A Note to Parents About Your Child’s Diet and Oral Health

I imagine that most of you don’t feed your children the typical American breakfast cereals and donuts, but I imagine you know of other moms and dads who do. Maybe you can be a good influence on them if you hear these facts. Really incredible how horrific the cereal companies are in that they count on deceptive measures to try to convince parents that they are going to bat for us and are on our side. Trust one thing – they are ONLY on the side of financial gain.

It’s not normal for kids to get decay. Stay off of juices, sippy drinks and fruit gels of any kind. Water, water, water. Only. Anything else is a TREAT, reserved for a special occasion. If they play sports, again, WATER. Stay completely away from PowerAde and Gatorade and all the trendy sports drinks. They are fatal for decay. Soda, also. If you have been under the misconception that juice is a must, and your child has grown accustomed to juice, begin diluting it gradually until it is simply a splash of juice in a cup of water.

Stay away from the sour candies and sticky candies. Dried fruits are also a big danger.

Eat fruits in their “whole” natural state for the fiber and to keep from sudden blood sugar rises that are always consistent with fruit juice drinking. Do not allow fruit juices to be had, even if 100% natural. If you are juicing at home, use primarily veggies in the juicing in the ratio of 4 or 5 servings of veggies to one serving of fruit.

This info goes for EVERYONE.

If juices are a part of your life or your family’s life for any reason, always make a habit of rinsing and swishing with water immediately afterwards. Then swallow the water. But do your best to eliminate them as a part of your routine by diluting as mentioned above.

Do NOT brush within 30 minutes of ingestion of fruits and other sweets, as you do not want to brush the acid residue into the teeth.

And speaking of water, I recommend Reverse Osmosis water but you must add minerals to it as water is a prime source of minerals. We just don’t want the toxins. You can get a system put on your home faucet or can get gallons of it at Whole Foods.

Make sure your infants are checked at birth for tongue and lip ties and if you need instructions for what to do after the tongue tie or lip tie releases, please email me. I have some very specific instructions I give my patients. This is a really important step in the growth and development of the jaws and the face and in the prevention of snoring and sleep apnea, as well as many other behavioral and medical issues in life.

If your child snores or grinds his or her teeth at night, you have a child who is not breathing properly. This is what we call sleep disordered breathing. It’s important to find a dentist skilled in treating this EARLY on. There is so much to raising a healthy babe, but we can get kids through life cavity and periodontal disease free if we work with them early. Get them in for their first dental appointment by the time they are 6 months to 1 year old, whether or not they have teeth.

Call us to make an appointment. 757.223.9270 www.PWDentalArts.com

Posted in Dental Health

A Note to All Parents: Your Child, Sleep, and the Growth and Development of the Mouth


We know that children do not come with an instruction book. We know that you can’t know everything. So we’ve put this list together. It’s a list of things that are NOT normal and should not be ignored when it comes to your child and sleep. These things are signs of a problem.  Please don’t ignore the warning signs listed here. Please insist on seeing a health care professional who actually knows what all these problems potentially mean. You may need to see more than one person to sort these problems out but one of those practitioners will often be a dentist and a pediatric ENT that deals with “upper airway obstruction” in kids. A Myofunctional Therapist is another type of practitioner who can be instrumental in the growth, development and functional health of your child’s airway and jaw relationship. We are happy to be in the position to help your child and also to guide you to the right people for proper collaboration. Some of the things on this list will occur in many children who are developing normally. However, others are indicative of serious growth and development issues that can be treated best if treated when your child is younger rather than older.

Here is the list:

  1. Tongue or lip ties
  2. Difficulty breastfeeding
  3. Snoring
  4. Mouth breathing
  5. Stopping breathing when asleep
  6. Teeth grinding when asleep
  7. Sleep talking
  8. Sleep walking
  9. Night terrors
  10. Bed wetting beyond about 8 years of age, maybe even 5
  11. Waking up tired
  12. Tired during the day
  13. Emotional sensitivity- for example cries at drop of a hat, moody, grumpy, anger management issues 14. Educational problems
  14. Behavioral issues
  15. Sleeping with the head arched back
  16. Restless sleep, tossing and turning
  17. The bed is all messed up
  18. Sweating at night
  19. Chewing on food and spitting certain ones out consistently- especially meat
  20. Repeated ear infections
  21. Drools on the pillow
  22. Wakes up with a headache
  23. Gasping or waking with a startle
  24. Fidgety during the day, can’t sit still
  25. Has symptoms suggestive of ADHD
  26. Has to be propped up on a few pillows to sleep
  27. Wakes with a dry mouth and/or dry lips
  28. Lower jaw sits backwards relative to the upper jaw when viewed from the side
  29. A narrow upper jaw, with the roof of the mouth sometimes forming a high arch at the same time
  30. When the mouth is wide open, the tongue cannot touch the roof of the mouth
  31. Has chewing and/or swallowing problems
  32. A regular or persistent blocked nose
  33. Coughing at night
  34. Regular throat clearing
  35. Frequent bloody noses, specifically when asleep.

