Why Your Smile Deserves An AACD Dentist

YOUR SMILE IS AN expression of who you are. It is that special thing that greets a friend, celebrates all of life’s joyful moments, and makes someone’s day that much brighter. We know how important your smile is to you and those around you. That’s why Dr. Annie Yu  is a member of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD), so we can always provide the best and most up-to-date care to our patients!

What Is The AACD?

The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry is an international organization dedicated to advancing dental excellence in the art and science of cosmetic dentistry. Their mission is to educate dental professionals on the latest technology and techniques in cosmetic dentistry as well as encourage the highest standards of ethical conduct and patient care.

Did you know that any dentist can claim to be a cosmetic dentist, no matter their experience or skill level? Because Dr. Yu  is an AACD member, you can trust that the cosmetic dental procedures performed at our practice meet the highest standards of quality, ethics and aesthetics.

We Go The Extra Mile For Our Patients

Our number one priority is our patients’ safety and satisfaction. We’re always willing to go the extra mile to ensure that we are providing the best care to every single person that comes into our office!

As an AACD member, Dr. Yu is constantly improving her skills and learning how to better serve you. Why? Because you deserve the smile of your dreams, and we’re here to make that dream a reality!

Thank you for choosing our practice!


The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Ever Wonder How Teeth Whitening Works?

IT IS NOT UNCOMMON for your teeth to lose their luster over time, which is why so many people are interested in whitening them!

Teeth Get Yellow For A Number Of Reasons

Teeth becoming yellow over time is as normal as graying hair–it is a natural part of the aging process. As we get older, our tooth enamel begins to thin due to everyday wear and tear. This causes the layer beneath our enamel, called the dentin, to show more, giving our teeth a more yellow appearance.

There are other factors that can cause teeth to yellow other than aging however, such as:

  • Tobacco use
  • Food and drink
  • Poor dental hygiene
  • Dental trauma
  • Certain medications

If you want to prevent your teeth from yellowing as best you can, we suggest you change some of your lifestyle habits. If you use tobacco in any form, quit. Consume acidic food and drink in moderation and monitor your intake of beverages that can stain your teeth such as wine, coffee, tea, soda, etc. And as always, brush up on your oral hygiene habits and make sure you’re getting frequent cleanings!

The Way You Whiten Your Teeth Depends On The Stain

There are two types of stains that you can have on your teeth. Surface, or “extrinsic” stains, caused by smoking and diet occur on the surface of the enamel. “Intrinsic” stains are deeper, and happen inside the tooth.

You can remove surface stains on your teeth by using a whitening toothpaste. These kinds of toothpastes usually contain special abrasives that gently polish the teeth as well certain chemicals that can help break down stains. These toothpastes can be tough on tooth enamel, so make sure to always read labels when using them–some should only be used temporarily.

Intrinsic stains can’t be helped by whitening toothpastes. To get that brighter smile, you’ll need to actually change the color of your teeth. You can do this using a bleaching agent. The bleaching agents most products use are hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. These chemicals break stains into smaller pieces, making their color less concentrated and leaving your teeth much whiter! Some of the most common ways to bleach your teeth are whitening strips and gels, tray-based tooth whiteners and in-office whitening services supervised by a dentist.

We Would Love To See You At Our Office

At our practice, we offer in-office “power whitening” that will get you the white smile you’ve been dreaming of in half the time or less than other whitening options. We will also carefully monitor the whole process to ensure its safety and efficacy.

If you’re looking to use a tray-based whitening system, we can customize your mouthpiece to exactly fit your teeth! This will protect the soft tissues of your mouth, especially your gums, as well as ensure maximum contact between your teeth and the whitening solution.

Or, if you’re not quite sure you want to commit to the customized trays just yet, we also offer disposable trays that not only have more prescription-like strength whitening material, but also adapt to your teeth much better than the over-the-counter Crest White-type strips.

Either way, we’d love to see you, whether that’s for a cleaning, checkup, or whitening treatment!

Buyer Beware!

