Dental News

What Age Should Your Child See a Spring Branch Pediatric Dentist

What Age Should Your Child See a Spring Branch Pediatric Dentist

Oral health is something that parents should emphasize while their children are still young. Prioritizing it early in life can lead to fewer dental problems in the years to come. So at what age should you bring your child to see a Spring Branch pediatric dentist for the first time? Read on to find out when and why it is so essential that your child see a Houston pediatric dentist at that stage in their life.

When Should a Child First Visit Spring Branch Pediatric Dentist?

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, a child should be taken to their first visit to a Houston pediatric dentist at no later than 12 months or 1 year old. Beyond having your child’s first dental exam, a big part of why it should be done at such an early age is to teach your child to become comfortable in the dentist’s office. Early familiarization with your Spring Branch pediatric dentist will teach your child to not fear visits to the dentist, which in turn should lead to them being more willing to make appointments when they become older. Such habits will mean dental problems are detected earlier and treatment is made easier and potentially less expensive. However, your child’s first visit to the dentist is also a major milestone for you.

What Can Parents Learn From Their Spring Branch Pediatric Dentist?

Just as the first visit to the Houston pediatric dentist can be educational to your child, you will also be doing a lot of learning during that appointment. As part of our dedication to providing the best possible dental care to your family, our team at Smile 4 Texas will teach you how to manage your child’s dental health. Topics that this can cover will include but are not limited to the following:

  • Teething
  • Pacifier habits
  • Thumb and finger-sucking habits
  • Mouth cleaning
  • Nutritional advice and infant feeding practices
  • Baby bottle tooth decay

Beyond this, we can also talk to you about when to schedule future visits to monitor and maintain your child’s dental health.

Let Our Spring Branch Pediatric Dentist Lay The Foundation for Your Child’s Dental Health

At Smile 4 Texas, your family’s oral health is our top priority. We strive to provide your family with the very best dental experience possible and make sure that all our patients have healthy and beautiful smiles. As soon as you feel that your child is ready, schedule an appointment with our Spring Branch pediatric dentist!

What Is a Dental Crown From a Spring Branch General Dentist?

What Is a Dental Crown From a Spring Branch General Dentist?

Your teeth can get damaged over time for a number of reasons and cause severe discomfort. Cavities and oral injuries can be painful and disrupt your daily life. You don’t have to endure the pain, as we offer the best dental solutions at Smile 4 Texas. Our Spring branch general dentist specializes in dental crowns to address a range of oral problems. Dental crowns are an effective way of restoring a tooth’s original size, shape, and appearance. If you’re considering a Spring Branch dental crown, here are some things you should know.

Types of Dental Crowns

A dental crown is a type of cap used to protect teeth. They are placed over the original teeth to improve appearance and function. There are several dental crown options you can get from a Houston general dentist. Metal crowns usually contain gold and chromium. They are made to withstand wear and tear, so they can last for long periods of time. Ceramic and porcelain crowns are popular since they look closest to natural teeth. They are best suited for patients with metal allergies.  

Who Is a Dental Crown For?

Our Spring Branch general dentist will conduct a thorough evaluation to make sure that a dental crown is right for you. For milder cases, a dental filling will be enough to cover the damaged part of the tooth. Smile 4 Texas is committed to preserving our patients’ original teeth as much as possible. We recommend a Spring Branch dental crown to the following:

  • Patients with tooth decay. Cavities develop due to poor oral hygiene. They also cause teeth to be permanently damaged. To save a decayed tooth, we may recommend a dental crown. 
  • Patients with oral injuries. A tooth fracture occurs as a result of physical trauma from an accident. The replacement crown prevents any further injuries. It protects the tooth and restores its appearance.
  • Patients with weakened teeth. Genetics and old age may result in bad teeth. Dental crowns keep teeth safe from chips and crumbling. Because they are more permanent, you can have longer-lasting protection.

What Happens During a Dental Crown Procedure

During your first visit for a dental crown procedure, our Spring Branch family dentist will take X-rays and impressions of your tooth. They will treat any signs that could cause infection. The damaged part of the tooth is shaven down to make room for the dental cap. Your dentist will cover your tooth with a temporary dental crown to protect it. The dental laboratory will then start working on your permanent crown. During your next visit, your dentist will fit your permanent crown and cement it into place. Our clinic will make sure to educate you on proper dental crown care to avoid complications.

