Invisalign May Be the Solution For Your Smile


Could orthodontic treatment be the solution for your dental health or cosmetic concerns?

ThinkstockPhotos-101839034 Many patients know that it could but do not want to experience the embarrassment or inconvenience of metal braces. For those who need mild to moderate orthodontic treatment to address their concerns or problems, Invisalign may be the perfect solution.

Located in Plano Dr. Mark Sowell is an Invisalign provider and often recommends this as a cosmetic or restorative dental treatment option. Invisalign can gently and gradually straighten teeth that are crooked or misaligned, correcting problems such as cross bite, over bite and underbite.

How Does Invisalign Work?

Available for teens and adults, Invisalign uses a series of clear retainers that are custom made by Dr. Sowell from molds of your teeth and designed to move teeth into the desired position over a period of about a year. The aligners are custom designed using special CAD/CAM software that enables Dr. Sowell to plan your treatment and create predictable results.

Patients can enjoy several key benefits:

  • removable retainers allow easy brushing and flossing
  • smooth, plastic material is comfortable and does not irritate soft tissues
  • they are invisible and no one has to know you are wearing braces

Crooked teeth can go beyond being a cosmetic concern- they can have an impact on oral health. It is often difficult to effectively clean between teeth that are misaligned, increasing the chances of decay and tooth cavities or gum disease. They may also affect a patient’s bite, leading to temporomandibular joint issues, or TMJ, as pressure is placed in the wrong places to accommodate an imbalanced bite.

If you have teeth that are crooked, or have concerns about your bite, schedule a consultation with Dr. Sowell. He will perform a thorough exam and discuss the best options for restoring and maintaining your dental health.

Posted in: cosmetic dentistry, Invsialign

Patient Focused Dentistry in Dallas


Looking for a dentist who will listen to your concerns?

Dallas dentist Dr. Mark Sowell offers concierge dentistry based on patient education and communication in an effort to help them achieve a healthy, attractive smile. Your first visit to our Plano dentist office will provide an opportunity for you to get to know our office and staff and us to learn about your oral health and personal concerns.

Office Tour 6Dr. Sowell will take the time to meet with you personally and take digital photographs of your smile as a baseline for your future treatment. These photos can also help you to discuss your dental health and/or cosmetic concerns as part of treatment planning.

Your dental health is at the heart of all dentistry that we recommend, and Dr. Sowell will look for any signs of gum disease, tooth decay, oral cancer and malocclusion during a comprehensive examination at your next visit with him. Undiagnosed and untreated dental problems can often compromise the results of any dental procedure, costing you both time and money to correct in the future. Dr. Sowell will also prepare before and after digital images to demonstrate expected results from specific procedures that can address any cosmetic desires or concerns you discussed at your first visit.

Cosmetic dentistry and restorative dentistry procedures can both enhance your smile and help to support long term dental health. Keeping your smile comfortable and functional is just as important as aesthetics and is also part of maintaining a good quality of life!

Ready to get your confident smile back? Contact Dr. Sowell to schedule a consultation and learn more about what he can do for you and your dental health.

Posted in: cosmetic dentistry, find a dentist dallas

Get Screened For Oral Cancer During Routine Dental Care


This month take a moment to assess you oral cancer risk and make sure you have a routine dental appointment scheduled with Dr. Mark Sowell, which includes an oral cancer screening.

Oral cancer continues to be a growing health risk for several reasons: the increasing prevalence of the HPV-16 virus and lagging rates of screening despite the fact that an oral cancer screening is both inexpensive and painless. Dallas dentist Dr. Sowell performs an oral cancer screening as part of preventive dental care to look for the early warning signs of oral cancer. ThinkstockPhotos-151338885

The Oral Cancer Foundation expects that over 45,000 new diagnoses will occur this year, an increase over 2014 numbers and a continuation in rising oral cancer rates. Understanding the possible signs of oral cancer can lead to an early diagnosis, but in many cases they can go unnoticed until a thorough examination by Dr. Sowell reveals subtle changes in the soft tissues of the mouth which can signal possible cancerous growth.

