Garden Grove Dental Arts : Marianna Ibrahim DDS


What to do About Sensitivity to Pressure

Teeth can become sensitive for a number of reasons, and for dental patients of all ages – that sensitivity can become problematic. More often than not, you’ll find you notice dental sensitivity when eating particularly hot or cold food and drink. This can happen for a number of reasons.

Many times, sensitivity occurs when your gums recede away from your teeth enough to expose their nerve endings and trigger sensitivity. Other times, sensitivity can arise from enamel that’s worn away from your teeth – or fillings that are either gone, cracked, or completely broken.

Our dentists in Garden Grove frequently help patients deal with dental sensitivity problems to help our patients get the healthy and comfortable teeth they’re used to. When teeth are sensitive to pressure, there can be a few additional underlying causes.

When pressure is present, your dentist might look for a few additional symptoms – such as highly acidic foods or tooth-grinding (or clenching) while you sleep. But what if your dental sensitivity has developed suddenly. In this case, it could point towards the presence of a tooth that’s become cracked or broken – or an underlying dental abscess.

For some patients, a trigger for this kind of pressure sensitivity can come about from the acidity in alcohol. To help curtail this, you can always try some fluoridated toothpaste. Fluoride helps re-mineralize the surface layer of the teeth to help protect your teeth from this and other kinds of sensitivity.

Are you experiencing dental sensitivity? Our dentists near fountain valley and Garden Grove are experts at diagnosing and doing everything  in our power to make sure your teeth are healthy and happy. That includes sensitivity. To learn more – contact our friendly and professional dental team today.



“I’m too nervous to go under anesthesia for my wisdom teeth, what can I do?”

Getting your wisdom teeth removed can seem like a right of passage for people of all ages across the country (and around the world). And it’s not just teenagers and young adults – plenty of “grown ups” have to deal with their wisdom teeth at some point (later) in their life as well.

No matter how old you are, though – it’s not uncommon to be a bit worried about “going under”. So, what do you do if the prospect of sedation is one you’re not too excited about?

Fortunately, there are options. While some patients might suffer from conditions like sleep apnea – which can make them nervous, others simply get creeped out by the feeling of being essential, unconscious. Fortunately, for every patient there are very few patients who medically can’t benefit from anesthesia.

For other patients, you might not even need to go “under” for your treatment by relying on local anesthesia instead. On top of that, especially if you think it will help you relax (tip: it definitely will), you can also opt to include nitrous oxide – otherwise known as “laughing gas”(but it doesn’t really make you “laugh”). So if you’re concerned, this is definitely one option.

If you’re only getting 1 or 2 wisdom teeth removed – or if your dentist has indicated that your wisdom tooth removal should be simple and routine – local anesthesia and gas might be a great option. But if your teeth are impacted or you’re getting more than a couple removed – IV sedation is usually recommended. The simple fact is, wisdom tooth extraction with IV sedation is generally smoother and simpler than extractions with just local anesthesia.

Have questions about your wisdom tooth extraction? If you’re a patient looking for smooth and comfortable wisdom tooth extraction in Garden Grove – our dentists are here to help.



Have Teeth That Are Otherwise Healthy? Then This is Your Path to *Perfect* Teeth

So, if you’re like a lot of our patients – your teeth are in pretty good shape.  You’re not coming to our Garden Grove dental office and learning about lingering cavities on every single check-up. You have a good oral hygiene routine. We never have to lecture you about taking better care of your teeth, or not to use your teeth as bottle openers.

Bottom line: you’re good to your teeth, and they’ve treated you well in return. They are healthy and this is the most important thing to remember. Healthy teeth are perfect teeth. But the simple fact of life is that perfectly healthy doesn’t always mean perfect for every patient. Slight imperfections, like discoloration, gaps, and even some crookedness can easily change the level of confidence a patient has in their smile – even if they’re teeth are perfectly healthy. We say – confidence is key, and for this reason, cosmetic dentistry exists. But for you, the solution you might be after could be dental veneers.

“So, what do dental veneers do?”

Technically, dental veneers are a shell that’s custom designed to completely cover the front surface of your teeth. On top of that, they’re thin, tough, and custom colored to blend right in with your natural teeth.

The great thing about veneers is that they can cover up a wide variety of minor imperfections to perfect your teeth. From tooth decay and stains, and even gaps, or teeth that are slightly misaligned or crooked.

