that there are probably 50 or 60 symptoms that a person may exhibit. ON THE SUBJECT OF PERIODONTAL DISEASE

 

Q: Is it normal for your gums to bleed while flossing or brushing your teeth?

A: No, this is not normal and it typically signals gum disease. This can result in loss of bone support around your teeth and the formation of pus pockets. It may also be a cause of bad breath.

 

Q: What can I do to stop my gums from bleeding?

A: Some initial things to do would be to use a baking soda type toothpaste and/or rinse with a warm salt-water solution. The salt content will kill any bacteria by changing the pH of the mouth. Have your dentist check for healthy gum attachment to your jaw. There should be no more than 2-3 mm pockets; otherwise the bone may be dissolving from around the teeth. The next step would be a cleaning under the gum with a special solution that your dentist would perform. Your dentist will flush the pockets, remove any tartar and bacteria and the gums should tighten up.

 

Q: Is this a hereditary problem?

A: It can be genetic. However, sometimes it happens in smokers or other individuals who are prone to a fast buildup of tartar.

 

Q: What else can be done to prevent this from happening?

A: Some individuals can benefit from taking certain supplements as described below:

 

Vitamin C. 4-6 g/day (but cut back if develop diarrhea)

Coenzyme Q10: 30 mg dose, open the capsule and sprinkle half in mouth and rub on gums. Take the rest internally.

Vitamin E: 400 IU/day

Garlic: 6-8 capsules/day

Flossing is essential and one can benefit from having more frequent cleanings performed by your dentist. If you have tartar buildup, you might benefit from getting your teeth cleaned every 3-4 months.

 

Dr. Thomas Livingstone

Canaan Gentle Dental Care

Canaan, CT 06018

(860) 824-0751

Porcelain Veneers

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Dental veneers are used as a form of cosmetic dentistry to correct tooth enamel that is worn, discolored, chipped or cracked. They are also used to correct uneven tooth spacing. While recreating beautiful, bright smiles, they also protect the surface of the already damaged teeth which may eliminate the need for further treatments.


Veneers are made with different materials, including composite resin and porcelain. Porcelain veneers has been known to be used for the more serious cases of damaged teeth. these veneers has been proven to last up to 16-20 years.

Porcelain veneers  can be made as thin as a contact lens. They are more stain resistant than resin veneers, and are better able to  and are better at mimicking the light properties of natural teeth. Porcelain veneers are also very safe for sensitive patients since there is no drilling and no removal of the tooth structure - there is no pain involved!!

So, come on in and schedule a consultation with us at Livingstone Dental Excellence, and we will work with you to find the best solutions

 

Spring Into A New Smile!!!

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Spring is upon us, and just as it symbolizes new life, it may also be time to to consider bringing new life to your smile. 

Dr. Livingstone is dedicated to using the latest in advanced technology to create and restore beautiful healthy smiles! Including in the services offered are Lumineers, Dental Implants, Clear Correct Teeth Straightening and Zoom teeth whitening.

 

Call our office today to learn more on how we can help you create beautiful smiles this spring!

TMJ Disorder

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Temporomandibular joints (TMJ) connect your jawbone to your skull. They are located at either sides of the head, near the ears. These joints are essential in speaking, eating and the making of facial expression. TMJ disorder occurs when there is a disruption in the proper function of these joints.

In some cases, the causes of TMJ disorder can be clear. A blow or other impact to the joint can result in dislocation of the TMJ. Another cause is arthiritis which can cause inflammation of the joints, and also swelling of the surrounding tissues. Having a misaligned bite make everyday jaw movements, like chewing, take a toll on the TMJ. This can eventually cause a strain on the surrounding muscles. Many people habitually clench and grind their teeth.This places extreme pressure on the joints , sometimes to the point where there can be a dislocation of the joint. 

The symptoms of TMJ disorders will vary from person to person, depending on the cause of their TMJ disorder. For many, jaw joint pain is the most common. Many experience a popping, clicking sound when they yawn or chew. Many experience an aching pain in and around the ear because the TMJ is located near the ear. Headaches tend to occur when the muscles around the TMJ get strained. With the people who ususally clench and grind their teeth, there is usually tooth aches and pain in the cheeks.

Come in today and together we will find the best treatments for you.

 

 

“Take the “OUCH” Out of Cold Drinks & Ice Cream Instantly & Guaranteed.”

