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Improve the Look of Your Smile in 2020 with Cosmetic Dentistry

Improve the Look of Your Smile in 2020 with Cosmetic Dentistry

HEALTHY MOUTH TIPS

If your goal is to improve the look of your smile in 2020, the team at Steve Kim DDS can help. We know how important your smile is and our goal is to make you fall back in love with it. Our team specializes in cosmetic dental procedures in Torrance, CA and we are confident that you will be smiling from ear to ear when you leave our office. Check out some of our cosmetic dental procedures below.

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Dental Implants
Missing teeth can cause you to experience a lot of anxiety, especially in social situations. At Steve Kim, DDS, we offer dental implants which can replace one or all of your teeth. Implants consist of small titanium posts that are placed into your jawbone. Once the jawbone heals, crowns are then attached to the post. Dental implants provide a natural look and feel.

Dental Veneers
Veneers are a perfect choice for patients who want to cover up stains, cracks, or fill in gaps. Made from porcelain, a veneer is thin in its profile and is bonded to the tooth after some of the tooth’s enamel has been removed.

Bonding
If you have a small blemish on your tooth or you are lacking enamel on a tooth, you may want to have the tooth bonded. Bonding is made from a resin and is an alternative to fillings. The resin is tooth colored in appearance, so it blends in well to the tooth.

Teeth Whitening
The most common way to improve the look of your smile is to receive teeth whitening services. Our Torrance, CA office offers in-house treatments, which allow you to see instant results. In addition to our in-house option, we also have at-home whitening options, so that you can brighten your smile in the comfort of your own home.

Inlays and Onlays
Often referred to as indirect fillings, inlays and onlays are used when a tooth is decayed or damaged. An inlay is used when the material needs to be bonded to the center of the tooth and an onlay is used when the material needs to be bonded to the points of the tooth.

Dental Crowns
Usually called a cap, a dental crown is used to protect teeth that have been damaged or badly decayed. The cap sits at the gum line and comes in a variety of materials including metal or porcelain. Crowns are also used with dental implants.

Other Cosmetic Dental Procedures
In addition to the cosmetic procedures above, we also specialize in dentures, braces, bridges, and several other procedures. A smile makeover is only a call away and our cosmetic procedures are personalized to ensure you get the smile you want.

If you would like to discuss your options with our team, please give our Torrance, CA office a call today.

Missing Teeth? There ARE Options for You

Missing Teeth? There ARE Options for You

HEALTHY MOUTH TIPS

Tooth loss can happen to anyone and when it happens to you, you may find yourself hiding behind your hand and avoiding smiling or laughing in public. While you may think you are alone right now, you are not. According to the American Dental Association, the average adult, aged 20 to 64, has at least three missing teeth or decayed teeth.

Whether you lost your tooth during an accident or you suffered some dental decay, there are options available to you. These options not only improve the look and feel of your smile, but they allow you to speak and chew without any issues.

At Steve Kim, DDS, we have several tooth replacement options available to you. Our Torrance, CA office specializes in cosmetic dentistry and restorative procedures to help you get the smile you have always wanted. Below, you can learn more about some of our recommended tooth replacement options.

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Dental Bridges
Dental bridges are one tooth replacement option we offer here in our Torrance office. There are a few different types, but the general idea of a bridge is to fill in any gaps where you may be missing teeth. Bridges attach to surrounding teeth, so it is imperative that the “support” teeth are healthy and free from any dental decay. If there are no surrounding teeth, a dental bridge cannot be used.

Dental Implants
Dental implants are surgically placed into your jawbone. The implant itself is a small titanium post that, when implanted, creates a solid foundation. Once the jawbone is healed, crowns are affixed to the post to provide you with a natural-looking smile. Since dental implants are placed into your jaw, the recovery period can take several months but the implants themselves can last decades. Many patients choose dental implants as they preserve jaw bone and do not lead to shrinkage of the jawbone, which can change the patient’s facial features.

Dentures
When you have several teeth missing in your mouth or you do not have any teeth that can support a bridge, we may recommend dentures. Dentures are removable and are not permanently fixed in the mouth, which makes them an ideal option for some patients. Dentures look just like natural teeth but there is an adjustment period to get used to them. Our office specializes in both full and partial dentures.

Schedule an Appointment at Steve Kim, DDS Today

At Steve Kim, DDS, we specialize in providing you with several tooth replacement procedures to help restore your smile. If you are interested in any of these procedures, we recommend that you schedule a consultation with Dr. Kim. During your consultation, you will be able to discuss the procedure in detail. Call our Torrance office today!

Dental Implants: What Are They?

Dental Implants: What Are They?