Schedule an Appointment With Our Spring Branch General Dentist

Smile 4 Texas is committed to providing your family with a comfortable dental experience. We help you achieve a healthy and beautiful smile through our quality dental services. Schedule an appointment with our Spring Branch general dentist today! We look forward to serving you.

What Causes Gum Disease and How a Spring Branch General Dentist Can Cure It

What Causes Gum Disease and How a Spring Branch General Dentist Can Cure It

Gum disease is a serious disease that could lead to tooth loss. The good news is that it’s treatable. Also called periodontitis, gum disease occurs when bacteria grow inside the mouth, leading to tissue damage. Poor oral hygiene is a leading cause of gum disease. If you don’t brush and floss regularly, plaque starts to build up on the teeth. This plaque then hardens into tartar, which can only be removed professionally by a Spring Branch general dentist. So when do you know if it’s time to see a dentist? Read on to find out.

Symptoms of Gum Disease

The first indicator of periodontitis is red, swollen gums. Inflammation starts across the gum line and spreads inside the mouth. Your gum feels tender and may even be painful. You may also notice your gum line receding and separating from the teeth. Since gum disease is caused by bacteria, a typical symptom is bad breath. Hardened tartar may cause a foul smell. Your teeth may also feel extra sensitive, especially when drinking cold beverages. A serious complication of gum disease is wiggling or loose teeth. This means that the disease has spread to your bones.

Who Is At-Risk for Gum Disease?

A Houston dentist will tell you that patients with bad oral habits are the most prone to periodontitis. Smokers may also find it harder to recover from gingivitis, which is the condition that could lead to gum disease. Certain medical conditions also increase the risk of this disease. Cancer, HIV, and diabetes all affect the immune system, making tissue repair harder and infection more likely. Hormonal changes, such as menopause and puberty, make gums more sensitive. Finally, some medication may disrupt saliva production and cause abnormal tissue growth.

How to Treat Gum Disease

Our Spring Branch family dentist always tells our patients that preventing gum disease is better than treating it. However, if the condition has developed, Smile 4 Texas will be there for you to provide you with the best dental care. We are more than happy to give you a personalized experience in your treatment journey. Our Spring Branch general dentist may recommend one or more of the following below.

  • Deep Cleaning. Our dentist will go under the gum line and use special instruments to make sure all the damaged tissue is treated.
  • Medication. You may be prescribed an antibiotic gel or an enzyme suppressant to treat the gums.
  • Surgery. For severe cases, surgery may be the only option. Gum graft surgery and flap surgery seek to repair the gum line and bone.

Contact Our Spring Branch General Dentist to Treat Gum Disease

Smile 4 Texas offers a wide range of dental services to suit our patients’ needs. We believe in providing the best dental experience. We are experienced in treating patients of all ages, even young children. If you have any of the symptoms of periodontitis above, don’t wait any longer. Schedule an appointment with our Spring Branch general dentist so you can be on your way to excellent oral health.

Dental Braces For the Family at Smile 4 Texas

Dental Braces For the Family at Smile 4 Texas

Dental braces continue to evolve over the decades to make dental correction a more effective and comfortable process. Smiles 4 Texas helps our patients achieve straighter, more beautiful smiles to make them feel more confident. Read on to know more about dental braces from a qualified Spring branch family dentist.

Who Can Benefit From Dental Braces?

Patients with misaligned or crooked teeth can benefit from our dental services. Overcrowding and gapped teeth are common issues that can be corrected with braces. Our clinic also improves bites by correcting underbites and overbites. Braces are not just for cosmetic reasons. They also ensure better oral health by preventing bacteria in gaps and helping a patient chew more properly. 

Types of Braces

Our Spring Branch family dentist offers different types of braces to correct a wide range of dental issues. Below are the treatment options that our Houston general dentist will recommend depending on your needs.

