Cosmetic Dentistry Anchorage Alaska | Blog | Dr. Kirk Johnson


Correcting a Gummy Smile Can Improve Your Appearance and Your Prospects

People often think that cosmetic dentistry can only make you look more attractive. While it’s certainly true that cosmetic dentistry will improve the appearance of your smile, your appearance can actually make a big difference in other judgments people make about you and your character.

And sometimes those judgments can have very serious consequences in your life.

Cosmetic dentistry is about more than improving your appearance, it’s about improving your odds of living a better life.

Your smile can change what people think of you

The Impact of a Gummy Smile

The serious impact your smile can have on your life is shown by a recent study on a simple procedure: improving the appearance of a gummy smile. For this study, several patients who had gummy smiles were evaluated. They had smiling photographs taken, showing their typical display of gum tissue. Then these photographs were altered on a computer to extend the teeth similar to what might be achieved with a gum recontouring procedure.

Then the photos of the unmodified and modified images were shown to raters who were asked to evaluate the attractiveness of the smiles as well as whether a person was:

  • Friendly
  • Intelligent
  • Trustworthy
  • Self-confident

The raters consistently judged the photos with digital gum recontouring as being higher for all five characteristics. Although some of the raters were dental professionals and some were laypeople, there was no statistical difference between the two groups.

These initial impressions that people get from your smile are crucial, because people are capable of perceiving our smile faster and from farther than they will hear or understand our words. Before we complete our first sentence, people have already made judgments on the basis of our smile. And it’s these judgments that are likely to govern the impression people get of us: more people say they remember a person’s smile after a first meeting than a person’s clothes, smell, or words.

Bearing the Consequences of a Bad First Impression

So how much of an impact will that first impression have? A lot, if you make a bad one. Research shows that it’s hard to shake a bad impression once you’ve made one. And that impression can have an impact on many different aspects of your life.

When it comes to dating, an attractive smile is the most desired characteristic in a potential date. And when it comes to hiring, people with attractive smiles will be given a job over someone with similar skills 58% of the time, 61% of the time if it’s a forward-facing job.

And the consequences can be just as severe if you find yourself on the wrong side of the law. Jurors are less likely to be forgiving to someone they consider unattractive, handing down harsher sentences on less attractive men.

How Can Your Gummy Smile Be Improved?

But don’t worry. If you’re unhappy with the appearance of a gummy smile, we have the solution. Actually, we have several solutions, depending on the cause of your gummy smile.

The simplest solution to a gummy smile is laser gum recontouring. This works to remove some of the excess gums so you can display more of your pearly whites.

However, if your teeth are actually too small, we can build them up with dental crowns or porcelain veneers, depending on which is right for the placement of your teeth.

Are you tired of living behind your gummy smile? You can step out of the shade and into the light of a beautifully proportioned new smile. Please call (907) 349-0022 today for an appointment with an Anchorage cosmetic dentist at Excellence in Dentistry today.

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What You Need to Know about Porcelain Veneers

Porcelain veneers are the epitome of cosmetic dentistry. They are versatile — capable of correcting almost any cosmetic complaint you have. They are durable — lasting ten years or more in most cases. But most of all, they are attractive — giving you a beautiful smile that looks natural.

But porcelain veneers are just a tool, and they depend on the skilled hand of a cosmetic dentist to achieve the great results you desire. Here’s what you need to know about porcelain veneers so you can decide whether they’re right for you — and find the right dentist in Anchorage to place them.

What Can Porcelain Veneers Do?

We mentioned above that porcelain veneers are versatile — they can help with almost any cosmetic complaint you may have about your smile. This includes fixing teeth that are:

  • Discolored
  • Stained
  • Chipped
  • Cosmetically cracked
  • Small
  • Poorly shaped
  • Crooked
  • Gapped

Virtually any cosmetic complaint you have about your smile short of a missing tooth, porcelain veneers can help. And it can fix all these problems at once, with one procedure. That means that in about a month you can go from having a smile that makes you embarrassed to show it to having the smile of your dreams that makes it almost impossible not to smile — you’ll be that pleased.

Porcelain veneers are durable, versatile, and attractive

How Porcelain Veneers Work

Porcelain veneer is a very good name for this cosmetic dentistry procedure, because it describes them so well. They are a thin facade of ceramic that is bonded to the front of your natural teeth to give them an attractive new appearance and shape.

