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Posts for: June, 2019

5WaystoaBeautifulWeddingDaySmile

Since the early Roman times, couples have prized the month of June as the most favorable time to exchange their marriage vows. If you and your betrothed are planning a June wedding this season, you no doubt want everything to be beautiful. That would include your smile—and with the appropriate techniques we can help you make it as bright and attractive as possible.

Here are 5 ways to a more attractive wedding day smile.

Dental Cleaning and Teeth Whitening. A routine dental cleaning right before the ceremony can remove stains and dental plaque that dull your teeth's appearance. For an added level of brightness, we can also whiten your teeth in time for your big day.

Repairing defects with bonding. Do you have a chipped tooth, or a broken or discolored filling? We may be able to repair minor defects like these in a single visit by bonding lifelike dental materials directly to the tooth. We color-match and sculpt these materials so that they blend seamlessly with your natural teeth.

Advanced enhancements. In whatever ways your teeth may be flawed, there are dental solutions to transform your smile. We can correct minor to moderate chips, stains or slight gaps with porcelain veneers that cover the teeth's visible surface. We can cap a viable but unsightly tooth with a life-like crown. Missing teeth? A fixed bridge or dental implants could restore them like new.

Plastic gum surgery. Teeth may be the stars of your smile, but your gums are the supporting cast. Smiles with too much of the gums showing can be corrected through various techniques, including periodontal plastic surgery that reshapes the gums and can help the teeth appear more prominent.

Orthodontics. The original "smile transformer," braces and other orthodontic methods move misaligned teeth to better positions. Not only can orthodontic treatment result in a more attractive appearance, it can improve overall dental health.

You have an array of options for enhancing your wedding day smile, and we're more than happy to help you develop an individualized treatment plan. One caveat, though: some of these techniques could take weeks or months to complete, so don't delay!

If you would like more information about what you can do to have the most attractive smile for your wedding day, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. To learn more, read the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Beautiful Smiles by Design” and “Planning Your Wedding Day Smile.”


By George L. Landress, D.D.S., M.A.G.D.
June 24, 2019
Category: Oral Health

Periodontal DiseaseDo you have periodontal disease? Maybe the question doesn't keep you awake at night. However, periodontitis, or gum disease, is the leading cause of tooth loss in the US, according to the CDC. Your dentist in Danbury, CT, Dr. George Landress alerts their patient to signs of this potentially disastrous condition and offers the best treatments in the area.

What is periodontal disease?

It's an infection of the gum tissue surrounding the tooth roots. Caused by bacteria which proliferate in plaque and tartar, periodontitis can be mild but quickly become overwhelming and severe.

In addition, gum disease affects systemic health. The American Heart Association cites a direct link between periodontitis and heart disease, stroke, and heart attack. The American Academy of Periodontology says this dental condition may be linked to osteoporosis, respiratory disease, and even some cancers in the male population. In other words, gum disease is nothing to ignore.

Signs of gum disease

While you may not be aware the symptoms of gum disease, your dentist and hygienist in Danbury, CT, will detect them on oral examination. Ranging in severity, the signs may include:

  • Bleeding gums when touched with a toothbrush or dental probe
  • Tenderness
  • Puffiness
  • Recession
  • Deep pockets between gums and teeth (as measured with a small metal probe)
  • Halitosis (bad breath)
  • Pus between teeth and at the gum line
  • Change in gum color (red to dark and dusky)
  • Loose and drifting teeth
  • A change in dental bite
  • Oral sores
  • Pain when eating hard foods
  • Teeth which look longer than they previously did

What puts you at risk

People who neglect at-home and in-office hygiene develop gum disease even if they have no other risk factors. Some people, however, run into problems because of:

  • Heredity
  • Excessive alcohol intake (the CDC defines excessive as eight drinks a week for women and 15 for men)
  • Unresolved orthodontic issues, such as crowding
  • Teeth clenching and grinding (bruxism)
  • High carbohydrate diets
  • Smoking (the University of Rochester Medical Center cites research about e-cigarettes also harming gums and other oral tissues)

Prevention and management

The surest path to healthy gums is diligent oral hygiene. That means daily flossing and twice daily brushing to remove bacteria-filled plaque and prevent hard tartar.

Also, be careful what you consume. Avoid sugar in all forms, reduce your alcohol consumption to safe levels (one to two drinks a day only) and stop both smokeless tobacco, cigarettes, and e-cigarettes.

