• Sports Dentistry 101

    If you’ve played sports or you have children who play sports, you’ve probably heard of sports dentistry. Do you know what it is? Why not ask the experts, the team dentist for the Chicago Blackhawks, UAD! Why is sports dentistry a type of dentistry, and how does it differ from regular dentistry? Here we offer a few facts about sports dentistry that may interest you.

    • Sports dentistry is a relatively new field. It’s a quickly growing one, though, and with good reason. Sports dentistry deals with the prevention and treatment of both dental injuries and oral diseases that are associated with sports and exercises. Athletes are at risk of injuries, including facial bone fractures and injuries to both the hard and soft tissue of the mouth, that require the attention of an expert in sports dentistry.
    • Young athletes, in particular, benefit from sports dentistry services. An estimated 30 million children in the United States play organized sports, and injuries to the face and mouth can cause scarring or damage to the child’s permanent teeth. Pediatric sports dentists can educate coaches, parents, and young players on the prevention of injuries, as well as assisting with treatment.
    • Contact sports can cause injuries, but other sports can as well. Most people know that dental injuries are common in sports such as hockey and boxing. Would it surprise you to know, for instance, that swimmers also benefit from sports dentistry? People who swim more than six hours a week, exposing their teeth to chemically treated water, can develop hard, brown deposits on their teeth known as swimmers’ calculus, which requires the attention of a dentist.
    • Sports dentists can create custom mouthguards to protect against injury. While stock mouthguards and self-adapting (boil and bite) mouthguards do offer protection against injury, custom-made mouthguards are the most effective way to protect athletes’ mouths. Made by a sports dentist, they’re created from an impression of the athlete’s mouth, so that they’re comfortable and more likely to stay in place than other models.
    • Sports dentistry prevents long-term damage and saves you money. By helping people find the right protective gear and advising them on how to avoid injuries, sports dentists help protect both children and adults from lasting damage. What’s more, seeking the advice and care of a sports dentist before starting a sport is far less expensive than dealing with the consequences of oral or facial injuries down the line. Even a custom mouthguard, which is more expensive than other models, will save you money by protecting the mouth from damage.

    If you’re in need of sports dentistry services in Chicago, you can have confidence in the team at University Associates in Dentistry. Well aware of the fact that prevention and adequate preparation are the key elements in minimizing sports injuries, UAD treats patients in the office and onsite, and serves as the team dentist for the Chicago Blackhawks. You can make a dentist appointment in Chicago by calling (312) 704-5511, or visit our website for more information or to set up a complimentary consultation.

     

     

  • What Exactly is in Toothpaste?

    People have been finding ways to clean their teeth for as long as they’ve had teeth, but toothpaste as we know it is a relatively new innovation. If you’re like most people, you probably have a favorite brand of toothpaste, but it’s also probable that you’ve never given too much thought as to what’s in it. Even if you have taken time to read the ingredients on the label, you may not know what those ingredients are. Watch this video, and you’ll get an overview of what’s in the toothpaste you use.

    The video does a great job at explaining what’s in toothpaste, and even offers a recipe for homemade toothpaste, but there are a few things it doesn’t address. One important note about toothpaste is that it is possible to be allergic to it. Toothpaste includes many ingredients that can cause allergic reactions, including flavorings, preservatives, and even fluoride. If you’re allergic, you might experience mouth swelling, canker sores, cracking at the corners of the mouth, dry, chapped lips, gum irritation, or an upset stomach. You may also experience a rash or peeling skin around the mouth, or lips that are scaly and itchy. A toothpaste allergy can be confirmed by a patch test, so if you think you may be allergic, talk to your doctor.

    If you are allergic to something found in toothpaste, it’s good to identify the exact allergen so that you can seek out a toothpaste that doesn’t contain that particular ingredient. You might have better luck with a different flavor of toothpaste, or a toothpaste from a brand that specializes in natural products. Of course you can also make your own toothpaste, using ingredients such as coconut oil and baking soda.

