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Letter From Dear Doctor

Issue 35 of Dear Doctor Magazine

Taking Care of Your One-Of-A-Kind Smile

All humans have many features in common: a pair of arms and legs, 23 pairs of chromosomes, and a brain that (mostly) keeps things under control — just to name a few. Yet in another sense, each of us is unique: We have different faces, a distinct genetic makeup, various goals and dreams…and one-of-a-kind smiles. In this issue of Dear Doctor, we take a closer look at those unique smiles — and how to keep them functioning properly and looking great.

Actress Mayim Bialik, who plays the lovably geeky scientist Amy Farrah Fowler on the hit TV show The Big Bang Theory, has made a career of being different. Before taking on her current starring role, she earned a PhD in neuroscience from UCLA; and before that, she was a child actor. She's also a vegan and a single mom. "I'm different, and I can't not be different," she proudly asserts. In our cover story, Mayim talks about getting her own kids to brush and floss regularly, and shares a very creative tip for avoiding Halloween candy.

When it comes to oral health, everyone really is unique. We all have different needs that may change at various points during our lifetime. Some need to pay extra-special attention, while others can get by with just routine care. But if you're not convinced that you need to be proactive about your oral health, take a look at our feature "How Gum Disease Gets Started." You may never take your gums for granted again.

Regular brushing and flossing is key to maintaining good oral health at any age. But which one should you do first? We present two different points of view from two dental experts, each making a case for their preferred method. Read them both before you make up your mind!

Maintaining good oral hygiene is a concern at any age — but some dental issues are best dealt with in childhood. For example, some kids who have bite problems can benefit from interceptive orthodontic treatment. Our feature story explains the special tools and techniques orthodontists use on their youngest patients to bring teeth into better alignment, in harmony with the natural growth patterns in children's jaws.

Mature adults may also face some unique dental challenges. "How Your Dentist Can Make You Look Younger" explores various techniques that can help rejuvenate your smile and brighten up your whole appearance. And our story on overdentures and fixed dentures explains how dental implants can add a new level of stability and aesthetics to these tried-and-true replacement teeth.

As individuals, we all have different needs as regards our oral health. But most of the time, our goals are the same: to show the world a smile that's healthy and bright, one that looks and functions as it should. Here at Dear Doctor, our goal is to help you get — and keep — that unique smile.


Mario A.Vilardi, DMD

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