Ensure Dental Health During the Holidays with These Tips

No one wants a dental emergency over the holidays. Keep your smile merry and bright all season long with these healthy dental care tips. And should a dental emergency arise, during the holidays or any other time during the year, give Hill Country Oral Surgery a call at 512-327-7233. As a top oral surgery practice in Austin, TX, we are prepared to help our patients when dental emergencies arise.

Enjoy the Candy Canes but Not Too Many

Sweets and treats abound during the holidays. We want you to indulge and enjoy the season but it’s best to keep our consumption reasonable. Candy and sugary foods are terrible for your teeth. Limit sweets to once a day and brush when you’re finished. If you can’t brush, rinse with water.

Your teeth will thank you if you choose your treats with your teeth in mind. Chewy treats stick around long after you’re finished enjoying them. Swap caramels, toffees, and candy canes for fudge, cookies, or even better, dark chocolate.

A Holiday Break Doesn’t Mean a Break from Dental Hygiene

A change in routine often leads to slacking on everyday habits, important ones like brushing and flossing your teeth. Don’t neglect your dental habits. We hope you’ll use the extra time during the holidays to improve your dental habits, not let them slide.

As you have days off during the holidays, try to incorporate a new positive dental habit, rather than letting established habits falter. Not a great flosser? Become one over the holidays. Use the extra time to improve your brushing skills. Give your smile the gift of better dental habits. What can you do to improve your dental hygiene this holiday season?

Teeth Are for Chewing, Not Opening Packages

It is easy to break a tooth but much harder to repair the damage. Teeth are for chewing, not opening packages or removing clothing tags. As you wrap and open gifts, keep a pair of scissors nearby and use them instead of your teeth.

Dental Needs Don’t Pause for the Holidays

We know the holiday season is busy and fitting in regular dental care can be a challenge, but if you have dental needs, they still need to be addressed. Regular dental visits and cleanings, restorative and repair work, tooth extractions, etc. should be a priority, even over the holidays. If you need to schedule an appointment, give us a call, and our staff will help you set things up.

Resolve to Improve Your Dental Health in 2019

Finally, while you’re enjoying the holidays with your family, spend a little time reflecting on your resolutions for the new year. We hope that one of your resolutions will be better dental health in 2019. Every smile is different, and you can choose the resolutions that will best help you achieve beautiful pearly whites. Some ideas for a healthier smile include:

  • Fix Dental Problems- Do you have a tooth that needs extracting or a gap that needs a dental implant? Resolve to fix any existing dental problems in 2019. We’re scheduling consultations for January and February now. Call us to get on the schedule!
  • Visit the Dentist Regularly- Consistent dental visits can help you avoid many dental problems. Ask your dentist how often you need to come in for cleanings and checks. If you haven’t been consistent on dental visits, 2019 is a great time to start.
  • Brush Better- Brushing teeth shouldn’t take a lot of time, but it does require a few minutes. Many of our patients don’t spend enough time brushing or don’t brush effectively. Ask your dentist for tooth brushing tips and try to spend at least 2-3 minutes brushing, 2x a day.

Making a few small changes with the coming new year can transform and improve your smile for decades to come. Whatever you resolve, make sure that your teeth make the list.

Wishing you a happy holiday season from all of us at Hill Country Oral Surgery in Austin, TX.

The Effects of Tooth Loss on Your Health and Appearance


Losing even a single tooth can have a major impact on your health and appearance. Often the full consequence of losing a tooth isn’t realized immediately as these changes are subtle and occur over time. The good news is, with modern dental restoration, we can we can eliminate many of the negative effects of missing teeth, improving both health and appearance. Are you missing teeth? Learn how your missing teeth are impacting your life and then call our offices to learn about your options for dental restoration.

Loss of Dental Stability

Your teeth work together, supporting and helping to keep each other in place. When you lose a tooth, a hole opens up, allowing the surrounding teeth to shift and move positions. This can cause alignment issues and over time can affect how your teeth fit together and how you chew your food.

Bone Loss

Chewing is essential for good dental health. Your teeth help to maintain the strength of the bone that supports them. Chewing forces help keep the bone strong and dense. If you lose a tooth, the supporting bone slowly begins to atrophy. This can make dental implants and other restoration options more difficult in the future.

If it has been a long time since you lost a tooth, your bone has likely degenerated significantly. Often bone grafting is needed for successful dental implants.

Gum Recession

As the bone shrinks, so do the gum tissues. Your gums may become thinner and more delicate over the area where there is a missing tooth. Thinning gums are easily inflamed and injured by dentures and false teeth.

