Colony Square Dental Associates

‘Tis the Season for Giving Back | CSDA Partners with Dress for Success

As the year comes to an end, our dental family is preparing for all of the traditional holiday festivities. No matter if you are celebrating Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Festivus, or otherwise, the most important thing is that you’re spending valuable time with close family and friends.

From our spring continuing education classes at Hinman, to our trip to California in September for the American Dental Association (ADA) seminar, we have successfully kept up with the ever-changing dental technologies on the market. And we are excited to share what we have learned with all of you in 2020.

But, as we reflect on the last 12 months, we know that we couldn’t be the family-style dental practice that we are, without our loyal patients and staff members. Each and every one of you has contributed to molding Colony Square Dental Associates into the dental practice we are today. For that, we are incredibly thankful. And because of your continued loyalty, we are able to give back to the community each year.

This year we teamed up with Dress for Success Atlanta to support their mission in preparing ladies in need with the right tools to re-enter the workplace. After speaking with Candice, a coordinating volunteer, we understood that they needed undergarments in all shapes and sizes. In true CSDA fashion, our office team was whisked off to shop for “the girls.” It was no easy task finding some of the unique sizes, but we have quite the competitive bunch who got the job done!

The bins at the donation center are empty no longer and it does our hearts good knowing we were able to help so many women acquire the confidence they deserve. We often take for granted the little things that make a life-changing difference to others who may not have access or the means to get them.

So this holiday, Drs. Hochberg and Diora would like to wish you all a healthy, prosperous, and fulfilled season surrounded by joy and love. Spread kindness as often as you can. And don’t forget to enjoy the delicious goodies guilt-free (as long as you brush and floss, of course.)

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

Keeping your Breath Fresh

Keeping your Breath Fresh?

Hummus with garlic tastes great! So do tuna fish sandwiches and burgers loaded with onions on top Pure joy! However, we know there’s a price to pay by eating certain foods – the potential for bad breath. We enjoy our favorites and then run to brush our teeth, use a mouthwash or grab a piece of gum. Once the remaining offending food particles are washed away and some time has passed, typically the bad breath has resolved. But not always.

Many factors can contribute to frequent occurrences of chronic bad breath, halitosis, some of which are harmless to one’s overall health, others are symptoms of underlying medical issues and some are side effects from certain medications.

Causes of Bad Breath

Food Choices

As stated, on occasion everyone can have less than fresh breath. Foods react to the ever-present bacteria in the oral cavity. Keep eating the foods that are known culprits and the bad=breath remains. Stop eating them and it goes away. While no one wants to offend with bad breath, sometimes those onion rings just call our name. It’s not harmful to our health; it’s merely a ‘social issue’.

Dental Disease

When halitosis occurs frequently and it’s not related to food intake, further investigation is necessary to determine the underlying cause or causes. Visit your dentist. The problem could be dental disease. Both cavities and gum disease are known to cause an unpleasant oral odor. The reason? The bacteria that cause bad breath are more difficult to brush or floss away when there are pockets between the teeth and the gum tissue or when a void – a cavity – exits in the tooth’s structure. Restoring the tooth with a filling and/or improving the health of the gums not only removes the dental disease – there’s also the plus of eliminating this as the cause of bad breath.

Dry mouth

Saliva, which serves as the mouth’s bathing agent, washes away harmful bacteria. It helps break down our food and protects our teeth. When the amount of saliva production is insufficient, for whatever reason, bad breath is often a result. There are many causes for dry mouth, (xerostomia). Some are easy to identify – smoking, caffeine intake or alcohol consumption. By avoiding, or at least limiting these substances, the saliva production can return to normal levels.

But dry mouth can be a symptom of many medical conditions. While there may be a blockage in the salivary glands, there are many illnesses, seemingly unrelated to the oral cavity, which exhibit symptoms, such as dry mouth, in the mouth. It is important to first determine whether the cause is an undiagnosed medical problem. Allergy and sinus sufferers with a post-nasal drip and patients with gastric reflux find that bad breath is common. Other illnesses, such as diabetes, liver or kidney diseases need to be ruled as well. And, of course, once diagnosed, these conditions need to be treated.

