The majority of patients who fear the dentist report a negative childhood dental experience caused their phobia. At Donald Marks Family Dentistry, we go above and beyond to ensure every single patient is completely comfortable in our office – and that includes children! We love working with young patients. Our team members chose to enter the dental field because we care about people and want to help them keep their smiles healthy. We want young patients to love visiting our office and caring for their smiles at home. Keep reading to find out more about children’s dentistry or contact our State College dental team to schedule your child’s first appointment today.
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We all work hard to keep our smiles healthy with daily brushing and flossing and regular trips to the dentist, but even the most diligent oral hygiene routine can have gaps that allow for tooth decay or damage. That’s where a restorative dentist comes into play. A good restorative dentist will provide treatments that preserve the maximum amount of natural tooth structure and recreate lost dental shape and function. A restorative dentist does all of this while keeping in mind the way any treatment will impact the appearance of the smile and overall health. Suffice to say, finding a good restorative dentist is key to keeping a healthy, happy smile on your face. The good news is, the general dentist you trust with your routine oral health and hygiene visits is likely also a skilled restorative dentistry practitioner.
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If you’ve ever been told you need braces but said no because of the time, hassle, discomfort, or embarrassment of traditional metal, the ClearCorrect alignment tray system may be right for you. For many years, metal brackets and wires have been used to correct crooked, gapped, and misaligned teeth by tightening wires that pull brackets shifting teeth into proper alignment. Traditional orthodontics are extremely effective, but treatment impacts every aspect of patients’ lives. Bracket and wire braces require regular visits for tightening and adjustment, changes to diet and oral hygiene routines, take as long as 24 months to complete, and give patients a metallic smile. Thanks to advances in orthodontics, our State College, PA dental patients have a more cosmetic, convenient solution: the ClearCorrect alignment tray system.
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Brushing your teeth may be a habit that you take for granted. After all, most people begin to brush their own teeth around the age of 2 or 3 (with some adult backup), but what many of us don’t realize is we’ve never updated our tooth brushing techniques. Our teeth require different hygiene and care at different stages of our lives. One of the most essential elements of dental hygiene is proper tooth brushing, but if you’re still brushing the way mom or dad taught you as a child, you may not be cleaning your teeth effectively. Let the skilled staff at Donald Marks Family Dentistry help you make the most out of your daily tooth brushing routine. Call to schedule a dental hygiene appointment with our State Park, PA dental practice today.
Tooth Brushing Recommendations from the Dentist State College, PA Trusts
When it comes to brushing, we recommend double checking the basics:
- Brush twice a day – brushing once in the morning and once before going to sleep is routine, and a 3rd brushing following your afternoon meal can be beneficial as well. However, all things should be done in moderation, and this includes tooth brushing. Done more than 3 times a day, brushing can damage gums.
- Check your brush – If you’re using a brush labeled “hard bristled,” one that is not American Dental Association approved, or one that is more than 3 or 4 months old, throw it out and get a new one. The ideal tooth brush should be soft or extra soft bristled to minimize damage to gums and maximize dental cleaning results. Always look for the ADA seal of approval when purchasing dental hygiene items as these have undergone more rigorous testing for effectiveness. Replace toothbrushes every 3 to 4 months to prevent contamination and maintain optimal brushing effectiveness. This includes mechanical tooth brushes. Make sure to purchase a mechanical brush that has replaceable heads.
- Check the clock – If you’re not brushing for at least two minutes, you are not thoroughly cleaning each tooth. Brushing longer than two minutes is even better. Many people gauge their brushing time using a timer, by brushing for the length of an entire song, or by brushing through a commercial break on television. Whatever trick you use, make sure to set aside at least 2 minutes every morning and evening to brush your teeth.
- Brush gently – Whether you apply a great deal of pressure while you brush or just a little, you are likely going to remove the same amount of plaque from your teeth and gums. Brush gently to avoid damaging soft tissue or causing gum recession. Holding your toothbrush with only 2 to 3 fingers like a pen, pencil, or paintbrush is a great way to build the habit of brushing with less pressure.