It is important to remember, however, that dental veneers are aren’t something you can change your mind about. When veneers are installed, a small bit of enamel is removed to allow them to adhere to the surface of your teeth. Without the veneers, your teeth would be susceptible to decay and damage (but with them they are perfectly protected and perfect all-around).

Are you hoping for more perfect teeth? Our dentists in Garden Grove can help! Dental veneers might even be the option for you. Have questions? Talk to our friendly teem today.


So, Do You Really Need Braces?

Whether you’re someone who didn’t get braces when you were younger or you’re a parent considering braces for a child – the thought’s probably crossed your mind: “Are they even necessary?”

Our dentists in Garden Grove aim to be the trusted resource all of our patients need when they have questions about their dental health. With that in mind, whether you’re a dental patient near Garden Grove or you live thousands of miles away – the first and most important step is to find a family dentist that you trust. Because the best judge of whether you or your children need braces is always your family dentist.

If you haven’t seen the dentist yet or are simply doing some research before going (especially for your children) – here are a few signs to be aware of that indicate it might be time to start considering braces, or at the very least – an appointment with our orthodontist here in Garden Grove (if you’re local).

  • Baby teeth that fall out early or irregularly
  • Trouble breathing through their mouth
  • A history or finger or thumb-sucking
  • Crowded or misplaced teeth
  • A shifting jaw that clicks or makes sounds
  • Teeth that meet incorrectly or not at all

Medically Necessary or Cosmetically Necessary?

The thing about your teeth is this – just because you or your child may have a small amount of misalignment or malocclusion doesn’t mean your teeth are unhealthy, or that braces are medically required. However, in these cases some patients might want braces for cosmetic reasons (or their parents will know they’ll want them in the future).

Do braces “work” for adults?

Sometimes, patients in our Garden Grove dental practice wonder if braces work as well on adults. What they’re often surprised to learn is that almost 1/5th of the braces patients in North America are adults. The fact is: if your teeth are healthy, it’s actually never too late to consider getting braces.

Have questions about braces? We have answers! If you’re less than happy with your smile or you think your children might need braces and you live in the Garden Grove area – we can help. 



What to Expect After Your Dental Implant Surgery

Yesterday, we covered what you can expect in terms of pain whether you’re researching, considering, or expecting a dental implant to replace a lost, dead, or severely damaged tooth.

But while many patients tend to focus on the pain they might face during the actual procedure, many times they forget to consider what they might need to expect from the recovery period. So today, we’ll discuss what you can expect after  you’ve gotten a dental implant – apart from being able to expect a brand new tooth that looks (and feels) great.

If you don’t remember from our last post on the topic, the actual process of “installing” your dental implants should be nearly painless due to the use of advanced, modern anesthesia.  So, what happens after?


In the first moments after getting your dental implant, there’s a good chance our dentists (if you’re in Garden Grove) will encourage you to gently bite down on gauze packs in the areas the surgery’s affected. After an hour or two – these will be removed. But if there’s still some blood, replace just enough gauze to add a bit of pressure for another half hour or so.

Pro tip: Wet the gauze a bit before you use it, this will make it easier to position comfortably

For the first day, really try hard not to disturb the affected area. Don’t touch it, don’t poke it, and don’t rinse too hard. You can still brush your teeth, but do it gently and avoid the area where you just had surgery. If you’re a smoker, it will take longer for your teeth to heal – which can make it more uncomfortable than for a nonsmoker. If possible, do everything you can not to smoke during the recovery process.

After you get home, and as you recover – you should keep activities relatively low. Anything like bending too much or over-exerting yourself can result in increased pain, bleeding and swelling. If you’re an avid gym-rat, do try to wait 3-4 days or even a week until after your surgery to return to the gym.

While it’s not totally uncommon to “ooze” a little blood for a couple days after the procedure, this shouldn’t persist – and what’s really coming out is primarily your saliva.

Over the course of the next few days you might experience a little bit of pain. This should be helped greatly by over-the-counter painkillers. When it comes to your diet, avoid extremes (hot foods, overly cold foods, chewy foods) and try to keep your diet soft.

As you continue to heal you’ll want to rinse your mouth with a solution of 1/3 tsp salt in 8 ounces of warm water. Rinse with this, and carefully continue your regular oral hygiene routine. It might not be possible to brush as thoroughly as you did before surgery, but even still – it’s very important to ensure that your teeth stay clean, especially close to the surgery site.

Your Question Answered: “Does Dental Implant Surgery Hurt? (And What About After the Procedure?)”


