Smile Story: Kristy

meSpring is officially here in Maine! The flowers are in bloom, plants and trees are looking green and happy, and we can’t help but enjoy every last minute outside.

This week, we spent time with Kristy, A Perfect Smile’s Patient Coordinator, to learn more about her love of nature and her plans to hike a different mountain each week this season.

Hi Kristy, can you tell us a bit about yourself: who you are, where you’re from, and what you do?

I was born and raised in southern Maine. Here at A Perfect Smile, I am training to become the new treatment coordinator. In my personal life, I love hiking, reading, and spending time with my fiancé and our families.

When did you first become interested in wellness? 

My interest in wellness began in at young age; I decided to pursue a bachelor’s degree in psychology because I wanted to help people. My junior and senior years of high school I was dually enrolled in YCCC, I completed my bachelors at the age of 20, with a goal of helping others be healthy and happy.

Who are your biggest professional/life inspirations?

I take a lot of my daily life inspirations from my favorite modern poet Mary Oliver, who said “tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and crazy life?” I strive to live my life to fullest, love grandly, and help others always professionally and personally.

What are your favorite spots in your neighborhood (Falmouth or around town)?

My fiancé and I love going to the old port, we love the old buildings and are getting married at Bully Feeney’s next spring. We also love to hike the trails in Yarmouth, on Cousins Island, and Little John Island. We plan to hike a different mountain every weekend this summer.

What music do you currently have on rotation at home or while you work? 

Music is a big part of my life, lately I am listening to a lot of 90s Hip-Hop, but I will always be a punk girl at heart.

Kristy is part of our front office team at A Perfect Smile and specializes in helping patients understand their treatment options and make the most of their dental insurance benefits. Contact us today or call 207-781-2448 to reserve an appointment. 

Smile Story: Rhonda

rhondaRhonda is the newest member of our front office team at A Perfect Smile. We caught up with her today to chat about her favorite Maine things and her long time love for all things dentistry.

Hey Rhonda, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your background?

I am a single mom of two with my last one “spreading his wings” to go to college in Colorado. My daughter is a Heroin Analyst for the State of Maine and graduated from StoneHill College.  I am a very proud momma. I am from DownEast Maine where the “real” blueberries are.

I first became interested in a career in dentistry at a very young age (lots of cavities due to my love of CANDY!).  I lived across the street from my dentist and often stayed to help hand out appointment cards with the ladies.  Hence I believe my love for people and dentistry!

How did you get linked up with the team at A Perfect Smile?

I had taken a break in my career as a practice manager to spend a year with my kids as they were getting older and time was flying by.  I was doing some consulting on the side with offices and enjoying my kiddos.  I started looking for a position and applied to A Perfect Smile.  All it took was a nice conversation with Dr. Nelson and I knew that his vision for patient care and creating a wonderful dental experience was an exact fit!

What are some of your favorite discoveries about dentistry or healthy living tips?

Dentistry goes so far and above just our teeth. Our whole bodies are effected by the condition of our gums, bone, teeth etc.  I was diagnosed with trigeminal neuralgia (a chronic pain impacting the trigeminal nerve) years ago and became very knowledgeable about what our old mercury fillings do to our bodies and the importance of oral hygiene. One of the things I have come to love is my smoothies with all natural fresh fruits, chia seeds and psyllium husk – not only yummy but your body just absorbs all that goodness!

Tell us about your life when you aren’t at A Perfect Smile – what are some your favorite things to do?

I love reading, gardening, walking on our beautiful beaches and spending time with my friends and family.

What’s next for you this year? Any special events coming up that you are excited about?

My big event this year is that I will have an empty nest.  Learning new hobbies and learning more about a happy, healthy life!  I believe that YOLO – you only live once.  My bucket list this year is sky diving – gulp!

Rhonda is part of our front office team at A Perfect Smile and specializes in helping patients understand their treatment options and make the most of their dental insurance benefits. Contact us today or call 207-781-2448 to reserve an appointment. 

Smile Story: Lisa

unnamedWe spoke with Lisa, one of our Certified Dental Assistants about her daily dental care routine, springtime in Maine, and her tips for keeping your smile healthy.

Hi Lisa, Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? 

I’ve worked with Dr. Nelson for more than a decade and have helped hundreds of patients design the smile of their dreams. I live in Windham, Maine with my family and spend as much time as I can with my two growing children.

When I’m not routing for my kids on the athletic field, I love to be outside as much as possible. My favorite hobbies are walking, gardening swimming & relaxing by the pool.

How did you choose a career as a dental assistant?

