According to a new study, root beer is the least harmful soda when it comes to your teeth. One of the most prevalent myths surrounding tooth decay is that sugar causes it. While sugar does play a role in the formation of cavities, it’s not the sugar itself that leads to decay.
One of San Diego’s premiere cosmetic and restorative dentists, Dr. Martin Abelar, DDS, says,
"The natural bacteria that everyone has in their mouth feeds on sugar, and the result is acid that produces plaque buildup. Once plaque forms, it begins to wear away at the hard outer surface of the teeth, called enamel, until it reaches the inside of the tooth and patients start to feel pain or sensitivity."
The problem with some soda is that its acidity ranking can be higher than that of battery acid. Battery acid has a pH level of 1.0, while some soft drinks ranked as high as 2.52.
Some believe switching to diet or sugar-free sodas is the solution to saving both their waistlines and their teeth. However, these alternatives come with their own dangers. They contain acids that erode teeth at the same rate as regular sodas. Sports drinks and juices contain sugar and acids that make them problematic as well. However, soft drinks are ten times more erosive than fruit juices.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, one in six American adults suffer from an anxiety disorder. A study done by Tel Aviv University researchers has found that social anxiety increases the risk for teeth grinding which can lead to excessive wear on teeth, fractures and jaw pain. This grinding of the teeth can even cause the jaw to move out of place resulting in a TMJ disorder. In the study, 42% of those suffering from social related phobias and anxiety were found to have moderate to severe dental wear.
Preventing the social anxiety that is potentially causing teeth grinding is one step to taking care of the body and mind. There are many professional treatment options for social anxiety as well as methods you can implement at home.
More than 175 million American are missing at least one tooth, and the numbers are rising each year. Nineteen percent of those 65 and older suffer from edentulism, the medical term for missing all of their teeth. Of those 75 and older, 26 percent experienced complete tooth loss.
The "Priceless" MasterCard commercials from the late 90s remain one of the best campaign concepts of the 20th century. One of the reasons they were so successful is because they helped us understand and sort out how we place value on things without even realizing it.
Now in the Advertising Slogan Hall of Fame, their line "There are some things money can’t buy. For everything else, there’s MasterCard" brought to light the obvious but often forgotten notion that emotional value will always trump financial value.
The investment in not just quality, but superior care for your smile is one of those unique situations that actually merits both emotional and financial value.
Studies have shown that people notice smiles first when meeting someone new. This first impression has an impact in so many areas of someone’s life that are often not considered. We smile at job interviews, on dates, in our profile pictures on social media.
People who are unhappy with their smiles may try to smile only with their lips, or become uncomfortable when meeting new people because they are self-conscious about their smiles. Research shows that individuals who smile less often or smile with their mouths closed are perceived as less-confident, smug and even secretive.
As you can see, your smile is one of the most important things in your day to day life. It can, directly and indirectly, affect your levels of happiness, confidence, and success. Call Dr. Abelar’s office today at 858-866-9692 to discuss how we can help you completely change your life and get that priceless smile you’ve always dreamed of.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last few years, you know that the teeth whitening business has exploded. People have finally realized how easy and relatively inexpensive it is to improve their appearance with something simple and fast.
With the increase in popularity came the overload of available products. There are gels, pastes, strips, trays, lights, rinses, you name it. There are hundreds of brands, retailers that range from boutique to big box and none of this is even taking into consideration the professional options.
People have taken to sites such as Pinterest with home recipes and social media influencers have posted videos that have gone viral of them painting charcoal on their teeth to get them whiter. It has become information overload and trying to decide which methods work and don’t have become a full-time job for some.
Dr. Martin Abelar, DDS and leading San Diego cosmetic dentist says,
"The great thing about in-office professional treatments is that they can be done even on your lunch hour. Thanks to the quality of materials and advanced technology, that one session can do what at-home treatments can take weeks and months to do. And sometimes, no matter how many at-home treatments you try, you just won't be able to achieve that naturally, bright white shade that professional applications can."
As the holiday season approaches, the everyday reasons for wanting a whiter smile are now compounded with some season specific things. This is why November and December are the most popular time of the year to get your teeth professionally whitened.
