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No one is immune to bad breath: whether it’s a quick bout or a lingering problem, everyone has stinky breath at some point. Popping a mint or piece of gum covers up the smell, but only temporarily (it’s similar to spraying cologne to cover up body odor). For longer-lasting fresh breath, try these tips from Dr. Jack Manikowski, a Chicago dentist at Lincoln Park Smiles.
Your mouth is home to 700 kinds of bacteria that emit an odorous byproduct as they interact with food. Getting rid of food particles and keeping the teeth clean are essential in the battle against bad breath. Brush your teeth thoroughly twice a day and floss at least once a day. Visit Dr. Jack twice a year for a dental exam and professional cleaning.
The rough surface of the tongue is a haven for bacteria; it builds up in the ridges of the tongue and causes pungent breath. Use a tongue scraper and make a few strokes down the tongue from back to front to dislodge food debris and bacteria. Do this once daily.
Most people are usually careful around garlic and onions, which are common odor-causing foods. But did you know that certain foods are actually good for sweet-smelling breath? For example, crunchy fruits and veggies help remove plaque and food particles from the teeth. Cinnamon may kill odor-causing bacteria, and Greek yogurt lowers hydrogen sulfide (a bacteria byproduct that contributes to smelly breath). Foods rich in Vitamin C prevent bacteria from multiplying and neutralize odors from stinky foods. Fresh parsley is also great for the breath.
Drinking lots of water washes away odor-causing bacteria and food particles, and prevents dry mouth, which causes bad breath. Green tea has also been found to lower the levels of bacteria’s sulfur compounds that can cause odor.
Choose a mouthwash or rinse that has been approved by the American Dental Association (it will display the ADA seal on the label); this shows that the product is safe and effective not only for freshening breath, but also for reducing plaque and preventing gum disease. Mouthwash should be used in conjunction with brushing and flossing (not as a substitute!).
On occasion, mouth odor can signal a health issue like a sinus infection, diabetes, bronchitis, a problem with the gastrointestinal tract or organ malfunction. Schedule annual check-ups with your primary care physician to keep your health on track.
For more information about keeping your breath fresh and your teeth beautiful, please call Lincoln Park Smiles at (312) 337-1665 or send us an email.
A few years ago, The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry conducted a survey in which they asked adults, “What would you like to improve most about your smile?” The majority said they’d like whiter and brighter teeth. One of the most economical ways to enhance the color and appearance of stained or discolored teeth is through teeth whitening treatment.
Teeth whitening can be performed at our Chicago dental practice, Lincoln Park Smiles, or at home. Let’s compare the two methods.
The more popular teeth whitening option is our in-office treatment with Dr. Jack Manikowski, which is a more controlled, safer experience and produces better results. Also, if you are worried about gum sensitivity to the whitening products, Dr. Jack can manage those issues.
To begin, we will cover your gums with a special shield to prevent them from coming into contact with the whitening gel. We will thoroughly apply the whitening gel to your teeth and it will be kept in place for approximately 15 minutes. A special LED light may be used to accelerate the whitening product and break down tooth staining faster. The whitening gel will be removed, and the process will repeat up to 3 more times.
Results: teeth that look up to eight shades lighter, in less than an hour.
Some of our teeth whitening patients prefer to use a take-home whitening kit because it is more comfortable and convenient to whiten at home. They are also less expensive than in-office whitening. The kits include custom-fitted trays (similar to mouth guards) and a whitening gel.
The whitening trays can be worn at your leisure, while you’re watching television or loading up the dishwasher. Since they’re portable, you can take them with you on vacation.
The disadvantage of at-home teeth whitening is that it typically takes longer to see results than it would using the in-office systems.
Results: teeth that gradually start to look whiter.
If you’d like to learn more about in-office or at-home teeth whitening, we would be happy to answer your questions. Please call us at (312) 337-1665 or send us an email.
Crooked, crowded teeth are more than a visible eyesore – they are also a potential threat to your oral and overall health. Though orthodontic treatment is traditionally thought of as a rite of passage for adolescents, you are never too old to straighten your teeth and beautify your smile. Chicago Invisalign dentists Jack Manikowski and Karina Zaygermakher of Lincoln Park Smiles have put together a list of reasons why straightening your teeth is a good idea at any age.