Another cause of dry mouth is medications. Many medications, necessary to help us fight disease, cause is reduction in the body’s production of saliva. They may have a dehydrating effect. The good news is that there are many over-the-counter medications to help eliminate dry mouth. Drs. Hochberg and Diora are happy to offer recommendations and oftentimes have samples on hand for you to try. Not only do these products help increase your comfort level, but also by alleviating the dryness your breath will be fresher.

What is the best way to eliminate bad breath?

Once all medical and dental issues have been addressed and there is nothing left undiagnosed or untreated, there are effective ways to have fresher breath. To begin, be sure that you are following a good home healthcare regimen. Ask your dental hygienist to suggest the best products for you. Then be sure to brush and floss at least twice a day. Keep that timer on! Remember the two-minute rule of 30 seconds per each quadrant of your mouth. Limit your intake of caffeinated drinks; they reduce the production of saliva. Increase water consumption. Chew a sugar-free gum after a meal; the activity increases saliva production while removing much of the remaining food particles until you can brush. Swish a mouthwash; it helps neutralize odors.

The main take away? At some point in time everyone will have an unwelcome occurrence of bad breath. However, if the problem persists it’s important to investigate further. Be sure that it’s not a telltale sign of an underlying dental or medical problem. Visit us a Colony Square Dental Associates; we’re available to evaluate the status of your oral health to ensure that dental decay or periodontal (gum) disease is not the culprit.

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September is “Dental Implant Awareness Month”

Choosing an Implant Dentist

Though for many decades dental implants have been a widely accepted treatment option, today more and more patients are seeking out qualified dental implant healthcare providers for care. Considered state-of-the-art dentistry – an alternative to bridges or dentures – dental implants replace one or more missing teeth. So prevalent is this treatment modality, September 2019, has been designated Dental Implant Awareness Month by the preeminent dental implant organization, the American Academy of Implant dentistry (AAID). It’s time set aside time to focus on raising the public’s understanding of the benefits of implants.

While most would expect that the number one question asked is, “What is a dental implant?”, that’s not the case. With TV advertising and the amount of information readily available on the Internet, the big question the general public now asks is, “How do I select the best dentist to provide me with dental implants?” Selecting a healthcare provider, for any procedure, can be a daunting task. We ask friends, relatives, read reviews and Google away so we can make the best-informed decision. We take into account the clinician’s training, expertise, and more often than not, their credentials. While a decades old, and widely accepted treatment modality, there is not a dental specialty in ‘Implantology’ as there is for Endodontics or Oral Surgery. It then becomes incumbent upon the patient interested in learning about replacement of a missing tooth or teeth with dental implants to do their homework. There is a significant difference in training between a dentist who takes a weekend course compared to one with years of training who has passed the rigorous testing criteria required to become credentialed from a well-recognized educational organization.

For over 67 years, the leader and the oldest academy that provides dentists with training in Implantology is The American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID). Dentists who have expertise in both the surgical placement of dental implants and the restoration of the implants are uniquely qualified to provide not only the technical proficiency to place an implant, he or she does so with the understanding of how the final restoration of the implant or implants will work functionally, so their patient is able to chew in comfort. And, equally important, they have the skill needed to incorporate the implant into an esthetically pleasing smile – one their patient is proud to share. Dr. David G. Hochberg is such a dentist. With a Diplomate in the ABOI and Fellow in the AAID, along with over 35 years of providing both the surgical and restorative phases of care for his patients along with patients of referring dentists, Dr. Hochberg is sought out for his diagnostic capabilities, comprehensive approach to care, both his surgical and restorative skills and, as important, his ability to understand the unique needs, concerns and expectations of patients. And, after serving on the board of the AAID, last year as its president, he understands the importance of helping educate the public on all aspects of dental implant care.

When you stop to ask yourself who you should see, consider scheduling an evaluation with Dr. Hochberg and raise your awareness of the benefits of Implant Dentistry.

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Is chewing gum good for your dental health?

Can chewing gum be healthy?

There have been several clinical studies showing that chewing sugarless gum for at least 20 minutes following meals can aid in helping fight against tooth decay. When you chew sugarless gum, it increases the flow of saliva in the mouth and helps wash away food particles. Increased amounts of saliva, which contains the disease-fighting substances of calcium and phosphate, is carried throughout the mouth serving to strengthen tooth enamel as it washes away harmful bacteria and debris and neutralizes cavity-causing acids.

