Crowded teeth isn’t only a cosmetic concern

Crowded teeth isn’t only a cosmetic concern

Taking care of your teeth can be one of the more challenging aspects of keeping your body healthy.

Most people know enough to brush twice a day and floss after every meal, but other than this, the teeth remain mostly an enigma to the average person.

One of the most common yet least known about issues is crowded teeth.

While crowded teeth might sound like merely a cosmetic problem, it can actually wreak havoc in your overall health in a variety of ways.

Today, I’m going to delve into what you need to know about crowded teeth, so your oral hygiene can continue to be in tiptop shape.

What are crowded teeth and how do you get them?

Crowded teeth, also referred to as malocclusion, simply means that your teeth are misaligned, which results in a variety of issues depending on the person. Because the teeth are crowded, they begin growing in abnormal directions due to lack of room.

For most of my patients, crowded teeth are an inherited trait. It depends on a person’s jaw and teeth size. However, there are a number of ways to develop crowded teeth on your own, many of which occur as a child.

I recommend parents to keep an eye out for pervasive thumb-sucking and refrain from prolonged pacifier and bottle usage, all of which could all result in the misalignment of teeth in children. It’s also possible for poorly fitted dental fillings, retainers, and braces to cause crowded teeth, hence why it’s important to see an experienced dentist.

What are the consequences of crowded teeth?

When the teeth are packed together, it becomes difficult for your toothbrush or floss to reach certain places. This allows bacteria and plaque to go unattended, resulting in stains and tar buildup.

Malocclusion can cause

  • frequent tongue biting
  • speech problems
  • for younger children, new teeth to grow where they shouldn’t
  • teeth are harder to clean, making them susceptible to plaque buildup and gum disease
  • can result in a TMJ disorder

When you have a TMJ disorder, it means there’s great pain in the joints and muscles that operate your jaw, resulting in a myriad of painful symptoms

maloccolusion can cause

What is the best crowded teeth treatment?

While minor misalignments in the teeth are relatively normal, moderate or severe deviations can cause pain and should be treated.

Braces

One of the most common techniques in modern orthodontics for treating crowded teeth is braces, which use a metal wire to realign the teeth.

Tooth Removal

Sometimes, in cases of extreme overcrowding, the removal of certain teeth can help get the rest of the teeth back on track.

Some teeth don’t need to be entirely removed. Instead, they can be reshaped or adjusted, which creates the desired room for the rest of the teeth to flourish. In rare cases, surgery is required in order to reshape or shorten the jaw, but only if there’s extreme misalignment.

Clear Aligners or Invisalign®

Clear braces is a form of orthontics that’s attractive to adults and teens because they are nearly invisible. The smooth, clear material is custom made in the lab and designed to fit snugly on your teeth, so there is no discomfort or unsightly metal brackets.  It can be easier to brush and floss during your treatment, as compared to traditional ortho, for better oral health.

Click here to read more about Invisalign.

Which of these is best for you?

I recommend making an appointment with us and getting a personal diagnosis. Crowded teeth can be spotted during a routine exam, although x-rays are sometimes required to get the most complete picture.

Treatment itself is about a six-month to two-year process, although it can go longer. Treatment for children and adolescents is easiest, as their bones and teeth are more malleable than an adults’.

We… believe in making your life easy

My team and I know you have a lot on your plate.

Worrying about your teeth can sometimes fall to the bottom of the pile when it comes to your many responsibilities.

That’s why we go out of our way to make sure something like crowded teeth is diagnosed and treated in the most efficient way possible.

For parents, be sure to remember to take preventative measures with your children, as their behavior at a young age can affect their oral health for years to come.

As always, it’s best to seek treatment as soon as possible. If there’s a problem, we can fix it before it gets worse. If there’s no problem, then that’s even better. Either way, you’re in good hands with your local Mount Prospect dentist.

Do you have any further questions regarding crowded teeth? Feel free to contact us and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible. Not only do we love working on teeth, but we love talking about them, too!