If there’s one thing that encourages patients to ask our dentists in Garden Grove questions about a procedure or treatment – it’s pain. Of course, it’s only natural for patients to anticipate what something is about to feel like. And on that topic, we say this: Not only has dental technology and anesthesia come a very long way, but sedation dentistry has become increasingly popular. In this day and age, pain and dentistry are two things that simply don’t need to co-exist anymore.

Which brings us to a specific question that gets asked for time to time – and that is: “Does dental implant surgery hurt?”.

But before we get to our answer, we’ll clear up just what dental implants are. When you’re missing a tooth, you have a few options available to close the gap. Sometimes, a dental bridge can work well and last for many years. But lately, an even stronger alternative has emerged in the form of dental implants. These little wonders rely on titanium posts that are biocompatible. This means they eventually fuse with your jawbone, replacing your original tooth’s root and setting the foundation for a replacement tooth that’s just as strong as a natural tooth and 100% realistic. Unlike a dental bridge, the dental implant looks, feels, and functions just like a normal tooth. So many patients (and dentists) have developed a preference for them over the years.

But the answer to your question might surprise you…

Because they sure do hurt. They say beauty comes at a high cost, and they’re right.  Many have even said that the dental implant procedure is comparable to passing a kidney stone, or giving birth!

…….Said no dentist ever. 

The truth about pain and dental implants is simple. Like we mentioned before, modern dental technology – from the tools we use to the anesthesia we employ make even the most serious procedures virtually painless. There can be a small amount of discomfort involved in the recovery process – but this doesn’t generally last very long.

After the procedure, you might experience some discomfort in areas around your face, chin, and jaw. You might also feel some pressure underneath your eyes. The good thing, however – is that all of this discomfort is very manageable with over-the-counter painkillers, an ice pack to reduce swelling, and a freezer full of delicious ice-cream.

The pay off is simple: a replacement tooth that works perfectly, looks great, and lasts long enough to pass down to your grandchildren.




Some of Your Best Options for Cosmetic Dentistry


When it comes to our bodies, it’s not uncommon for even the slightest “imperfection” to command our attention and steal our self-confidence. From interestingly placed freckles to curiously canted just a little too much – sometimes we wish we could just fix those little imperfections.

Fortunately, in many cases our cosmetic dentists in Garden Grove have the opportunity to do just that. If you’ve ever felt self-conscious about your smile, you might wonder if there’s anything you can do. So today, we’ll discuss some of the options available when you’re considering cosmetic dentistry.

Inlays/Onlays: Inlays are also often referred to as indirect fillings and are generally made from a durable composite material or from porcelain. While many dentists still use amalgam fillings (and they can still provide a cost efficient option), inlays present a great solution for giving you an incredible smile even if you do have cavities. With an inlay, every filling will look just like the rest of your teeth for a nearly invisible dental restoration.

Dental veneersdental veneers are a special bit of dental technology that our dentists in Garden Grove love for their ability to completely restore smiles ailing from a wide variety of problems. Dental veneers are porcelain or composite “covers” for the front of your teeth to repair cracks, chips, and even gaps.

Whitening: Dental whitening is great because it’s simple, fast, and effective.  That’s what makes it one of the most common cosmetic dentistry procedures available for dental patients around the world. If you regularly smoke or drink (that includes coffee, red wine, and tea), or you just don’t take very good care of your teeth – teeth whitening might be a great option. Even for patients with sensitive teeth, whitening can improve their appearance by multiple shades.  So if your teeth are healthy but you feel like your smile could use a boost – whitening can be a great help!

Is Not Brushing Your Teeth Before Bed Gross?

the-best-toothpaste-for-youShort answer: Yes.

If there’s something that our dentists try our hardest to impart upon patients of all ages it’s this: a daily oral hygiene routine is important. But the most important part is the bit about it being a routine.

For some people, that means brushing every night before bed. For others, not so much. Sometimes, we hear from patients who only sometimes brush before bed. Whether it’s just not a part of their nightly routine or they were too tired to get up and brush – it can feel like anything from a forbidden luxury to a full-blown habit.

Unfortunately – not only will not brushing at night make your teeth and breath a little grosser, it can also contribute to cavities and an increased risk for periodontal problems. The thing is, your mouth is the ideal location for bacteria to grow and thrive. When it comes to decay and cavities, an acidic environment is required. As you eat throughout the day – that precise environment is created.

