8
Nov

Neighborhood Favorite 2019 Winner!

Excited to be A Nextdoor Neighborhood Favorite Dentist!

westlake dentist How many of you have heard about Nextdoor? It’s a free private social network for your neighborhood community. It’s like a Facebook group that only your neighbors can join, and neighbors always have the best local suggestions, don’t they? This is one of the many reasons why we love Nextdoor.

Did we also mention that we were awarded a Nextdoor Neighborhood Favorite Award this year? It’s Nextdoor’s annual awards program that gives neighbors an opportunity to recognize the most beloved businesses in their local community. Only 1% of all businesses win this award – and we’re honored to be able to say that Michael C. Bell, DDS, PC is one of them! 

Local businesses are the heart of our community. We are proud to be one of the local businesses serving the Westlake Hills and Austin area, and we’d like to thank the local Nextdoor community and our wonderful patients for bestowing us with this award. 

31
Oct

We’re Now Experts at Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy!

 

“Nothing is as important than taking the next breath,” said Dr. Roger Price, Director of Professional Services at the Graduate School for Behavioral Health Sciences during a recent continuing education course that Dr. Bell and two of our rockstar dental hygienists, Diana and Lou Ann, recently attended.

Orofacial Myofunctional TherapyThe course, which was sponsored by the San Antonio Academy of General Dentistry, focused on the importance of nasal breathing for the body to function effectively and covered the latest research on breathing from Dr. Price.

In Dr. Price’s words: “The medical model has failed and it is time for the dentists to take over. Sleep does NOT disorder breathing; it just makes already dysfunctional breathing worse.” Dr. Price coined the phrase, Breathing Disordered Sleep, which is the breathing that causes sleep issues (not sleep disordered breathing).

Our team learned how to screen for undiagnosed breathing disorders that are impacting your quality of life. We’re able to evaluate your breathing to see if there is an issue, and if one is detected we can help you to retrain yourself to breath effectively with Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy.

Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy

teaches a patient how to use the proper posture and function of the muscles of the face and mouth. Improper function of these muscles can negatively impact breathing, breastfeeding, proper growth and development of the face and jaws, chewing, swallowing, alignment of teeth, speech, bite, snoring, sleep, jaw joint movement and function, stability of orthodontic treatment, gum disease, and more. Who knew it was so important?! This therapy can be used for patients that have suffered a stroke, young children with jaw malformation, and also with kids who have ADD diagnosis.

Do you think you may have a breathing issue? Call us to schedule an appointment and our team can help!

Dr Bell is committed to always providing the best treatments available for all of his patients and has paid tuition for Lou Ann who is nearing completion of her Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy Certification.It will be so exciting for us to be able to offer these screenings and services in our office soon.

 

18
Sep

Why Are Switching to Oryx Practice Management Software

We’re excited to announce that we are in the process of updating to a new software called Oryx (from Dentrix) to manage your care. Here’s some information about Oryx!

  • Oryx is a single, global cloud-based platform that offers everyone in our dental office the ability to serve or patients more efficiently and effectively.
  • Engagement tools for patients like you, along with a science-based clinical module, automated risk assessment and diagnosis, and billing and advanced reporting all in one place. 
  • Not only is data gathering more efficient and beneficial for your care now, but Oryx was also designed specifically to align with our Kois Center training. 
  • When coming in for the first time as a new patient or getting a regular check-up, Oryx helps us provide a full mouth health report on your teeth, gums, bite and jaw joint and appearance. 
  • One of the things we’re most excited about how patient-centered and patient-friendly Oryx is. You will walk out the door with a color-coded written report— with red for areas that need immediate attention, yellow for areas that need to be monitored and may become concerns down the road, and green for healthy areas of the mouth that function well and look good. 
  • We are training and learning the new Oryx software, and should be converted over the next month or so.  Our goal is to be ‘live’ on Oryx by November 1st.
  • While we do not anticipate any difficulties on the conversion, if there are some ‘hiccups’……pardon our progress!

We can’t wait for you to experience it and look forward to seeing you during your next appointment! If you’re due for a checkup visit, call us at 512.327.7750.

11
Sep

New Patient Experience at Dr. Bell’s Office

At Dr. Bell’s dental practice, one of the things we pride ourselves on is our commitment to providing excellent care that consistently exceeds expectations. We love welcoming new patients into our practice and are proud of the highly efficient, personalized, and in- depth experience that we take pride in offering on a patient’s the first visit. 

Check out this video to take a glimpse into what it’s like to walk into our practice for the first time— from the moment when you walk in and are greeted by our smiling dental admin assistants, to when Dr. Bell comes to meet you and take you on a tour of the entire office, to the comprehensive consultation and dental exam, culminating with the creation of a personalized treatment plan designed based on your needs and concerns. 

