The Importance of Back to School Dental Check-ups

Getting ready to go back to school can be a hectic time. It is best to do a little planning ahead so that the school year begins smoothly. This not only means getting the proper school supplies, it also involves making sure your child is in good health. One key to avoiding setbacks during the academic year is to begin school with a healthy smile! A dental check-up before classes begin diminishes the likelihood of a child not being able to concentrate on their schoolwork, or missing days due to the discomfort of a dental problem.

Picture1A dental exam before the start of the school year is so important that many states have mandated periodic evaluations as a condition of school entry. According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research Dental tooth decay is the single most common chronic childhood disease. Over 50 percent of 5 to 9 year old children have at least one cavity or filling, with that proportion increasing to 78 percent among 17-year-olds. Additionally, more than 51 million school hours are lost each year to dental-related illness.

Although the statistics indicate a high incidence of dental decay in children, helping your child avoid developing cavities is as simple as making an appointment for a routine dental exam. As prevalent as tooth decay is, it is also highly preventable and can be easily treated before any larger problems develop. While dental check-ups and professional cleanings at regular intervals are important for everyone to maintain a healthy and beautiful smile, it is especially essential for children. Changes in diet or oral habits, unfavorable jaw growth or development, and trauma to the oral cavity in children can rapidly alter the state of their smile.

Good dental routines established in youngsters provide a strong foundation for maintaining oral health over the course of a lifetime. When oral healthcare begins at an early age and continues on a regular basis the dentist can follow your child’s dental growth and development, provide preventative care, and effectively treat the initial stages of the vast majority of problems. Furthermore, early training in the fundamentals of proper oral hygiene techniques and dietary habits benefit not only a child’s smile, it improves their overall health and sense of well-being.

With regular dental check-ups your child will become more and more comfortable in the dental office. At each periodic exam the dentist will go over the child’s medical and dental history, examine their teeth and all of the surrounding soft tissues, as well as check their bite and jaw alignment. Dental x-rays may be taken to check for tooth decay, infection, or to evaluate developing teeth and underlying bone. The dentist or dental hygienist will then do a professional dental cleaning to eliminate any plaque or debris that has accumulated between the teeth or in hard to reach places. A topical fluoride treatment is oftentimes performed after the cleaning. This serves to strengthen the teeth by re-mineralizing the small imperfections in the tooth enamel. Topical fluoride is a safe and effective way to combat tooth decay.

Picture2When a child’s permanent molars and premolars come into place, the dentist will also recommend the placement of dental sealants. This procedure involves the application of very thin plastic coating to the chewing surfaces of the permanent back teeth. Sealants act to protect the vulnerable areas of these teeth from the bacteria and acids that cause decay. Dental sealants are quite strong and can last for several years, never the less the dentist will evaluate them at dental check-up visits to make sure that they are intact and reapply as needed.
It is a good idea at the back to school exam to inform the dentist which athletic teams or sports activities your child will be joining in the coming year. Sports accidents account for a high percentage of dental injuries in school age children. Although sports related injuries are unavoidable, some can be prevented. Studies have demonstrated that wearing a mouthguard significantly lowers the incidence as well as the severity of trauma to the teeth and mouth area. Based on your child’s dental development, the dentist will advise you which mouthguard is most suitable and will fabricate a custom mouthguard as needed.

A new school year brings new routines and its own set of unique challenges for a child. This is why it is so important that the transition back to school be as healthy as possible. Taking the time before classes begin to make sure your child’s smile is in tiptop shape helps them to put their best foot forward for a successful year.

Posted in News

Teeth Whitening

A smile is a universal expression. It communicates happiness, radiates warmth, and makes a positive impression on others. An attractive sparkling white smile is not just associated with dental health; it is also viewed as an important asset in terms of an individual’s self-esteem, social interaction, and career success. Not everyone is lucky enough to have naturally beautiful pearly whites. However, thanks to developments in the area of cosmetic dentistry over the past few decades, less than perfect smiles can be dramatically improved. Among the most sought after and popular dental cosmetic treatments available today is teeth whitening.