Patients with crowded or crooked teeth have a harder time keeping them clean. Overlapping teeth create pockets where plaque can build up and bacteria can multiply. Straight, properly spaced teeth are easier to clean, as there is more room for the toothbrush bristles and floss to get in between the teeth and remove trapped food particles.
As previously noted, crooked or crowded teeth are a breeding ground for harmful bacteria and can lead to swollen, red, bleeding gums. When the teeth are straight and properly aligned, the gums can wrap around them more comfortably and securely, promoting a healthy defense against periodontal issues.
A proper bite (i.e., the way the teeth fit together when the jaw is closed) is essential to normal chewing and biting function. If the teeth are crooked, overlap or meet in an abnormal way (or don’t meet at all), chewing and biting becomes cumbersome. Straight teeth that are properly aligned help us bite and chew our food more effectively.
Alignment and bite problems can lead to excessive tooth wear and put unnecessary stress on the jaw joint and the supporting jawbone. Straightening the teeth and moving them into the proper position reduces the strain on the jaw and muscles.
Let’s not overlook the cosmetic benefits to straightening your teeth! With an attractive smile, you will likely experience a big boost in your self-confidence, which can enable you to pursue goals like advancing your career and widening your social network.
Traditional orthodontics (think: a mouthful of metal brackets and wires) are outdated. Invisalign, a more modern alternative, is a great option for orthodontic patients of any age. The advantages of Invisalign include the following:
If you’d like to learn more about Invisalign treatment, our Chicago dental team would be happy to speak with you. Please contact us today to schedule a consultation. Call (312) 337-1665 or send us an email.
It’s understandable that some of our patients experience anxiety or fear about dental treatment. Trips to the dentist aren’t as pleasurable as, say, spending an evening with friends or enjoying a warm cup of coffee and a good book. Your comfort and relaxation are important to our team of Chicago dentists and support staff. We have resources available to make your dental visit less anxiety-inducing. We can’t promise that your dental visit will be as enjoyable as a spa appointment or finding the perfect pair of jeans, but you should not be in pain at any point during treatment.
Sedation dentistry is an umbrella term for medications that relax and calm you during dental treatment. The sedation dentistry techniques that we employ are safe and effective, and may be suitable if you:
Sedation dentistry is sometimes called “sleep dentistry,” but this term is somewhat misleading. You will not be asleep during your treatment, but the medication will put you in a very relaxed, sleep-like state to prevent you from feeling discomfort. Some patients have described feeling sleepy or groggy during and right after treatment with sedation medications.
Not every doctor is able to offer sedation dentistry techniques. According to the American Dental Association, dentists must have special training in sedation techniques, medications and equipment in order to practice sedation dentistry. Dentists must also be trained to properly analyze a patient’s medical history to ensure that the use of sedative techniques is appropriate and safe in each case. The Illinois State Dental Society requires Chicago sedation dentists to meet certain educational requirements to become licensed to provide conscious sedation or general anesthesia to patients.
In general terms, sedation dentistry helps you attain and maintain a relaxed, safe and pain-free state through the use of medication. There are different ways to administer the medication. Medication can either be:
The technique used in your case depends on your preferences and level of comfort.
If you have chosen to take oral sedation medication, you will need to take it approximately 30 minutes prior to your appointment to give the medicine time to take effect. You will need to have someone drive you to and from your appointment. Once at our office, you will feel extremely relaxed and perhaps a little tired. You will be able to respond to our dentists’ verbal directions, but you will have very little recollection of your visit after it is over.
Nitrous oxide is more commonly referred to as “laughing gas,” and it is great if you suffer from mild to moderate dental anxiety. We will slip a mask over your mouth and you will breathe in the nitrous oxide, which will put you in a relaxed conscious state. We can adjust the delivery of the laughing gas as needed during your appointment, according to your level of anxiety.
The last option is intravenous (IV) sedation which is delivered via injection directly into the blood vessels in the hand or arm. If you are very anxious around needles, we don’t recommend this option, and will suggest one of the alternatives.
