My Dentistry Blog
Posts for: March, 2017
Sure, it’s big news when celebs tweet selfies from the dental office… if you’re still living in the 20th century. But in Hollywood today, it’s harder to say who hasn’t posted snaps of themselves in the dentist’s chair than who has. Yet the pictures recently uploaded to Twitter by Mark Salling, the actor and singer who regularly appears as Noah “Puck” Puckerman on the popular TV series Glee, made us sit up and take notice.
“Getting my chipped tooth fixed. Also, apparently, I’m a big grinder,” read the caption. The photo showed a set of upper front teeth with visible chips on the biting surface. What’s so special about this seemingly mundane tweet? It’s a great way of bringing attention to a relatively common, but often overlooked problem: teeth clenching and grinding, also called bruxism.
Although bruxism is a habit that affects scores of people, many don’t even realize they have it. That’s because the condition may only become active at night. When the teeth are unconsciously ground together, the forces they produce can wear down the enamel, cause chipping or damage to teeth or dental work (such as veneers or fillings), or even loosen a tooth! While it’s common in children under 11 years old, in adults it can be a cause for concern.
Sometimes, mouth pain, soreness and visible damage alert individuals to their grinding habits; other times, a dental professional will notice the evidence of bruxism during an exam or cleaning: tooth sensitivity and telltale wear and tear on the chewing surfaces. Either way, it’s time to act.
Bruxism is most often caused by stress, which can negatively impact the body in many ways. It may also result from bite problems, the overuse of stimulating substances (caffeine, alcohol, tobacco, and illegal drugs), and as a side effect of certain medications. Sometimes, simply becoming aware of the habit can help a person get it under control. Common methods of stress reduction include exercise, meditation, a warm bath or a quiet period before bedtime; these can be tried while we monitor the situation to see if the problem is going away.
If stress reduction alone doesn’t do the trick, several other methods can be effective. When bruxism is caused by a minor bite problem, we can sometimes do a minor “bite adjustment” in the office. This involves removing a tiny bit of enamel from an individual tooth that is out of position, bringing it in line with the others. If it’s a more serious malocclusion, orthodontic appliances or other procedures may be recommended.
When grinding is severe enough to damage teeth or dental work, we may also recommend a custom-made night guard (occlusal guard), which you put in your mouth at bedtime. Comfortable and secure, this appliance prevents your teeth from being damaged by contacting each other, and protects your jaw joints from stresses due to excessive grinding forces.
Whether or not you have to smile for a living, teeth grinding can be a big problem. If you would like more information about this condition, call our office to schedule a consultation for a consultation.
Invisalign allows people of any age to straighten their smile without those metal brackets and wires telling the world what they're about. Dr. David Dooley, Dr. David Lewis, Jr., and Dr. Alexander Quezada at Colonial Dental Group in Glenview, IL, offer orthodontic treatment with Invisalign. Here are five reasons to consider Invisalign.
Correct Smile Problems- A Glenview dentist can fix your smile problems. The Invisalign system corrects the same dental problems as conventional metal braces. The Invisalign system effectively corrects a variety of dental problems, including, gapped teeth, an underbite, overbite, cross bite, overcrowded teeth, protruding teeth and crooked teeth.
Avoid Embarrassment- Are you too embarrassed to wear metal braces? Traditional metal braces are the most noticeable type. You can straighten your smile without a mouthful of metal wires and brackets. Invisalign is the virtually invisible way to straighten your smile. Invisalign gradually moves your teeth using a series of virtually invisible aligners.
Improve Oral Health- Invisalign can improve your oral health. The removable Invisalign aligners make it easy to brush and floss your teeth to maintain proper oral hygiene. Conventional metal braces make cleaning teeth difficult because food particles and plaque can adhere to the teeth and brackets.
Eat Your Favorite Foods- With conventional metal braces, you have to avoid eating certain foods like popcorn, nuts, chewing gum and candy because they can easily become stuck next to your teeth. With the Invisalign system, you will be able to eat all your favorite foods with confidence.
Improve Your Speech- A speech disorder that is causes by crooked teeth can be easily treated with orthodontic treatments such as Invisalign. A speech disorder can have a devastating effect on a person's confidence, which is one of the many reasons you should consider Invisalign.
Are you ready to take your smile from ordinary to extraordinary? Millions of individuals have straightened their teeth with Invisalign. Perhaps it's time you joined them? Call Colonial Dental Group at (847) 729-2233 to schedule an appointment in Glenview, IL. Remember, it's never too late to straighten your smile.
Porcelain veneers have become a popular way to transform a smile. They're ideal for stained, chipped or slightly misaligned teeth. But although they don't need as much tooth preparation as crowns or other bridgework, the traditional veneer still requires some permanent tooth alteration.
Now, there's an alternative: no-prep veneers. With this option we can avoid any tooth structure removal or keep it to a minimum. And it may not even require local anesthesia while applying them.
Veneers are as their name implies: a wafer-thin layer of tooth-colored porcelain that's bonded to the outside of a tooth, much like siding on a house. Although the traditional veneer is usually no more than a millimeter in width, they can still add an unnatural bulky look and feel to a tooth. To compensate, we remove portions of the enamel. A tooth permanently altered this way will henceforth require some form of restoration.
No-prep veneers are much thinner; they also don't extend under the gum line like traditional veneers. At the most the new veneers may only require us to perform some minor reshaping of the enamel, but not to the extent of traditional veneers. And because your tooth isn't permanently altered, we could presumably remove the veneer and return the tooth to its natural state and appearance (although removing the bonding might not be that easy).
There are some situations where some tooth alteration may still be necessary, like oversized or forward-jutting teeth. A bad bite (malocclusion) may require orthodontic treatment first — which in some cases could be an alternative treatment to veneers altogether.
To find out if you're a candidate for no-prep veneers, visit us for a complete examination. From there we can discuss your options and whether we can transform your smile with little change to your teeth.