The specifics of your veneer procedure depend on what you’re trying to achieve. If, for example, you’re trying to reshape some teeth that aren’t attractive in shape or aren’t properly aligned, then you’ll need several veneers, and these might have to be relatively thick. You might have to have significant amounts of tooth material removed to accommodate the veneers. On the other hand, if you’re trying to repair a small chip, you might get just one veneer that is made very thin and fits tightly over the one tooth.

Porcelain veneers can be made to precisely match your other teeth so that they will blend in and won’t be noticed. Or they can be designed to create a new, attractive smile that will definitely be noticed, although no one will know this isn’t your natural smile.

Why “Porcelain”?

People sometimes get worried that the word “porcelain” means that their veneers will be fragile. The word is a bit of a holdover from the first veneers, which were invented by a Hollywood dentist over 80 years ago. These veneers were actually made of the kind of porcelain you’re thinking of, and they were so fragile that the stars who wore them had to take them off between takes.

But porcelain is also used to refer to any ceramic that is white in color. Modern dental veneers can be made out of many different forms of advanced ceramics. Some of them are so strong that you can hit them with a hammer. Others are so strong that they actually make hammers out of them — and bulletproof vests.

Of course, we have to balance strength and beauty, but one common material that is very attractive has a tensile strength of about 58,000 pounds per square inch (psi). For comparison, the strength of your tooth enamel ranges from 1700 psi to 7100 psi.

Choose Your Dentist Carefully

Remember, porcelain veneers are just a tool, albeit an amazing one. What matters most for your results is the craftsman who will be using that tool to remake your smile. That’s why you need to choose your dentist carefully.

When you are considering your options, make sure your dentist of choice:

  • Actually hears your cosmetic goals, doesn’t dictate what your smile should look like
  • Talks about customizing your smile, rather than giving you a generic smile
  • Has years of experience successfully placing porcelain veneers
  • Understands how a bite functions and how to avoid TMJ
  • Has achieved great cosmetic results for other patients–see their smile gallery

When selecting a dentist, it’s important to talk to several different candidates and choose the one that makes you feel fully comfortable in their expertise and their understanding of you and your goals.

If you are looking for a skilled cosmetic dentist in Anchorage to place porcelain veneers, please call (907) 349-0022 today for an appointment with Dr. Johnson or Dr. Burke at Excellence in Dentistry.

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7 Steps For A Healthy Smile In Eagle River

Eagle River Extreme Smile Makeover

 ‘An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.’

Benjamin Franklin coined this phrase in the 1730s as advice for fire safety. However, like all timeless quotes, it applies to many more aspects of Wasilla, Palmer, and Southern Alaska life, particularly dental health.

Keeping your smile beautiful and healthy is done most effectively with preventative measures. Some of the most important guidelines are highlighted here.

1. Make a habit of brushing your teeth. Do it twice a day for 2 minutes. Be sure to use an ADA approved toothpaste and toothbrush. They can be purchased at any Anchorage, Alaska area drugstore.

2. Don’t forget the floss! Flossing between your teeth daily will do wonders for your teeth and keep your gums healthy too.

3. Wear a protective mouthguard whenever you are engaged in an activity where your mouth could possibly be damaged. This includes many Eagle River recreation league and school sponsored sports.

4. Don’t smoke. As if you needed yet another reason not to!

5. Avoid piercing your lips, tongue, cheek, or any other part of your mouth that someone decided you should shove a metal bar through. Piercings put you at greater risk for chipped teeth, infection and nerve damage. It’s a dangerous Anchorage fashion that you’ll want to avoid.

6. Stay away from snacks that have a lot of sugar or starch.

7. Schedule regular dental visits, of course!

My name is Dr. Kirk Johnson
. Helping my dental patients establish good habits is important to me, and so is helping them achieve the smile they want with cosmetic dentistry procedures such as veneers, teeth whitening and complete smile makeovers.

Excellence In Dentistry has been serving the Wasilla, Palmer, and Southern Alaska area since 1987. If you are in the market for an exceptional dentist, we invite you to contact us at 907-349-0022 so we can make an appointment for you.

Dr. Kirk Johnson
Excellence In Dentistry
1000 Omalley Rd, Ste 101
Anchorage, Alaska

The following website was used as source material for this blog:, accessed on Feb. 21, 2013

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Getting Ready For A Dental Implant In Anchorage, Alaska

dental implant cost Wasilla

Dr. Kirk Johnson at Excellence In Dentistry in Anchorage, Alaska believes every patient deserves a beautiful smile whether it takes Invisalign invisible braces, sedation dentistry, or dental implants.

Today’s post will address the preparation needed for dental implants. Consider calling 907-349-0022 today for your own personal consultation and to receive one-on-one information specific to your needs.