It’s almost impossible to avoid pictures during the Thanksgiving and Christmas season. Family gatherings, work parties and evenings out with friends celebrating mean pictures are flying from phone to phone and social media platform to social media platform. No one wants to look at their picture and grimace from tooth discoloration.
Whether you’re going to a local festival or heading to the beaches of Bali for the holiday season, research is showing that people are trading their love of material possessions for new experiences. Whether you want to look perfect in case you meet someone on your trip or you just want to look good in the pictures you post when you get back, it’s obvious why so many choose to get their teeth whitened this time of year.
New Year New You
New years resolutions creep up on us and before we know it we’re committed to something we just aren’t sure we can make happen. When friends and family ask what you want for Christmas, a professional teeth whitening may be a great jump-start on your resolutions for a new improved you.
Catching up with Friends and Family
The holidays are prime-time for family reunions and meeting up with old friends you haven’t seen in ages. There’s nothing more nerve wrecking than knowing you’re going to see your old high school sweetheart at a holiday dinner party or that cousin you can’t stand that acts like they’re so much better than you. Many choose teeth whitening this time of year because it gives them a confidence boost to help handle these stressful scenarios.
Although many treatment options are available, research supports that professional in-office whitening solutions work best. Research conducted by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry found that 82.5% of those surveyed saw a noticeable difference from their professional, in-office whitening treatment.
In a world dominated by companies shouting out loud or in print about who has the lowest prices, it can be easy to get caught up in the price wars. There are many situations where the cheapest offering just as good as the name brand or more expensive one. However, the consequences of choosing cost over quality can be pretty serious in some cases. Here are a few areas you should consider quality over cost on:
A good rule of thumb is that anything permanent shouldn’t be done by the cheapest service offered. The visibility of tattoos and permanence make this one a double-whammy. A quick internet search for the term "Tattoo Fails" will be all the convincing you need not to go cheap on this one.
The biggest concern here is safety. How would you feel if you dropped your car off and saw the mechanic looking up an online video on "How to replace the brakes on a 2012 Chevy Malibu"? The amount of time spent driving your vehicle each day adds up to way more than you think. The Association for Safe International Road Travel estimates 1.3 million people die in car accidents every year. Making sure the person who is working on your car knows what they’re doing could literally save your life.
Very few people look forward to going to the dentist. Because of this their search for a dentist often ends with the one that is cheapest and easiest to find. But if you don’t like going to the dentist, why would you want to have to go back several times to fix the same thing. This is exactly what happens if you go for the quick, cheap fix.
Dr. Martin Abelar, DDS, leading San Diego dentist says,
"You wouldn’t believe how much of the work I do is actually fixing the work people had done by other dentists offering cheap, corner-cutting procedures. Your mouth is not an area you want to trust to the lowest bidder. In fact, it usually costs more in the long run because you end up needing the same work done multiple times because the quality of the work matched the price."
Mattresses and Shoes
These may seem like two weird things to pair together, but the reasoning for not being cheap when purchasing either is the same. You are going to use them every single day. Your comfort, relative to their use can have an impact on your physical health which in turn can affect your mood. If your back or feet are aching, you will be grumpy, less productive and it could cost you tons of money to treat the sometimes permanent health problems associated with them.
Of course, this list could go on-and-on. I think everyone probably has a few stories about how going cheap ended very badly for them. Avoid making those mistakes if you can and think through the things that have lasting impacts on your life. Be sure to stick with quality over cost where your health, safety, and appearance are concerned.
Every holiday season hours are spent searching for the right gift for family, friends, coworkers and even acquaintances. The sad reality is so many of those perfectly selected knick knacks end up on folding tables at yard sales with a little yellow sticker priced to sell. I bet you can’t even remember half of the things you were given last year, can you?
One of the hottest trends this year is teeth whitening and Dr. Abelar loves helping people look and feel their best. As the coffee and wine culture of this generation continue to evolve with enthusiasm, it seems anyone and everyone is looking for a way to pass that tissue test with bright, white flawless teeth. Not many things can leave you looking and feeling like a new person in less than an hour.