In our office we trust and use Ultradent products:   Opalescence whitening gel for our customize trays;  Boost In-office whitening material for our “Power whitening;” and Opal-Go trays for disposable trays.  Nowadays the internet has made everything so convenient to order anything these days via sites like Amazon.com (who doesn’t love AmazonPrime?!?).  You really can find almost anything there, and Ultradent products are no exception.  But be careful; as Ultradent ONLY sells to dental professionals in the United States, so what you might be buying, although it may look identical in packaging, may be buying something completely different.  Having spoken to Ultradent directly, their founder and CEO, Dan Fischer, DDS, released the following statement:

“It has come to our attention that Ultradent Opalescence tooth whitening gels and trays are being sold by third parties through online marketplaces such as ebay.com, Amazon.com, Sears.com, and Taobao.com.  We urge you not to purchase Opalescence tooth whitening products from these online marketplaces because we cannot guarantee their authenticity, shelf-life, or efficacy.  Ultradent only sells its Opalescence products directly to dental professionals in the United States.  Opalescence tooth whitening products sold by third parties through online marketplaces may have been tampered with, may be close to the end of their shelf-life, or may even be expired.  We have found that Opalescence tooth whitening products purchased from online marketplaces often do not contain the full amount of product or including only some parts of a larger kit.  Thus, while it may appear that these third parties are selling the products at a lower price, the item you actually receive may not include the entire product, may contain counterfeit or fraudulent product, may not contain complete instructions and accessories for safe and effective use, and/or may contain product that has lost its efficacy.”

Have any questions? Call us or let us know in the comments below. Thank you for reading our blog!



The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.


Photo credit:  

See What Invisalign® Can Do For Your Smile

IF YOU WANTED TO STRAIGHTEN your teeth back in the day, you really only had one option–traditional metal braces. Nowadays, our patients have a variety of different options when it comes to how they would like to have their teeth straightened and what is most convenient for them. At our office, we offer Invisalign®! 

Invisalign Treatment Provides Many Benefits

Not everyone is a good candidate for Invisalign, but if you are, it may be a great option to achieve your dream smile!

As the name implies, Invisalign trays are nearly invisible, allowing you to go throughout your daily activities with most people being unaware that you are undergoing orthodontic treatment! The aligners are custom-made for you, ensuring a perfect, comfortable fit.

Of course one of the best perks of choosing Invisalign is being able to eat whatever you want! Because you can take your aligners off while eating and drinking, you don’t have to worry about staying away from the foods that you love. Invisalign trays also don’t affect your oral hygiene routine like traditional braces do. You can brush and floss as you normally would!

You also won’t have to worry about getting used to metal brackets that may cut into your cheeks and lips at the beginning of treatment or during sporting events. With Invisalign, you don’t have to sacrifice comfort to get the smile you’ve always wanted.

As an Invisalign patient, you’ll generally have less office visits than those with traditional braces. So if you have a busy schedule but still want to improve your smile, Invisalign might be just the thing for you!

So many of our patients have had braces when they were kids and their teeth have all shifted since.  Sound familiar?!?!   Benefits for Invisalign are not strictly cosmetic either.  Sure, you’ll look great, but also better alignment of teeth allow for easier access to adequately clean and floss, which in turn makes you less prone to cavities and/or gum disease.  We offer complimentary Invisalign consultations, so give us a call to see if Invisalign can work for you!

Watch the video below to hear why Fred chose Invisalign over traditional braces.

Talk To Us About Invisalign

We want your treatment to reflect your unique smile, lifestyle and personality. Call us today to discuss any questions you might have about Invisalign! At our practice, we believe your smile deserves the very best.

Thank you for choosing our practice. We absolutely love our patients!


The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Washingtonian’s Top Dentist 2017

It’s official!!!  Washingtonian’s Top Dentist list has been published, and we feel so honored to have been listed amongst the elite in the area!

Just as the Washingtonian publishes Washington’s Top Doctors, local dentists are also surveyed to vote amongst their peers who they would recommend to treat their family and friends in all the dental specialities.  To be nominated by so many peers is truly a honor!

Check out Washingtonian’s latest March issue (p.112) !!!   To see the feature on Dr. Yu, flip to p. 141!


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Do Dental Fillings Last Forever?

YOU MAY BE SURPRISED TO LEARN that dental fillings don’t last forever! While they are extremely durable and can last years, there will come a time when they will have to be replaced.