Getting ready for a tooth implant includes understanding what it is, whether you are a candidate, how to prepare for the surgery, precautions to take throughout the healing process and what to expect once the implant is complete.

What is a dental implant?
Simply stated, a dental implant is a permanent post fused to the jawbone with attached abutment and artificial tooth. A tooth implant can also support a dental bridge or denture.

Who can benefit from dental implants?
Ideal candidates for dental implants include patients with missing teeth, dentures, or bridges who have healthy oral tissue, adequate bone structure, and proper health for bone healing. Our patients in Eagle River, Southern Alaska, Wasilla, and Palmer come from all backgrounds and have a wide range of dental issues. For many, dental implants are a terrific solution.

What preparation is needed?

An initial visit with Dr. Johnson at Excellence In Dentistry 1000 E O’Malley Rd Ste 101, Anchorage, Alaska 99515 is the first step. For this evaluation be sure to bring pertinent medical information, current medication list, and questions you have about the process. Dental implants take multiple visits and the process is different for each person so be sure you understand all the vital details. If we determine that you don’t have enough bone structure at the implant site, bone grafting may be necessary.

How do I ensure successful healing?
Avoid drugs or medications not approved by your dental caregiver. Eat soft foods for a while to give your mouth time to heal between surgeries. Keep the mouth cleaned properly around site. Follow the instructions given at each visit. Stay healthy by eating a nutritious diet and getting proper rest. Avoid smoking or other tobacco products.

How do I care for dental implants?

Caring for implants is not much different than caring for natural teeth. Be sure to avoid damaging, dangerous habits such as chewing hard items (ice or candy), and seek treatment for teeth grinding if it is a problem for you. See your dentist regularly. Keep the implants and gum tissue around the implants clean just as you (hopefully) do with your natural teeth.

The complete process can take months from consultation to complete healing and placement of the abutment and artificial tooth. At your initial consultation, we can discuss the cost of dental implants and think about financing options.

Visit for more specifics about our practice and services including invisalign braces, gum contouring, veneers and teeth whitening. Our caring staff is ready to offer cosmetic dentistry, restoring smiles, placing dental implants and many other general and cosmetic procedures.

for your health, beauty and well-being


Contact Excellence In Dentistry:


Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1000 E O’Malley Rd Ste 101
Anchorage, AK


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Less Is More In Dentistry

Anchorage affordable family dentist

There are significant new developments in Alaska dentistry: stronger, natural-looking materials; improved techniques; more effective diagnostic methods; and more precise instruments. Combine these with the experience and expertise of Dr. Kirk Johnson and you’re left with less of what used to make people dread going to the dentist.

Less Pain
Improved painkillers, lasers, and revolutionary techniques take the pain out of dental procedures.

Less Inconvenience
Laser dentistry, which employs powerful beams of light, has significantly reduced the time required to complete dental treatment.

Less Time Needed To Heal
Laser dentistry helps alleviate recovery times for procedures such as dental implants, root canals, smile transformations, and other types of oral surgery.

Less Risk
The overall success rate of many dental procedures, including dental implants, has increased.

Less Loss of Healthy Tooth Structure
Dental procedures such as decay removal, inlays, porcelain veneers, and crown restoration can be performed with less loss of healthy tooth structure.

Excellence In Dentistry, an outstanding local practice, is located 1000 Omalley Rd, Ste 101 in Anchorage. We are currently accepting new Eagle River area patients to our state-of-the-art facility. We offer advanced general and cosmetic dental procedures. Ask us about teeth whitening, Invisalign invisible braces, dental implants and porcelain veneers. We look forward to meeting you. Call us today at 907-349-0022 to schedule an exam, cleaning, or consultation.

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Smile Makeover Questions Answered At Excellence In Dentistry

Southern Alaska cosmetic smile makeover

Some Anchorage people with top notch oral health want to improve specific components of their smile. Though proper brushing is critical for healthy teeth, it won’t re-contour a gumline or repair a chipped tooth. A cavity-free mouth may still have stained or slightly misaligned teeth.

If you want to correct the smile elements that can’t be improved with diligent oral hygiene, call 907-349-0022 to schedule a smile makeover consultation with Dr. Kirk Johnson at Excellence In Dentistry. During your consultation, we will meet with you about:

Each smile makeover is completely unique, therefore the price varies from patient to patient depending on the specific procedures performed. During your consultation, Dr. Johnson will give you an estimate for your smile makeover.

Proper function is priority one. Your smile makeover will maintain or improve your ability to talk, eat, and smile.

