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How to Choose a Dentist

Choosing a dentist is an important decision that can have long lasting effects on your dental health.  The best time to choose a dentist is when you don’t need one.  This gives you time to do your research and prevent “emergencies” from arising.  Here are some tips to help you make your decision.

Credentials

Make sure the dentist has a degree from a reputable, accredited dental school and are licensed in your state.  Check online review sites such as Yelp to give you an idea of the overall patient experience or Google their name.

Convenience

Choose a dentist conveniently located, relatively close to your home or work. Their office hours should be conducive to your schedule as well.   If you have to travel too far or miss work, you’re more likely to miss appointments and regular checkups.

Find out if the dentist participates in your dental insurance program, if you have one.

Ask them questions:

  • What is their approach to preventive dentistry?
  • What type of anesthesia is the dentist certified to administer?  Are they equipped to help you stay pain free and relaxed during your procedures?
  • What are their areas of expertise?  How much experience do they have with treating your particular complaint?
  • Discuss fees and financing options prior to procedures.

The Dental Office

Is the office clean and orderly?  Is equipment well maintained?  Is the staff helpful and friendly?

Your dental visits should be pleasant experience.  Talk to the dentist and make sure you are comfortable with him or her and you have a good rapport.

Beware of…

  • Dentists that make outrageous claims.  If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
  • Dentists that hard sell vitamins and dietary supplements.
  • Dentists that routinely use IV sedation or overemphasize “twilight sleep.”

Take the time to find a dentist that you are comfortable with so you’re likely to go to routine visits.  Early detection and maintenance will prevent pain, expense and disease in the future.

 

A New Start With Cosmetic Dentistry

Although recovery from drug abuse can be successful, the damaging effects can be long lasting.  One of the most obvious, lasting effects is damage to teeth; a condition most commonly seen in crystal meth and heroin addicts and referred to as “meth mouth.”

Dr. Peter Kyriakakis worked with patient Casey Kunishige to restore his smile after Casey won his long battle with crystal meth addiction.    The Honolulu Star Bulletin reported on it, you can read it here.

Drug abusers, particularly meth and heroin abusers don’t tend to take care of their teeth.  Ignoring teeth that are sick will lead to serious, life-threatening infections.

Dr. Peter extracted the worst of Casey’s 10 teeth and saved as much as he could so Casey would have some teeth left to eat with.  Dr. Peter fitted Casey with partial dentures for his upper front teeth and one for the lower back teeth.  The result; Casey has a natural looking, healthy smile.

In today’s world, people tend to judge others by their appearance.  People assume missing and rotten teeth are signs of drug abuse or extreme poverty, and can make it difficult to get a job or make new social connections.  Even when patients have gone through treatment and recovery, they can wear the effects of their past on their face.  A thorough dental treatment plan and cosmetic dental procedures often help to give patients the boost in confidence they need to face the world and move forward with their lives.

 

Is Invisalign Right For You?

Teeth straightening or braces are not just for teens anymore.  Adults are more conscious then ever about achieving that Hollywood smile.  With new advancements like Invisalign, braces don’t have to be painful and dorky looking.  Straight teeth are more affordable and convenient then they’ve ever been.

With new enhancements to the technology, severe cases can be treated.  But your teeth don’t have to be a hot mess to take advantage of Invisalign.  With teeth, subtle corrections can make all the difference in the world when it comes to a beautiful, healthy smile.  Here are some common conditions we see that can be easily treated.

Teeth Crowding

Overly crowded teeth occurs when there isn’t enough room within your jaw for all your teeth to fit normally.  If left untreated, this can get worse over time and result in severely crooked teeth.  Over crowding can lead also to plaque accumulation, increased chance of gum disease and tooth decay.

 Overbite

An overjet, or what is commonly referred to as an overbite occurs when the upper teeth bite over the lower teeth.  This can put wear on the lower teeth and lead to painful jaw and joint problems.

Underbite

As with an overbite, an underbite occurs when the lower teeth protrude past the upper front teeth and can lead to the same problems as an overbite.

Open Bite

An open bite occurs when some of the top teeth are unable to make contact with the lower opposing teeth to make for a proper bite.  In some cases this can be caused by excessive thumb-sucking and lead to pain when chewing, speech impediments and TMJ.

Gapped Teeth

Gaps between teeth and missing teeth can lead to gum problems and increased risk of periodontal disease because of the lack of protection by the teeth to the gums.

Crossbite

A crossbite occurs when the upper teeth bites on the inside of some of the lower teeth either on the front or sides of the mouth, caused by the upper and lower jaws being misaligned.  The effects of crossbite can lead to wearing of the teeth, gum disease and bone loss.

As you can see, having crooked teeth can affect more than just your smile; your dental health can be at risk.

Finding the right dentist can have a big impact as well.  Look for one that understands your needs and has experience and knowledge with teeth straightening procedures.  Call us at (808)791-0200 or click here to schedule an appointment to see if Invisalign is the right solution for you.

Peter Kyriakakis

Peter Kyriakakis, D.M.D

Education

  • University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey
  • University of Scranton, Bio-Physics
  • Coler-Goldwater Memorial Hospital, General Practice Residency

Professional Licensing

  • Hawaii
  • New Jersey
  • New York

Publications:

Nicholas Kyriakakis, D.M.D.

Education

  • University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey,
  • University of Scranton Biology
  • NYU Medical Center- Bellvue Hospital, General Practice Residency

Professional Licensing

  • Hawaii
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Member of international congress of oral implantologist
  • Invisalign certified, nitrous sedation certified, OSHA certification