Posts for category: Dental Procedures

By Dr. David L. Carlson
March 11, 2019
Category: Dental Procedures

Cosmetic Dentistry SmileCosmetic Dentistry Remakes Your Smile

How cosmetic dental procedures from your dentists in Wheaton, Illinois, can give you an outstanding smile

You can have the smile you want and deserve, even if you have damaged teeth. Cosmetic dentistry procedures can remake your smile, changing your smile from dull to dazzling. Whatever bothers you about your smile, there is a cosmetic dentistry procedure that can help. Dr. David Carlson and Dr. Michael Schuiling in Wheaton, IL, offer a wide range of cosmetic dental services to help you and your smile.

Not everyone is born with a great-looking smile. If you are one of the many people with a damaged, dull smile, you can remake it. Consider just a few of the many procedures available to rejuvenate your smile:

  • Professional Teeth Whitening: Professional teeth whitening treatment is effective and quick. In fact, the in-office treatment takes only about an hour, and you can whiten your smile up to 8 shades whiter. Your fantastic results can last up to 5 years too! Unlike over-the-counter whitening products, which may contain harmful chemicals, professional teeth whitening products have been rigorously tested and approved by the American Dental Association.
  • Tooth-Colored Fillings: If you have old, crumbly metal fillings that are ruining your smile; tooth-colored filling material can be matched to the color of your teeth and sculpted to match the natural contours of your teeth. The filling material is hardened with a dental light, giving you a filling that is virtually invisible. Tooth-colored fillings enhance your beautiful smile and protect your teeth.
  • Porcelain Veneers: If you have large or small chips, cracks, fracture lines, and other signs of damage; porcelain veneers can hide what everyday wear-and-tear and aging have done to your smile. Veneers are thin laminates of beautiful porcelain, which are cemented on to the front surfaces of your teeth. Porcelain veneers hide defects and damage, giving you a perfect smile!

To find out more about these services and other cosmetic dentistry procedures, call Dr. Carlson and Dr. Schuiling in Wheaton, Illinois, at (630) 653-9002 today and start remaking your smile!

Dental Crowns And BridgesSaving a damaged tooth or replacing a missing one preserves a smile for best personal appearance and oral function. If you have smile gaps or worry about the health of a particular tooth, Dr. David Carlson and Dr. Michael Schuiling can help you with crowns and bridges. In their Wheaton dental practice, these highly skilled and experienced dentists see many patients who wish to improve their oral health and feel better about how they look.

Restoring teeth and filling gaps

Many times, your dentist restores a cracked, decayed, heavily restored or infected tooth with a dental crown, or he may fill a smile gap with a customized bridge. Both services aim to preserve smile appearance, boost self-confidence, restore full oral function or avoid problems with remaining natural teeth. A complete oral examination and digital X-rays help Dr. Carlson or Dr. Schuiling recommend the restorations just right for you.

The details on porcelain crowns

A crown is a tooth-shaped jacket which fits over the healthy portion of a damaged tooth. Oral impressions and a detailed instructions tell the dental technician how to shape and shade your porcelain crown. For proper fit and bite, your dentist removes the unhealthy enamel, shapes the tooth and places an interim crown to protect and support the tooth. When your new crown is finished (usually within a week or so), Dr. Carlson or Dr. Schuiling will cement it into place permanently.

Crowns function and look great for many years--ten or more--when you carefully brush and floss every day. You should see your dentist semi-annually for cleanings and examinations, too.

Finally, crowns restore dental implants and cover teeth spared from extraction by root canal therapy. This versatile restoration supports fixed bridgework as well.

The details on bridgework

Bridgework does just what the name implies: it bridges, or spans, a smile gap created by one or more missing teeth. Typically, the dentist utilizes one or more crowns on both sides of the gap to anchor the artificial, or pontic, teeth. The number of crowns depends on the number of pontics.

Just as with single-tooth crowns, X-rays, impressions and instructions from your dentist tell the dental lab how to customize your dental prosthetic. When it's ready, your dentist will bond it over your existing teeth, ensuring its proper fit and bite with the opposing arch of teeth.

Bridges require meticulous oral hygiene to avoid plaque and tartar build-up. So, follow American Dental Association guidelines for in-office and at-home cleanings, and enjoy your bridgework for many years.

Learn more

For more information on dental prosthetics, such as crowns and bridges, and on the other restorative services Dr. Carlson and Dr. Schuiling provide, call the Wheaton, IL office for an appointment: (630) 653-9002.

PlanAheadtoMakeYourSmiletheBestitcanbeforYourBigDay

The big day you've waited for all your life is just around the corner — your wedding day! And to make that day as special as possible you've been working on making yourself more attractive.

In all your preparations, don't forget your smile. There are many ways to make it shine, some requiring little time or effort. A professional dental cleaning and polishing, for example, can do wonders for brightening your smile. If you have above normal staining, you can also undergo professional whitening to remove stains and enhance your teeth's natural color.

