Gateway Dental is now Gateway Oaks Family Dentistry!

logoIt is with great pleasure to inform you that we, Gateway Dental,  have changed our business name to Gateway Oaks Family Dentistry. Please note, however, that our address has not changed.To celebrate our name change the Natomas Chamber of Commerce will hold a ribbon cutting ceremony on Feb. 12 at 9 a.m.

Gateway Oaks Family Dentistry believes the new name change, interior remodeling and additions to the staff, including an associate doctor, will enable a higher of level care for our patients and the Sacramento area. “Not only is our office state-of-the-art, we now have a full and highly-capable staff, and the latest in technology to provide the best patient experience,” Dr. Hoang Truong  said.

Our new name and logo looks great, but we’re most excited about the increased level of care we’re bringing to our patients.” By adding orthodontic and implant services and additional doctors we help keep convenience of more availability, plus same location, familiar doctors and staff that you already love, and maintaining affordable prices as well. We would like to thank you for your support as we implement these changes!

A Grand Re-Opening Celebration and Open House is in the works so please stay tuned for more details! For more information, call your Sacramento dentist at 916-649-0249.  Check out our new website: www.GatewayOaksDental.com!

Why Healthy Teeth is my New Year’s Resolution

The end of 2012 is right around the corner, as I celebrate and reminisce about the last 12 months I begin to plan for the next 12 months. How can I make them better than the last? Things always come up that I never planned for. This year has been far more of an adventure than I had ever dreamed of.  One of those unplanned but welcomed surprises was when I got hired on as the Public Relations Director for a dental office in Sacramento, California. I have quickly developed a passion for encouraging our community to make healthy teeth and gums their priority.

I have a confession; before I started working in the dental industry, I did not even have a regular dentist. Every month I was paying for dental insurance I never used, the only time I thought about the dentist was when a tooth started hurting, which is usually a sign that a person has waited too long.  I regularly do my part by brushing my teeth every day, not always flossing as much as I should. Recently I have realized that I have not been doing enough to keep my teeth as healthy as I need them to be to last me my whole life. It was my lack of knowledge that had led me to believe that I could avoid going to the dentist on a regular basis.

My New Year’s resolution is to start taking better care of my teeth and gums, because having a healthy smile has a whole string of psychological and physical effects connected to it!

I want to keep my teeth for the rest of my life. As my body works day in and day out to clean my teeth, the interaction between food and saliva creates bacteria and acid. If the bacteria and plaque are left to build up and get between my gums, the acid can begin to eat away at the bone structure that is keeping my teeth secure. It can happen with virtually no symptoms and lead to gum disease. Although gum disease is treatable, bone loss is irreversible and can lead to the eventual loss of teeth. Not only can plaque cause the loss of teeth, it is bad for the heart.

Have you ever experience bleeding gums when you floss? Well, that opening leads straight to the blood stream that is an open door to plaque and bacteria. The same plaque that builds up on your teeth builds up on your arteries once it enters the bloodstream. Clogged and hardened arteries can lead to high blood pressure, or worse, a heart attack. Proving that taking care of your teeth is taking care of your heart.

And the number one reason why I am choosing to take better care of my teeth this year…

Having a bright and healthy smile makes me feel good!  When I am confident about my smile, I am ready for any challenge that I might face, from job interviews to first dates. The mouth is usually a main point of focus when socializing, it makes sense why feeling self-conscious about teeth can be harmful. Other people notice and are attracted to the cool courage a confident smile can bring. It boosts my self esteem and helps to keep my spirit lifted all day long.

So, while you are reflecting on 2012 and looking forward to 2013, think about the simple changes you can make in your life to make you feel good, look good and live healthy!

Happy New Year!!

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Mia is a first time Public Relations Director. She has always had a passion for the health and happiness of her community.  We are excited to have her on board! Welcome to the Gateway Dental Team!

No Cavities? You Can Thank The Fluoride!

