Kantor Dental Group

Should I Remove Silver Fillings (Amalgam)?


Dr. Greg Kantor here with Kantor Dental Group in San Rafael, California. Today I want to talk about whether or not you should get your silver fillings, amalgam fillings removed.

This is a question I get all the time. People don’t like the look of them. They are worried about the mercury intake. So, I’ll give you my opinion on, on the subject.

One is that silver values are a very good filling material. They last a long time. They have very low rates of recurrent decay. But, they do look bad. Right? They’re silver, they’re you know, when you laugh or open your mouth, you might see the silver fillings in your smile. So that’s one reason to get, change them out. If it’s something that you just, you see in pictures, you really don’t like it. Aesthetically, it may be the right choice for you.

As far as the mercury is concerned, it’s my opinion it’s a very low rate of mercury, very little mercury. Compounding effects, such as, say you have a lot of tuna and a lot of silver fillings. Maybe that worries you and you want to take it out. But let’s go over the mercury in silver fillings and why that’s… it’s just not that big of a deal. In that the mercury in tuna is connected to something like this, like an organic molecule. So, if you look here, you have these organic compounds surrounding the HG with HG being the mercury. So, this molecule from tuna, this is one of the many that comes from tuna. It’s easily absorb because our body attaches to these organic molecules very readily. So, then you absorb the mercury with it. With silver fillings, the elemental mercury, it’s just the mercury by itself. Right. It’s all by itself. Our body does not absorb it at all. It’s very, very little. So, you’re getting almost no exposure to mercury from a silver filling. It just comes out in your excretion.

For that reason, I don’t think it’s a huge intake of mercury as compared to having a lot of fish, large fish like tuna.

If you don’t like the aesthetics or worrying about the stacking effects of having a lot of tuna and silver fillings and other fishes and want to reduce your mercury intake. Those are kind of the two main reasons to get them replaced. If you don’t worry, if you’re not worried about the aesthetics and you don’t eat that much fish, you know, it’s a great fill-in material. It can last you long time.

Here at Kantar Dental Group, we do not place silver fillings. However, we do use dual-suction and we have a mercury, amalgam separator in our vacuum unit to make sure that we keep it separated from the environment as well as separated from your, your intestines when we take it out.

If you have any other questions, feel free to come into our office. We’re Kantor Dental Group in San Rafael, California. Please subscribe.

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Should You Save Or Remove A Badly Infected Tooth


Hello, I’m Dr. Grey Kantor here with Kantor Dental Group in San Rafael California. Today, I want to talk about root canal. Whether to use a root canal to save a tooth or decide to lose a tooth and do an implant.

If you’re thinking about this decision, your heads in the right place. This is the exact line of thought you should be thinking whether or not to save the tooth. Something you need to take the advice of your provider. They could assess the amount of damage has been done to the tooth. Best to go over with you, whether it’s worth doing the root canal or if it’s better and more long term to just go to an implant.

I’ll Give you some examples. Behind me, this patient has a tooth right here. If I make it a little bit bigger. If you look right here, there’s a dark area here that starts to get it close to the root canal. That is the minimum size of something we might do a root canal on. Something I would definitely do a root canal on. I would not consider doing an implant there. That is a great looking tooth. I love everything about that tooth except for the really large cavity. So, a prime candidate for a root canal.

Now On the other hand, on the same patient. They had two fillings, two big, big fillings down here. One down here, one up here and you can see this filling, it kind of spreads out quite a bit right here. It’s… in the dark area around this filling, the filling is the white part, the dark area is the root canal. The filling in this, this one is so big, that when we prepare for a crown it may not be strong enough to handle a load of chewing. Especially on a tooth like that. That would be a tooth, or maybe the one above it up here with this other very large filling that needs a root canal. It may be a tooth where the longevity might not be worth it to do the root canal. You’ll get better longevity from a tooth, from an implant tooth.

So, that’s basically the line of thought that I like to do. Considering a root canal, build up, post, crown can get close to the cost of an implant. In conclusion, it’s just best to go with what your dentist sees. This is something only really gained by experience, seeing it all the time. Knowing which they think will last longer. I would just talk to your dentist about it and see what they have to say. If you want to come into our office, were welcome to go out with you. We’re located in San Rafael California.