The above symptoms are often indicative of disturbances in breathing – and affect the proper growth and development of the jaws. They can lead to a lifetime of the serious health issues that occur from the conditions of snoring and sleep apnea.

In getting advice, do not accept the following answers without getting a second opinion because the following answers are often given but are often not substantiated by the research:

  1. They will outgrow it
  2. It’s normal, lots of kids do this
  3. It’s just how he/she is
  4. It’s only a quiet snore so don’t worry about it
  5. They just take after their dad/mom
  6. If you can hear them breathing that’s ok, it means they are alive
  7. Some kids just take a longer time than others to stop wetting the bed
  8. It’s just a normal phase they are going through

It is very important to use this list to re-evaluate what you believe.

And it’s important you attend to things quickly. The research shows that it only takes 6 months of sleep problems to lead to permanent damage. Damage to the brain, damage to the heart. Damage throughout the body. So please act now.

We can help. We will listen. We will take you seriously. You are not being a paranoid parent. Don’t let your worries be dismissed.

Call us to make an appointment. 757.223.9270 www.PWDentalArts.com

Posted in Uncategorized

Live Securley with Fountain of Youth™Dentures!

Do your dentures cause you embarrassment and pain? They may be loose and even hurt badly enough that you don’t even wear them. Some dentures float and lift, causing sore gums because they rock and food traps underneath them. Other dentures cause a lisp or a click during speaking or eating. Worn-out or “economy dentures” may cause you embarrassment and discomfort. These are the kind of dentures that can give dentures a bad name.

What do you mean by “Fountain of Youth™ Dentures?” When Port Warwick Dental Arts creates Fountain of Youth™ Dentures for you, you will look years younger – like you’ve had a facelift! And best of all, no facial surgery is needed. Sound pretty amazing? It is – and artist/dentist Dr. Lisa Marie Samaha and her Lab Assistant have been providing them for years. In fact, Port Warwick Dental Arts became the first practice in Virginia (and one of the first in the world) to be trained in this technique. At Port Warwick Dental Arts, Dr. Samaha has been creating beautiful smiles since 1982, to include custom-designed dentures. Often many hours of appointment time and try-ins were needed in order to accomplish what we can now do in a fraction of the time with the Fountain of Youth™ Denture technique. Now, these custom-fashioned dentures can be yours, often from start-to-finish, in a matter of a few hours of relaxing appointment time. With this technique, we are able to quickly determine where your teeth would have ideally been located when you were in your twenties or thirties. We will listen to your desires and create a new, refreshed smile that looks natural and feels comfortable.

Why do people who lose teeth often look so old, so fast? When a person loses all of their teeth and gets a set of dentures, jaw bone has already been destroyed. Many times the cause for the bone loss is periodontal disease. Periodontal (gum) disease is an infection of the gums and the jawbone. This common and aggressive disease can cause drastic bone loss. Uncontrollable infection can set in, and teeth become loose and must be removed. When the jaw bone is eaten away as a result of the gum infection, the roots of the teeth no longer have any “soil” to dig into. Gum disease is the number one reason people loose teeth. Even if you don’t have bone loss before you get dentures, bone loss is natural after you get dentures. This is because after teeth are lost, the jaw bone is programmed to disappear. Eventually, you will get a “sunken-in” face. Your chin and your nose will get closer together as your face begins to collapse, aging you rapidly. Fountain of Youth™ Dentures help to restore the soft facial tissue and recreate the lost jaw bone. Fountain of Youth™ Dentures support the face the same way your natural teeth and bone supported your face many years ago.

