Posts for: July, 2018

By Joel E. Johnson, DMD, PA
July 26, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures

Need crowns from your Columbia, SC, dentist?dental crowns

A dental crown is made out of porcelain, or ceramic. Unlike veneers, crowns don't cover only the front surface of your teeth. They're caps that fit over the unattractive, decayed, or damaged tooth. Crowns can replace a missing tooth when one of your Columbia, SC, dentist installs a dental bridge over your gums.

Installation of Crowns

There are three steps to getting your unsightly tooth capped:

  • Step 1: Your dentist will numb the area surrounding the tooth and begin preparing the tooth. This is done to reshape the tooth so it fits under the crown.
  • Step 2: A crown is designed at a laboratory using impressions taken of your teeth. The impressions are taken digitally or with the use of a putty-like material and are used as a guide so that laboratory technicians can mold a crown that'll fit perfectly over your tooth.
  • Step 3: The permanent crown is cemented over the tooth using a special type of cement or resin.

Caring for Crowns

Improve your dental care by brushing twice a day and flossing at least once before bed. In addition to maintaining a healthy oral regimen, make sure to visit your dentists twice a year for your bi-annual examination. Also, make sure to use fluoride-containing products, like mouthwash and toothpaste, that will help prevent cavities.

Advantages of Crowns

Besides making your smile more aesthetically pleasing, crowns have other advantages:

  • They're used to cover restorative procedures such as root canals and dental implants.
  • Several crowns can be used if you have more than one tooth that needs to be covered.
  • They give your teeth reinforcement, therefore improving your bite and capability to chew.
  • Crowns also support fillings that have been dislocated.

For more information on dental crowns or to schedule an appointment, contact your Columbia, SC, dentist, Dr. Joel Johnson by calling their office at (803) 788-2555.

By Joel E. Johnson, DMD, PA
July 22, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures

When the multi-platinum recording artist, songwriter and TV personality Jason Derulo was recently asked about his ideal woman, his answer covered a remarkably broad spectrum. "There’s no specific thing," he said, "so I think it’s unfair to say what my ‘type’ is." But it turns out that there is one thing the So You Think You Can Dance judge considers essential: A beautiful smile.

"I’m not into messy teeth," Derulo said. "If the grill has spaces and different colors, it’s not my vibe."

As it turns out, he may be on to something: A number of surveys have indicated that a bright, healthy smile is often the first thing people notice when meeting someone new. Yet many are reluctant to open up that big grin because they aren’t satisfied with the way their teeth look. If you’re one of them, consider this: Modern cosmetic dentistry offers a variety of ways to improve your smile — and it may be easier and more affordable than you think.

For example, if your smile isn’t as bright as you would like it to be, teeth whitening is an effective and economical way to lighten it up. If you opt for in-office treatments, you can expect a lightening effect of up to 10 shades in a single one-hour treatment! Or, you can achieve the same effect in a week or two with a take-home kit we can custom-make for you. Either way, you’ll be safe and comfortable being treated under the supervision of a dental professional — and the results can be expected to last for up to two years, or perhaps more.

If your teeth have minor spacing irregularities, small chips or cracks, it may be possible to repair them in a single office visit via cosmetic bonding. In this process, a liquid composite resin is applied to the teeth and cured (hardened) with a special light. This high-tech material, which comes in colors to match your teeth, can be built up in layers and shaped with dental instruments to create a pleasing, natural effect.

If your smile needs more than just a touch-up, dental veneers may be the answer. These wafer-thin coverings, placed right on top of your natural teeth, can be made in a variety of shapes and colors — from a natural pearly luster to a brilliant "Hollywood white." Custom-made veneers typically involve the removal of a few millimeters of tooth enamel, making them a permanent — and irreversible — treatment. However, by making teeth look more even, closing up spaces and providing dazzling whiteness, veneers just might give you the smile you’ve always wanted.

If you would like more information about cosmetic dental treatments, please call our office to arrange a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine article “Cosmetic Dentistry — A Time for Change.”

By Joel E. Johnson, DMD, PA
July 12, 2018
Category: Oral Health
Tags: oral hygiene  

Everyday habits could be helping or hurting your oral health.Oral Hygiene

How well do you care for your smile? If you brush and floss regularly than you may think you are doing everything you need to for your smile. Not so fast. You might be missing a crucial part of the oral hygiene puzzle. Our Columbia, SC, dentist Dr. Joel Johnson is here to provide you with helpful tips for making sure you are doing everything you should be for your oral health.

Visit the Dentist

Even if everything in your mouth feels hunky-dory you still need to visit your general dentist in Columbia, SC, every six months. Why? Well, plaque and tartar can easily linger in hard-to-reach places, which can lead to cavities and gum disease if you aren’t careful. Our professional dental cleanings ensure that you have a healthy, cavity-free smile. Preventive dentistry is key to a healthy smile for the long term.

Brush Twice a Day

This habit is really not that difficult and yet you would be surprised to hear just how many people only brush their teeth once a day. To keep your smile healthy it’s important that you brush your teeth in the morning and then again right before bedtime. Don’t forget to brush all surfaces of your teeth (front, back and chewing surfaces), as well as your tongue. Also, don’t forget to replace your toothbrush head every 3-4 months, or once the bristles start to look worn and frayed.