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What Is the Best Way to Care for Your Dentures?

Proper denture care is vital in order to keep your dentures looking their best. Not only can poor denture care cause stains and damage, but it can also even introduce dangerous bacteria to your mouth. If you don’t clean and handle dentures properly, they won’t last as long– and you won’t look your best. The following are key tips on the best way to care for your dentures:


  • Handle dentures gently. Don’t bend the plastic, and make sure not to damage the clasps when removing or cleaning dentures. Also, be aware that dentures may be slippery, as they are often wet. It may be a good idea to put a towel down in the sink in case you drop your dentures to prevent them from breaking.
  • Rinse your dentures after you eat.Food particles should be removed from your dentures as quickly as possible to avoid staining and damage. Simply remove and gently rinse your dentures in cold water after each meal or snack, and then put them back in.
  • Brush your dentures with a specialized denture brush daily. Rinsing your dentures isn’t enough to get them truly clean. This requires a more in-depth brushing. Use a denture brush– not a toothbrush!– and a denture cleaner to remove food, plaque, and other build-up from the dentures on a daily basis before it has a chance to get stuck to the surface.
  • Carefully remove all the adhesive on a daily basis.If you use a denture adhesive, pay extra attention to the the grooves that fit against your gums when brushing your dentures. You need to remove all remaining adhesive every day or the buildup will make your dentures fit poorly over time.
  • Use only a non-abrasive cleaner and cool water on dentures. Whitening toothpaste, products containing bleach, and other abrasive cleaners may sound like a great way to remove stains, but they erode the denture material. Instead, use a gentle cleanser formulated specifically for dentures. Also, be careful not to use hot water when cleaning dentures. The high temperatures can warp the shape!
  • Clean your mouth twice a day after removing your dentures. Whether you have remaining natural teeth left or not, you need to gently brush your gums, your tongue, your inner cheeks, and the roof your mouth every day. This removes plaque-causing bacteria that could damage dentures and keeps your mouth healthy.
  • Soak your dentures when you remove them overnight. Almost all dentures need to retain moisture to keep their shape. This requires soaking them in water or a mild denture solution overnight. Talk to your dentist about the best method of storing your particular dentures when you are not wearing them.
  • See your dentist regularly, especially if you see damage or are experiencing fit issues. Regular dental check-ups ensure that your dentures stay in the best condition possible and last longer. Your dentist will examine for preventable future issues and professionally clean areas you can’t get spotless. If you have problems with your dentures, don’t wait until your next scheduled appointment to see your dentist. Small damage can quickly become much worse without immediate attention, and poorly fitting dentures can cause irritation, mouth sores, and infection.

It may sound like a lot, but taking the time to follow the best way to care for your dentures is worth the effort. Proper denture care ensures that your dentures last longer and look better, saving you money and making you feel more confident.

How To Brush A Toddler’s Teeth?


I’m Dr. Grey Kantor here with Kantor Dental Group and my son Isaac. And we’re going to talk to you today about flossing. Well, brushing toddler’s teeth. Right now, he’s flossing, so this is good. It’s good just to let him play with the floss. See, we’re using Cocofloss, which is really good floss. Oh, what’s that? That was good flossing. Are you ready to brush? Oh, see he’s not ready to brush. This is perfect video when they don’t want a brush.

OK, let’s brush your teeth then, ok? We’re done, take this out. Take this out. OH, oh my gosh! Oh, he’s a tiger! Ok, good job. Ok, brush your teeth. Open, say ‘Ah’. Want to…what do you want to sing? ABC’s? A B C D E F G. So you go around from tooth to tooth. H I J K L M M O P. When you do the back of the front you turn it down like this. And when you do the back to the bottom do you turn it up like this. Now the hard part is always getting them the teeth because they tighten their lips. There we go. You got to get the front of the teeth, all the way down to the gums. Up at the top. Oh, good job. Okay, spit. Big spit!

A B C D… the SoniCare toothbrushes really good for the kids. That way they can kind of move their head around and can they do it themselves. A B C D E F G H I J K L M O P. Okay, let’s go spit! Good job. All right.

