Posts for: September, 2016

By River Forest Dental Studio
September 16, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: tooth extraction  
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Removing a problem tooth (extraction) is a common dental procedure. But not all extractions are alike — depending on the type of tooth, its location and extenuating circumstances, you may need an oral surgeon to perform it.

Fortunately, that's not always the case. Teeth with straight or cone-shaped roots, like an upper front tooth, have a fairly straight removal path. A general dentist first carefully manipulates the tooth loose from the periodontal ligament fibers that help hold it in place (experienced dentists, in fact, develop a “feel” for this process). Once it's loosened from the fibers it's a simple motion to remove the tooth.

But as mentioned before, a “simple extraction” won't work with every tooth or situation. To find out if it can we'll first need to determine the true shape of the tooth and roots, as well as the condition of the supporting bone. We might find any number of issues during this examination that make a simple extraction problematic.

For example, teeth with multiple roots (especially in back) may have complicated removal paths. If the roots themselves are unhealthy and brittle from previous injury or a root canal treatment, they can fracture into smaller pieces during removal. A tooth could also be impacted — it hasn't fully erupted but remains below the gum surface. It's these types of situations that require surgery to remove the tooth.

During a surgical extraction, the oral surgeon will first numb the area with a local anesthetic, as well as a sedative if you have issues with anxiety. They then perform a surgical procedure appropriate for the situation to remove the tooth. More than likely they'll insert bone grafts before closing the site with stitches to deter bone loss (a common occurrence after losing a tooth).

Afterward, your provider may prescribe antibiotics and an antibacterial mouthrinse to ward off infection. You'll also be given care instructions for the extraction site to keep it clean. Any discomfort should subside in a few days and can be managed effectively with a mild anti-inflammatory drug like ibuprofen or aspirin.

It can be overwhelming having a tooth removed. In your dentist's capable hands, however, the experience will be uneventful.

If you would like more information on tooth extraction, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Simple Tooth Extraction?


By River Forest Dental Studio
September 08, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: dental implants  

Are you looking for a long-term option to replace your missing tooth? With proper care, dental implants can last your entire life. Dr. Gina Piccioni and Dr. John Hartmann, your River Forest, IL dentists at River Forest Dental Studio, shares some of the benefits of implants.

Implants become part of your jawDental Implants

Unlike bridges and dentures, implants don't just rest on top of your gums, but actually become part of your jawbone. Titanium dental implants look like tiny screws. During a minor surgical procedure, your dentist creates an opening in your hole and places the implant inside. Over the course of several months, the implant bonds to your jawbone and functions as a root for the crown that will replace your tooth above the gum line.

Bonding offers long-term benefits

Because your implant bonds with your jawbone, it will probably never need to be replaced, unlike bridges and dentures. As long as you care for your implant properly, it will remain firmly attached to your bone. Care is as easy as brushing and flossing. It's particularly important to floss at the base of the crown to prevent an infection that could threaten the health of your implant. Using interdental brushes can make it easier to clean the spaces around your crown.

Dental implants may be the less expensive option in River Forest

Cost is an important consideration when you choose any type of dental restoration. Although implants may be more expensive initially, it's important to also consider the long-term costs. If you choose a bridge or dentures instead of implants, you'll need to calculate the cost of replacing these appliances at least two or three times during your life, keeping in mind that costs will only increase over time. When you compare the lifetime costs of bridges or dentures to the one-time cost of dental implants, you may just discover that implants are the more cost-effective choice.

Would you like to learn more about dental implants? Call Dr. Piccioni and Dr. Hartmann, your River Forest, IL dentists at River Forest Dental Studio, at (703) 366-6760 to schedule an appointment. Improve your smile with dental implants!


By River Forest Dental Studio
September 01, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
KathyBatesPlaysItSmartWithProfessionalTeethWhitening

Academy Award-winning actress Kathy Bates knows how important it is to present your best face to the world — and one of the most important features of that face is a beaming smile. But there came a point when she noticed something was a little off. “I've always had good teeth, but it seemed to me as I was getting older that they weren't looking as good,” Kathy explained in a recent interview with Dear Doctor magazine.

That's when she decided it was time to take action. Kathy had orthodontic treatment when she was in her fifties, and she keeps her smile bright with tooth whitening treatments. She uses a kit provided by her dentist with a safe, effective whitening solution.

Of course, a bright, healthy smile looks great anywhere — whether you're on the red carpet or “off the grid.” And you don't have to be a Hollywood star to have professional whitening treatments. In fact, teeth whitening is one of the most popular and affordable cosmetic treatments modern dentistry offers.

The basic options for professional teeth whitening include in-office bleaching or take-home kits. Both types of dentist-supervised treatments offer a safe and effective means of getting a brighter smile; the main difference is how long they take to produce results. A single one-hour treatment in the office can make your teeth up to ten shades lighter — a big difference! To get that same lightening with at-home trays, it would take several days. On the plus side, the take-home kit is less expensive, and can achieve the same results in a bit more time.

It's important to note that not all teeth can be whitened with these treatments. Some teeth have intrinsic (internal) stains that aren't affected by external agents like bleaches. Also, teeth that have been restored (with bonding or veneers, for example) generally won't change color. And you can't necessarily whiten your teeth to any degree: Every tooth has a maximum whiteness, and adding more bleach won't lighten it beyond that level. Most people, however, find that teeth whitening treatments produce noticeable and pleasing results.

What about those off-the-shelf kits or in-the-mall kiosks? They might work… or they might not. But one thing's for sure: Without a dentist's supervision, you're on your own. That's the main reason why you should go with a pro if you're considering teeth whitening. We not only ensure that your treatment is safe — we can also give you a realistic idea of what results to expect, and we will make sure that other dental problems aren't keeping you from having a great-looking smile.

How often does Kathy Bates see her dentist for a checkup and cleaning? “I go about every four months,” she noted. “I'm pretty careful about it.” And if you've seen her smile, you can tell that it pays off. If you would like more information about teeth whitening, please contact us or schedule an appointment. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Important Teeth Whitening Questions Answered” and “Teeth Whitening.”




Gina Piccioni, D.M.D. and John G. Hartmann, D.D.S.

River Forest, IL Dentist

River Forest Dental Studio

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