We Check Your Fillings At Your Regular Visits

You may be wondering, “If fillings don’t last a lifetime, then how long DO they last?” That depends on a number of factors, such as the type of procedure performed, the size or area being treated or replaced, the kind of materials used for the filling and the patient’s level of oral hygiene and care.

At your six-month appointment, we will check your fillings and make sure they are still intact. We will look for early signs of wear and tear so we can replace a dental restoration before it breaks, loses its effectiveness or falls out on its own. We also take x-rays to make sure there is no decay under or around a filling, which can cause it to come loose.

We’re Here For You In An Emergency

Despite your best efforts, a filling may crack or fall out unexpectedly. This is unlikely to occur if you visit your dentist regularly, however accidents can happen. Over time, dental fillings can be weakened by:

  • Tooth decay
  • Frequent jaw clenching and teeth grinding (bruxism)
  • Chewing on hard items or foods
  • Injury or trauma, such as those sustained during sports activities
  • Time; no filling lasts forever no matter how well kept

Although the following video discusses tooth loss, the same principals apply for a lost filling!

If you ever have a filling fall out just remember, don’t panic and don’t wait. Even if it falls out after hours, call us immediately–we’re here for you in an emergency! We will get you in as quickly as we can. In the meantime, keep your filling if you can but don’t try to push it back into place. Make sure to keep the affected area clean and debris-free.

If you don’t experience any pain after losing a filling, it’s still important to come in as soon as possible to have it treated. Not seeking immediate care could result in pain, discomfort and even tooth loss.

Call Us Anytime, Day Or Night

Regular dental visits are imperative to maintaining a healthy smile. With that being said, we know not every dental emergency happens during normal business hours. That’s why we strive to make ourselves available to our patients as often as possible. If you need us, call us! Your health and comfort is our number one priority.

Thank you for reading our blog and supporting our practice!



The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

4 Tips For A Younger Looking Smile

THERE ARE COUNTLESS methods we use to try and turn back the clock on our appearance. Whether it’s hip wardrobes and hairstyles or costly cosmetic surgeries, people go to great lengths to recapture the look and feeling of their youth.

Despite all of these anti-aging fads and gimmicks, studies show your smile can do more to make you look younger than anything else!

Good Oral Hygiene Keeps Your Smile Looking Younger, Longer

The simplest thing you can do to keep Father Time at bay is to practice good oral hygiene habits. Brushing twice a day and flossing regularly promotes healthy teeth and gums and keeps your smile looking and feeling clean. If we ignore these simple habits, we put our smiles at risk of harmful bacteria which can lead to unsightly effects such as:

  • Cavities,
  • Tooth discoloration or tooth loss,
  • And periodontal disease.

Maintaining good oral health throughout your life doesn’t just preserve the appearance of your smile, but it can preserve your overall health too. Bleeding gums caused by periodontal disease can allow bacteria from your mouth to enter your bloodstream and affect other parts of the body. Research suggests gum disease can increase our risk for serious health problems, including…

  • Diabetes
  • Endocarditis and cardiovascular disease
  • Osteoporosis
  • Strokes
  • Alzheimer’s Disease

For a few tips on how to floss properly to fight off that harmful bacteria, check out the video below!

Brighten Your Smile With Professional Tooth Whitening

Even when you take good care of your teeth, over time they naturally yellow. Micro-fractures, thinning enamel, and built-up stains all make your teeth look duller and older. But, that can be changed with tooth whitening!

There are several tooth whitening solutions, each with their own unique benefits. From over the counter whitening strips to in-office whitening treatments, we can help you decide which whitening solution is best for your smile.

Cosmetic Dentistry Can Give You The Look You Want

Whether you need just few touch-ups or would like an amazing dental makeover, cosmetic dentistry can provide exactly the look you want. Cosmetic dentistry has both therapeutic and aesthetic benefits. Treatment can repair your teeth and correct your bite, and at the same time give you the gorgeous smile you’ve always wanted!

Be Confident In Your Smile

One of the best ways to appear more youthful is to smile more! This can start a wonderful cycle too! Smiling more can actually make you happier, and make you want to smile more.

We love our patients and love seeing your bright shining smiles each day. If you have any questions about how we can give you a healthier, more beautiful smile, give us a call and set an appointment to visit our practice or let us know in the comments below!

