Dr. James C. DeFinnis's Dental Blog

Wilkes Barre Family Dentist Dr. James C. DeFinnis

The Elements of a Good Smile

One of the biggest contributors to making a great first impression is the smile. Moreover, your smile can affect not only how other people perceive you but also how you feel about yourself. If you are dissatisfied with your smile, there are things you can do about it, instead of letting your insecurity get the best of you.

Well, what makes a good smile? There are many components, which include facial esthetics, gum esthetics, microesthetics, and macroesthetics. Within all these principles, the teeth play a major part.

For years, cosmetic dentistry has helped people achieve the smiles they want. People who are not content with their smiles can go to the dentist for corrections. Below are considerations dentists can help you with in achieving that near-perfect smile.

Whiteness. The color of the teeth should be balanced with the white of your eyes. This gives a natural, healthy appearance.

Upper Teeth Dominance. A beautiful smile has the upper teeth slightly more dominant than the lower ones.

Gums. They should not be showing too much and the parts that show must have a healthy look and light pink in color.

Tooth Proportion. A good smile has the two front teeth dominant with the others following in a proportional fashion.

Tooth Alignment. The teeth must have a natural-looking alignment.

In all the elements described above, balance is important. Going too far in the corrections will create an unnatural look, defeating the purpose of natural beauty.


April 28, 2015 Posted by | Back Mountain Dental, Cosmetic Dentistry, General Dentistry, Oral Hygiene | , , | Leave a comment

Nutrition Tips from a Dentist in Wilkes-Barre, PA

If you think that regular brushing and flossing are all it takes to keep your teeth and gums healthy, you’re sadly mistaken. While staying true to your dental routine helps a lot, your diet also plays a big role on your dental and oral health. Here are some nutrition tips from a trusted dentist in Wilkes-Barre, PA for you to follow:

Don’t Give in to Your Sweet Tooth

You probably already learned this as a kid, but even adults need a little reminder from time to time. Sugary food and drinks contain acids that can damage your teeth. Keep your sugar consumption at a low level.

Drink Lots of Water

Aside from keeping you hydrated throughout the day, water can also help wash away loose food particles in between your teeth and gum line. Drink a glass or two of water after meals, especially if you’re at work and don’t have time to brush or floss.

Eat a Balanced Diet

A balanced diet promotes overall good health. A diet consisting of junk food and sugary snacks can make your mouth an ideal breeding ground for acid-producing bacteria, which can lead to tooth decay. If it helps, keep track of what you eat and make it a goal to get nutrition from all five major food groups.

Proper nutrition and maintaining your oral health go hand in hand. Visit your dentist twice a year to keep your dental and oral health in check.

April 23, 2015 Posted by | Back Mountain Dental, Cosmetic Dentistry, General Dentistry, Oral Hygiene | , , | Leave a comment

Comfort to Your Anxious Child on First Dental Visit

Dental anxiety or fear is prevalent among children, but without proper dental care, your child is at greater risk of developing oral health problems. Skipping appointments, therefore, isn’t a healthy option. Follow these tips to help manage your child’s dental anxiety.

Show them what to expect.

A child’s anxiety can be eased somewhat when he or she is informed about what to expect in advance. Tell your child in reassuring ways what a dentist will do and what the procedure would feel like, e.g. vibration, taste, and pain; the injection, after all (if you remember) does feel like an ant bite.

Use distractions to divert focus away from fear.

You may also bring your child’s favorite toy that he or she could play with in the waiting room. Dental personnel are trained to engage their little patients in a cheerful discussion to distract and create rapport. They may be asked to visualize an amazing day in the amusement park or the first time they received their favorite toy. Distraction for older children may include video tapes, video games, or television.

Apply sedation dentistry.

Dental fear can be deep-rooted that nothing could seem to make a child relax on the dentist’s chair. If this is the case, it would be better to find a dentist qualified to administer Intravenous (IV) sedation. This technique allows your child to sleep throughout the procedure, and wake up to healthier teeth, with hardly a memory of the process.

April 20, 2015 Posted by | Back Mountain Dental, Cosmetic Dentistry, General Dentistry | , , | Leave a comment

What You Need to Know About Overbites

Does your upper set of teeth overlap the lower, and shows more prominently in a smile? If so, you have a form of dental malocclusion called overbite. Here are three important things you should know about overbites:

# 1 It’s not all in the genes.

If overbites run in your family, chances are you’ve inherited the condition. However, overbites can also develop as a result of bad childhood oral habits, such as long-term pacifier or bottle use, nail biting, tongue thrusting, and thumb sucking. These all exert pressure on the roof of the mouth, altering healthy teeth formation.

# 2 Not only looks are affected.

Everyone has it to a certain degree but in severe cases that include crowded or crooked tooth, the condition becomes more than just a cosmetic issue; it can lead to problems affecting your overall oral health. You may experience discomfort in the jaw and gums, particularly during chewing. Enamel erosion is hastened when teeth overlap. Overbites also increase the risk of bacterial infection and eventually, tooth loss.