 

Do you have a friend or family member who needs a dentist? Dr. Bell offers $10 worth of “Bell Bucks” for any goods or services at our office.  Oh yes, and you will also get a $5 Starbucks card and a personal thank you from Dr. Bell when you make a referral! 

30
Aug

Back-to-School Whitening Special Now through the End of September

This month, communities across Austin, West Lake Hills and the country are preparing for a new school year. Dr. Michael Bell, your General and Cosmetic dentist in 78746, wants to remind you that you can start off with a beautiful, confident smile with a quick back-to-school teeth whitening treatment!

Back to school Whitening

We’re excited to announce a new Back-to-School, End of Summer Whitening Sale for dramatically brighter smiles! Now through the end of September, we are taking $100 off our in-office whitening and $50 off the take-home whitening.

The take-home whitening consists of professionally made whitening trays made from accurate dental impressions, with 16% or 22% Venus White Max Gel. In-office whitening is done in about an hour and a half with a direct application of Venus White Max (a 36% hydrogen peroxide whitening gel). When in-office whitening is chosen, a set of custom whitening trays are also made and given with touch-up gel for at home use. We usually recommend touching up about every 3 to 4 months depending on habits like smoking, heavy tea and coffee consumption.

Press the Refresh Button on Your Smile

Tooth discoloration and staining is a natural side-effect of aging — or, as we like to think of it, of a life well-lived. Repeated exposure to highly-pigmented items like coffee, red wine, and dark chocolate causes the teeth to gradually darken over time. Tobacco use, poor dental hygiene, and certain medications also play a role in dental discoloration. Chronic mouth breathing can darken teeth as well.  If you have started to notice your teeth looking a little dingier than you’d like, it’s time for a professional teeth whitening. After the application, teeth are dramatically whiter — and you are flashing your most confident smile yet.

Why Choose Professional Teeth Whitening?

With so many whitening options available at the pharmacy, what’s the point in investing in professional teeth whitening? It’s a valid question — but we want to remind you that nothing is as strong as the professional-grade whitening solution found with the Venus White Max Whitening offered by Dr. Bell. Over-the-counter options just don’t whiten as well. What’s more, Dr. Bell can take special factors, like tooth sensitivity, into consideration. And since when was a smile one-size-fits-all? White strips and other generic teeth whitening kits can put your gum tissue at risk for exposure to the bleaching gel. For the best, safest, most effective results, professional teeth whitening at the dental office is the way to go.

Maintaining Your Whitening Results

Immediately after you have completed your professional teeth whitening treatment, your teeth will be more susceptible to the items that caused them to discolor in the first place. To avoid diminishing your whitening results, do not use tobacco and stay away from dark foods and beverages for the first two days. These include coffee, dark soda, ripe berries, red wine, rare steak, and other items. A good rule of thumb is that if it can stain your shirt, it can stain your teeth. Protect your smile by sticking to white or light-colored foods right at first. Baked chicken and potatoes, anyone?

Schedule Back-to-School Whitening Today!

Get ready to look your best this fall with a quick back-to-school teeth whitening with Dr. Bell and his team! Contact us to schedule an appointment today before this limited time special ends. We can’t wait to show you just how fantastic your smile can look.

12
Jul

Cosmetic Dentistry Toolkit Spotlight on ClearCorrect

It’s no secret that everyone wants beautiful, straight smiles! To help our patients achieve this, ClearCorrect invisible braces are a great alternative to metal braces. No wires and no brackets … just clear, convenient comfort — and lots of great reasons to smile.

 

With ClearCorrect, we can straighten your teeth using a series of clear, custom, removable aligners. Each aligner moves your teeth just a little bit at a time until you eventually get straight teeth. 

 

This remarkably effective and discreet solution aligns and straightens a broad range of conditions. Compared to traditional wires and brackets, clear aligners are:

  • Comfortable. Compared to traditional braces, clear aligners are comfortable.
  • Removable. It’s easy to remove aligners and eat whatever you like. There are no wires to trap food or get in the way when you floss.
  • Discreet. Clear aligners show off your smile, so most people won’t even notice you’re wearing them.

Dr. Bell had metal braces before invisible braces were an option, and we asked him to share a memory or experience from that time with us. In case you’re in need of a chuckle, here’s what he said: 

“I was having a nice dinner at Pecan Street Cafe with my wife at the time, and we were splitting an order of blueberry crepes. I said something witty (I thought) and smiled. Then she started laughing hysterically, and I kept asking her what was so funny? She couldn’t stop laughing every time I talked, and finally she told me to go look at my teeth in the bathroom (while still laughing). I went to the restroom and discovered I had soft blueberries in every wire and bracket of my braces! It looked so bad I started laughing hysterically too!”

