Desert Smiles Blog

Glendale Dentist Serving Phoenix, Scottsdale, Peoria, and nearby areas in Arizona

December 30th, 2016

Recent research from John Hopkins University School of Medicine has shown a bacterium that causes inflammatory gum infections also triggers the inflammatory autoimmune response characteristic of chronic, joint-destroying rheumatoid arthritis (RA).  These findings have significant implications for the prevention and treatment of RA, and add to the mounting evidence that controlling oral bacteria levels is critical not only to oral health but systemic health as well.

"This research may be the closest we've come to uncovering the root cause of RA," said firtst author Maximilian Konig, MD.  The study was puclished by Science Translational Medicine.  At our Glendale dental office our professional hygiene staff is well versed in the oral systemic connection and offer innovative non-surgical solutions such as Perio Protect Trays. For the finest in preventive dentistry, cosmetic dentistry and implant dentistry in Glendale and Phoenix, visit for more information.

December 16th, 2016

Phoenix dentist Dr. Donald Wilcox participated last weekend in the Az Dental Association sponsored Mission of Mercy at Veterans Coloseum.  Dr. Wilcox provided free restorative dental treatment to a number of recipients, many of whom had camped out at the coloseum overnight or longer to receive much needed care.  This is the 5th year Dr. Wilcox has given back to our community in this manner.  Dr. Wilcox looks forward to next year to continue supporting this worthwhile venture in addition to providing charity care to needy individuals at our Glendale dental office.  For the finest in cosmetic dentistry, sleep dentistry, or dental implants for patients in Phoenix and Glendale, visit for more information.

November 28th, 2016

There are two primary options in dentistry today to replace a single missing tooth.  A traditional fixed bridge requires a crown to be placed on each tooth adjacent to the missing tooth with a fake replacement tooth connecting the two crowns.  The other option is a dental implant that eliminates the need to restore adjacent teeth.  A man-made root is placed in the bone in the area of the missing tooth.  Once healed a crown can be attacted to the implant to restore the missing tooth.  Above you can see the actual crown seated in the patient's mouth along with an xray showing the implant that was placed in the bone to support the crown.  This created the most natural replacement of a missing tooth possible in dentistry today.  At our Glendale dental office we perform many implant replacements for patients from Phoenix and Glendale.  For more information regarding implant dentistry visit  For a complimentary consult regarding cosmetic dentistry, implant or sleep dentistry call DesertSmiles at 602-978-1790.

November 26th, 2016

An October 2016 article in the Washington Post: "Does Gum Disease have a link to cancer, dementia, stroke?  One quote in particular from this article bears repeating: "While not definitive, the links between gum disease and diabetes, at-risk pregnancy, heart disease and stroke have been so consistent that some insurers offer extra preventive periodontal care a little or no cost to people with those conditions."  The article goes on to state that treating gum disease resulted in lower medical costs, per the American Journal of Preventive Medicine in 2014.

The Post article's focus is on the oral biofilm.  Offices which test for oral pathogens for periodontal patients as we do at DesertSmiles, realize the important role these bacteria hold in the initiation and progression of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, adverse pregnancy events, and a host of other systemic conditions. Dr. Robert Genco, from the Forsyth Institute was quoted "There is a complex microbiome, some of which seems to come from the mouth, in the fatty tissue of the heart walls where cholesterol and heart disease fester."  This chronic and transient oral bacteria in the bloodstream contribute to artherosclerosis and can lead to heart attacks and strokes.

Increasing the awareness of the mouth-body connection is what we do daily at our Glendale dental office with our professional dental hygiene staff.  We provide the finest in preventive and non surgical periodontal care including oral bacteria testing, antibiotic therapy, laser therapy and perio protect trays.  For the finest in cosmetic dentistry, sleep dentistry or dental implants for patients in Phoenix and Glendale, visit for more information or call 602-978-1790.

November 20th, 2016

At our Glendale dental office our professional hygiene staff is passionate about providing the very best in preventive dentistry for our Phoenix and Peoria patients.  Part of that passion is keeping up with the latest in medical literature which continues to link oral bacteria to medical condiditons such as heart disease, diabetes, and pregnancy.


The oral bacteria change whan a women becomes pregnant, and levels of periodontal bacteria increase.  Often during pregnancy, gum inflammation worsens due to increased levels of certain oral bacteria.  Not all but some studies show there is an increased risk of infection to both the placenta and the blood of the mother.  Either can lead to an increase in pre-term labor and lower birth weight in some cases.  Other studies have shown the long term risk for systemic health concerns in mothers with periodontal disease can lead to progression of atherosclerosis and the increased risk of venous thrombosis.


For a complete periodontal evaluation especially if you have a history of bleeding gums or you are pregnant, call602-978-1790.  For the finest in preventive and cosmetic dentistry, or sleep dentistry in Phoenix and Glendale visit for more information.

