Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Get To Know Dr. Aland

Dr. Troy Aland of Aland Family Dentistry
Dentistry is more than a career for Dr. Troy Aland, it’s a passion. That passion was instilled when Dr. Aland got braces at the age of 10. He treats patients of all ages, and has seen a variety of cases which have helped him change the perception of patients who think that going to the dentist is something to be afraid of. “I always feel so encouraged when I’ve worked on a patient and they walk out of my office with a happy smile on their face. That’s why I became a dentist.”

Dr. Aland moved to Reno, Nevada just before his Freshman year of high school and attended McQueen. After graduation, he attended UNR and served a two year mission where he gained the ability to speak a second language. “Patients are always surprised when I speak Spanish because they are used to bringing a translator. I am able to treat them on a more personal level when I can communicate directly with them, and that’s been a huge benefit to our practice.”

Dr. Aland completes an oral exam on a patient.
After completing his mission, Dr. Aland attended Brigham Young University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Zoology. While home between semesters, he met his wife Lisa and they married just a few weeks after Dr. Aland graduated from BYU. The next stop on their adventure was dental school.

Dr. Aland attended Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska. Upon graduating in 2004, he began working at Healthy Smiles Family Dentistry in Yerington, Nevada. Dr. Aland gained a lot of experience and developed great relationships. In fact, he still has a few patients who drive from Yerington to Reno for their dental care.

In 2007, Dr. Aland opened his own practice, Aland Family Dentistry, in Reno. He started with only a few patients just as the recession hit, and built his practice from the ground up. In a few years, Aland Family Dentistry outgrew its first location and in April 2013, they moved to their current location at 85 Continental Drive, near Midtown.

From the moment you walk into Aland Family Dentistry, you feel something very different than most dental offices, which Dr. Aland attributes to Lisa’s vision. “Her goal is to make every patient feel like they are home and know they’ve come to the right place. The decor in the waiting area, the paint colors, and the flow of the floor plan are all meant to create an atmosphere of comfort for our patients,” Dr. Aland said.

In 2014, Dr. and Lisa Aland were named the “Small Business Administration Nevada Family Owned Business of the Year.” When Dr. Aland was presented with a plaque at the awards ceremony, he accepted by saying, “Usually I’m anti-plaque, but in this case I’m willing to make an exception.” This demonstrates what patients love most about Dr. Aland — his witty sense of humor!

Dr. Aland and his family at Disneyland in 2015.
Aland Family Dentistry is truly a family business for the Aland’s. Lisa and the kids, three girls and one boy ages 14 to 5, frequently visit and help out at the office. They have helped clean the office on weekends, file charts, and shred papers. “We anticipate that Aland Family Dentistry will continue on for many years. It’s a great profession and I would be pleased if any of my kids wanted to pursue a career in the field of dentistry,” Dr. Aland said.

Dr. Aland and his family enjoy vacationing together — their favorite spot is Disneyland! Troy and Lisa enjoy Broadway shows at the Pioneer Theater, and Troy is a huge Cubs fan. They love to give back to the community by visiting local schools to do dental health presentations, and last November, Aland Family Dentistry gave one lucky patient free dental care for a year.

Free dentistry for a year was a welcome surprise to one our
favorite patients!
Enjoying an active lifestyle comes back to one common element — taking care of your health. The mouth is the window to the body. Recent studies show that gum disease increases your risk for heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s. Visiting our office for dental check ups every 4-6 months, in addition to proper home care, can help maintain the health of your gums, and catch any problems before they create bigger health concerns.

Our courteous and professional team is dedicated to making sure you have the most comfortable experience possible. At Aland Family Dentistry, we treat YOU like family. We look forward to welcoming YOU to our family of patients!

Monday, July 4, 2016

George Washington's Teeth

It's Independence Day -- today we pay tribute to our beautiful country and those who bravely fought for our freedom, including George Washington, our country's first president.

 Washington suffered from dental problems most of his life and many people think he wore dentures made of wooden teeth. A few years ago, Dr. Troy Aland of Aland Family Dentistry visited George Washington's Mount Vernon on a family trip, and learned the truth about this myth.

Washington's teeth were NOT made of wood, but rather a combination of horse, cow, and human teeth, as well as hippopotamus ivory. Washington recorded in multiple journal entries about jaw pain, toothaches, inflamed gums, and other dental problems. During the Revolutionary War, he sought the care of a French dentist to care for his dental issues, and they continued to remain close after the war.

According to journal entries, Washington had his first tooth extracted at the age of 24. By the time he was inaugurated President of the United States in 1789, he only had one working tooth remaining. He kept some of his teeth and later used them in denture fittings. He bought human teeth from African-Americans, a common practice in the 1700's, but it is unclear if these teeth were used in his dentures.
George Washington's dentures on display at Mount Vernon.
Photo Cred: Dr. Troy Aland

Over the years, the shape of Washington's face changed due to his dental problems. His lips bulged out, making them appear swollen. His jaw and mouth appeared augmented. Washington was self conscious of his appearance, and toward the end of his presidency he spoke less in public because his dentures made it increasingly difficult to speak.