HEALTHY MOUTH TIPS

Are you sitting here wondering what dental implants are? If so, you are in the right place. Dental implants are a tooth replacement option that consists of a small artificial tooth root being surgically placed into your jawbone. The root forms with your bone and creates a solid foundation for your new smile. Dental implants are a more effective option than dentures and dental bridges and even last longer.

At Steve Kim, DDS, we see many patients who are in need of tooth replacement options due to injury, decay, or other dental problems. Our patients find that implants are not only aesthetically pleasing but they fit and function just like their natural teeth do. If you are interested in dental implants, reach out to our Torrance, CA office today.

Should I Choose Dental Implants Over Other Options?

It is completely up to you but there are reasons why dental implants are a better option. First, dental implants secure in your mouth and do not move around like dentures and bridges do. The movement from slipping dentures causes irritation on the gums and can be painful for you. Since dental implants fuse to the jawbone, there is no movement from them.

Dental implants last decades and they do not warp over time either. Dentures and bridges tend to change shape and need to be re-fitted or replaced, which can lead to a new adjustment period.

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What Exactly is a Dental Implant?

If you have never seen a dental implant, you may want to know what it looks like. There are three main pieces to the dental implant, which include:

    1. The dental implant. The implant looks like a small screw and is made from titanium. Once in your mouth, it mimics your natural tooth root.
    2. The abutment piece. This is a small connector piece that is placed on the implant once the implant is healed. This connector allows for the crown to be placed on the implant.
    3. The crown. This is the visible portion and is what makes your smile gleam. The crown is placed on the abutment to create a beautiful and natural smile for you.

Dental implants are a wonderful option for any patient who is in need of tooth replacement. You can receive dental implants throughout your entire mouth, on the top of the jaw, or on the bottom of the jaw.

Reach Out to Steve Kim, DDS for an Appointment

Ready for dental implants in Torrance, CA? Call Steve Kim, DDS today to book an appointment with us. We offer many tooth replacement options and can inform you in detail about dental implants for your mouth. Our dentist, Dr. Kim, is trained and experienced in placing dental implants and would love to work with you! Call us now.

Regular Dental Checkups Matter!

Regular Dental Checkups Matter!

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Are you worried that you are not seeing the dentist enough? Dr. Steve S. Kim invites you to take some time and read through this article to find out just how often you should be visiting the dentist and why.

Our Torrance, CA dental office focuses on good oral hygiene and preventative care. Dr. Kim believes that all patients should have a happy and healthy smile and he works hard to ensure that all patients understand the importance of regular dental checkups.

It is recommended that all patients visit the dentist twice per year or every six months. The reason behind this is to help keep your gums and teeth as healthy as possible. Sometimes, Dr. Kim will recommend that patients come into our Torrance office every three months for dental checkups, just to keep an eye on any conditions and closely monitor any issues that may be present.

Regular dental checkups are not only recommended by Dr. Kim, but also by the American Dental Association. These appointments are vital to the overall health of your teeth and gums, so you do not want to miss them.
Dr. Steve S. Kim and his staff want you to be able to share your smile with the world and we can make that happen too. We invite you to continue to read below about why you need to have regular dental cleanings and what these cleanings can do for you.

If you would like to schedule an appointment or you would like to consult with Dr. Kim, please call our Torrance, CA office today!

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An Overview of Your Dental Visit in Torrance, CA

Visiting the dentist can be nerve racking for some patients and we believe that preparation and knowing what to expect can help ease those nerves. When you come into our Torrance office for a dental checkup, you can expect our dental staff to provide you with a thorough examination. During the exam, Dr. Kim will look for signs of tooth decay and gum disease, oral cancer, and perform a quick check of your jaw and neck.

Many patients do not know this, but dentists can tell a lot about your health just by looking at your teeth.

In fact, Dr. Kim can tell if you have diabetes, oral cancer, or a vitamin deficiency through the exam.

While you are having your examination performed, Dr. Kim will look for any plaque and tartar build up. Plaque and tartar are the cause of gum disease and tooth decay, so it is important that it is removed.

Once the examination is complete, you will receive a dental cleaning, which removes any and all plaque from your teeth, a thorough brushing and flossing of your teeth, and polishing of your teeth. If your dental hygienist notices any areas of concern, they will be pointed out to you at this time. We also offer brushing and flossing demonstrations to ensure you are properly cleaning your teeth in between your checkups.

Why a Dental Cleaning? What Does It Do for Me?

Dental cleanings are necessary to efficiently remove any plaque and tartar that has built up over time. At your dental cleaning, your hygienist will remove this plaque and you will notice your teeth feel fresh and look bright.

A dental cleaning is more than just brushing your teeth though. Dr. Kim wants you to know that your exam and cleaning include a comprehensive process to ensure the removal of all plaque.
So, what does a dental cleaning do for you? Let’s see.