The Bass Method for Brushing
Many people are taught to brush their teeth as children using big circles or back and forth motions with the bristles flat against the outside and tops of teeth. Many children are never taught to brush the inside of their teeth at all. While these methods may be effective for children with poor hand eye coordination who are just developing the necessary motor skills to keep up their hygiene, there’s a reason we don’t brush our hair or wash our bodies the way we did when we were 3. Why would we continue to brush our teeth that way? For patients who want to start a more effective brushing routine, the Bass method is an option the team at Donald Marks Family Dentistry highly recommends.
How the Bass method works:
- Place your brush at a 45 degree angle to your teeth, against the gum line.
- Quickly move the toothbrush back and forth. The bristles should remain stationary while only your hand and the brush move.
- Count to ten, gently flick the bristles toward the biting surface of your tooth to shift plaque out from under gums, and proceed to the next tooth.
- Continue this process for each tooth inside and out.
- To clean the tops of teeth, place the brush flat on your biting surface and move back and forth keeping bristles stationary as you did with your other teeth.
- Count to ten and move to the next tooth. Continue until each tooth has been cleaned.
The Bass brushing method is preferred by many dentists and hygienists because it encourages increased periodontal care, and maximizes the effectiveness of each brush stroke. Ask your dental hygienist to explain or demonstrate effective brushing techniques for your, unique bite next time you visit our office.
Contact us for More Information
We’re always here to help, no matter what your dental care needs, but we’re dedicated to improved preventive care so our patients are more likely to retain their natural smiles for life. Call Donald Marks Family Dentistry to schedule an appointment today. Our State College, PA dental practice welcomes patients from neighboring communities Spring Mills, Centre Hall, Huntingdon, Altoona, Penns Valley, Boalsburg, Lemont, Bellefonte, Lewistown, and Phillipsburg.
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Do you have swollen or bleeding gums? If so, you may already have periodontal disease (gum disease). If left untreated, periodontal disease can slowly deteriorate your gums and the structures that support your teeth, eventually leading to noticeable gum recession and tooth loss. Additionally, many medical studies have shown that periodontal disease is associated with more serious conditions, including diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. Don’t take chances with your good health; schedule the periodontal therapy appointment you need with Dr. Marks or Dr. Martin today. Donald Marks Family Dentistry is the leading family dentistry of: State College, PA, Park Forest Village, Spring Mills, Centre Hall, Huntingdon, Altoona, Penns Valley, Boalsburg, Lemont, Bellefonte, Lewiston, Philipsburg, Port Matilda, University Park, Pleasant Gap, Hollidaysburg, and the surrounding communities.
- Age: Recent studies indicate that older people have the highest rates of periodontal disease; in fact, over 70% of Americans 65 and older have periodontitis (advanced gum disease).
- Tobacco Use: Many recent studies have also shown that tobacco use could be the most significant risk factor in the development and progression of periodontal disease.
- Genetics: Some patients may actually be genetically more susceptible to periodontal disease.
- Stress: Problems with stress can make it more difficult for your body to fight off infection, including periodontal disease.
- Certain Medications: Some drugs, including oral contraceptives, anti-depressants, and certain heart medicines, can affect your oral health.
- Teeth Grinding (Bruxism): Clenching or grinding your teeth at night can put excess force on the supporting tissues of the teeth and could speed up the rate at which these periodontal tissues deteriorate.
- Other Diseases: More serious systemic diseases that interfere with the body’s inflammatory system may worsen the condition of your gums, including: cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis.
- Poor Diet: A diet low in important nutrients can compromise the body’s immune system and make it harder for the body to fight off infection.
State College Periodontal Therapy Appointments
We offer gentle but comprehensive periodontal therapy that may include:
- Scaling: Scaling removes tartar and bacteria from your tooth surfaces and beneath your gums.
- Root planing: Root planing smoothes your tooth root surfaces, discouraging future buildup of tartar and bacteria.
- Antibiotics: We may also recommend using topical or oral antibiotics to help control a bacterial infection.
In any case, we will work to ensure that your gums are rehabilitated and protected from further inflammation. Schedule the periodontal therapy appointment you need to stay healthy with Dr. Marks or Dr. Martin today. Donald Marks Family Dentistry is the trusted family dentistry of: State College, PA, Park Forest Village, Spring Mills, Centre Hall, Huntingdon, Altoona, Penns Valley, Boalsburg, Lemont, Bellefonte, Lewiston, Philipsburg, Port Matilda, University Park, Pleasant Gap, Hollidaysburg, and the neighboring areas.