Halloween Dental Survival Candy Guide

Halloween Dental Survival Candy Guide

With Halloween fast approaching, there’s no denying that costumes and decorations are exciting, but candy and sugary treats can wreak havoc on our teeth. Candy, as well as hurting children’s teeth, can lead to hyperactivity and weight gain. In some cases, the wrong types of candy can also lead to broken teeth and damaged braces.

But as your Des Plaines and Mount Prospect dentist, I understand it’s Halloween. Kids especially need to satisfy their sweet tooth. That’s why we put together this Halloween survival guide to help you and your little ones navigate through this sugar laden holiday.

How Halloween Candy Damages Your Teeth

Sugar is sticky. On our teeth, it becomes a tasty meal for bacteria. Bacteria eat sugar and turn it into a mildly acidic substance.

Over time, this creates a horrible environment for your teeth. That’s when cavities start to develop. Even without the sugar, some candies can still break teeth or cause damage.

However, not all sugar is created equal. You can still enjoy candy here-and-there without risking damage to your teeth. Just keep in mind which types of candy to avoid, and we can help you make it to Thanksgiving without any problems.

Sorting out the Truth on Treats- the good, the bad and the ugly

Chocolate

dark-chocolateLuckily for chocolate lovers: the darker, the better.

The cacao compound found in chocolate, CBH, hardens your tooth enamel, making your teeth more resistant to cavities and sensitivity. It’s best to look for dark chocolate with 75% cacao content or higher and with less than 6-8 grams of sugar per serving.

I’d say dark chocolate is one of the best candy options for Trick or Treat during Halloween.

Candy Bars with Nuts

If a candy bar has nuts, it already has more nutritional value than most others. Nuts contain high levels of protein, vitamin E, and other nutrients.

But what about teeth?

Nuts can help break up the sticky portions of candy bars. This means less sugar makes it onto your teeth. They also help scrub the sugar from your teeth. Although, a candy bar with nuts is no excuse to avoid post-candy brushing.

Gummy Candy

gummy bears

Gummy candy is also very sticky and difficult to clean off from our teeth no matter how well we brush.

Sugar from gummy candy works its way into the deep crevices on our teeth which leads to increased risk for cavities and long-term damage. No one wants a toothache the night before Thanksgiving.

Hard Candy and Lollipops

First of all, hard candies can break your teeth. This fact alone makes them one of the worst candies to have kicking around after Halloween.

Hard candies and lollipops sit in our mouths for a long time giving the sugar plenty of time to settle onto our teeth. It’s tempting to consume these candies compulsively while sugar and bacteria wreak havoc.

I suggest brushing your teeth and flossing as soon as possible after eating hard candy or lollipops to avoid acid damage.

Sour Coated Candy

sugar-coated-candy

Their acidic property accelerates the damage caused by bacteria which can make your teeth more vulnerable.

Gummy candy with a sour coating? That’s probably the worst candy for your teeth. Avoid sour candy as much as possible.

Extra candy? Drop them off at our Packages4Patriots Candy Buy Back!

des-plaines-candy-buy-back-2017

Every year we work with Packages4Patriots to collect uneaten, unopened Halloween candy for our US troops.

We will be collecting candy the week of Halloween during regular business hours. Children are welcome to drop off candy anytime in exchange for $1 per pound and a goody bag including a toothbrush and toothpaste! Any candy donations from adults who would like to find a good home for their unused candy this Halloween will gratefully be accepted as well.

All collected candy will be given to Packages4Patriots who puts together care packages around the holidays and throughout the year to send to the men and women overseas bringing smiles to those who have set out to protect our country!

This program has been very successful in the past year and we hope that 2017 is the best yet!

Let us know if you have questions regarding our Dental Halloween Survival Guide or Halloween Candy Buy Back!

Dr. Tom Meyer, DDS, FICCMO
dentist Mount Prospect, dentist Des Plaines

Are you ready for a different dental experience?

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Toothaches and Lifestyle: Why One in Five Adults Skip the Dentist

Toothaches and Lifestyle: Why One in Five Adults Skip the Dentist

Toothaches – such a small, little tooth can make you miserable and can sometimes make you feel helpless. Since February 9th happens to be National Toothache Day let’s talk about how you can prevent a toothache.

