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Dr. Mark Costes
Dr. Sean Reed

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Archive for December 2015

Save your teeth during the holidays

Holiday Dental Care

Save Your Teeth This Season!

The holidays are a-coming. Say hello again to the busiest, most hectic, sometimes most frantic time of the year—and according to dentists, also the most perilous time for your dental health.

How do the holidays affect your teeth?

The schedule. Amidst the back-to-back parties, the endless shopping, the visits to the relatives and the season’s traffic, meticulously brushing and flossing your teeth may just be the last thing on your mind.

The festive feasts. Many of the food items and dishes traditionally served during the holidays can be damaging to your teeth, if you’re not careful about what you eat and don’t practice vigilant dental care.  

All that running around. For many people, the holiday break is an opportunity to go on a vacation such as an out-of-town trip. This puts their routine out of whack, and often shoves dental hygiene to the backseat.

As a result, poor dental health behaviors abound during the season. Toothaches, chipped teeth and other dental emergencies are often on the rise during the months of November and December. What makes the situation more complicated is that many dentists often close up shop to commemorate special occasions during these months, making it difficult to look for immediate treatment and relief from pain.

To address this issue, the American Dental Association launched their dental health holiday campaign which aims to educate people on proper dental care around the holidays. With the use of informational videos, coloring sheets, hygiene charts and other educational materials, dentists and dental care professionals and advocates help keep people’s smiles healthy not just during the season but throughout the year.

So don’t let a toothache ruin your holiday cheer. Remember the following tips as you celebrate during this special season:

Commit to your routine

Stick to your dental care routine no matter how busy you’ll get. If you’re traveling, keep your dental hygiene kit handy. If you can’t help but eat that piece of peppermint candy, be ready to brush with fluoride toothpaste and floss thoroughly right after.  

Pay your dentist a visit

This is a must, especially for those who will be going away for a vacation. Have your teeth checked up and cleaned, and undergo the necessary treatments before the holiday rush and before you leave for someplace nice (which may not have proper dental health facilities). Consider it your gift to yourself.

Watch what you drink

Some of the best-loved party beverages can be damaging to the teeth, such as soda, punch, sugary drinks and red wine. Use a straw to minimize contact with your teeth if you can’t decline the drinks. And drink plenty of water round-the-clock.

Watch what you eat

You don’t have to deprive yourself of the yummy grub that’s readily available this season. The key is to eat less of the bad things and more of the good treats so you don’t miss out—and at the same time, so you won’t be at risk of tooth decay. For instance, reach for the turkey, veggies and cheese instead of the puddings and sugar-packed desserts.  

Wear protective gear if necessary

Winter games can be rowdy. If you’re planning to ski, or do a round of ice hockey, wear teeth guards and other gear to shield your mouth and teeth from injury. We hope you don’t need any dental care during this busy time of year, but if you do, be sure to contact Dr. Costes and Dr. Reed for all of your emergency dental care needs. 

Confident About Your Smile?-Ways to Replace Missing Teeth

Missing Teeth

Missing Teeth

New Ways to Replace Missing Teeth

After you lose your set of baby teeth and your permanent teeth appear, you can no longer expect to grow another new set once these fall out due to disease or accidents. In an ideal world, your permanent teeth should be the last set of teeth that you will ever have. However, the reality is that people do lose their teeth.

Fortunately, with the aid of a dentist, you can replace your teeth and restore your smile and confidence. Listed here are the new ways to replace missing teeth that dentists currently use.


If you need to replace a few or all of your missing teeth, one of the first options your dentist may recommend for you are dentures. One of the chief advantages of dentures is that they look and function like real teeth. Additionally, they are removable. This means that you can give your gums respite at the end of the day.

Over the past few years, dentists have introduced a few upgrades to dentures. For one, the fitting process has become considerably shorter. What took about five or more dental appointments in earlier times has now been reduced to fewer visits.

Dentures also provide solid returns on your investment. If you take good care of your dentures, they can last a lifetime. Should you lose another tooth, your current set of dentures can be refit to accommodate this change in your mouth


Dental Bridges

Bridges connect two land masses separated by a body of water. A dental bridge functions in about the same way: connect two teeth by filling in the gap left by missing teeth by joining two crowns.

It should be noted that if you have otherwise healthy teeth, dental bridges may not be the best option for you. Dentists often let healthy teeth be. Furthermore, dental bridges have their limitations and cannot be used for gaps left by six or more missing teeth.


Dental Implants

Dental implants utilize a titanium screw affixed to the jaw bone which will serve as a foundation for artificial teeth structures like dentures, bridges and crowns.