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Have you heard about new CEREC One Visit Crowns? A dental crown is used to cover or cap a damaged tooth, to restore its normal form and function. Besides strengthening your tooth, a dental crown can be used to improve its appearance, shape, and alignment. Dental crowns are also used to top off dental implants to provide an artificial tooth shape and structure. Dental crown placement used to take two or more visits, and required the use of messy putty moldings and the wearing of temporary crowns. Today however, Dr. Marks offers one visit crowns with CEREC dental technology. CEREC One Visit Crowns can save you both time and money by eliminating the need for multiple visits and uncomfortable temporaries. Make your CEREC One Visit Crowns appointment with Dr. Marks or Dr. Martin today. Donald Marks Family Dentistry is the leading restorative dentistry of: State College, PA, Park Forest Village, Spring Mills, Centre Hall, Huntingdon, Altoona, Penns Valley, Boalsburg, Lemont, Bellefonte, Lewiston, Philipsburg, Port Matilda, University Park, Pleasant Gap, Hollidaysburg, and the surrounding communities.
CEREC (Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics) is an advanced dental restorative system utilizing CAD/CAM (computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing) dental technology to restore decayed teeth, place crowns, remove defective silver fillings, or place cosmetic veneers in just one short visit to the dentist.
CEREC crowns are made in two distinct phases, acquisition and milling:
- CEREC Acquisition: First, Dr. Marks will use the CEREC camera to take a digital picture of your damaged tooth. This picture is used instead of a traditional putty impression. The computer and CEREC 3D software converts the digital impressions into a virtual model. Dr. Marks can this use this model to design your restoration chairside. Dr. Marks then sends the design specifications to the in-office CEREC milling machine for fabrication.
- CEREC Milling: Dr. Marks will select a ceramic block that matches the preferred shade of your new tooth. Using this block and the data from the acquisition process, two diamond coated burs will precisely carve the block into the perfect restoration. After the milling is finished, Dr. Marks will polish your finished crown and bond it into place. This entire process usually takes about 30 minutes depending on the size and type of restoration.
Make an appointment with Dr. Marks and Dr. Martin today for your new CEREC One Visit Crown restoration. Donald Marks Family Dentistry is the trusted family dentistry of: State College, PA, Park Forest Village, Spring Mills, Centre Hall, Huntingdon, Altoona, Penns Valley, Boalsburg, Lemont, Bellefonte, Lewiston, Philipsburg, Port Matilda, University Park, Pleasant Gap, Hollidaysburg, and neighboring areas.
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Do you need a smile overhaul? If you have worn down tooth enamel, uneven tooth alignment, spacing, discoloration, or chips and cracks, a new set or porcelain veneers could restore your smile. Porcelain veneers are versatile and customizable and can be used to address many cosmetic imperfections at the same time. To renew your smile for the New Year, make an appointment with Dr. Marks and Dr. Martin at Donald Marks Family Dentistry for your porcelain veneers consultation today. Donald Marks Family Dentistry proudly restores smiles throughout: State College, PA, Park Forest Village, Spring Mills, Centre Hall, Huntingdon, Altoona, Penns Valley, Boalsburg, Lemont, Bellefonte, Lewiston, Philipsburg, Port Matilda, University Park, Pleasant Gap, Hollidaysburg, and the surrounding communities.
What Are Porcelain Veneers?
Porcelain veneers are thin shells of layered tooth-colored porcelain or composite bonded over the surface of your enamel to mask cosmetic imperfections.
How Are Porcelain Veneers Placed?
Porcelain veneers can usually be completed in two office visits. First, Dr. Marks will administer a local anesthetic to block any discomfort during tooth preparation. Your natural tooth will then be prepared with minimal reshaping. Then, Dr. Marks will make an impression of your teeth which will be sent to a dental laboratory for fabrication. When they’re ready, the veneers will be placed on your teeth, shaped, and hardened using a high intensity light. The veneer will be corrected to match the shape, length and form of your natural teeth. When finished, the veneers will be polished to create a beautiful new smile.