Toothaches can be prevented by regular checkups and cleanings. If you haven’t been to the dentist in lately, we at the Meyer Dental Group in Des Plaines encourage you not to be hesitant to make an appointment to get back on track. While focusing on taking care of your whole body by eating healthy, practicing yoga going to the gym, etc – don’t forget your dental health is a link to your overall general health and your mouth deserves as much attention.

Allow us to delve into what a toothache could cost you down the road.

What a Toothache Really Costs – Des Plaines Dentist, explains

Avoiding regular dental visits can cost you more down the road. In fact, even though it’s recommended you visit the dentist every six months, only 52.3% of adults actually see their dentist that often. About 23% admit they probably won’t go in the next year. While parents get their kids to the dentist around 64.6% of the time, more than one in five adults haven’t been to a dentist in years.

A toothache undoubtedly can cause a lot of pain and sleepless nights and can make eating and drinking unbearable. Waiting to get a toothache looked at can cause more problems the longer you put it off. The longer you postpone a toothache, the treatments needed may become more time consuming and costly. It’s also important to realize that pain from a toothache can mean something other than a cavity.

  • Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ)
  • TMJ is acute or chronic inflammation of the joint that connects the jaw to the skull. There are a lot of other symptoms for this, including head and neck pain and a popping or cracking sound when chewing.
  • Sinus trouble
  • Your sinuses are located above the top teeth, so a sinus infection can cause pain that is perceived to be in the top teeth. In reverse, sometimes you can think you have a sinus infection when really it is a toothache or tooth infection. It’s best not to wait and schedule at Meyer Dental Group in Des Plaines for a tooth evaluation to make sure you do not have an infection.
  • Heart disease/heart attack
  • Tooth and jaw pain are typically included as a possible symptom of a heart attack. Toothaches should be paid special attention if there is any family or personal history of cardiac problems, lightheadedness, sweating, or chest pain is also occurring.

These things are all generally rare but should not be ignored. It is possible that your toothache really is just a toothache, but it is important to be aware of other potential problems.

If a toothache is due to tooth decay, leaving it untreated can lead to various infections, from a tooth abscess to a more serious infection of the jaw or mouth. A toothache itself is generally not dangerous; however, any resulting infection could be potentially life-threatening if ignored.

Why Are People Afraid of the Dentist?

Going to the dentist when you have a toothache is one thing, but people use all kinds of excuses to justify not going to the dentist for regular checkups. If they’re not having any pain, they will think that nothing is wrong and see no reason to go. They’re too busy, they can’t take the time away from work. Some people worry about being able to afford the bill. A few people will even come right out and admit that they’re scared. An estimated 9-15% of people have a genuine fear of the dentist. People worry about pain, being judged or lectured, or having had a bad experience in the past. Getting over this fear is not easy, but it is possible.

Des Plaines – Mount Prospect’s Dr. Meyer Can Help You Get Over Your Fear

If you haven’t had a recent visit to the dentist because you’re afraid, we at the Meyer Dental Group can assure you we’ll do everything we can to help lessen your fear.

Here are some tips to follow to try to overcome your anxiety about the dentist:

  • Bring a trusted friend for support during the appointment.
  • Listen to your favorite music on noise-cancelling headphones during your visit.
  • Try our NuCalm – neurologically designed to relax you during your appointment.
  • If still unable to work up the nerve to make an appointment, call for a complimentary consultation to meet with Dr Meyer and his friendly team.

The environment of the dentist’s office matters a lot. We here at the Meyer Dental Group strive to make your visit as comfortable and stress-free as possible. At our dental office in Des Plaines, Illinois we have tried our best to create a calm, relaxing environment. We have a massage chair available for our patient’s relaxation needs. During the exam, we are happy to offer you a warm neck roll, cozy blankets, noise canceling headphones for you to listen to your favorite music or relax with NuCalm during your procedure. We strive to make Meyer Dental Group feel like home with our daily fresh baked cookies and individual brewed coffee and tea.

Whether you have a toothache or not, if you’ve been avoiding the dentist because of fear, the Meyer Dental Group can help. We’ll make your experience as stress-free and comfortable as we can. Call today for a consultation.