And then, you get the very back of the back teeth. Don’t go too far back because kids have a strong gag reflex. And the strong gag reflex, uh, they will actually throw up. I’ve done before, so you don’t, you want to make sure you just getting to the back of the last tooth. And then you say, “All done!” Are you all done? Ok, one last spit. And then you say thank you. Please subscribe. Okay bye-bye.

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Is Teeth Whitening Safe For Me?


Hello, I’m Dr. Grey Kantor here with Kantor Dental Group in San Rafael, California.

Today, I want to talk about whether or not whitening your teeth is safe. A lot of people ask me this question namely because they may have had sensitivity in their whitening treatment previously.

The quick answer is yes. Whitening at the dental office is very safe. We use either carbohydrate peroxide or hydrogen peroxide to whiten teeth. Different levels depending on different percentages, depending on the type of treatment we do. Whether at home or at the office; in the office being a much higher percentage.

We do it in a safe manner where it may make the teeth sensitive, but it will be a transient sensitivity. So, not to worry. Nothing will hurt your teeth. They’ll just look whiter. If the sensitivities too much, please just use ibuprofen to reduce the sensitivity. But again, it should only last a couple days.

If you have any more questions about teeth whitening or how to make your smile brighter. Give us a call here at Kantor Dental Group in San Rafael, California. Aesthetic dentistry and implantology, please subscribe.

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Are Silver Fillings Harming Your Health and What Can Be Done to Replace Them?

You may have heard recently on the news or social media that silver fillings can be toxic. With all the misinformation out there, it’s easy to feel worried and confused. That’s why you need the truth from a source you can trust. Are silver fillings harming your health? If so, what can you do about it?


Unfortunately, silver fillings have a potential danger. You see, the term “silver filling” is a misnomer. Silver fillings are made of more than just silver. They are actually an amalgam or combination of several metals, as well as silver. Most silver amalgam fillings also contain copper and tin– and even mercury.


Mercury is a metal that is toxic if the body absorbs to too much. Mercury builds up in the body and damages organs such as your kidneys and your brain and eventually contributes to neurodegenerative conditions like Alzheimer’s disease and multiple sclerosis. As silver fillings experience wear from everyday activities like chewing, the mercury is released in vapor form, which could be absorbed by the body.


How much mercury vapor is actually absorbed? Probably very little. Mercury in fillings is in pure metal form. Unlike mercury absorbed from consuming fish, mercury in fillings have no organic molecules that make it easy for the body to take in. That’s why American Dental Association and the FDA still certify silver fillings as a safe option for patients over the age of 6.


Why Is Mercury Even Used In Silver Fillings If It’s Potentially Harmful to Your Health?


Dentists didn’t always know that the mercury in silver fillings could ever be harmful because mercury itself isn’t dangerous unless it is absorbed into the body. For many years, the medical community assumed that fillings remained a mix of metals, preventing the mercury from being released. Since the mix of metals made a stable, long-lasting, and durable filling, dentists used it as a common treatment after removing cavities. They believed that the silver fillings were completely risk-free.


Recent research, however, indicates that that silver fillings don’t stay a completely stable mix. Small amounts of mercury are released as vapor over time, which is why some people worry that silver fillings can be toxic. While the American Dental Association emphasizes that this amount is generally low enough not to cause toxicity, any damage to the filling could speed up the release of toxic mercury.


Should I Replace My Silver Fillings?


Ultimately, most dentists don’t think you are at significant risk due to your silver fillings. If you feel uncomfortable with any mercury risk, however, even a low one, you can have them removed. Your peace of mind and confidence in your medical decisions are ultimately most important.


If you are uncomfortable with the risks of silver amalgam or simply don’t like their ugly color, there are other options. Porcelain and composite fillings have been created that are just as stable as silver fillings, but without the potential mercury risks. In fact, you can have metal fillings removed and refilled with these options right away. The mercury released during replacement is minimized using a double-suction isolation technique. This process significantly reduces ingestion, as well as the amount of mercury released into the environment.