I first became aware of careers in the dental field from talking with a friend’s mom who was a dental assistant. She had always complimented my smile and my attitude and then one day, she suggested that I explore a career in the field. I started working with her at her office while studying at the Dental Careers Institute. Right away, I loved the fast paced environment of the dental practice. Working with new dental technology, talking with patients, and spending my time helping people seemed to come naturally to me. After graduating from DCI, I continued my studies and became a Certified Dental Assistant. I still love what I do today and am forever grateful to my friend’s mom for introducing me to dental assisting.

What is your daily dental care routine? 

Morning: brush, rinse mouthwash

Afternoon:  brush , rinse with oxyfresh (I’m hooked on that stuff! Ask for a sample at your next visit)

Evening:  brush w/ Clinpro toothpaste (it has extra flouride), floss, and I wear my dental nightguard faithfully every night

What do you like most about living in Maine?

What’s not to love about living in Maine? I absolutely love having four seasons. The ever changing landscape gives us so much to do year round without having to travel far.

What do you like to do in the springtime? 

I love the anticipation of spring – when I hear the sound of the peepers, I know its really here. I love maple syrup Sunday, it’s a Maine tradition. One year, my friends and I visited three different Maple sap houses in one afternoon! Delicious!

What do you think is the most important thing to remember about dental care in general? 

For most people, the most important thing is keeping a regular schedule of preventative hygiene appointments, and practicing good home care. I used to love going to the dentist as a child and I believe starting kids early is the key to lifelong healthy smiles!

What’s coming up for you this year that you are excited about? 

I’m getting very excited about the upcoming high school baseball season. My son, Tanner, plays for Windham High School. I’m also planning to sign up for some 5k’s this year. Last year, I participated in the Color Run and it was such a blast. I’m hoping it comes back and I can do it again!

Lisa has worked with Dr. Nelson to help hundreds of patients with restorative dentistry and smile design at A Perfect Smile. Contact us today or call 207-781-2448 to reserve an appointment. 

Smile Story: Chelsea

chels APSChelsea is carving her own path and sharing her passion for dental hygiene education at A Perfect Smile and as a teacher at the University of New England. Read on to find out how she’s made a career out of following her passions:

Hi Chelsea, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your background? 

I have a large family and grew up in a small town in Vermont. I grew up without electricity, by choice, so most of my childhood I spent playing basketball and other sports outside all year round. To say that I thought Portland was a big city when I first moved to Maine is an understatement. Portland has so much to offer! I have since bought my first home in Windham and am loving living in Maine.

What is most important to you in 2017?

I’m striving to be as healthy and happy as possible.

Can you tell us about your experience as a dental hygienist? How did you become interested in the field? 

I became interested in dental hygiene in high school when I had the opportunity to do a co-op work experience in a dental office as a dental assistant. I was trained on the job and thus prepared myself for hygiene school. I went to the University of New England for an Associates and Bachelor’s degree. I then moved on to obtain my Master’s degree from the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut.

I have been practicing dental hygiene for over 7 years and have my local anesthesia license. There is nothing I enjoy more than dental hygiene. I just started teaching at the University of New England last year and thoroughly enjoy that in addition to working clinical hygiene here at A Perfect Smile.

What’s your favorite thing about living in Maine?

I love the ocean, growing up in Vermont we always used to vacation to Maine, so it’s wonderful to truly live in “Vacationland”.

What are some other things you are currently interested in?

I love to stay active and play on many local sports teams in the community, including basketball and kickball. I recently bought a house, and love interior decorating and DIY projects.  I also love to sing and dance, but most of all, laugh and goof around with my friends and family.

What’s coming up for you this year that you are excited about?

My big sister is getting married this year and I have had a lot of fun planning and celebrating the multiple wedding events. I cannot wait for the ceremony in April!

Chelsea is now accepting new professional hygiene patients at A Perfect Smile. Contact us today or call 207-781-2448 to reserve an appointment. 

A Perfect Smile Happenings: Maine Yoga Festival 2016

Last week, we proudly sponsored the Maine Yoga Festival and hosted healthy living events and classes at our festival booth all weekend.

We made “happiness plants” to brighten our work spaces, we flossed our tissues, muscles, and gums, and Dr. Nelson taught a special Happiness yoga class for everyone in the community.

We had so much fun and met so many new friends from around Portland. We can’t wait until the next event.

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Staff Picks

The staff at A Perfect Smile in Portland, Maine recommend their picks for oral health products.  Check them out!

Lisa – “My favorite Dental Product is Johnson and Johnson Reach Dentotape waxed floss.”

Michelle R– “Philips Sonicare FlexCare & Rechargeable Toothbrush with UV Brush Head Sanitizer kills up to 99% of bacteria and viruses, keeping your toothbrush clean.”

