How long does it take to obtain porcelain veneers?

Happy young couple enjoying a solitary beach backriding Everyone wants to enjoy the benefits that come with a beautiful smile. However, if your smile is imperfect, you may find yourself feeling much more self-conscious about the way you look when socializing with others. At the practice of Dr. Baban Mahal, we are committed to ensuring you have access to cosmetic dentistry procedures that help you improve the appearance of your smile–including porcelain veneers.

Understanding how porcelain veneers work

Dr. Baban Mahal describes porcelain veneers as facings that are bonded over the front of a tooth to cover one or more imperfections. This may include permanent staining, chips and cracks, or even gaps between the front teeth. They work because they cover the problem while matching the rest of the smile thanks to customization. They are typically chosen over other options, including composite resin bonding, orthodontic work, and porcelain crowns. Your dentist can help you decide if veneers are best for your unique needs.

How long does it take to obtain porcelain veneers?

There is a process required in order to obtain porcelain veneers that you will learn about when you start their journey. Dr. Baban Mahal and her team will first evaluate you to determine if you are a good fit for veneers before preparing the tooth. A very thin portion of enamel is removed and roughened to ensure the final veneer will bond to the tooth. An impression is made, creating a mold of the natural tooth to ensure proper fit. A ceramist fabricates the final veneer with the dentist’s information to create a restoration that best fits the size, shape, and color that you need. A temporary may be placed until your restoration is back at the dental office and ready for bonding. The entire process can take a week or two to complete–but you will enjoy your new restoration for many years with proper care.

Request your visit with Dr. Baban Mahal today

Granite Bay, FL patients considering enacting their smiles with porcelain veneers are welcome to connect with our team to learn more. Dr. Baban Mahal’s front office team can be reached by calling 916-800-5001 and booking an appointment at 6049 Douglas Boulevard, Suite 9.

Dentist exam of young teen girl teeth.

Five Tips to Improve Oral Health

Dentist exam of young teen girl teeth.

Oral health is essential to preventing dental problems. However, dental issues can also affect other parts of your body. For example, bacteria in the mouth may lead to respiratory and digestive diseases. The good news is that office visits can improve your health and well-being.

What Are Some Signs I Should Improve Oral Health?

  • You have red or swollen gums 
  • You have tender or bleeding gums 
  • You experience worsening breath
  • You have sensitive teeth
  • Your teeth are getting loose
  • You experience pain when chewing food
  • Your bite feels uneven 
  • Your gums are receding 

Five Ways To Improve Oral Health 

The foundation of excellent dental health is prevention. However, it’s not too late to incorporate healthier habits! Start smiling brighter today. 


Proper brushing is the first step to good oral health. The ADA recommends brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time. Also, ADA-accepted fluoride toothpaste can help fight cavities. Replacing your toothbrush every three months is a good rule of thumb, or sooner if the bristle is worn. 


Daily flossing is a necessary component of excellent hygiene while removing hard-to-reach plaque. Plaque hardens teeth over time and forms tartar. Only a professional can remove tartar once it develops.


Using mouthwash daily is another step to improving your smile. When searching for a good mouthwash, the ADA Seal of Acceptance is the gold standard for killing bacteria safely and effectively. 


A healthy, balanced diet can positively impact your teeth and gums. Limit sugary food items and drinks. Instead, say yes to fibrous fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and dairy products. Reducing snacking throughout the day can also help combat tooth decay. 


Last but not least, regular examinations and cleanings are a big piece of improving oral health. Maintaining teeth and gums can help prevent cavities and diseases. Routine x-rays are also suitable for preventing and diagnosing dental problems. 

Schedule Your Appointment Today!

Call us today at 916-800-5001 to schedule your appointment with Dr. Mahal. Our practice serves Granite Bay and the surrounding areas of California.

Know the Signs of Tooth Decay

Man in pain holding his cheek with hand, suffering from bad tooth ache Our best health is maintained when we take care of all parts of the body. This includes the smile. Having a healthy smile means you are more likely to love the appearance of this facial feature. It also means that there is less of a chance that you’ll experience dental pain of any kind. Oral health is also integral to general health because a healthy mouth has fewer harmful bacteria creating inflammation and infection in the mouth and beyond. You may take great care of your teeth via daily brushing and flossing. Still, you should know how to recognize the signs of tooth decay so, if you notice them, you can address the issue before a full-fledged cavity forms. We’ll discuss some of the most common signs here.