# 3 It can be corrected.

There are two types of overbites: skeletal and dental. In skeletal, the problem is the size of the bone itself and can only be corrected with surgery. Whereas, in a dental overbite, merely the upper set of teeth protrudes and can be treated with orthodontic braces, such as Invisalign. Unlike traditional versions, Invisalign is barely visible and is removable, allowing you to eat comfortably and practice oral hygiene.

April 18, 2015 Posted by | Back Mountain Dental, Cosmetic Dentistry, General Dentistry | , , | Leave a comment

Consult a Cosmetic Dentist near Dallas, PA if You Need Veneers Fitted

Determining if veneers are needed starts with a consultation with a local cosmetic dentist around Dallas, PA. This is to make sure it is the appropriate solution for your dental issues. After all, veneers require careful research because what may work for one mouth may not be the best for another.

April 17, 2015 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Wilkes-Barre Dentist: Two Procedures that Make a Great Dental Solution

Dentists and patients, however, will still have some waiting time before this integration would be fully implemented. It would be good to know first how these two technologies have been used separately and how they can benefit you when you consult a dentist around Wilkes Barre for cosmetic treatments.

April 15, 2015 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Nearby Scranton, PA Dentist: What You Have To Know About Wisdom Teeth

When impacted, the wisdom tooth or part of it may be trapped inside the gums, creating a space where bacteria can accumulate. In cases where only a portion of the teeth erupts, a flap may be formed where food particles could get stuck. This would generally be difficult to clean, leading to infection, tooth decay, and immense pain; in addition to foul breath and possible pus discharge. Your trusted dentist near Scranton, PA is likely to recommend extraction before the problem progresses into something worse, such as the development of tumors, extensive tooth decay, or pericoronitis (swelling of the affected gum).

April 13, 2015 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Wilkes-Barre Cosmetic Dentist: 4 Less Known Causes of Discolored Teeth

When you think of teeth stains, soda, coffee, and sweets usually get the blame. This is because of their acidic nature and high chromogen content that causes yellowish teeth. The truth is, there are things that cause those colors on the teeth other than the food you consume. A Wilkes Barre cosmetic dentist from Back Mountain Dental reveals four of the less-popular causes of teeth discoloration.

April 10, 2015 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Common Causes of Toothache

Sharp, nagging toothache—it’s the quintessential dental problem, though not one with only a single cause. Toothaches can come from a wide variety of factors, which can easily range from simple to profound dental conditions.

Decay – Perhaps the most common toothache culprit of all, decay can grow from painless ones (those which only affect the top layer of teeth) to really painful ones that reach deep down to the root, which is extremely sensitive to pain. The deeper the decay goes, the greater the pain becomes.

Abscess – An abscess forms when an infection brews just below the tooth’s root, when the innermost layer of the tooth called the dentin is already infected. An abscess is made up of pus (a combination of white blood cells, dead tissue, and bacteria), and is known for causing extremely painful toothaches—one characterized by a throbbing/pulsating sensation with intermittent sharp pains.

Cracked/Chipped Tooth – When a tooth gets chipped or cracked as a result of a sudden blow, it can become very sensitive due to the exposed dentin. There would be times when a tooth fracture might not be painful, but if the damage reaches the nerves of the teeth, a sufferer is in for a bad day.

Gum Disease – Gum disease doesn’t cause actual toothache per se, but the pain it causes can be interpreted as such (the pain happens in the mouth, after all). This bacterial infection can easily irritate the gums and even develop into an abscess, which can amplify the discomfort greatly.

April 5, 2015 Posted by | Cosmetic Dentistry | , , | Leave a comment

Improving Your Smile with Cosmetic Dentistry

As one of the most central (figuratively and literally) components of your facial appearance, your smile plays a very important role. It allows you to express your feelings particularly when you’re happy, and a charming smile is often enough to win over the attention and/or affection of another.

It can be harsh, though, to be born with crooked and unsightly teeth, which could impair your appearance greatly. Fortunately, you can undergo cosmetic dentistry to have your teeth enhanced and made more aesthetically-pleasing.

Cosmetic dentistry is concerned with the appearance of teeth, and it involves various procedures that fix a patient’s smile. While considered a separate field from general dentistry, it isn’t unusual to find general dentists who practice cosmetic procedures. Often, cosmetic dentistry overlaps with orthodontics—a dentistry specialty in improper bites—and some dentists offer both.

What can cosmetic dentistry fix in your smile? If you have stained and/or yellowing teeth, a cosmetic dentist can offer to whiten it. Are your teeth too damaged to look any appealing? Consider having veneers fitted over your teeth, with help from your dentist. Worried about your misaligned and crooked teeth? Your dentist will have dental braces or aligners that you can use to set your teeth into place.

Whatever your aesthetic problem is with your teeth, a cosmetic dentist has the answer for it.

April 1, 2015 Posted by | Cosmetic Dentistry | , , | Leave a comment