Is Charcoal Toothpaste Safe?

Activated charcoal is now a featured ingredient in many commercially-available beauty and hygiene products. These include face wash, makeup, and even toothpaste with a claim that it increases the whitening effect. But does it actually work? Is charcoal actually an effective teeth whitening ingredient or is it merely a gimmick that can actually risk the health of your teeth? Chester Springs PA dentist Dr. Jason Petkevis of Dental Distinction and the American Dental Association have some advice for those who are curious about the potential problems of charcoal toothpaste.

Why Charcoal?

First let’s get some background on charcoal. Charcoal is a porous black solid form of carbon that is created from burning wood or other organic material. It’s better known for its’ uses in your barbeque rather than in health products. Charcoal is considered “activated” when it is burned again higher temperature, making it sticky. This sticky quality that activated charcoal has is a reason it is frequently used in modern medicine to absorb toxins in the stomach. But does activated charcoal actually work to draw out toxins or impurities such as stains in teeth?

Should I Use Charcoal Toothpaste?

The American Dental Association has found zero evidence that charcoal toothpaste is an effective whitener and it might, in fact, actually harm your gums and teeth.

Activated charcoal is abrasive in addition to sticky. This abrasiveness can remove the enamel (outer layer) of your tooth. So while the enamel is the part you want to whiten when you use a whitening toothpaste, using charcoal toothpaste can actually remove more than the stains it is meant to target. This erosion of your enamel can eventually expose a sensitive yellow layer of the tooth called dentin.

Modern toothpaste and toothbrushes are specially formulated to gently clean the surface of the teeth. Since teeth are more easily stained when the enamel is thinner, you don’t want something abrasive like charcoal scraping the precious enamel off your teeth.

Alternatives to Natural Whitening

The best way to naturally whiten your teeth is to stick to a healthy oral hygiene regimen that includes brushing your teeth twice a day with an American Dental Association-approved whitening toothpaste. Limiting your intake of colorful foods like coffee and red wine, and regularly visiting Dr. Petkevis’ office for cleanings and examinations are also important.

In-office teeth whitening procedures are available at Dental Distinction. These procedures can safely whiten your enamel without damaging it like charcoal toothpaste potentially can. Safe over-the-counter bleaching products are also available in your local drugstore or big box store with the ADA seal of approval- that means they have been deemed safe for teeth.

The most important part of your smile is that it’s a healthy one. If you’re not sure about which teeth whitening procedure is best for you, call 610.400.1459 or contact us online to schedule an appointment with Dr. Petkevis at Dental Distinction in Chester Springs today.

Posted in: oral hygiene

All About Teeth

June is oral health month, Chester Springs, PAOur teeth are an essential part of our bodies but how well do you know your set of pearly whites? They help you chew. They play an important role in forming the shape of your mouth and consequently your entire face. They are the building blocks of your smile which is what your use to make first impressions on others. Yet many of us don’t know which tooth is an incisor and which is a molar.

All About Teeth

We human beings have two separate sets of teeth in our lifetime: the primary teeth and the secondary teeth. The primary teeth are also known as your  “baby teeth”. This is because they begin growing in when we are only about six months old and are usually all in place by the time we reach three years of age. Our secondary teeth are also known as the “adult teeth”. These begin growing in as the primary teeth begin to fall out. This process usually happens between the ages of six and twelve years old. The average person usually has 32 secondary teeth but all teeth are not alike. Your teeth have different jobs based on their shapes and locations. You could think of them like the players on your favorite football team: each plays their own position but they work as a team to score points.