Teeth whitening or bleaching simply refers to any process that will make the teeth appear whiter. The options for teeth whitening run the gamut from over the counter toothpastes, rinses, strips, or gels to professionally supervised in-office and take-home procedures. There are in fact so many products on the market addressing teeth that are stained or discolored, that the choices can be both confusing and overwhelming. This is why it is a good idea to speak with your dentist when considering teeth whitening. The dentist can explain how each product works and if it is safe as well as appropriate for your situation.

How white a tooth looks is determined by how light is reflected and scattered off the enamel, the outermost layer of the tooth. Teeth can appear dark or discolored for any number of reasons. An imperfect appearance can be the result of either surface stains or discolorations inside of the tooth. While external tooth discoloration is typically due to certain foods and tobacco, internal tooth discoloration is mainly the result of genetics, certain medications, tooth decay, restorations, and trauma. Aging also plays a big role in tooth color. This is because over time the outer layer of enamel becomes thinner allowing more influence on tooth appearance by the inner layer of yellowish dentin.

1 People Smiling In many situations teeth whitening procedures will produce pleasing results. However, not every type of stain or discoloration responds well to teeth whitening. Some cases may require a different approach for cosmetic improvement. A dental exam and cleaning before a whitening procedure is important to determine that your teeth and gums are healthy, to remove any superficial stains and films that have built up on your teeth, as well to determine if you can expect a good result. Teeth whitening only works on natural teeth. The fact that whiteners do not affect the color of dental fillings, crowns and bridges is an important cosmetic consideration in planning treatment. In general, individuals with yellow tones to their teeth respond best to teeth whitening. Brown and grayish tinted teeth bleach respond less well and may require significantly longer dentist supervised tooth whitening regimens or alternative cosmetic treatments. Finally, teeth whitening may not be recommended in the presence of sensitive teeth, worn enamel and significant gum disease.

There are two major groups of teeth whitening products:

  • Peroxide containing bleaching agents
  • Whitening toothpastes or dentifrices

These products and procedures can be dispensed, managed, and supervised by your dentist, or independently purchased over the counter products that you self-direct.

Although over the counter teeth whitening systems purchased in stores or online have become popular, there are health concerns and limitations with these products. Teeth whitening products can damage the teeth and soft tissue in the mouth, and without professional monitoring they can be easily be misused or abused. While some over the counter products may work when healthy teeth and gums are present, they can be ineffective or problematic when sensitive teeth, exposed roots, cavities, broken fillings, cracked teeth, or loose dental work are present. As a rule the healthiest and most effective methods of teeth whitening are the ones managed and supervised by your dentist.

2 People Smiling An in-office teeth whitening procedure by your dentist is the best and safest way to get the maximum results immediately. In as little as one hour a professional strength in-office whitening system can give you a more pleasing smile with teeth that are several shades whiter than their original shade. Under the careful supervision of your dentist the surrounding soft tissues, gums, as well as any sensitive areas of the teeth are carefully isolated and protected from the effects of the bleaching agents.

A home whitening system from your dentist along with custom trays that have been fitted to your teeth is also an excellent option. The trays fabricated by your dentist help to keep the bleaching agents in maximum contact with the teeth and away from the other areas of your mouth. Performing a home teeth whitening is a more subtle and gradual process. Maximum results are less rapid than an in office procedure and are typically achieved over a longer period of time. In certain instances an at home whitening system may be recommended by your dentist as a follow up regimen to the in office procedure in order to perfect or maintain your results.

How long your teeth whitening lasts depends on your lifestyle. Your eating, drinking, and smoking habits can have a big impact on maintaining your result. Of course the best way to insure that your smile stays healthy and beautiful is a good daily oral healthcare regimen along with regular dental check ups and cleanings.

Posted in News

Do you need a nighttime mouth guard?

Do you often wake up in the morning with a sore or a painful jaw? Do you hear a popping sound when you open and close your mouth? Does your tongue have small indentations in it? If the answer is yes to any or all of these questions, then you may be suffering from teeth grinding, also called bruxism. In the United States, bruxism affects about 30 million to 40 million children and adults. Sure, occasional teeth grinding may be more of a nuisance than cause for alarm, but the truth of the matter is, if you do it on a regular basis, it can seriously damage your teeth and affect your oral health. Teeth grinding can occur for several reasons, including anxiety, stress, an abnormal bite, missing teeth and even sleep apnea. While some grinding does occur in the daytime, the most common and difficult to control is bruxism that happens while you sleep. Regardless of why you grind your teeth, the condition can be prevented with the use of a night guard. Wearing a night guard plays a vital role in the treatment and prevention of conditions caused by teeth grinding.