People fall into three categories, there’s the “What the heck is fluoride” category, the “NO! I don’t want fluoride” category, and the “Duh, give me the fluoride” category. Although we’re hoping that our patients fall into the latter of the three we know that certainly isn’t the case. Our office is in Sacramento County, a county that does not fluoridate its water. An interesting concept considering that the centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) calls fluoridation “one of the 10 most valuable public health measures of the 20th century.” (Read that here: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/00056796.htm)

What’s all the fuss about anyway? Fluoride was introduced and the rates of tooth decay decreased significantly in communities who adopted fluoridated drinking water. Fluoridated drinking water was so successful that soon it seemed everything contained fluoride:  orange juice, milk, toothpastes, drops, gels, and ingestible tablets. So while decay was on the decline, over fluoridation was on the rise.Fluoride In Water

This sparked an enormous debate that is still going strong and is not wavering. Over fluoridation called fluorosis, can create dark spots or white spots on the teeth because fluoride used too much will be poisonous. Fluorosis is rarely a result of fluoridated drinking water.  Just like one drink at the end of a long day is fine, 19 drinks will kill you. The CDC, American Dental Association (ADA), and most national health agencies endorse fluoride.

Think about this, less tooth decay means less visits to the dentist and less of your money going to the dentist, but yet all the dental associations and all the dentists you know ENCOURAGE you to get fluoride. That must mean that is a beneficial mineral for your teeth.

Fluoride provided in the office is not swallowed; it is applied topically, just like toothpaste. The fluoride helps to strengthen your teeth by filling the porous surfaces of your teeth with vitamins and minerals. According to the CDC, every $1 invested in fluoridated saves approximately $38 in dental treatment costs.

But still, this effort to fluoride communities has been called an unconstitutional form of mass medication and the culprit for medical issues such as AIDS, Down syndrome, all forms and cancer, the list goes on. Although no scientific data validates these claims, fluorosis (over fluoridation) does occur. Therefore, babies younger than 6 months old should not be given fluoride, their formula should not be prepared with fluoridated water and children that are younger than 2 years of age are advised not to use fluoridate toothpaste. For all children, toothpaste use should be monitored, kept out of their reach, and made sure to be spit out.

For information on flossing visit this article: https://bestsacramentodentist.wordpress.com/2012/08/27/irritated-bleeding-gums-and-flossing_sacramentodentist/

Do You Really Want to Keep your Teeth? Deep Cleaning Explained.

Sacramento DentistOn a recent trip back to visit family I encountered my kooky Great Aunt, let’s just call her Ivy. Ivy is an all-round entertaining lady. She could keep you talking for hours and comes up with some of the most ridiculous things. Upon telling her that I work for a dentist she blurts out, “You don’t work for 1-800-Dentist, do you!?”

Well, no, we are not affiliated with them but I was curious what caused her outburst. Upon further examination she said that recently her and her husband went to the dentist and “would you buh-lieve they wanted $250 for a cleaning, per quadrant!?” I don’t need to tell you the conversation that ensued that ended in Aunt Ivy refuting everything I said with, “I DON’T GET PLAQUE ON MY TEETH!” An odd statement considering that every single person on the planet has plaque on their teeth. Oh, Aunt Ivy.

When plaque gets under the gums where you can’t see it and can’t clean it you start to get irritation and bleeding in your gums. This is the early stages of gingivitis. When you have gingivitis your hygienist will want to give you a deep cleaning. They might also want you to use a wash called Chlorohexidine. Three out of four adults have some form of gum disease.Sacramento Dentist

Schedule your appointment today

Your body is working feverishly to clean your teeth and the interaction between the food and the saliva creates bacteria and acid. If nothing is done about this it can begin to erode your bone structure. The acid begins to drip down your teeth and starts to eat away at the bone that is holding on to your teeth. Acid. Pretty nasty stuff. It eats through everything, including bone.

Here’s the tricky part, until someone’s condition get very bad they have virtually no symptoms. If gum disease is caught in time it can be stopped and steps can be taken to improve your condition. But, sadly, bone loss is irreversible.

In addition to keeping your teeth from falling out, or getting loose, a deep cleaning will help permanent crowns and bridges adhere to your teeth and last longer. It might help take care of that bad breath, too.

A deep cleaning will take approximately three hours where as a regular cleaning without x-rays will only take about 50 minutes. You are numbed with anesthetic and the hygienist cleans off the roots of the tooth.

I know what you are thinking. You brush your teeth every day, you’ve never had a cavity, you floss every now and then and maybe you even believe that you don’t get plaque on your teeth. Good for you! But that doesn’t mean you can skip your regular teeth cleanings every six months. Hygienists have special tools that get heavy plaque off of your teeth. They also have the ability to see and reach things that you cannot.