Common signs of oral cancer

  • Sore or red/white patch in the mouth that does not heal
  • Persistent hoarseness
  • Lump in the back of the mouth or neck area
  • Difficulty swallowing

Spotting oral cancer in the early stages is extremely important because late stage disease is often very difficult to treat and cure. The survival rate for oral cancer has been hovering around 50% largely due to the high percentage of late stage cases because of the overall lack of screening.

Be a part of the solution- and reduce your risk of being diagnosed with a late stage disease. Be sure to visit Dr. Sowell in his Plano dentist office twice a year for preventive dental care and a screening for the signs of oral cancer. Dr. Sowell can also discuss the risk factors associated with oral cancer with you if you have concerns based on your health history or lifestyle habits.

Oral cancer risk factors

  • Smoking or tobacco use
  • Race and ethnicity: more prevalent among the black population
  • Exposure to HPV virus through lifestyle habits

Oral cancer screening is just another great reason to be sure that you visit our office in Plano, TX dentist twice a year. Preventive dental care not only supports a good quality of life, but may be life saving!

Posted in: oral cancer screening dallas, Oral Health

Plano Dentist Teaches Dentists From Around the Globe at Spear Education


Dr. Mark Sowell recently returned from leading a three day workshop at Spear Education in Scottsdale, AZ. Offering programs for advanced education in the field of dentistry, Spear Education draws participants from all over the world.

As a visiting faculty member of this prestigious institution, Dr. Sowell is able to both “teach and learn” each time he visits Spear Education to participate in a specialized workshop. Of the Spear Education program, Dr. Sowell remarks, “we are training only the top 10% and those willing to sacrifice to be the best- those that have the passion.”

Dr. Sowell, who teaches at Spear Education six times per year, recently assisted in conducting a workshop on Facially Generated Treatment Planning. “I assisted teaching 48 dentists who came from all over the world and the US, paying the high tuition of $6,000.00, plus air travel and hotel and food and time away from the office to learn from the best learning center in the world,” explains Dr. Sowell. These professionals come together to advance their knowledge, learn about how to be better dentists and serve patients more efficiently.

Dr. Sowell brings this wealth of knowledge back to his Plano, TX dental practice where he offers general, cosmetic and restorative dental services. Dr. Sowell is dedicated to providing dentistry that not only meets but exceeds his patients’ expectations. He takes the time with each new case to gain an understanding of their overall health, personal concerns and goals for their dental health.

Throughout his career, Dr. Sowell has dedicated countless hours to continuing education as both a student and teacher. He is a leading cosmetic dentist in the Dallas area, passionate about offering the best possible dentistry to patients who seek to improve both their dental health and the appearance of their smile. His experience with Spear Education enables him to take a holistic approach to each case and provide the comfortable, lasting results that afford his patients the quality of life they expect and deserve.

Posted in: plano dentist

Common Dental Concerns As We Mature


Today Americans are keeping their teeth longer than even before, and the average number of teeth we retain as we age is beginning to increase. With this mind, it is important to beware of potential dental concerns that may arise or may already be effecting us. Dr. Sowell, a nationally recognized expert in the fields of cosmetic, implant and restorative dentistry, would like to share some of the common dental health problems that we may face as we mature.


Tooth Cavities & Dry Mouth

A common cause of cavities as we get older is dry mouth- a possible side effect from taking medications to treat a number of conditions and diseases. It is important to share with your dentists any medications you are taking so that they can make suggestions to relieve dry mouth symptoms and in turn, prevent future cavities. Your dentist may recommend an ADA approved oral moisturizer or other methods to restore moisture to your mouth and increase the flow of saliva.

Gum Disease

According to the CDC as many as 64% of Americans over the age of 65 have moderate to severe forms of periodontal disease. Often a painless condition until its advanced stage, gum disease is caused by the bacteria in plaque, which irritate the gums, making them swollen, red and more likely to bleed. Eventually, the gum pulls away from the tooth and creates pockets which can become infected. If this condition develops and continues unchecked, it may destroy the gums, bone and ligaments supporting the teeth leading to tooth loss. Again, regular dental visits can help to treat or prevent gum disease entirely.