On the flip side of that story, our amazing longtime patient Katie Blackwell is one of the many fans and users of ClearCorrect at our dental office. Katie says: 

“I love picking up my Clear Correct aligners so my teeth can be even more straight and perfect! Huge thanks to the BEST dentist in all of the land, Dr. Michael C. Bell. ♥️

Contact us today to find out if you are a good candidate for this minimally invasive technique for straightening teeth. To find out more about Dr. Bell’s clear orthodontics, click here.

12
Jun

CEREC crowns made in one appointment at the Westlake Hills office of Dr. Michael C. Bell

We are Proud to Offer the Latest in Single-Visit Crown Technology! – *CEREC Primescan*

CEREC Primescan is a breakthrough computerized 3D technology and replaces the CEREC Omnicam with improved ease of use for the patient and accuracy for the dentist. This technology allows us to create custom dental crowns and veneers right in our office. By using this advanced technology, we can give our patients custom excellently matched and, superbly fitted dental crowns— all during a single appointment!

The creation and placement of a custom-designed dental crown is one of the most commonly performed treatments in dentistry. Dental crowns fit over the entire tooth and are typically used to reinforce a tooth that is heavily damaged or decayed. They are also normally required for restoring teeth after root canal procedures and placing teeth on dental implants. Crowns are one of the most predicable and long-lasting dental restorations.

Single-Visit Crown Technology Austin

In the past, crowns and other types of dental restorations traditionally required a time-consuming process that would normally take weeks. With advances in the CEREC in-office milling system, that process can be completed in about TWO HOURS rather than TWO WEEKS!  No temporary crowns, no second visit to fit the crowns! CEREC crowns can be made right here at the Westlake Hills office of Dr. Michael C. Bell in a single appointment!

CEREC dental crowns also do not require you to have a physical dental impression, which necessitates placing a gooey impression material in a tray in your mouth for several minutes. With CEREC, the impression is taken digital scan and a digital file is created, then a computer program is used to design your dental restoration to a very custom dental anatomy based on incredible algorithms to mimic your existing natural teeth. The result— Westlake Hills dentist Dr. Bell will create a precisely fitting and natural looking dental crown.

CEREC crowns are ultimately superior to Lab made crowns. Studies show that CEREC crowns are more accurate than a lab-fabricated crown.

The process in which a lab crown is made has so many steps involved which can introduce inaccuracies from the initial impression to the variability of the laboratory techniques and skill of the lab technician. Even if all the variables in the impression and laboratory are as perfect as they can be, it’s still not as accurate as a direct 3D scan of the mouth directly into the computer, and the milling process is much more accurate in the fit of the final crown.

While the large majority of our crowns will be scanned and made ‘in house’, there are situations where the optical scanner may not be able to ‘read’ the whole tooth. So, if the crown must go way below the gumline due to decay or an old restoration that was placed deeply to begin with, the technique with impressions and temporary crowns will be necessary. This will be the exception, but will give the better result in certain cases where the scanner optics cannot ‘see’ below the gumline.

With CEREC Primescan, your restoration is scanned accurately within a few microns and then the crown is milled in less than five minutes.  We then will place the crown in our porcelain oven to crystallize, harden and characterize the porcelain to match your other teeth. The CEREC crowns often times need virtually no adjustments and is placed the same day. This is especially beneficial for multiple crowns as the computer will design everything as ideally as possible, taking into account the patient’s bite and current dentition, as well as the patients desires and Dr. Bells care, skill, and judgement.

The Primescan and CEREC milling technology is an outward sign of our commitment to provide the most advanced and comfortable care for our patients. It is a pleasure to be of service to you, your family, and friends

See if you are a good candidate for the CEREC crown.

Schedule a Consultation today
31
May

Austin Certified Total Health Dental Practice

Why We Chose to Become
Certified Total Health Dental Practice?

Our dental office in the heart of Westlake Hills has completed an in-depth curriculum called Total Health Academy. What does it mean to be a certified practice in Total Health Dentistry, you ask? It means we can help our patients play a critical role in their oral and their overall systemic health.

It wasn’t too long ago that dentists thought the mouth was its own private space and that not much of what went on in there was linked to the rest of the body– and vice versa. Signs of the most prevalent systemic diseases we encounter today, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, acid reflux, fungal infections, and food sensitivities show up in abundance inside the mouth. This makes it impossible to ignore the many connections between the mouth and the body.