Changes to Facial Appearance

Missing teeth affect your appearance by more than just your smile. Bone and tooth loss can accelerate facial aging, changing the overall structure of your face. Changes to the appearance of the lips, chin, and nose are common after tooth loss. By some estimates, losing teeth can add up to 10 years to your appearance. Many patients don’t realize that these changes are caused by missing teeth and attribute them solely to aging.

Difficulty Eating

Are your favorite foods difficult or impossible to enjoy? Many patients that use dentures or have missing teeth struggle to eat certain foods. Don’t let missing teeth make you miss out on your favorite foods.

Lack of Nutrition

Patients that eat a healthy diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains generally enjoy better health. Unfortunately, missing teeth can lead to missing nutrition. Lower intakes of fruits and vegetables are common in denture wearers, often because these foods are too difficult to eat.

Poor chewing performance can also lead to difficulty digesting. When foods aren’t chewed as thoroughly, nutrition may not be adequately absorbed by the body as the food travels through the digestive tract.

Changes in Speech

Your teeth affect your speech. Patients with missing teeth often notice changes to their speech including slurring of certain words, lisping, or spitting. Missing teeth can also cause the tongue to increase in size, further affecting speech difficulties.

Impact on Confidence

We want our patients to laugh, smile, and enjoy life with confidence. When you have missing teeth, you may be embarrassed of your smile. Missing teeth have a negative impact on both appearance and self-confidence.

Minimizing the Negative Effects of Missing Teeth- What Can You Do?

In a perfect world, no one would ever lose a permanent tooth, but of course, this isn’t reality. Teeth can be lost for a variety of reasons including trauma and decay. Losing a tooth is a serious problem, but it is treatable. Proper treatment can help to reduce the negative effects of missing teeth. If you’re missing one or more teeth, call our offices to learn more about your options for dental restoration.

  • Dental Implants– Functioning much like a natural tooth, a dental implant consists of a titanium screw that is implanted into the jaw and a replacement crown that is attached to the implant. Dental implants can help maintain bone strength and density and tooth positioning after a missing tooth.
  • All-On-4- For patients requiring full arch restoration, we offer All-On-4 dental implants. Four or more implants are placed into the jaw to support a full arch restoration. This can be a more affordable option for patients that require many dental implants. This isn’t the right fit for every patient.
  • Bone and Gum Grafting- Bone and gum loss are common after losing a tooth, especially if it has been an extended amount of time. Bone and gum grafting can restore bone and gum appearance and density.

Losing a tooth can have a negative impact on your health and appearance, but dental restoration can eliminate many of the problems associated with tooth loss. Call us today and learn about your options for restoring your smile and your dental health.

Can I really have “Teeth in a Day”?

You may have heard about Teeth in a Day and thought: could it really be possible? We can’t blame you for being skeptical, but it’s true: today’s technology makes it possible to undergo the restoration of a full set of teeth within a single day. The secret behind this remarkable procedure? The latest in dental implant technology.

How Is It Possible?

Before, more dental implants were needed to reconstruct a single jaw. However, new dental materials available today allow the restoration of an entire arch of teeth using fewer implants. During the Teeth in a Day procedure, multiple titanium dental implants are implanted to support an entire arch of teeth, and then a set of prosthetic teeth are fixed to the implants. Usually, a procedure called All-On- 4 is performed for Teeth in a Day. All-On- 4 uses a minimum of 4 dental implants to support the whole arch of teeth. However, the number of dental implants needed will still vary in the case of each patient.

Teeth in a Day Procedure

After your consultation and a CT scan, our highly-skilled and well-experienced experts will create a template from your teeth to serve as a temporary implant guide for your surgery.

The Teeth in a Day procedure is performed by a team consisting of a surgeon, a restorative dentist, and sometimes a prosthodontist (a dentist that specializes in complex dental restorations). They will work together to assess the best dental template that is will work best for aesthetics and function.

A follow up checkup will be required the next day to assess the performance of the temporary teeth for chewing, biting, and aesthetics.

If the temporary teeth deliver a beautiful, natural, and a comfortable smile, and also gives you the freedom and confidence to laugh and eat the food you want, it will be worn for 4-6 months until the final bridge is made.

Get an Instantly More Beautiful You

The All-On- 4 procedure doesn’t just result in a confident and beautiful smile, it can also make you look younger.

Missing teeth can cause the underlying bone to deteriorate. Loss of bone can lead to your cheeks appearing sunken, making you look older than you are. The new set of beautiful replacement teeth will support your cheeks once again.

Teeth in a Day Could Be the Procedure for You!

You can have a new set of teeth that is more comfortable and efficient than dentures. Get a whole new smile within just a day. Find out if the Teeth in a Day procedure is the treatment for your needs by contacting Hill Country Oral Surgery.