Man smilingFor those who suffer from bruxism, the constant clenching of your teeth puts pressure on the muscles, tissues and other structures of your jaw. These can cause headaches, earaches, jaw pain and muscle soreness.  However, there are serious dental conditions that can arise from bruxism.

Teeth grinding can cause the outer layers of enamel to wear away, thereby exposing dentin and creating tooth sensitivity.  Teeth grinding can also advance the aging of your teeth or loosen them.  Constant grinding may even wear your teeth down to little stumps and cause dental fillings to fall out.  Bruxism may also cause or worsen temporomandibular joint problems and disorders (TMJ).  Like all other joints in the body, the temporomandibular joint is prone to inflammation and other chronic joint problems.  Teeth grinding puts pressure on the joint that can lead to irritation and failure of the joint itself.

Wearing a nighttime mouth guard is your best defense against the harmful oral effects of teeth grinding.  It protects your teeth from the trauma of clenching and prevents the molars from grinding together.  Before you choose a mouth guard, you need to know your options. There are three different types of mouth guards.  The first, called stock mouth protectors, are pre-molded and ready to be worn.  They are low-cost and can be purchased at most sporting goods stores and department stores.  However, since these are preformed and come in a ready-made size, they do not offer any flexibility to fit each person’s mouth and offer little to no protection. They also tend to be very clunky and esthetically unappealing.  For these reasons, dentists do not recommend them.

Woman smilingThe second type of mouth guards, known as boil and bite mouth protectors, can also be purchased at many sporting goods stores and may give you a slightly better fit than stock mouth protectors.  These mouth guards are made from thermoplastic material that is placed in hot water to soften, then placed in the mouth and shaped around the teeth using finger and tongue pressure (hence the name “boil and bite”).  However, these mouth guards, while better than stock do not offer anything close to a custom fit.

The third and best option of mouth guards are custom-fitted mouth protectors. These are individually designed and fabricated in a dentist’s office.  First, your dentist will make an imprint of your teeth and a mouth guard is then molded over this impression model using special material.  Because of this special material and the time and work that goes into making it, this mouth guard offers the greatest fit, comfort and protection.

You may have many questions about which mouth guard is most suitable for specific needs.  Your dentist can suggest the best mouth guard for you. While it may seem easier and cheaper to buy a ready-made mouth guard at your local sporting goods store, a professionally made appliance customized to your fit your mouth precisely is your best bet for optimum protection and relief. You may think that teeth grinding doesn’t seem to cause much damage in the moment, but over time, it can affect your teeth tremendously. The right mouth guard will make a world of difference in protecting your teeth and preventing further damage.

Posted in Education, News

Transforming Your Smile With Dental Veneers

A beautiful smile is one of your most important assets. This simple and universal expression has a power beyond measure. In the absence of words it can communicate your most positive emotions. It radiates your personal warmth and inspires the confidence and trust of those around you.

Because a smile illuminates your face and highlights your features more than any other gesture, an attractive smile contributes to a positive self-image. According to dental surveys, many people believe that being secure about the appearance of their smile helps them in both their social and professional interactions.
Although some people have a naturally pleasing smile, there are many who feel theirs requires improvement. Fortunately, thanks to advances in the field of cosmetic dentistry, there are many options available today to transform and perfect the look of one’s smile.

One of the most esthetic and conservative means of creating a more pleasing and beautiful smile is the placement of dental veneers. Offering a relatively quick avenue to a dramatic and highly satisfying smile improvement, dental veneers are thin facings that are individually custom designed and bonded to the visible surfaces of the front teeth. Beyond taking very few visits, dental veneers are appealing because they require the removal of very little tooth structure. In many situations they are an excellent alternative to full coverage dental crowns for modifying the size, shape and color of the front teeth as well as perfecting the overall appearance of your smile.