State College Porcelain Veneers Consultations
Porcelain veneers are stain-resistant, natural-looking, and durable. Make your porcelain veneers appointment with Dr. Marks and Dr. Martin today. Donald Marks Family Dentistry is a trusted cosmetic dentistry proudly serving families throughout: State College, PA, Park Forest Village, Spring Mills, Centre Hall, Huntingdon, Altoona, Penns Valley, Boalsburg, Lemont, Bellefonte, Lewiston, Philipsburg, Port Matilda, University Park, Pleasant Gap, Hollidaysburg, and nearby areas.
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When is a headache, more than a headache? If it is accompanied by neck and ear pain, difficulty chewing, and clicking noises in the jaw, you could be suffering from a more serious condition, TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorder. These important joints are located on either side of your face to help regulate your facial muscles and jaw movement.TMJ disorders are a group of degenerative conditions resulting from strained and damaged temporomandibular joints. For your TMJ disorder evaluation, make an appointment with Dr. Marks and Dr. Martin at Donald Marks Family Dentistry today. Dr. Marks is an experienced general and restorative dentist that can help you get to the root of the problem. Donald Marks Family Dentistry is conveniently located on University Drive and provides quality dental care to patients of all ages throughout State College, PA, Park Forest Village, Spring Mills, Centre Hall, Huntingdon, Altoona, Penns Valley, Boalsburg, Lemont, Bellefonte, Lewiston, Philipsburg, Port Matilda, University Park, Pleasant Gap, and Hollidaysburg.
What Causes TMJ Disorder?
TMJ disorders typically fall into one of three categories:
- Myofascial pain dysfunction (MPD) syndrome– pain at the TMJ due to various causes of increased muscle tension and spasm. It is believed that MPD syndrome is a physical manifestation of psychological stress. Pain is secondary to events such as nocturnal jaw clenching and teeth grinding. Treatment is focused on behavioral modification as opposed to joint repair.
- Internal derangement (ID)– where the problem lies within the joint itself, most commonly with the position of the articulating disc, usually resulting from facial injury.
- Degenerative joint disease– where arthritic changes result in degeneration of the joint and muscles.
Common TMJ Disorder Symptoms
- Radiating pain in the ear and jaw that gets worse when chewing
- Locking of the jaw
- Ear clicking or popping
- Headache and/or neck ache
- A bite that feels uncomfortable or different from usual
- Neck, shoulder, or back pain
- Bruxism, teeth clenching
- Increasing pain over the course of your day
- A history of jaw or facial trauma
State College, PA TMJ Disorder Therapy from Donald Marks Family Dentistry
Dr. Marks can offer immediate and non- invasive TMJ disorder relief with custom-made nightguards and bite appliances to stop and reverse TMJ disorder damage. Don’t put off the TMJ disorder therapy you need any longer. Make an appointment with Dr. Marks and Dr. Martin at Donald Marks Family Dentistry today. Donald Marks Family Dentistry proudly serves families throughout State College, PA, Park Forest Village, Spring Mills, Centre Hall, Huntingdon, Altoona, Penns Valley, Boalsburg, Lemont, Bellefonte, Lewiston, Philipsburg, Port Matilda, University Park, Pleasant Gap, Hollidaysburg, and the surrounding communities.
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Although the holidays may lead many of us to consume more sugary treats and alcoholic beverages than usual, we don’t have to give up our healthy smiles. You can make dental care a priority and help keep your family’s teeth and gums healthy despite the abundance of cavity causing food and drinks this season. After you’ve adopted some healthier habits, be sure to make an appointment with Dr. Marks and Dr. Martin at Donald Marks Family Dentistry today. Keeping on top of your family’s regular dental check-ups is the easiest way to ensure that their teeth stay in tip top shape this holiday. Donald Marks Family Dentistry is conveniently located on University Drive and provides quality dental care to patients of all ages throughout State College, PA, Park Forest Village, Spring Mills, Centre Hall, Huntingdon, Altoona, Penns Valley, Boalsburg, Lemont, Bellefonte, Lewiston, Philipsburg, Port Matilda, University Park, Pleasant Gap, and Hollidaysburg.