Maybe you’ve seen the light and have ditched those messy strips and as-seen-on-TV solutions that leave much to be desired. This holiday season is the perfect time to share your secret with your closest friends and family members. It can even help you take care of that white elephant gift you keep meaning to pick up for the annual office party or obligatory family get-together. What could go over better at a white elephant gift exchange than literally giving the gift of a whiter smile?
This generation is shifting the focus from material possessions to memorable experiences. This trend applies not only to a more meaningful daily life but to a less cluttered holiday season too. Why not get yourself and a friend a trip to our office for an in-house whitening session for a great alternative to the usual movie and lunch girl’s day?
For more information, give us a call at 858-866-9692 and let us help you cross those names off your Christmas gift list so you can have a relaxing and memorable holiday season.
Bringing your child to the dentist by their first birthday is very important for their long-term health. Introducing them to their home dentist, hygienists, office atmosphere and the normality of a professional cleaning helps create a positive association with oral care and encourages healthy habits from the very beginning.
Dr. Abelar believes in creating a lasting relationship with his patients from early childhood to ensure consistent and comprehensive care. Regular cleanings every six months beginning in babyhood allow for Dr. Abelar to get to know your child’s teeth and mouth. This creates an opportunity to notice when something looks off much sooner than jumping from dentist to dentist that may be unfamiliar with the nature of each child’s unique oral structure.
The Center for Disease Control says that 40% of children are suffering from tooth decay by the time they begin Kindergarten. It’s currently the most common chronic childhood disease in the United States.
The misconception that baby teeth are not important is very dangerous and can have lasting negative impacts well into adulthood. Bad habits such as irregular flossing or brushing carry on into adulthood. Infections don’t just hold consequences for the tooth itself. Infections involving baby teeth, especially when left untreated, spread to the roots surrounding the teeth.
Adult teeth mature in the gums underneath the baby teeth until they fall out. This infection in the root can easily disrupt the development of these permanent teeth and even cause damage to their appearance and structure. If a baby tooth falls out or is removed for any reason, the emergence of a healthy adult tooth can be affected. The permanent tooth may come in crooked, at the wrong angle or emerge before it's ready.
The best way to promote healthy habits and a lifetime of good oral health is to bring your children into the office as early as possible and maintain those vital twice a year cleanings. Even if you get behind, our office is only a phone call away. Let us help you keep your whole family healthy and on track today by scheduling an appointment at 858-866-9692.
For many parents, taking their child to the dentist can be a stressful ordeal when the child is either fearful or hyperactive. For many children, the length of time for a professional teeth cleaning and exam can be a long time to sit still in the dentist’s chair. Dr. Martin Abelar offers sedation dentistry as an option to ease the experience.
One option is oral sedation dentistry. Dr. Abelar will prescribe an oral sedative for your child to take 1-2 hours prior to the appointment. Your child will drift into a peaceful slumber that should last through the duration of the dental procedures. Once the work is complete, your child will wake with little or no memory of the visit or the work that was done.Dr. Abelar also offers conscious sedation dentistry under which we administer nitrous oxide to sedate your child to the point that he or she achieves a comfortable yet conscious state of sedation. Conscious sedation allows your child to be semi-awake, able to talk and ask or answer questions during treatment and be aware of what work is done without fear or anxiety.
Dr. Abelar also offers conscious sedation dentistry under which we administer nitrous oxide to sedate your child to the point that he or she achieves a comfortable yet conscious state of sedation. Conscious sedation allows your child to be semi-awake, able to talk and ask or answer questions during treatment and be aware of what work is done without fear or anxiety. When Dr. Abelar treats your child under conscious sedation, he or she can be restored to full consciousness when we replace the flow of nitrous oxide with pure oxygen.
While some parents may consider sedation dentistry a luxury, Dr. Abelar believes that starting with sedation dentistry at a young age can eliminate a lot of the fear and anxiety that goes along with dental office visits. It may help your child feel comfortable with maintaining better lifelong care by conditioning them to understand that there is nothing to fear.