Of course, no one should have their fillings removed without careful consideration and consultation with a trusted dentist. Sometimes the removal can damage your teeth. An unskilled or inexperienced dentist could even release more mercury vapor during the removal process. The best course of action is to talk to a dentist with experience in non-toxic fillings to get a clear understanding of your options. Come talk to us at Kantor Dental to find out how what we suggest will be the safest course of action for you.

Are Root Canals Safe?

Hello, I’m Dr. Grey Kantor here in San Rafael, California with Kantor Dental Group. Aesthetic dentistry and implantology.

Today, I want to talk about root canals and whether or not root canals are safe? There’s been a lot of stuff I’ve seen on Facebook and some other articles people have been sending me, that have shown that root canals can be reinfected, may have recurring infections. And, a lot of people are wondering are root canals safe? Is there bacteria left in the environment of a root canal that can be dangerous to your health?

So, let’s bring up a situation. Say you had tooth like this one with a big dark abscess at the bottom of it. In this case, this tooth can’t be saved, but if, let’s say it could be saved and you’re in pain. Is it worth saving? Should I get it root canal treated or should I not? Is it worth root canal treating it, or should I just pull it? Those are some questions that might go through your head.

My first answer is that root canals are very safe. Root canals have a success rate of over 95%. So, that means about one in twenty may need to be treated due to a recurrent infection. Recurrent infections are usually visible. You can either feel them or you can see them in the X-ray. In general, they’re not subclinical. Meaning they’re not just an infection that secretly leading bacteria into your bloodstream.

The way we do root canals can help you understand how sterile the environment is. First of all we separated it with either a rubber dam or an Isolite. We separate that from the rest of the mouth. Then, we clean it with copious amounts of sodium hypochlorite, which is essentially bleach. This has to be done for a minimum of 15 minutes. That 15 minutes allows it to sterilize the inside of that tooth before we fill it up. And then, when we fill it up we seal it. We usually seal it with a resin composite just like a filling. And, put a crown over it. So, it is a very sealed environment with unlikely recurrent infection.

So, then the question may occur… should do a root canal or an implant? And I’ll do a separate video on that. But that is an excellent question whether the tooth is worth saving. In the case of this picture behind me, due to all that decay, the dark spot in the tooth. That proves that tooth is not worth saving.

If you have any questions about the root canal, you can definitely come into our office if you’re in the area. But, you could also ask your dentist to see if they believe that root canals are sterile and have a low rate of recurrent infection.

Thanks for watching this video I hope that was helpful. And this is Kantor Dental Group, aesthetic dentistry and implantology. Please subscribe.

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How Abrasive Is Your Toothpaste?

Whitening toothpaste has become incredibly popular in recent years. Many people automatically buy whitening toothpaste without giving it a second thought. Unfortunately, many whitening toothpastes can be quite abrasive. Just how abrasive is your toothpaste? In some cases, actually abrasive enough to do long-term damage to your teeth.

To whiten effectively, whitening toothpastes contain a small amount of a bleaching agent but a lot of silica. The purpose of the silica is to rub stains off the surface of teeth. Because of the short amount of time toothpaste actually stays on your teeth, this silica is actually doing most of the whitening work, not the bleaching agents. The more effectively toothpaste whitens, the more likely it is very abrasive.

Over time, this abrasiveness can wear off dangerous amounts of teeth enamel. In fact, over time, this makes your teeth vulnerable to plaque and bacteria. Many dentists caution against long-term use of whitening toothpastes for just this reason. You may already be feeling the effects of this abrasiveness if your teeth are feeling sensitive but you have no cavity. Come talk to us at Kantor Dental to find out how we can reduce the damage.

How Can I Find Out If My Toothpaste Is Too Abrasive?

So is your current toothpaste too abrasive? There’s a simple way to find out. When toothpastes come to market, they have to disclose how abrasive they are. This abrasiveness is measured by an RDA (Relative Dentin Abrasivity) Value, or the toothpaste’s ability to cut dentin (the layer of teeth below enamel).

In RDA terms, anything under 70 is considered to have low abrasivity and should be safe for long-term use. An RDA score between 70-150 means the toothpaste has a medium to high abrasivity and it’s use should be monitored by a dentist. Once your toothpaste’s RDA is over 150, the abrasivity is likely dangerous in the long-term and should only be used for short periods of time. According to the FDA, no toothpaste should exceed an RDA of 200. The American Dental Association places the top limit at 250.