To learn more about how we can make your dental appointment a calm and relaxed experience through sedation dentistry, please contact Lincoln Park Smiles at (312) 337-1665, or by sending us an email.
The first official day of spring is nearing, and bringing with it feelings of fresh, new beginnings. Spring is the perfect season to think about rejuvenating your appearance and pampering yourself. If you are feeling motivated to make over your smile, our Chicago cosmetic dentists, Drs. Jack Manikowski and Karina Zaygermakher, have a few ideas for you to consider.
Teeth whitening treatment improves the color of your teeth and adds a sparkle to your smile. There are two types of teeth whitening treatments: at-home and in-office. DIY at-home kits are usually cheaper; however, for many of our patients, these products don’t produce the desired results (and some can even be harmful to the teeth). We offer in-office teeth whitening treatments, which are quick, convenient and effective.
During an informative consultation, we will work with you to determine the root cause of your tooth discoloration, which will help us to come up with a plan that targets your individual needs. Depending on your ideal cosmetic outcome, we may recommend one treatment or a series of several sessions.
Old silver or metal fillings can draw attention from an otherwise beautiful set of teeth. Silver and metal are outdated and should be replaced with a more contemporary material. Replacing old fillings with white fillings will eliminate the cosmetic eyesore of metal and can brighten up the overall appearance of your smile. Our cosmetic dentistry Chicago office uses white or tooth-colored filling material that blends in beautifully with the surrounding teeth. If we are replacing a silver or metal restoration, we will color-match the acrylic resin filling to the exact shade of your natural tooth. The filling material will also mimic the translucent quality of natural tooth enamel.
If you want dramatic, high-wattage results, we may recommend a set of porcelain veneers. Veneers are small pieces of natural-looking porcelain that slip over the surface of the teeth to conceal dental imperfections and make your smile look like a movie star’s. We can place porcelain veneers to improve the symmetry of the teeth, hide chips or small cracks and permanently whiten or brighten a dim-looking smile. At our office, we refer to veneers as the “gold standard” of cosmetic dental treatment because of their versatility and effectiveness.
If you’re interested in learning more about these smile-brightening options, please contact our cosmetic dentists in Chicago by calling (312) 337-1665 or sending us an email.
Need proof? A few years ago, the National Sleep Foundation conducted a survey in which more than a third of respondents admitted their partner’s disruptive sleep habits affected the quality of their relationship.
Our Chicago sleep apnea team, Drs. Jack Manikowski and Karina Zaygermakher, has heard from numerous patients about the ways that sleep apnea affects relationships. If you relate to the scenarios described below, we encourage you to contact us today to explore your treatment options.
Chronic snoring is one of the markers of obstructive sleep apnea. You may not realize you snore incessantly, but your partner probably does! A study from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., reported that spouses of snorers woke up nearly as many times during the night as the snorer (average of 21 times compared to the snorer’s 27 times). Researchers in Finland found that half of bed partners of snorers reported that they were disturbed every night or almost every night by their partner snoring. One third of the partners described relationship problems stemming from chronic snoring.
However, there is hope: researchers from the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Ariz., found that once a snorer participating in their study received treatment, their spouses experienced a surge in their quality of life.
It’s also common for someone with sleep apnea to involuntarily choke or gasp during their sleep. Normally these noises indicate some sort of emergency, so choking or gasping can be disruptive and ruin a good night’s sleep for your partner.
Without enough quality sleep, you may feel sluggish throughout the day, and have trouble focusing, demonstrate poor judgment or experience memory loss or mood swings (all of which can affect your relationship).
If you’re repeatedly failing to get a good night’s rest because of sleep apnea, you probably feel drowsy and ready for a nap during the day. This may cause disagreements with an active partner who wants help with errands, taking care of the children or simply companionship.
Surprisingly, another side effect of sleep apnea is a low libido. A survey from the National Sleep Foundation found that 17 to 23 percent of respondents noted an effect of disruptive sleep habits on their sexual relationships and cited being “too sleepy” to be intimate.
As Valentine’s Day approaches, make a promise to yourself (and your significant other!) to do something about sleep apnea. Contact Lincoln Park Smiles today to speak with Drs. Manikowski and Zaygermakher about sleep apnea.
