The Unexpected Secret to a Beautiful, Healthy Smile? Bleaching Gel!


Bleaching hImage result for bleaching gelas changed the lives of countless patients over the past 20 years. A bright smile has been proven by countless studies to be hugely beneficial to one’s self esteem, outlook on life and even job prospects! Still, one would assume that the only benefits of bleaching are aesthetic. According to numerous recent studies, however, the benefits go way beyond the appearance of your teeth.

When you come into our dental office for a bleaching, a gel containing the active ingredient carbamide peroxide is placed on your teeth. The gel whitens beautifully, but this amazing solution does much more than that. Numerous recent studies have proven its ability to kill bacteria, reduce plaque and even prevent cavities!

Bleaching gel cleans teeth through a few different methods. First, it elevates salivary pH which fights acids in your mouth that cause tooth decay. Second, it kills one of the two bacteria in the mouth that cause cavities. Third, it removes plaque from the surface of the teeth. Plaque buildup is one of the greatest barriers faced by those trying to maintain a healthy smile.

While brushing and flossing are great ways to prevent cavities, for those who struggle to do so, or those who still find themselves with cavities, sleeping with a bleaching gel lined tray can be the solution. The nightly bleaching gel formula is less potent than the one used for in-office bleaching, and thus causes minimal tooth sensitivity. It still, however, whitens teeth and provides lasting aesthetic and oral health benefits.

So if you or someone you know seems to have cavities at every dentist visit, we recommend bleaching gel (available at A New Smile), for a whiter and healthier smile!

Call or click today to make an appointment! (305) 383-9944 /


The Only Thing Worse than Wisdom Teeth Extraction is What Happens When You Don’t Remove Them

wdeeth picture

For many, wisdom teeth extraction can be a scary trip to the dentist. The procedure itself requires anesthesia and may involve slight pressure, and the recovery can be painful and cause swollen cheeks.

So you might wonder why anyone would choose to get this procedure done. Why not just let your teeth be? The answer depends on how your individual wisdom teeth grow in.

Depending on the shape of your mouth and the position of your teeth, your wisdom teeth could grow in without causing damage to the surrounding teeth. But for many, wisdom teeth are impacted, meaning that they grow into teeth next to them, causing them to have to be removed.

While you may be reluctant to undergo wisdom teeth extraction, avoiding this procedure can lead to some pretty nasty dental maladies that could be significantly harder and more expensive to deal with.

If your jaw is not large enough for them, your wisdom teeth may become impacted and unable to break through your gums. Your wisdom teeth may also break partway through your gums, causing a flap of gum tissue to grow over them. Food and germs can get trapped under the flap and cause your gums to become red, swollen, and painful, due to probable infection.

Wisdom teeth often grow in awkward angles, with the top of the tooth facing forward, backward, or to either side. Other than infection, impacted wisdom teeth can cause damage to other teeth and bone if they grow into said tooth or bone as well as cysts.

Again, not all wisdom teeth need to be removed. But if there’s a chance that your wisdom teeth will cause problems, it’s easier to take them out when you’re young. That’s because the roots of the teeth are not fully developed yet, and the bone around the teeth is less dense. Younger people also heal faster than older ones. As you age, it will take longer to recover from the surgery.

So while you may be hesitant to come in for an extraction, when it comes to your wisdom teeth, a trip to A New Smile to get your wisdom teeth removed painlessly by one of our excellent and experienced oral surgeons may be the worthiest trip to the dentist that you’ve ever made.

We Can’t Stress the Impact of Stress on Your Teeth Enough!

          Stress is an interesting biological phenomenon that in recent years has been researched and viewed as increasingly medically relevant. In the short term, stress allows us to better cope with high intensity situations by conserving energy spent on bodily processes such as our immune system and instead spending it on our brain and nervous system, allowing us to be alert and ready to act in response to the problem. When humans developed this adaptive trait, stressful situations were all but limited to short periods of time such as when early humans would flee from predators. Today, however, with increasingly demanding careers, stress lasts for prolonged periods of time, causing prolonged periods in which the immune system does not get the resources it needs to function properly. This carries consequences for our entire body, including our mouth.


The most notable effect of stress on your oral health is increased bruxism, or teeth grinding and jaw clenching. Prolonged teeth grinding can wear down your enamel, cause tooth decay or sensitivity, and may even do permanent damage to the jaw. This can happen without us noticing and can be worse when we are sleeping. If you wake up in the morning with sore teeth or headaches, you may be suffering from bruxism. Luckily, at A New Smile, we can make you a night guard to protect your teeth from this very harmful symptom of stress.

As discussed earlier, stress takes a toll on your immune system by allocating resources elsewhere. This increases the risk for all kinds of infection. For your mouth specifically, however, a weak immune system means increased risk for periodontal disease because your body has a harder time fighting off the bacteria that causes it.