If you are interested in improving the look of your smile with dental veneers you will first see your dentist for a smile makeover consultation. At this visit the dentist can assess the overall health of your teeth, the surrounding tissues and jawbones, and begin the process of analyzing your smile. If you have not had a complete dental examination in the recent past it will be recommended that you have one done. This is so that any decay, gum disease, infections, or other dental problems can be addressed before beginning cosmetic care.

mouth-with-mirror
Dental veneers may improve the appearance of front teeth that are:

  • Stained or discolored
  • Slightly crowded or misaligned
  • Peg shaped or undersized
  • Have spaces or gaps between them
  • Minimally chipped, fractured, or worn down

Depending on a variety of factors, dental veneers can be made of either porcelain or composite resin materials. Your dentist will decide with you which material best suits your needs and budget. When done correctly, both materials are capable of producing a beautiful result.

Porcelain veneers are typically fabricated from what is known as dental grade porcelain. A very durable material, porcelain has an inherent translucency that gives it a remarkable ability to create the most life-like and naturally appearing tooth surface. Porcelain veneers are highly stain resistant and will not darken from richly colored foods or habits like cigarette smoking. Although they are ultra thin and inherently brittle, once bonded to the teeth these veneers are very strong. Porcelain veneers are most often fabricated in a dental laboratory and take just a couple of visits from start to finish. They are generally more expensive and more difficult to repair than composite veneers, but if they are cared for properly will last longer and require less maintenance.

While porcelain veneers are fabricated from an impression and outside of the mouth, composite resin veneers offer the possibility of being directly sculpted onto one or any number of teeth in a single visit. Made from the same materials as white fillings, composite resin veneers are also capable of creating naturally appearing and absolutely brilliant smiles. However, since composite resin is a more porous material than glazed porcelain, these veneers can be more susceptible to staining or chipping.

man-smiling
Since cosmetic dentistry is both an art and a science your dentist will consider many factors to determine the type, shape, and size of the dental veneers most suited to your case. Achieving facial harmony and balance is of paramount importance. Your smile improvement expectations and goals will play a significant role in the treatment plan.
Once your new dental veneers are permanently placed you can begin to enjoy the beauty of your improved smile. Your veneers can be cared for just as you care for your natural teeth. Brushing, flossing and routine dental care are important. Your dentist may advise you to avoid toothpastes that are overly abrasive, as well as certain foods that may damage your veneers. A mouthguard or nightguard may be suggested in situations where the front teeth may be exposed to potential injury from sports or grinding and clenching habits.

Transforming your smile can impact both your life and your outlook. Considering the array of cosmetic concerns that dental veneers are able to address, it is no wonder they have become such a popular choice for cosmetic smile makeovers.

If you want to learn more about dental veneers and how they can help you transform your smile, please don’t hesitate to contact Forever Dental today!

Posted in Education, News

Complete Care Dental is becoming Forever Dental

Patients, Family and Friends,

When we launched Complete Care Dental nearly 8 years ago at Archer (4450 South Archer Avenue), we had a wonderful goal in mind: provide compassionate care in a safe and comfortable environment, and make each of our patients feel like a family member. We’ve grown our patient base, staff and doctor list over this time as well, and have been able to offer more services, better hours, and even better care over these 8 years.

In November 2014, we expanded to a second Chicago location, known as Belmont (5738 West Belmont Avenue). With this expansion comes even more services, more staff, and more hours for our patients.

Today, we are taking this to the next step. Since starting, we’ve always felt we could do better with our name. Going forward, Complete Care Dental will be known as Forever Dental. You can already see the new logo and branding at our Belmont location, and you will soon see this at Archer. You will see it on our signs, our business cards, and our flyers. And, of course, our website!

Thank you!

Dr. Reshma Dhake and the Forever Dental team

 

P.S. What do you think of our new logo?

Posted in News

Introducing the new CompleteCareDental.com!

Website, 2007-2013

CompleteCareDental.com, from 2007 to mid 2013

Back in 2007, we released the first Complete Care Dental website. It was modern, state of the art, fast, and designed with the latest website features in place.

The world has changed since 2007. Smartphones and tablets have taken over. More than half of our website visitors reach us by phone or tablet, and most of our patients carry smartphones with them.