Smoking has serious consequences to your overall health and your oral health! Smoking puts you at risk of bad breath, yellow teeth and gum disease. Ask your primary doctor for some smoking cessation tips or aids.
A well-balanced diet is important for maintaining a strong immune system and protecting your body from common oral disorders (including periodontal disease). The antioxidants found in fruits, vegetables, legumes and nuts help protect your body against bacteria and inflammation. Raw fruits and vegetables (e.g., carrots, apples) are also good for cleaning the plaque off your teeth and keeping your breath fresh.
Regular brushing and flossing are essential to protecting your teeth from plaque build-up and helping you maintain optimal oral health. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends you brush your teeth twice a day with a soft-bristled brush. Make sure to brush the outer surfaces, inner surfaces and chewing surfaces of all of your teeth. Brush your tongue, too. Replace your toothbrush every three to four months, and use an ADA-approved toothpaste with fluoride. Follow the ADA’s handy guide to brushing.
Flossing cleans areas where a toothbrush cannot reach. Floss at least once a day. If you have problems handling the slippery dental floss, explore your options with a wooden plaque remover, dental pick or pre-threaded flossing aid. Follow the ADA’s handy guide to flossing.
If you’ve noticed that your smile has lost its sparkling-white luster, try a teeth whitening treatment. Our cosmetic dentists will diagnose the source of your tooth discoloration (common culprits include the consumption of tea/coffee/wine, smoking and the effects of aging) and recommend the teeth whitening approach that will best meet your needs. If you find an over-the-counter bleaching product or device, check with our dentists before using it to make sure it won’t harm your gums or mouth.
Have you been postponing orthodontic treatment because you’re worried about the appearance of traditional metal brackets and wires? The Invisalign system uses clear, removable aligners that gently and gradually move your teeth into the correct alignment. Your Invisalign aligners will be custom-designed and crafted for your teeth.
For more ideas about how you can improve the health and beauty of your smile in 2014, please contact Lincoln Park Smiles by calling (312) 337-1665 or sending us an email.
Holidays just wouldn’t be the same without extravagant meals, cookie exchanges and champagne toasts. The end of the year is filled with merriment, but it’s also a prime time to become lax about dental health and hygiene. Stay vigilant about your dental care throughout the holiday season by following these tips from our Chicago cosmetic dentists, Drs. Jack Manikowski and Karina Zaygermakher.
Make sure you’re brushing twice a day to fight off decay and prevent gum disease. If you really want to embrace the holiday spirit, pick up a new cinnamon or peppermint-flavored toothpaste (with fluoride, of course!). Stay on top of your daily flossing, too. Here’s a bonus tip for gift-givers: new toothbrushes make excellent stocking stuffers!
Holiday feasts are laden with sweet and savory treats and temptations. Try to practice moderation and stay conscious of your indulgences so you don’t overdo it – too much sugar is bad for your teeth and your waistline. When you’re staring down the dessert tray, avoid chewy, sticky treats like caramels and candy canes; instead, enjoy sweets such as Christmas cookies, gingerbread men and chocolate kisses.
If you can, enjoy your sweets and treats right after a meal, instead of mindlessly snacking or grazing throughout the day. Also, brush your teeth after you finish. If you can’t get to a toothbrush right away, swish some water around, or chew a piece of sugar-free gum.
Schedule an appointment for a thorough professional exam and teeth cleaning in January to start 2014 off on the right foot, and plan out additional dental visits and treatment for the year. Our dentists will look for signs of inflammation or disease that could threaten the health of your smile, and immediately begin treating any areas of concern. They will also make recommendations tailored to your dental needs and goals (e.g., replace old silver fillings with tooth-colored fillings, explore Invisalign treatment options).
If you are unhappy with an aspect of your smile, give yourself a gift to remember for years to come: a smile makeover. Drs. Manikowski and Zaygermakher use leading-edge techniques to improve the overall balance and harmony of your smile. Depending on your unique needs, your smile makeover could include a combination of teeth whitening, dental bonding, porcelain veneers, dental implants, Invisalign and/or gum recontouring. An effective smile makeover blends artistry and science to produce beautiful, natural-looking results.
