Dentist - Chicago
220-222 W. Huron, Suite 4002
Chicago, IL 60654
(312) 548-7579 (Office)
(312) 573-2032 (Fax)

Online Dental Education Library

Our team of dental specialists and staff strive to improve the overall health of our patients by focusing on preventing, diagnosing and treating conditions associated with your teeth and gums. Please use our dental library to learn more about dental problems and treatments available. If you have questions or need to schedule an appointment, contact us.

 

POST OP ORAL SURGERY INSTRUCTIONS

Things not to do:

1. Do not apply heat to the face at any time. This will increase swelling.

2. Avoid spitting, sucking (straws), and smoking for 48 hours. This creates a negative pressure in your mouth and tends to dislodge the blood clot. This leads to additional bleeding.

3. Avoid any sports or strenuous exercise for 24 hours. Physical activity causes the blood pressure to rise and may cause renewal of bleeding.

BLEEDING: It is normal for minor bleeding to occur for the first 24 hours following surgery. Place a piece of gauze over the surgery site and bite firmly on the gauze for at least 30 minutes. DO NOT chew on it. If the bleeding continues, call our office.

MOUTH RINSE: Do not rinse for 24 hours after surgery. Then, after meals, gently rinse with warm salt water - 1 tsp salt to 8 ounces water. This will speed healing by maintaining a clean wound. Tooth brushing is also recommended if you are careful to avoid the wound.

EATING: You should have liquids and very soft foods for the first 24-48 hours following the surgery. Be careful not to chew hard foods near the surgical area.

SWELLING: It is normal to experience some degree of swelling. You can place ice over your face for 20-30 minutes at a time during the first 24 hours to reduce pain and swelling.

MEDICATIONS: Take all medications as directed. This is essential. The medications are prescribed specifically to control pain and infection. You may switch to Advil or Tylenol for discomfort when you no longer need prescription strength medications. If pain persists, please contact our office.

 

FILLINGS:

1. Do not eat on your new filling for one hour and until your numbness is gone.

2. If you are supervising children who had fillings done, make sure they do not bite on their numb lips or tongue (it can cause serious injury to their soft tissue).

3. Do not bite hard or chew on silver amalgam fillings for 24 hours.

4. You may experience cold and heat sensitivity and some gum soreness; this usually subsides within a few days.

5. Call our office if you experience pain or discomfort for more than a few days after the fillings, or if you have any questions.

 

CROWNS AND BRIDGES (also INLAYS and ONLAY):

1. Crowns and bridges usually take 2 or 3 appointments to complete. On the first appointment, the tooth/teeth are prepared, impressions are taken, and a temporary crown is placed on your tooth/teeth.

2. You may experience sensitivity, gum soreness, and slight discomfort on the tooth/teeth; it should subside after the placement of the permanent crown(s).

3. Whenever anesthesia is used, avoid chewing on your teeth until the numbness has worn off.

4. A temporary crown is usually made of plastic-based material or soft metal. It can break if too much pressure is placed on it. The crown may also come off; if it does, save the crown and call our office. The temporary crown is placed to protect the tooth and prevent other teeth from moving. If it comes off it should be replaced as soon as possible. To avoid losing your temporary, do not chew on sticky or hard food (chewing gum, ice). Try to chew on the opposite side of the temporary as much as possible.

5. Continue your normal brushing but be careful while flossing around the temporaries (remove the floss gently from the side). If it is difficult to get the floss between the temporary and surrounding teeth, refrain from flossing until you receive your permanent crown.

6. After the permanent restoration is placed you may feel slight pressure for a few days. Also, the bite may feel different for a day or two. But if after 2-3 days the bite still feels uneven or if you feel discomfort when chewing on the tooth, call our office. Delaying the necessary adjustments may damage the tooth permanently.

7. Call our office if you are in pain or if you have any questions.

 

ROOT CANAL TREATMENT:

1. You may experience moderate pain and sensitivity to pressure on your tooth. Also, you may feel gum soreness for few days after your treatment. The healing process may take several days but the pain and discomfort should subside gradually.

2. Take any medication that was prescribed for you according to instructions.

3. Usually a temporary filling has been placed on your tooth; do not bite on the tooth for one hour and while you are numb. Also, until the permanent restoration is placed, be very gentle with the tooth. Try to chew with the opposite side.

4. Continue your brushing and flossing.

5. Follow up with the placement of your permanent restoration as you have been advised. Any unnecessary delay in placement of final restoration may damage the tooth permanently.

6. Call our office if you are in severe pain or experience swelling, or if you have any questions.

 

TEETH CLEANING (DEEP CLEANING/SCALING AND ROOT PLANING):

1. You may experience some cold and heat sensitivity (especially after deep cleaning).

2. If you have received anesthesia do not eat anything until the numbness has worn off.

3. Continue your regular brushing and flossing.

4. Some bleeding for a day or two after cleaning is normal, but if you experience any excessive bleeding call our office.