Des Plaines dentist IL, Dr. Meyer, will provide a solution to toothaches,

Are you ready for a different dental experience?

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We Believe Custom-Made Mouth Guards Offer More Benefits Than Store-Bought

We Believe Custom-Made Mouth Guards Offer More Benefits Than Store-Bought

Mouth guards, whether custom mouth guards or store-bought, it is a necessary thing.Whether you play a contact sport, are engaged in recreational activities, or your children have recently taken up skateboarding, you will need one.

Sure, you can quickly scoop one up at your local sporting goods store, and it could be adequate. However, broken or lost teeth are not something anyone wants to deal with; whether it is for themselves or their children. Worse, a jaw bone fracture or dislocation could leave permanent damage.

So, we ask you this: Would you want to put all of that pressure on a generic one-size-fits-all store-bought version? Furthermore, how much have you looked into custom mouth guards?

There is no need to worry. Your teeth (or your child’s teeth) are not in eminent danger. They can continue to use their store-bought version. In the meantime, we recommend you see a dentist in Des Plaines and Mount Prospect, IL, like Dr Tom Meyer here at Meyer Dental Group, to explore your options for a custom-made guard.

How Custom Mouth Guards Work

Custom mouth guards are designed to protect teeth, but your teeth exclusively — not someone else’s.

Custom-fitted guards are designed and made inside our dental office in Des Plaines, IL. According to WebMD, they are more expensive but worth every penny. The cost is slightly higher because your dentist must first take an impression of the teeth. This impression is then used to create a custom molded model. From there, a special material is used to craft the custom mouth guard.

The result, a mouthguard that fits every unique characteristic of your teeth — right down to shape, size, and placement.

Benefits To Using  Custom Mouth Guards

Not only are you receiving protection for your mouth but custom-made options carry a few key advantages, including:

1. Airway Exchange: If you’ve ever worn a mouthguard, you know that they can be uncomfortable. With a custom-made version, you will have better airway exchange and more comfort. Furthermore, they are less bulky than store-bought versions.

2. Better Performance: Yes, you pay a little more, but you get what you pay for here. Custom options decrease the probability of a traumatic injury to the mouth causing any damage (e.g. chipped teeth, broken teeth, abrasions, etc.).

See How Quickly Your Dentist In Des Plaines, Mount Prospect, and Arlington Heights Can Make A Custom Mouth Guard

Think it will take endless appointments?

Wrong. The first visit will take anywhere from 15 to 20 minutes and your second visit is completed typically in the same week for an additional 10 to 20 minutes out of your day.

If you are looking for a high-performance model, these are achieved using neuromuscular computerized technology — a fancy way of stating your jaw coordinates are precisely measured for oxygen exchange and stability. These take two hours in the office and about two weeks to finalize.

Now you can protect your teeth and keep doing the sports and activities you love.

Schedule your consultation for a custom mouth guard by visiting the dental team here at Meyer Dental Group. Call now at 847-827-6290.

 

Are you ready for a different dental experience?

Make an Appointment

Halloween Candy Buy Back is Back!

Halloween Candy Buy Back is Back!

Meyer Dental Group will be working with Packages4Patriots once again to collect uneaten, unopened Halloween candy for our US troops!

Did you know that global sugar consumption for kids increases by about 2% annually and currently sits at 50 million tons per year? This means parents need to be sure their kids teeth are being cared for more than ever.  Candy, as well as hurting children’s teeth, can lead to hyperactivity and weight gain.  In some cases, the wrong types of candy can also lead to broken teeth and damaged braces.

We will be collecting candy the week of Halloween during regular business hours.  Children are welcome to come by any time to drop off candy in exchange for $1 per pound and a goody bag including a toothbrush and toothpaste! Any candy donations from adults who would like to find a good home for their unused candy this Halloween will gratefully be accepted as well.

All collected candy will be given to Packages4Patriots who puts together care packages around the holidays and throughout the year to send to the men and woman overseas bringing smiles to those who have set out to protect our country!

This program has been very successful in the past year and we hope that 2016 is the best yet!

We hope you can participate in this year’s Meyer Dental Group Halloween Candy Buy Back!