What kind of chewing gum is best for your teeth?

Patients ask Drs. Hochberg & Diora, and our team of dental hygienists, which chewing gum is best. Be sure to look for the American Dental Association (ADA) Seal on the wrapper to ensure that you are purchasing a truly sugar-free gum. Most commonly, the sugar-free gums approved by the ADA contain the following as non-cavity producing sweeteners:  aspartame, xylitol, sorbitol or mannitol. These sugars are commonly referred to as sugar alcohols.

What exactly are sugar alcohols? Sugar alcohols are naturally occurring acids that are found in some foods; they typically come from fruits and berries. Many consumers choose these sweeteners, as they want fewer calories. Sugar alcohols can contain about a half to a third less calories than regular sugar. But, it’s not only our waistline that dictates selecting sugar-free chewing gum. Oftentimes gums that are not sugar-free contain sugars, preservatives, dyes, and artificial flavorings, which are slowly released into the mouth. When they mix with saliva, like all sugars, this liquid bath becomes one of the prime contributors to the development of dental decay.

Are there risks in chewing gum, even if it’s sugar-free?

There is such a thing as ‘too much of a good thing’. And it’s the same with chewing any gum. In excess, gum chewing, even if it doesn’t contain cavity-causing sugars, can be problematic to certain individuals. After a meal is finished and our stomach has processed the food, it rests. If gum chewing takes place for extended time periods, the stomach doesn’t have the opportunity to take a break; it’s still working hard to process the excess salvia produced during gum chewing. This can create stomach issues. And, there are those who are allergic or sensitive to artificial sweeteners. They are not all the same and care must be taken in selecting one that agrees with your digestive system. And, let’s not forget the jaw joint. Many have experienced times when their TMJ (temporomandibular joint) is painful, called TMD (temporomandibular joint dysfunction). Gum chewing can cause, or exacerbate the problem.

So, while chewing sugarless gum for short time periods – instead of regular gum – can decrease the risk dental cavities, like everything, it should not be in excess. And it does not take the place of a healthy diet, avoidance of sugary drinks and foods, or a home health care regimen that includes regular twice a day brushing, with fluoridated toothpaste, and flossing. And, of course, periodic dental examinations, oral cancer screenings and dental hygiene visits with your Colony Square Dental Associates’ hygienist, round out the picture.

Is Flossing Helpful or Harmful?

Is Flossing Helpful or Harmful?


You can count on hearing, ‘don’t forget to brush and floss’ during visits to the dentist, on oral health educational videos and on TV. You may wonder why and when this refrain took hold and the reasons your dentist and hygienist stress the importance of this home healthcare routine.

Surprising though it may be, the practice of flossing isn’t new. There is evidence that even prehistoric man had a mechanism to remove foods from between their teeth. And while it’s been over two hundred years since an American dentist first introduced packaged flossing to the public, the toothpick was the #1 choice to remove those stubborn particles until the end of WW II. While the first flosses were made out of a silk thread, typically today’s floss is made from waxed or non-waxed nylon.

Why does the dental profession stress flossing along with brushing?

The majority of oral healthcare professionals began advising patients to floss for health reasons, not merely to remove a lodged popcorn kernel or a piece of lettuce from between our teeth. After years of research, dentists were provided scientific data to better understand the causes of decay, gum inflammation, periodontal disease, and bone loss. As our oral healthcare knowledge base grew, products, such as floss, were introduced to help prevent or mitigate the causes of dental disease. This became increasingly important as more recent research studies provided additional evidence showing the correlation between oral health and diabetes, heart disease and even cancers. Maintaining one’s oral health not only puts a happy, healthy smile on your face but also serves to enhance your general wellbeing.