The signs that a cavity may be forming include:

  • Tooth sensitivity. If you can normally eat hot or cold foods with no discomfort and, suddenly, that ice cream or hot soup causes pain in a tooth, it could be that a cavity is developing.
  • Pressure. Sometimes, when a cavity is just forming, a tooth may not hurt but may feel pressure when biting or chewing.
  • Toothache. This is the symptom we usually associate with cavities. A toothache for a minor cavity may feel like throbbing or aching pain that lasts more than a couple of days.
  • Gum inflammation. Where there is a cavity forming, there are bacteria. Bacteria don’t stay put at all times, they may move from the decayed part of the tooth to the gum line. Here, their acidic byproducts cause redness, swelling, and maybe even some bleeding when you brush or floss your teeth.
  • Spotting or pitting. A brown or dark spot on a tooth may be one of the first indications of a worsening cavity. Where the spot is, eventually a pit will form as the tooth degrades bit-by-bit.

Treating Tooth Decay

Tooth decay is one of the most common problems treated in dental offices around the world. It is also one of the most preventable dental conditions. If you’re brushing and flossing daily and still struggling with cavities, talk to your dentist. Perhaps there are ways you can improve your oral hygiene practices to make them more efficient. Maybe you can benefit from more frequent professional cleanings or dental sealant treatment. If you are noticing even one of the signs of tooth decay that we’ve mentioned here, don’t hesitate to schedule a dental exam. The earlier that care is provided for a forming cavity, the more conservative it can be and the more tooth structure we can save.

We provide friendly, professional care that seeks to prevent tooth decay. When necessary, Dr. Mahal performs restorative treatment to address this issue as conservatively as possible. Contact our Granite Bay office at 916.800.5001 to schedule your visit today.

I Brush My Teeth Twice a Day and Still Have Cavities. Why?

woman brushing teeth with electric toothbrush We all know that healthy habits pay off in innumerable ways. When we eat well, we reduce our risks for various medical conditions, such as diabetes and high cholesterol. When we brush our teeth as we’re taught by our dentist, we expect to have less of a problem with cavities. This is the general expectation of dentists, hygienists, and their patients. So, when you brush twice a day and still feel a cavity coming on, what gives? We’ll discuss that here.

How Do Cavities Form?

Our teeth are made of various minerals. The mere act of eating can disrupt the mineral content of teeth to some degree. Usually, this is not enough to result in a cavity, provided that we are putting nutritious foods into our bodies. Ideally, the pH in the mouth stays relatively neutral. When the pH leans more to the acidic side, which happens after we eat, the natural mineral content of our teeth declines. Fortunately, it usually takes only about 30 to 60 minutes for the pH to return to its more neutral state. This is key to avoiding cavities. One of the reasons a cavity may form is that the mouth isn’t given sufficient time in between meals, drinks, and snacks to return to its normal pH. To allow the body to engage in its own cavity-preventing activities, it is beneficial to leave hours of space in between meals and snacks and to avoid prolonging these activities. For example, if you drink soda or juice, enjoy the beverage within a few minutes rather than over an hour’s time. Then, wait at least an hour before drinking or eating again (with the exception of water). To make matters worse, when we eat starchy foods and drink sugary drinks like soda and fruit juice, debris from these items may stay in the mouth. Bacteria that live in the mouth consume the sugars and starches and then produce acid that eats away at the outermost layer of enamel that covers teeth. To reduce this effect, sip water frequently throughout the day.

How Can You Help Re-mineralize Your Teeth?

The body naturally works against de-mineralization of the teeth by producing saliva! This fluid acts as a buffer that helps to flush out harmful particles and bacteria. Furthermore, saliva contains some of the minerals that are found in our teeth, such as calcium and phosphate. Often, though, this is not enough to counteract the loss of minerals that occurs due to the types of foods we eat or our genetic predisposition for tooth decay. This is why dentists recommend that their patients use fluoride toothpaste every day. Many cities’ public water supplies have added fluoride, as do the majority of bottled water products. The consumption and use of fluoride fortify the mineral content in saliva, which then helps to build decay-resistant enamel.

Is There a Best Time to Brush Your Teeth?