What if my bone loss is so severe I no longer have a ridge on which to place the dentures? Great news! The Fountain of Youth™ Denture technique will still be successful for you. In fact, the loss of the jawbone will be minimized by the Fountain of Youth™ technique, which includes a specific plan to help preserve your bone. Other options might include nutritional support, grafting and/or implant placement for those who have or are in danger of severe bone deterioration. If your bone loss is extremely severe and your ridge is not stable enough to hold any denture in place, Dr. Samaha is also experienced in the placement and restoration of dental implants; small titanium posts which are gently placed in your jaw bone and snap onto a tiny attachment inside your denture. The denture will fit securely, no longer rocking or slipping while eating or speaking. Voila’! You not only have a beautiful smile, but you can eat nearly anything you want!!

The smile of my dreams? One thing is for certain, Fountain of Youth™ Dentures are not a passing craze. Your Fountain of Youth™ Dentures will be as close to the “real deal” as anything you can imagine. Just call us today to schedule a consultation.

Posted in Dentures, Fountain of Youth™, FOY Dentures®

Focusing on Total Health

“My story began about a year ago when I started experiencing severe mouth problems. I had always thought my teeth were fine; a bit coffee stained, but solid. To this point, I had always brushed every day (usually twice). I had never had a cavity. Then some of my teeth just began to become loose, and fall out. I began seeing a local dentist, but for a variety of reasons I did not feel comfortable with him, and started to look for a new dentist.

I was diagnosed with Stage 4 Periodontal Disease, which, as Dr. Samaha explained, was affecting not only my mouth but my overall health. I had very serious bone loss in my jaw, and the infection associated with it was literally poisoning my entire body. Dr. Samaha carefully and completely reviewed with me the options, and suggested treatments. While she concurred with my prior dentist that I would require some extractions, she held the belief that some of my teeth could be saved. This bit of good news still left me a bit frightened about what I imagined was going to be a long and difficult but necessary procedure.

We have come a long way in short while, the Doctor and I, and we are not at the end yet, but I have full confidence that we will succeed in repairing my dental issues. She has already improved my overall health in extraordinary ways. Thank you, Dr. Samaha!”

Geoffery DeLara

Radio Station Announcer

Gloucester, Va

Posted in Gum disease, Periodontal Treatment

Fountain of Youth Advantages Over Traditional Dentures

Fountain of Youth™ Dentures offer many advantages over traditional dentures in both health and aesthetic arenas. Although more expensive than traditional dentures, there is no comparison to the benefits Fountain of Youth™ Dentures give their wearers. Although economy dentures may be tempting because of their cost-saving factors, the added benefit of having a denture that maintains and supports your face as well as allows you to eat whatever you want is much more appealing than one which leads to jawbone deterioration and an aged appearance.

Neuromuscular Benefits

Other dentures do not provide direct stimulation to the alveolar bone and as a result don’t allow the jawbones (upper and lower) an opportunity to maintain their shape and function. Traditional dentures only serve to replace missing teeth where Fountain of Youth™ Dentures replace teeth and stimulate the jawbone through neuromuscular function and support.

Other dentures that are loose often make it difficult for the patient to speak, laugh or eat. Fountain of Youth™ Dentures offer a superior fit and the added benefit of optimum muscle relaxation and function. If you want a dental restoration that allows you to smile confidently again, schedule a consultation for Fountain of Youth™ Dentures and you will be on your way to experiencing the following benefits:

  • Plumper Lips
  • Less Wrinkles
  • Improved Facial Appearance
  • Better Chewing & Speaking Capabilities
  • Better Fit Than Other Dentures
  • Improved Underlying Facial Support
Posted in Dentures, Fountain of Youth™, FOY Dentures®

Nutrients Benefit Your Dental Health. Why?

Nutritional support is an essential ingredient of our periodontal (gum) disease therapy. Beginning in the 1980’s, Dr. Samaha initiated leading edge clinical evaluations into the positive effects of nutritional supplementation on periodontal disease. Building on success, Port Warwick Dental Arts continues to explore, develop, and innovate in the expanding field of nutritional support.

For those being treated for periodontal disease, we find it is necessary to inorportate pharmaceutical-grade nutrients of the highest quality and absorbability, specifically useful for improving the health of the soft tissues in the mouth. Because the mouth is the home of the most aggressive bacteria and the most delicate tissue in the body, the periodontal tissues possess an extraordinarily high and unique nutritional appetite. We want to reduce pocket depth, bleeding and inflammation. Developed to support the body, high level nutrients can inhibit enzyme release, prevent plaque accumulation, and enhance bone healing and gum tissue regeneration while strengthening and replenishing the immune system.

Posted in Dental Health, Oral health

Treat Gum Recession Through a Pinhole!