Sacramento Dentist

Real Gateway Dental patient who received a deep cleaning. The patient was experiencing bleeding when brushing and flossing and had deep pockets of 5-6 millimeters (1-3 millimeters is great, anything more than 4 should require immediate attention).

The biggest mistake a patient can make is to not maintain a good hygiene program with the hygienist following the deep cleaning. After the cleaning your hygienist will want to see you three months later to clean the teeth again. More often than not it isn’t covered by insurance which is why many patients do not keep up on it. But, coming back every three months for a year will restore your gums to their better condition, will close the deep pockets created by the bacteria, and will help reduce the amount of bacteria that can get in there again.

If you were told you needed a deep cleaning, do not wait. Aunt Ivy will be sorry.

You can call 916-649-0249 if you have more questions and we’ll be happy to help you.

Oral Sedation Dentistry – Small Steps to Being Happy at the Dentist

A dentist who provides oral sedation is like a magician waiving a magic wand over all the fearful patients who have avoided the dentist. Oral Sedation cases range from mild to full-mouth but you will never know unless you call and make that first step.
Watch the entire process here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x4rLa9f7ANk

Oral Conscious Sedation

  1. The first step is to find a dental provider near you. Sedationcare.com can help you find a sedation provider in your zip code. When you are ready, you will call the provider and their sedation
  2. At your first appointment you will receive a full set of x-rays and receive a full examination by the doctor. The doctor will want to take many photographs which can be invasive. But not to worry, these pictures will allow you to see exactly what the doctor is seeing so you are not in the dark about the condition of your oral health.The doctor may take you into a consultation room to go over your options as far as what needs to be addressed immediately and what can be done at another appointment.  You will fill out your paperwork and set up your payment arrangement.  Be prepared for lots and lots of paperwork.
  3. At your first appointment you will receive a full set of x-rays and receive a full examination by the doctor. The doctor will want to take many photographs which can be invasive. But not to worry, these pictures will allow you to see exactly what the doctor is seeing so you are not in the dark about the condition of your oral health. The doctor may take you into a consultation room to go over your options as far as what needs to be addressed immediately and what can be done at another appointment.  You will fill out your paperwork and set up your payment arrangement.  Be prepared for lots and lots of paperwork.
  4. Twelve hours prior to your oral sedation appointment you will take your first dose of medication. After this point the patient should not eat or drink anything. The next morning, one hour prior to your appointment, you will crush up a pill and put it under your tongue and allow the pill to dissolve. Upon arriving to your appointment your doctor will administer the remaining dose(s) of medication.  Each person’s dosages of medication prescribed to them will be different based on the person’s tolerance level, weight, and current drugs that they take. Regardless of the type of drug and amount prescribed the way the medication is taken will always be the same.
  5. You will be seated in the dental chair and will wear a blood pressure cuff and blood oxygen monitor through the entirety of your stay. This is required in oral conscious sedation to ensure that you are getting the adequate amount of oxygen required. Don’t worry- an oxygen tank is there for you should you need it.
  6. Your memory of your appointment will be faint, if one exists at all. You will also need to coordinate a driver to drop you off and pick you up from your appointment. They will not need to stay with you the entire time. The sedation team will be able to contact them to let them know you are ready to be picked up.
  7. Immediately following your oral sedation appointment you will want your driver to get you something soft to eat – think soup, ice cream, mashed potatoes. You will most likely return home and sleep. You will look alert to your driver but they should not be fooled, you are highly woozy. This is not the time to make important life decisions.
  8. The following day you will be normal. You will be able to go to work, go to the gym, go on vacation, and do anything else that you normally would be able to do. The only reason that you may have to return to your dental professional is to adjust the “bite” which is referring to the way the temporary crowns and fillings sit inside your mouth. If you bite is off you will experience pain, discomfort and headaches. Adjusting your bite is a simple 10 minute procedure so you should call your doctor and get in as soon as you can to avoid any added pain.

Oral conscious sedation

Oral Conscious Sedation Dentistry is gaining popularity in the U.S. and is really a good option for anyone who has time constraints and only wants one day off of work to complete tons of dental treatment. Also, you don’t have to be afraid of the dentist anymore!
Call (916) 649-0249 for your consultation today. Gateway Oaks Family DentistryHoang Truong DDS, provide oral conscious sedation to anyone who is interested, regardless of their motivations. Call today.