Dental experts highly recommend implants because they mimic the look and function of natural teeth. However, not everyone is deemed to be a suitable candidate for dental implants. Before dental implants are recommended to a patient, the dentist needs to ascertain whether he has ample bone mass to hold the implant. Furthermore, the patient’s medical history needs to be accounted for.


What the future has in store for the Dental Industry:

One dental treatment that is in current development and shows great promise is stem cell therapy. Currently, experts have managed to regrow entire tooth roots and have even successfully used these in pigs.

In the future, it is predicted that it would be possible for a patient to have his baby teeth stored, regrown and implanted once the patient loses a permanent tooth.Dr Reed and Dr. Costes are wise enough to know that in order to maintain a thriving Prescott Valley Dental Office they need to stay on top of the latest in dental technology. Rest assured, when you make an appointment with our Chino Valley Office or Our Prescott Valley office, we will take good care of you.




Top 5 Tips on Teeth Whitening

Teeth Whitening

Discover Top 5 Tips on Teeth Whitening with Horizon DDS.


Your pearly whites have an effect on your appearance as well as self-confidence. When you have whiter teeth, you smile more often. When you smile more often, people naturally feel more comfortable around you. Anyone who has that happy expression will always look attractive, too. Of course, whiter teeth are also associated with healthier teeth.


Clearly, you’re doing your teeth a world of good when you try teeth whitening methods. But which one should you do? How do you maintain results longer? And what limitations should you know about?


Here are our top 5 tips on teeth whitening to help you sort out the answers.


  1. Consider in-office teeth whitening.

You can get teeth whitening products over the counter. Take them home and basically do the teeth whitening process on your own. While this might sound like the more affordable way to go, it might not always deliver the “snowy” white results you want. Most at-home teeth whitening kits could also take longer to work. You’re not likely to get instant results. Moreover, a higher concentration of bleach on some products could lead to post-op sensitivity.


In-office teeth whitening provides you with several options, from professional whitening to power bleaching to chairside whitening. With a dentist doing the treatment, it is also the safest way to whiten your teeth.


  1. Take a “before” photo.

Your dentist might do a “before” photo because this helps to keep track of the results from the procedure. You will know right away if you have moved a shade or two since your procedure.


  1. If it’s dark, don’t put it in your mouth.

Maintain the results from your teeth whitening procedure by going on a white teeth diet. That means nothing dark to eat or to drink. You’ll want to stay away from curries, red sauces on pasta, chocolate, beets, berries, red wine, colas, black tea, and anything that will stain your teeth.


But don’t panic when you do consume such foods; rinse with water immediately, and eat an apple to naturally clean your teeth.


  1. Don’t go to extremes with teeth whitening.

You can overdo it by over-bleaching, with multiple whitening products. When you over-bleach with whitening strips and toothpaste, you’re harming your teeth. And your dentist may deem you an unsuitable candidate for teeth whitening.


  1. Think about other whitening options.

Finally, your dentist can still recommend other options if a teeth whitening treatment isn’t for you. Veneers or bridges can fix dental issues, like malalignment, which can make your teeth appear darker. So don’t lose hope when your teeth are sensitive because with today’s modern treatments, the right dentist will always find a solution for you.



3 Warning Signs You May Need Dental Care

top three signs you need a dental visit

Do You Need Dental Care?

You might find yourself thinking that the worst of your dental problems take place while you’re still young. It’s not difficult to see why this would be a common belief, since a lot of the procedures designed to correct problems with the teeth and gums (and prevent them from reoccurring later in life) such as braces and teeth extractions are often performed during adolescence and up to early adulthood. If you continue to take proper care of your oral health after getting work done on them, you may just avoid serious dental issues in the future.

However, even as you aim to be mindful of your teeth and gums’ health as you grow older, they will still be subject to wear and tear, and the natural aging process that your body goes through will inevitably have an effect on their condition. If you want to keep your teeth and gums in the best possible shape through the years then you need to look out for the three specific warning signs you may need dental care provided below.

The sign: Teeth and gums that are sensitive and painful

You might not notice any symptoms at first, but that doesn’t mean that you don’t have dental problems at hand. Your gums may actually be eroded, causing your teeth to become sensitive. This condition is caused by the buildup of bacteria at the base of the teeth. You’ll know that your gums have been affected by periodontal disease when you find bleeding while brushing, or gum tissue that has become loosened thanks to microbes causing the bone and ligaments holding teeth in place to deteriorate.

The solution: You can avoid this situation by making flossing part of your regular routine and choosing toothbrushes that either have soft and rounded bristles or are the rotation oscillation electric kind. If the disease is already present, you can use antibacterial rinses every day, and visit the dentist more often for professional deep cleaning procedures.