Some problems, though, like chipped, slightly misaligned or heavily stained teeth may require more than a cleaning or whitening session. In these cases, you might consider covering these less attractive teeth with porcelain veneers to transform their appearance. As the name implies, veneers are a thin layer of tooth-colored, translucent porcelain custom designed for you and bonded permanently to the visible tooth.

While veneers can significantly change your smile, it can't fix every appearance problem. Some teeth require more extensive dental work, like a porcelain crown that completely covers a tooth, or dental implants to replace missing teeth. In more complex situations you may want to look at orthodontics to repair an unattractive bite, or plastic surgery to change the look of a gummy smile.

Keep in mind, though, many of such treatments take time: installing dental implants can take months and some orthodontic treatments, years. As soon as you can, you should discuss your smile appearance with your dentist and what can be done to enhance it in the time you have.

With the help of your dentist, orthodontist or other specialist, you can change your smile. And that, along with all your other preparations, will help make that once in a lifetime day even more special.

If you would like more information on undergoing a smile makeover, 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 “Planning Your Wedding Day Smile.”

3TipsforDentureCaretoHelpThemLastandKeepYourMouthHealthy

For people with edentulism (total loss of teeth), removable dentures is a viable option for regaining both lost function and an attractive appearance. From the moment they begin wearing them, denture wearers can chew food, speak and smile with confidence.

But there are downsides to dentures, especially if they’re not cared for properly. Dentures put pressure on the gums and bony ridges of the jaw, which can cause bone to dissolve (resorb) and decrease its volume over time. Without proper maintenance they can also become a breeding ground for bacteria and fungi that not only lead to bad breath but, in cases of partial dentures, can increase the risk of dental disease. They could also contribute to serious systemic diseases.

You can reduce some of these risks by following these 3 important denture maintenance tips. Doing so will help extend the life of your dentures, as well as keep your mouth healthy.

Clean your dentures at least once a day. In addition to taking your dentures out and rinsing them with water after eating, you should also brush them daily with dish detergent, antibacterial soap or denture cleaner — but not toothpaste, which is too abrasive. Effervescent (fizzing) cleaning tablets also aren’t a viable substitute for manual brushing in removing disease-causing plaque from denture surfaces.

Take your dentures out at night while you sleep. Wearing dentures 24/7 can hasten bone loss, as well as increase your chances of dental disease or even more serious illnesses. A recent study, for example, found nursing home patients who left their dentures in at night were twice as likely to experience serious complications from pneumonia as those who didn’t. While you sleep, store your dentures in water or in a solution of alkaline peroxide made for this purpose.

Brush your gums and tongue every day. Keeping your gum surfaces clean will help reduce the levels of bacteria and other microbes that can cause disease. You can either use an extra-soft tooth brush (not the one you use to clean your dentures) or a damp washcloth.

If you would like more information on caring for dentures, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation.

By Dr. David L. Carlson
December 11, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: air abrasion  
AirAbrasionCouldbeaMorePleasantAlternativetotheDentalDrill

While it may not be one of your favorite features in the dental office, the dental drill is nevertheless necessary for treating problem teeth. It’s used primarily for removing decayed or damaged structure and preparing a tooth for fillings or other restorations.

Dental drills have been used for decades and are quite effective — but they have their drawbacks. Their rotating burrs often remove portions of healthy tooth structure along with decayed material. Friction from the drill action can cause discomfort, so local anesthesia is usually needed. Drills can also emit a high-pitched machine noise that’s unsettling to many patients.

There’s a growing alternative to the drill, known as air abrasion. Although the technology has been around since the 1950s, the development of new suction pumps that capture the resulting dust from its use has made it more palatable as an option to the traditional drill.

Also known as particle abrasion, the technique uses a pressurized stream of fine particles (usually aluminum oxide, an abrasive powder) directed at teeth to wear away (abrade) the tooth’s structural surface. We can be quite precise in the amount of surface material removed, so it’s useful for diminishing stains or roughing the surface for bonding materials like composite resin. We’re also able to remove decayed material with very little impact on surrounding healthy structure, and you may not need anesthesia during the procedure.

While this quiet alternative to the noisier drill is quite versatile, it does have its limitations. It’s not that efficient for preparing larger cavities for restoration or for removing older amalgam fillings. The teeth to be treated must be carefully isolated to prevent the fine particle dust produced from being swallowed by the patient or spread into the air. High-volume suction equipment is a must or the procedure will create a “sandstorm” of particles in the room.

Still, for situations suited to it and with proper isolation measures, air abrasion can be effective and comfortable. If the technology continues to improve, the dental drill may soon become a relic of the past.

If you would like more information on procedures using air abrasion, 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 “Air Abrasion Technology.”