My Blog

Posts for: January, 2018

By J. Michael Plyler, DDS, PA
January 17, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: braces   orthodontics  

Orthodontic treatment can help you improve the appearance and positioning of your teeth. It can also help you with issues related to your orthodonticsjaw. Some treatments can be completed in as little as six months. Find out more about orthodontics and the treatment options that you can discuss with Dr. J. Michael Plyler in Hot Springs, AR.

Why Choose Orthodontic Treatment?
There are a few common reasons why a patient might decide to go to the dentist for orthodontic treatment. Here are some of the most common reasons:

  • You are having issues with wisdom teeth that are pushing the teeth out of alignment.
  • You have unattractive spaces and gaps in your teeth.
  • Some of the teeth are crowding or there is an abnormal eruption (extra tooth on the gumline).
  • You're having bite problems that make it difficult to chew and talk (open bite, overbite, crossbite, or underbite).

Orthodontics Is for Children and Adults
Dentists will usually recommend that patients have orthodontic treatment in their pre-teens—sometimes as early as age seven. This is because their teeth are still in the development phase, so their orthodontic issues can be fixed more easily. However, adults also often inquire about orthodontics because they want to perfect their smiles for professional and social reasons. Your Hot Springs dentist will carefully examine your smile and create a complete orthodontic treatment plan that's right for you.

What to Expect When Getting Braces
The traditional orthodontic method is metal braces, which are made of brackets and wires. A small metal bracket is attached to each tooth to provide individual support for a wire that will move your teeth into a better position. The entire process is completed in one appointment and you'll come in every few weeks for a checkup and adjustments. 

See if Orthodontic Treatment Is Right for You
Even if you are well past your pre-teen or teenage years, orthodontics can benefit your smile. Call (501) 623-7113 today to schedule a visit with Dr. Plyler at his office in Hot Springs, AR.


By J. Michael Plyler, DDS, PA
January 17, 2018
Category: Oral Health
BeyonceMakesFlossingaFamilyAffair

As is the case with most celebs today, Beyonce is no stranger to sharing on social media… but she really got our attention with a video she recently posted on instagram. The clip shows the superstar songstress — along with her adorable three-year old daughter Blue Ivy — flossing their teeth! In the background, a vocalist (sounding remarkably like her husband Jay-Z) repeats the phrase “flossin’…flossin’…” as mom and daughter appear to take care of their dental hygiene in time with the beat: https://instagram.com/p/073CF1vw07/?taken-by=beyonce

We’re happy that this clip highlights the importance of helping kids get an early start on good oral hygiene. And, according to authorities like the American Dental Association and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, age 3 is about the right time for kids to begin getting involved in the care of their own teeth.

Of course, parents should start paying attention to their kids’ oral hygiene long before age three. In fact, as soon as baby’s tiny teeth make their first appearance, the teeth and gums can be cleaned with a soft brush or cloth and a smear of fluoride toothpaste, about the size of a grain of rice. Around age 3, kids will develop the ability to spit out toothpaste. That’s when you can increase the amount of toothpaste a little, and start explaining to them how you clean all around the teeth on the top and bottom of the mouth. Depending on your child’s dexterity, age 3 might be a good time to let them have a try at brushing by themselves.

Ready to help your kids take the first steps to a lifetime of good dental checkups? Place a pea-sized dab of fluoride toothpaste on a soft-bristled brush, and gently guide them as they clean in front, in back, on all surfaces of each tooth. At first, it’s a good idea to take turns brushing. That way, you can be sure they’re learning the right techniques and keeping their teeth plaque-free, while making the experience challenging and fun.

Most kids will need parental supervision and help with brushing until around age 6. As they develop better hand-eye coordination and the ability to follow through with the cleaning regimen, they can be left on their own more. But even the best may need some “brushing up” on their tooth-cleaning techniques from time to time.

What about flossing? While it’s an essential part of good oral hygiene, it does take a little more dexterity to do it properly. Flossing the gaps between teeth should be started when the teeth begin growing close to one another. Depending on how a child’s teeth are spaced, perhaps only the back ones will need to be flossed at first. Even after they learn to brush, kids may still need help flossing — but a floss holder (like the one Beyonce is using in the clip) can make the job a lot easier.

If you would like more information about maintaining your children’s oral hygiene, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Top 10 Oral Health Tips For Children” and “How to Help Your Child Develop the Best Habits for Oral Health.”


By J. Michael Plyler, DDS, PA
January 02, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: dental implants  
3ReasonsforWhyItsaSmartMovetoInvestinDentalImplants

When it comes to replacing a missing tooth, you have several options, including a removable partial denture or a fixed bridge. But the premier choice is “the new kid on the block” at just over thirty years old: dental implants. Implants are by far the most popular tooth replacement choice among both patients and dentists.

But they also happen to be the most expensive option, at least initially. So the question is, why invest in dental implants over less costly choices?

Here are 3 reasons why implants could be well worth their price.

More Like a real tooth than other restorations. Implants can match the life-like appearance of any other replacement choice, often utilizing the same types of materials. But where they really excel is in function—how they perform while biting and chewing. This is because the dental implant’s titanium post imbedded in the jawbone replaces the tooth root. No other dental restoration can do that—or perform better when comparing the resulting functionality.

Best long-term solution. As we mentioned before, the initial implant cost is typically higher than either dentures or bridges. But you should also consider their durability compared to other choices. It could be potentially much longer—possibly decades. This is because the titanium post creates an ultra-strong hold in the jawbone as bone cells naturally grow and adhere to this particular metal. The resulting hold can withstand the daily forces generated during eating and chewing. With proper care they might even last a lifetime, and actually cost you less in the long run over other choices.

Adaptable to other types of restoration. Implants have greater uses other than as individual tooth replacements. A few strategically placed implants can also be used to support removable dentures or a fixed bridge for multiple teeth or an entire dental arch. As the technology continues to advance, implants are helping to make other restoration options stronger, more stable and longer lasting—and adding more value to your investment.

If you would like more information on dental implants, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Dental Implants 101.”