The sign: A dry mouth

When people get older (especially 25% of women when they reach their 50s), the mouth may not produce as much saliva as needed to maintain the antibacterial environment necessary to keep it healthy. Saliva is also essential in providing minerals (that strengthen the enamel in teeth) and neutralizing acids.

The solution: Regularly cleaning your tongue can help resolve minor cases of mouth dryness and bad breath. Popping sugar-free hard candies or gum with xylitol in your mouth can also stimulate saliva production. For more serious cases, it’s best to consult your doctor so that the exact cause of the dryness can be pinpointed.

The sign: An unmistakable twinge or pain

Receding gum lines are prime spots for bacterial proliferation—and consequently, decay, which can worsen because of its close proximity to the teeth’s nerves. Fillings, as well as unfilled teeth in older individuals, can also get cracked and become breeding grounds for the bacteria. That’s where that twinge comes from.

The solution: Regular brushing, flossing, and rinsing with fluoride solutions (not alcohol-based ones) can prevent those cracks. Existing cracks, however, will need to be located using x-rays; these will be filled or smoothed (if they’re relatively small) or provided with a cap or crown (if they’re bigger).

If you live in Chino Valley, AZ or Prescott Valley, AZ and are experiencing tooth pain or any of the symptoms listed above, Dr. Costes or Dr. Reed can help. We are happy to help to get your mouth back to health.


Dentures – Which are right for you?

Dentures in Chino Valley AZ

Full or Partial Dentures – Which is Right for You?

If you’ve lost some of your permanent teeth, the “quickest” solution (and the cheapest, too) to restore your smile would be dentures. You get two options: full and partial.

So, are full or partial dentures right for you? Are they the best solution to your unique case of missing teeth?

Full dentures are ideal for people who have already lost a complete set of teeth. Meanwhile, partial dentures are ideally used if you’ve only lost a few and you still have several natural teeth in the upper and lower jaw.

Cost of Dentures

In answering this question, perhaps your main consideration is your budget, because while there are other dental solutions available, they are definitely more expensive than dentures. But if money’s no issue, determining whether or not you should opt for dentures will depend mainly on the brand of convenience you want, the look and feel you prefer, the condition of your gums, and your overall physical health. Making this careful decision with the support of your dentist is advised.

Oral Care for Dentures

When it comes to convenience, dentures require a big change in your oral care routine. Since these are removable and come with artificial gums, you can’t brush the conventional way; you would have to remove your false teeth to thoroughly clean them as well as make sure that there are no food particles (that can cause bad breath) stuck in the artificial gums. You will need to remove and soak them overnight as well to properly sanitize them and avoid the risk of swallowing and choking on them.

It’s also worth noting that there are certain foods you may need to avoid because dentures will not stay put if you eat them; some examples of such foods that denture users should avoid are jerky and other tough meats, chewable candy, toffee, and gum.

As for their look and feel, dentures definitely take some getting used to because they’re removable. They’ll never feel truly part of you because of this. If that’s fine with you, then restore your smile with dentures, but if you prefer the experience of real teeth, explore permanent options.

Now, if your job requires you to talk often and you constantly worry that your dentures will loosen and drop while you’re talking and cause you great embarrassment, perhaps a permanent solution in the form of dental implants will be more suitable for you. It’s important to mention, too, that if your gums have receded greatly, dentures will no longer work for you, as there’ll be nothing for them to securely attach to. Even adhesives won’t keep them in place if the base—your gums—has become thin and worn down.

Lastly, if you have a disease like diabetes, you automatically would not be a good candidate for dental implants because severe complications may occur. Dentures are more likely to be recommended by dentists to avoid the serious health risks that a complex procedure like implants may present.

To learn more about Dentures and your options with them, contact our Chino Valley or Prescott valley Office for a consultation.



Sedation Dentistry – Safe Dental Sedation for Patients


sedation dentistry

Safe Dental Sedation Used for Patients at Horizon Family Dental in Prescott Valley and Chino Valley Offices

Dental treatments and practices have evolved significantly in the last century including sedation for major dental procedures. Lost teeth can now be restored, disfigured teeth are made perfect, dental phobias are addressed, and many more changes that elevated the industry have transpired. One of the most important discoveries is sedation dentistry, because no matter how safe and minimally painful most dental treatments are, a lot of people still dread undergoing sessions on the dental chair.

Prescott Valley Dentists, Dr Reed and Dr. Costes offer sedation dentistry and say that this provision is most effective in outworking the anxiety a lot of people feel (link to anxiety blog) whenever they need to undergo a dental procedure. What happens is that they use medication to help patients relax or become completely unconscious during treatments. When patients are completely relaxed and numbed, they do not feel the discomforts of having various procedures such as scaling, extraction, incisions and the like performed in their mouths.

