Caring for Cosmetic Veneers

by Dr. Follette

Here in Santa Monica, cosmetic veneers are a great way to correct an imperfect smile, and while these permanently bonded porcelain shells can look and behave like gorgeous and authentic teeth, they will last longer if they are properly maintained. Dr. Carole E. Follette is a dentist who does great work with veneers, but she and her team would like to offer up this quick guide for how best to take care of veneers after they’ve been applied.


Five Tips for Caring for Veneers


#1 Brush and Floss


It may sound overly simplistic, but the simplest way to take care of your dental veneers is to treat them the same way you would your real teeth. This means brushing, flossing, and rinsing twice per day.


When it comes to veneers, we recommend using a non-abrasive toothbrush (manual and electric are both fine) to brush plaque and tartar from your teeth. Flossing helps remove stuck bits of food, too, while rinsing with an antiseptic mouthwash can help, as well. Avoid alcohol-based mouthwashes, however, as alcohol can soften the bonding agents keeping your veneers in place.


#2 Avoid Teeth Grinding


Just like teeth grinding can damage real teeth, it can do the same with dental veneers or any other sort of false tooth. Not only is it bad for your teeth, but it’s also bad for your jaw. While jaw health has little to do with caring for veneers, pain in your jaw could be an indicator that you’re grinding your teeth without realizing it. If this is the case, set up an appointment with Dr. Follette to come up with solutions to avoid grinding down your veneers.


#3 Don’t Chew on Hard Items


If you have a nasty habit of chewing on hard, non-food items like pens or fingernails, we’d recommend stopping those behaviors once you’ve got your dental veneers, as they could potentially damage them. Chewing on ice and hard candies can be problematic, as well.


#4 Avoid Foods that Stain


Drinks like coffee and wine, and foods like berries and soy sauce can stain your real teeth just as well as they can stain your veneers. While it’s not reasonable to expect dental patients to stop consuming these products entirely, we can suggest perhaps cutting down on them. Smoking, too, can stain veneers.


#5 Don’t Skip Dental Visits


Even when a patient is doing everything correctly, it can be impossible to clean teeth and cosmetic veneers, as well as a professional dental hygienist, can. That’s why it’s still imperative to have your biannual cleanings done, even after having your veneers done. Here in Santa Monica, cosmetic veneer dental work starts and ends in the dentist’s office!


Dental Veneers are Dr. Carole E. Follette’s Office


If you are interested in cosmetic veneers or already have veneers and would like to set up your biannual cleaning to help maintain them, simply call our offices to set up an appointment at your earliest convenience. These do give customers a brand-new smile, but that smile will last a whole lot longer if those veneers are treated with care.



We all want the best for our children, which explains why we work so hard to be sure they’re in good schools, or why we spend so many weeknights and weekends driving them to various sports practices and dance recitals, and chess tournaments. However, knowing how important healthy dental habits also are, parents should be devoting plenty of energy to ensuring their children develop healthy brushing and flossing habits, as well as everything else they do for their kids.

As your Santa Monica family dentist, Dr. Carol E. Follette has a few suggestions for how best to go about doing this.

Six Tips for Establishing Good Dental Habits in Children

1. Start as Infants

If brushing is something a child has always done, they will have no choice but for it to feel like a routine. Babies can develop tooth decay if their teeth aren’t brushed properly, so make sure you’re getting them used to the feeling of a toothbrush in their mouth, even when they’re infants.

2. Teach Proper Technique

There is, of course, a correct way to brush a child’s teeth, and most small children aren’t going to understand this without a great deal of help. Starting at age two or three, parents can begin showing their children how to brush with the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to the gums while moving the brush back and forth in short, tooth-wide strokes. Show them how to get every surface, even if they’re bad at it, and don’t forget the gums and tongue!

3. Don’t Stop Helping Too Early

By the age of four or five, many children will seem to have the hang of it, but the recommendation is to continue helping children brush until they are six or seven years old to make sure they’re not missing anything. They often do miss spots, so don’t abandon helping too early.

