What is Invisalign?

Choosing to straighten your teeth is a big decision that affects not only your appearance, but also your lifestyle. Having straight teeth can have an impact on your oral health and it can impact your professional and social life as well.

Invisalign® takes a modern approach to straightening teeth, using a custom-made series of aligners. These aligner trays are made of smooth, comfortable and virtually invisible plastic that are worn over the teeth.

There are no metal brackets to attach and no wires to tighten. A new set of aligners are started approximately every two weeks, until treatment is complete. The average treatment time is about one year.

Wearing the aligners consistently gradually and gently shifts the teeth into place, based on the exact movements the dentist or orthodontist plans.

The aligners are removable, allowing regular brushing and flossing. Metal braces are difficult to clean and this can contribute to cavities. The Invisalign treatment ensures that teeth and gums stay healthy through proper oral hygiene.

Many dental insurance plans allow orthodontic coverage for both children and adults.  Coverage details can be obtained from the provider.

You’ll achieve a great smile with little interference in your daily life. The best part about the whole process is that most people won’t even know you’re straightening your teeth.

You can find more information at: http://www.brettblacher.com/Invisalign.php

Source: Invisalign.com

The best way to care for your oral appliance

Do you wear dentures or removable aligners? What about a night guard or retainer? Any oral appliance you may have to wear requires proper care and cleaning to keep it functioning correctly, and to keep your smile looking great. It is important to keep in mind that all appliances should be cleaned every day, and stored in an appropriate environment when not in use.

Cleaning your appliance will help to prevent the following:

  • Discoloration of the appliance
  • Buildup of calculus and plaque
  • Oral thrush
  • Cold sores
  • Gingivitis

So what do you need to do to keep your oral appliance clean?

  • Gently brush the inside and outside with a soft brush and toothpaste. This will scrape away any plaque that has built up and will remove stains. Do this between wears.
  • Rinse in lukewarm water. This will wash away any food or other particles that may have gotten into the appliance.
  • Keep the appliance stored properly. Depending on which appliance you use and the material it is made of, it will require a specific method of storage.
  • Dentures should be stored in fresh, clean water.
  • Retainers and night guards should be stored in a dry case that will be provided from your dentist.
  • Clean the appliance’s storage case. As your appliance spends some time in a case, the case should remain clean as well. Rinse with water and dry before placing the appliance inside.
  • Visit your dentist regularly. He or she will make sure your appliance is doing its job properly and can suggest other cleaning methods if necessary.

If you have any other questions, be sure to give us a call at 630-916-0701 or visit our website at www.brettblacher.com

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What are Botox and Juvederm treatments all about?

Have you been noticing signs of aging when you look in the mirror? Have years of smiling, frowning and sun exposure taken a toll on the appearance of your skin? Our office offers Botox© and Juvederm© XC, non-surgical treatments that give the face a younger, fresher appearance.

You know how they say it takes more muscles to frown than to smile? This is true! When we frown, the muscles between our eyebrows furrow. Over time, you may begin to notice frown lines appear in this area. Botox© is a prescribed medicine injected into the muscles between the eyebrows, blocking nerve impulses and reducing muscle activity that causes wrinkles. No surgery, no recovery time, and almost immediate results!

Smiling and laughing are good for you, but just like frowning, can lead to wrinkles, this time around the lips and mouth. These lines are a normal part of aging, but that doesn’t mean you have to live with them! Juvederm© XC is a gel filler designed to fill the soft tissue in your skin, effectively smoothing away the wrinkles around your mouth and nose. After just one treatment you will find natural-looking results that can last for up to a year.

Before committing to either Botox© or Juvederm© XC, you should consult with a doctor to ensure you are an appropriate candidate. Neither procedure requires anesthesia, nor have any recovery period. You will begin seeing results within minutes of treatment. You may experience minor side effects such as swelling, redness and mild tenderness – this is not uncommon, but if it persists, you should see your doctor.

Are you interested in learning more about these procedures? Contact our office to learn more and speak with our Botox© and Juvederm© specialist, Dr. Pam Brosnan. She will work with you to determine a specific treatment tailored to your needs.

Give us a call at 630-916-0701.

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How to have fresh breath

Have you ever had a conversation with someone whose breath smelled so bad, you could barely stand it? Also known as halitosis, bad breath isn’t just embarrassing, it can be a sign of a larger oral or overall health issue. Mouth infections, conditions of the throat and nose, medications you may be taking and some diseases could be the source of your bad breath. So what are your treatment options?

The most effective treatment for you will depend on the cause of your halitosis. If bad breath is stemming from built-up plaque and bacteria on teeth, your dentist may recommend a special toothpaste or mouth rinse. Certain toothpastes contain antibacterial agents that kill plaque-causing bacteria. Mouthwash and other rinses that are alcohol free will prevent odor production.

If you try these methods on your own and still find you have smelly breath, it is time to see your dentist. You may have a form of gum disease, such as gingivitis, or the more serious periodontal disease. Such infections may cause the gums to separate from the teeth, leaving open pockets that accumulate bacteria. Often this bacteria can only be removed by your dentist. If gum disease is in a severe stage, loss of teeth may occur..

You can keep your breath fresh by practicing proper oral health. Brush your teeth as soon as possible after meals, and always brush your tongue – it harbors a lot of bacteria. Avoid dry mouth by drinking plenty of water and staying away from sugary, sticky food and drink. Replace your toothbrush every three to four months (when it starts to fray.)  Last but not least, don’t neglect your dentist! He or she will make sure your mouth is healthy and can recommend treatment options for your bad breath.


Via Mayo Clinic

The answer is prevention

Looking for the best way to save money on dental care? The answer is prevention. Common dental problems such as tooth decay, cavities and gum disease are preventable, as long as you take proper care of gums and teeth. Keep your mouth healthy by brushing and flossing regularly, maintaining a healthy diet and scheduling regular dental visits.

Your daily, at-home care is the first step in prevention. Spending just a few minutes every morning and night makes a huge difference in your oral health. When we eat, bacteria stays on and between teeth, mixing with the existing “good” bacteria in our mouths and creating plaque and other acid. The longer this plaque remains, the worse effects it has. Eventually this plaque can lead to cavities, gum disease and tartar build up, which is hard to remove with regular brushing and flossing.

The second step in maintaining a healthy smile is thinking about what you eat. A balanced, low-carb and low-sugar diet will keep the buildup of plaque at bay, minimizing the risk for periodontitis, tooth decay and a wide array of other complications. Carbohydrates break down to sugars that stick to teeth and almost immediately begin attacking enamel, serving as a catalyst for decay and cavity production.

Last, but certainly not least, you should be visiting your dentist every six months to maintain proper oral health. Even those who brush and floss daily are unable to reach all areas inside the mouth – and only your dentist has the tools and skills to do so thoroughly. Your dentist will also spot any potential or existing issues, and treat them before they become worse. Leaving oral health problems untreated will lead to more extensive and expensive treatment in the future.

Are you practicing proper oral care? If you have any other questions about how you can keep your teeth healthy or would like to schedule an appointment, visit our site or call our office at (630) 916-0701.