  • Metal braces: These are traditional braces that have been around the longest. Metal braces are an inexpensive yet effective way of improving your teeth. They have the strongest pull and are recommended for patients with more serious dental issues.
  • Ceramic braces: Some patients prefer ceramic braces because they match the color of their teeth. These types of braces stand out less, but they are slightly more expensive. Ceramic braces are also very effective but aren’t as strong as metal braces. This is why they are ideal for more moderate cases.
  • Invisalign: Considered a breakthrough in modern orthodontics, these clear braces are for patients with gapped and crooked teeth. Invisalign is recommended for milder cases. They can be removed during the day so patients can go about with no major changes to their appearance.

What Can I Expect From My Treatment?

Each patient may have a different experience, which is why our Spring Branch general dentist will make a thorough evaluation of your condition. It is important to come in for your monthly visits until you finish your treatment.

  • Duration of treatment. The typical length of treatment is from 18 to 24 months. The exact duration will depend on the severity of your condition. This is a small amount of time compared to the lifetime of beautiful smiles you will have.
  • Monthly visits. You will be required to come in at least once every month. During your visits, our Spring Branch Family Dentist will make adjustments to keep your progress consistent. Our dentist may also tighten some wires and reposition brackets.
  • Mild discomfort. While you are sitting on the dentist’s chair, you will not feel any pain. A few hours after your adjustment, you will start to feel a slight pressure. This means the braces are working and your teeth are being pulled into alignment.

Contact Our Spring Branch Family Dentist

Smile 4 Texas aims to give your family the best dental experience possible. Whether you come in for diagnostics or more involved treatments, we make sure to treat you with utmost courtesy and professionalism. If you are interested in getting dental braces, call us today! Our skilled and highly trained dental team is ready to serve you.

How Does Dental Insurance Work?

How Does Dental Insurance Work?

Regular dental visits are an important facet of your overall health, as routine cleanings with our Spring Branch dentist not only keep your teeth healthy, but they also identify potential problems early before they require invasive procedures to correct. Should a visit to our Spring Branch family dentist uncover the presence of cavities or other issues that require intervention, you're likely wondering if your dental insurance plan will cover the cost of treatment. Here, we’ll explain how dental insurance works and how you can decide which plan may be right for you.

What is Dental Insurance?

Dental insurance is a way to lower the cost of treatment with our Spring Branch family dentist that you would otherwise pay without dental insurance. There are two types of dental insurance: HMO and PPO dental insurance. 

HMO Dental Insurance

HMO plans require you to visit a dentist that is in the provider’s network in order to receive benefits. This dentist will become your primary dentist, meaning all routine care and referrals must originate from this dental practice. 

PPO Dental Insurance

PPO dental insurance, on the other hand, allows you to choose from a wider variety of dentists in your area in order to receive coverage for dental treatment. You may even be able to see a dentist that is out of network if you’re willing to pay a bit more. This is especially beneficial for patients who have already established a relationship with our Spring Branch dentist, but have a change in policy for whatever reason. Thankfully, Smile 4 Texas accepts most major PPO dental insurance plans and can work with you if not.

What Does Dental Insurance Cover?

If you have PPO dental insurance, what is covered at our Spring Branch family dentist depends in large part upon your specific plan. PPO dental insurance is divided into three types of coverage: preventative, restorative, and orthodontic care, each of which is discussed in more detail below.

Preventative Care

This refers to regular dental cleanings with our Houston dentist every six months, as well as annual x-rays. Most plans cover these entirely, meaning you pay nothing out of pocket. Some plans even include fluoride treatments or sealants that prevent cavities and other issues that may lead to expensive treatments.

Restorative Care

If our Spring Branch dentist finds a cavity or sees the need for a root canal, crown, bridge, or other treatment that is designed to correct an existing issue, this is known as restorative care. Most PPO dental insurance plans cover part of these expenses, but typically not all. 

Orthodontic Care

Some plans will include coverage for malocclusion issues that require braces or Invisalign treatments, so it’s wise to include this type of coverage when shopping for dental insurance if you suspect someone in your family will require orthodontic treatment.

Smile 4 Texas Accepts Most Major Insurance!

We accept the most popular insurance companies available as well as Medicare/Medicaid recipients. We can also work with you to provide options to make sure you get the smile you want if your coverage is not as comprehensive as you had hoped. It’s also important to note that you renew your dental plan each year, so be sure to take advantage of your coverage before the year ends, as it can cover some much-needed dental work. Call us today to schedule an appointment with our Spring Branch family dentist and learn what type of coverage your plan provides!