The Types of Teeth

  1. Incisors: These are the eight teeth in the very front of your mouth. We have four incisors on the bottom and four on top. Incisors are primarily used for biting off pieces of food.
  2. Canines: These sharp, pointed teeth are named after the fangs of a canine (dog) because of their appearance. People have four canine teeth, two on top and two on the bottom, one on either side of our incisors. Canines are used to rip and tear food much the way your dog uses his teeth.
  3. Bicuspids: These teeth, sometimes called premolars, are used for chewing and grinding foods. Our four bicuspids are located two on the top and two on the bottom, one on either side of the canine teeth.
  4. Molars: Our flat-topped molars are also used for chewing and grinding and grow at rear of your mouth, four on top and four on the bottom, two on each side. Your molars are located in an area that commonly experiences tooth decay due the fact that it can be difficult to clean teeth as thoroughly in the back of your mouth. Most people also grow third molars, more commonly referred to as “wisdom teeth” due to their relatively late arrival (late teens to early twenties). Four third molars can erupt, one each side, top and bottom. Wisdom teeth that fail to emerge are said to be impacted and require a surgical procedure to remove. These are also prone to tooth decay due to their location at the very rear of the mouth.
Now that you know your pearly whites a little better, you will be better able to communicate with Dr. Petkevis when you may be having a problem with them. For example, if you have pain in the upper rear left of your mouth when you chew, you can tell Dr. Petkevis that you may have an issue with one of your top left molars. The team is only as strong as its weakest player, so be sure to schedule regular cleanings and exams with Dr. Petkevis in Chester Springs PA to keep your team strong. To schedule call 610.400.1459 or request an appointment online.

Posted in: family dentist philadelphia area, General Dentistry, Oral Health, oral hygiene

Chew Your Way to a Healthier Smile

Tooth Decay and Sugar Free Gum, Chester Springs, PABelieve it or not, the right type of chewing gum can actually help your teeth stay healthy! The American Dental Association (ADA) has approved chewing gum as a tool to fight tooth decay. Of course, this should be sugar-free gum, but there are a few choices out there that are not only harmless but actually good for you. Talk to Dr. Jason Petkevis during your next visit to our Chester Springs PA office to find out exactly how chewing gum can keep your teeth healthy.


Chewing gum increases the flow of saliva in your mouth, which is particularly beneficial after eating. When we eat, cavity-creating particles can potentially be left behind on the teeth. Over time this could lead to plaque build-up in those places that are hard to reach with your toothbrush such as in the back of the mouth and between teeth. More saliva in the mouth helps wash away the food particles, and it also contributes more phosphate and calcium to the mouth to strengthen tooth enamel. Reducing the buildup of plaque on your teeth and building stronger enamel means fewer cavities!


Of course, a lot of chewing gum available on the market is loaded with sugar, which Dr. Petkevis does not recommend. Too much sugar feeds oral bacteria living on the plaque in your mouth, which increases the risk of cavities. If these bacteria are well-fed, they multiply faster, and the bacteria will eat away at tooth enamel and eventually create cavities. Avoiding sugar helps your teeth and your overall health, as well. Instead, you should choose a sugar-free gum that is ADA-approved. You can check the packaging for the ADA seal for this designation. Gums with this seal contain artificial sweeteners that do not contribute to cavities.  Doing this assures you that your chewing gum is sugar-free and actually beneficial to your oral health.


Chewing ADA-approved sugarless gum after eating has been clinically shown to help prevent tooth decay due to the increase of saliva flow to the mouth. However, chewing gum is only meant to be one tool of many to prevent tooth decay. Always brush your teeth at least twice daily, floss once at least once a day, and make regular appointments with your dentist. Chewing gum does not have to be harmful but it can’t replace these other very important steps in your oral hygiene routine! If you have any questions about your oral health, don’t hesitate to call 610.400.1459 or schedule an appointment online with Dr. Petkevis. It's suggested that you always consult with your dentist before starting any new dental regiment. Regular examinations and cleanings at your dental office are the best way to maintain your oral health and catch serious oral health issues early to avoid painful and complicated procedures.

Posted in: Chester Springs Family Dentist, family dentist philadelphia area, General Dentistry, Healthy Gums, Healthy Gums and Teeth, Oral Health

How Do I Manage My Dental Fear?

Do you suffer from dental fear or anxiety? Whether your dental fear stems from a past experience or a fear of losing control, our team at Dental Distinction can work with you to help you get the dental care you need. Dr. Jason Petkevis leads a team of highly trained, compassionate professionals. We work with you to ensure you are safe, comfortable, and relaxed throughout your treatment. Don't let dental fear be the reason you oral health suffers. In this blog post, we will discuss some simple ways to keep you relaxed during your dental visit. Visiting the dentist doesn't have to be scary if you are under the care of a trusted, experienced dentist; visit our Chester Springs, PA dental office for the dental care you need.