To inquire about sedation dentistry or schedule an appointment, call our office at 858-866-9692.
Rapid advances in technology are setting apart the dentists of yesterday from the dentists of today. For those who haven’t been to the dentist in the last five years or more, you may be pleasantly surprised by the changes you see if you brave the trip to see Dr. Martin Abelar, a San Diego dentist specializing in cosmetic, family and neuromuscular dentistry.
The technology we have been able to adopt in our practice over the last few years is way beyond anything patients saw in years past. We have replaced old school radiographs with lower radiation digital x-rays, and we have new dental instruments with laser technology that can detect cavities without poking and prodding at teeth.
We also have advanced intraoral cameras and laser imaging that can speed the computer aided modeling of potential crowns, veneers and other restorations, reducing the number of necessary appointments required to plan, create and place them in the patient’s mouths.
We also have largely transitioned to better bonding and filling materials that look and feel much more like natural teeth favoring composite resin over the amalgam fillings of the past. These new materials are able to fill holes on the front and side surfaces of teeth with less drilling into the natural tooth surface.
Overall, Dr. Abelar believes that these advances will offer patients better preventive care, as well as less traumatic maintenance and restorative care. Making that first step to get back into the dentist’s office can be scary when patients haven’t been in a while, but once they get here, we feel confident that they won’t stay away so long again. The future is looking brighter, and so will their smiles.
As we watched the Rio Olympics it was hard not to reminisce about the headlines made by Team USA swimmer Ryan Lochte’s Grillz that were first seen in Beijing in 2009 and sparking controversy when he was asked to remove them before climbing to the podium to received medals in the 2012 London Olympics. In an issue of Us Weekly, Lochte was quoted as referring to them as being like diamond studded retainers. One might even jest that like Lochte, many Americans might find the pursuit of the perfect smile worth its weight in diamonds…or gold. Dr. Martin Abelar is a cosmetic dentist helping patients in the San Diego area don their own perfect smiles.
Maybe not everyone wants to wear the American flag on their teeth as Lochte did. For many, the goal is simply to have straighter teeth. Or whiter teeth. Or mercury free fillings. Historically, gold was the metal of choice for dental restorations because it was malleable, non-corrosive, and hard enough to form a biting service. Additionally, gold has been studied for its anti-inflammatory properties, which are still used in a variety of medical and cosmetic products today.
In the 1980s gold dental restorations fell out of the mainstream, largely due to the rising value and price of gold, and the availability of new silver amalgam fillings. Amalgam fillings remained the standard of care when 2005 when the FDA began soliciting research and recommendations to determine if amalgam fillings should be banned due to the toxicity of their mercury component, as had already been done by Norway, Denmark and Sweden.
Composite resin fillings have now become far more popular than amalgam due to the fact that they can be formulated to match the coloration of the patient’s natural teeth, which most people find more cosmetically appealing. Fads like Grillz and dental charms designed as jewelry to be cemented to the teeth will come and go, but having a great smile never will.
If you would like to consult about your options for upgrading your dental aesthetics, contact our office at 858-866-9692.
It’s been popping up in your newsfeed. You may have even thought it was a fake article from a farce website. Can it be true? Can you really throw away your dental floss?? Think of all the time wasted from years of flossing! A recent investigation is causing many patients to believe they can finally forego this hygiene habit. According to the investigation, the Associated Press asked the government for evidence that supports the benefits of flossing on oral health, and much to their surprise, they didn’t turn up much in favor of it. For years, dentists across the country have emphasized the importance of daily flossing to their patients. So what is the dental community saying about this? Dr. Abelar and his colleagues are answering with a resounding “Yes! You must keep flossing!”
While floss-haters are rejoicing at the thought of never having to floss again, there are still some very real health benefits to flossing, despite with this recent study would lead you to believe. Almost any dentist you talk to will tell you they’ve seen the benefits associated with flossing. People who floss regularly have healthier gums. Why is that, you may ask? To put it simply, your mouth is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. It’s dark, warm and moist, making it prime real estate for bacteria to set up camp. Flossing gets rid of the gunk between your teeth and gums that eventually turns into that bacterial build-up. That build-up can lead to some serious dental problems down the road, like gum disease or tooth decay. Regular flossing and brushing are your first lines of defense against bacteria.