Oral Cancer

There are about 35,000 cases of oral cancers diagnosed each year according to the American Cancer Society. Symptoms can be characterized by open sores, white or reddish patches, and changes in the lips, tongue and lining of the mouth that lasts for more than two weeks. Your regular dental exam should include a check for cancer- early detection can save lives!

During preventive care visits to Dr. Sowell, he and his staff can spot the early signs of tooth decay and gum disease, offering treatment before significant damage is done. Modern dentistry emphasizes the importance of keeping the natural teeth as long as possible, supporting their health with preventive and restorative dentistry. Contact us to schedule your appointment.

Posted in: adult dental care dallas, Dentist in Plano, Gum Disease in Adults

The Dental Benefit of Chewing Sugarless Gum


Many of us have New Year’s resolutions we struggle to keep.  Sometimes, taking on a new habit to rid ourselves of an old one seems like a good alternative.  In the case of sugarless gum chewing, this is true!  Feel free to curb your cravings for those bad habits with a minty fresh stick of sugarless chewing gum.  Clinical studies supported by the American Dental Association have shown that chewing sugarless gum for 20 minutes after meals can help fend off tooth decay. Because choosing the correct chewing gum is crucial for reaping these benefits, Plano Texas dentist Dr. Sowell would like to offer some insight on this hot topic.155326361

Chewing sugarless gum increases the flow of saliva, which has a number of positive effects on your oral health. Saliva washes away residual food debris, neutralizes the acidity of certain foods and beverages, and coats the mouth with disease-fighting substances. Saliva also carries calcium and phosphate, which are vitally important for strengthening tooth enamel.

Look for the American Dental Association (ADA) seal of approval when selecting your new favorite sugarless gum. Without the ADA seal, you cannot be sure that the gum is truly sugarless and it could end up causing cavities rather than preventing them. Truly sugarless gum contains non-cavity causing sweeteners such as xylitol, sorbitol, or mannitol rather than true sugar.

Chewing sugarless gum is not a substitute for good oral hygiene practices; it is purely a supplementary method for preventing tooth decay. The ADA still recommends flossing regularly and brushing twice a day with a fluoride-containing toothpaste.

If you have any questions regarding sugarless gum or need help finding an ADA-approved toothpaste, please feel free to discuss it with Dr. Sowell during your next visit!

Posted in: benefits of sugarless gum, preventative dental care TX

Conquer your fear of the dentist this year!


Do you experience anxiety or fear at the thought of visiting a dentist? If so, you are not alone. Anxiety is one of the biggest reasons why patients delay dental treatment or do not visit their dentist on a regular basis. Plano, TX dentist Dr. Mark Sowell is committed to helping his patients feel more at ease throughout their dental visit and would like to offer some strategies for combatting anxiety at the dentist.


  • Share your anxiety with your dentist. Dr. Sowell is dedicated to his patients and will take the necessary steps to make sure that you feel as comfortable as possible. Sometimes, simply sharing your thoughts can make you more relaxed.
  • Schedule your appointment during the least stressful part of your day/week. This time varies among different people, but if you do not feel rushed or under pressure, your visit will be much more pleasant.
  • If the sound of the hand piece or dental instruments is the source of your anxiety, consider bringing headphones to your visit and listening to your favorite music or an audio book. Your fears may subside once you create a more calming and relaxing treatment environment.

Dr. Sowell also offers sedation dentistry for patients who desire it and will discuss your medical history and concerns before recommending the best option. He is one of few Dallas area dentists offering IV sedation as well as oral sedation.

Aside from the strategies mentioned above, it is important that you make regular visits to the dentist. Maintaining good oral hygiene defends against dental diseases and lowers the potential need for invasive dental treatment later. Regular dental visits are necessary to help spot oral health problems in the early stages, when treatment is more likely to be simpler and more affordable. Continuity of care is important in medicine and dentistry alike, and for this reason, Dr. Sowell strives to build lasting relationships with his patients and encourage their satisfaction with treatment and likelihood for return.