Teeth Whitening – Three Options to a Brighter Smile

Seriously, is there a better accessory to that glowing skin that we are all blessed with every summer than a perfectly white smile? I say no, but if you said “six-pack abs” I wouldn’t disagree.

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Really though a perfectly white smile is attainable with the technology that is readily available to ordinary people, like you and me.  Celebrities, other rich guys and their trophy wives are no longer the only people that can enjoy teeth that are NOT stained by years of coffee, wine, and tobacco. You can, too!

There are three types of whitening that you should consider: in-office, professional teeth whitening, at-home whitening trays from the dentist, and teeth whitening strips.

Option 1: In-office teeth whitening. If you are getting ready for a photo shoot, a wedding, a vacation, or any other milestone event the only way to go is an in-office professional teeth whitening at the dentist. You are looking at a $500-$700 bill but the results are instant and will continue to get better over the course of the next two weeks.

Option 2: Take-Home Teeth Whitening Trays. Have an event coming up in a month that you are preparing for? I mean really preparing, like, have your outfit purchased, hair appointment made, car rental scheduled and guaranteed prepared. If so, then take-home bleach trays from the dentist are an awesome option. They come at a significantly lower cost than in-office bleaching and can be used for as long as you want, provided that your teeth don’t shift. Your dentist will make an impression of your teeth to create the trays and they should be ready within 24 hours. Your teeth will reach the maximum whiteness after approximately two weeks.

The bleach that you will use at home has a lower concentration of hydrogen peroxide. You can purchase bleach from your dentist, dental assistant, or hygienist anytime that you want. Bleach trays are also a good idea for those who dropped a big payment on the in-office bleaching and who would like to maintain their white smile for years.

Option 3: Teeth Whitening strips.  Just want whiter teeth but are in no rush? Guess what? Those whitening strips work wonders at removing surface stains for anyone. Smoker? Coffee drinker? Wino? Soda pop lover? You are in luck! Whitening strips cost anywhere between $35-$50 for a two-to-four week supply. Read the instructions carefully for how long and frequently you should wear the strips. Some teeth whitening strips requiring wearing them two times a day for 14 days straight while others are less strict, and also less effective. Teeth whitening strips are also really effective at maintaining a white smile.

Who shouldn’t buy in to teeth whitening: those with veneers, tetracycline staining, or dead teeth. There is nothing any dentist can do to make your teeth whiter. See a dentist near you to visit your options.

No teeth whitening toothpaste or magic teeth whitening light will replace regular dental visits. One might be surprised at the amount of surface stains a simple teeth cleaning will remove.

Get your tan on, folks! And take along a white smile and some sunscreen.

Dos and Don’ts for Healthy Teeth & Gums

We love reading SHAPE magazine around here so we were pretty happy to see this article: “10 Bad (Dental) Habits to Break”. The SHAPE magazine article outlines 10 very specific ways to treat your teeth. No guess work, love that! You can read about why the following 10 things are so dang important.

Teeth Cleaning Sacramento

  1. Brushing too hard
  2. The wrong toothpaste
  3. Forgoing Floss
  4. Drinking lots of soda
  5. Foods that stain
  6. Frequent snacking
  7. Using teeth as tools (seen this before?)
  8. Neglecting problems
  9. Avoiding the dentist
  10. Ignoring your lips

If you are experiencing pain and are in need of an emergency dentist in Sacramento or you are looking to establish a new dentist in Sacramento you can visit us today!

Call 916-649-0249 Today!

Tricky Tooth Killers

There are attacks on own teeth everywhere we look: the food we eat, the medications we take, our hormones. Silent, and tricky, these tooth killers can harm you in ways you haven’t thought of before.

Teeth Whitening at the Mall:  Does knowing that they are more than willing to pour 35% hydrogen peroxide on your gum disease and cavities make you feel good? If it does than you need to research about the effects of teeth whitening on your oral health. If it doesn’t, you’re my kind of patient. These types of services are unaccredited and are being shut down all over the country. A typical teeth whitening requires a dental office visit, exam, and any cavities or gum disease to be treated prior to receiving the bleaching treatment.Oral Health and Diabetes (click here for teeth whitening tips)

Sports Drinks & Energy Drinks: these highly acidic beverages create pitting in the teeth and other forms of tooth erosion. Pitting and erosion results in your teeth being uneven on the surface and they are more likely to stain easier and more quickly. In addition, erosion makes your teeth more susceptible to decay. If you must drink these highly acidic drinks do it through a straw to avoid pitting and tooth erosion on the fronts of your teeth.

