Posts for: January, 2018
Find out why visiting the dentist should be a mandatory part of your oral care routine.
We know your schedule is busy and it can seem like those six-month dental cleaning appointments can just sneak up on you, but it’s important that you don’t cancel these visits or avoid them. Our Chicago, IL, dentist, Dr. Ademola Adekola Jr., wants to make sure that every patient has a healthy, beautiful smile that’s free of problems.
So, why should you come into our office every six months for cleanings?
While your at-home oral care routine is extremely important this doesn’t mean that you can skip these professional dental checkups. Everyone, no matter how healthy they are, can benefit from getting routine dental cleanings and exams every six months. This preventive dentistry is one of the most important measures you can take to prevent cavities, gum disease and other issues from affecting your oral health.
Plaque and tartar buildup that isn’t removed can increase your chances of cavities or gum disease, which is why dental cleanings are so important. Since your at-home toothbrush won’t be able to remove tartar (hardened plaque) you will need to visit our Chicago general dentist so we can easily remove it with our professional dental tools. Plus, these dental cleanings will help you maintain fresh breath while removing those unsightly surface stains, as well.
Once a year we will also run a series of X-rays to look for problems that we won’t be able to see with the naked eye. This will also give us the ability to determine early signs of decay, whether wisdom teeth are about to erupt, if there is an infection present or if there are any issues with the health of your jawbone.
This is also a great time to talk with us about your oral care. Maybe you want to find out if an electric toothbrush is a better option for getting your teeth clean, or perhaps you want to talk to us about restorative or cosmetic dentistry services that could benefit your smile. Whatever you need we can make sure that you get the answers you’re looking for to maintain the very best oral health.
If you want to keep your smile looking and feeling its best then you should come into our office for routine care. Call More Smiles of Beverly in Chicago, IL, to schedule cleanings for you or the whole family.
Winter is the time for snowy landscapes, hot cocoa and flannel PJs, but for some 'tis the season for tooth trouble. What can you do to keep your teeth from becoming a pain this winter?
Tackle tooth sensitivity. Does crisp winter air on your teeth give you a jolt? A study published in the Journal of the American Dental Association found that 1 in 8 people (over 12%) suffer from tooth sensitivity, particularly to cold. Sensitivity can result from receding gums, erosion of tooth enamel, tooth decay or other dental problems. If you experience tooth sensitivity, use toothpaste that is specially formulated for sensitive teeth and breathe through your nose to protect your teeth from extreme cold. Most importantly, schedule a dental exam to determine why your teeth are sensitive.
Stay hydrated. In winter, we spend more time with the heat on and we tend to drink less water. A dry mouth can result, which can lead to bad breath, tooth decay and gum disease. Staying well hydrated keeps your gums and teeth moist and helps you produce more saliva, which is key to good oral health and fresh breath. Saliva helps wash away food debris and bacteria, neutralize decay-causing acid and repair weakened tooth enamel. For healthy teeth and gums, be sure to drink plenty of water this winter.
Safeguard your teeth on the slopes. Are you planning to hit the slopes this winter? Be sure to wear a mouthguard to help protect against injury. Beginning skiers and snowboarders are more likely to suffer falls that could result in dental injuries, while experts may fly over bumps and jumps, causing the upper and lower teeth to knock together with force. Even backyard sledders are at risk of dental injury. Mouthguards help protect against chipped, broken, or knocked-out teeth as well as soft tissue damage. So before you enjoy wintertime sports, make sure your teeth are protected. For the best fit and comfort, ask us about a custom mouthguard.
If you have questions about these or other dental issues, please contact us or schedule a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Treatment of Tooth Sensitivity” and “Dry Mouth.”
In her decades-long career, renowned actress Kathy Bates has won Golden Globes, Emmys, and many other honors. Bates began acting in her twenties, but didn't achieve national recognition until she won the best actress Oscar for Misery — when she was 42 years old! “I was told early on that because of my physique and my look, I'd probably blossom more in my middle age,” she recently told Dear Doctor magazine. “[That] has certainly been true.” So if there's one lesson we can take from her success, it might be that persistence pays off.
When it comes to her smile, Kathy also recognizes the value of persistence. Now 67, the veteran actress had orthodontic treatment in her 50's to straighten her teeth. Yet she is still conscientious about wearing her retainer. “I wear a retainer every night,” she said. “I got lazy about it once, and then it was very difficult to put the retainer back in. So I was aware that the teeth really do move.”
Indeed they do. In fact, the ability to move teeth is what makes orthodontic treatment work. By applying consistent and gentle forces, the teeth can be shifted into better positions in the smile. That's called the active stage of orthodontic treatment. Once that stage is over, another begins: the retention stage. The purpose of retention is to keep that straightened smile looking as good as it did when the braces came off. And that's where the retainer comes in.
There are several different kinds of retainers, but all have the same purpose: To hold the teeth in their new positions and keep them from shifting back to where they were. We sometimes say teeth have a “memory” — not literally, but in the sense that if left alone, teeth tend to migrate back to their former locations. And if you've worn orthodontic appliances, like braces or aligners, that means right back where you started before treatment.
By holding the teeth in place, retainers help stabilize them in their new positions. They allow new bone and ligaments to re-form and mature around them, and give the gums time to remodel themselves. This process can take months to years to be complete. But you may not need to wear a retainer all the time: Often, removable retainers are worn 24 hours a day at first; later they are worn only at night. We will let you know what's best in your individual situation.
So take a tip from Kathy Bates, star of the hit TV series American Horror Story, and wear your retainer as instructed. That's the best way to keep your straight new smile from changing back to the way it was — and to keep a bad dream from coming true.
If you would like more information about orthodontic retainers, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more about this topic in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Why Orthodontic Retainers?” and “The Importance of Orthodontic Retainers.” The interview with Kathy Bates appears in the latest issue of Dear Doctor.