Posted in: dental anxiety

Is your toothpaste ruining your teeth?


From the desk of Dr. Mark Sowell, DDS:

The oral hygiene products you use between preventive dental care visits can have a dramatic effect on your long term oral health. Unfortunately major manufacturers put out a lot of misinformation about mouthwashes and toothpastes to market their products.516314543

So that my patients can make informed decisions about their oral health I’d like to review the desired characteristics of a tooth paste to start. The first thing is most of the plaque or bacteria is removed by the mechanical action of brushing, not the effects of the toothpaste. Thus the design of the toothbrush has a much larger role. This is why electric toothbrushes are important and desirable to make efferent plaque removal easier.

It is important for toothpaste to have a low abrasive index with any brush especially with electric tooth brush. If you have an abrasive paste and then use a power brush is the combination that is used to strip floors so why would you want to do that to your teeth. Yes it will remove stain better on your teeth, but at the expense of your protective enamel!

I have never seen a patient who drinks coffee, red wine or smokes keep their teeth stain free but I have seen many damage their teeth over time using abrasive toothpastes.

This issue is so important the American Dental Association (ADA) tests and publishes the relative abrasiveness of all toothpastes and anything over 100 is undesirable for the long term health of your teeth and under 50 is most desirable. Now when you consider porcelain, the effects will dull the polished surface of the porcelain.

Thus it is very common and a shame when patients use abrasive toothpastes on beautiful porcelain veneers and crowns and dull the surface of the porcelain over time. The purpose of this article is to try to change behavior so their smiles will look good 10 years after placement!

The oral environment gets more acidic as we start taking prescription medications, which increases the surface wear of our teeth, roots and porcelain, so we certainly do not need abrasive tooth pastes working against us. But a toothpaste can provide important ingredients to help reverse the deterioration of the oral environment . Xylitol is an effective antibacterial component, as well as neutral sodium fluoride. Hydroxiapitite helps remineraize teeth to make them more resistant to acids from bacteria and our diet. Antioxidants help the gingival tissues heal and regenerate from the effects of oral bacteria. Carbamide Peroxide can be added to help with the whitening of teeth.Potassium nitrate helps decrease root sensitivity.The following list you can see how abrasive your tooth paste is.

As a general rule, gels are much less abrasive than pastes. Please note that Consumer Reports reviewed tooth pastes and unfortunately they did not consider the RDA, only stain removal, so high abrasive tooth pastes got the best ratings!

ADA Ratings:

0-50 RDA (Relative dentin abrasiveness)

  • straight baking soda
  • PERIO SCIENCE tooth paste
  • Arm & hammer tooth powder
  • Elmex Sensitive Plus

50-70 RDA

  • Rembrandt Original
  • Arm and Hammer Peroxicare Regular
  • Arm and Hammer Dental Care sensitive
  • Supersmile

70-100 RDA

  • Colgate regular
  • Colgate total
  • Harm and Hammer Advanced white sensitive
  • Colgate 2 in1 fresh mint
  • Sensodyne
  • AIM
  • Colgate Sensitive Maximum Strength
  • Aquafresh Sensitive
  • Rembrandt Plus
  • Crest Regular (99)

above 100 RDA

  • Natural White
  • Metadent
  • Arm and Hammer Sensation
  • Sensodyne Extra whitening
  • Colgate Platinum
  • Crest sensitivity Protection
  • Colgate Herbal
  • Amway Glister
  • Aquafresh Whitening
  • Arm & Hammer Advance white gel
  • Arm and hammer sensation Tartar Control
  • Colgate Whitening
  • Colgate extra whiting
  • Ultra brute Advanced Whiting formula
  • Colgate Baking Soda and Peroxide Whitening Formula
  • Pepsodent
  • Colgate Tartar Control
  • Colgate 2 in 1 Tartar Control

The tooth paste that I recommend in our office is the Perio Science tooth paste because it has a low abrasive index thus will not damage your roots or porcelain even with the electric tooth brush we recommend which is the Sonic Care electric tooth brush. Additionally is contains several of the components listed above to help create a health oral environment as well as antioxidants. The cost is little different from that the major brands as you do not use as much- size of a pea for each brushing.

