Austin Smile Creations – Austin Dentist Blog

A blog about implant dentistry, cosmetic dentistry, general and family dentistry and a healthy living.

Archive for Westlake Hills Austin

Dentist in Westlake Hills, 78746, for 20 years!

Providing Westlake Hills With the Best Implant, Cosmetic and General Dentistry for Over 20 years!

Dr. Gotun established his practice in Austin in 1985, but he moved to Westlake Hills, 78746, in 1994. In 2014 we have celebrated our 20th anniversary in this fantastic community! Having been part of its history and a witness to all the evolution in Rollingwood and Westlake Hills here in Austin, Dr. Gotun is proud to tell his patients all the stories about the area ( and he knows many!), all the celebrity clients that he has had over the years, all the iconic figures he had the privilege to meet.

Learn from the Best!

A mentor and a patron for the students in Westlake High School, Dr. Gotun got to educate many young aspiring students about the joys and the challenges of the dental profession. Having participated in Westlake High School Independent Study Mentorship program for many years, our practice feels fortunate to have had a chance to help the students explore careers, discover their true passions and find a direction in life and their professional future. It is an exciting time in their life and we are glad to be a part of it by showing them that excellence in dentistry can be achieved through a lifetime of dedication to continuing education and  ever-evolving experience and practice. With such a commitment at stake, it is crucial to make the right choice for a successful career in the future!

Award-Winning Westlake and Rollingwood Community Member. Come and Meet Your Neighbor!

Westlake Picayune has also featured Dr. Gotun’s Lifelong Service and Recognition Award in 2012 for his rare dedication to continuing education and contribution to the field of dentistry.This is a rare honor and Dr. Gotun is the only dentist in Central Texas to ever receive LLSR.

Local Westlake dentist receives rare honor from peers

Visit us in Westlake Hills! We are located at the first stoplight of Bee Caves Rd west of MoPac. Take a right onto Edgegrove and turn directly into our private parking lot. Our office is right across from Collectic Home and Trader Joe’s.

Our building is surrounded by private calm and beautiful green park and one can enjoy the views of the Eanes Creek out of the floor-to-ceiling windows in every operatory in the office.

2724 Bee Caves Rd, Austin, TX, 78746. Serving Central Austin, Westlake Hills and Rollingwood.

Austin Smile Creations Introduces an Interview with a Master Dentist.

There are not very many opportunities an individual gets to speak or even work with one of the best in their line of work. It’s an even rarer occurrence to sit down every day and witness their thought processes. At Austin Smile Creations in Westlake, TX, we have that rare opportunity to not only work beside, but to have a close relationship with a true dental guru: Dr. Tor Gotun. But then we need to answer the following to obtain any credibility in that statement, how can anyone label another as the best? We could very well consider Dr. Gotun’s richness of qualifications to validate such a bold statement. Imagine 30,000 hours of continuing education beyond a Doctoral Degree, a 99% success rate in surgically complicated dental procedures, holding the title of a Master in the Academy of General Dentistry, mentoring and teaching some of the best in the dental field, genuinely caring and therefore individualizing each patient’s treatment plan, and persistently reading dental literature. In all this busyness, Dr. Gotun took the time to sit down with the Austin Smile Creations’ team and answer a few questions we had.

ASC Team: Dr. Gotun, what do you think sets your practice and you as a dentist apart from most other dentists out there?

Dr. Gotun: Let me start by saying there is nothing necessarily wrong with how other dentists practice, I just choose to practice differently. I take what I like to call a whole body approach to dentistry. The thing about it is that teeth are not independent of themselves. The body is a system in which all parts have the potential to affect other parts. An infection in your heart will eventually flow to other parts of the body. The same is true for teeth. I look at the body as a whole and how I can achieve the best results for each individual given their needs, medical and anatomical boundaries, and dental history. I collect so much information on a patient through accurate diagnostics that my ability to predict success and carry it out is exceptionally high.

ASC Team: What has kept you motivated to practice dentistry for 30 years?

Dr. Gotun: The medical field is not only a rewarding field to be in because you get to help people feel better and achieve a result they may not have ever imagined, but it’s also ever-evolving. It never gets old. There is always something else to read, try, see, participate in, and perfect. It’s my passion. It’s hard to describe because it’s in my bones, and truly something I love to do. Some people never find that passion. I am lucky to wake up every day and do what I love.

ASC Team: One more question Dr. Gotun, what made you choose not to specialize in the dental field, say a periodontist or an oral surgeon?