Martha Washington also wore dentures, though she was not plagued with as many dental problems as her husband. She encouraged her children and grandchildren to take good care of their teeth so they wouldn't have to deal with the discomforts she and George Washington did.

Technological advancements in the field of dentistry have drastically improved the aesthetic issues caused by poor oral health. If George Washington were a patient at our dental office, Dr. Aland would give him a bright, sparkling new smile using dental implants. It's amazing how much has changed in the 200 + years since Washington was alive.

Get out and enjoy your favorite summer foods, play on your day off, and have a wonderful Fourth of July!!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

What's That Stuck In Your Teeth?

Summer is a great time to enjoy the outdoors, longer days and laid back schedules. It's also a time to enjoy some great foods -- just be mindful of how those foods affect your smile.

Dr. Aland's son enjoys some tasty ribs, fresh from the grill.
Ribs -- One of our favorite Reno events is the "Best In the West Nugget Rib Cook-Off" held every year over Labor Day weekend. We also enjoy BBQ ribs over the 4th of July holiday! While ribs are quite tasty, the meat can wedge between your teeth, causing troubles to your bite. The discomfort can last until you find some floss and dislodge the culprit. Feel free to show off your saucy smile, just be sure to keep your teeth and gums healthy while you're at it!

Popcorn -- Many families love to visit the drive-in movies during the summer. Experiences like that create memories to last a lifetime! Popcorn is the perfect snack to occupy your teeth while enjoying a good flick, however, beware of those pesky popcorn kernels that get caught in the little nooks and crannies of your gums. Popcorn husks can be thin enough to lodge under your gums, making it extremely difficult to remove them by brushing alone. Flossing after a popcorn snack is essential to maintaining optimal oral health.

Berries -- Summer is berry season, but the seeds from eating nature's dessert can be a nuisance. Did you know the average raspberry has 120 seeds, which can jam into the grooves of your molars? Like ribs and popcorn kernels, flossing is the best way to remove them and ensure healthy gums. With that being said, berries rank among the most antioxidant-rich fruits. Feel free to eat as many berries as you want, just make sure to remove the seeds in your teeth when you're done.

Flossing vs. Toothpicks -- Traditional dental floss is the best way to remove food that has become lodged between your teeth. Floss sticks are a convenient alternative that you can keep in your purse or car. Toothpicks are another convenient alternative, but are generally not recommended due to the damage they can cause to your teeth and gums. They can lacerate your gums, causing them to bleed, or scrape away the protective enamel on your teeth. If a toothpick is all you have access to, use it with care and all should be well.

With these tips and this preventative info., you (and your teeth,) can enjoy a safe and healthy summer! If someone asks you "got teeth?" you can say, "Yes I do!"

Friday, June 24, 2016

Summer Travels? Don't Forget Your Toothbrush!!

The summer season is officially upon us, and that means vacation time! Packing to leave for a trip can be stressful. Have you ever forgotten to pack something really important because you were in a rush to get out of town?

Bathroom products like a toothbrush, toothpaste or floss, are among the most common items travelers forget to pack. If you get stuck in this predicament, here are a few tips to get you by.

Use Baking Soda -- If you have baking soda, you can mix a little bit with water on your finger and rub it back and forth on your teeth, using your  finger as a toothbrush. You can also use a rag to brush your teeth. Baking soda doesn't taste very good, but it will brighten your smile and help your mouth feel fresh because it's a great acid reducer and cleanser.

Dry Brushing -- If you have a toothbrush, but forgot your toothpaste, you can still brush your teeth using just your toothbrush. Dry brushing is a wonderful technique and is recommended by some hygienists as a regular method of oral healthcare maintenance. It helps you clean all surfaces of your teeth thoroughly, but it will not freshen breath. Use mouthwash or gum containing Xylitol to give you that minty fresh taste.

Swishing -- Some good 'ol high quality H2O can help dislodge food from your teeth, which is better than letting it sit there. Swishing is especially good after eating sugary snacks or drinking beverages containing sugar.

If your travels take you out in nature, keep in mind that the flavors in toothpaste products can attract wildlife. It's best to spit your toothpaste into a campfire or the cathole you're using as a bathroom (if you have one.) You can also swish your mouth with some water, then spray the residue over a wide area. Keep in mind that toothpaste contains fluoride which can be harmful if swallowed in larger amounts, so if you choose to swallow your toothpaste residue, use very little toothpaste. Above all, don't spit your toothpaste in one spot, or too close to your location. That can attract (un)friendly visitors and could put a damper on your vacay.