I hope this has been helpful as I want your teeth and porcelain to last as long as possible!

Posted in: oral hygiene

Experience the benefits of sedation dentistry and get your smile back!


Sedation options available for today’s dental patients enable those who suffer with dental anxiety to both restore their oral health and achieve the smile they have always wanted!

Avoiding the dentist often results in the development of complex dental problems that can have a detrimental affect on daily quality of life. Damaged teeth, gum disease, and lost teeth can impact diet, speech and overall health!

509627195Dallas dentist Dr. Mark Sowell emphasizes the benefits of routine dental care in preventing problems such as these and helping patients maintain a healthy, functioning smile from year to year. Dr. Sowell understands the struggles his patients with dental anxiety face when visiting his dentist office and offers several sedation dentistry options to ensure their comfort during treatments, including the option of IV sedation performed by a local dental anesthesiologist in our comfortable Dallas dentist office.

Dr. Sowell also offers nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, as an alternative for patients needing or desiring sedation. An inhalation sedation, nitrous has several benefits for patients choosing to be sedated:

  • The depth of sedation can be altered at any time to increase or decrease sedation.
  • There is no after effect such as a “hangover”
  • Considered safe with no side effects on your heart or lungs
  • It is very effective in minimizing gagging
  • It works rapidly, reaching the brain within 20 seconds and relaxing patients within 2-3 minutes.

As with IV sedation, Dr. Sowell will discuss your medical history to ensure that your a candidate for nitrous oxide to prevent any possible complications.

Sedation dentistry is an important facet of modern dentistry, enabling patients with severe dental anxiety to maintain their oral health as part of an overall healthy lifestyle. If you have been avoiding the dentist, come in for a visit with Dr. Sowell and discuss your options for sedation to ensure your comfort during a dental procedure.

Posted in: sedation dentistry

How can cosmetic dentistry benefit your dental health?


Cosmetic dentistry can both transform your smile and restore dental health.

Addressing dental concerns such as crooked teeth, misaligned teeth and damaged teeth not only enhances the appearance of your smile, but also improves the integrity of the natural teeth and restores balance to the bite. Although many of these concerns may seem to detract from the beauty of your smile, they also impact your overall oral health and can increase the risk of common dental problems: teeth that are out of position or damaged are more prone to decay or even loss.

Nationally recognized Dallas cosmetic dentist Dr. Mark Sowell can work with you to achieve your cosmetic goals while also addressing overall dental health. He understands the importance of fixing underlying dental problems in conjunction with any dentistry to ensure lasting, comfortable results. 486711103

Choosing the right cosmetic dentist is important!

Dr. Sowell is a member of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD), a testament to his dedication to the science and artistry of cosmetic dentistry in order to provide the best possible results utilizing the latest treatments and procedures. During a complimentary “Smile Design” consultation, Dr. Sowell will examine your smile and discuss your personal goals. This is the perfect opportunity to ask any questions you may have, learn about the wide range of cosmetic treatments available, and work with Dr. Sowell to create a personalized treatment plan. In many cases, treatments can be completed in phases to accommodate your time, goals and budget.

Financing and Payment

Dr. Sowell understands the economic pressures of today’s dental patients and offers a variety of payment options to cover treatment cost for cosmetic procedures that are not covered by traditional dental insurance:

  • Incentives for paying up front in full
  • Third party financing with Springstone, Chase and Dental Fee Plan. We also offer up to 12 months interest-free plans as well as terms up to 60 months at a reduced interest rate (Dr. Sowell pays the interest to make quality dentistry affordable).
  • The “cruise plan:” prepay one or two times per month until you build up a balance to start your treatment.

Dr. Sowell and his staff can help you with costs and financing prior to treatment to ensure that you receive the best possible dentistry within your budget.

Posted in: cosmetic dentist dallas, cosmetic dentistry