5 Important Holiday Dental Care Tips
- Don’t Savor the Flavor- To reduce the risk of damage from drinking highly acidic red and white wines, refrain from swishing the wine around in your mouth and try drinking water between glasses of wine to rinse the acid from your teeth and gums.
- Get Help From Cavity Fighting Foods- Holiday goodies like cookies, chocolate and candy canes contain high levels of sugar that promote the growth of cavity-causing bacteria. After eating sweet treats like these, try drinking fluorinated tap water, chewing sugarless gum, eating a piece of cheese or drinking a glass of milk. Each of these cavity fighting foods contain ingredients that help increase saliva flow, wash away bacteria and strengthen the enamel.
- Just Say No to Stress- As you get stressed over the holiday season, your oral hygiene routine can suffer. Make a conscious effort to pay special attention to your home dental care habits to combat tooth decay. Since teeth grinding and clenching can increase with heightened stress levels, this is also a great time to see the dentist for a custom fitted night guard to protect your teeth.
- The Perfect Stocking Stuffer- Help your family care for their teeth by stuffing their stockings with new toothbrushes. Dentists recommend that toothbrushes be changed at least once every three months.
- Avoid Sticky Situations- Holiday favorites like fruit cake, candy canes and caramel popcorn can wreak havoc on your teeth. These hard and sticky substances can be difficult to remove and can also easily injure your gums or fracture a tooth. Try avoiding them this season altogether.
Holiday Dental Care Appointments in State College, PA
Give your family the gift of a healthy smile by making an appointment with Dr. Marks and Dr. Martin at Donald Marks Family Dentistry today. Their family dental care office is conveniently located on University Drive and proudly serves families throughout State College, PA, Park Forest Village, Spring Mills, Centre Hall, Huntingdon, Altoona, Penns Valley, Boalsburg, Lemont, Bellefonte, Lewiston, Philipsburg, Port Matilda, University Park, Pleasant Gap, and Hollidaysburg.
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If you are an athlete or you lead an athletic lifestyle, your physical fitness is a top priority. Yet many athletes don’t realize that good dental health is an important part of achieving top physical performance. Recent studies have even found that hundreds of world class Olympic athletes suffer from dental hygiene issues regularly. This is because many of the habits that athletes develop to maintain their physical condition can lead to dental problems like tooth decay and gum disease. Dr. Marks and Dr. Martin help athletes keep their teeth and gums healthy at his University Drive dental office in State College, PA. You can make an appointment with the doctors today to proactively tackle your oral health.
Dental Health Concerns for Athletes
One risk of decay is caused by the daily use of sports drinks, which can actually be more damaging to teeth than sodas because of high acidity and large amounts of sugar. Athletes often have intense training regimens that require maximum physical performance. To refuel during these workouts, many athletes consume energy and sports drinks, protein bars, and eat frequent meals throughout the day, all of which can be detrimental to your oral heal. Excessive sweating could also cause dehydration, which reduces the amount of saliva in the mouth. Saliva plays a vital role in protecting the teeth from decay by rinsing away harmful bacteria and restoring tooth enamel. Athletes can place a lot of stress on their teeth from clenching and grinding while exerting maximum effort during training or competitions. These habits can also wear down the health of an athlete’s teeth and worsen the damage caused by tooth decay. Athletes also have an elevated risk of tooth, gum and lip injuries.
Dental Health Care for Athletes in State College, PA
There are important steps to take to protect the health of your teeth and gums if you are an athlete or lead an athletic lifestyle. The first is to switch from sports drinks to water to keep hydrated. Also, try to gut down on supplements or meal replacements that are high in sugar. To protect teeth from injury, and to minimize the effects of clenching or grinding your teeth, it’s also important to wear a custom fitted mouthguard. Due to the increased risks of dental problems, athletes should also see a dentist more often than non- athletes. You can contact Dr. Marks and Dr. Martin today to schedule your next appointment. Dr. Marks and Dr. Martin are conveniently located on University Drive in State College, PA and proudly serves patients from surrounding Park Forest Village, Spring Mills, Centre Hall, Huntingdon, Altoona, Penns Valley, Boalsburg, Lemont, Bellefonte, Lewiston, Philipsburg, Port Matilda, University Park, Pleasant Gap, and Hollidaysburg.
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