Scharfenberg Dental Blog

Elmhurst Dentist Explains the Importance of Treating TMJ

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

As a dentist, it is always my goal to help my patients achieve smiles that are beautiful and functionally healthy. Last week I saw a patient of mine who was really struggling with jaw discomfort and tooth soreness. She had always taken excellent care of her teeth, and was cavity-free, so she didn’t understand why she was suddenly in pain. It turned out that she was suffering from the disruptive symptoms of TMD (temporomandibular joint disorder), which can strike no matter how well you take care of your smile.

 

Many of our patients come in to our office complaining of jaw soreness, headaches, and tooth pain without realizing that these are symptoms of TMJ disorders. Our Elmhurst TMJ dentists are always on the lookout for these problems when they meet with patients, but today I’d like to give you a brief overview of TMJ problems so that you can actively seek treatment if you need to.

 

The temporomandibular joint connects the lower jaw joint to the skull. This joint allows you to speak, chew, and move your jaw from side to side. TMJ disorders result when dysfunction of the muscles surrounding this joint restricts the movement of the jaw and causes pain.

 

Common symptoms of TMJ dysfunction include jaw pain/tenderness, headaches, dizziness, teeth grinding, jaw popping/clicking, and restricted jaw mobility. You may even find that your jaw “catches,” meaning that you are unable to open your jaw all the way.

 

TMJ symptoms are painful and disruptive. Importantly, if they are left untreated they can become significantly worse over time. Eventually you could experience muscle spasms, inflammation of your temporomandibular joint and jaw, and sleep disturbances. Chronic teeth grinding and uneven biting will cause your teeth to weaken and wear down prematurely. This is why it’s so important to seek treatment from a TMJ dentist if you experience such symptoms.

 


Not many patients realize that TMJ problems are treatable with non-invasive, easy to use solutions. Our Elmhurst TMJ dentists often use small dental appliances to adjust the bite and relieve TMJ symptoms. Hopefully you now know that if you have TMJ problems you can recognize them and seek effective treatment to relieve your discomfort. If you are interested in learning more about TMJ disorder or you’d like to discuss your options with our Elmhurst dentists, please give us a call at (630) 733-1624.

Elmhurst Veneers Dentist Explains the Benefits of Porcelain Veneers

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

If you want to correct crooked teeth, a stained smile, or gaps between teeth, you’ve probably heard about the benefits of porcelain veneers. Last week, one of my patients asked a very logical question—“Isn’t porcelain used in dishes? Why use this material for dental veneers?” The truth is, the porcelain that our Elmhurst veneers dentists use to create restorations is a little bit different from porcelain used for dishes and sculptures. Today I’d like to explain just a few reasons why porcelain veneers are useful for dental restorations.

Porcelain Mimics Strong Enamel

One primary benefit of porcelain veneers is that porcelain—once bonded to the tooth—acts very much like natural enamel. The elasticity, hardness, and durability of bonded porcelain are all comparable with enamel in many ways. Durable porcelain veneers, therefore, work harmoniously with your natural teeth.

A Radiant Smile


Porcelain is an exceptional material for veneers because it allows light to penetrate dental restorations, allowing them to shine. Because porcelain veneers are not dull and opaque, but rather made of vivid, translucent layers of porcelain, they transmit and refract light similarly to natural teeth. Our Elmhurst veneers dentists create restorations without unsightly black lines and metallic underlayment. This means that your veneers will be sparkling white, and blend seamlessly with your smile—no need to worry about fake looking restorations.

Although initially the word “porcelain” may seem out of place in a dental blog (my patient last week said it made her think of her grandmother’s china!), upon closer inspection porcelain is an advantageous material to use for dental veneers. Because of their strength and natural luminosity, porcelain veneers have helped many Elmhurst patients enjoy beautiful smiles. I hope this blog entry has shed some light on this common question—as always if you are interested in learning more about porcelain veneers, or you’d like to discuss your dental options with our Elmhurst dentists, please give us a call at (630) 733-1624.

Elmhurst Cosmetic Dentist Explains the Benefits of the KöR Teeth Whitening System

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Today I had a patient ask me whether she could transform her discolored, sensitive teeth with teeth whitening. She was looking for a cosmetic solution that would be easy to use and fit in with her daily routine. I told her that the revolutionary KöR Whitening System could be the perfect solution for her dental woes.

What is the treatment process like? It’s simple! The KöR Whitening System is convenient and easy to use. Our Elmhurst cosmetic dentists will simply take molds of your teeth and create custom whitening trays for you. Then, you’ll have an in-office whitening session, followed by two weeks of whitening with a take-home kit. During those two weeks, you’ll wear your whitening trays at night. Then, you’ll come in for one more in-office appointment, and you’re done!


