How often do you visit the dentist? Regular dental care is crucial for maintaining a healthy and beautiful smile. Without routine dental care, your smile may become susceptible to a number of serious dental problems, including tooth decay, gum disease, and even TMJ disorder. At Lake Forest Dental Arts, we provide the latest in quality general dentistry. Your Lake Forest general dentist, Dr. James Fondriest, offers tips and treatment to help your smile stay dazzling and healthy.
Regular Dental Checkups
How often should you receive a dental checkup? According to the American Dental Association, people should undergo a checkup once every six months. During these appointments, your Lake Forest general dentist will perform a thorough oral examination. Using the latest in dental technology, he will watch for the earliest signs of burgeoning dental problems, signs that are often invisible to the naked eye. If Dr. Fondriest discovers any indicators of developing issues, he can prescribe a personalized treatment plan, helping you avoid the need for costly and invasive procedures down the road. To schedule a checkup, talk to your Lake Forest general dentist today.
Brighten Your Smile with a Dental Cleaning
Many patients underestimate the importance of a dental cleaning. A routine cleaning helps keep smiles healthy and free of minor discoloration. Dental cleanings also aid in the prevention of gum disease. Over time, bacteria coat our teeth in a sticky substance known as plaque. Often, plaque irritates the gums, causing inflammation. Soon, the gums may begin to pull away from the teeth and form pockets at the gum line. Once bacteria invade these pockets, gum disease may form. Patients with gum disease report sore, red gums that bleed easily. Gum disease also causes the connective tissue between the teeth and gums to dissolve, leading to loose and lost teeth.
A cleaning allows our hygienists to remove plaque from your teeth, preventing inflammation and periodontal disease. Removing plaque also freshens the breath and helps prevent teeth stains. After removing the plaque, your teeth will be polished for a brighter, stunning appearance. To receive a thorough dental cleaning, contact Dr. Fondriest today.
Diagnosing and Treating TMJ Disorder
As part of our general dentistry services, we offer treatment for TMJ disorder. TMJ disorder occurs when the jaw joints become strained. Inordinate stress on these joints may lead to difficult opening and closing your mouth. A variety of factors can place stress on the jaw joints, including trauma to the face or jaw, bruxism (teeth grinding), and malocclusion (bite misalignment). Patients who develop TMJ disorder report a number of similar symptoms, including:
- Headaches and jaw pain
- Earaches and tinnitus
- Neck and shoulder pain
- Popping or clicking in the jaw
For patients who grind their teeth, tooth sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures and toothaches may accompany the symptoms of TMJ disorder. If you experience one or more of these symptoms on a persistent basis, contact Dr. Fondriest. He will diagnose the cause and assess the severity of your TMJ disorder, providing the appropriate treatment. For some patients, simple muscle exercises can help reduce TMJ-related pain. In severe cases, Dr. Fondriest may recommend an occlusal device. Similar to a night guard, this oral appliance is worn during sleep and repositions the jaw to correct misalignment. An oral splint also prevents the upper and lower teeth from touching, easing bruxism and decreasing TMJ symptoms.
Maintaining Good Dental Habits
In addition to our general dental services, there are steps you can take from to keep your smile happy and healthy. First, always brush your teeth thoroughly twice a day and floss once. This helps cleanse your mouth of harmful bacteria and stray food particles, staving off tooth decay and gum disease. In addition, always remember to see Dr. Fondriest for a routine checkup and cleaning. With a little preventive maintenance, you can obtain a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums.
About Lake Forest Dental Arts:
Aside from providing expert cosmetic dentistry services to our community, Dr. James Fondriest also holds highly-respected academic appointments at the Pankey Institute in Key Biscayne, FL, and the Spear Institute in Scottsdale, AZ, and he is an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Prosthodontics at the University of Florida Dental School. At Lake Forest Dental Arts, Dr. Fondriest combines his impressive array of experience with modern technology and caring, compassionate, and knowledgeable staff, and we proudly serve patients from Chicago and all surrounding communities. To schedule your consultation, call our office today at (847) 234-0517.