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Do you say “no thanks” when someone offers you a glass of iced tea or lemonade? And skip the sundae when you take the kids for ice cream? All because your teeth just hurt too much when they encounter something cold? If so, you’re not alone.

Cold sensitivity like that is a complaint dentists hear frequently. Even if the pain lasts just a moment it makes it hard to enjoy the foods and drinks you love.
A Simple Explanation
There may be a simple reason for the pain you feel (in otherwise healthy teeth) when you eat or drink something cold — or even go out into the cold air.

The crown of your tooth (the part you see) is covered in nice hard enamel — but the root doesn’t enjoy that kind of protection. In fact, it’s covered with a substance called “cementum.” The cementum is considerably softer than enamel, and can become quite permeable as we age. A healthy tooth has nerves which run from the outer cementum directly to the inner tooth pulp.  

As long as your gums are at the proper level they cover the cementum. But when gums recede — as a result of improper brushing, or periodontal (gum) disease — the cementum is left unprotected. So when you eat or drink something cold — OUCH.

Instant Relief
Fortunately, today there’s a simple way to get instant relief — a special protective invisible bonding liquid that we can apply to the root to protect your cementum and Elimin ate the tooth’s sensitivity. Although it doesn’t work for everyone the vast majority of people are delighted to find they can go back to enjoying all the frozen desserts and ice-cold drinks they’ve been avoiding.

Guaranteed Results
If you’d like to try this treatment for oral sensitivity, simply tell your Canaan CT Dentist here at Livingstone Dental Excellence during your next visit, or give us a call.

We’ll apply it, then test to see if it’s worked for you. If it has, you can say good-bye to the ouch and hello to ice cream, icy cold drinks and other treats you’ve been missing.  If it hasn’t, there’s No Charge for the treatment.

Stop putting up with the pain. Give us a call or come in and speak with our team today.

 

'Uncover a Beautiful Smile!!"

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A friend of mine told me the other day about an elementary school he’d been to where every classroom boasted a big, bold sign that said “If you see someone without a smile, give them one of yours.”

That strikes me as a terrific thought and a great message to give our kids.

But it also made me think about all the people who’d love to smile – really grin from ear to ear – but can’t bring themselves to do it because they’re ashamed of the way their smile looks.

A lot of these people suffer silently with an easily correctable condition we dentists call “excessive gingival display” – a phrase that simply means their gums come down too far. That makes their teeth look too small (although they actually aren’t) and gives them what some people call a “gummy” or “horsy” smile.

In some cases the gums come down too far on all the person’s teeth. In others only one or a few teeth are affected. In either case it makes their smile a lot less attractive – even if their teeth are healthy, even and white. And it leaves them self conscious, uncomfortable and afraid to smile like they really mean it.


A Common Problem

You see, ideally when a person smiles, his or her gums are on the same level as their upper lip – with the result that they barely show. People with gummy smiles, though, show a substantial amount of gum.

There are lots of reasons why this can happen. One of the most common is that when people’s adult teeth came through, their gums didn’t recede properly. It’s a condition dentists call “altered passive eruption” and it’s a lot more common than you might think.


With a Simple Solution

In the past, people simply lived with the condition and the emotional pain it caused them. They tried to remember not to smile, or not to smile too broadly. Or they hid their smiles behind their hand rather than sharing them with their friends and family.

Today, though, we have a number of ways of correcting the problem by doing what’s called a “gum lift.”

Depending on individual circumstances (each case if different) we may even be able to correct gummy smile without conventional surgery, by using a beam of light or even a radio wave.

Also called ‘crown lengthening,” these simple procedures let us uncover the underlying teeth, smooth out the gum line and create a much more pleasing smile.

Most of the time we can correct a gummy smile in a single office visit. Discomfort is minimal and recovery is surprisingly quick.


A Perfect Smile in Minutes

In fact, with today’s technology, people can often get the smile they’ve dreamed of in a matter of minutes – and enjoy it forever. So it’s no surprise that gum lifts have become increasingly popular.

In the words of Dr. Nicholas Davis, President of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, “Now people want it to be perfect – a smile that’s straight, bright and white with a minimum of pink.”

If you’re unhappy with how much gum your smile shows, just ask. Here at Livingstone Dental Excellence we'll fill you in on how much today’s techniques can help.

And, if you have a friend or loved one who’s self conscious about their gummy smile, don’t forget to tell them how easy it is to correct the problem – and how amazing the results can be.