Complete Care Dental.com today, on a mobile device

CompleteCareDental.com today, on a mobile device


We decided 6 months ago to rebuild our website from the ground up. The new version would be fast, mobile-friendly, and built with modern tools. And now, 6 months later, We are happy to release the new CompleteCareDental.com! This new website will let us keep the website current, write new and interesting articles about keeping your smile healthy, and allow us to communicate with you in ways we haven’t been able to in the past.

You may experience a few rough edges, so please help us out! If you discovered anything missing or broken, please contact us, email us, or call us.

Thanks!
The Complete Care Dental Family

Posted in News

Be a champion like the Blackhawks, but don’t end up with their teeth!

Blackhawks Stanley CupStatistics show that each year more than 3.5 million children, 14 years of age and younger suffer injuries while playing sports or participating in recreational activities, and many of these injuries involve the teeth, mouth and face. Using any mouthguard for protection is step in the right direction.

However, “off the shelf” mouthguards may be uncomfortable making it harder to breath easily and therefore being discarded or used less frequently. The dentist can custom build a mouthguard, fitted to your teeth and gums, providing maximum comfort and extra protection. Call us to learn more about a custom-made sports mouthguard for your child.

Posted in News

A confident smile will change someone’s day

Give them a smile: a happy, friendly, and genuine smile. Go ahead, flash it; its contagious, it’s infectious, It’s the universal expression of happiness. A simple smile can change someone’s day.

Some people are a little nervous about smiling. They don’t think their smile looks good, or they think that smiling makes them look unprofessional or vulnerable. No matter how professional, intelligent, or “together” you think a serious face makes you appear, people almost always respond better to a smile.

We all know of someone we consider to have an “infectious” smile. Infectious smiles always start with confidence. If you’re not 100% confident in your smile, we’re here to help.

While our first concern is keeping your teeth and mouth as healthy as possible, we have the tools and the training to make sure you have a smile that gives you confidence and a smile that you’re excited to share with others.

We’re more than happy discuss with you the many options available to help you achieve a smile worth sharing and a smile that will change someone’s day –including your own.

Posted in News

Dr. Reshma Dhake’s volunteer efforts featured in the Chicagoland Dental Society Magazine!

Complete Care Dental‘s own Dr. Reshma Dhake was featured in the May/June 2012 CDS Review, the Chicagoland Dental Society‘s member magazine.

Download “Volunteers wanted”

Congratulations Dr. Dhake!

*The CDS Review, the official publication of the Chicago Dental Society, is the original source of the article.

Posted in Community

Spread Halloween cheer and support the troops and local schools!

Run, Walk or Cheer With Us!

We are a proud sponsor of the Uno 5K Carrera del los Muertos Race of the Dead this Saturday, October 29th at 8am! Almost our entire dental team will be running or walking the 5K Race. Come run or walk with us or show your support along the race route. To register for the race, go to www.raceofthedead.com.

We will have a table at the finish line post race celebration. Stop by and say hello and grab some goodies and special whitening deals!

We Want to Buy Your Candy Again!

We will be buying back your candy through our Second Annual Halloween Candy Buy-Back Program to suppor the troops. We are buying candy for $1 per pound (up to 7 pounds per person) and shipping the candy over to Operation Gratitude to create care packages for the troops. We also are welcoming donations such as single serve cereal, travel sized shampoos, socks and hand made cards to send overseas. Click here for more suggestions: http://www.operationgratitude.com/the-wish-list/ . Bring your candy and donations on the following dates:

-Monday, October 31st from 12pm to 4pm
-Tuesday, November 1st from 12pm to 7pm
– Wednesday, November 2nd from 12pm to 7pm

We are Accepting Orthodontics (braces) Patients!

We are ready to make appointments for consultations with Dr. Matthew Israel for braces. For a limited time, we will be offering free consultation to meet with Dr. Israel. Please give our office a call to set up an appointment.

We are making great progress with the buildout and are excited to expand our services to you before the end of the year. We hope to get the equipment installed in the next couple weeks and then have some final touch ups before we open the new additon.

Happy Halloween and Thank You!

Posted in News