Tips For Managing Dental Fear

  • Bring a friend t0 help keep you relaxed during your dental visit. Bring a friend with you for moral support.
  • Don't be afraid to ask your dentist questions. If you want to know more about your treatment or the type of tools used, ask your dentist.
  • Sedation dentistry may be right for you. Sedation dentistry can be used to keep you relaxed and calm throughout your treatment. Sedation dentistry is also helpful for patients with a strong gas reflex or patients who need multiple procedures during one visit.
  • Try deep breathing techniques to help keep you relaxed. Try finding deep breathing techniques that work for you.
  • Try listening to music or an audiobook to take your mind off your procedure.
  • Ask your dentist if you can take a break when you start to feel anxious. Taking breaks may help you stay calm throughout your visit.

Schedule An Appointment

Visit our Chester Springs dental office for the dental care you need. Dr. Petkevis is a trusted, experienced dentist who is committed to improving your oral health.  To schedule an appointment, call or request an appointment online.

Posted in: Dental fear

What Do I Do If I Chipped My Tooth?

What do i do if i chipped my tooth chester springs pa Chipping a tooth is a common occurrence amongst patients of all ages. Some patients don't even realize they chipped a tooth until well after the tooth has been damaged. If you chip a tooth, it is imperative that you schedule a visit to our Chester Springs, PA dental office as soon as possible. The longer you wait to repair a chipped tooth, the more likely you will experience further tooth damage. In advanced cases, a chipped tooth may lead to an exposed nerve which may cause discomfort, pain, or tooth sensitivity. If applicable, patients should keep the chipped portion of the tooth and store it in a moist plastic bag. be sure to bring it with you to your appointment. Dr. Jason Petkevis is a family dentist in Chester Springs, Pennsylvania. Dr. Petkevis offers a full range of restore, general, and cosmetic dentistry services to address patients with chipped, fractured, and broken teeth. If you have a chipped tooth, visit our Chester Springs, PA dental office for the dental care you need. Dr. Petkevis can work with to find the right solution for your specific case.

Solutions For A Chipped Tooth

Reoccuring Tooth Damage: If you consistently experience chipped teeth, you may be suffering from an underlying dental concern. Broken teeth may be a result of an imbalanced bite, TMJ disorder, or teeth grinding. Dr. Petkevis has completed extensive training in identifying and treating TMJ and other bite disorder. An imbalanced bite can cause stress on certain teeth, causing them to weaken and break over time. Dr. Petkevis will work with you to identify any underlying dental concerns and create a solution based on your needs. Treatment options may include bite equilibration (reshaping the teeth), orthodontics or other restorative treatments to rebalance the bite. One Time Tooth Damage: For patients who have experienced trauma or an accident that has resulted in a chipped tooth, Dr. Petkevis may recommend general or cosmetic dentistry treatment to restore your smile. Depending on the location and extent of damage, Dr. Petkevis may recommend dental bonding, dental crowns, or porcelain veneers, to restore your smile.

Schedule An Appointment

To schedule an appointment, call 610.400.1459 or schedule an appointment online.

Posted in: Uncategorized

Get Straighter Teeth With Invisalign

Invisalign is an effective tool used to address a wide range of orthodontic issues. Invisalign utilizes clear, removable aligners to effectively straighten crooked or misaligned teeth. Invisalign treatment is similar to traditional braces, except Invisalign does not require brackets, wires, or metal to straighten crooked teeth. Invisalign aligners are made from clear, hard-soft plastic that provides a more comfortable, discreet treatment. Invisalign can be recommended for teen and adult patients with mild to moderate orthodontic problems. Dr. Jason Petkevis is a Chester Springs Invisalign provider. If you want to learn more about Invisalign, visit Dental Distinction in Chester Springs, PA.