Gum recession occurs due to periodontal disease and/or mechanical forces on the gums from clenching, grinding and incorrect tooth brushing. Gums begin pulling away and creeping down the roots of the teeth. When there is no gum tissue over the roots of teeth, there is no bone, either. This makes teeth sensitive to eating and drinking temperatures, even tooth brushing. Eventually, teeth may become abscessed and/or so loose they can actually fall out. Traditionally, the procedure for treating gum recession was surgical gum grafting, which repaired the gums but was a remarkably invasive treatment with painful recovery, involving cutting gum tissue from the roof of the mouth and grafting it over the roots of the teeth.


In the past, gum grafting could take one or two hours for one tooth. Remarkable as it sounds, Dr. Samaha, using the Pinhole Recession Technique™ can treat up to 14 teeth per hour with this gum recession technique. You can make one trip to our comfortable office within Hampton Roads to receive this gum recession treatment, instead of many repeated surgeries to repair gum recession on many teeth. Follow up appointments are quick, painless and easy.


The Pinhole Gum Recession Treatment™ can be the optimum treatment for gum recession. As revealed in the Journal of Periodontics and Restorative Dentistry, 2012, you can be assured that it is as effective as traditional methods, if not more so.


Whereas the original gum surgery required more hours of time and cutting of the roof of your mouth and your gums, the Pinhole Surgical Technique™ is performed through a tiny pinhole or two. Really. No incisions. No sutures. No tissue cut from the roof of your mouth.


Traditionally, your healing time for gum surgery to treat gum recession would have been two to three weeks. You can typically get the Pinhole Receding Gums Treatment™ done and eat dinner comfortably that night!


The gum recession area is covered immediately and looks beautiful right away.

If you have gum recession or some of the symptoms of this problem and are concerned about the pain and extended recovery time from traditional gum grafting surgery, please call our office serving Hampton Roads and the Williamsburg VA and surrounding areas. Aesthetic results are immediate! We are excited to help give you the use of your healthy teeth, mouth and smile in a miraculously short time!

Posted in Pinhole Surgical Technique™

Straight Teeth. Nearly Invisible Braces on the Fast Track

Adults, no need to worry about sporting that teen metal-mouth look for years. With Six Month Smile™, Dr. Lisa Marie Samaha of Port Warwick Dental Arts in Newport News is able to straighten your teeth in a matter of months, with nearly invisible braces. “You’ll be done in three to nine months with most patients finishing treatment in six months,” she says.

For adults whose bite and jaws don’t need to be re-aligned, Six Month Smiles™ is a great option for fast track results – and a more appealing smile before your next dental checkup. Six Month Smiles®, using special tooth-colored nickel titanium wires and clear brackets, features a conservative treatment designed to safely and gently straighten your teeth– primarily those that show when you smile, Samaha says. The focus is on those who desire cosmetic improvement, as opposed to a major jaw and bite realignment, she clarifies.

Good news: “Teeth are rarely extracted, there’s little trauma to the mouth, and minimal, if any discomfort. This is because Six Month Smile™ uses light forces over a short period of time.” More good news: the Six Month Smile™ method is typically less costly than other types of orthodontics. And even more good news: because the clear braces are bonded to your teeth, your compliance, and therefore, your success, is automatic, unlike the “clear align” or “invisalign” removable orthodontic trays which are totally dependent upon you wearing them almost 24/7, for up to 2 years.

“Dentists who have used the ‘clear align’ method in the past are particularly attracted to Six Month Smile™ because the doctor has more control in moving the teeth and also because of the fine detail that can be achieved with the Six Month Smile™ method,” she says. “You can see a need and adjust for it immediately. With clear aligners, it’s sometimes challenging to predict treatment time and the fine tuning is often unable to be accomplished as carefully and efficiently as with Six Month Smile®.”

Samaha says, “Oftentimes, people look at investing in porcelain veneers in order to have straighter smiles.” As a cosmetically trained dentist, Samaha has been creating beautiful smiles with porcelain veneers since 1982. “Although I still use porcelain veneers frequently, Six Month Smile™ are one-fifth to one-third the cost of using porcelain veneers to straighten teeth, and require minimal, if any reduction of tooth structure. With Six Month Smiles® being typically less expensive than traditional orthodontic methods, the concept is a win-win,” Samaha says.

After your treatment is complete, you’ll wear a retainer to help keep your teeth in place. The retainer can be removable, or conservatively bonded to the inside of your teeth where it cannot be seen. Most prefer the bonded style.