Dr. Gotun: It’s funny you all ask that, since most people think a general dentist doesn’t perform to the level of care as a specialist or may not know the extent of what a specialist may know. I never specialized because I am able to practice all forms of dentistry from crowns to periodontal surgeries, oral surgery to treating temporomandibular disorders, and orthodontics to endodontic therapy. It keeps my work interesting, as well as allowing me to provide a service unparalleled to my patient base where they can receive treatment all in one place.  

While Dr. Gotun’s accent can be intimidating at first, he is clearly a dentist who candidly cares about quality dentistry in an industry that claims anything besides extracting teeth are optional. Dr. Gotun is a dentist that visualizes dentistry in his dreams and thrives on perfecting his own technique. Such passion and conviction certainly set the standard high, keep his staff alive, his patients satisfied, and his practice thriving.

Reconstructive Dentistry. Austin's Best Cosmetic Dentist in Westlake 78746.

Working many years within the dental profession we notice smiles at Austin Smile Creations. Then again, don’t most people notice a smile or non-smile for that matter? Not only do we notice everyone’s smile, we are oftentimes extremely critical of our own. After all, we’re bombarded with images of beauty in this society every way we look. The most fantastic thing about working with Dr. Gotun is because he has the ability to completely reconstruct a smile to near perfection, as a team, we get to be a part of those life-changing moments with patients. And believe us when we say it’s life-changing.

We are in the healthcare profession, but we also consider ourselves esteem boosters, creative artists, and flawless visionaries. Reconstructing smiles is not a teeth-in-a-day process, because it’s literally impossible and much too risky (but they sure have the advertising down, don’t they?). Our multi-disciplined approach requires patience and commitment, but the results are unparalleled. We have seen patients get promotions in their line of work, change their outlook on life, find their soul mates, and just turn into all-around happier people when their smiles are made new.

We offer everything here at Austin Smile Creations from root canal therapy to periodontal treatment and maintenance to sinus lifts, implants, treating temporomandibular disorders, and complete smile makeovers. We provide excellent payment options to our patients, so you are able to invest in a smile you want and need. We ask you to regard your smile as an investment. After all, the more you smile the happier, healthier, more attractive, and confident you become!

Austin's Dentist Standard of Care. Planning in Dentistry.

Clinically, planning is everything in dentistry. It’s what we believe at Austin Smile Creations, your Westlake Dentist. We drive this point home among colleagues, patients and, well, really anyone we have the pleasure of meeting. Planning is the difference between success and failure, we believe. While any dentist may experience success without planning, it’s the risk they are willing to take at a patient’s expense. Planning goes hand-in-hand with perfection in all areas of dentistry, and because we strive for perfection in all areas of dentistry, the key to reaching that is all in Dr. Gotun’s expert planning.

So what does this mean for the patient? Put simply, we give each patient the best quality and most individualized care that can be offered in dentistry. When we say Dr. Gotun tackles each case on a case-by-case basis that’s exactly what we mean. He dissects each case individually, after thorough examination and in-depth diagnostics. Remember all those x-rays that are taken at an initial appointment- 18 to be exact? Or what about the gooey impression material needed to create exact replicas of each individual’s teeth and bite? Or maybe a 3D image called a CBCT scan- Cone Beam Computed Tomography– basically a 3D map of both head and jaw? All are diagnostics, which are part of necessary planning in what we consider our only option at Dr. Gotun’s office: taking really good care of people. Because we care about each patient’s health in it’s entirety (did you know your dental health affects your overall health? More on that later…), we are absolutely keen on proper planning for patient’s to recieve only the best dental care.                                                  

From a patient perspective, if you ask me, there’s nothing else I would want more than knowing and trusting I’m getting the best dental care. Any dentist has the ability to cement a crown, but is that dentist looking at how that crown will affect your bite? Does the dentist look at the way the temporomandibular joints align and possible tension on those muscles and joints naturally? Do they study if a procedure will affect your comfort? Are they using a semi-adjustable articulator to analyze your models before even beginning to plan treatment? Do they complete in-depth research of what will treat the problems and not just the symptoms? This is our standard of care at Austin Smile Creations, because this is the philosophy we all believe in.

Ultimately, we want patients to know what kind of quality they receive in our practice. We want patients to be involved, understand and ask about treatment options. We dedicate ourselves to finding the longest lasting results, because we want to have the happiest patients! For the team at Austin Smile Creations to reach these goals and provide exceptional dental care all begins with proper planning in every stage of dentistry.