Certified Total Health Dental Practice

As well, oral diseases (such as periodontal disease, caries, oral pharyngeal cancer, and bite and jaw problems) often aggravate and can wreak havoc with the rest of your systemic health.  Our goal is to become a health resource to direct you to excellent practitioners who agree with our philosophy… We want to help you maintain and improve your health, not just treat problems and disease as they arise.

Our new knowledge in total health dentistry means we can play a critical role in ensuring you live a happier, healthier life. We know you’ll experience a wonderful difference with Best Austin Dentist Dr. Bell and his Westlake Hills dental practice. From ages 12 to 105 years old, we will work together to prevent, predict, and preempt disease. And we’ll help you achieve your healthiest self at every age with a great smile to boot!

7
May

Austin Dentist Dr. Bell Pioneers CO2 Laser for Faster Healing Time and Less Pain

It’s no secret that West Lake Hills dentist Dr. Bell and his team are known for their use of the latest state-of-the-art technology to provide complete and accurate diagnoses of dental conditions, as well as patient comfort and safety, but many Austinites don’t know exactly what Dr. Bell’s arsenal of high-technology dental tools includes or the various benefits they bring to patients.

DEKA CO2 laser Dr. Bell's office Austin

One of the many technologically advanced dentistry tools Dr. Bell has in his Austin office is the DEKA COlaser that makes it possible in many cases to perform dental implants without the use of a scalpel, which is the typical procedure. The COlaser by DEKA is the same laser dermatologists use, but the it has been specially modified for soft tissue in the mouth. In dentistry, the use of the laser allows very small incisions with minimal trauma, no bleeding, and shorter procedure time. Patients report much greater comfort levels as well as faster healing with the use of the laser.

The COlaser can also be used for biopsies, with benefits to the patient including no sutures or post-surgery antibiotics needed, faster healing time and no scarring.

“The COlaser is an amazing technological advancement for performing dental surgery and dental implants. The COlaser decontaminates the surgical area and creates an optimal environment for healing. This provides a great advantage to our patients,” says Dr. Bell.

In addition, there are no restrictions for the COlaser in cases of conditions including pregnancy, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, transplants, pacemakers, or any cardiovascular disease.

One of Dr. Bell’s patients, David Schuette, can testify to the dramatic difference between getting dental implants the old way and having the implants with the CO2 laser.

Dr. Bell’s patient David says: “I had the first implant one week with regular incisions, and a second implant two weeks later with the laser. The first implant was more painful, the area was swollen for several days, and in general had a bigger impact on my body.”

“The laser surgery is literally light years ahead. It took less time, there was no bleeding, and recovery time was much shorter,” says David.

According to DEKA, the manufacturer of the $57,000 laser, the COlaser is the best choice for performing dental surgery on soft tissue. The laser energy makes it possible to cut and vaporize the soft tissues without any bleeding, rendering it extremely valid for surgery in highly vascularized areas, such as the oral mucosa, palate, and tongue.

With the development of microprocessors, the energy pulse of the CO2 lasers can be “super pulsed,” which gives the tissue recovery time to dissipate the laser energy. This allows a major improvement in working speed and efficiency on soft tissue, with minimal thermal damage to the treated tissues.

 

 

The result? Faster healing and more comfortable outcomes. Learn more about Dr. Bell’s other state-of-the-art dental technological devises, visit https://mbelldds.com/about-us/dental-technology/.

23
Dec

Why Brush Your Teeth When You Get Sick

Getting sick does not mean taking a vacation from caring for your teeth. It may be more difficult, but it is an important part of getting better. You need to keep the germs in your mouth down, so it does not cause you to relapse and get sick all over again.

Plus, if you have been vomiting, you need to clean the acids out of your mouth as soon as possible. Here are a few things that can help keep your mouth clean and healthy when you get sick.

Keeping Your Mouth and Body Healthier When You Get Sick

Brushing should go from two times a day up to three, as you are lying there trying to feel better, but moving, speaking, and eating far less than usual in most cases. This allows the bacteria to quickly multiply, so getting them out of your mouth quickly is essential.

If you have been vomiting, rinse with water right after, then after about 30 minutes, brush your teeth. This keeps the bacteria levels down, and lessens the chances of you getting sick all over again, or getting worse while already fighting this off.

Mouthwash is good to use at least 2-3 times per day when you are sick. It helps to rid your mouth of extra bacteria and any food particles you may have missed the last time you brushed. It can be used after brushing, or between brushing.

Make sure, if you get sick that as soon as you start to feel even slightly better, you replace your toothbrush. You do not want to put that dirty toothbrush back into your mouth with those bacteria and germs on it. It is nearly a guarantee that you will get sick again if you do.

If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment, please call us today.