At Port Warwick Dental Arts, where healthy, great looking smiles are created every day, results extend beyond straighter teeth. As an added bonus for those who think braces are only equated with vanity, straighter teeth mean a healthier mouth. “Crooked teeth can cause periodontal swelling and inflammation because the gum tissue is crowded out,” Samaha says, “and because it’s difficult to properly clean teeth when they are overlapping.”

So, not only do Six Month Smile™ allow an adult to enjoy a healthy, more youthful smile, they also help to resolve and prevent the periodontal problems encouraged by crowded teeth.

Hands down, Six Month Smile™ can be the perfect “quick-turn-around” option for a straighter, healthier and more attractive smile.

Posted in Orthodontics, Six Month Smiles

You May Have It…

Periodontal disease is a common and challenging bacterial infection that affects the gums and the bone supporting the teeth. It can also affect the whole body in strikingly dangerous ways. Periodontal disease can even delay conception and cause harm to mother and baby during pregnancy. Alarmingly, scientific research shows that up to 85 percent of the adult population has some level of periodontal (gum) disease and only about 10 percent know they have it.

How dangerous is periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease can wreak havoc on the entire body. Bad breath and bleeding, swollen and/or recessed gums can be some of the first signs of periodontal disease, but may not be obvious until the middle to late stages of the disease. If left untreated, the disease can lead to bone loss in the jaw, more serious gum abscesses (“gum boils”), loose teeth and even tooth loss. Most of all, the health of the entire body is at risk when periodontal disease is present.

What’s worse, periodontal disease is highly contagious and can be transmitted via mouth-to-mouth kissing or by sharing food and/or drinks. It’s an inflammatory disease, which is why it is so destructive to every organ and cell in your body (and your developing baby). So it’s important for both partners to get checked—and treated—even before conception. In addition to being harmful to mother and baby during development, periodontal disease can also affect conception. An Australian study published in 2012 found that women with periodontal disease take an average of two months longer to conceive (seven months) than those without gum problems (five months).

What are my options?

Because periodontal disease is such a complex infection, its management requires a multi-faceted approach. There are many steps you can take to avoid gum surgery, loss of teeth and complications in the rest of the body as long as you are under the watchful eye of a dental professional experienced in treating periodontal disease.

For decades, Dr. Lisa Marie Samaha of Port Warwick Dental Arts has been urging people to understand the direct correlation between good dental health and overall wellness. Over the last three decades, Dr. Samaha has developed a private practice devoted to comprehensive dental care for the ultimate goal of what she refers to as “Total Body Wellness through Complete Health Dentistry.”

You may have periodontal disease…

Lisa Marie Samaha, DDS
Creating Beautiful, Healthy Smiles
in Hampton Roads since 1982

Posted in Uncategorized

People With Periodontal Disease Have Higher Cancer Risk

People who have periodontal disease have a higher overall risk of developing cancer, say researchers in the June issue of The Lancet, Oncology.

Studies have suggested that tooth loss and periodontal disease might increase patients’ risk of developing cancer, but smoking might have confounded the association.

To determine whether periodontal disease or tooth loss is associated with cancer, Dominique S. Michaud, ScD, Imperial College London, and colleagues from Harvard University, Boston, and University of Puerto Rico, San Juan, used data from the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study (HPFS, originally begun in 1986).

Participants reported baseline periodontal disease with bone loss, number of natural teeth and tooth loss in previous two years, as well as smoking history and food intake. They also reported any new cancer diagnoses on the follow-up questionnaires. The endpoints researchers measured were overall cancer risk and individual cancers with more than 100 cases reported.

A total of 48,375 men with a median follow-up of 17.7 years were eligible for the study. Researchers recorded 5,720 cases of cancer (excluding non-melanoma skin cancer and non-aggressive prostate cancer) among the participants. The five most common cancers were colorectal (1,043), melanoma of the skin (698), lung (678), bladder (543) and advanced prostate (541).

After adjusting for known risk factors, including smoking history and dietary factors, they found that participants with a history of periodontal disease had a 14 percent higher risk of developing cancer than did participants with no history of periodontal disease. Researchers noted significant associations between periodontal disease and lung, kidney, pancreas and hematologic cancers. They also noted that having fewer teeth at baseline was associated with an increased risk of developing lung cancer.

The study was funded by a grant from the National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute.

Posted in Gum disease, Periodontal Treatment
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