November 01st, 2016

A root canal, also known as endodontic therapy, is a treatment designed to save a tooth that has nerve damage due to excessive decay or from a traumatic-related blow to the tooth. Because the symptoms mimic those of other conditions, you may not realize that your tooth’s nerve is damaged and in need of removal. We recommend viewing our slideshare for a guide to root canals. It may help you recognize the signs that you need the procedure and also help you know what to expect during treatment.

If you believe you may need a root canal, contact Desert Smiles Cosmetic & Restorative Dentistry at602-978-1790to schedule a consultation. We proudly serve those who live in and near Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Peoria, Arizona.

October 23rd, 2016


Phoenix dentist Dr Donald Wilcox and his professional hygiene staff seek to provide the last in preventive periodontal treatment to patients from Glendale, Phoenix and many other parts of the valley.  The last few years the medical and dental literature is on fire regarding the "Oral Systemic Connection".  In simpler terms, oral bacteria are being implicated in numerous medical conditions and the medical community is becoming much more aware that the mouth is not separate from the rest of the body.  Some medical practitioners are testing oral saliva for bacteria levels as part of their diagnostic care.  Recent studies have also shown patients with healthy periodontal tissues have 22% less medical costs.

More than 70 international experts from The American Academy of Periodontology and the European Federation of Periodontology conducted an intense review of the available evidence supporting the association between periodontal disease and other systemic diseases.  The consensus report concluded:

*There is strong evidence that periodontal disease provides an increase risk for future cardiovascular disease.

*There is an independent association between moderate to severe periodontal disease and an increase risk for the development or progression of diabetes.

*An association between maternal periodontal disease and adverse pregnancy outcomes such as low birth weight.

*Evidence suggests a relationship between periodontal disease and COPD, pneumonia, kidney disease, rheumatoid arthritis, cognitive impairment, metabolic syndrome and cancers.

In conclusion, there is a strong association between periodontal disease and conditions affecting many of the body's other systems.

To get a periodontal assessment contact DesertSmiles to one of our outstanding and well trained hygienists.  Your health could be dependent upon now or in the future.  Visit for more information.

September 27th, 2016

Implant dentistry mini infographic

Experienced dentist Dr. Donald Wilcox wants you to find an ideal tooth replacement. Dental implants are the longest-lasting, most durable and secure option for many of our patients. But that doesn't mean it's right for everyone. When you meet with Dr. Wilcox in your one-on-one consultation, you and he can discuss all aspects of your implant dentistry candidacy. If you aren't sure what to ask about, here are some example questions:

  • Am I a good candidate for dental implants?
  • Are there other tooth replacement options I should consider?
  • What is the procedure like?
  • How should I get ready for the procedure?
  • How long does it take?
  • How long do dental implants last?
  • How do I clean and care for my dental implants?
  • What are the most common complications and reasons for failure?
  • How do I prevent problems?
  • How much do they cost?
  • Do you offer financing for dental implants?

Dr. Wilcox also offers dentures and dental bridges, which are also great options for tooth replacement. He'll go over the pros and cons of each, and help you make a final decision. We are personally committed to restoring the comfort, function and appearance of your teeth, and providing you with a great smile you will be proud of.

To schedule a consultation with Dr. Wilcox in Glendale, AZ, please call Desert Smiles at 602-978-1790.

September 15th, 2016

Dental implants are a great option for those with missing teeth. Not only do they restore your beautiful smile but they contribute to good oral health while helping to prevent against future problems. Here at Desert Smiles, experienced cosmetic dentist Dr. Donald Wilcox works with you to determine the best course to give you a long-lasting healthy smile.

If you live in the Phoenix, Scottsdale, Glendale, or Peoria areas and want to learn more about dental implants, schedule a visit at Desert Smiles by calling 602-978-1790.

August 31st, 2016
Reasons you may need a Phoenix dental crown

Dental crowns are a type of dental "restoration." They restore teeth that are weak or damaged. Today's tooth crowns look more natural than ever before while also retaining strength and durability.

Some of the most common reasons for needing a tooth crown are:

  • To fill a large, advanced cavity that is too big to be treated with a dental filling
  • To restore a broken, fractured or otherwise damaged tooth
  • To restore a tooth that has been treated with root canal therapy
  • As part of a dental bridge to replace missing teeth
  • As part of a dental implant to replace missing teeth

If you think you may need a tooth crown, the only way to know for sure is to visit experienced dentist Dr. Donald Wilcox. As a first-time guest at our practice, you and Dr. Wilcox will discuss your dental health history and review your options for rejuvenating your smile. Dr. Wilcox will not only determine if you need a dental crown; he will also inform you of all of your treatment options so you can choose the one that works for you.

If you are interested in dental crowns to restore your smile, please call experienced Glendale dentist Dr. Donald Wilcox, at 602-978-1790. Our experienced staff will arrange a consultation for you at our Phoenix-area practice.