This is probably the main reason you are choosing to transform your smile. Dr. Johnson will describe the cosmetic improvements you can expect and the technical details about the procedures.

If your cosmetic dental smile makeover requires several hours of treatment, or if you have dental anxiety, you may want to think about sedation. Dr. Johnson will explain your sedation options and the associated costs.

If you have existing tooth decay or gum disease, these issues need to be addressed prior to your cosmetic concerns. It may be possible to combine needed restorative procedures with your cosmetic work.

If you are interested in learning more about smile transformations, call us today at 907-349-0022.

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Are Dental Veneers Reversible?

prepless veneers

With many Anchorage residents looking to improve their smile, porcelain veneers are a celebrated option in the Alaska cosmetic dental community. Unlike a crown that completely covers the tooth, a veneer is a super thin layer of a very substantial porcelain, composite bonding, or ceramic. When bonded to a tooth, the veneer creates a natural, translucent, and perfect new surface. It improves the appearance of the visible portion of your tooth instantly.

To begin, you will need a consultation with your dentist, who should have skill in cosmetic procedures. You should look at what you do not like about your smile and determine how you want it improved. Veneers may not be prime for you. Other cosmetic dental procedures are available that may be a better fit for the characteristics you wish to change.

Porcelain veneers can correct many minor to moderate problems, including the size, shape, and color of your teeth. Gaps between teeth can be filled, as well as the lengthening or shortening of teeth to complete your beautiful smile.

Your dentist will also discuss both types of veneers: “traditional” and “prepless.” Before a traditional veneer is put on the tooth, the dentist first removes a very thin layer of enamel. Enamel cannot be replaced, which is one reason this treatment plan is irreversible.

The second method is called “no-prep” or “prepless.” With this type, enamel removal is frequently not needed. When no enamel is removed, the treatment can be reversible. However, this protocol has specific criteria.

Furthermore, it is possible to use both types of veneers for multiple teeth, depending on the condition of each tooth.

Your dentist will help you evaluate your unique needs and guide you on how to reach your goals. Once you and your dentist have created a dental plan, your dentist will work with a laboratory and dental team to assure everything is carried out as discussed.

If you do not have a cosmetic dentist, we invite you to visit our distinctive practice at 1000 E O’Malley Rd Ste 101 in Anchorage. Kirk Johnson is a consummate smile makeover artist. Experience is a key consideration. Call 907-349-0022 today to schedule a cosmetic dental consultation.


Contact Excellence In Dentistry:


Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1000 E O’Malley Rd Ste 101
Anchorage, AK


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No Cavities? Thank Your Parents

how to prevent cavities Anchorage

At Excellence In Dentistry, we stay abreast of new discoveries in the exciting field of dentistry and occasionally share interesting facts with our patients. Today’s post focuses on new findings in an intriguing field of research: genetic dentistry.

“About 60% of the risk for tooth decay appears to be due to genetic factors.” Mary L. Marazita, director of the Center for Craniofacial and Dental Genetics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine.1

Whoa! Did she say 60%? That’s huge. You might be thinking: “That’s why I brush and floss but still get cavities.” Or, better yet, you might be thinking, “No wonder I have never had a cavity but eat candy often and occasionally go to bed without brushing.”

A recent article on highlights tooth decay risk factors that have a genetic link1:

Enamel Strength
Your genes play an essential role in the composition of your tooth enamel. Soft enamel is more cavity prone.

Sugar Cravings
Whether or not you love sugar has a genetic basis. Now you can blame your parents if you pop M&Ms all day. (But it still isn’t good for your teeth or waistline!)

Chemical Composition of Saliva

Your saliva can protect against cavities – if it properly metabolizes important minerals and vitamins like calcium, potassium, iron, and Vitamin C. Your genes impact your saliva’s power to prevent decay.

Immune Response to Bacteria
We don’t like to think about the dangerous bacteria in our mouth but, hopefully, our immune system is ever-vigilant at fighting their constant attempts to cause decay and gum disease. The stability of your immune system is determined, in part, by genetics.

In the next few decades, scientists in the emerging specialty of genetic dentistry may play a key role in the development of new cavity prevention techniques.

The purpose of this article is not to encourage Excellence In Dentistry patients to be lax about oral hygiene if their parents have strong teeth. Nor to cause those whose teeth decay easily to throw their hands up in despair and resign themselves to a toothless mouth.