    The right toothpaste can help keep your mouth healthy, and so can regular dental checkups. At your appointment at University Associates in Dentistry, ask your dentist about the best type of toothpaste for you.  You can make a dentist appointment in Chicago by calling (312) 704-5511, or visit our website for more information or to set up a complimentary consultation.

     

  • Examining the Benefits of Cosmetic Dentistry

    When you think of cosmetic dentistry, what comes to mind? Teeth whitening is the most common cosmetic procedure, but there are several other popular procedures, including dental implants, porcelain veneers and crowns, shaping, and bonding, that can improve your smile and your overall look. Cosmetic dentistry is versatile and can correct various flaws such as stains, misshapen or small teeth, chips, cracks, gapped teeth, and even ragged gum looks. Beyond making you look better, though, cosmetic dentistry offers many benefits.

    • Cosmetic dentistry can boost your confidence. You’ll look younger and more attractive after your cosmetic dental procedure, and that can help you to feel more confident when interacting with others. This can make it easier to succeed in both social and business situations.
    • Your career prospects may improve after cosmetic dentistry. A beautiful smile makes a strong first impression, allowing you to put your best foot forward in every situation. You may not rely on your looks to advance in your career, but when you look better and feel more confident, you’re more likely to take on greater responsibility and show leadership skills. No matter what your field may be, a confident demeanor can help you in all aspects as you move forward.
    • Some cosmetic dentistry procedures can strengthen your teeth. Cosmetic dentistry is performed in a way that doesn’t just improve the appearance of your teeth, but can actually make them stronger, by reinforcing weak spots or hairline fractures. Stronger teeth make it easier to eat your favorite foods and are less likely to be vulnerable to sensitivity and decay.
    • Caring for your teeth can boost your overall health. Fixing a broken, cracked, or chipped tooth doesn’t just restore your smile, it also protects against further dental damage. A healthy mouth reduces your risk of health issues such as diabetes, heart disease, kidney problems, and pancreatic and oral cancer. Poor oral health can cause headaches and joint pain, but having your smile perfected through cosmetic dentistry gives you added incentive to care for that smile and improve your health.

    If you’re ready to improve your life with cosmetic dentistry, it’s time to make an appointment at University Associates in Dentistry. Under the direction of Dr. Martin Marcus and Dr. Russell Baer, Dr Stuart Schelkopf and Dr Lauren Zalay, the UAD dental team provides outstanding restorative aesthetic dentistry that can make a big difference in the way you look and feel. You can call (312) 704-5511 to make a dental appointment in Chicago, or visit our website for more information or to set up a complimentary consultation.

     

  • Forget These Outdated Myths About Dentistry

    Your dentist is an important member of your healthcare team, but sometimes, misconceptions about dentistry keep people from getting the care that they need. Maybe the idea that a procedure is painful has left you fearful of making an appointment, or perhaps a myth about an oral health problem has led you to dismiss your symptoms. Could myths and misconceptions be standing in the way of you seeing your dentist when you need to? Here are some myths about dentistry that definitely need to be dismissed.

     

    Myth: You should brush your teeth as much as possible.

    You may assume that if brushing your teeth twice a day is good, then brushing them more often is even better. However, brushing your teeth too often can actually do damage. Over-brushing can damage the enamel on your teeth, which triggers sensitivity and leaves your teeth more vulnerable to decay. Brushing twice a day is sufficient for most people.

     

    Myth: Fluoride is toxic.

    Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that can help to strengthen your tooth enamel and reduce the risk of cavities. However, some people have the idea that it is dangerous and can increase the risk of cancer, arthritis, and kidney disease. In reality, fluoride is safe when used in appropriate amounts. It would be difficult for most people to get too much fluoride, but if you’re concerned, talk to your dentist about what is right for you.

     

    Myth: Fillings and root canals hurt.

    For any treatment that could potentially cause discomfort, your dentist will use local anesthesia to make sure that you don’t feel a thing. Most people are surprised after getting a filling or root canal that their procedure didn’t hurt and that they experienced only mild discomfort, if any, after the procedure.