The best way to prevent the bacteria in your mouth from establishing a permanent home and contributing to cavities and decay is to brush them. By brushing (at the very least) in the morning and before bed, you’re creating two valuable opportunities to break up plaque and bacteria and prevent your mouth from becoming too welcoming for cavities.

So, if you’re one of those patients who doesn’t tend to brush their teeth at night and you really want to stick with the (terrible) habit – you might be wondering, “what’s the worst that can happen?” And in this case, it’s not ideal.

For your teeth, not brushing at night can easily lead to a higher rate of decay and cavities, which inevitably leads to dental work and replaced teeth. But it’s not just your teeth you should be considered about. Like always, our dentists in Garden Grove are also careful to remind patients how important it is to also take care of your gums.

If you don’t brush at night, while your teeth are getting assaulted by more bacteria – your gums will also be having a hard time too. Too much bacteria can lead to gum disease, which can get worse and worse – ultimately affecting your overall health.

Need help with your teeth? If your oral hygiene routine’s been lacking or you’re simply looking for a new dentist near Fountain Valley or Garden Grove – our dentists are here to help!

Contact us today to learn about being a new patient with Primary Dental Care of Garden Grove!







What to do about food stuck in teeth for extended period?


So, a popcorn kernel got stuck between your teeth or lodged in your gums. It isn’t what you’d hoped for when you dug into that bowl of popcorn, it sure isn’t comfortable, and it might seem like a pretty simple and innocent situation – but it’s actually one you need to deal with for a couple different reasons.

If you have a corn husk – or any piece of food – stuck between your teeth, you’ll want to get it out safely within a reasonable time-frame.  As the food breaks down, you’re not the only one feeding on it – the bacteria in your mouth does too. That includes the bacteria that causes dental decay and cavities.

When the food gets stuck under your gums – the situation is a little different. Not only is it a problem for your gums, but it’s a problem for your teeth too. In addition to contributing to decay and cavities – a piece of food or debris (tssk tssk nailbiters) can also cause inflammation in your gums.  Unfortunately, when your gums are inflamed – it’s also often the first step on the road to other, more serious gum problems.

So no matter what – you understand it’s important to get a stuck piece of food or debris out of your teeth or gums. But you should also understand that you need to do it safely. And if you can’t do it safely, then the best option is just to wait.

So, how should you get that stuck piece of food out? You should start with floss. Rinsing or flossing should always be your first step. Always be very careful about tooth picks. If flossing doesn’t seem to work – gently running a toothpick around your gumline can sometimes do the trick.

In the rare case that you can’t get the stuck food or debris out, the next thought in your mind might be: “I may need to find a dentist near me” now. And you would be right. It’s not a terrible emergency, but if you’ve been dealing with something stuck for an extended period of time – your dentist has the skill, equipment, and expertise to get it out and assess whether there’s an infection or not.


What does a Toothache Mean?

Answering questions is perhaps one of the most important functions your dentist has. Our dentists in Garden Grove take this very seriously. For any patient, communication is key – and when it comes to your teeth, communicating a toothache is especially key.

Some of the most common questions in the dental world revolve around toothaches. What do they mean? and does it always mean you have a cavity? Today, we’ll do our best to answer those questions so we can help you make sure your toothaches are few and far between while avoiding the need for a root canal dentist.

Sharp tooth pain that comes and goes, especially when you eat: If your tooth pain is sharp and painful, especially when you eat – there’s a good chance you could be dealing with some decay – or even a fracture.

Pain that comes in goes when exposed to hot or cold food and beverages: this sort of pain is often a signal that your gums are experiencing some recession – opening you up to a higher degree of sensitivity. Many times, this can be handled by simply using a different toothbrush and a gentler brushing technique. Other times, it could be a sign that you have a small dental cavity. Conventional wisdom applies here, if the pain is something new and notable – get in touch with your nearby dentist to make sure it isn’t a more serious problem. Because the longer you put it off, the more serious it will become.

A persistent toothache: otherwise known as a “chronic” toothache, this is the type of constant pain you really have a hard time ignoring. Unfortunately, it almost always means severe tooth decay, dental trauma, or a long history of grinding. In some cases, this might require you to see one of our root canal dentists in Garden Grove – other times, it might simply mean you need to change the way you take care of your teeth.

Experiencing a toothache? The longer you wait, the worse it will be! Treat it the easy way by treating it sooner. If you’re a patient in the Garden Grove or Fountain Valley area – we can help!