Thank you for brightening our day! 🙂 🙂 🙂



The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

New Year, New Resolutions!

HAPPY NEW YEAR to all of our wonderful patients, fans, and friends!

Here at Avant Dentistry, we’re excited for 2017 and we wanted to take a moment to share our new year’s resolutions with you. Also, we’d love to hear YOUR resolutions too!

Here Are Some Of OUR Resolutions


Like most years, my greatest New Year’s resolution is to lose weight and be healthier.  My biggest motivation are my children–not only so I may continue to provide and take care of them, but also to be a positive role model for them so they may also learn to live healthier lifestyles.   In addition to trying to eat healthier, I also plan on introducing some extra cardiovascular efforts like using the stairs on the metro versus using the escalator, and during my lunch break going for a quick walk around the neighborhood.

Dr. Yu:

Hmmm, my New Year’s resolutions…here are a few that come to mind:

  1.  Drink simpler coffee drinks.  I’ve always been a sucker for “frou-frou” drinks…caramel macchiatos, creme brulee lattes, and the like.  They’re just sooo tasty, which usually means they also carry a higher sugar content, aka a lot of wasted calories.  Since I’m also a foodie, I’d much rather save those calories for some delicious food and actual dessert 😉
  2. Since the Michelin guide came to Washington, DC this past fall, there are a number of awarded restaurants I’ve been dying to try.  So the plan is to try as many of them as I can…which is even more motivation to cut out those “frou frou” drinks 😉
  3. Improve my posture.  Neck and back problems are pretty common among dentists.  And recently, I’ve definitely noticed my posture has declined over the past years, and I’m hoping to counteract the effects by increasing my core strength with simple core strength exercises, pilates, and barre classes.
  4. Complete my Mastership in the Academy of General Dentistry (MAGD), something less than 1% of all dentist ever achieve!
  5. We lost a lot of wonderful people too soon in 2016 – in addition to the well-known celebrities which we will definitely miss, we also lost some close friends and colleagues.  We never know when it will be our time; so I’m simply reminded to embrace life, appreciate the people we have in our lives (and tell them often), and just be thankful!

Need a bit of help keeping your New Year’s resolution? Check out the video below!

Now Share YOUR Resolutions With Us!

So, now that you know OUR resolutions, what are YOURS? Let us know by leaving a comment below.

Happy New Year!

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

We’ve been ANIMATED!!! Check out our new video!

We were looking for a fun & unique way to illustrate how Avant Dentistry is different than any another dental office.  And we thought what better way than an animated video!  It was a fun process, for sure; still cannot believe we got it down to 90-seconds!

We’re really proud of how it turned out!  We’d love to hear what you think?!?!


The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Ready For Winter Fun? Our Team Is!

WHETHER YOU LIVE IN a winter wonderland or enjoy warm weather and sunshine year-round, every region has something unique to offer during the winter months.

Today, Avant Dentistry’s team would like to share what some of our favorite ways to pass the time this time of year!

Our Team’s Favorite Winter Activities

From Vermelle:

“I have so many wintery favorites….I love seeing all the festive lights and listening to Christmas carols–it definitely puts my entire family in the mood for the Christmas holiday!  But my all-time favorite activity this time of year is decorating, especially baking (cookies) with my kids 🙂 ”

From Dr. Yu:

“Winter-time to me means skiing (hopefully somewhere out west)!  Skiing with my brothers is one of my favorite childhood past-times, and I am so fortunate that I get to continue that tradition with them, and now with my little nephews!  Christmas time is my favorite time of year…I love everything about it:  the decorations, the lights, the music, the cool brisk air, bundling up in warm scarves and gloves, drinking hot chocolate, singing (mostly harmonizing) Christmas carols, baking Christmas gingerbread cookies, watching feel-good Christmas movies, wrapping Christmas gifts (and spoiling my nephews rotten of course!), then watching their excitement on Christmas morning, cooking dinner with my family, and if I’m super lucky, Christmas is topped off with pretty, light and fluffy snow 😉 “

Upcoming Events

Still looking for gift ideas for that “hard to shop for person”?!?!  Everyone loves the gift of a whiter smile!  We are running our $99 Whitening Special for 10 sets of professional strength disposable trays!  They make great stocking stuffers too! May your holidays (and smile!) always be bright!