Where does floss fit in the discussion of oral health? Brushing is important. It helps clean the surfaces of our teeth, but a toothbrush, even an electric, does not fully reach in between the teeth – spaces where it’s easier for these bacterial colonies to coalesce. This is where flossing comes into play. Bacteria live in our mouths. And that’s okay. In fact, there are hundreds upon hundreds of strains of bacteria; and each individual’s oral bacterial makeup is different. Most strains of oral bacteria do not pose a problem. But there are types that do. Sugars and starches, even found in many healthier foods, pose problems. It’s those carbohydrates. There is a type of oral bacteria that enjoys carbs as much or more than we do. The problem is that this bacterial strain, as it feeds on these substances, produces lactic acid that is known to dissolve the enamel of your tooth’s surface – one of the primary causes of dental decay. Other strains, though not as prevalent, are known to impact the health of the bone tissue of the jaw. With all these bacteria, our goal is to educate you on the techniques available to help prevent the ‘bad’ bacteria from forming colonies of harmful sticky substances. Floss breaks up the soft and sticky bacterial plaque. When our saliva does not wash it away and brushing does not reach all surfaces, this substance will adhere to the tooth’s surface. Left undisturbed, the production of lactic acid from the colonies of bacteria dissolve the enamel of the tooth surface. The result? The potential for tooth decay. Also, when plaque is not removed, in combination with products found in our saliva, it calcifies. This hard substance, calculus, if not removed regularly, cause gum tissue inflammation – leading to periodontal disease and potential bone loss. It’s the combination of brushing and flossing that disrupts the bacteria, stops the formation of the sticky substances and helps prevent the damaging build up. A good thing!

Why the recent hype about: ‘no need to floss’ or ‘flossing is harmful to your health’?

If flossing does all this hard work for us, why the recent articles? We don’t always have a definitive study that says that if you do ‘A’ you will be assured that ‘B’ will occur. There is not, as yet, fully definitive evidence-based research showing that if you floss you will not get cavities. But we do know that it makes sense as it removes harmful substances and reduces the buildup of cavity-causing plaque. And there is evidence-based research findings that flossing is beneficial in reducing the risk of gum diseases (and hence potential bone loss), which is a good enough reason in itself to floss. Just ask Drs. Hochberg and Diora. After years of practicing, they along with the preponderance of dentists and hygienists, have observed that the patients who brush AND floss regularly, present with healthier gums and teeth. As Karen, one of our hygienists of over 25 years at Colony Square Dental Associates says, “From my observation, patients that do floss have healthier gum tissue in comparison to those who do not. Patients that do not floss typically have bleeding and inflamed gum tissue. Water flossers are also effective and can help aid in keeping your oral health up to par.” And, what about articles asking, Is flossing dangerous? There was a small study that was released earlier this year reporting that women using a popular waxed floss were found to have higher levels of a specific type of PFAS (a chemical used to coat the floss). After reviewing the study the American Dental Association (ADA) determined that the cause and effect finding was not conclusive – as this chemical is found in the air, the water and even fast food containers. While further study is certainly warranted, according to the ADA Statement: “Study Involving Dental Floss”, released on January 14, 2019:


            “PTFE is often used in food and beverage, pharmaceutical, and cosmetic applications. The fact that the researchers were able to find the PTFE marker in several brands of floss does not mean that it is the source of the PFHxS in the women. Given that this was a retrospective study including self-reported use of products, there are likely many other differences between women who did and did not report having used the brand of floss mentioned. The ADA sees no cause for concern based on current evidence, and above all continues to encourage people to clean between their teeth daily with floss or other interdental cleaners as part of the ADA’s daily oral hygiene recommendations. 


At Colony Square Dental Associates we still say, “May the Floss be with You!”

The jury may still be out on whether waxed floss actually contains this chemical. And if it does, it is yet to be determined whether the chemical is released from the floss and ingested or whether it poses a risk. But, this is not an excuse to stop flossing! You may wish to read more about this topic before continuing with your current brand of floss. We encourage you to do so. And feel free to discuss alternatives with Drs. Hochberg, Diora and our hygienists – Karen, Cheryl & Gina. There are various options to break up the buildup of harmful bacteria on and between the teeth and at the gum line. Some floss is manufactured without chemical coatings and, as Karen says, there are other interdental devices such as the WaterPik®. So, we stand by the same old, same old mantra: Brush – twice a day! And Floss – at least once a day!


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When Is The Last Time You Checked Your Tongue?

When Is The Last Time You checked Your Tongue?

When you brushed your teeth this morning did you look at your tongue? If you answered no…it’s okay. Although we know oral health is important, many are unaware of the importance of examining their tongue.

