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Archive for August, 2011

What is the purpose of a dental crown?

Friday, August 26th, 2011

dental crown ChicagoA dental crown, or cap, can serve many purposes. Generally speaking, a crown is a permanent restoration that covers or surrounds the portion of the tooth that you can see above the gums. If you suspect that you could benefit from dental crowns in Chicago, it is important to understand their purpose.

When a tooth’s strength has been compromised due to severe decay, a fracture, or a large filling, dental crowns are used to hold the tooth together. Crowns can be utilized to prevent a weak tooth from breaking unexpectedly.

When a tooth has already been damaged, such as cracked or broken tooth, crowns can be used to restore the tooth to its original shape and size.

Following a root canal procedure, teeth can become brittle and often break easily. These non-vital teeth are almost always routinely crowned soon after the root canal for added protection and strength.

A dental implant is a titanium post that is inserted into the jaw bone to replace a missing tooth root. To complete the restorative process, dental crowns are used to replace the lost biting surface.

Teeth that are severely stained (such as Tetracycline staining), or developmentally abnormal (such as peg laterals or retained primary teeth) can be reshaped or resized for cosmetic reasons.

Esthetics is just as important as function. Full ceramic crowns can be used for the most natural appearance. The porcelain material, with no metal base, allows more light to pass through the tooth, creating a more translucent and natural-looking tooth.

If you believe that you could be better served by a crown, call 312-328-9007 to speak with our experienced team of dental professionals today.

Why is Oral Cancer Screening so important?

Tuesday, August 16th, 2011

One of the benefits of your routine dental visits is the opportunity to be screened for oral cancer. Our dentists and staff can provide a wealth of information beyond the typical toothbrush and toothpaste discussion. The main goal of your visit should be preventative dental treatment. With comprehensive treatment and a focus on prevention, our dentists and staff are trained to evaluate all of the structures of your head, neck, face, and mouth for any signs of disease. You may have thought that cavities and gum disease were the most troublesome dental diseases. Unfortunately, oral cancer is a far more dangerous dental disease that can be easy to ignore.

As you schedule your next visit with our dentist in West Loop, ask about oral cancer screening. Just as x-rays are used to screen the teeth for cavities, and probing is used to screen the gums for gum disease, our dentists have tools to screen for oral cancer. A review of your medical history, a visual examination, x-rays, and manual palpation are all utilized during your visit to identify any signs of cancer. As with any form of cancer or disease, early detection is the key to appropriate treatment and a favorable outcome.

It’s easy to understand how lifestyle habits such as tobacco use and chronic alcohol use can increase your risk for oral cancer. But research has shown that even some health conditions such as common viral infections can increase your risk of developing cancer. Even more surprising, a whopping 25% of oral cancer patients have no lifestyle or medical risk factors at all. That translates into one out of every four oral cancer victims could not have predicted this disease’s impact on their life.

To complicate the matter further, oral cancer often begins with few or no obvious symptoms. Patients do not generally notice pain or discomfort. In the mouth and throat, where visibility is limited, self examination can be difficult to impossible. Often, by the time a patient is able to identify any signs or symptoms, the disease has progressed to a far more critical stage.

Schedule your appointment today and talk to our experienced dentists about oral cancer screening.

How can I benefit from a smile makeover?

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011

cosmetic dentistry ChicagoAny patient who has chosen cosmetic dentistry to improve their smile can tell you that it’s a choice that can also improve your life. Feeling confident about your smile can naturally cause you to smile more often. For many patients, the benefits don’t stop there. Your open, confident smile can change the way that others perceive you.  Research has shown that your smile can subconsciously trigger those around you to smile as well, even if they don’t know what they’re smiling about!

The range and versatility of cosmetic dental procedures is endless. More popular procedures such as porcelain veneers, teeth whitening, and dental implants can be used to improve virtually any smile. During your consultation for cosmetic dentistry in Chicago, think about the aspects of your smile that matter most to you.

Would you love a whiter, brighter smile? Have you considered straightening your teeth? Do you feel that your teeth are too long, or too short? Does your gum line appear even when you smile? Do you desire a smile that is free of gaps and spaces? Would you like to replace missing teeth?

It is often helpful to use pictures from magazines, advertisements, and personal photos to help identify your main concerns. As you consult with your cosmetic dentist about your personal goals, you may find that many of the smiles that you prefer have been achieved using a combination of popular procedures.

The benefits of a smile makeover can often be more significant than just a pretty picture. Sometimes, improving your smile can also improve your chewing capacity, as with dental implants. In other cases, reconstructing your smile can improve your dental hygiene. Teeth that are straighter and more uniform, achieved with porcelain veneers, are generally easier to clean. Many patients have even found that teeth whitening is a good incentive to quit smoking!

If you have wondered about cosmetic dentistry, contact our Chicago office at 312-328-9007 to schedule an appointment for your consultation today. Our cosmetic dentistry team can recommend the procedures that are right for you.