5. Call our office if you are in pain or if you have any questions

 

DENTURE DELIVERY:

1. You will experience some discomfort with any new denture for a few days. All new dentures need several adjustments to completely and comfortably fit your mouth.

2. You should take the dentures out every night and keep them in a clean container filled with water or denture cleaning solution. Your gums need to rest and be without the dentures every day for a period of time.

3. Clean dentures thoroughly with a brush and water before putting them back in your mouth.

4. It may be difficult to talk normally with the new dentures for a few days. One way to practice is to read a book or newspaper out loud for a period of time everyday. Your tongue and muscles will get used to the new dentures and you will talk normally very soon.

5. Call our office if you are experiencing pain, discomfort, or if you have any questions.

Thank you.

 

An estimated sixty-five percent of Americans have bad breath. Over forty-million Americans have "chronic halitosis," which is persistent bad breath. Ninety percent of all halitosis is of oral, not systemic, origin.

Americans spend more than $1 billion a year on over the counter halitosis products, many of which are ineffective because they only mask the problem.

What causes bad breath?

Bad breath is caused by a variety of factors. In most cases, it is caused by food remaining in the mouth - on the teeth, tongue, gums, and other structures, collecting bacteria. Dead and dying bacterial cells release a sulfur compound that gives your breath an unpleasant odor. Certain foods, such as garlic and onions, contribute to breath odor. Once the food is absorbed into the bloodstream, it is transferred to the lungs, where it is exhaled. Brushing, flossing and mouthwash only mask the odor. Dieters sometimes develop unpleasant breath from fasting.

Periodontal (gum) disease often causes persistent bad breath or a bad taste in the mouth, and persistent bad breath may mean a sign that you have gum disease.

Gum disease is caused by plaque - the sticky, often colorless, film of bacteria that constantly forms on teeth. Dry mouth or xerostomia may also cause bad breath due to decreased salivary flow. Saliva cleans your mouth and removes particles that may cause odor. Tobacco products cause bad breath, stain teeth, reduce your ability to taste foods and irritate your gum tissues. Bad breath may also be a sign that you have a serious health problem, such as a respiratory tract infection, chronic sinusitis, postnasal drip, chronic bronchitis, diabetes, gastrointestinal disturbance, liver or kidney ailment.

Here are characteristic bad breath odors associated with some of these illnesses:

  • Diabetes - acetone, fruity

  • Liver failure - sweetish, musty

  • Acute rheumatic fever - acid, sweet

  • Lung abscess - foul, putrefactive

  • Blood dyscrasias - resembling decomposed blood

  • Liver cirrhosis - resembling decayed blood

  • Uremia - ammonia or urine

  • Hand-Schuller-Christian disease - fetid breath and unpleasant taste

  • Scurvy - foul breath from stomach inflammation

  • Wegner`s granulomatosis - Necrotic, putrefactive

  • Kidney failure - ammonia or urine

  • Diphtheria, dysentery, measles, pneumonia, scarlet fever, tuberculosis - extremely foul, fetid odor

  • Syphilis - fetid

Bad breath may also be caused by medications you are taking, including central nervous system agents, anti-Parkinson drugs, antihistamines/decongestants, anti-psychotics, anti-cholinergics, narcotics, anti-hypertensives, and anti-depressants.

Caring for bad breath

Daily brushing and flossing, and regular professional cleanings, will normally take care of unpleasant breath. And don't forget your often overlooked tongue as a culprit for bad breath. Bacterial plaque and food debris also can accumulate on the back of the tongue. The tongue's surface is extremely rough and bacteria can accumulate easily in the cracks and crevices.

Controlling periodontal disease and maintaining good oral health helps to reduce bad breath.  If you have constant bad breath, make a list of the foods you eat and any medications you take. Some medications may contribute to bad breath.

Improperly cleaned dentures can also harbor odor-causing bacteria and food particles. If you wear removable dentures, take them out at night and clean them thoroughly before replacing them.

If your dentist determines that your mouth is healthy and that the odor is not oral in nature, you may be referred to your family physician or to a specialist to determine the cause of the odor and possible treatment. If the odor is due to gum disease, your dentist can either treat the disease or refer you to a periodontist, a specialist in treating gum tissues. Gum disease can cause gum tissues to pull away from the teeth and form pockets. When these pockets are deep, only a professional periodontal cleaning can remove the bacteria and plaque that accumulate.

Mouthwashes are generally ineffective on bad breath. If your bad breath persists even after good oral hygiene, there are special products your dentist may prescribe, including Zytex, which is a combination of zinc chloride, thymol and eucalyptus oil that neutralizes the sulfur compounds and kills the bacteria that causes them. In addition, a special antimicrobial mouth rinse may be prescribed. An example is chlorhexidine, but be careful not to use it for more than a few months as it can stain your teeth. Some antiseptic mouth rinses have been accepted by the American Dental Association for their breath freshening properties and therapeutic benefits in reducing plaque and gingivitis. Instead of simply masking breath odor, these products have been demonstrated to kill the germs that cause bad breath. Ask your dentist about trying some of these products.