You’ve most likely heard from your dentist or hygienist that you should brush your teeth twice a day. Some people think that they should brush after every meal. This generally isn’t necessary and may actually be harmful. Dentists typically encourage patients to brush their teeth in the mornings after waking so that the bacteria and plaque that began to accumulate overnight can be washed away. Brushing first thing in the morning also introduces fluoride into the saliva before the first meal of the day, washing teeth in a layer of protective minerals before the acids from breakfast form in the mouth. If you prefer to brush after meals, it is important that you wait at least 30 minutes before doing so. Brushing too soon could remove beneficial minerals right along with the debris from your meal. As an alternative, rinse the mouth with water or chew some sugarless gum to help promote increased saliva. The second time that we should brush our teeth is at night right before bed. This is recommended because it cleanses the mouth before a prolonged period of acid exposure. So, while you can brush any time of day that suits your schedule, the ideal timing is right after waking up and right before going to bed for the night.

Are you struggling with cavities even though you brush twice a day? Contact our Granite Bay dental office at 916.800.5001 and schedule an appointment with Dr. Mahal. Together, you can develop an oral care program that meets your needs.

handsome young man in eyeglasses looking at camera and smiling

Love Your Smile a Little More

handsome young man in eyeglasses looking at camera and smiling A beautiful smile is something to behold. It is a feature about yourself to love. If your smile isn’t in its very best condition, guess what, it could use that much more TLC! Whatever your current dental situation, regular visits with your dentist are a must. Here in our Granite Bay general and cosmetic dentistry office, we help patients fall in love with their smiles all over again. Here, we discuss some of the ways that you can do the same.

An Ounce of Prevention

Hands down, loving your smile means taking excellent care of your teeth and gums. Doing so doesn’t take very long, only two minutes in the morning and about double that every night before bed. The thing is, it’s easy to get so busy in life that we forget the critical nature of oral care habits. All it takes is a lack of daily brushing and flossing for plaque and tartar to build up on teeth. When this happens, we’re looking at a future of decay and infection. Conversely, all it takes to prevent the pain and stress of cavities and gum disease are those daily habits. We might suggest:

  • Set daily reminders in the form of notes on the mirror or alarms on your phone to create a consistent oral care habit.
  • Set a timer for two minutes every time you brush, or brush as long as one of your favorite songs.
  • Use “flavored” dental floss to make the practice more enjoyable. This may help you stick with it.
  • Be mindful of your diet! Where possible, cut back on highly-processed, high-sugar foods and beverages.
  • Sip water throughout the day, especially after meals and other beverages.
  • See your dentist every six months.

Managing Dental Problems

The vast majority of people who see their dentist every six months and take good care of their teeth every day are able to avoid uncomfortable dental problems. We want this for all of our patients. However, in the unfortunate event that a tooth gets infected or the gums become inflamed, we’re here to help. Dr. Mahal also performs cosmetic services that can correct issues like discoloration, misalignment, and more.

Loving your smile looks different for you than it will for anyone else. We can provide the unique services that you need to love what you see in the mirror. To schedule a visit, contact us at 916.800.5001.

Simple Steps for Consistently Healthy Teeth

Beautiful parents and their daughter are looking at camera and smiling while brushing teeth Every time a new year rolls around, we sense the opportunity to become more of our best selves. Often, people have the goal of becoming healthier or losing weight. Very often, about 80% of the time, the New Year’s resolutions don’t live to see another month, let alone the entire year. According to research, the primary reason so many people “fail” to keep their resolutions is that they are too lofty. Another reason is that they simply feel too challenging. Here, we take the goal of improving oral health and we break it down into three easy steps.

Build Confidence with Cosmetic Dentistry

Our smile is a major part of our self-image. It is, to some degree, our calling card, exhibiting to people around us how we feel and how confident we are with ourselves. According to studies, though, a large portion of the population hides their smiles. We do so because of discoloration. Because a tooth or teeth are crooked. We hide because one tooth stands out from the rest in some way, or because we’ve lost a tooth. There are a myriad of reasons one might hide their smile, and one good reason to address the issue that is causing concern. Cosmetic dentistry treatments aren’t nearly as involved as most people think. Some of the ways that we help patients regain confidence and satisfaction with their teeth include:

  • Clear Correct teeth straightening
  • Teeth whitening
  • Veneers
  • Tooth-colored fillings
  • Orthodontic treatment