Rebekah– “I like the convenience and great dental benefits of Rotapoints.”

Amy- “Oral B-Triumph Electronic Toothbrush, Reach Access Flosser for those hard to reach areas-such as ones wisdom teeth.”

Becky– ”The in office Zoom! teeth whitening. I am still amazed with the results!”

Amanda – “My must have dental product would have to be Johnson and Johnson woven floss with fluoride. I always keep extra on hand because when I run out I refuse to use anything else.

This floss feels like I am removing more bacteria and plaque, doesn’t shred, and gets fluoride on the in betweens. I love it!”

Heidi– “My favorite dental product is Colgate’s Total toothpaste- it’s only toothpaste on the market to have Triclosan which helps patients with gingivitis.”

Ellen – “I like Listerine Zero. No alcohol with full antibacterial benefits!”

What’s your “must have” dental product? Please share with us in the comments!

5 Reasons the Oral B Professional Care 5000 should be your Tooth Brush!

Guest Post by A Perfect Smile Patient, Michael Papi

After a recent cleaning at A Perfect Smile my hygienist recommended to me the Oral-B Professional Care SmartSeries 5000!  It sounds like a lot but if you like the feeling of having your teeth cleaned professionally this is definitely as close as you can get!   Today’s blog post will be a  review of the Oral-B Professional Care SmartSeries 5000 as well as the top 5 reasons why you should own one as well!

The Oral-B Professional Care SmartSeries 5000 comes equipped with all of the bells and whistles you will need to keep your pearly whites clean all year long.  It has a “state of the art ergonomic design”, multiple brush heads (Oral-B FlossAction and Oral-B Pro White,) portable charger, travel toothbrush case, charging station, SmartGuide, and rechargeable battery are all apart of the package making it easy to travel with.

Don’t let the instructional DVD and 10 page manual for this toothbrush intimidate you.  Total this toothbrush brand new out of the box takes less then two or three minutes to set up.  Once the batter is charged its time to give it a try.  A wireless SmartGuide helps to maximize your brushing performance by displaying a timer and a guide to help you brush the different quadrants of your mouth effectively; its recommended you spend 30 seconds on each quadrant for a total of 2 minutes of brushing.  Every 30 seconds you will feel a pulse indicating that you are supposed to change quadrants.  The power of this toothbrush is so amazing that there is no way plaque will remain on your teeth once you have finished brushing.  With over 40,000 pulsations and 8,800 oscillations per minute you will feel like you just stepped out of the dentist’s office every time you brush your teeth!

I promised you 5 reason to use this toothbrush and here they are!

1.) Removes up to 99.7 of plaque from those hard to reach areas of your teeth (even deep between your teeth!)

2.) 5 different brushing modes: daily clean, sensitive, whitening, massage and deep clean

3.) Portable Charger and Plastic Travel Case.

4.) 40,000 pulsations and 8,800 oscillations per minute.  Thats a lot of power!

5.) The clean feeling you get after using the Oral-b Professional Care SmartSeries 5000 feels like you just had a professional cleaning.

I love my new tooth brush and encourage you to give it a try!

– Michael Papi

What toothbrush do you use? Tell us in the comments!

Sensitive Teeth

Sensitive teeth can affect you if you have gum recession or exposed dentin on your teeth. You may notice a tingle when you drink something cold or when you brush your teeth. You may also experience sensitivity if you have tooth enamel loss, plaque, dry mouth syndrome, or gum disease. Cracked or chipped teeth, tooth decay and root nerve damage are other reasons for tooth sensitivity. Tooth whitening may also cause temporary sensitivity. The good news is that there are tasks you can perform to reduce sensitive teeth.

Tips for Sensitive Teeth

  • The Right Toothbrush and Toothpaste: You’ll likely to be able to reduce tooth sensitivity by using a soft toothbrush and desensitizing toothpaste.
  • Consider Fluoride: You’ll probably benefit from a fluoride mouthwash, gel or varnish which help to remineralize and strengthen the teeth. There are also prescription strength fluoride toothpastes.
  • See Your Dentist: Sensitive teeth may be a sign of tooth decay. So, it’s important to see your dentist about tooth sensitivity. Dentists also have in-office desensitizers and sealers that can be painted or sprayed on the teeth, offering an advanced method for managing sensitive teeth. Dentists can also perform bonding to protect tooth surfaces from sensitivity. You may also request prescription strength fluoride toothpaste. Regular professional hygiene appointments are highly advantageous for people with sensitive teeth.

If you would like to learn more about sensitive teeth, call Dr. Robert Nelson, a Portland, Maine cosmetic dentist at 207-781-2448