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Candy is a great way to show you care about someone, but even better is when you go a step further.Valentine's candy

Valentine’s Day sweets don’t necessarily show a lot of love for your smile. But there are ways to make taking care of your loved ones’ teeth part of the holiday fun.

Many parents celebrate the holiday by giving their kids Valentine’s candy, and though dental professional stress moderation with sugary treats, most discourage depriving kids of holiday experiences.  Treats shouldn’t be forbidden (that can create a lot of other issues)–kids just need to know that with them comes some responsibility.

So here are some tips for making Valentine candy a sweeter experience for everyone’s teeth.

1.  As you’re picking up candy, also get new toothbrushes along with their favorite tooth paste for everyone.  Brushes should be changed every 3-4 months, and having a new brush reinforces the idea that brushing is an important part of the holiday.  (If you followed the same procedure at Halloween, Valentine’s Day is a great reminder to change brushes again.)

2.  Designate times for treats, followed immediately by brushing.  No one should nosh on candy all day long (or too close to meals or bedtime), so pick times for kids to enjoy their sweets.  Follow up right after with brushing.

3. Remember that quality can be much better than quantity.  So instead of a big bag of candy, smaller supplies of better chocolates can limit the risk of sweets.  In fact, you can impress your sweetheart with a combination of flowers, cards, and just a couple of great sweets, because you’ve obviously put a lot of thought into choosing “just the right mix” of gifts.

Want to know more?  Use the “Ask the Expert” feature of our website to get questions answered and to learn other good dental care tips.


Smiling Business Team at ComputerPart of our ongoing series on careers in dentistry.  Charlotte Dentistry® encourages young people to consider the dental profession, and welcomes any questions you may have.

As your dental practice begins to grow, you start reaching limitations based primarily on your time—after all; you can only perform so many examinations and procedures.  You can add some growth by improving the efficiency of your operations—having dental assistants or hygienists handle more basic tasks, and having office staff take on more management duties.  But at some point, you will max out your ability to do more work.

That’s where the idea of taking on partners or associates comes in.  You increase the available-to-sell time for dental procedures, and you share office and staffing expenses.  There are, however, a few challenges to finding the right professionals to fit into your mix.

First is the fact that there are more dentists retiring than there are entering practice, so finding new dentists willing to join your practice can be a challenge.  Since they’re in demand, you may find that you have to offer more incentives or money to get good people on board.  This can still be more than worthwhile, but it’s important to understand market conditions as your start your search—you may find it more difficult than you imagined.

The second key issue to consider is whether you’re willing to have an actual partner versus an associate or associates.  Partnership means sharing management decisions (and responsibilities) and sharing the profits of the practice.  If you take on associates, you keep most of the management control and ultimately control of the practice finances, but you may find that you’re spending more time on the business and less with patients.

A number of consulting and recruiting firms have been created to help dentists as they expand.  And if you have specific questions, use the “Ask the Expert” feature of our website.


Part of our ongoing series on careers in dentistry.  Charlotte Dentistry® encourages young people to consider the dental profession, and welcomes any questions you may have.

Many dental students, as they start looking at their careers and how they want to develop them, begin weighing whether or not it would be better to have a general dentistry practice or to concentrate on a specialty.Dentist

There are advantages to each.

The demand for general dentistry continues to grow, and many new dentists will find that they can be successful in general dentistry from the moment they leave school.  Developing a practice in general dentistry is aided by the fact that virtually everyone needs general dental care, and even in cities with established dentists, there are locations where a new dentist can do well.  General dentistry requires less training than a specialty, and graduates can get through school faster and begin earning to pay off school loans more quickly.

Specialties, however, are more lucrative in the long run.  Currently, the American Dental Association recognizes nine specialty areas of practice:   Dental Public Health, Endodontics, Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology, Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Pediatric Dentistry, Peridontics, Prosthodontics, and Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics.

There is more training involved with specialties, both in dental school and in keeping abreast of new procedures and technologies after graduation, but specialists typically have patient loads that compensation for the extra investment.  Many of their patients are referred by general dentistry practices.