 

 

 

 

Mercury Fillings and Mercury Toxicity

Posted by DrLivingstone | Filed under , , ,

(interview with Dr Thomas Livingstone, The Holistic Dentist)

 

 

Q: What are some concerns regarding mercury fillings?

A: First, mercury fillings are not stable and react to hot or cold temperatures. So, every time you drink something hot, the filling will expand and every time you drink something cold, the filling will contract. This can eventually crack the enamel of the tooth. In addition, when you drink a hot beverage, mercury can vaporize and this material is ingested. The body changes mercury from a non-toxic to a toxic substance in the cellular membrane to eliminate it from the body.

Q: How can one determine if they have mercury toxicity from their fillings?

A: Some people process mercury effectively and others don’t process it well at all. Hair, urine and blood analysis can be checked for toxicity. If mercury is passed through the urine and not stored in the hair, then we know that individual can process mercury. If we find mercury in a hair sample, then we know they are not eliminating it.

Q: Should individuals with mercury fillings have them removed?

A: That is up to the individual, but in my opinion mercury doesn’t belong in the human body. It may depend on how many mercury fillings they have, however. If a mercury filling needs to be replaced because of deterioration, it should be replaced with another material.

Q: What other materials are options for dentists to use besides mercury fillings?

A: There are numerous bonded materials that dentists can use to fill cavities. However, they are harder to work with, about 20-40% more expensive and typically insurance does not cover these types of materials. One type is crushed quartz and an epoxy binder which is the same color as your teeth and doesn’t expand or contract or release toxins into the body.

Q: What are the symptoms of mercury toxicity?

A: Some of the symptoms include a metallic taste in your mouth, bad taste after eating, lethargy, frequent headaches, and fever. However, be aware that there are probably 50 or 60 symptoms that a person may exhibit.

 

 

 

Dr. Thomas Livingstone

Canaan Gentle Dental Care

Canaan, CT 06018

(860) 824-0751

 

Financing Your Smile With CareCredit

Posted by DrLivingstone | Filed under , , ,

The biggest hindrance to many people getting the dental care they need is the financial obligation involved. Many  do not have insurance to cover most dental procedures and are faced with out of pocket expenses that are just too much for them.


CareCredit may be the answer to their problems. It is a personal line of credit to be used solely for healthcare services. CareCredit various monthly plans where the user will have a certain length of time to pay for their procedure. instead of having to come up with the full payment at the time of treatment.
However, CareCredit is not for everyone. It is a credit card, and is approval is based on past credit history from the applicant(s). Many doctors offer CareCredit to their patients because they want to continue to offer the best care necessary. Here at Livingstone Dental Excellence, your Canaan CT Dentist offer CareCredit as one of the available finance options as he is very sensitive to the fact that in today's changing economy, many people have differnet financial obligations and being inable to pay for treatment in full will deter many from getting the necessary care required.

Come in or call us to discuss all fincial options whcih may be available to you!!!!

Home Whitening: Convenient, Inexpensive, Disappointing

Posted by DrLivingstone | Filed under , , ,

(Original article found in Dr Livingstone's Patient Newsletter)

 

It's easy to use. The price is low. But the effect of an over-the-counter (OTC) whitening pen may not be what you expected.

OTC ads for tooth whitening pens, strips and gels lure you in with dramatic pictures and convincing results, but they don't tell you the whole story, such as—Image

The condition of your teeth, your genetics and your lifestyle affect your results. The ad says your teeth will be four shades whiter in one week, but you may not see a difference for six weeks, and it may be only 1 shade lighter.

You must follow directions. Some people struggle maintaining a strict regimen. If you skip a treatment now and then, you will not see a difference in whiteness in an even longer period of time.Image

You should not use an OTC whitening product if you have braces, composite (white) fillings, crowns, bridges, dentures, and the like. A whitening product affects only natural tooth enamel; thus, you could end up with teeth of different colors. If you just had a crown placed, we would need to replace it with a crown that matched the shade of your whitened teeth. That inexpensive OTC whitener just cost you a whole lot more money.

You should not whiten your teeth if you have periodontal disease, cavities or thin tooth enamel. Whitening products soften tooth enamel. Your teeth need strong enamel to protect them from decay.

Should you whiten your teeth if you are pregnant? Please consult with your physician or obstetrican.

OTC whitening doesn't take the place of professional whitening treatments. Your teeth will not be dazzling white with one OTC treatment.

If you want a whitening treatment that can last up to one year, call and schedule an appointment. We'll gladly discuss your whitening goals with you!