Dr. Dean Salo

Do Vegans Get More Cavities?

A vegan diet is said to have numerous overall health benefits; however, it is essential for vegans to be mindful of how this lifestyle choice affects their oral health.

Through the elimination of specific food groups, vegans potentially risk missing out on key nutrients that are vital for good oral health.

Should Vegans be Concerned About Oral Health?

Many vegans are well-informed about maintaining healthy nutritious diets by consuming a variety of vegetables, fruits, legumes and grains to obtain the nutrients they need. However, studies show that an adult eating a vegan diet for a continued period of time can be at an elevated risk for gum disease due to lack of calcium and Vitamin D. The absence of these essential nutrients can lead to the softening of teeth to over time, making them more susceptible to tooth decay. The good news is that vitamin D gets naturally produced in the body with sun exposure, so deficiencies are rare. However, deficiencies in calcium tend to be more common but can be easily remedied with a balanced diet. Additionally, arginine, an amino acid commonly found in poultry, fish, and red meat break down dental plaque, helping keep cavities at bay. This, in turn, results in vegans to miss out on the dietary plaque prevention.

What Can Vegans Do to Improve Their Oral Health?

Studies have shown that healthy balanced diet consisting of a variety vegetables, grains, fruits, and legumes, will allow vegans to get all the necessary nutrients. Additionally, adding soy milk, nutritional yeast, extra servings of green leafy vegetables, and vegetable margarine to the diet will also lessen the risk of vitamin deficiencies. Taking a daily multivitamin is also a good practice to adopt. Lastly, another way to improve a vegan’s oral health is to use mouthwashes and kinds of toothpaste that are boosted with arginine.

About Dean Salo

Dr. Dean Salo is very experienced in the field of dentistry having over 25 years of experience in the profession. He specializes in everything from complex dental implants to simple dental checkups. He has a passion for dentistry and providing highly individualized care for all of his patients. For more information about Dr. Dean Salo, visit his website or his office at 6222 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 102 Los Angeles, CA 90048 (323.933.2400).


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How Does Smoking Effect Your Teeth?

We are all aware of the fact that smoking an unhealthy habit, but were you aware of the fact that is a major contributor to dental problems as well?

Effects on Teeth and Oral Cavities

http://www.deansalo.comTobacco use and smoking can cause bad breath, stained teeth, and a weakened sense of taste. Smoking can also hamper your immune system over time creating concerning side-effects like a reduced ability to recover from surgery. Smoking is additionally one of the most significant risk factors associated with gum disease, which causes inflammation around the tooth. This can cause irritation, discomfort and ultimately lead to tooth loss in its advanced stages. Smokeless tobacco is no better as it increases your risk of oral due to the abundance of blood vessels in your head and neck. Ultimately, the effects of smoking on teeth can lead to tooth decay, tooth discoloration, and gum recession.

http://www.deansalo.comSteps to Take

The first step to quitting smoking will be to set a date to finally quit. The next step is to have a strong support system that will support you in your journey. Friends, family, your doctor, and dentist are all valuable resources to help lean on. Thirdly, by practicing behavioral distractions such as chewing gum when the urge to smoke comes is an effective way to combat your need. The next step can involve using both prescription and over the counter medication to help you quit. It’s never too late, to quit being unhealthy! Get started on your quest towards whiter teeth and a healthier mouth.

About Dean Salo

Since launching our private practice in 1992, we have strived to provide our patients with excellent service and the utmost level of care. We specialize in a variety of different dental treatments ranging from simple dental checkups to more complex surgical procedures. To learn more about our practice, visit our website at www.deansalo.com or visit our office at 6222 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 102 Los Angeles, CA 90048 (323.933.2400).


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9 Common Causes of Toothaches

Do you ever find yourself wondering why you keep getting toothaches? There are a variety of factors that can affect the health and sensitivity of your teeth. This article you will help you better identify these root causes so that you can have greater insight into your health and seek the necessary treatments.

Rough brushingDean Salo

You should be changing your toothbrush every 3-4 months. Using old toothbrushes and brushing your teeth aggressively can result in greater tooth sensitivity.

Tooth Whitening

Using excessively harsh teeth whitening products or getting your teeth whitened too often can dramatically increase the sensitivity of your teeth. Be sure to use an experienced dentist to minimize any risk.

Chewing Ice

Chewing ice is usually just viewed as a bad habit, however, it can have some very negative consequences for your teeth. The continued grinding over time can result in cracked enamel, which leaves your teeth susceptible.

Cold Weather

When the weather gets colder and the cold air blows on your teeth, it can act as a trigger that has your experiencing greater levels of sensitivity.

Tooth Decay

When the germs and bacteria in your mouth are left to their own devices, they eat away at your teeth. If untreated, these cavities can be detrimental to your health. Getting mercury-free fillings are the best way to go to prevent further damage.


Stress has some people grinding down their teeth. This is called bruxism and can be very harmful as it tears down the structural integrity of the tooth, which can lead to headaches and toothaches.