Freshens Your Breath
Tooth decay and poor oral hygiene lead to bad breath, which is not only a turn off, but embarrassing for patients as well. Regular dental cleanings help to remove the plaque on your teeth, which can cause tooth decay, which eventually causes bad breath. In addition, Dr. Kim can help you tackle bad breath if it is an ongoing issue.

Prevents Tooth Loss
Cavities happen and they are more prevalent in patients who do not receive regular dental cleanings. Once plaque is allowed to form on the teeth and remain there, it causes problems. Your gums will become infected and eventually pull away from the teeth. Over time, this build up and infection becomes profound and tooth loss can occur.

Brightens Your Smile
Regular dental cleanings provide you with white teeth that you are proud to show off. Over time, foods and drinks stain our teeth and can leave us feeling unsure. A cleaning can get rid of those stains that naturally occur over the years.

Saves Money
Imagine having to have restorative procedures performed because of bad oral hygiene? Dental crowns are expensive, and it is even more expensive to have dental implants. Take the time to have your teeth cleaned regularly and save yourself some serious money.

Prevents Cavities
As you know, plaque causes cavities. Regular dental cleanings remove the plaque from your teeth and prevent dental caries. Should you not have cleanings done regularly, the plaque can eat away at the tooth enamel and cause you to develop cavities.

Improves Your Overall Health
Your mouth is a window to your health. If you have poor oral hygiene, your health will suffer as well. Clean teeth equal a happy body, so make sure you are having your teeth cleaned as often as needed.

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Schedule a Dental Checkup Today

If you have not had a dental checkup performed recently, now is the time. Do not delay either! Dr. Steve S. Kim is here to assist you and provide you with a thorough checkup and cleaning. Prevention is the key to beautiful and healthy teeth! Schedule your appointment today in our Torrance, CA office by giving us a call!

Boost Your Confidence with a Great Smile

Boost Your Confidence with a Great Smile

HEALTHY MOUTH TIPS

Projecting a positive self image begins with a positive mindset and an easy, natural smile. But what if you feel embarrassed about your smile? Perhaps you have crooked teeth or gaps between your teeth, or you suffer from tooth decay that causes bad breath. A good oral hygiene routine with regular professional dental cleanings can vastly improve your self image and help you feel more confident in public.

First Impressions Count

Your smile is like a calling card, a person’s first impression of you. If you feel shy about showing your teeth for any reason, it may appear that you are reluctant to smile, or not feeling confident or comfortable in the situation.

When you know you’re projecting a confident image by flashing a brilliant, healthy smile, your energy is naturally open and people gravitate toward you. You feel more empowered to express yourself publicly and professionally. Knowing that your smile looks attractive and healthy is a great image booster and actually broadens your social and professional opportunities thanks to your renewed self image.

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Fresh Breath Ensures Great Conversation

Have you ever pulled back while talking to someone because you were turned off by their breath? Bad breath is a surefire conversation-stopper and can affect your ability to make a good first impression in situations such as job interviews, social gatherings, and other occasions when you have to come face to face with people.

Maintaining fresh breath is not difficult, assuming your mouth is healthy. Regular checkups and routine professional dental cleaning at least twice yearly, along with a good oral hygiene regimen at home, can keep your mouth healthy and your breath fresh. This is an important investment in yourself that will help you build self confidence.

Particularly if you smoke or drink beverages such as coffee, tea, or wine, you may have a higher tendency to develop dry mouth, harmful oral bacteria, and an acidic condition in the mouth that can lead to the development of tooth decay and bad breath. If this describes you, you’d do best to see your dental hygienist for regular dental cleaning at least three times yearly to protect against the potential development of tooth decay and gum disease.

Tooth Whitening for a More Radiant Smile

If you have stains on your teeth, or general discoloration caused by years of smoking, a daily coffee or tea habit, or drinking a lot of wine, you may wish to have a professional whitening treatment to restore radiance and brightness to your smile.

Other Dental Treatments to Enhance Your Smile

See a dentist if you have issues such as chipped or crooked teeth, misssing teeth, or gaps between your teeth. You may require orthodontic treatment, a partial denture, or some other treatment to further enhance the appearance and function of your teeth, improving the beauty of your smile.