4. Make it Routine

Children should be brushing twice a day, so try to set times with them when it becomes routine. We suggest doing this after breakfast before heading to school, and then again at night before bed. This gets them in the habit of knowing when to brush.

5. Limit Sugar Consumption

Kids love sugar, but sugar does not love teeth. That means it’s the parents’ jobs to limit how much sugar their kids are taking in. Giving them a healthy diet is beneficial for many reasons, but starting them early on not craving sugar will have positive long-term impacts on the health of their teeth.

6. Normalize Routine Dental Appointments

Make sure that you get your child in to see Dr. Follette, your Santa Monica mercury-free dentist, the recommended two times per year. The earlier in their lives they go, the more normal it will feel to visit the dentist. This limits their anxiety about the experience and also makes sure they get the twice-annual professional cleanings they need to maintain proper dental health.

If you’re able to manage each of these things, you’ll raise a child that not only values dental health but also understands how to maintain that dental health on their own once they're old enough to do so. We all want the best for our children, after all, and dental health is certainly an important part of that.




Everybody has at some point been forced into closed conversation with someone whose breath wasn’t quite as rosy as we would’ve liked, and if you can think back to the discomfort you felt while smelling someone else’s bad breath, you may wonder whether you are creating that same discomfort in other people.

Nobody wants to deal with bad breath, but if you’ve been struggling with this issue and have been searching for a solution, Santa Monica non-surgical periodontal dentistry here at the offices of Dr. Carol E. Follette could be what you’ve long needed.

What Causes Bad Breath?

There are many factors that can cause bad breath, but some of the most common of these include:

  • Bad general oral health
  • Eating certain foods (garlic, onions, etc.)
  • Drinking coffee or alcohol
  • High-sugar diets
  • High-protein/low-carb diets
  • Smoking
  • Digestive problems
  • Dry mouth
  • Certain prescription medications

Negative Effects of Bad Breath

First and foremost, having bad breath can make it difficult for people to want to operate in close contact with you, both personally and professionally. It can be hurtful to watch people you love and respect create distance between you and them or cover their noses when they’re close enough to smell your breath.

Beyond that, however, is that bad breath is often a symptom of some underlying health issue. From dry mouth (xerostomia) to yeast infections to respiratory infections, bad breath can be a sign of some other problem that’s going on.

From the perspective of your Santa Monica dental office, bad breath is most associated with gum (periodontal) disease. Left untreated, gum disease can lead to tooth loss, gum damage, and even jawbone damage.

How Dentistry Can Help Bad Breath

Since bad breath is so often tied to gum disease and poor oral health, often the best way to start eliminating bad breath is to correct those two issues. Dr. Follette can help this in a few specific ways, including:

Laser Periodontics

If the issue is related to gum disease, Dr. Follette offers innovative, non-surgical solutions to periodontal disease like laser treatment. Using state-of-the-art equipment, our laser team can eliminate harmful bacteria while also strengthening and regenerating gum tissue. It’s a perfectly comfortable procedure and requires very little recovery time.

Mouth Rinses and Toothpaste

If the bad breath is due to bacteria buildup, Dr. Follette may recommend a special toothpaste or mouthwash that would help kill bacteria and reduce plaque buildup.

Fault Tooth Restoration Replacement

Sometimes, bad breath can be caused by faulty tooth restorations, which frankly can be a breeding ground for bacteria. By re-doing the bad restoration, we can close gaps and give customers an easy way to eliminate the bacteria causing the bad breath.

Eliminating Your Bad Breath With Dr. Carole E. Follette

If you are struggling with bad breath and are ready to start exploring solutions, please contact the offices of Dr. Carole E. Follette soon so she and her team can help you have fresher, cleaner breath. Not only will people want to spend more time with you, but you’ll lower the potential for other health issues down the road. There is nothing but benefits ahead for those that seek them.