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Archive for September, 2016

Porcelain Veneers as An Alternative for Braces

Monday, September 26th, 2016

porcelain veneers ChicagoMany patients don’t realize that they don’t necessarily need to spend years in braces in order to get a straighter smile. In some cases, porcelain veneers can achieve the same effect in a couple of weeks!

Porcelain veneers are only suitable for mildly misaligned teeth, so you should have a cosmetic dentist evaluate your case to see if this treatment would help you achieve your smile goals or whether you might be better served by conventional orthodontic treatment.

If porcelain veneers can be used to create the illusion of a straighter smile for you, the treatment process begins at the initial consultation. The cosmetic dentist will gather pertinent information that is used to influence the design of your veneers, which are custom-crafted to meet your smile’s unique specifications. This may require dental impressions, photographs or X-rays.

You have a significant amount of input in the design of your porcelain veneers. Be upfront with your dentist regarding the shade and shape of your veneers so that you get want you want.

At this initial consultation, your teeth may also be prepped for veneer placement if a thin layer of enamel needs to be removed to make room for the veneers. While waiting for your permanent veneers, you can wear temporary ones to preserve your smile’s appearance.

When the veneers are ready, you’ll return to the dentist’s office to have them adjusted further if you desire and then bonded to your teeth.

After the veneers are bonded to your teeth, their appearance cannot be altered in any way, so it’s important that you are satisfied with the veneers before they are placed on your teeth. Furthermore, if you want to whiten your smile, you should have that treatment done before the veneers are placed, as veneers do not respond to teeth whitening and you want to be sure that the veneers match your biological teeth!

There may be no need to tolerate orthodontic appliances for 18 months or more in order to get a straighter-looking smile. Call our office, Ora Dental Studio, to schedule an evaluation and see whether porcelain veneers might help you get the smile you want!

4 Things You Need to Know About Your Dental Checkups

Friday, September 16th, 2016

dentist 60602Do you seem to struggle to fit in dental checkups among all of the other items on your lengthy to-do list? These routine appointments are essential for maintaining your oral health and your overall well-being, so don’t be tempted to procrastinate on getting your smile examined and cleaned. Here are four things you need to know about these checkups:

You really do need to see the dentist for exams and professional cleanings every six months: Even if you brush and floss religiously, plaque and tartar can still accumulate on your teeth. There are parts of your smile that it’s much easier for a hygienist to reach and clean more thoroughly than you can. Furthermore, when professionals inspect your teeth and gums for signs of cavities and gum disease on a regular basis, it’s easier to detect these conditions in their earliest stages, when they can be treated most easily.

You also need to get X-rays yearly: Some of the surfaces of your teeth, such as where two teeth meet, can’t be inspected by your dentist without X-rays. This imaging can help to detect “hidden” cavities before they become large enough to do major damage to your smile. The annual X-rays also can be used to identify problems with your jaws that might not otherwise be noticed.

Routine exams can save your life: Dental exams include oral cancer screenings. Again, when the mouth is monitored every six months, a suspicious spot can be identified when it is still small, before it has a chance to spread to surrounding structures. Oral cancer has a very good prognosis when it is diagnosed and treated before it metastasizes.

Checkups and cleanings shouldn’t hurt: Unfortunately, patients sometimes postpone routine care out of fear of the dentist. But this fear is unwarranted. You should not experience any discomfort from having your teeth cleaned or examined.

Have more questions about your routine dental care? Speak to one of our knowledgeable staff members to get the info you need – and schedule your next checkup if it’s been more than six months since your last one.

How Closely Do Dental Implants Mimic a Natural Tooth

Monday, September 5th, 2016

dental implants ChicagoDental implants are the most technologically advanced tooth replacement devices available to patients who have suffered tooth loss. This treatment option provides the only structurally complete tooth replacement, consisting of both an artificial root, which is the dental implant itself, and a prosthetic crown.

After a dental implant is placed in a patient’s jaw, the surrounding bone forms a bond with the implant’s titanium surface. This process, known as osseointegration, leaves the implant as a root-like structure in the jaw.

Because dental implants have a form quite similar to a natural tooth, they preserve much of the functionality of the missing biological tooth. Most importantly, dental implants help to maintain the integrity of the jawbone. After tooth loss, the root of the missing tooth is no longer available to anchor the jawbone and it erodes as a result. So, with tooth replacement appliances that only replace the crown – like bridges and dentures – the jawbone’s shape changes over time and the appliance loses its fit.

In contrast, prosthetic crowns, bridges or dentures that are supported by dental implants do not lose their fit due to jawbone atrophy. Therefore, an implant-supported crown or appliance can last for decades when the patient takes proper care of it.

The structural characteristics of dental implants also makes these devices more effective at chewing than conventional dentures and bridges. The connection between the bone and the implant facilitates the prosthetic tooth’s ability to withstand stronger chewing forces. As a result, patients who choose dental implants are much less likely to have to give up their favorite foods.

With dental implants, you can also take care of your replacement teeth much like you do with your biological teeth. Unlike a dental bridge that limits access to your gumline, a dental implant lets you brush and floss normally.

Patients who prefer a replacement tooth that closely mimics a natural tooth and preserves the smile’s function should investigate dental implants as a treatment option. Call our office at Ora Dental Studio to schedule a consultation today.