Is it safe?
Yes. Teeth whitening is safe and non-invasive. The KöR Whitening System is specifically designed to be a gentle whitening option. Most patients experience little or no sensitivity during treatment.


Does it work?
Yes. Over-the-counter treatments are unreliable, and many of our patients come to us because they are disappointed with the results of non-professional systems. On the other hand, our cosmetic dentists administer the KöR Whitening System—ensuring that you will see the whiter, natural-looking smile you want. Some of our patients have lightened their smiles by up to 16 shades! This is also the only whitening treatment that has been show to lighten tetracycline-stained teeth.


As you can see, the KöR Whitening System is a great option for rejuvenating your smile. If you’re interested in whitening your smile, or if you’d like to discuss your options for teeth whitening with our Elmhurst dentists, please give us a call at (630) 733-1624.

Elmhurst Dental Office Explains if a Child needs a Family Dentist

Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Why does my child need to see a family dentist for professional dental cleanings?

At Scharfenberg Dental, we’re frequently asked why children need to see a family dentist for regular professional cleanings. Because children have primary teeth, which they lose before adulthood, it may seem like pediatric dental cleanings are unnecessary. However, it is actually vitally important that your children see a family dentist twice a year. Here are the top 3 reasons our Elmhurst family dentists suggest pediatric check-ups:

Establish a dental record for your child: Regular check-ups and x-rays allow our dental team to track the growth of your child’s teeth and mouth. You child’s dental history will allow us to anticipate and avoid future dental/orthodontic problems.
Treat dental problems early: During your child’s exam, our Elmhurst family dentists will assess the health of your child’s teeth, gums, cheeks, and tongue. A professional exam identifies problems that may not be visible to you or your child. We can treat dental cavities and gum problems before they cause painful infections.
Set up good oral hygiene habits: Our Elmhurst family dentists will show your children the proper way to brush and floss their teeth, and reinforce the importance of daily oral hygiene at home. Positive dental check-ups can help your children avoid dental anxiety, and establish good habits that they will carry into adulthood.

If you’re looking for child-friendly dental care, give our Elmhurst family dental office a call to schedule an appointment.
Why does my child need to see a family dentist for professional dental cleanings?

At Scharfenberg Dental, we’re frequently asked why children need to see a family dentist for regular professional cleanings. Because children have primary teeth, which they lose before adulthood, it may seem like pediatric dental cleanings are unnecessary. However, it is actually vitally important that your children see a family dentist twice a year. Here are the top 3 reasons our Elmhurst family dentists suggest pediatric check-ups:

Establish a dental record for your child: Regular check-ups and x-rays allow our dental team to track the growth of your child’s teeth and mouth. You child’s dental history will allow us to anticipate and avoid future dental/orthodontic problems.
Treat dental problems early: During your child’s exam, our Elmhurst family dentists will assess the health of your child’s teeth, gums, cheeks, and tongue. A professional exam identifies problems that may not be visible to you or your child. We can treat dental cavities and gum problems before they cause painful infections.
Set up good oral hygiene habits: Our Elmhurst family dentists will show your children the proper way to brush and floss their teeth, and reinforce the importance of daily oral hygiene at home. Positive dental check-ups can help your children avoid dental anxiety, and establish good habits that they will carry into adulthood.

If you’re looking for child-friendly dental care, give our Elmhurst family dental office a call to schedule an appointmentWhy does my child need to see a family dentist for professional dental cleanings?

Why does my child need to see a family dentist for professional dental cleanings?

At Scharfenberg Dental, we’re frequently asked why children need to see a family dentist for regular professional cleanings. Because children have baby teeth, which they lose before adulthood, it may seem like pediatric dental cleanings are unnecessary. However, it is actually vitally important that your children see a family dentist twice a year. Here are the top 3 reasons our Elmhurst family dentists suggest pediatric check-ups:

  • Establish a dental record for your child: Regular check-ups and x-rays allow our dental team to track the growth of your child’s teeth and mouth. Your child’s dental history will allow us to anticipate and avoid future dental/orthodontic problems.

 

  • Treat dental problems early: During your child’s exam, our Elmhurst family dentists will assess the health of your child’s teeth, gums, cheeks, and tongue. A professional exam identifies problems that may not be visible to you or your child. We can treat dental cavities and gum problems before they cause painful infections, or cause damage to adult teeth underneath the gums.

 

  • Set up good oral hygiene habits: Our Elmhurst family dentists will show your children the proper way to brush and floss their teeth, and reinforce the importance of daily oral hygiene at home. Positive dental check-ups can help your children avoid dental anxiety, and establish good habits that they will carry into adulthood.

 

If you’re looking for child-friendly dental care, give our Elmhurst family dental office a call to schedule an appointment.



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