Your Diet

Digesting hard or highly acidic foods can cause harm to your teeth. Juices, citrus fruits, sports drinks, and juices can all contribute to tooth discomfort and sensitivity.

Split Tooth

If you experience discomfort when having your teeth exposed to hot/cold or sensitivity when biting down, then you may have a split tooth. Bonding, crowns, or root canals in serious cases can fix the situation.

Eating Or Digestive Disorders

Patients with acid reflux or bulimia have the surfaces of their teeth worn away from the frequent vomiting and upheavals.

About Dean Salo

Having opened his practice over 25 years ago, Dr. Salo has been committed to providing highly individualized care for all of his patients. Whether you are in need of a simple dental checkup or more complex dental implants or surgery, Dean Salo offers all of his dental services in two convenient locations in Los Angeles and Torrance.


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Avon39 – The Walk To End Breast Cancer

The Avon 39 mile walk is an event that is very close to all of us at our practice. This year, our team of two walked 39 miles to raise funds in support of the fight against breast cancer.

dean salo

Two of my close friends and colleagues, Samantha Besser and Renata Kruk (pictured above), walked 39.3 miles in a span of 2 days in the Avon39 walk in Santa Barbara, California. They raised about $6,400 for breast cancer research and patient support. I’m so proud to have supported our team and such a great cause!

Avon is an amazing foundation that not only funds research of cancer treatment, but also helps to support those with or at risk of developing breast cancer. The Avon Cancer Crusade developed a community outreach program,Avon Breast Health Outreach Program, that educates communities throughout the United States about early detection of breast cancer.

The Santa Barbara walk alone raises millions of dollars each year. Since the year 2000, more than 44.8 million dollars have been donated to organizations in Southern California. Each participant of the Avon39 walk pledges to raise a minimum of $1,800. Teams consist of breast cancer survivors and supporters of the incredible cause.

Avon39 walks take place year round across the country. Event locations are New York, Houston, Washington D.C., Chicago, Santa Barbara, San Francisco, and Boston. We encourage everyone to support this great foundation by participating or donating to the walk closest to your community.

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4 Clues Your Teeth Can Give You About Your Sleep Patterns

dean soloAre your teeth hiding important information about your sleep patterns?

Dental sleep medicine is a section of dentistry that studies the connection between oral applications and sleep disorders. This practice has been around for over 40 years, but not all dentists bring attention to it. Dentists are finding that symptoms of abnormal sleep patterns can be seen in your oral health.

Check out your teeth in the mirror next time you are brushing your teeth for these four signs of abnormal sleep patterns:

  1. Flat-Bottomed Teeth
    If your teeth are flat on the bottom, then it’s a sign that you grind your teeth and clench your jaw. If you do this, then you shred your enamel away and that’s something you can’t get back. Grinding teeth at night is a way for your body to reopen your airways, which means there are sleep breathing interruptions at night.
  2. Gapped Teeth
    If you have gaps in your teeth, then it could mean that you have reverse swallows or tongue thrusts. Tongue thrusts push your teeth forward and out which can affect your sleep breathing.
  3. Crowded Teeth
    You may think that crowded teeth are genetic but in most cases, crowded teeth are an indication that the jaw didn’t grow correctly. If you have crowded teeth, you’re more likely to have a small airway which causes interruptions in your sleep breathing.
  4. Breathing Through Teeth
    If you feel yourself constantly having to breathe through your mouth rather than your nose, then you probably have allergies, congestion, or a deviated septum (unaligned cartilage in your nose). These signs can cause sleep apnea, a sleep breathing disorder.

If any of these clues match you, check in with a sleep specialist to see if your sleep breathing patterns are suspicious so you can sleep soundly with a smile.

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About Dr. Dean Salo

Dr. Dean Salo has many years of experience in dentistry, starting with cosmetic restorations. He leads a quality team of dental practitioners and continues to provide excellent service to some famous Los Angeles faces. Dr. Dean Salo has a passion for dentistry and it shows in his high-quality personal care. To learn more about Dr. Dean Salo, visit his website www.deansalo.com or visit his office at 6222 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 102 Los Angeles, CA 90048 (323.933.2400).

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5 Ways to Improve Your Smile

Dr. Dean Salo

Your smile can affect the way you are perceived. A 2008 study revealed that people with whiter teeth are viewed as more attractive and smarter than those with darker teeth. Dr. Dean Salo knows that loving your smile is important so here are 5 tips that will help you improve yours.


  1. Bad Breath

Causes of bad breath include gum disease, poor oral hygiene, mouth sores, chronic inflammation of the nose/throat, smoking, dry mouth, and smelly foods. The best way to get rid of your bad breath is to drink a lot of water, floss, and brush twice a day (remember your tongue). If you wear a retainer or other mouth appliances, make sure you are cleaning them daily. Chronic bad breath can also be a sign of a more serious disorder so be sure to check in with your physician if this occurs.