The tongue is one of the most vital barometers to one’s oral health. Your tongue can serve as a detection tool, alerting you of health issues occurring inside of your body. At Colony Square Dental Associates, Drs. Hochberg and Diora examine the tongue of each patient they see; they know that an oral examination is not complete without a thorough evaluation of the top surface – and the undersurface – of this important muscular organ.

What does a healthy tongue look like?

If your oral hygiene isn’t up to par oftentimes symptoms are evident on the tongue. A healthy tongue will appear bright pink with small white nodes (little dots) throughout. Although tongues do come in all shapes and sizes, your tongue should not appear to be swollen nor should it protrude from your mouth.

What diseases can show symptoms on the tongue?

There are numerous diseases that Dr. Hochberg, Dr. Diora, and our dental hygienists are on the lookout for. They can be the result of stressors, infections or medications. The most frequently seen ailments are listed below.

Thrush: Thrush is an infection of the mouth caused by Candida fungus or yeast. Thrush occurs most commonly as a side effect of medications such as antibiotics or corticosteroids. The prescriptions affect the PH balance in your body. It is also seen in those with immune systems that are weaker, such as toddlers, those with cancer, or persons under stress. Indicators of thrush are white patches or a creamy white substance on the tongue that resembles cottage cheese. If you notice anything similar to the symptoms described, call us immediately. We will schedule for an examination to diagnose and provide treatment.

Vitamin Deficiency: Take your vitamins! Your daily vitamin intake plays a major role in your oral health. If you notice your diet doesn’t include all of the recommended vitamins, your tongue will be sure to let you know. A bright red tongue that appears smooth and may be a bit uncomfortable could be an indicator that you may be deficient in certain vitamins such as folic acid, iron or B vitamins.

Oral Cancer: Sores that don’t heal, pain, odd discoloring and chronic issues with swallowing or chewing, should not be neglected as these are possible signs of oral cancer. If any of these issues persist for longer than a week be sure to check in with your dentist. Don’t let symptoms linger! Be vigilant. If you notice changes, seek a professionals opinion. Early diagnosis and care save lives!

You are the best person to act as the first line of defense. When your brush and floss your teeth in the morning and evening, add a step to your home oral healthcare regimen. Scrape any residue off your tongue. This is buildup on your tongue, with unwanted bacteria, contributes to bad breath. As you do so, look at your tongue. Check the front, the back and the top of the tongue’s surface. Stick your tongue out. Do you notice any changes, growths, discolorations, and patches? Lift up your tongue. Look underneath. Any concerns?

As we finish April’s National Oral Cancer Awareness month, it’s critical to remember the word ‘awareness’. This month and every month hereafter, make it your mission to pay close attention to the signs your tongue is giving you. If you feel like you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, please call. Our goal is to help you stay healthy.

Early Detection Of Oral Cancer

Early Detection Of Oral Cancer

It’s time for your dental spring cleaning!

The month of April not only signifies the beginning of Spring, but it also is Oral Cancer Awareness month. As you start your spring-cleaning at home, be sure that you have scheduled your dental spring screening as well. Oral cancer affects almost 50,000 Americans each year. By visiting your dentist regularly, Drs. Hochberg and Diora can help detect any early signs of this deadly disease.


What you need to know

Research has identified a number of factors that are considered contributors to the development of oral cancer. Through time and study, researchers found that those at especially high risk of developing oral cancer have been  drinkers and smokers over the age of 50. However, today there are also concerns related to the potential risk of oral cancer in the younger generation. A new form of inhaling nicotine, vaping, has harmful chemicals which are yet to be tested and could be cancer causing. Another contributing factor is the human papillomavirus 16 (HPV), which has been identified as a factor in the rise of oropharyngeal (oral)cancer.  HPV attacks the tonsillar tissue, including the base of tongue, in our younger populations which can potentially lead to the development of oral cancer. It’s extremely important to note that oral cancer can affect anyone no matter the age; being vigilant in your oral healthcare routines and daily habits can help.


What are the signs to look for?