There are different kinds of sedatives used for safe dental sedation and they vary in the level of sedation they subject patients to. PV Dentist, Dr Reed listed them below and explain their effects.

Nitrous oxide or laughing gas

This is administered through a gas mask placed over the nose and it’s combined with oxygen. It offers minimal sedation but works really well in relaxing patients. The effects of this inhaled sedative wear off rather quickly so patients who need to drive themselves home don’t have to worry about feeling groggy after their dental treatment. Patients remain awake but completely relaxed with this sedative.


This comes from the same drug family as Valium, which many know is used by those with insomnia and depression. This is taken orally and an hour prior to the dental procedure. It makes patients feel drowsy, and a higher dosage can put them to sleep. This offers mild to moderate sedation, meaning that while patients may fall asleep, it’s not going to be too deep a slumber that it’ll be difficult to wake them up. Alternatively, patients remain awake but are not completely aware of the ongoing procedure.

General Anesthesia

It is the most powerful sedative used for sedation dentistry because patients fall into a deep sleep during the procedure. It is administered via IV and it will render anyone unconscious immediately. This is ideal for people with severe anxiety over dental procedures; however, all patients that are sedated using general anesthesia should be driven home by a friend or family member after treatment because the sedative effects last much longer. Most of the time, special medication needs to be administered to reverse the effects, but even with this, patients can remain somewhat out of it or groggy for some time.

Learn more about sedation dentistry or schedule an appointment with us today!

Dental Implants – Everything You Need to Know

Dental Implants – Everything You Need to KnowGot punched in the mouth when you were younger and lost your two front teeth? Were you neglectful of oral hygiene before and had to have rotted teeth extracted? Or have you been cursed with bad genetics that have impacted your dental health? You are not alone. You’re probably resorted to lamenting your lost teeth; as a temporary solution to your missing teeth. Fortunately, however, there are various dental solutions available to correct those problems permanently, and among them are dental implants.

The dental implant solution will make it seem like you never lost a tooth in the first place because the artificial tooth is placed in your jaw to hold a replacement tooth or bridge is a permanent “installation”. With dental implants, the replacement tooth or teeth will feel like your own natural teeth and you can treat them as you would your natural teeth, too, as they’re not removable like dentures are. You can bite into an apple, chew gum, and never worry about them falling out.

There are two types of dental implants and they are dependent on the amount of jawbone patients have that dentists can work with.


The first is Endosteal or in the bone implant; it is the most commonly used type that surgically places screws, cylinders or blades into the jawbone.


The second type is Subperiosteal or on the bone implant, which is placed on top of the jaw and is the one recommended for patients who cannot wear conventional dentures due to minimal bone height. This implant’s metal framework’s posts protrude through the gums to hold the prosthesis.

Please don’t be alarmed at the graphic detail we are offering here. These dental implant procedures are routine in our office and are accompanied by safe sedation. The outcome is very much worth the temporary discomfort.

Are dental implants a viable solution for you?

To be a candidate for this treatment, you need to have:

– Good oral health

– Adequate jawbone to support the implant

– Healthy gums

– Good overall physical health (you don’t have heart conditions or diabetes that may either get aggravated by the procedure or prevent you from healing properly)

What is a dental implant procedure really like?

The type of implant suitable for you will first be determined, and then a periodontist will design a treatment plan specifically to meet your needs in preparation for the actual procedure. Once you’re in the best state of health, you will get the clearance for the procedure.

If you are missing a single tooth, one implant and a crown can replace it. If you’re missing two or several teeth, implant-supported bridges will be used. If you no longer have teeth, an implant-supported full bridge or full denture can replace them.

Prior to those, however, the jawbone will have to be properly prepared because it’s the foundation of the procedure. If your upper back jaw has insufficient bone quantity and quality, sinus augmentation has to be carried out because of the bone’s close proximity to the sinus. This procedure will raise the sinus floor and develop bone for the proper placement of the implants.

Another thing that may be carried out for dental implants is ridge modification. This procedure will correct deformities in the upper or lower jaw. To correct the deformities, the gum is lifted away from the ridge to reveal the bony defects. The deformity will be filled with bone or a substitute to create a proper ridge.

Post-procedure care and responsibilities

Due to the complexity of the procedure, you will be required to take adequate care. A special oral care program will be created for you and you need to uphold this to ensure proper healing. You will likewise need to pay your periodontist and dentist regular visits in order to prevent complications.