Dental hygienist sedating her patient before treatment

Different Sedation Techniques Our Houston Dentist Offers

Dentist visits are typically dreaded by both our adult patients, as well as our pediatric dentist patients. The main reason for this is because there is a certain level of anxiety associated with dentist visits, and we understand how you feel. Because of this, we offer pediatric sedation dentistry, as well as sedation methods for our adult patients.

What is Dental Sedation?

Dental sedation, otherwise known as sedation dentistry, is the practice of using different methods to ease restlessness and anxiety in our patients. Although we offer sedation to our Houston kids dentist patients, we also offer it to our adult patients when they undergo certain procedures and treatments with our Houston cosmetic dentist. Which sedation method(s) we use will depend on you as the patient and your needs.

Local Anesthesia

Utilizing a local anesthetic is the simplest way to sedate a patient who’s worried about pain. This involves injecting medication in the area where treatment will take place, which temporarily blocks off the nerve endings so they don’t feel pain. The patient, whether pediatric or not, will feel a minor numbing sensation, but it will fade after treatment.

Laughing Gas

We often recommend laughing gas to patients that experience high levels of mental and emotional stress, so it is especially common that we sedate our Houston pediatric dentist patients with laughing gas. This method of pediatric sedation is suitable for patients who can manage to sit still, so if our Houston kids dentist has a patient with a dental phobia, for example, this may not be effective.

General Anesthesia

This method of sedating our Houston pediatric dentist patients, or our Houston cosmetic dentist patients, is necessary for those who are unable to cooperate, such as infants or extremely anxious patients that are in need of major treatment. We also recommend general anesthesia if our patient has a hard time following instructions or staying still.

Victory Smiles Cosmetic Dentist and Pediatric Dentist in Houston Offers Safe Dental Sedation For Patients of All Ages

A lot of people skip their necessary dental cleanings because of their fears and anxieties, but at Victory Smiles, we believe taking care of your dental health is something that should be done regularly for your overall health. Because of this, we are proud to offer multiple forms of sedation dentistry to give you a comfortable experience when you visit us. If it’s been over 6 months since your last visit to the dentist, then please book an appointment with us so we can check on your health.

Young girl comparing metal braces with Invisalign

Invisalign Versus Metal Dental Braces at Our Houston Cosmetic Dentist

“Is Invisalign better than metal braces? Are metal braces more effective? What’s the difference between the two?” 

We get asked this a lot by many of our Houston adult and pediatric patients. Although both straighten your teeth, the way in which they do so are slightly different from each other. Here is how Invisalign Clear Aligners and metal braces compare. 

Invisalign Clear Aligners for Our Kids Dentist Patients and Our Adult Cosmetic Dentist Patients

Invisalign Clear Aligners are very similar to clear plastic retainers. When you undergo this type of braces treatment, we start off by examining your bite and getting impressions of your teeth. With this information, we develop a thorough treatment plan and send the impressions to our lab. The lab will make different aligner trays that are customized for the different phases of your treatment plan.

Metal Braces for Houston Pediatric Dental Patients and Cosmetic Dental Patients

Metal dental braces, on the other hand, metal braces are completely made of metal, as their name implies. They are made up of metal brackets that are placed on each individual tooth and then held in place by a metal archwire, which is meant to gently move your teeth in the right direction in order to make them straight. In order to continue doing this throughout your treatment, our braces dentists will tighten your wire as needed.

The Pros and Cons of Invisalign and Metal Dental Braces

Invisalign Clear Aligners

When it comes to Invisalign, treatment is very subtle. This is perfect for teenagers who are a little self-conscious and for adults who don’t want to draw attention to their braces. Invisalign is to be removed at mealtimes and, if you wear it diligently for 22-24 hours a day, you can afford to skip it on a special occasion, such as prom or a wedding.

As for cons, clear aligners may not be ideal if you are forgetful or worry you may not wear it enough. Additionally, Invisalign works very slowly if your teeth need more alignment, so you may be better off wearing metal braces.

Metal Dental Braces

Metal braces are very versatile. They can be worn for almost all malocclusions, minor and severe, and they will correct the issues in a shorter amount of time. They are bulkier than Invisalign, but the good news is that these days, metal braces are lighter in weight and more comfortable than before, which makes them less of a hassle to wear.

Think You Might Need Dental Braces? Visit Our Houston Cosmetic Dentist For an Evaluation

If you think that it may be time for you or your teen to get braces, then please book an appointment with us so we can begin the process with an evaluation. This will help us determine what might work best for you.

teenage girl picking a shade for teeth whitening

Can Teenagers Get Their Teeth Whitened at Our Houston Cosmetic Dentist Office?

When our Houston dentist performs dental cleanings on teenagers and their parents, our teenaged patients sometimes ask us about whether they can start teeth whitening treatments with our Houston cosmetic dentist, just like their parents do. In short, yes, it is perfectly safe for teenagers to get their teeth whitened, but they need to be mindful.

When Can Teens Start Whitening Their Teeth?

13 years old is the youngest you can get your teeth whitened, but we recommend waiting a little bit longer, preferably until all the permanent adult teeth have fully emerged and settled, and after dental braces treatment is completed. Why wait until the adult teeth have fully settled? Well, adult teeth are larger and have larger nerves, and larger nerves help reduce sensitivity.

Our Houston Cosmetic Dentists Warn Against Over-The-Counter Whitening Treatment

Low-Quality Results

Store-bought treatments are seen as an affordable alternative to in-office teeth whitening, but the lower price reflects the lower quality of your results.

