Q: I’m pregnant, and lately my gums have been really sore. I’ve also been getting red little bumps on my gums that don’t go away. Could these problems be related to my pregnancy?A: When you are pregnant your hormones cause a lot of changes to your body, and this often includes gum problems. Many women experience redness, soreness and tenderness in their gums, and sometimes their gums bleed when they brush. The increased level of progesterone in a pregnant woman’s body can cause an extreme response to plaque, a process we call pregnancy gingivitis. Pregnancy gingivitis is especially common between the second and eighth month, so it’s a good idea to schedule extra cleanings during the second and third trimester.

Pregnant women in the second trimester can also experience an overgrowth of the gums between the teeth, a benign but bothersome condition known as a pregnancy tumor. These bumps are red and raw, and they bleed easily. They usually go away by the time your baby is born, but in cases where they interfere with eating or talking they need to be removed surgically.

The gum soreness and bumps you’re experiencing are probably related to your pregnancy, but it’s very important to have a dentist take a look so you can be sure.

Dr. Natalie Khadavi
sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

What is a dry socket?

Q: I’ve heard people talk about getting a dry socket. What is it?
A: Sometimes, following a tooth extraction, the remaining socket can be slow to heal. This is a dry socket, technically known as alveolar osteitis. Dry socket problems typically begin two or more days after an extraction, and they can be very painful.

The dentist will cleanse the dry socket and place a medicated dressing in it, which will help relieve the pain. Sometimes the dentist will have to change the dressing every day, until the pain subsides and the socket heals. The patient may take a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, such as ibuprofen.

Dry sockets are fairly uncommon, with wisdom teeth being the most frequent site. Factors leading to dry socket include smoking, taking oral contraceptives and not following your dentist’s directions for post-extraction care.


Dr. Natalie Khadavi
sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

Q: I’m thinking about getting veneers. I’ve heard veneers are fragile. Will having them affect what kinds of food I can eat?
A: Veneers are an excellent way to improve your smile. They can correct gaps between your teeth, cover misshapen or discolored teeth, and more. But veneers will never be quite as strong as your natural teeth, and they do require some special considerations. Having veneers won’t require you to make radical changes to your diet, but you will have to adjust your eating habits somewhat.

You should avoid using your veneers to chew really crunchy food, like hard nuts, or really sticky food, like taffy. If you are eating a crunchy food like an apple, slice it up first so you can chew it with your back teeth instead of biting into it with your veneers. Only a trained dentist can tell you if you are a good candidate for veneers and what may be special considerations for your particular case.
Dr. Natalie Khadavi
sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

LA Kings’ defenseman Drew Doughty returns to play this week after being sidelined since October 20th with a concussion. Doughty told the LA Times that a few “little minor” concussions have kept him off the ice in the past, and he’s finally ready to start wearing a mouthguard.

“I’m not a fan of the mouthguard. I should be,” he said. “The team is trying to get me to wear it, so I think I’m going to start wearing one now… I’m going to have to get used to it real quick here. Concussions are a bad thing.”

If you participate in sports, especially a rough sport like hockey, you definitely need a mouthguard. Don’t wait until you break a tooth or suffer from an avoidable concussion like Drew Doughty. Visit us today! We can make one designed especially for you in whatever color you choose.

Dr. Natalie Khadavi sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

Now accepting Denti-Cal

We are pleased to announce that we are now a California Medi-Cal Dental Program (Denti-Cal) provider. Children (under age 20) have unlimited benefits for all services, including cleanings, fillings and extractions. Adult patients (over 21) are covered for all emergency services.

If you’re a member of the California Medi-Cal Dental Program, give us a call today and we’ll be happy to see you.

Dr. Natalie Khadavi sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

"Do athletes have a higher cavity risk?"

Q: I’ve heard that athletes have a higher risk for cavities. Is this true?
A: Yes, it’s true. Athletes have a high risk for cavities, for several reasons. In order to build up their energy, many athletes consume high-carb or acidic foods like nutrition bars and sports drinks. They will often consume these foods in the middle of working out or during a break on the field, and then they resume exercising. As they exercise they’ll breath hard through their mouths, which reduces saliva production and leaves them more vulnerable to decay.

If you’re an athlete, you should take special precautions to protect your teeth. Brush and floss with extra care, and chew sugarless gum after meals to help cleanse particles of food from your teeth. Talk to your dentist about possible treatments, like a fluoride program.

Dr. Natalie Khadavi
sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

Q: Is bottled water better or worse for my teeth than tap water?
A: The American Dental Association strongly recommends tap water over bottled water. The fluoridation in tap water helps prevent tooth decay, but most bottled waters lack the optimum level (0.7-1.2 ppm) of fluoride.

If you do drink bottled water, check the label to find out the level of fluoridation. You may need supplemental fluoride tablets.

Dr. Natalie Khadavi
sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

"The Haunted Mouth"

Just in time for Halloween, here’s a short educational film hosted by the spooky Mr. Plaque….

Dr. Natalie Khadavi sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

Culver City Dentist: How dentures are made

From the Discovery Channel series How It’s Made, here’s an interesting look at how dentures are made.

Dr. Natalie Khadavi
sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

"What are dental sealants?"

Q: What are dental sealants?
A: The chewing surfaces of your child’s back teeth contain many fissures and pits. Even if your child brushes and flosses regularly, these areas are still difficult to keep clean. Plaque tends to build up here, often leading to tooth decay. Sealant is a clear or opaque plastic material that we can carefully paint onto the surfaces of the teeth. It forms a thin covering over the pits and fissures, helping to protect the teeth from plaque build-up.

Dr. Natalie Khadavi sees patients in the Los Angeles area. Visit our website or give us a call at (310) 482-3971 for more information about how we can provide you and your family with healthy smiles that last a lifetime.

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