Franklin Park Dental Associates, Ltd.
General Dentistry

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9767 West Franklin Avenue
Franklin Park, IL 60131
847-455-6663
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Academy of Laser Dentistry

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TO TELL THE TOOTH : Read Dr. Pietrini's current monthly article

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To Tell The Tooth
Read Dr. Pietrini's current monthly article from the Fra Noi newspaper.

 

Cosmetic Services...

Dr. Pietrini writes a monthly column for Fra Noi, an Italian newspaper. Articles related to the topic of Cosmetic Services are featured below. Click here to view this month's article

 

The White Stuff by Dr. Pietrini
A few years ago a best selling book was made into a movie, The Right Stuff, which was about the early days of jet test pilots and astronauts. Many of the scientific discoveries from aviation and the space race led to advances in medicine and dentistry. Some of the technology and treatment options we are able to offer patients are a result of these discoveries. As a young boy I remember one of the most popular toothpaste slogans at the time was, "You'll wonder where the yellow went, when you brush your teeth with Pepsodent." Today, with new and improved dental materials and modern technology, patients have numerous treatment options available to them to obtain "the white stuff."

Attempts to bleach or whiten teeth date back to the late 1800's. For almost one hundred years this treatment was primarily limited to teeth that were non-vital (the pulp containing little nerves and blood vessel was no longer alive). Dentists tried to use various types of bleaching agents to lighten discolored teeth. Hydrogen peroxide, which is often used a mouth rinse or can be found in some toothpastes as well as hair dyes, was the safest and most effective choice of bleaching agent. One of the earliest methods of treatment was to apply hydrogen peroxide to the teeth being treated and then place a hot instrument or heating coil on the teeth until the patient started to feel discomfort. Fortunately, our options of materials and techniques have been improved.
Many brands of toothpaste contain abrasives and whiteners, which can reduce surface staining of teeth; but they have little effect on the deeper, darker stains. The two best methods of whitening teeth are treatments by your dentist in the office or supervised home care. Shortly after over-the-counter whitening kits became available, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) received many complaints for consumers about side effects from the use of commercial products. Most of the problems stem from poor fitting trays with chemicals that caused irritation to the gums and/or created tooth sensitivity.

Before starting treatment the patient should have a complete examination and evaluation of the condition of the teeth and gums to determine if he or she is a good candidate for treatment. There are three types of tooth discoloration. The most common is staining on the surface of teeth caused by highly colored food and drinks like berries, wine, tea and coffee and of course tobacco. Internal stains are discolorations that may have been caused by certain drugs like tetracyclines, overexposure to fluorides and stains from old dental filling materials. The third group is caused by a combination of staining due to aging. There are several factors that will determine what method of treatment is best and how long it will take. Teeth that are yellow with an even distribution of discoloration without white spots or dark bands will be the easiest to treat. Badly worn teeth or those with groves or pits in the enamel will present problems. If a patient has fillings or crowns present they will not lighten along with the surrounding tooth structure and may need to be replaced. Other problems that may affect treatment are tooth sensitivity and patient cooperation.

Your dentist will help you to decide which treatment options are ideal for you. Most patients will get excellent results with home care treatment alone. Plaster models are made from impressions taken of your teeth, which are used to fabricate custom-fitted, soft trays. After checking to see if the trays fit properly, your dental staff will show you how to place the bleaching gel into the tray. The active ingredient in the gel is a form of hydrogen peroxide, which comes in a variety of concentrations. Your dentist will help you determine which product is best for you and how long you will need to wear the trays. Within a period of two weeks the average patient should see their teeth lighten by several shades.

For people with more complicated cases or for patients who want to shorten the time it takes to complete treatment, a combination of in-office and home care treatment might be necessary. First your dentist will cover your gums with a rubber barrier or a protective plastic coating. A bleaching gel is then applied to the teeth and the chemical is activated with either a high intensity light or a laser. Studies have shown that heating the hydrogen peroxide gel by 15-20o F that it will double the rate of bleaching. If the patient has a pattern of the deeper, darker stains, more than one office treatment could be necessary. In almost all cases, follow up home whitening in addition to the office treatments will bring the best results. Ask your dentist for more details.


Zoom! Zoom! Zoom! by Dr. Pietrini

A popular automobile commercial uses the line—Zoom! Zoom! Zoom! In the dental market, Zoomä is professional whitening system. It has been featured on the hit television program Extreme Makeover. This in-office whitening system is one of many options being used today.

Attempts to bleach or whiten teeth date back to the late 1800’s. For almost one hundred years this treatment was primarily limited to teeth that were non-vital (the pulp containing little nerves and blood vessel was no longer alive). Dentists tried to use various types of bleaching agents to lighten discolored teeth. Hydrogen peroxide, which is often used a mouth rinse or can be found in some toothpastes as well as hair dyes, was the safest and most effective choice of bleaching agent. One of the earliest methods of treatment was to apply hydrogen peroxide to the teeth being treated and then place a hot instrument or heating coil on the teeth until the patient started to feel discomfort. Fortunately, our options of materials and techniques have been improved.

Before starting treatment the patient should have a complete examination and evaluation of the condition of the teeth and gums to determine if he or she is a good candidate for treatment. There are three types of tooth discoloration. The most common is staining on the surface of teeth caused by highly colored food and drinks like berries, wine, tea and coffee and of course tobacco. Internal stains are discolorations that may have been caused by certain drugs like tetracyclines, overexposure to fluorides and stains from old dental filling materials. The third group is caused by a combination of staining due to aging. There are several factors that will determine what method of treatment is best and how long it will take. Teeth that are yellow with an even distribution of discoloration without white spots or dark bands will be the easiest to treat. Badly worn teeth or those with groves or pits in the enamel will present problems. If a patient has fillings or crowns present they will not lighten along with the surrounding tooth structure and may need to be replaced. Other problems that may affect treatment are tooth sensitivity and patient cooperation.    

Your dentist will help you to decide which treatment options are ideal for you. Most patients will get excellent results with home care treatment alone. Plaster models are made from impressions taken of your teeth, which are used to fabricate custom-fitted, soft trays. After checking to see if the trays fit properly, your dental staff will show you how to place the bleaching gel into the tray. The active ingredient in the gel is a form of hydrogen peroxide, which comes in a variety of concentrations. Your dentist will help you determine which product is best for you and how long you will need to wear the trays. Within a period of two weeks the average patient should see their teeth lighten by several shades.

For people with more complicated cases or for patients who want to shorten the time it takes to complete treatment, a combination of in-office and home care treatment might be necessary. First your dentist will cover your gums with a rubber barrier or a protective plastic coating. A bleaching gel is then applied to the teeth and the chemical is activated with either a high intensity light or a laser. Studies have shown that heating the hydrogen peroxide gel by 15-20o F that it will double the rate of bleaching. If the patient has a pattern of the deeper, darker stains, more than one office treatment could be necessary. In almost all cases, follow up home whitening in addition to the office treatments will bring the best results. Ask your dentist for more details.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

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