Pregnancy:  your hormones play a gigantic part in your oral health. Increased levels of pregnancy hormones progesterone and estrogen boost circulation, which brings more blood to the gums and puts you at a higher risk for infection. Pregnant women with bloody gums are significantly more likely to have a preterm baby, according to many studies. If you are trying to get pregnant your best bet is to visit the dentist so that you can address all your oral health issues before you conceive. (Or read our preggo article here) 

Medications: many medications and diet supplements have side effects such as decreasing salivary flow in the mouth. The lack of saliva can lead to dry mouth, bacteria, and tooth decay. Products like biotene can help with dry mouth so tell your dentist if you are experiencing dry mouth.

Using teeth as tools: using your teeth in absence of other tools might cause them some harm.  My grandma has a perfect triangle in between her two front teeth at the very bottom where she keeps her pins for sewing. See my granny uses her teeth for all sorts of things, like tearing open packages, biting her nails, and that’s just the small stuff. Her teeth have become her go-to place to store the needles for sewing which have created a permanent change in her teeth. Using your teeth for anything other than chewing is a bad idea: it can lead to chipping and cracking.

Are you a suspect in these dental crimes? Studies prove that taking better care of your teeth can improve your overall health, especially if you are pre-diabetic or your family has a history of heart disease. If it has been more than six months since your last dental exam and cleaning call a dentist near you today. (or read our oral health article) 

Oral Health & Pregnancy: Prevention is the Key to Keep Your Teeth

Tending to your teeth is far down on your list of concerns when you are pregnant. But, it should be closer to the top. Good dental care during pregnancy is essential, not only for your own health but also for your baby’s.

Female Dentist in SacramentoGrowing belly. Random hair growth. Swollen breasts. With all the extreme changes that occur in pregnancy, it would be nice not to worry about the things in your body that stay constant, like, oh… the inside of your mouth?

Sorry, you’re not that lucky. Like it or not, even your gums are hijacked by pregnancy hormones. Increased levels of pregnancy hormones progesterone and estrogen boost circulation, which brings more blood to the gums, according to Sally J. Cram, DDS, a periodontist and spokesperson for the American Dental Association.

Low levels of plaque that might have been insignificant before you conceived can cause worrisome problems now. In fact, most pregnant women experience some degree of gingivitis, which is identified by red, swollen gums that bleed easily. Left untreated, gingivitis can escalate to gum disease. So why is this a big deal? Women with this condition are significantly more likely to have a preterm baby, according to many studies, including one published last year in the Journal of Periodontology.

If you skip brushing or flossing for just one night, within 24 hours your gums may be red, swollen, or bleeding. If you continue to put off brushing and flossing, you could develop gum disease, or periodontitis, which can cause bone loss. Bone loss equals tooth loss.

There are other barriers than just your unusual hormones. The carbohydrates you may rely on to suppress nausea (crackers, anyone?) also bathe your teeth in sugars. Pair that with the morning sickness and heartburn and your mouth is a breeding ground for bacteria.

Gum disease can also trigger a premature birth. In a study of 1300 women who gave birth, studied the dental records of the 13 percent who had delivered prematurely. They found that those who had periodontal disease were four to seven times more likely deliver prematurely than women with healthy gums.

Here’s how to keep your teeth healthy:

  • Brush and floss at least two or three times a day. However inconvenient, the reality is that it is important that you give your teeth and gums more attention.
  • Switch to a softer toothbrush if brushing makes your gums bleed.
  • Don’t skip your annual dental checkup. Try to time it to take place during your second trimester.
  • Seek an appropriate level of care, your dentist will advise you on what that is. If you’ve had gum problems in the past, you may need more frequent monitoring. If you have larger treatment you can be treated while you’re pregnant, though that’s no guarantee and special precautions will need to be taken.
  • Make sure your diet includes plenty of vitamin C.

If you show them a little extra love you can keep your teeth and gums in tip-top condition during pregnancy.