  1. Healthy Gums

Brushing twice a day and flossing at least once a day will help keep your mouth healthy. Periodontal disease is an infection caused by plaque buildup that makes your gums red, puffy and bloody. Do your best to prevent gum disease by scheduling regular checkups with a dentist, like Dr. Dean Salo, and keeping up good oral hygiene habits.

  1. Teeth Whitening

Whitening results can be obtained by using specific toothpaste, mouth washes, and chewing gum but for faster results try using white strips. Speak with your dentist for more whitening information.

  1. Dental HygieneDr. Dean Salo

The easiest way to make sure you’re taking care of your teeth is to use fluoride toothpaste and floss every day. Whitening toothpaste is also beneficial for removing stains but will not change the color of your teeth.

  1. Bleaching Agents

Dentin is the bony tissue underneath enamel that makes up the composition of our teeth. As our enamel thins, the dentin layer determines tooth color. If your dentin layer is yellowish, use a peroxide-bleaching agent to whiten the coloring. Bleaching agents include over-the-counter paint-on whiteners and whitening strips. These are a cheap, effective way to procure a better, whiter smile.


About Dr. Dean Salo

Dr. Dean Salo is a cosmetic dentist who serves patients from the greater Los Angeles area. He is dedicated to providing high-quality service and procuring results that you will be proud of. For more information and questions about scheduling, financial policies and insurance, contact Dr. Dean Salo’s office at 323.933.2400 or visit his website http://www.deansalo.com.



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Excessive Sugar Intake Destroys Tooth Enamel

More than 70% of Americans unknowingly consume toxic levels of sugar. Along with increasing your risk of heart disease, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and cancer, consuming excessive amounts of sugar is detrimental to your oral health.


Hidden Sugars

The average American consumes 20 teaspoons of sugar daily, which is three times the recommended intake level. These levels are boosted by hidden sugars in processed foods that Americans frequently consume: pasta sauce, salad dressing, granola bars and ketchup are four of the worst offenders.

Mouth Bacteria

Dr. Dean SaloThe human mouth is full of hundreds of bacteria, most of which are beneficial to oral care. However, some mouth bacteria feed on sugar and cause tooth destruction.

After consuming sugary foods or drinks, the plaque bacteria in our mouth turns the ingested sugar into acid. These acids are created in 20 seconds but remain in the mouth for ~30 minutes, attacking and eventually dissolving tooth enamel.

Tooth Enamel & Cavities

Enamel is the shiny outer layer of our teeth critically important in protecting them from infection. Once the acids break through the enamel, cavities begin to develop. Cavities are bacterial infections created by acids that produce holes in our teeth. When untreated, cavities attack deeper than the enamel causing tooth pain and eventual tooth loss.

Mitigating Tooth Damage

Counteract the devastating effects of sugar by re-mineralizing and strengthening your teeth. Chewing sugar-free gum or eating fibrous fruits and vegetables will stimulate saliva which bathes your teeth in minerals. Dairy-based products like cheese and yogurt contain calcium and phosphates that will work to strengthen your teeth. Talk to your dentist about other ways you can prevent irreparable tooth damage.

About Dr. Dean Salo

Dr. Dean Salo is a Los Angeles cosmetic dentist with expertise in both general and cosmetic dentistry. Using specialized techniques, Dr. Dean Salo can fix cosmetic dental problems that others view as permanent damage. He can literally reinvigorate your smile.


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Replacing Lost Teeth Will Improve Overall Health

A very small percentage of the population will make it through their life will all of their teeth. On average, by age 50, Americans will have lost about 12 teeth to gum disease, decay, or injury. Losing teeth affects your smile and may also weaken your jawbone and change your bite.

Thanks to the major advances in prosthetic dentistry, there is no reason to allow lost teeth to affect your health. The empty spaces can be filled with bridges or implants, and many times they are more attractive and functional than the teeth that were lost. Dentistry is a part of your overall health and it is crucial not to allow it to fall by the wayside.


Bridges are made from artificial teeth combined to a metal frame. Bridges are a great option for those needing to replace more than one tooth. The metal frame is attached to crowns of the surrounding teeth or implants.

Getting bridges installed is a shorter process than implants, but still requires multiple dental visits. Visits may include imaging and impressions, preparing the surrounding teeth for the crowns, and fitting the bridge. To learn more about bridges and the procedure, click here.


When there is only one tooth that needs to be replaced, implants are usually the best option. An implant consists of a screw to replace the tooth root in your jaw and a temporary cap. Once the dentist is positive the implant is firmly in place, the cap will be replaced with a post and a crown to match your original teeth. This procedure calls for careful assessment by your dentist to assess the amount of bone where the implant will be placed.

CT scans of your teeth may be taken to check out the bone available for the implant. Sometimes a jawbone may not support an implant. In this case, your dentist may augment the jawbone with a bone-like material before placing an implant. Dr. Dean Salo performs implants along with other procedures, which you can view here.

Talk To Your Dentist

Your dentist will be able to advise you on what option is best for you and your overall health. They will consider your teeth, gums, and jawbone. Make sure to let your dentist know of any health conditions you may have. Conditions like diabetes can affect the healing process.

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