Canker sores are small bumps with a white or grayish base that have red borders. They show up inside your mouth, sometimes in pairs or in greater numbers and can be painful. While the cause of them is unknown, they are known to be linked to stress, and it is likely that susceptibility is increased during stressful times.

Because stress can dominate our thinking, it tends to cause us to avoid our responsibility to maintain healthy habits. As such, if you’re stressed, it’s extra important to take care of yourself, even if it’s easier to do the opposite. Be vigilant about brushing, flossing, eating healthy foods, and drinking plenty of water, and you can minimize the negative impacts of stress. To cut out stress altogether, helpful techniques include exercise, yoga, meditation or any healthy, enjoyable hobby. We all get stressed, but today we know that it is medically imperative that we minimize stress as much as we can.

Marijuana Should Make You Paranoid (About Your Oral Health)!


        Researchers from Arizona State University published a study finding that marijuana use was linked to poor periodontal health. The study included 1,037 participants born in Dunedin, New Zealand in the 1970s, and examined them until the age of 38. The goal was to determine if there was a correlation between marijuana use and increased medical issues. Study participants were assessed on the frequency of marijuana consumption and dependence at the ages of 18, 21, 26, 32 and 38. 

        While marijuana use was found to be unrelated to all midlife physical health concerns, such as lung function, higher levels of inflammation and metabolic health, a notable exception was periodontal health. 675 of the study participants reported that they had used cannabis. Those who smoked marijuana between the ages of 18-38 had poorer periodontal health at the study’s conclusion at age 38.

        “We found that marijuana is associated with adverse effects,” says study author Madeline Meier, an assistant professor in the psychology department at Arizona State University.
Researchers are unaware of the origin of the correlation, but suspect that it may be related to dry mouth, which is common among marijuana smokers and can create a breeding ground for oral bacteria.
        “Unlike tobacco smoking, cannabis smoking is associated with few physical health problems in midlife, with the exception of periodontal disease,” Meier stated in a recent release. “Physicians should convey to patients that their cannabis use puts them at risk for tooth loss.” 

        These findings validate a 2008 study, which discovered a correlation between periodontal combined attachment loss (a sign of irreversible periodontal disease) and cannabis use. That study, “Cannabis smoking and periodontal disease among young adults,” examined three cannabis exposure groups (no exposure, some exposure and high exposure). 23.6 percent of high-exposure participants in the high-exposure group had attachment loss, as opposed to 6.5 percent in the no-exposure cohort.
        Other recent research by Meier and colleagues discovered that in addition to contributing to poor oral health, marijuana use could affect IQ and socioeconomic mobility.

        ​For these reasons (and the fact that it is illegal in the state of Florida), I personally recommend against marijuana use, but if you do indulge, make sure to drink copious amounts of water or to use a high fluoride prescription toothpaste (available at our office)!





Periodontal Disease: The Very Latest

Periodontal disease is a hot topic in dentistry because we have recently learned a lot that has changed the way we look at the disease. In this blog, I will let you in on the most recent developments that will shape how we treat this disease in the future.

Periodontal disease causes irreversible loss of the jawbone. Like other autoimmune diseases such as lupus and HIV, periodontal disease cannot be cured, but it can be managed. What is revolutionary is the way we are now suggesting to manage it. The basic premise is the avoidance of flare-ups through controlling the host. Proper oral care and professional Dental care is paramount, but what’s new is what we now recommend to reduce inflammation. 

We know beyond the shadow of a doubt now that there is a link between periodontitis and heart disease. Therefore, we recommend to reduce the inflammatory process the same way, with a good omega 3 supplement, a daily baby aspirin and a specific probiotic. All these can be found over the counter. Probiotics are also essential in the control of halitosis, or bad breath. 

Don’t be alarmed if most dental professionals have not heard of this regimen, as it is very recent and unless they would have attended the American Dental Association’s Chicago Dental Meeting in February they would not have heard of it. Fortunately, the dentists at A New Smile Dental Center are up to date with all of the groundbreaking research regarding dentistry and preventive medicine.

So if you believe you may be suffering from periodontal disease, visit a dental professional more regularly than twice a year. I recommend once every 3 months. Get a good electric toothbrush (my personal preference is Sonicare or Oral-B). You should also get a Waterpik or Airfloss, devices that act as tiny pressure cleaners for your teeth. Flossing is crucial, but if you cannot, at least use as floss pick or a soft pick (Butler Gum). The probiotics that I recommend are Evora’s Evoraplus or Gum’s Periobalance.

Any 81 mg aspirin works. The quality and freshness of the omega 3 is important, however. 

The majority of the information in this post comes from a presentation by Dr. Samuel B. Low, a respected periodontist and educator that has served as president of the American Association of Periodontists. All products mentioned are available for purchase at our office. Stop by today and leave with a beautiful, healthy smile!

Bright Smiles Are Good for the Heart, in More Ways Than One!


Medical researchers have found a strong link between oral and heart health. Does this mean that heart disease prevention may start with your brushing and flossing routine? According to experts in the field, maybe.