  • Continous soreness or irritation
  • Thick skin tissues, lumps, rough spots, crusty areas
  • Pain, red or white patches inside of the mouth or lips
  • Difficulty chewing, swallowing, speaking
  • Issues with jaw function

If you notice any of the symptoms above – don’t wait. It’s always better to, ‘be safe than sorry’. Early detection increases the opportunity to provide care when needed! The early the diagnosis, the better the prognosis. And at Colony Square Dental Associates, oral cancer awareness is an integral part of every examination.



Continuing our Dental Education

Continuing Our Dental Education

At Colony Square Dental Associates


For over 30 years we have done our utmost to provide our patients with quality dental care in a comfortable environment. This entails not only the smiles our front office team and clinicians sport every day and their caring nature, but also includes our ability to offer state-of-the-art dental services.

Dr. Hochberg at the Glidewell booth.

Hygienists Cheryl, Karen and Gina

As with all aspects of our healthcare, new information related to our oral health is frequently updated and augmented. And on TV and in the drug stores we see new products that are developed to help prevent cavities, brighten our teeth, protect the enamel of our teeth and so on. And, equally as important, products and techniques are enhanced frequently providing Drs. Hochberg & Diora with the tools to both optimize your oral health and enhance the aesthetics of your smile.



Front office team Sharon, Mariah, Lori and Tiffany.

But, to be kept abreast of all that is available in the dental field takes a commitment – a commitment to putting time and energies into continuing dental education.We, at Colony Square Dental Associates, are pleased to say that we regularly attend courses approved by the American Dental Association as one way to learn about the ‘latest and greatest’ so that we can offer you optimal dentistry. Just last week our clinicians and business team members attended the annual Hinman Dental Meeting held each year in Atlanta. They will be happy to share their new knowledge with you.

National Children’s Dental Health Month | How to Ensure Your Child Has a Lifetime of Healthy Smiles

Annually in our office, and in many offices around the country, February is recognized and celebrated as National Children’s Dental Health Month (NCDHM.) From the time a child’s first tooth comes in, it is important to begin a daily hygiene routine and schedule their introductory appointment at the dentist. Beginning dental visits at the early age of one, helps with making both child and parent comfortable.

Although it’s commonly referred to as a “ride in the dental chair”, there are a lot of very important tasks being completed at this appointment. The doctor will review the child’s medical history, complete an oral exam to check growth and development, evaluate risk for tooth decay, and determine if he or she is getting the correct amount of fluoride. This is also a great opportunity to discuss with the parent the importance of primary teeth, the eruption process, as well as teething, pacifier use, and finger or thumb sucking habits. To conclude the visit, a dental hygienist may apply fluoride as necessary and the child will be given a toothbrush and a gift to commemorate their first session.

Once the initial relationship is established, we like to continue influencing children to maintain healthy practices even well after they are brushing their own teeth. This is implemented in their bi-annual visits, however, we also make time during NCDHM to visit schools in our area and speak to the students. We typically prepare a small child-friendly presentation that includes hands-on learning. The teachers are provided with posters from the American Dental Association (ADA) highlighting the NCDHM theme.


This year we had the pleasure of visiting Primrose School of Midtown located in Colony Square. We spoke to their 4 and 5 year old students on the importance of a healthy smile. They learned how a toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, and mouthwash all contribute to pearly whites and help to remove the cavity causing “sugar bugs.” Each student received a goodie back with a poster-sized reminder to brush, as well as an activity worksheet, a toothbrush, smile stickers, an informative brochure, and a letter to parents informing them of our presentation. If you’d like us to visit your child’s school please let us know! We are always open to exploring new opportunities with schools in our community.

A Year of Things to Smile About

Last January, we created a social media campaign in honor of the late, Dr. Richard Sugarman, to benefit the Ben Massell Dental Clinic. Located here in Midtown, Ben Massell has provided state-of-the-art comprehensive dental care to those in the community who need it most. The clinic has been serving the Atlanta area for over 100 years. Dr. Hochberg is one of many dentists who volunteer on a consistent basis, allowing Ben Massell to treat thousands of patients each year.

The campaign asked that our patients and visitors like or share our monthly Facebook video posts. For each like or share, our office pledged to donate $3 toward the clinic fund. We are ecstatic to say by end of December, we were able to write a check for over six thousand dollars! This is huge and was only made possible because of each one of you. Thank you from all of us at TEAM CSDA!