Posts for: February, 2019
Orthodontic problems stem from many sources—heredity, trauma, and even thumb sucking can affect how someone's teeth come together and how balanced and their straight jaw alignment is. If you are one of the millions of Americans who are unsatisfied with their tooth alignment, you should consider braces in order to have a healthier and more aesthetically pleasing smile! At Skopek Orthodontics of North Barrington, Dr. Robert Skopek crafts custom orthodontic treatment plans, and he can show you which braces are best for your situation.
The advantages of orthodontia
Braces from Skopek Orthodontics of North Barrington improve how your smile looks as well as balance your facial appearance from the front and the side. Many people who have orthodontic problems (e.g. teeth that are gapped, crowded, rotated, or missing) often also have issues with jaw structure: a chin may be receding, a top jaw bone too far forward, or a lower jaw displaced to one side.
These structural problems cause teeth to wear unevenly and contribute to decay, gum disease, jaw joint dysfunction, ear pain, and more. Accordingly, Dr. Skopek emphasizes not only the cosmetic aspects of orthodontic correction but also the health aspects. Both are important now and in the patient's future, for correct smile alignment definitely impacts dental longevity.
Types of appliances
Metal brackets and archwires remain the most common orthodontic appliances because of their versatility and ability to correct the most complex of issues. Ceramic braces are popular because of their less obvious appearance, while lingual braces are prized because they are completely hidden from view, a feat achievable through the brackets being cemented on the inner faces of the teeth.
Finally, Dr. Skopek offers ultra-thin Invisalign aligners. Customized according to three-dimensional scans, these removable appliances correct a range of mild-to-moderate issues such as overbite, tooth tipping, overjet, crowding, gaps, and more. Smooth and removable, Invisalign appliances are easy to maintain and comfortably move teeth in less time than metal braces.
Time for a new smile
At Skopek Orthodontics of North Barrington, Dr. Robert Skopek helps patients of all ages find the braces right for their smiles. Trust his skill, reputation, and caring attitude for you and your family. Call today to learn more about braces! We can be reached at (847) 277-1212.
Dental implants are popular with both patients and dentists for their durability and likeness to natural teeth. That natural look, though, can be difficult to attain, especially in what’s known as the “smile zone” — the area of the mouth where teeth are most visible when you smile.
Our biggest concern is the upper front teeth, where the gums are most visible, especially if you smile widely. It takes considerable skill, experience and artistry to position implants in this area so that they appear to naturally emerge from the gums and blend well with other teeth.
To obtain that natural look, we must first assess whether or not there’s enough bone present, which tends to dissolve (resorb) when a tooth is missing, to sufficiently anchor the implant in the right position. There also needs to be sufficient bone around adjacent teeth to support the tiny triangles of gum tissue between teeth called papillae. Without the papillae an unattractive black hole may result between the implant and an adjacent tooth or implant.
Another factor we must consider is the type of gum tissue you have. Everyone generally inherits one of two types of tissue from their parents: thin or thick. The type you have can influence the way the implant appears to emerge from the gums. If you have thick gums, they’re easier to work with and can cover more of the implant. Thinner tissues aren’t quite as easy and are less forgiving if an implant isn’t placed as precisely as possible.
In recent years, improvements in implant design have sought to provide greater stability around bone and gum tissues to offset some of the issues we’ve mentioned. A variation on the design of the top of the implant (where the crown is attached) changes the direction of growth for gum tissues from a horizontal orientation to a vertical one, which can help with the final appearance.
The first step, if you’re considering dental implants for a tooth in the smile zone, is to visit us for a complete examination to see if any of these factors may have an impact on your situation. We can then advise you on the best course of action to achieve the most attractive smile possible.
If you would like more information on dental implants, 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 “Implant Aesthetics.”
No matter how well you care for your skin, wrinkles are inevitable. Luckily, the dermatologists at Atlantic Center for Dermatologic Diseases in Sandy Springs, Roswell, Alpharetta, and Cumming, GA, offer several wrinkle treatments that will help your skin look younger and smoother!
Botox injections prevent facial muscles from contracting, which allows wrinkles in the skin to relax. The injections temporarily minimize the appearance of crow's feet, vertical lines between the eyes, forehead furrows, and lines around the mouth. The effects of these injections usually begin to fade after about three or four months. Scheduling regular Botox appointments with your dermatologists in Sandy Springs, Roswell, Alpharetta, or Cumming will keep your skin line free.
