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Dentist in White Lake MI
David J. Campbell DDS
7110 Highland Road
White Lake, MI 48383
(248) 887-8387
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Posts for: January, 2015

By David J. Campbell DDS
January 28, 2015
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: fillings  

It takes a lot of skill, experience, talent and artistry to create tooth restorations that look so natural that no one can tell them apart from the originals. To do so requires understanding of the normal anatomy of a tooth as well as of the interactions of light and color.

How the anatomy of a tooth determines color

The color that we perceive when looking at a tooth results from the combined appearance of the tooth’s center core (dentin layer) and its covering enamel. Going from the outside in, the enamel is made of tightly packed crystals of calcium, which cause it to be one of the hardest substances naturally produced by animals. The crystals are also responsible for a tooth’s brilliance and translucence. The dentin is more like bone, a porous living tissue composed of microscopic tubes, interspersed with more calcium crystals. In the very center of the tooth is a central chamber containing the pulp and nerves.

Each of these layers has its own physical and optical properties. Since the enamel is translucent and the dentin is more opaque, most of the tooth’s color comes from the dentin and is transmitted through the enamel layer. Factors that affect this transmission include the thickness and age of the enamel as well as external tooth whitening.

If the enamel is more translucent, more of the color of the dentin shows through. If it is more opaque, the enamel absorbs and reflects light so that less color is visible and the enamel looks brighter.

The language of color composition and reflected light

Color means the whole spectrum in the rainbow. The spectrum is made up of the three primary colors — red, blue, and green. When all are combined, they create white light.

Hue refers to the brightest forms of the colors. The color we perceive depends on the dominant wavelength of light that is reflected by an object.

Value refers to a color’s lightness or darkness. A brighter color has a higher value.

Chroma is the amount of identifiable hue in a color. An achromatic color (without hue) appears gray.

Saturation is a measure of a color’s intensity.

This terminology of color is used not only by dentists and dental technicians, but also by a wide range of artists. It implies expertise and understanding of how colors work, how they vary and change and affect one another.

Contact us today to schedule an appointment or to discuss your questions about bonding to repair chipped teeth. You can also learn more by reading the Dear Doctor article, “Artistic Repair of Front Teeth with Composite Resin.”

By Dr. David J. Campbell
January 27, 2015
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: teeth whitening  

Teeth WhiteningThe process of dental bleaching is widely considered to be the fastest, safest and most-cost effective way of improving your smile. Tooth whitening has become increasingly popular; it is now the most sought-after cosmetic dental procedure. Whether your teeth are discolored due to smoking, drinking coffee, medication or genetics, they can now be several shades lighter in as little as an hour. If whitening your teeth at your White Lake family dentist has been on your mind, consider these benefits:

First impression

Everyone knows the catchphrase from the old shampoo commercial: "You never get a second chance to make a first impression." This concept especially holds true for the condition of your teeth. They are often your first feature people notice on meeting you, and if your teeth are discolored, your initial impact might not be as remarkable as it should be. However, investing in dental bleaching can now mean your second impression will be noticeably and positively different.

Confidence boost

With your teeth free of stains and discolorations, you will likely feel more comfortable smiling and talking. These features can make a person appear more approachable than someone who is taking extra measures to hide their imperfect teeth.

Easy Accessibility

It is estimated that more than 100 million Americans use some sort of tooth-whitening product. Because of their obvious popularity, it has become extremely easy and affordable to maintain a brighter smile. From gum and toothpastes to bleaching strips and laser whitening, there is a bleaching product for every budget. However, most dental professionals, including your Western Michigan dentist, will suggest an in-office procedure as the safest and most long-lasting option. At-home products can cause mild, but somewhat painful chemical burns if not applied with care. With trained professionals administering the bleaching agent, starting by applying a protective coating over your gums, your risk of discomfort is minimal.

If your habits or family history have left you with discolored teeth, discuss the options for whitening with David J Campbell DDS, your White Lake family dentist, at your next appointment!

By David J. Campbell DDS
January 13, 2015
Category: Dental Procedures

Everyone knows that George Washington wore false teeth. Quick, now, what were our first President's dentures made of?

Did you say wood? Along with the cherry tree, that's one of the most persistent myths about the father of our country. In fact, Washington had several sets of dentures — made of gold, hippopotamus tusk, and animal teeth, among other things — but none of them were made of wood.

Washington's dental troubles were well documented, and likely caused some discomfort through much of his life. He began losing teeth at the age of 22, and had only one natural tooth remaining when he took office. (He lost that one before finishing his first term.) Portraits painted several years apart show scars on his cheeks and a decreasing distance between his nose and chin, indicating persistent dental problems.

Dentistry has come a long way in the two-and-a-half centuries since Washington began losing his teeth. Yet edentulism — the complete loss of all permanent teeth — remains a major public health issue. Did you know that 26% of U.S. adults between 65 and 74 years of age have no natural teeth remaining?

Tooth loss leads to loss of the underlying bone in the jaw, making a person seem older and more severe-looking (just look at those later portraits of Washington). But the problems associated with lost teeth aren't limited to cosmetic flaws. Individuals lacking teeth sometimes have trouble getting adequate nutrition, and may be at increased risk for systemic health disorders.

Fortunately, modern dentistry offers a number of ways that the problem of tooth loss can be overcome. One of the most common is still — you guessed it — removable dentures. Prosthetic teeth that are well-designed and properly fitted offer an attractive and practical replacement when the natural teeth can't be saved. Working together with you, our office can provide a set of dentures that feel, fit, and function normally — and look great too.

There are also some state-of-the art methods that can make wearing dentures an even better experience. For example, to increase stability and comfort, the whole lower denture can be supported with just two dental implants placed in the lower jaw. This is referred to as an implant supported overdenture. This approach eliminates the need for dental adhesives, and many people find it boosts their confidence as well.

If you have questions about dentures, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Removable Full Dentures” and “Implant Overdentures for the Lower Jaw.”

By David J Campbell DDS
January 05, 2015
Category: Dental Procedures

While brushing your teeth at least twice a day is an important step to maintaining your oral health, how you brush your teeth is also just as important. Our White Lake family dentist practice debunks the top five myths we often hear regarding tooth brushing.

Myth 1: Stiffer toothbrush bristles are better.

If you think firm toothbrush bristles are the best option, think again. The American Dental Association recommends using soft toothbrush bristles instead. These bristles are less likely to irritate or damage your gums.

Myth 2: Electric toothbrushes are best.

As long as you’re brushing - and brushing properly - either a traditional toothbrush or electric one will do. Some of our White Lake family dentist patients find using an electric toothbrush easier. This includes patients who may have arthritis or who have difficulty manipulating the toothbrush.

Myth 3: It doesn’t matter how long you brush.

Simply swiping a toothbrush over your teeth does not mean they are clean. Aim to brush for at least two minutes at a time to most effectively brush your teeth.

Myth 4: Always start brushing in the same place.

While it’s good to be in the habit of brushing, you should try to mix up where you start brushing. This helps you to be more conscious of how you are brushing and ensures you brush all the surfaces of your teeth.

Myth 5: You don’t need to floss if you brush regularly.

Even if you brush like a professional, you still need to floss. Flossing can get in hard-to-reach places that your toothbrush may not be able to access. Taking the time to floss regularly is just as important as brushing regularly.

For more information on preventive dental care or to make a dentist’s appointment, please call our White Lake family dentist office at (248) 887-8387.