Happy Healthy Smiles in Westlake Hills. Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Westlake Hills 78746.

Here it is! The warm and bright Texas spring sun is here and the gorgeous breezy sunsets are to die for. Spring is our favorite time of the year, and we hope you enjoy it as much as we do.

Just as you get inspired to clean out your closet, don’t forget to take a good look at your smile. Is it healthy? Are you happy with it? Are you proud to show it off? If you answered no to any of these questions – you need to give us a call. Dr.Gotun and our entire team are at your service to help with any concerns or any desires for improvements. We CAN make you proud of your smile!

We are happy to take care of your family and friends as well, and we are greatful for your continuing referrals and appreciation of the quality of care we offer. So go ahead, spread the word!

A Confident Smile Will Change Someone’s Day

Give them a smile: a happy, friendly, and genuine smile. Go ahead, flash it!  It’s contagious, it’s infectious, it’s the universal expression of happiness.  A simple smile can change someone’s day.

Some people are a little nervous about smiling. They don’t think their smile looks good, or they think that smiling makes them look unprofessional or vulnerable. No matter how professional, intelligent, or “together” you think a serious face makes you appear, people almost always respond better to a smile.

We all know of someone we consider to have an “infectious” smile.  Infectious smiles always start with confidence.  If you’re not 100% confident in your smile, we’re here to help.

We’re more than happy to discuss with you the many options available to help you achieve a smile worth sharing and a smile that will change someone’s day –including your own.

Dental Insurance. In and out-of-network providers.

This is a very complicated topic. The intricacies of the insurance system and variables in dental practices make it very complicated to explain, but we will try to share some insights into the world of insurance confusion.
It is a fact that dental insurance is nothing like medical, and you should keep that in mind. The coverage is very different, and there is nothing that dental insurance realistically covers at 100%. Most PPO plans state that they pay 100% of preventive services ( cleanings and exams), 80% of basic services ( fillings) and 50% of major ( everything else). There are some variations in which services fall into which group based on the plan. It is important to know that they pay percentages of their “usual and customary fees” which they define based on some national averages. Also keep in mind that these fees have not been updated for 15 years or so, so do your own math and figure what realistically the payment can amount to, especially if you live in a prominent area, say, such as Westlake Hills in Austin. Another important thing – the yearly maximum that insurance pays on most plans is $1500. While it is better than nothing – it will not help you tremendously if you need a lot of dental work and you need it done in one year. Insurance does not cover TMJ disorder treatment, cosmetic services, implants. Most insurance agents offering better policies do not sell dental insurance at all. So it is up to you to make a choice if dental insurance is worth the premiums for you for these benefits.

It is also a fact that there is a difference between in-network providers and out-of-network providers. While most people don’t realize it, no two dental practices are the same, even without any affiliations with insurance networks. Every dentist is different when it comes to education and experience, has a different approach to dentistry, chooses different equipment and materials, techniques and methods, and also how to run their business. When it comes to determining fees –  all of those factors plus the going rates in the area where the practice is located are crucial. Knowing that, even if you do shop around, you will probably not find a big difference comparing fees of dental practices of similar philosophy. If you find a big difference –  odds are – you are comparing apples and oranges and you may want to ask yourself what that difference gives you and what you might be sacrificing by choosing one practice over the other.

With in- network providers, the insurance company and your employer negotiate the rates and what is covered. So the insurance companies set their level of reimbursements to the doctors for various procedures and the rest of it is your out-of-pocket. Unfortunately, because of being very outdated ( ask any insurance agent) – the reimbursement rates are very low, and the doctors who strive to produce cutting-edge dentistry using the latest equipment simply cannot make it work, otherwise there would be no out-of -network providers. There is a reason why many dental practices choose to be independent –  so they could be the ones setting the bar for themselves. And even then, there are apples and oranges.

Hopefully this helps you a little bit to understand the big picture ( or at least see that it is even bigger). We believe, that one factor in determining your choice of a dentist trumps all others -it  is not insurance, not if the dentist is in- or  out-of-network, but the dentist himself.  The level of continued education, experience, desire to stay current with technology, and if you can trust him or her is what will help you get your money’s worth and get many more benefits in the long run. You want to develop a relationship with your doctor that will help you achieve and maintain your oral health for a lifetime, not just for the time of your appointment. And that is what we do every day and love it!