Correct Dental Problems with Restorative Dentistry

What we do and do not do on a daily basis is the foundation of our health and wellness. When it comes to our smiles, our habits can literally make or break us. Generally, people are pretty good about brushing their teeth before starting their day. Brushing before bed, however, might not be a priority. It may seem unnecessary or simply be forgotten even when intentions are good. At night, we should brush our teeth for two minutes and then spend another couple of minutes flossing. These two habits alone go a long way to prevent unnecessary inflammation and decay. Your smile is worth an extra five minutes a day. And should problems develop, we can correct them quickly with restorative treatments like tooth-colored fillings, crowns, and, in more severe cases, tooth replacement.

Maintain a Healthy Smile with Preventive Dentistry

If you’ve had a history of dental woes, it may not feel possible to avoid them in the future. The truth is, though, that the majority of our most common dental problems are preventable. Here, we look back at those daily habits and how we can improve them. Beyond that, it is necessary to maintain regular dental visits. These appointments involve a thorough examination of the teeth and gums. X-rays may be taken once or twice a year to observe areas that cannot be seen with the naked eye. Preventive dental visits also involve a comprehensive cleaning using vibrating, ultrasonic, or rotating instruments that quickly remove debris and plaque. The dentist or hygienist will also spend time carefully removing tartar that has hardened on teeth. The cleaning wraps up with flossing and recommendations for home care.

Get your new year off to a healthy start! Contact our Granite Bay dental center at 916.800.5001 to schedule your exam and cleaning, cosmetic service, or restorative care.

Should I Get a Bridge or a Dental Implant?

Portrait of serene mature woman in garden Tooth loss can significantly affect appearance as well as chewing function and, as a result, can degrade your sense of self-confidence. Historically, missing teeth have been replaced using a dental bridge. In more extreme cases of oral disease, a dentist may recommend full dentures. Today, we have the option of replacing missing teeth, even a single tooth, using dental implants. Technically, a dental implant functions very differently than a dental bridge. If you are exploring your options for tooth replacement, it is important to understand the difference so you can make the most confident decision for your long-term oral health.

What is a Dental Bridge?

A dental bridge is a custom-made fixture that is attached to healthy teeth surrounding the gap. In the gap, a pontic sits on top of the gums. The pontic is an artificial tooth that is fused in between two crowns. It looks and feels natural once it is bonded into place. To fit a dental bridge, the dentist must reduce the two healthy teeth that will anchor the fixture. These teeth are covered with the crowns that hold the pontic and stabilize the bridge as a whole. The primary advantage of a dental bridge is that this treatment has a lower up-front cost than other options. The treatment process typically takes no more than a few weeks, and there are no special requirements in terms of bone density. The disadvantage of a dental bridge is that the force of chewing is not as evenly distributed across the teeth. The two teeth that hold the bridge may carry more strain. It is also important to note that a dental bridge does not address the concerns related to underlying structural problems that can occur after tooth loss. Mainly, the concern is that, without roots beneath the gap, bone loss occurs.

What is a Dental Implant?

A dental implant is not a replacement tooth. It is a tiny titanium post that the dentist inserts into the jawbone where the missing tooth’s roots once were. The dental implant serves two purposes. First, it acts as the primary anchor for a replacement tooth. Second, it serves as an alternate root system. When you chew, the force of mastication travels through the crown, through the dental implant, to the bone. This mimics what happens with natural teeth, and is integral to sustaining a healthy jawbone. The primary advantage of dental implant treatment is that the resulting stability for the artificial tooth is nearly 100 percent. It not only looks natural but it feels natural and it also behaves like natural roots would to stimulate ongoing bone regeneration. While crowns and other restorations sometimes need to be replaced after 10 to 15 years, a dental implant is expected to last indefinitely because it gets encased in natural bone. The disadvantage of this treatment, if you could call it that, is that it takes time for the bone to grow around the implant. The final restoration is typically not affixed to the implant until full fusion has occurred, and that can take up to six months. However, due to this fusion, dental implants can be ideal for the replacement of multiple teeth. Dental bridges and dental implants can be used together in this situation.

Your tooth replacement options are better than they’ve ever been. To learn more, schedule a consultation during which you can sit down with Dr. Mahal and get all of your questions answered. Contact our Granite Bay, CA office at 916.800.5001.