If you would like more recommendations for dental care during the holidays, or if you want to set up a smile makeover consultation, please contact Lincoln Park Smiles by calling (312) 337-1665 or sending us an email.
At Lincoln Park Smiles in Chicago we offer Same Day Smile treatments to patients who need to correct a damaged tooth or teeth and the best part is, we can do it in just one appointment! Our crown treatment will have you in and out of the office in no time allowing you to continue with your busy schedule without having to undergo several treatments to achieve that brilliant smile you may desire.
A crown is a type of dental restoration treatment which completely caps or encircles a tooth or dental implant. They are often needed when a large cavity threatens the ongoing health of a tooth, a tooth is damaged or decayed but may be used for any other oral health problem. During this procedure the damaged part of the tooth is removed and replaced with a permanent prosthetic cap. This technique strengthens and protects teeth from further damage, and can also improve the appearance of a discolored or misshapen teeth. Crowns can be used to:
Crowns are a restorative treatment that is natural looking, stain resistant, durable and will help you regain your smile and confidence. Someone’s smile is often one of the first things people notice on a person’s face, so if you are feeling uncomfortable or self-conscious about your smile let crown dentistry help you regain your confidence.
Here at Lincoln Park Smiles we use innovative technology to complete our treatments as quickly and efficiently as possible. We understand that our patients have busy schedules and time is always of the essence which is why we have adopted modern and innovative technology to help achieve the results you want in the time that works with you bets. Unlike traditional restorations that can take weeks and multiple appointments to complete, our CEREC technology allows our dental professionals to design, mill and install restorations in just one day. CEREC or Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics, is a dental restoration product that allows us to produce a ceramic dental restoration using a variety of computer assisted technologies, including 3D photography and CAD/CAM. This CEREC technology is what allows us to restore your teeth in a single sitting, rather than the multiple sittings required with earlier techniques.
Not only do our crowns treatments offer a quick fix to your dental needs but there are other benefits for using crown treatment as an idea solution for your dental health. Dental porcelain can be sculpted to closely replicate the look of natural tooth enamel, while providing desirable strength and resilience. Porcelain crowns are an excellent choice when recreating the form and function of a damaged tooth, this is because a crown essentially replaces the entire external portion of the tooth down to the gum level. Crowns are not limited to simply replacing the original tooth, but can be designed to create an even better esthetic appearance for patients. They are also an option for people who grind and clench their teeth so much that the original structure of their teeth has been compromised; through a combination of a dental implant treatment with a crown your damaged teeth can be restored.
Maintaining porcelain crowns is no trouble at all, it’s actually quite simple. Similar to your natural teeth, crowns require routine brushing with non-abrasive fluoride toothpaste along with regular flossing. A follow-up appointment will be scheduled with Dr. Jack and Dr. Karina to assess the crowns shortly after they’re placed, this way he can review the work and see how your mouth is reacting to the crowns. At this time your crown will more than likely feel comfortable in your mouth and the appointment may not seem necessary however, this follow-up appointment is an important part of your future oral health. Dr. Jack Manikowski will assess the rest of your mouth and determine how well your crown is fitting in with your oral environment. During this appointment we will also evaluate the rest of your mouth as a general checkup to determine your overall oral health.
Want a permanent solution to your missing or damaged tooth? Dental implants are the answer! They are titanium screws that act as a replacement for your natural tooth root. These devices are highly biocompatible with your natural jaw bone material, and form a permanently solid foundation for prosthetic tooth replacements. After we have completed our implant surgery we will cap the implant with a crown or bridge to restore your smile. At Lincoln Park Smiles we also offer cosmetic dentistry options such as teeth whitening, veneers, Invaslign, and smile make overs as treatment options to work towards a straight and brilliant smile. Depending on your current level of oral health Dr. Jack Manikowski will make an assessment and prescribe the most appropriate treatment for your dental needs.
