If you suffer from an overwhelming fear of dentists and dental procedures, you know how easy it is to miss regular appointments. Dental anxiety is a very common problem and affects millions of patients. Unfortunately postponing dental treatment almost always results in the need for invasive and costly treatment in the future.

Obviously, your comfort and well-being are of great importance to the Santa Monica, CA family dentist. Our goal is to support your oral health by providing painless and efficient treatments. We use state-of-the-art technology and minimally invasive procedures that reduce your time in the chair and increase your discomfort.

But these factors alone may not give you the peace of mind you’re looking for when visiting your dentist. So what can you do to help alleviate this anxiety? Feeling a loss of being in control contributes to dental phobia. Here are three practical tips to help you feel more in control during your dental appointments and hopefully reduce your stress level.

1.Communicate with your dentist– You may find it embarrassing to talk about your fear, but your dentist needs to be aware of your anxiety to take the necessary precautions during treatment.

2.Agree on a signal – Patients are often afraid that their dentist won’t know when and if they are experiencing pain or anxiety, and this contributes to their fear. Agree to a signal with your dentist beforehand. A simple “stop” hand signal can be used to alert your dentist to your discomfort immediately.

3.Ask about sedation– Sedation offers an excellent solution for many patients who would not otherwise be able to endure the treatment. Discuss the different types of sedation options available with your dentist before the appointment, so you know what to expect beforehand.

The best way to combat dental phobia, however, is to gather information beforehand. Your Santa Monica, CA family dentist is always available for a consultation to discuss procedures and treatments to help you understand what your appointment will involve.

Please call our office to learn more anxiety-reducing tips!


We all have good intentions when we make our New Year's resolutions, but carrying through with them is another matter entirely. But in some cases, as in your oral health, turning over a new leaf has enormous benefits, and it’s these resolutions you want to try hard to keep.

The Santa Monica family dentist wants you to enjoy the healthiest possible smile, so we are sharing a few resolutions you can make that benefit your oral health.

Schedule a Dental Appointment: If you haven’t seen a dentist in a while, don’t feel like you’re alone! The American Dental Association (ADA) says that about a third of people in the US don’t keep routine appointments.

So even if your teeth look and feel okay, set a reminder on your phone or calendar for January 2 and make your appointment.Most dentists send out reminder cards a week prior or call a day before your appointment; check that yours does.

Commit to Flossing: Brushing your teeth twice a day isn't enough to keep plaque from building up on your teeth, or to completely remove bits of food from your mouth. To take the best care of your teeth, you need to floss too. If you're not in the habit of flossing, the new year is a great time to start.

If your flossing skills have gotten rusty, ask your hygienist to show you the proper steps so you can be sure you are getting the most out of your efforts.

Reduce Your Sugar Intake: Everyone knows that sugar is bad for your teeth, and cutting back can significantly reduce your risk of tooth decay. You should reduce the number of sugary treats you buy, and make simple swaps like drink sugar-free seltzer water instead of soda, or chew a piece of sugar-free gum if you have a sweet craving.

Choose Mouth-Healthy Foods: Resolve to add foods to your diet that support good oral health. Dairy products, which are high in calcium, are great for your teeth, as are fibrous foods that can stimulate saliva flow and scrub away plaque and other food bits.

We applaud your efforts for a healthier smile and will support you in every way possible. If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to call the Santa Monica family dentist to arrange an appointment!


Here at Carol E. Follette's Dental Practice in Santa Monica, we offer a wide range of dental solutions that can help your smile shine even brighter. If there's something about your teeth that you don't like, we have the expertise and training needed to make sure that you get the smile that you deserve.

One way we can do that is through dental bonding. This simple process is quick and effective. You're even closer than you think to getting your perfect smile.

What Is Dental Bonding?

Dental bonding treatment is used to improve the appearance of the teeth. We can change the structure of a problem tooth, one with cracks or other imperfections, by using dental resin. We use a customized solution every time to make sure that this process helps that tooth blend in perfectly with the rest of your teeth. No one will know you've had this procedure done unless you tell them!

The dental bonding process can help you fix cracked teeth, make a short tooth longer, or lighten a stained tooth. If there's some way you want to make your smile brighter and more even, dental bonding can help. This procedure is a popular cosmetic dentistry solution for a few reasons.

It's quick and non-invasive, which means that dental bonding isn't going to cause your anxiety or waste too much of your time. It also can be more affordable than some other treatments. Each resin is also customizable, so we can make your teeth match perfectly. Another advantage is that dental bonding is easy to repair. If any of your teeth get damaged, we can fix it for you and get your smile back into top shape once again.

How Long Does Dental Bonding Last?

We know that our patients want their dental treatments to last a long time once they've gone to the trouble of getting them. Fortunately, dental bonding can be a solid medium- to long-term solution as long as you take care of your teeth well. There are a few things you should know if you want to get the most out of this treatment.

First, there are two types of bonds that we can use during this process. The composite resin bond is the first option. This is suitable for most of our patients and should last for at least 10 years with proper care. This procedure can also use a porcelain veneer, which is a more expensive option. These can last longer though. In some cases, a dental bonding process that uses porcelain veneers can last for decades.

To get the most out of dental bonding, you'll need to care for your teeth properly. That means proper brushing and avoiding foods that can potentially damage your teeth. Do you have a habit of chewing on ice cubes after you finish a drink or chowing down on hard pretzels while you watch television? You'll have to break those habits so that you don't crack your teeth again. You'll also want to avoid food or beverages that can stain your teeth, including coffee or tea. If you follow these tips, your dental bonding can give you a beautiful smile for years and years.