It’s also worth noting that both the American Dental Association (ADA) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services are still recommending flossing as an important component in your oral hygiene regimen. According to the ADA, the “lack of strong evidence doesn’t equate to a lack of effectiveness,” meaning that just because there isn’t a bounty of evidence in support of flossing doesn’t necessarily mean it isn’t working.
So, before you toss that spool of floss in the trash for good, stop and ask yourself if ridding yourself of the minor inconvenience of flossing is worth the risk of gum disease and tooth decay. Sure, it may add a few minutes to your bedtime routine, but you wouldn’t you rather be safe than sorry? Your oral health is important, so don’t ditch the floss just yet, and remember to schedule annual cleanings and exams with your dentist. Give Dr. Abelar’s office a call today at (858) 866-9692 to schedule your appointment.
Roughly 5-8 % of Americans avoid getting dental care entirely, while as many as 20% of Americans admit to only going to the dentist when absolutely necessary, all due to fear of the dentist. For some of these patients, fear stems from a real traumatic event they experienced at a dentist’s office such as improperly being numbed before a procedure, but for far more, the fear comes from not feeling in control of what goes on in the dentist’s chair. Dr. Martin Abelar specializes in treating patients with high levels of dental anxiety.
We have come to recognize that lying prone in the dentist’s chair while a dental hygienist or dentist has hands in your mouth can be stressful because it limits your ability to communicate if you are uncomfortable, and it is important that we be responsive, especially when it comes to managing your levels of discomfort and pain. Patients can feel especially helpless when they are in the chair and things are happening in a way that they don’t understand or can’t give feedback.
Dr. Abelar makes sure that all dental procedures are explained to the patient before any work begins, and takes care to prep the patient for what to expect every step along the way. We encourage patients to signal us with their hands when they have a question or are uncomfortable. When we see the patient’s hand go up, we stop everything and give him or her a chance to speak and voice any concerns, and take breaks as needed.
For the more fearful patients, we also offer sedation dentistry. Administration of nitrous oxide gas can help calm the anxiety of the patient throughout treatment and levels can be adjusted throughout the procedure as needed. At the end of the procedure, we reverse the flow of nitrous oxide and replace it with oxygen so the patient is fully alert and able to drive before they leave our office.
To learn more about dental care for high anxiety patients or sedation dentistry, call our office to schedule a consultation at 858-866-9692.
As we discover more and more negative consequences of chemicals and processed foods, many people are looking for more natural alternatives for hygiene and personal care. Essential oils have become an important component of homeopathic medicine and can be combined with baking soda or “carrier” oils to create a chemical free alternative to traditional toothpaste or mouthwash. Dr. Martin Abelar encourages patients to keep in mind while trying these out, the American Dental Association has stated that while these treatments are harmless, more research is needed to understand their efficacy.
For those interested in DIY homeopathic toothpaste, here are some of the more popular essential oils that proponents are using:
Lemon: When combined with baking soda, lemon essential oil can help whiten teeth while killing bacteria. A popular addition as a carrier oil is coconut oil, which has both antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.
Spearmint or Peppermint: Commonly the flavors of traditional toothpaste, spearmint and peppermint essential oils are both prized for their antimicrobial properties and their ability to eliminate bad breath.
Clove: When used without diluting, clove oil has been known to be a powerful numbing agent to sooth tooth aches and mouth sores. When combined with a carrier oil and baking soda, it can effectively kill bacteria in the mouth as well.
Tea tree or Eucalyptus Oil: Tea tree oil and Eucalyptus Oil have been found to be powerful germicides.
Cinnamon Oil: Like Clove, Cinnamon oil has been found to have pain killing properties and fights bad breath.
Regardless of whether you are using your own creation of essential oils and baking soda or traditional toothpaste, Dr. Abelar says that patients should continue to brush and floss twice a day and get a professional cleaning every six months.
To schedule your six month cleaning, contact our office at 858-866-9692.