Brush Thoroughly

How long should you brush? We’re so glad you asked! You should make sure that you are brushing for at least 2 minutes each time you brush. Not sure you’re brushing long enough? Don’t worry; you can always set a timer on your smartphone to let you know that you’ve spent the right amount of time on cleaning your teeth.

Flossing is Key

Good oral health also means flossing regularly. In order to keep spaces between teeth and the gumline healthy, you should be flossing once a day. Make sure that you are also using a clean section of floss for each tooth. Always be gentle when flossing, as being too aggressive could lead to gum injuries.

Eating Healthy = A Healthy Smile

It’s important that you are getting the proper nutrients you need for a beautiful, radiant smile. Avoiding sugar and refined starches (e.g. white bread; pasta) are key to reducing your risk for decay. This means nixing sodas, sports drinks, some fruit juices (those with added sugars), cakes, cookies and other desserts. Instead, drink lots of water and enjoy a healthy, balanced diet.

Do you have questions about your oral care routine? Want to schedule your next cleaning with us? If so, call our Columbia, SC, dental office today. We are happy to provide your smile with the treatment and care it deserves.

By Joel E. Johnson, DMD, PA
July 12, 2018
Category: Oral Health
Tags: gum disease   diabetes  

Periodontal (gum) disease is a progressive bacterial infection caused primarily by bacterial plaque on tooth surfaces not adequately removed by daily oral hygiene. In fact, nearly all of us will develop gingivitis (inflammation of the gum tissues) if we fail to clean our teeth and gums for an extended period of time.

Some people, however, have a greater susceptibility for developing gum disease because of other risk factors not related to hygiene. Patients with diabetes are at particular high risk for acute forms of gum disease.

Diabetes is a chronic condition in which the body can’t adequately regulate the bloodstream’s levels of glucose, the body’s primary energy source. Type 1 diabetes is caused by inadequate production in the pancreas of the hormone insulin, the body’s primary glucose regulator. In Type 2 diabetes the body develops a resistance to insulin’s effects on glucose, even if the insulin production is adequate. Type 1 patients require daily insulin injections to survive, while most Type 2 patients manage their condition with medications, dietary improvements, exercise and often insulin supplements.

Diabetes has a number of serious consequences, including a higher risk of heart disease and stroke. Its connection with gum disease, though, is related to how the disease alters the body’s response to infection and trauma by increasing the occurrence of inflammation. While inflammation is a beneficial response of the body’s immune system to fight infection, prolonged inflammation destroys tissues. A similar process occurs with gum disease, as chronic inflammation leads to tissue damage and ultimately tooth loss.

Researchers have found that patients with diabetes and gum disease may lessen the effects of inflammation related to each condition by properly managing both. If you’ve been diagnosed with either type of diabetes, proper dental care is especially important for you to reduce your risk of gum disease. In addition to effective daily brushing and flossing and a professional cleaning and checkup every six months (more frequent is generally better), you should also monitor your gum health very closely, paying particular attention to any occurrence of bleeding, redness or swelling of the gums.

If you encounter any of these signs you should contact us as soon as possible for an examination. And be sure to inform any dental professional that cares for your teeth you’re diabetic — this could affect their treatment approach.

If you would like more information on dental care for patients with diabetes, 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 “Diabetes & Periodontal Disease.”

By Joel E. Johnson, DMD, PA
July 09, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Veneers   cosmetic dentistry  

It's rare to see a movie star who doesn't have a perfect, white smile these days. Many of them rely on veneers, thin restorations attached veneersto the fronts of teeth. Veneers are an excellent smile enhancement whether you're starring in a blockbuster or just want to improve some aspect of your smile. Dentist Dr. Joel Johnson offer veneers and other cosmetic services in his Columbia, SC, office.

How veneers can help your smile

Veneers cover smile imperfections with a thin layer of translucent porcelain. Veneers are created from impressions of your teeth to ensure a comfortable fit. Although the restorations are as thin as a fingernail, they provide excellent coverage for the issues that can mar your smile.

Multi-purpose veneers are ideal for many cosmetic issues

Your Columbia dentist may recommend veneers if one or more of these problems affect your smile:

  • Discolorations: Whether your tooth darkened after an injury or dental treatment or changed color due to childhood tetracycline usage, a veneer offers a simple solution. Veneers are crafted in multiple shades of white, which makes it easy to choose a shade that matches your other teeth perfectly.
  • A Dull Smile: Veneers are a good choice if teeth whitening hasn't lightened your teeth as much as you had hoped, or you're looking for a longer-term whitening option. Best of all, veneers are very stain resistant and won't be affected if you drink coffee, wine or other beverages that contain dark pigments.
  • Imperfections: Even the tiniest imperfection in your tooth enamel can be very noticeable. Veneers conceal cracks, chips, uneven surfaces and other flaws. They can also change the length or shape of your teeth. Do you feel a little self-conscious due to a crooked tooth? Thanks to your new veneer, your tooth will look just like neighboring teeth.
  • Gaps: Gaps between teeth may not affect the function of your smile but they can certainly detract from its appearance. Although you may need orthodontic treatment if you have large gaps, slight spaces between teeth can be covered with one or more veneers.

Transform your smile with veneers! Call Columbia, SC, dentist Dr. Joel Johnson at (803) 788-2555 to schedule an appointment.

Columbia, SC Dentist
Joel E Johnson, DMD, PA
9 Office Park Ct.
Columbia, SC 29223
(803) 788-2555
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[email protected]


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