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Archive for October, 2012

Tooth Colored Fillings: Enjoy a more natural looking smile

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

dentist 60614One of the best inventions in the world of dentistry is that of composite resin used to repair tooth decay, chipped teeth, intrinsic stains … anywhere tooth colored composite resin can make the correction, we can turn to our dentist for treatment.

For many years the material dentists relied on to repair dental decay was made from dental amalgam, which appeared silver on application and turned a very drab gray over time. Many people today are opting to replace those silver fillings with the more attractive composite resin. And with the variety of tooth colored shades available, dental repairs become virtually undetectable.

In addition to the material used for bonding and dental fillings, dentists are utilizing porcelain ceramic for crowns or veneers to provide a more natural looking smile.

The reason for this change in dental philosophy is twofold – first of all, aesthetics – the beauty of a tooth colored repair versus some type of metal is much more attractive.

Secondly, dentists have found that the use of composite adds strength to the tooth being repaired.

Another advantage to the use of composite resin to repair tooth decay is much less of the patient’s tooth must be removed versus a filling with dental amalgam. The components in the resin adhere to the tooth rather than having to pack the area with metal.

In one visit to the dentist, the decay will be removed, a dental adhesive will be applied and very thin layers of the composite resin will slowly be added. With each layer, the area is hardened with a laser or curing light. After the filling is completed, the area is checked to make sure the bite is correct and the tooth colored filling is polished to match the rest of the tooth.

Dental decay, particularly in the smile line, is repaired and only the patient knows there is a filling in place. For fillings in back teeth where chewing pressure is the strongest, there are dental options available that also provide the same aesthetic properties as the tooth colored fillings.

It is important to note that tooth colored fillings are more than just a cosmetic improvement. Composite resin contains no mercury, which is a toxic component used in silver amalgam. So when given a choice, it would seem clear that the best option is composite resin.

If you are in need of a filling and would like a more natural looking option, call ORA Dental Studio, serving Chicago and surrounding areas, today to schedule an appointment.

What Do Your Teeth Say About Your Health?

Monday, October 15th, 2012

When you open your mouth to speak, smile or laugh, do your teeth reflect a person who obviously cares about excellent dental health or do you personify someone who has put good dental health on the back burner? If you fall into the second category, a visit with your dentist can put you on the fast track to becoming that healthy, self-confident person you want to be!

A professional cleaning and exam is the first step to identifying the changes you might pursue.

Chipped, broken, stained or missing teeth do not portray a healthy individual. First of all, people suffering from any of these ailments may not smile or laugh due to embarrassment. Even eating in public may be curtailed.

You might ask what a simple visit to the dentist can do to make the changes you feel are needed? After all, cosmetic dentistry is only for wealthy people, right?  Fortunately,  in today’s dentistry, everyone has an option.

A professional cleaning and exam is the first step to identifying the changes you might pursue. Over time, teeth can become dull from wear and tear, lifestyle habits or ineffective brushing and flossing.

Steps you and your dentist might take to improve your dental health and give you a smile makeover might include:

  • Teeth whitening – take years off your appearance merely by whitening and brightening your smile.
  • Intrinsic stains from medication or fluorosis – Teeth whitening might not eliminate deep set stains, but you can cover those stains through bonding with tooth colored composite resin.
  • Uneven, misshapen teeth; unsightly gaps between teeth; cracked or chipped teeth – In the past, it might take years of treatment to resolve these issues. Now, thanks to dental veneers, these problems can disappear in a few brief visits with your dentist.
  • Tooth loss – Losing one or several teeth to trauma, decay or disease can be upsetting. There are many solutions from a partial denture to dental implants and many choices in between.

Feeling good about yourself and your appearance may encourage you to treat yourself better. Improve your diet, get more exercise, drink more water … all of these things will enhance your body’s health as well as promote good dental health.

Excellent dental health will most certainly enhance overall good health.

If you are in need of a professional cleaning or dental exam, or have questions about your overall dental health, call ORA Dental Studio, serving the 60611 area, at 312-328-9007 to schedule an appointment.

Receding Gums: Are dental implants still an option?

Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

dental implants ChicagoGum tissue may recede for many reasons. Age, brushing with too firm of a toothbrush or excessive pressure, genetics, lifestyle habits or gum disease can all contribute to what appears to be “shrinking gums”,  or our teeth are getting longer. Whatever the reason, gum recession can be treated and depending on the cause you may still be a candidate for dental implants.

Dental implants are made with titanium that is surgically placed into gum tissue where one has sustained tooth loss. There are several conditions that must be met before your implant dentist would move forward with this procedure:

  • Overall health – The patient will be asked to provide information pertaining to their general health. Disease or illnesses that impact the immune system are carefully reviewed as this can have a significant bearing on the success of the implant procedure.
  • Dental health – Patients that suffer with periodontal disease are at a much greater risk of implant failure. Insufficient bone strength to support a dental implant is the primary reason. That is not to say that implants cannot be done, but preliminary steps may be required such as bone regeneration in the gum tissue.
  • Lifestyle habits – Smoking and tobacco use are a leading cause of implant failure and gum disease so the patient is strongly urged to quite before embarking on dental implants.
  • Commitment – Dental implants can take up to one year from start to finish. Understanding what is required up front will increase the odds of success. Being prepared to take care of the implant by flossing and brushing to keep the implant area free from infection is critical.

Gum recession may be an indicator of periodontal disease, but it not an absolute diagnosis. Gum disease occurs when bacteria forms on teeth and permeates healthy gum tissue. Left untreated, these bacteria can lead to dental decay and eventually loss of the bone tissue that keeps teeth firmly in place.

Treatment such as a deep cleaning to remove plaque and tartar from beneath the gum line or dental surgery for more serious cases may be recommended.

Preventing gum disease and recession is certainly possible through daily flossing and careful brushing. Whether or not you are susceptible to periodontitis, make sure you obtain a professional dental cleaning and exam at least twice per year to catch problems before they can escalate.

If you are suffering from receding gums and would like pursue treatment, contact  ORA Dental Studio in Chicago to schedule an appointment.