Fillers plump up the skin and increase collagen production, making wrinkles much less noticeable. Fillers are often used to make thin lips fuller and improve volume in the cheeks. When your skin is fuller and firmer, lines and wrinkles smooth out and become less noticeable. Fillers can also improve nasolabial fold lines, lip lines, chin creases, and crow's feet. Fillers last six months to two years, depending on the type.
Chemical peel treatment sloughs off the outer layers of your skin revealing the smoother, blemish-free skin underneath. Peeling begins a few days after your treatment and usually lasts about three to five days. Your skin doctor may recommend a superficial, medium or deep peel, depending on the depth of your wrinkles.
Interested? Give Us a Call!
Banish wrinkles with a visit to the skin doctor! Schedule an appointment with the dermatologists at Atlantic Center for Dermatologic Diseases by calling (404) 252-4333 for the Sandy Springs, GA, office, (770) 751-1133 for the Roswell office, (770) 664-5225 for the Alpharetta office, or (770) 844-1902 for the Cumming office.
What's so special about dental implants — and why should you consider one to replace a missing tooth?
Although they've only been widely available for thirty years, dental implants have climbed to the top of tooth replacement choices as the premier restorative option. Since their debut in the 1980s, dentists have placed over 3 million implants.
There's one overriding reason for this popularity: in structure and form, dental implants are the closest replacement we have to a natural tooth. In fact, more than anything else an implant is a root replacement, the part of the tooth you don't see.
The artificial root is a titanium post surgically imbedded into the jaw bone. Later we can attach a porcelain crown to it that looks just like a visible tooth. This breakthrough design enables implants to handle the normal biting forces generated in the mouth for many years.
There's also an advantage in using titanium dental implants. Because bone cells have a special affinity to the metal, they will grow and attach to the implant over time. Not only does this strengthen the implant's hold within the jaw, the added growth also helps deter bone loss, a common problem with missing teeth.
It's this blend of strength and durability that gives implants the highest success rate for any tooth replacement option. Over 95% of implants placed attain the 10-year mark, and most will last for decades.
Dental implant treatment, however, may not be possible in every situation, particularly where significant bone loss has occurred. They're also relatively expensive, although more cost-effective than other options over the long term.
Even so, implants can play an effective and varied role in a dental restoration. While single implants with attached crowns are the most common type of replacement, they can also play a supporting role with other restorative options. As few as two strategically placed implants can provide a more secure connection for removable dentures or fixed bridges.
You'll need to first undergo a thorough dental examination to see if implants could work for you. From there, we'll be happy to discuss your options for using this "best of the best" restoration to achieve a new, beautiful smile.
If you would like more information on dental implants, 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 “Dental Implants 101.”
Long ago dental work could be painful and stressful—often for both patient and practitioner. Thankfully, that time is long past: today, most procedures are painless in large part due to local anesthesia.
Local anesthetics are numbing substances applied to specific areas of the body like the teeth and gums to temporarily block pain during a procedure. And because they only affect a localized area of the body, you remain conscious and alert throughout the procedure.
To achieve the level of numbing necessary for dental work, we often need to deaden the gums using a needle to deliver the anesthetic. But then this poses a secondary pain concern—the needle stick itself.
Again, topical anesthesia comes to the rescue in the form of a swab, patch or spray applying an anesthetic directly to the top layer of the gums at the injection site. This numbs the area and prevents you from feeling the needle stick. It's highly probable, therefore, that from start to finish you won't feel any discomfort during your dental work except perhaps for a little pressure.
Local anesthesia truly is a game changer for dental care—and not just for the patient. A dentist who's concerned about their patient's comfort level may work hurriedly to complete a procedure. But if their patient is relaxed, the dentist can work calmly and methodically. The result is better, more focused care.
For all its improvements in the patient experience, though, there has been one consistent complaint—the numbness that often lingers for a while after the procedure is over. But there have been advances in recent years that have helped reduce this irritation: new anesthetic agents (even some that can reverse the anesthetic effect) and fine-tuned dosages can help keep residual numbing to a minimum.
Not all procedures like routine teeth cleanings or enamel shaping require anesthesia. But when it's appropriate, local anesthesia can make your next dental visit much more pleasant.
If you would like more information on how anesthesia benefits your dental care, 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 “Local Anesthesia for Pain-Free Dentistry.”