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A Great Smile Begins with Good Oral Health

By far the most important thing you can do to maintain a beautiful smile is to commit to a healthy oral hygiene regimen as follows:

  1. Avoid habits such as smoking and eating sugary snacks, and cut back your consumption of soft drinks, coffee, tea, wine, and alcoholic beverages to maintain a healthy oral environment and discourage the development of harmful bacteria as well as stains and discoloration on the teeth.
  2. Develop a daily habit of brushing thoroughly for at least two minutes, two times daily, preferably after meals, using a soft bristle brush. Replace your toothbrush every 3 months to protect against accumulation of bacteria.
  3. Use dental floss at least once daily to remove any food particles that may become lodged in the crevices between your teeth. This protects against the development of harmful bacteria and plaque that can cause tooth decay and bad breath.
  4. Use a good anti-bacterial mouthwash to help protect against the accumulation of harmful bacteria that cause bad breath. While you’re at it, try a mouthwash that will also protect your teeth against plaque buildup, to keep your mouth cleaner for longer after each professional dental cleaning session.
  5. Visit your dentist regularly for routine checkups and get your teeth cleaned professionally at least twice a year, or more often if you happen to consume a lot of coffee or wine, or if you’re still working on kicking the smoking habit.

If you’re looking for a great family dentist to help you maintain a radiant healthy smile and you live near Torrance, Gardena, Manhattan Beach, or surrounding areas in California, Dr. Steve Kim at Steve S. Kim, DDS offers comprehensive family dentistry, including tooth whitening and other smile enhancing treatments for residents of the Manhattan Beach area.

Everything You Need to Know About Bleeding Gums

Everything You Need to Know About Bleeding Gums

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Bleeding gums are a symptom of a bacterial infection in the gums. In its earliest stage, the infection is called gingivitis and affects only the soft tissue around the teeth.

If left untreated, gingivitis will develop into full-blown periodontal disease, in which not only the gums, but also the periodontal ligament that attaches teeth to bone, as well as the alveolar bone itself, which provides the support that teeth are attached to, become affected and damaged by the infection over time.

Periodontal disease may spread further into the jawbone, causing serious damage to teeth, gums, ligaments, and bone, impeding the patient’s ability to eat and chew properly, and in some cases, impeding the ability to speak properly.

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Periodontal Disease Starts with Dental Plaque

Dental plaque is a sticky whitish substance that accumulates on tooth surfaces after eating. Without proper oral hygiene and regular dental checkup and cleanings, harmful bacteria may build up over time on dental plaque and cause periodontal disease.

As plaque begins to accumulate, the gums become more inflamed and delicate. If plaque is not properly removed, the harmful bacteria will continue to multiply, worsening the infection. At this stage, the gum tissue begins to recede and detach from the tooth, creating a “pocket” that surrounds the tooth. These pockets then encourage more plaque and bacteria to accumulate, since it is harder to remove plaque from these pockets below the gum line.

If untreated, periodontal disease may spread to the periodontal ligament and alveolar bone, causing severe damage to these structures. As the condition advances, the gums may become painful, eating and chewing may become difficult, and the teeth may become loose and start falling out.

Treatment for Periodontal Disease

Periodontal disease, if caught in time, is easily treatable with antibiotics and regular professional cleanings. In more advanced cases, a procedure called dental planning and root scaling may be required to remove the plaque that has built up below the gum line. If the gum or bone tissue has been lost, it may be necessary to perform a gum graft or bone graft to replace tissue that has been lost to the disease.

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Periodontal Disease is Preventable

Fortunately, it is not hard to identify, treat, or prevent periodontal disease. Here are five things that you can do to diminish your likelihood of developing periodontal disease:

  • Avoid sweet, sticky foods such as hard candy. These foods are hard to remove from the tooth surface, and may cause harmful buildup of dangerous plaque and bacteria.
  • Brush properly after every meal. Proper brushing after each meal removes the plaque that accumulates on the surface of your teeth and prevents plaque and bacteria from building up in the mouth. If in some instances it is impossible to brush after a meal, at least rinse your mouth out to prevent food from sticking to your teeth.
  • Floss properly at least twice daily. Flossing properly helps to remove plaque from around the tooth and helps dislodge food particles from the gum line to prevent buildup of plaque in that area.
  • Regular dental checkups are also essential to the prevention of periodontal disease. You must have a dental exam at least once yearly in order to make sure that nothing is going on in areas that you cannot see.
  • Regular professional cleanings are a must. It is recommended that you get regular cleanings about once every six months, and even more often if you have symptoms of periodontal disease, such as bleeding gums. Regular cleanings done by your dentist or dental hygienist will help to keep plaque and bacteria in check, especially in areas below the gum line that are harder to reach with a toothbrush or dental floss.

Don’t take risks when it comes to periodontal disease! If your gums are bleeding and you live in the area of Torrence, Gardena, or surrounding areas in California, contact a qualified dentists such as Dr. Steve Kim at Steve S. Kim, DDS to get a proper dental checkup and a professional cleaning. Healthy gums begin with regular dental checkups!

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