All About Invisalign

Invisalign can be used to shift the teeth into proper alignment gradually. Invisalign is used to address a wide range of orthodontic concerns including:
  • Overbite
  • Underbite
  • Crossbite
  • Crooked teeth
  • Crooked teeth
To determine if Invisalign is right for you, Dr. Petkevis will perform a comprehensive exam. During your comprehensive exam, Dr. Petkevis will decide if your orthodontic issues are caused by an underlying dental concern. Not only is it important for Dr. Petkevis to straighten your smile, but it is also important to achieve a healthy, functional smile. Benefits of Invisalign
  • Removable aligners
  • No dietary restrictions
  • Reduced gum tissue and soft tissue irritation
  • Straighter teeth
  • Clear aligners
  • Reduce the risk of cavities, gum disease, and tooth decay
  • Predictable results
  • Personalized treatment planning that addresses your dental needs
  • Discreet, comfortable treatment

Schedule A Consultation

Dr. Petkevis offers consultations for Invisalign treatment in our Chester Springs, PA dental office. We can work with you to determine if Invisalign treatment is right for your dental needs. To learn more about Invisalign treatment, contact Dental Distinction in Chester Springs, VA. To schedule an Invisalign consultation, call 610.400.1459 or Request an appointment online. We welcome patients to visit our Chester Springs dental office for personalized, effective solutions to address their dental concerns.

Posted in: Invisalign

It’s Oral Cancer Awareness Month

oral cancer screening chester springs pa Oral cancer may sometimes be hard to identify. It is important for patients to visit the dentist twice a year for preventive care visits. During the preventive care visit, Chester Springs dentist Dr. Jason Petkevis can carefully examine your mouth, cheeks, gums, and throat for any signs of oral cancer. Dr. Petkevis is a trained dentist who has experience identifying and treating complex dental problems. Regular oral cancer screenings can be life-saving for some patients, so Dr. Petkevis suggest that patients visit our Chester Springs dental office. Oral cancer can develop anywhere in the oral cavity and may present itself in a variety of symptoms. Symptoms of oral cancer may include:
  • a sore throat
  • white or red patches in the mouth
  • sores or lesions in the mouth or lips
  • lumps in the mouth, lips, tongue, or throat
  • difficulty moving the jaw
  • pain or tenderness in the jaw
  • numbness in the tongue or lips
If you notice any changes in your oral health or any of the symptoms listed above, please schedule a visit to our Chester Springs dental office. Dr. Petkevis can work with your to determine if you are at risk for oral cancer. If needed, Dr. Petkevis will work with your healthcare specialist to coordinate the appropriate care for your needs.

Schedule An Oral Cancer Screening in Chester Springs, PA

Preventive dental care can help patients receive the early diagnosis needed to improve their quality of life. If you haven't visited the dentist in the past six months, you may benefit from a preventive care visit. If you would like to schedule a screening, call 610.400.1459 or schedule an appointment online. 

Posted in: oral cancer, oral cancer screening philadelphia

Celebrate National Dentist’s Day

National Dentist's Day is celebrated every March to highlight the hard work your dentist does to help keep your smile healthy! Chester Springs dentist Dr. Jason Petkevis is committed to providing the highest standard of dental care to each of his patients to ensure their teeth are strong and healthy. Dr. Petkevis takes the time to address your needs and create a treatment plan that will help promote long-lasting, stable results. In this post, we would like to share what some of our patients are saying about their visit to Dental Distinction in Chester Springs, PA.

Patient Testimonials

Dr. Petkevis and our dental care team strive to provide an environment where patients feel safe, comfortable and well-informed. We take our time to address your dental needs and work with you to find the ideal solution for your smile.
I have spent many years looking for a dentist that I felt I could trust. After trying many in the area, I came across Dental Distinction and it couldn't have been better timing. I required several appointments over the span of a month and a half and every appointment went seamlessly. The office staff is great and Dr. Petkevis is very thorough in his explanations. The office itself offers many perks such as tv and massaging chairs to add comfort. I highly recommend Dental Distinction. - Theresa A. I have always had a great experience at Dental Distinction. The office provides a comfortable atmosphere with friendly staff who make a considerable effort to work with my schedule. Dr. Petkevis is very professional but has a relaxed demeanor and is always up to date with the latest trends in dentistry. He is also very thorough, as he considers broader health issues associated with dental hygiene and goes above and beyond what I have experienced at other dental offices. - Antonio S. Dr. Petkevis and the staff at Dental Distinctions are top notch! Extremely professional and friendly. Dr. Petkevis always explain my options in advance and walks me through each procedure. The office is very clean and a relaxing environment. Highly recommended practice! Sara S.  