We are soon (start of 2017) to launch an in-office Photobooth campaign, which appeals to our team’s fun side!  For the cherry on top, everyone that participates is entered into a raffle to win Apple’s newest iPad mini 2!!!   How to enter???       4 Simple steps:

  1.  Take a photo in our office photobooth (optional props provided)
  2.  Post it on your Facebook
  3.  Tag our office, and
  4.  Just make sure your post is “public,” so we can be sure to enter you into the raffle.

Easy, right?!!? We’ll announce the winner on Facebook!  Join us in the fun…. bring on 2017!!!

We love winter as much as these fuzzy little guys!

What Are YOUR Favorite Activities This Time Of Year?

We’ve had a lot of fun sharing our favorite winter activities, now we want to hear from you! Share your favorite ways to pass the time this time of year in the comments below or let us know on social media!

Thank you for making this the most wonderful time of the year!


The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Your Frequently Asked Questions Answered!

WANT TO KNOW what our patients have been asking us? Here are the top five frequently asked questions we get at our practice!

#1: “How often do I actually need to visit the dentist?”

For most people, twice a year. Even if you do have perfect oral hygiene, plaque and tartar buildup are inevitable. With a professional cleaning every six months, your teeth will stay clean and healthy. We can also catch problems early at your biannual appointments, often saving you time, pain and money!

If your dentist wants you to come in more than twice a year, it may be because you have gum disease, are pregnant, or smoke, among other things. How often you need to make a dental visit is based on the health of your gums as well as how committed you are to a good oral hygiene program.

#2: “My tooth doesn’t hurt so I why do I need a filling?”

A cavity forms when bacteria in plaque produce acids that eat away at your tooth. It will usually not hurt at the beginning stages since it is only harming the protective outer layer of the tooth called the enamel. If a cavity is left untreated, the decay will reach the inner layers of the tooth, finally causing pain and sensitivity.

Most dental problems don’t have any symptoms until they reach a more advanced stage. That’s why it’s important for you to come in every six months–we can catch problems before you even begin feeling them!

#3: “What can I do about tooth sensitivity?”

Start by using desensitizing toothpastes, which are specially formulated to soothe the nerve endings in the tooth and reduce pain.  Potassium nitrate is the common ingredient contained in these toothpastes.  You can also help by limiting acidic foods and drinks which eat away at your tooth enamel over time, causing sensitivity.  In addition, don’t brush too aggressively, and avoid abrasive toothpastes, such as “whitening toothpastes.”  This can cause gum recession (and sometime even “notching” in your teeth!), which is a frequent cause of sensitive teeth.  If these steps do not help, come in to see us! There are other in-office treatments we can provide to reduce sensitivity.

#4: “Why are my teeth getting more yellow?”

A darkening or yellowing of the teeth is inevitable over time, as this occurs naturally with age. However, trauma and certain lifestyle behaviors can contribute to tooth discoloration. The most common culprits for surface stains are cigarettes, wine, coffee, tea, cola, sports drinks, berries, hard candy and tomato sauce. If your smile has lost its sparkle, talk to us about the whitening options we provide in our office!

#5: “Should I be using an electric or manual toothbrush?”

While an electric toothbrush can help patients with limited dexterity ensure a better cleaning, a manual toothbrush, if used for the appropriate amount of time and done with proper technique, can perform just as well as a powered toothbrush.   Certain features may attract you to an electric toothbrush, however, such as the ability to gauge pressure or a built-in timer.  But it is important to remember that NOT all electric toothbrushes are the same, and if used improperly can cause more damage.  We personally like the Oral B Pro5000 Smart Series because not only does it have a timer, the ability to synchronize to a Bluetooth app to monitor your routine, but most importantly the lighted pressure sensor, which alerts you when you are brushing too hard.

We’re also often asked about wisdom teeth! Check out the video below to learn more:

We Love It When Our Patients Ask Questions!

The more educated you are about your teeth and mouth, the better you will feel about going to the dentist and making decisions for your oral health. Have any more questions?  Call us or come in today!

Seeing our patients smile is what we live for!

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.