You can find the RDA of many popular toothpastes in the chart below. Check to see where your toothpaste falls. If it is over 150, you may want to consider switching to a less abrasive toothpaste to avoid damaging your enamel.

Type of Toothpaste RDA
Toothbrush with plain water 04
Plain baking soda 07
Weleda Salt Toothpaste 15
Elmex Sensitive Plus 30
Weleda Plant Tooth Gel 30
Arm & Hammer Dental Care 35
Weleda Children’s Tooth Gel 40
Arm & Hammer Advance Whitening/ Peroxide 42
Squiggle Enamel Saver 44
Weleda Calendula Toothpaste 45
Weleda Pink Toothpaste with Ratanhia 45
Oxyfresh 45
Arm & Hammer Dental Care Sensitive 48
Tom’s of Maine Sensitive 49
Arm & Hammer Peroxicare Regular 52
Rembrandt Original 53
Closys 53
Arm & Hammer Dental Care PM Bold Mint 54
Tom’s of Maine Children’s 57
Supersmile 62
Rembrandt Mint 63
Colgate Regular 68
Colgate Total 70
Arm & Hammer Advance White Sensitive 70
Colgate 2-in-1 Fresh Mint 70
Biotene 78
Sensodyne 79
AIM 80
Close Up 80
Under the Gum 82
Colgate 2-in-1 Tartar Control/ Whitening 82
Colgate Sensitive Max Strength 83
Nature’s Gate 87
Aquafresh Sensitive 91
Tom’s of Maine 93
Rembrandt Plus 94
Oxyfresh with Fluoride 95
Crest Regular 95
Oxyfresh Powder 97
Natural White 101
Mentadent 103
Arm & Hammer Sensation 103
Sensodyne Extra Whitening 104
Colgate Platinum 106
Arm & Hammer Advance White 106
Crest Sensitivity Protection 107
Colgate Herbal 110
Amway Glister 110
Aquafresh Whitening 113
Arm & Hammer Advance White Gel 117
Arm & Hammer Sensation Tartar Control 117
Close Up with Baking Soda 120
Colgate Whitening 124
Crest Extra Whitening 130
Ultra Brite 133
Crest Multicare Whitening 144
Ultra Brite Advanced Whitening Formula 145
Pepsodent 150
Colgate Tartar Control 165
Arm & Hammer Dental Care PM Fresh Mints 178
FDA recommended upper limit 200
ADA recommended upper limit 250

Wisdom Teeth Recovery Tips


Hello, I’m Dr. Grey Kantor here with Kantor Dental Group. Here in San Rafael, California.

Today, I want to talk about what to expect after a wisdom tooth extraction or any extraction for that matter. Say you have a wisdom tooth, like this one right here. It’s tilted, it’s impacted, or it has cavities on it, or you’re getting it extracted for another reason. The most important thing to remember is to leave that area alone, or all four areas if you’re getting all four wisdom teeth taken out. You want to not touch the clot. There’s a clot being formed in the socket. That clogs delicate.

Things that can dislodge the clot are rinsing, swishing your mouth, that could dislodge the clot. Suction, things like straws or cigarettes – especially cigarettes will delay healing. Or, even small particle foods like popcorn or rice those can get caught in the clot and can make the healing slower. Staying away from those things will help if you’re a lot faster. So, that’s the number one thing to look out for.

Some things to expect are soreness. The dentist will most likely prescribe you a painkiller such as a hydrocodone, Vicodin, thing of that nature. If you don’t want that, taking a Tylenol together (if you can take it and are not allergic). Taking ibuprofen and acetaminophen together is a very powerful pain reliever and won’t give you that head change your dizziness things sometimes get with Vicodin.

The next thing to expect is, there is possibly some swelling and bruising in the area. Most likely you’ll see that the morning after. So, you’ll go to sleep at night and fluids are allowed to rush towards your head because you’re laying down and that will give you swelling in the morning. What you can do is either use a couple extra pillows so your heads above your heart. Or, in the morning, just sit up put some ice on it. The swelling will go down very quickly, not to worry about that. At our office, we also give you some ice to put on your face, so you can feel better right away.