Beat Bad Breath with These Tips

bad breath Back in the day, we used to have conversations with people at a relatively close distance. We’re getting back to that, now that we have vaccines and treatments for the COVID-19 virus. Whether you’re still wearing a mask or have a few people with whom you can safely shorten the distance during conversations, your breath may be a source of concern. We all experience bad breath from time to time, but persistent bad breath can be an embarrassing or frustrating problem. Here, we discuss why breath can take a nosedive and what you can do to prevent or correct it. 

The Role of Bacteria in Bad Breath

We don’t see them, but they’re there. The mouth is home to a multitude of microorganisms. The bacteria that live in the mouth consume our “leftovers,” tiny particles of debris from foods and drinks. What consumes must also secrete. In the case of oral bacteria, they secrete an acidic byproduct onto the teeth and gums, and sometimes onto the back of the tongue. You might recognize the accumulation of bacterial waste in the form of morning breath. A foul odor may also persist if bacteria are out of control.

If you’ve been living with bad breath, you don’t have to accept it as your norm. There are several preventive measures you can take.

  • Brush and floss daily. If you’re concerned about the odor on your breath, we assume you are brushing morning and night as your dentist recommends. Where a lot of people miss the mark is in their flossing practice. For some reason, flossing feels like a chore whereas brushing does not. Skipping this last step of daily oral care, though, lets bacteria hide in between teeth and at the gum line. Flossing not only helps fight bad breath but can also reduce your chances of getting gum disease and cavities. 
  • Keep mouthwash handy. You can’t be expected to brush your teeth every time you consume a snack or meal. This actually might be overkill, anyway. However, if bad breath sneaks up on you, having a small bottle of mouthwash handy can be helpful. Just swish and spit. 
  • Drink plenty of water. Hydration is key to oral health. Don’t guzzle water only at certain times of the day; sip on water several times an hour. This way, your mouth does not become a dry haven for bacteria. 

Your Dentist Can Help with Bad Breath

Regular dental checkups and cleanings are integral to optimal oral health, and oral health is essential for good breath. Dr. Mahal offers personalized dental care in a comfortable, friendly office. To schedule a visit, call 916.800.5001.

Teeth Whitening Can Help you Radiate Joy This Holiday Season

iStock 889681798 1 Your smile is a large part of the portrait of your personality. Studies have shown that we tend to assess other humans through their smiles. Teeth that are bright and shining, even if not perfectly straight, send a message of warmth, friendliness, and vitality. Whiter teeth also make the smile look younger. If you don’t see these things in your own smile, perhaps it’s time to gift yourself more brightness. As the holidays approach, we can’t think of a better time for professional teeth whitening

We enjoy helping patients fall in love with their smiles, whether for the first time or all over again. Professional teeth whitening is a convenient and effective way we can do this. Dr. Mahal offers treatments that can be enjoyed right here in the office or in the comfort of your home. Both are effective and both can transform your smile pretty quickly.  If you’re ready to live in your best smile, we’d love to meet with you. Together, we can discover if teeth whitening treatment is ideal for you.

How Teeth Whitening Works

To determine if teeth whitening is the best approach to a better smile, we have to look at what this treatment does. Both in-office and home whitening techniques utilize a bleaching agent to lift discoloration from enamel. The bleaching gel penetrates the uppermost layer of enamel, which has tiny pores just like the skin. This breaks up the tiny particles of debris that have collected in the outer layer of teeth. As the particles are broken up, the natural radiant shade of teeth shines through. Professional treatment can even go beyond the natural shade of white to give the smile a special glow without making it look artificial.

An experienced dentist knows to look beyond the surface. While teeth whitening is a proven and convenient method of reviving the smile, it may not be the best approach for every person. For example, if you have intrinsic stains that are beneath the surface of enamel (usually caused by tetracycline use), teeth whitening will not work. In these instances, Dr. Mahal may suggest veneers. Ultimately, the goal of cosmetic treatments is to improve the appearance of the smile in the most effective manner. When possible, teeth whitening is ideal. Not only does it achieve quick results, but it achieves results that are easy to maintain. With periodic touch-ups, our patients can maintain a radiant smile for decades.

Get your glowing smile. Contact our Granite Bay office at 916.800.5001.

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