Keep your toothbrush and toothpaste in a sealed container, such as a Ziploc bag, when traveling to avoid contamination. Besides, opening up your suitcase to find toothpaste exploded all over your favorite outfit is never a good way to start off your time away.

Happy Trails, Safe Travels, Bon Voyage!! Don't forget to enter our Summer Photo Contest! Visit our website for details: AlandFamilyDentistry.com/contests

Summer Photo Contest

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

You Just Graduated ..... Now What?

Dr. Troy Aland graduating from Creighton
University School of Dentistry in 2004.
Graduation season has passed, and many young adults find themselves asking the question, "Now what?"


Dr. Troy Aland of Aland Family Dentistry decided to become a dentist because he loves science and enjoys helping people. "I wanted to find a career that combined the two, but I also wanted to be able to spend time with my family. I talked with a lot of doctors and professionals, and ultimately decided that a career in dentistry was a great blend of all those qualities. Plus, teeth are super cool!"

Dentistry offers a variety of opportunities for work in a professional setting:

Registered Dental Hygienist -- Dental hygienists help patients learn to properly care for their teeth and gums. They start by taking x-rays and probe your gums to look for signs of bacteria or disease, such as gingivitis. They clean calculus off your teeth, or the buildup that happens over time from food and saliva, floss in between each tooth and apply fluoride to protect your teeth from decay. The most important part of their job is building relationships with people and motivating them to take good care of their smile.

Certified Dental Assistant -- Dental assistants sit chair side with the dentist while he/she restores the patient's smile. They take x-rays and talk with patients about treatment. Their job is to keep patients comfortable during their appointment. They hold the suction equipment so the doctor has clear visibility in the mouth. They sterilize instruments and prepare rooms for patients.

Dental Office Administration --  If sucking spit or cleaning teeth all day don't fit your fancy, consider working on the administrative side of dentistry. There are many different job titles for the vast array of administrative tasks required to run a dental office. Some of the more common titles are: Office Manager, Insurance Coordinator, Treatment Coordinator, or Scheduling Coordinator. Each of these jobs require excellent verbal communication skills, as well as an understanding of dental terminology, management software and insurance. Some offices are willing to train on the job for the required skills, but more competitive wages are offered to those who have experience.

The best way to gain experience is networking with dental offices to find an  internship. Online programs are another option, but it's important to make personal connections in addition to online training. Ultimately, the best person to talk to would be YOUR dentist. If you've been influenced by your personal experience visiting the dentist, then that's a great place to start because you already have a familiarity with the office staff.

Whatever you decide to do in life, make sure you are passionate about what you choose. If you don't absolutely LOVE your career choice, you will dread going to work every day. Do what you love and love what you do!

Friday, June 17, 2016

Aland Family Dentistry Summer Photo Contest

What are your plans for the summer? Do you plan to kick back and relax on the beaches of Lake Tahoe, or maybe hang out in the sun at Wild Island Water Park? Maybe you plan to travel the world! Of course, there are plenty of things to do around Reno if you like to stay close to home.

No matter what your plans are, we'd love to hear about them -- not just hear about them, but SEE them! Stop by our office to pick up an Aland Family Dentistry "got teeth?" t-shirt, and venture off into the sunset. Take a pic in your tee and post it on our Facebook page. Or you can post it on Instagram with #AFDsmilecontest2016! 

At the end of the summer, you could win a Fitbit Alta, Kindle e-reader, or an iTunes gift card. All you have to do is post a pic in your "got teeth?" t-shirt! Be creative and have fun with your posts! Contact our office with any questions, or to schedule your next appointment -- 775.323.3366!

Monday, April 6, 2015

Aland Family Dentistry's 1st Official Blog Post

A dental blog. Who reads blogs about Dentistry? Unless you're in the Dental Field, or you really LOVE your dentist, why would you read a dental blog?

Because it's interesting.
Because it's funny.
Because it's a way to get to know your dentist and his team better.
Because you're interested in Dentistry yourself.
Because you enjoy reading blogs.

If you can think of any other reasons, please leave them in the comments.

Our office is pleased to bring you the latest in dental research and technology, help you understand your dental visit better, and add humor to help ease the tension caused by visiting the dentist. We hope our blog is the perfect avenue to interact with our patients and other dental health professionals.

Did you know that 47% of people surveyed said the first thing they notice about someone is their smile? Your smile says so much about you! It reflects confidence, kindness, happiness and so many other attributes.


Just something to think about. Look at this survey -- you could stink and people wouldn't care as much as if you have a terrible smile. 4 times as many people care more about a smile than your smell. That's a lot! So the choice is yours ...... skip showering, or skip brushing your teeth? The more effort you put into your smile, the better first impression you can make!