The next thing to think about is bleeding. Bleeding can occur after the procedure, usually will be biting down on some gauze. But, the dentist will give you some extra gauze to bite down on. What you can do is, bite on that putting pressure on the wound to stop the bleeding. If the bleeding keeps kind of just oozing out slowly. It’s really easy to just put some green tea bags, a little tea bags, just grab that from your, from your cupboard, and bite down on that. And, that will help the bleeding stop as well.

One last thing that may happen, it usually doesn’t, is sometimes you’ll feel a little sharp edges. Like bony edges in your mouth, that’s actually pretty normal. Usually those will work themselves away. Your body will round those off or they’ll exfoliate if it’s a piece of some sort of piece of fragment or something. If the edge doesn’t go away and it starts to hurt or poking something like your tongue. Definitely go see your dentist right away. He or she can help you with that.

Another less likely thing to happen is jaw pain. A lot of times, taking out implants requires putting pressure on your jaw and your jaw might be sore afterward. Again, this is something you can ice. Ice is very helpful for and it should go away very shortly. If it doesn’t, again talk to your doctor about that.

Other than that, wisdom teeth extraction can go very normally. I know when I got my wisdom teeth taken out, I had almost no pain the next day. I was very sleepy.

Hopefully that’s some good information for those of you about to get your wisdom teeth taken out. If you live in the area along get more information please come to our office, Kantor Dental Group is San Rafael, California. And please subscribe, thank you.

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What are wisdom teeth and do I need them?

Odds are that you know a lot of people who have had their wisdom teeth removed. You may be wondering whether or not you’ll need to get your wisdom teeth out– and if it’s safe. So what are wisdom teeth? Do you need yours?


The reality is that wisdom teeth are a relic of when we ate more chewy foods. When our diets included sticks and other tough plants, our molars wore out faster. Wisdom teeth provided a replacement.


Nowadays, you don’t need wisdom teeth. Softer diets and better oral hygiene mean that our molars aren’t likely to wear out, so these replacements are redundant. In fact, wisdom teeth don’t really fit in our mouths. The average person’s mouth can only hold 28 teeth without overcrowding. Wisdom teeth make that number 32, which is why wisdom teeth often can cause bite problems, pain, and misalignment.


Should I Get My Wisdom Teeth Removed?


If you don’t need your wisdom teeth, does that mean they should be taken out? That really depends on your mouth. Some people can go their whole lives without any problems associated with their wisdom teeth. Unfortunately, many people do experience such issues, which is why you should visit your dentist regularly, especially in your teens and 20s (when wisdom teeth are growing in).


Your dentist will monitor the growth of your wisdom teeth for signs that they may be painful or problematic later in life. If they see potential issues, your dentist will recommend a surgery to remove your wisdom teeth. Some common reasons you may need to have your wisdom teeth removed include:


  • Impacted teeth: If there isn’t enough room for wisdom teeth to erupt through your gums, they can become impacted, which can hurt! Impacted teeth also can develop cysts, which do damage to other teeth and your jaw.
  • Irritated gums: When wisdom teeth grow in awkwardly, they can irritate your gums. This inflames the gums and makes them more susceptible to infection. This inflammation can ultimately make your wisdom teeth more prone to cavities, too.
  • Sinus pressure: If your wisdom teeth push against the jaw uncomfortably, this can cause sinus pressure and pain as you age.
  • Misaligned bite: Wisdom teeth usually don’t fit in your mouth well. This can mean that wisdom teeth won’t always erupt straight. This can push teeth out of the way, ultimately misaligning your entire bite. A misaligned bite isn’t just a cosmetic problem, either. It can cause uneven wear on teeth and pain.
  • Cavities:Wisdom teeth are so far back in the mouth that they are very hard to fill.  So a moderate size cavity may be enough to condemn the tooth.


If you are worried about your wisdom teeth, the best thing you can do is talk to a dentist. At Kantor Dental, we have helped thousands of patients make informed decisions about their wisdom teeth. Let us help you do the same.