Many practices may ultimately combine both, as Charlotte Dentistry® does with general dentistry, where our general practice dentists have successfully completed extensive specialized training in Orthodontics, Prosthodontics and Endodontics.  This has allowed us to continue building our practice, and given us opportunities to better serve patients who need specialized care at one familiar location.

To learn more, use the “Ask the Expert” feature of our website.  We’re glad to answer questions from people interested in dentistry as a career.

Part of our ongoing series on careers in dentistry.  Charlotte Dentistry encourages young people to consider the dental profession, and welcomes any questions you may have.

So you’re headed off to college, and you’re considering the idea of becoming a dentist.  What do you study?students thinking

There is no formal undergraduate major required for students who want to go to dental school.  But most dental schools have well-defined requirements for science courses, including chemistry, physics, math, and biology.  Many students considering dental school choose a science major for their undergraduate work, which prepares them for a postgraduate dental program.

However, this is not the only path to dental school.  A number of colleges offer pre-dental programs, which can accelerate the student’s course of study.  In some cases, instead of completing a bachelor’s degree, the pre-dental program allows the student to move through undergraduate studies faster and begin graduate work at a dental school level.  Such programs may allow a student to complete a dental school degree in fewer years by including courses such as organic chemistry and microbiology required by dental schools.

A pre-dental program also helps students prepared for the Dental Admissions Test (DAT) required for admission into dental school.

Either approach to undergraduate study can provide the right preparation for dental school.  It depends on your personal preferences, schools you prefer to attend, and—in some cases—program cost.

Need to know more?  High school guidance counselors can also provide information. In some communities, the Boy Scouts offer an Explorer program that features dentistry as a career.  The American Dental Association website has a special section devoted to education, just click here.

And you can always use the “Ask The Expert” feature of our website to get answers.  We’re glad to help.

Sadly, the summer is over and it’s time to return to school. There are lots of things to consider and plan for:students classes to choose, fashion selections, extracurricular activities—and what career possibilities to begin considering. Because what you do in high school does have an impact on your career choice options.

Here’s some food for thought: Have you ever thought of a career in dentistry? It’s profitable. It’s recession proof. And it can change the lives of people you treat.

Today dentistry offers many exciting opportunities such as private practice, hospital setting, teaching dentistry, or dental research. The military offers the luxury of traveling the world and helping others with their dental health.

Intrigued? Click here for more details from the ADA about dentistry as a career. And Charlotte Dentistry® welcomes questions about our profession from young people (and their parents). Make a list and bring in with your next checkup. We’ll be glad to provide answers.
Or you can visit the “Ask the Expert” page on our website to get answers. We’ll also be doing more blogs about this topic in the future, so stay tuned!

Invisalign Elite TOP 1%Taquana “Tabby” Sears: My Invisalign® Ride: And The Ride Goes On. . .

Taquana “Tabby” Sears, a Charlotte Dentistry® patient, has agreed to share her Invisalign experience with us on a regular basis. For the last several months, she’s given us reports on how she’s doing with Invisalign® invisible braces, including ups and downs. Below is her latest blog entry.

At last weeks visit, I picked up trays 7-9. HOPEFULLY these are the last trays to complete my Invisalign journey. The one stubborn tooth has finally begun to move and make some real progress! I can definitely see the positioning of this tooth improving.

This has been an incredible ride. People who don’t know I have been wearing Invisalign still can’t tell. I constantly get compliments on my smile!
People always ask, “Who IS your dentist?” I proudly say with my new smile beaming – “Dr. Armstrong at Charlotte Dentistry is MY dentist and I love what he and Invisalign have accomplished with my smile!”