“For the most part, the data is circumstantial. It’s hard to prove cause and effect,” says Thomas Boyden, Jr., MD. He’s the medical director of preventive cardiology at Spectrum Health Medical Group Cardiovascular Services in Grand Rapids, MI. “However, I think the data is pretty strong and there is definitely a link.”

What is this link? In a word, inflammation, or swelling. Inflammation leads to hardened arteries, or atherosclerosis, which disrupts the flow of blood to your heart and puts you at a greater risk for heart attack and stroke. Inflammation is also a sign of gum disease, of which there are two main types: gingivitis, which leads to red, painful gums and periodontitis, which leads to infected pockets of germy pus. The latter is what raises concern for heart disease. When periodontitis sets in, it allows bacteria and other toxins to spread below the gum line.

“Your gums are very vascular, meaning they’re full of blood vessels. And, your mouth is full of bacteria. If you disrupt the gum layer even a little bit, you’re going to get bacteria in your bloodstream, which can go anywhere and trigger inflammation throughout the body,” Boyden says. “Inflammation is one of the main things that cause damage to blood vessels, including those of the heart.”

Numerous studies have shown that the bacteria found in periodontal disease, including streptococcus sanguis, spreads to the heart and plays a role in strokes. “The two appear to go hand-in-hand,” says Dr. Scott Merritt of Bridgemill Dentistry, “In the absence of gum disease, there is significantly less of these bacteria in the heart.”

Some research suggests that the more bacteria you have from gum disease, the thicker your carotid arteries may be. Thickening of these arteries can lead to a stroke.

While a correlation between oral and heart health has been established, this does not necessarily imply causation. “People with bad periodontal disease tend to have bad health habits in general,” Boyden says. “They aren’t taking care of themselves. Many are smokers. They probably aren’t exercising; they may not be eating well. We know all of those things are some of the strongest predictors of heart disease.” Many with periodontal disease also have diabetes, he adds, which is a strong predictor of heart disease.

While the American Heart Association says there’s no evidence you can prevent heart disease by preventing gum disease, the developing link between oral and heart health adds just another reason to brush and floss everyday as well as to come in for regular check-ups.


Why Dentures May Be a Thing of the Past!

Aside from simply being uncomfortable, there are many reasons that dentures just do not work as well as dental implants. People who have had to transition from natural teeth to dentures experience a huge decrease in the ability to chew. This means that they will have to give up those favorite foods simply because they do not possess the biting force of someone with natural or implant supported teeth. People with natural or implant supported teeth are able to chew with a force of 150 to 250 pounds per square inch. However, in people who have dentures, the p.s.i. is dramatically decreased to 50 p.s.i. and will further diminish over time with the pressure of chewing as it decreases the bone foundation which supports the dentures.

Dentures will slide around in your mouth and cause your gums to become irritated.  This paired with diminished biting pressure will lead to severe discomfort and the inability to chew normally, making eating your favorite foods, such as a good steak, nuts, raw vegetables, corn-on-the-cob, and more, uncomfortable and difficult. The loss in chewing power can lead to a poor diet, one high in carbohydrates, which will negatively affect the health of your entire body.

Dentures can become loose in your mouth and create concern that the dentures will fall out or slip around in your mouth.

You must buy special products to care for your dentures. Messy and sticky special adhesives are needed to secure the dentures to your mouth. Denture cleaners are difficult to use and often require soaking your teeth in them for an extended period of time, leaving your gums exposed.

Another common problem with dentures is facial collapse. It causes a larger crease under your lower lip, more lines at the corner of your mouth, the appearance of your lips will change, and the skin will look saggy on the lower half of your face.

Will all the downsides to dentures, I know what you’re wondering. Are there alternatives to wearing dentures? The answer is yes! Implants can be used in place of dentures. An implant procedure can alleviate all of the discomfort and pain associated with wearing dentures.  Implants are affixed permanently in your mouth making your mouth look and feel natural, as well as allowing you to maintain your ability to chew.

At A New Smile Dental Center, we use state-of-the-art All-on-4® technology. All-on-4® means “All teeth on only 4 dental implants”. This ingenious dental implant protocol makes it possible to provide almost any patient with failing or missing teeth a new, non-removable bridge which is supported by only four strategically placed dental implants. Prior to the research of its inventor, Dr. Paolo Malo it was widely believed by dental professionals that patients needed six, eight, or even more dental implants in order to support a whole set of teeth. But the reasons the All-on-4® procedure is widely considered to be the most significant breakthrough in the field of dental implantology are two-fold:

  • Nearly everyone is a candidate, regardless of how much bone volume you may have lost, without having to undergo bone grafting procedures.
  • Receive teeth the same day! Patients receive a fixed, non-removable bridge on the same day their remaining teeth are removed (if any) and their dental implants are placed!

With this incredible new technology, it should be an easy decision to forego dentures and come in today for your new smile!