For one, the trays and strips you can find in-store may not fit properly. Sure, this may result in a white smile, but an uneven one. They can even aggravate sensitive teeth and gums, while also risking damage to prior dental work, such as composite (tooth-colored) fillings.

Waste of Money

If you spent money on an over-the-counter teeth whitening treatment and didn’t like the results, repurchasing and trying again may end up being a waste of money again. 

If you were fortunate enough to try these treatments and liked how white your teeth turned out, these results will only last a few weeks, which means you will likely have to keep burning money in order to maintain your teeth. In the long run, professional in-office teeth whitening completed by a trained Houston cosmetic dentist will be cheaper and more effective.

Teeth Whitening for Teenagers at Our Victory Smiles Cosmetic Dentist Office 

When your teenager comes to our Houston cosmetic dentist for teeth whitening, they will get a completely customized treatment that takes into account any current sensitivity, past dental work, and desired results. As a plus, they will typically see desired results within a single visit, and those results will last much longer. If your teenager wants to feel confident with a brighter, whiter smile, then please book an appointment with our Houston cosmetic dentists so we can achieve this safely and effectively.

adult woman getting cosmetic dental veneers placed on her teeth

What to Expect When Getting Dental Veneers at Our Houston Cosmetic Dentist Office

At Victory Smiles Houston Cosmetic Dentist, dental veneers are a very common procedure we offer, but many don’t know much about them unless we have recommended them. Here is what veneers are, why our patients may benefit from them, and what you may expect throughout the procedure.

What Are Dental Veneers and Why do We Recommend Them to Our Houston Dentist Patients?

Dental veneers are a purely cosmetic procedure. Veneers are made up of a super thin and lightweight porcelain shell. They’re glued to the natural teeth in order to make your teeth take on a whiter appearance and become more even in shape.

Veneers help conceal gaps, cracks, and chips in the teeth. They also offer a quick fix for misshaping, staining, crookedness, and even crowding. This makes them an attractive choice for our patients who want to improve the appearance of their smile so they can truly feel confident in it.

What to Expect With Our Houston Dental Veneers Procedure

At Victory Smiles, dental veneers often take two visits to be completed.

At the first visit, we’ll shave down your enamel (outermost layer of your teeth) in order to make room for the veneers to fit comfortably. Afterward, we have to take impressions and send them to our dental lab so they can make sure the veneers you get are a perfect fit to your mouth. This takes some time, and since we shaved the enamel, your teeth will be prone to damage. In order to protect your teeth from damage, though, we’ll provide you with temporary veneers until the ones from the lab are ready.

When it’s time for your second visit, your permanent veneers will be ready and we will place them on the surface of your teeth. At this point, we will evaluate your bite and how comfortable you feel. This enables us to make any necessary adjustments until we get the perfect fit so that you can fully enjoy your smile for several years to come. Once you’re satisfied, we will use a dental-grade glue to securely bond the veneers to your teeth.

Do You Think Veneers Might Make You Confident In Your Smile? Come See Our Houston Cosmetic Dentist

If you have any of the aforementioned flaws in your teeth and believe dental veneers will restore your smile, then please book an appointment with us so we can begin with a consultation and discuss your needs and goals. We look forward to bringing back your smile.

composite fillings comparing to traditional amalgum fillings

Composite Fillings at Our Houston Pediatric Dentist Office and How They Compare to Traditional Ones

At Victory Smiles Pediatric Dentist in Houston, Texas, we offer high quality pediatric dental care. One of our most common procedures is that of composite fillings, which are a viable alternative to traditional fillings.

What are Traditional Fillings for Kids?

It’s easy for young kids to get cavities if they consume a lot of sugar, such as candy and snacks or beverages. They are especially vulnerable to cavities if they struggle to floss and brush properly, so their parents often choose traditional fillings. Traditional fillings are known as "amalgam" and they are usually silver in color. Amalgam fillings have been popular for over 100 years because they are inexpensive and effective. On the downside, though, they are very obvious when the patient is laughing or talking, which may lead our patients to feel insecure in their smile years later if they have multiple fillings. However, dentistry is always evolving and advancing, meaning better alternatives are available, such as the tooth-colored fillings we use today known as composite fillings.

What are Composite Fillings at our Houston Kids Dentist?

The greatest benefit of utilizing composite fillings is that they match the color of your child’s teeth, making them barely noticeable, if at all. They are called composite fillings because they are made from a blend (which we call ‘composite’) of plastic resins and silica fillers, which naturally produce a color that is similar to our natural teeth.

In addition to the cosmetic benefit of being more subtle, our Houston pediatric dentists also prefer using composite fillings because they allow us to preserve more of the tooth. When using traditional amalgam fillings, we have to remove the decay and even some healthy parts of the tooth to make space for the amalgam to sit and settle into the tooth. With composite fillings, it isn’t necessary to remove parts of the tooth. Plus, they immediately bond to the affected tooth and last longer than amalgam fillings. One more benefit that tooth-colored fillings offer is that they even strengthen the affected teeth.

Long-Lasting Cavity Fillings by Our Pediatric Dentists at Victory Smiles in Houston

It's important for children to come in for their semiannual teeth cleanings and also receive x-rays so we can spot cavities early on. In doing, we can save the affected tooth and neither you nor your child will have to worry about the cavity worsening and turning into the need for a root canal. Please book an appointment with us if your child is experiencing a toothache. We will complete a dental exam to confirm they have a cavity and then fix it with our tooth-colored fillings.