Since I’m an adult working in the Charlotte corporate scene, I know Invisalign was definitely the right choice for me as opposed to non-removable braces. I can conduct meetings without my braces being a distraction. Also, Invisalign doesn’t cut or scrap lips, gum and inside of your cheeks as wire braces tend to do.
This entire journey has been with almost NO discomfort. Yes, in the beginning, there were times when I experienced a good amount of tightness. This was typically on the first day I changed out to a new tray. However, the next day, all was fine again. The tightness would decrease and I was totally fine! No complaints from me. I am thoroughly pleased with the results I have today. Looking forward to continuing life with my new beautiful smile!

Thinking about getting Invisalign? Drop me line. I would be glad to answer any questions you may have.
You can also get answers on Invisalign by using the “Ask The Expert” feature on the Charlotte Dentistry website. Click here.

Taquana “Tabby” Sears, a Charlotte Dentistry® patient, has agreed to share her Invisalign® experience with us on a regular basis. For the last several months, she’s given us reports on how she’s doing with Invisalign®, including ups and downs. Below is her latest blog entry.

I hoped on this visit that I would be completely finished with my Invisalign treatment.  But I’m not quite there yet.

I learned that one of my upper teeth—number 11—is being very stubborn. New upper trays are needed to move this tooth into proper alignment. AlignerMy bottom teeth are perfect, so I’m very happy about that.
In the past, to get new trays, the dentist would have to take messy, putty like impressions of my teeth (that sometime make you gag). But time it was different—and really cool!

Charlotte Dentistry has a great new piece of equipment, the iTero Digital Impression machine. It takes 3-D images of my teeth. As the pictures are taken, they appear on a computer screen and even tell the operator if the tooth or area needs to be re-scanned.  It built a 3D model of my teeth right before my eyes!

VERY high-tech.

And the accuracy of the models made from these 3-D images is better than regular impressions. The new trays should arrive in 4 weeks. So the Invisalign ride goes on…..

Dr. Armstrong did some smoothing and shaping of a few teeth and also provided bleaching solution and instructions on how to use it. Now I will have a BRIGHT white, straight smile!

The Charlotte Dentistry team and Dr. Armstrong have made my Invisalign journey a wonderful experience. I’m so pleased with the result so far. I can hardly wait to see the finished product – MY beautiful smile!

I’m always glad to share my experience so if you’re considering orthodontics, drop me a line!

Ranked In The Top 1% Of ALL Providers In NORTH AMERICA

Since 2007, Charlotte Dentistry® has held a unique distinction among practices offering Invisalign® and Invisalign Teen®— designated an Invisalign® Elite Preferred Provider.  In 2012, Charlotte DentistInvisalign® Top 1%ry® is ranked among the Top 1% of All providers in North America—the Only office in the Carolinas to earn this ranking.

Being recognized in the Top 1% is Truly an honor for us, and it shows the dedication of our dental professionals to providing the best care possible. Having treated more than 2,000 Invisalign® patients and even more traditional braces patients speaks volumes for the level of expertise provided to our patients.

Is Invisalign® Right For You, Or For A Family Member?

The Invisalign® system provides a series of clear plastic “trays” that are worn over the teeth.  The system is virtually invisible, and can be removed for cleaning or eating.  Trays are switched out at intervals, with each tray gradually moving teeth to the desired position.

Invisalign® works for more and more people, but there are still situations where certain patients can benefit more from traditional metal braces.  Charlotte Dentistry® works with each patient to choose the treatment path that offers the best results.

A Continually Improving Technology

Recent technology advancements have made Invisalign® technology even more effective.  Trays can now be more customized to move your teeth in the proper direction with the use of “attachments,” which are temporarily tooth-colored “buttons” bonded to teeth that require more rotation or movement than others.  And other improvements have helped make Invisalign® more comfortable and easier to use.  (This is where our experience plays a big role—we can help you utilize these advancements to create the optimum program for making your smile the best it can possibly be)

Want to know more about Invisalign® or Invisalign Teen®?  Check out our Invisalign® Page and watch the short Video. Also feel free to ask questions on the “Ask The Expert” feature of our website, or to schedule a FREE Invisalign® consultation (which includes a FREE Oral-B power brush).

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