Proper oral hygiene is important for all of us, regardless of our genetic predisposition to tooth decay. You have the power to be forward thinking about your oral health, regardless of the genes you inherited. Whether you have frequent dental check-ups, consistent fluoride intake, effective brushing and flossing techniques, and proper nutrition, is up to you.

If you need a thorough dental exam, an expert dental cleaning, a refresher course on proper brushing and flossing, or want to improve your smile with state-of-the art cosmetic dentistry, call Excellence In Dentistry at 907-349-0022 to schedule a consultation.

1Paul Frysh, “Bad teeth? Blame your genes,” CNN, July 3, 2014,, accessed on June 24, 2015


Contact Excellence In Dentistry:


Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1000 E O’Malley Rd Ste 101
Anchorage, AK


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Peace Begins With A Smile

Wasilla cosmetic dental veneers

Mother Theresa once said “Peace begins with a smile.” Perhaps that peace should start with the person who is smiling. How do you feel about your smile? Are you at peace with it? Are you proud to flash a wide, happy grin? Do you believe it is beautiful? Does it express your best self? Let’s talk about your smile.

Bright eyes and bright smiles are best served clear and clean. Regular check ups with your local dental provider can prevent runaway decay and costly corrections. Stay at peace with your smile by scheduling regular dental visits to avoid any future oral problems.

Rest assured that there are ways to redo what nature has given you or cosmetically remedy problems that have affected your once-pleasant smile. Talk to a cosmetic dentist to learn how you can achieve a smile you can be at peace with. For information about veneers, bridges, dental implants, invisalign braces, visit

I’m Dr. Kirk Johnson with Excellence In Dentistry located in Anchorage at 1000 E O’Malley Rd Ste 101. Just like Mother Teresa said, I believe peace can begin with a smile. If you are not content with the appearance or condition of your teeth, gums, or bite, call 907-349-0022 to schedule a cosmetic dental consultation.

I have years of experience providing my Anchorage area patients with cosmetic dentistry, smile makeovers and total mouth reconstruction. I fix bite issues, seal children’s molars, remove decay, contour gums, mend cracks, bridge gaps, and reconstruct after tooth injury.

We are your local, experienced dental practice and provide quality service and products. We are committed to creating the best dental experience possible. If dental visits make you feel the exact opposite of peaceful, let’s talk about oral conscious sedation. With a little help, you can get through your treatment with minimal anxiety and be at peace with your smile for years to come.

We’ve been providing services such as cosmetic dentistry, restoring smiles, and placing dental implants since 1987 to Anchorage and nearby communities such as Southern Alaska, Wasilla, and Palmer. Even patients from Eagle River have found value in traveling to see us. Our caring, competent staff can schedule and discuss any of our top services such as Invisalign invisible braces, sedation dentistry, dental implants, teeth whitening, and porcelain veneers.

for your health, beauty and well-being- Kirk Johnson DDS


Contact Excellence In Dentistry:


Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

1000 E O’Malley Rd Ste 101
Anchorage, AK


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You, Only Better

cost of dental crowns Eagle River

If you’re looking for the brightest, whitest smile possible but insist that you want it to look natural, Dr. Kirk Johnson can sit down with you and show you how to achieve it. 907-349-0022

Here at Excellence In Dentistry we use effective, cost sensitive, cutting-edge methods and tools as we create the best smile for each individual.

Many professionals and public figures in Alaska are taking advantage of modern cosmetic dentistry to improve their appearance and enhance their natural attractiveness. Perhaps you have noticed men and women in the local media with smiles that seem extremely bright and beautiful for people of their age.

You, too, can have a smile that is extremely bright and beautiful, regardless of your age. Whether you are in your fifties, sixties, seventies or beyond, we can provide an anti-aging treatment that doesn’t offer empty promises. Our smile makeovers deliver dramatic results as promised!

You have probably heard of porcelain veneers, dental implants, orthodontics, crown restoration, and teeth whitening. Some lesser-known procedures include laser gum contouring, silver filling replacement, and implant anchore dentures. Gum countoring can remedy a gumline that is not aesthetically pleasing. We can replace old amalgam (silver) fillings with composites that are matched to your tooth color. Denture wearers can improve not only their smile but their eating ability with implant-anchored dentures.

Let’s do this together. If you have other issues that need to be reviewed first, rest assured that Dr. Johnson has been offering cosmetic dentistry, restoring smiles, and placing dental implants since 1987. You can be confident that Dr. Johnson has the expertise and high standards you deserve.

Our caring staff is waiting to schedule an appointment for you at Excellence In Dentistry in Anchorage. Let us enhance your natural beauty with a smile makeover.

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