Monthly Archives: September 2018

Protecting Yourself from Dental Implant Disaster

I read a story about this poor woman who’d suffered severe damage to her jaw and health because of dental implants by a doctor called Dr. Mansueto. Is there a way to protect yourself from that type of issue?

Alan

Dear Alan,

Dental Implant Diagram

I know the case you’re referring to. First, I’ll say there were quite of few red flags in connection with this particular case. Though, a patient is never to blame in those cases. It’s quite natural to trust your caregiver.

Red Flag: He Met Patients at His Home

Professionals won’t meet patients at their home. They’d have you come into an office setting. In this case, he wasn’t even a dentist. He’d lost his license some time ago. You should be aware there are websites in which you can check whether or not someone is currently licensed. You can also find out if they’ve had any actions taken against them.

Red Flag: He Left the Country for Procedures

He also convinced patients to go over the border to get their surgical procedure done. I can only guess he convinced them to go by telling them it was to save expensive American fees. Reputable dentists discourage what is known as “dental tourism”. They don’t do that in order to keep patients, but rather to protect them.

For instance, Mexico has no regulations for things like sterilization of equipment. It’s completely at the discretion of the dentist. And what recourse do you have if you develop an infection from non-sterilized equipment? Absolutely none.

Staying Safe with Dental Implants

The most important decision you make is in choosing the dentist to do your dental implants. You want to make sure the dentist has taken extensive training in implants post dental school. It’s also very helpful if you find a dentist experienced in the surgical part of the procedure and not just the restoration. A lot of miscommunication happens when you have two separate professionals working on your implant case. But, if your dentist can do the surgery as well, you reduce that risk.

Another thing to do is check their reviews. Have previous patients had a good experience with the dentist? Was he pleasant to work with?

It never hurts to ask to see samples of their work. It won’t be that much fun having a newly restored tooth if the dentist is terrible at the cosmetic side of things. You want to know that he can make a porcelain crown which looks natural and blends in perfectly with your other teeth.

Update Your Smile Simultaneously as Dental Implants

Whenever you have dental work done where you’ll be getting some type of restoration, it’s a good time to think about whether or not you’ll want teeth whitening. The restoration’s color is permanent once it’s finished. Teeth whitening only works on natural tooth structure. If you’ll want a whiter smile, do it before you have the implant crown made. That way it can be made to match your more youthful looking smile.

This blog is brought to you by Libertyville Cosmetic Dentist Dr. David Potts.

Do Crest Whitestrips Work?

I have a reunion coming up and would like to brighten my teeth a bit. They’re starting to show their age. I asked my dentist and he said I could just get some of those over-the-counter white strips. He is sort of a bread and butter practice and doesn’t offer many special services. That’s always suited me as I don’t have any complicated needs. I just want to be sure Crest is the right brand to get.

Felicia

Dear Felicia,

Teeth Whitening Trays
There are many teeth whitening options

When it comes to bleaching your teeth, many things will work, including Crest Whitestrips. There are three important differences in professional teeth whitening and over-the-counter whitening you need to be aware of though, before making a decision.

Teeth Whitening Difference One: Strength

The over-the-counter options will work, but they are by law very weak. It will take a large number of treatments to get anywhere close to the same results you could get with a dental professional. In the end, you’ll probably end up paying more for less obvious results.

Teeth Whitening Difference Two: Coverage

Most white strips you purchase at a store only cover about six teeth. Many, if not most, people’s smiles are wider than that. This will give you an uneven smile. Your first six teeth will be whiter than the adjacent teeth, which will look strange.

The solution to this is to use extra strips on the adjacent teeth. Of course, then you’re talking about having to purchase triple the number of kits. The whitening your dentist provides will whiten every tooth.

Teeth Whitening Difference Three: Protection

There are some things which can go wrong during the teeth whitening process, especially with your gums. When you’re under the care of a dentist, they keep an eye out for signs of problems and take steps to protect you.

Dental Work and Teeth Whitening

One thing to be aware of is any type of bleaching procedure, even professional, will only work on natural tooth structure. If you have a dental crown or any other type of dental work, its color will not change. If you want it to match, you’ll have to replace it after your whitening is done.

Depending on the date of your reunion, you may want super fast results. The take-home trays your dentist provides can take a few weeks to get your teeth as white as they possibly can. If you’re in a hurry, Zoom Whitening is an in-office procedure which only takes one appointment. You’ll come out of the dentist’s office with shiny white teeth.

If you decide to go the professional route, it will not require you to switch caregivers. I’d simply call another dental office which offers whitening and tell them your dentist doesn’t offer this service and you simply want to come there for the one procedure. If you’ve recently had your teeth cleaned, that shouldn’t be a problem. If you haven’t had a recent cleaning they may require it. That’s for your benefit, otherwise your results could be splotchy.

This blog is brought to you by Libertyville Dentist Dr. David Potts.