Recent studies show that one third of Americans are unhappy with their smiles. Our Same Day Smile treatment will help you smile with confidence knowing that your crown fits in naturally with your other teeth. To achieve the smile you desire and in just one appointment our Same Day Smile treatment may be the solution for you. Dr. Jack and Dr. Karina will assess your mouth and look at the best treatment options for you to achieve the smile you want in the most effective and efficient way possible.
Failure to take appropriate action on a dental emergency issue can increase the risk of permanent damage to your teeth, bacterial infection in your gums, tooth loss and the necessity for extensive treatment in the future. At Lincoln Park Smiles in Chicago we are here for you in your time of need and in the case of dental emergencies we do the best we can to you as soon as possible to rectify the problem in your mouth.
Dental emergencies can result from a variety of things, however, if you are experiencing unusual pain or discomfort or a have faced an oral trauma we recommend you get in contact with us as soon as possible. Some other dental emergencies are as follows:
Whether you’re dental emergency has affected a cosmetic tooth or natural your natural teeth both can be detrimental if not treated and a simple call to our office can determine the severity.
Urgency is dependent upon the emergency however the sooner you can inform your dentist of your ailment or otherwise the better. If your tooth has been knocked out it is important to see a dentist within 30 minutes if applicable as this time is crucial. This can mean the difference between saving and losing your tooth! It is important to pick your tooth up by the crown (never the root) and gently rinse it with milk. The best solution would be to keep the lot tooth in the missing spot however if this is too painful or not possible we recommend placing it in milk. Milk is good for storing lost teeth because cells from the root surface don’t swell up and burst as they do when placed in water. It contains proteins which keep a constant acid to alkaline ratio, anti-bacterial substances as well as sugars to keep cells growing.
If you are experiencing dental pain, Lincoln Park Smiles offers 24 hour emergency dental service as we understand that even 30 minutes could mean the difference between your natural tooth and a prosthetic tooth.
Correct treatment will be determined dependent upon your particular emergency and after a full mouth assessment has been performed so that Dr. Jack Manikowski can resolve your emergency. At Lincoln Park Smiles we offer cosmetic and restorative dental treatments such as; crowns, implants, veneers and many more that may be used to treat your dental emergency. We understand that during dental emergency patients will experience some or a lot of oral pain which is why we ensure that all patients are approached with compassion, dignity and respect. We pride ourselves on informing our patients about their treatment options and their associated costs before commencing any treatment. And by providing virtually pain free treatments to increase patient comfort and overall outcomes.
General dental appointments should always be a part of you yearly calendar to ensure you are maintaining good oral health and to prevent any future emergencies. At Lincoln Park Smiles our general care is conducted in a caring, tender manner that allows any threats to your oral health to be tackled before they cause extensive damage and trauma to your oral and overall health. Regular maintenance of your smile can help avoid lengthy restorative treatment in the future. At Lincoln Park Smiles we believe that prevention is far better than a cure, which is why it is so important to visit our practice every six months for an oral health examination and a professional clean.
During your regular checkup we can determine your level of oral health and work to avoid dental emergencies while treating any problem areas and potential oral health threats. A common problem found during regular checkups is gum disease which if caught early can avoid lengthy procedures in the future. Did you know that gum disease can cause severe health risks such as:
To help keep your body healthy and your mouth healthy we recommend you keep on top of your oral health with regular checkups and preventive at-home methods. A healthy dental hygiene routine reaches beyond brushing and flossing every day. It is also important to consider the foods you consume and the beverages you drink. Beverages like tea, coffee, wine and soda all have negative effects on your teeth. The corrosive effects of wine, soda, coffee and tea can lead to cavities and weakened enamel.
At Lincoln Park Smiles in Chicago we understand the frustration and fear involved with dental emergencies and will work towards a fast and comforting solution as soon as possible to ensure your oral health is maintained. A dental emergency needs to be treated urgently and should not be left to worsen without medical help, we recommend patients call or contact us as soon as possible to evaluate the severity of the emergency and the best course of treatment for you. It is important to note that general checkups and preventive methods for your oral hygiene, while they do not guarantee that you will not develop future dental problems, they are habits that can help reduce the chance of gum disease and other common oral health problems that may lead to future dental emergencies.
Do you have a question about your dental health & care? Dr. Jack is here to help. Please click here to email us.