Schedule An Appointment

At Dental Distinction, we understand that dentistry isn't a one size fits all industry. We work with each patient to create personalized solutions that address the aesthetic, function, and health of your natural smile. Dr. Petkevis and our dental care team are committed to helping each of our patients improve the health of their smile. If you would like to explore your options or schedule an appointment, contact Dental Distinction in Chester Springs, PA.

Posted in: National Dentist's Day

Get Porcelain Veneers in Chester Springs, PA

Cosmetic dentist Dr. Jason Petkevis offers custom-made porcelain veneers in Chester Springs, PA. Porcelain veneers are ultra-thin, translucent shells that cover the front and sides of the teeth. Porcelain veneers can be used to correct gapped teeth, discolored teeth, damaged teeth, and small misalignment issues. Dr. Petkevis will examine your teeth to determine if porcelain veneers are the right cosmetic solution for you. Dr. Petkevis also offers lumineers and composite resin veneers.

What To Expect: Porcelain Veneers

During your consultation, Dr. Petkevis will discuss your dental goals and thoroughly examine your teeth to determine if dental veneers are right for you. Receiving dental veneers usually requires 2-3 visits to our Chester Springs dental office. Dr. Petkevis will begin by removing a small amount of tooth enamel from the teeth. He will then take impressions of your teeth to create your custom dental veneers. Once the impressions are made, they are sent to a lab for fabrication. Creating dental veneers may take anywhere from 2-3 weeks so Dr. Petkevis may fit you for temporary veneers during the waiting period. Once you dental veneers are completed, Dr. Petkevis will carefully attach them to the front and sides of the teeth and check the quality and fit. Dental veneers can be a natural looking, long-lasting solution to a wide range of dental issues. If you don't want to commit to dental veneers, dental bonding may also give you the results you desire. Visit our Chester Springs dental office to explore your options. Dr. Petkevis can work with you to create a treatment plan that is right for you.

Schedule An Appointment

Dental veneers can give you the smile makeover you've been dreaming of. As a highly trained dentist, Dr. Petkevis takes his time to craft beautiful, long lasting smiles. If you want to see if dental veneers are right for you, you can visit our Chester Springs dental office. Patients can call our office to set up an appointment or schedule an appointment online.

Posted in: Cosmetic Dentist Chester Springs

Treating Gum Disease

Gum Disease Treatment Chester Springs PA Finding the right solution to treat gum disease can be beneficial for your oral health as well as your overall health. Gum disease can wreak havoc on your oral health and cause advanced dental problems in the future. In advanced cases, gum disease can cause deep pockets to form on the gum line which may result in shifting teeth, and eventually tooth loss. At Dental Distinction in Chester Springs, PA, general dentist Dr. Jason Petkevis offers complete, advanced dental care for patients with gum disease. Catching gum disease early allows patients to have a wider range of treatment options and also may minimize the chance of needing invasive treatment. If you are experiencing any signs of gum disease, you can schedule an appointment with Dr. Petkevis. Patients can contact our Chester Springs dental office or schedule an appointment online.

Signs of Gum Disease

The signs of gum disease vary from patient to patient. Some patients may experience minimal symptoms, while another patient may experience the majority of the symptoms. During your visit, Dr. Petkevis will examine your gums, you can disclose any symptoms you may be experiencing, and you can also ask any question you have regarding your oral health. Symptoms of Gum Disease:
  • Swollen or irritated gums
  • Bad breath
  • A toothache
  • Bleeding gums
  • Mouth sores
  • Red, or discolored gums
  • Shifting, or lose teeth
  • Missing teeth
None of the symptoms listed above are an indication of a great oral health standing. If you notice one or more of these symptoms, you may need to schedule an appointment with Dr. Petkevis. Dr. Petkevis will be able to examine your smile and determine which treatment is best for you.

Treatment Options For Gum Disease

Dr. Petkevis offers a wide range of periodontal therapy services to treat patients with early and advanced stages of gum disease. Dr. Petkevis will examine your smile and determine which treatment best suits your needs. Depending on your needs, Dr. Perkevis may recommend one or more of these treatments to improve the health of your smile.

Posted in: Gum Disease