     

    At University Associates in Dentistry, we use the very latest technologies to deliver quality general and cosmetic dentistry treatments, including veneers, teeth implants, and teeth whitening in Chicago. Schedule your appointment today by calling (312) 704-5511.

  • How to Fight Your Gag Reflex at the Dentist

    For some people, going to the dentist means one thing: fighting with their gag reflex. Although some people don’t give the idea of gagging at the dentist a second thought, for others, a sensitive gag reflex can make it difficult to get dental care and may cause anxiety during dental appointments. Fortunately, you don’t have to be a victim to your gag reflex. There are things you can do to make getting dental care more comfortable and to avoid gagging during treatment. Start by talking to your dentist. These tips will also help.

     

    Bring a Distraction

    Your gag reflex is part physiological response and part psychological trigger. If you’ve experienced problems with gagging in the past, your anxiety about it happening again makes you more likely to gag. Using a distraction can prevent you from concentrating on gagging so you’re less likely to experience it. Holding a stress ball to squeeze during your appointment can help, as can bringing headphones and listening to music. Before your appointment, you can even practice self-hypnosis techniques so you can calm yourself down and avoid gagging.

     

    Don’t Swallow Saliva

    It’s normal to worry about saliva building up in your mouth or spilling out when you’re getting dental care. Many patients try to swallow their saliva during dental appointments to avoid embarrassment, but doing so is likely to make you gag. Your dentist can use a suction wand to clear out saliva from your mouth periodically when it gets in the way, so you don’t have to worry about it when you’re getting care.

     

    Resist Mouth Breathing

    When your mouth is open, it’s natural to default to breathing through it, but doing so will only make you more likely to gag. Breathe through your nose instead to reduce your gag reflex. Concentrating on breathing through your nose may also help to distract you from gagging.

     

    The team at University Associates in Dentistry is committed to making every patient comfortable during treatment, whether he or she comes in for a general dentistry check-up or extensive cosmetic dentistry care in Chicago. Schedule your dental consultation today by calling (312) 704-5511.

  • What to Expect at Your Complementary Consultation

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    When you become a patient at University Associates in Dentistry, you’ll quickly discover why our office is unlike the rest. Our dentists take pride in helping our patients transform their smiles, and we take a personalized approach to care that includes extensive patient education. During your complementary dental consultation, we’ll take the time to review your full health history to ensure that your treatment recommendations are appropriate for you. We’ll also talk about your existing dental conditions and concerns, which may include cosmetic issues you’d like to improve.

    Once your dentist has gotten to know you, he or she will develop your customized treatment plan. Take your time to explore your options, and ask all of your questions. We won’t move forward until you’re fully informed and comfortable with your choices. If you’re planning a procedure, such as dental implants, you may want to speak with some of our other patients or staff members who have gone through the same thing. We’ll be happy to arrange this for you—just ask.

    University Associates in Dentistry is a state-of-the-art dental office with warm, courteous professionals who genuinely care about each of our patients. Call us at (312) 704-5511 today to schedule your dental consultation in Chicago.

  • The Link Between Acidic Foods and Your Dental Health

    The Link Between Acidic Foods and Your Dental Health

    Taking care of your oral health has many facets to it, and your nutrition is an important one. Acidic foods can have a negative impact on your teeth, but you can protect yourself by knowing what you should and shouldn’t eat. You can also work with your dentist to minimize the damage and maintain your beautiful smile. Here’s a look at the link between acidic foods and dental health.

    What’s Going On

    Certain types of foods and beverages are more acidic than others, and the acids in these products can wear away your tooth enamel. Any acidic food debris left on your enamel can trigger demineralization, which can make your teeth more sensitive. The more demineralization occurs, the closer your dentin will get to being exposed. Remember that brushing your teeth immediately after eating acidic foods can be counterproductive, so drink some water and wait a few minutes before you brush your teeth after a meal.

    Which Foods to Be Careful With

    If you’re looking to modify your diet so you can keep your dentist happy and your teeth healthy, you should know what foods to stay away from. Ketchup, hot sauce, and products made with tomatoes are acidic, as are lemons, limes, and oranges. Wine and coffee can also wear away at your enamel and cause sensitivity and discomfort. Enjoy these foods, but try to eat them in moderation.