To control active disease, Dr. Landress may recommend tooth scaling and root planing, along with antibiotics to eliminate infection. For advanced cases, gum grafting may be in order. Your plan will be tailored to meet your specific needs.

They're your gums

Take care of them, won't you? And let Dr. George Landress and his team in Danbury, CT, partner with you in the effort. If you need a six-month examination and hygienic cleaning, call your dentist for an appointment: (203) 743-7608.


WhatYoucanDotoStopSugarfromHarmingYourHealth

Occurrences of obesity and Type 2 diabetes have soared in the last few decades. While there are a number of influencing factors, health officials place most of the blame on one of our favorite foods: sugar. Only a generation ago we were consuming an annual average of 4 pounds per person. Now, it's nearly 90 pounds.

We've long known that sugar, a favorite food not only for humans but also oral bacteria, contributes to dental disease. But we now have even more to concern us—the effect of increased sugar consumption on health in general.

It's time we took steps to rein in our favorite carbohydrate. Easier said than done, of course—not only is it hard to resist, it's also hard to avoid. With its steady addition over the years to more and more processed foods, nearly 77% of the products on grocery store shelves contain some form of sugar.

Here's what you can do, though, to reduce sugar in your diet and take better care of your dental and general health.

Be alert to added sugar in processed foods. To make wiser food choices, become familiar with the U.S.-mandated ingredient listing on food product packaging—it tells if any sugar has been added and how much. You should also become acquainted with sugar's many names like "sucrose" or "high fructose corn syrup," and marketing claims like "low fat" that may mean the producer has added sugar to improve taste.

Avoid sodas and other prepared beverages. Some of the highest sources for added sugar are sodas, sports drinks, teas or juice. You may be surprised to learn you could consume your recommended daily amount of sugar in one can of soda. Substitute sugary beverages with unsweetened drinks or water.

Exercise your body—and your voice. Physical activity, even the slightest amount, helps your body metabolize the sugar you consume. And speaking of activity, exercise your right to have your voice heard by your elected officials in support of policy changes toward less sugar additives in food products.

Becoming an informed buyer, disciplined consumer and proactive citizen are the most important ingredients for stopping this destructive health epidemic. Your teeth—and the rest of your body—will thank you.

If you would like more information on the effects of sugar on dental and general health, 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 “The Bitter Truth About Sugar.”


ImproveYourDentalHealthbyMasteringYourBrushingSkills

You're not just a patient to your dentist—you're also a partner for achieving your best oral health possible. And it takes what both of you do to achieve it.

No doubt your dentist always strives to bring their "A Game" when providing you care. You should carry the same attitude into your personal oral hygiene—to truly master the skill of brushing.

Like its equally important counterpart flossing, brushing isn't mechanically complicated—you need only a minimum of dexterity to perform it. But there are nuances to brushing that could mean the difference between just adequate and super effective.

The goal of both brushing and flossing is to clean the teeth of dental plaque, a built-up film of bacteria and food particles most responsible for dental diseases like tooth decay and periodontal (gum) disease. Brushing removes plaque from the broad front and back surfaces of teeth, while flossing removes it from between teeth where a toothbrush can't reach.

While a lot of cleaning tasks require bearing down with a little "elbow grease," that's unnecessary with brushing—in fact, you may increase your risk of gum recession if you brush too vigorously or too often. All you need is to apply a gentle, circular motion along all tooth surfaces from the gum line to the top of the tooth—a thorough brushing usually takes about two minutes, once or twice a day.

Your equipment is also important. Be sure your toothbrush is soft-bristled, multi-tufted and with a head small enough to maneuver comfortably inside your mouth. Because the bristles wear and eventually lose their effectiveness, change your brush about every three months. And be sure your toothpaste contains fluoride to help strengthen your enamel.

One last tip: while it may sound counterintuitive, don't brush immediately after a meal. Eating increases the mouth's acidity, which can temporarily soften the minerals in tooth enamel. If you brush right away you might slough off tiny bits of softened enamel. Instead, wait an hour before brushing to give your saliva time to neutralize the acid and help re-mineralize your enamel.

Unlike your dentist partner, your role in caring for your teeth doesn't require years of training. But a little extra effort to improve your brushing proficiency could increase your chances for a healthy mouth.

If you would like more information on best practices for personal oral hygiene, 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 “10 Tips for Daily Oral Care at Home.”