    What You Can Do

    You don’t have to avoid these foods entirely in order to take care of your oral health. Foods like citrus fruits and berries can be good for you, so you might want to keep them in your diet. Remember to drink water while you eat these types of foods and let your saliva clean out the acidity. Visiting your dentist for regular cleanings can also help to keep you healthy.

    In addition to avoiding (or at least cutting back) certain types of foods and drinking plenty of water, be sure to visit your dentist in Chicago on a routine basis. Don’t forget to call University Associates in Dentistry at (312) 704-5511 whenever you are in need of teeth bonding, periodontics, or Invisalign, or stop by our offices to meet with us.

  • Spotlight on the Introduction of Western Dentistry in Japan

    We all share the same planet, but sometimes it takes a while for one culture to influence another. This is why it wasn’t until the 19th century that Western dentistry made its way to Japan, although this was before cosmetic dentistry became what it is today. Continue on to find out how Western dentistry was introduced in Japan.

    Although dentistry continues to become more and more sophisticated, modern Western dentistry first appeared in Japan in the middle of the 19th century. W.C. Eastlack traveled from America to Hong Kong and Shanghai before ending up in Japan, where he would introduce Western dental principles at his practices. As his colleagues made their way over to set up practices of their own, Japanese dental assistants got the opportunity to experience these principles in a hands-on setting. This paved the way for Japan to introduce its own dental law in the early 20th century.

    At University Associates in Dentistry, we use modern techniques and information to help our patients enjoy excellent oral health. Our trustworthy professionals specialize in porcelain veneers, permanent dental implants, and cosmetic dentistry in Chicago as a whole. Give us a call at (312) 704-5511 or visit our website for details.

  • Recognizing the Importance of Dental Consultations

    dentist chicago

    Dental consultations are different from dental checkups and cleanings. If you have a concern or question about your dental health or a procedure, then you can schedule a complimentary dental consultation with your dentist. This appointment is a personal meeting to ensure that you are completely informed of your options. Continue reading to see why dental consultations are important.

    You can ask questions.
    If you have questions about dental procedures, your dental health or dental care, then a consultation is the best way to have them answered. A dental consultation is focused on providing as much information for you to make an informed decision about your dental care. During your consultation, your dentist will provide answers, but he will also ask leading questions to understand your concerns. This is a necessary interaction to ensure that you can receive the best and most comprehensive care.

    You can learn about procedures.
    You can learn about all of the available procedures to address your concerns during your dental consultation. For example, you may think that missing teeth cannot be fixed, but you will find out about dental crowns, teeth implants, and dental bridges during a consultation. There are several procedures that can address a multitude of dental concerns, so book a dental consultation soon to find out which procedure is right for you.

    You can receive dental care tips.
    Another crucial element of a dental consultation is learning more about at-home dental care. Your dentist can give you different resources, products, and strategies to address your daily dental care. For example, your dentist can show you the proper way to brush and floss your teeth to ensure that your teeth are healthy. Your dentist may also have samples of toothpastes or mouthwashes that you can try. These care tips and samples are necessary to keep your teeth strong and your gums healthy.

    Call University Associates in Dentistry at (312) 704-5511 to book a complimentary dental consultation in Chicago. Our dentists are dedicated to giving you the most up-to-date information and care to address your concerns.

  • How the DEXIS CariVu Works

    The DEXIS CariVu is an innovative tool that allows dentists to identify caries in a patient’s teeth and jawbone without using X-rays. This portable device uses infrared light instead of radiation, so it can be used as an alternative to X-rays for patients who do not want to be exposed to any level of radiation. It can also be used in combination with X-rays to help identify areas of decay. In this video, several dentists explain why the DEXIS CariVu has become so invaluable to their work with patients.

    If you’re in need of a dentist in Chicago , call University Associates in Dentistry at (312) 704-5511 to schedule an appointment. Our general dentists use state-of-the-art equipment to provide our patients with the best quality care possible.