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​7 Unique Things to do in Chicago this Winter

chicago winterWinters in Chicago bring forth endless opportunities for fun and entertainment. Just because it’s cold outside is no excuse to stay home every night for the next 2-3 months. We’ve compiled a list of our top 7 unique things to do in Chicago this winter time.

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​Benefits of an Electric Toothbrush vs. Traditional Toothbrush

electric vs traditional toothbrusRegularly brushing and flossing your teeth are essential for good dental health. Your teeth stay white, your breath smells great, and most importantly it helps prevent any major dental issues down the road.

When it comes to brushing your teeth, you have two options: regular or electric toothbrush. If you visit the website of any electric toothbrush manufacturer, they claim that the electric toothbrush is superior in many departments. Take what you read with a grain of salt because they’re obviously trying to sell their own product.

We’re going to look at the pros and cons of both electric and traditional toothbrushes and come to a conclusion as to which one is superior.

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Using Botox in Dental Procedures

dental botoxWater Tower Dental Care is pleased to announce that we’re offering Botox solutions to help with certain dental issues.

You read that right: Botox for dental issues.

For many years, people have associated Botox with plastic surgeons and the removal of wrinkles and fine lines from the face. What many people don’t know is that Botox has been medically approved for many different therapeutic uses, including dentistry.

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​Dental Implants vs Dentures

dentures vs dental implantsThe American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) reports that 69% of adults from age 35-44 have lost at least one tooth due to decay, bad root canal, gum disease or accident. This accounts for the annual 100k-300k dental implant procedures performed every year.

With so many Americans missing at least one permanent tooth in their mouth, it’s no wonder that many people are interested in getting an implant. The problem with implants is that not everyone can afford them, so they sometimes turn to the next best thing: dentures.

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​Safe Foods to Eat After Having Your Wisdom Teeth Removed

wisdom teeth foodsWisdom teeth are a set of molars in the very back of the mouth. They usually come in your late teens or early 20’s. For a lucky few people, their wisdom teeth are properly aligned and healthy. For the rest of us, our wisdom teeth come in misaligned and in some cases – growing in sideways deep beneath the gum line.

Misaligned wisdom teeth usually come in at an angle to the jaw. They can crowd other teeth and cause issues with nerves or the jawbone. In some cases, they can be impacted – meaning that 90% of the tooth is below the gum line and only a small top portion is visible. In others, the wisdom teeth can come in at a horizontal angle and start pushing against other teeth.

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Invisalign vs. Traditional Braces​

invisalign vs traditional bracesWhen your dentist informs you that you might benefit from an orthodontic treatment, a whole host of questions can arise. What are my options? What is the cost? What will be the most effective?

When it comes time to choose a method to straighten teeth, most people have to choose from Invisalign and traditional braces. Both have their pros and cons. They also are two very different methods which can produce the desired straight teeth that you’re looking for.

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​7 Fun Things to do in Chicago This Fall

chicago fall events 2017It’s that time of the year again.

Leaves are starting to change color, the weather is starting to cool, and an unmistakable crisp can be felt in the air.

Fall has arrived in Chicago and that signals the start of a wide variety of outdoor festivals and other fun things to do before Old Man Winter casts his freezing spell over our city. There is no better city in the world to celebrate fall time than Chicago. Pound for pound, we have more fun things to do than anywhere else.

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​How Often Should You Change Your Toothbrush?

toothbrushIf you’re like most people, your parents and your dentist have repeatedly told you that you need to change your toothbrush every so often. The keyword being “every so often” is somewhat vague and subjective. We’re going to look at exactly what kind of toothbrush you should buy as well as clear up any misconceptions regarding the timeline to change your toothbrush.

Soft, Medium, or Hard?

If you’ve walked down the oral care aisle of your local drugstore lately, you’ve seen the wide variety of toothbrushes on the market. From ones with a conventional head (that’s shaped like a rectangle with rounded corners) to ones with a diamond head, it’s sometimes confusing to know which toothbrush to buy.

Generally speaking, the one with a diamond shaped head can get into hard-to-reach places inside your mouth. Some newer brushes will come with bristles of varying sizes and shapes. Their purpose is to give the brush a more effective clean and by varying the size and shape of the bristles, you can cover more surface area of your teeth. This will enable a more effective clean when you brush your teeth.

Then you have the hardness of the bristles: soft, medium, hard. The majority of dentists recommend you use a soft-bristled brush if you have sensitive teeth and gums. If there is a significant buildup of plaque, you may want to consider a medium brush for a more effective cleaning.

There’s really no good reason for selecting a toothbrush with hard bristles. While some people claim to prefer hard bristles, they can cause more harm than good by removing tooth enamel due to improper brushing. Several scientific studies have been performed on the damage that improper brushing of one’s teeth can cause.

Physical Damage

If your toothbrush has frayed or splayed bristles, it’s long overdue for a change. Damaged bristles can do more harm than good. Considering toothbrushes are relatively inexpensive, you should run out and buy a new one if you notice any physical damage to it.

The same goes for the heads of electric toothbrushes. The instructions of the manufacturer will give you a “change date”. It’s best to follow their recommended suggestions. Don’t try to stretch it out, thinking you’re going to save a buck or two.

Germs and the Toilet

When you flush your toilet, the swirling vortex of water shoots microscopic water droplets as high as 10” into the air. These droplets of water can contain viruses such as E. coli and Staph. They can stay airborne for up to 30 minutes, and some of them can even find their way onto your toothbrush.

If you can help it, move your toothbrush holder to the far side of your bathroom counter (away from the toilet) and your sink. When you wash your hands, microscopic germs can go airborne and land on your toothbrush.

There are relatively inexpensive toothbrush holders on the market that have a top or cap. They will prevent airborne germs from the toilet getting onto your toothbrush.

If you drop your toothbrush on the floor, there is no such thing as a “5 second rule”. Bacteria and viruses that are tracked in by your shoes have their suitcases in hand and when a toothbrush hits the floor, they hop on board for a quick ride into your mouth.

When you flush your toilet, do it with the lid down. It will contain the microscopic spray that occurs with every flush.

Preventative Maintenance

Every so often, take your toothbrush and dip it into a cup of hydrogen peroxide or mouthwash (the ones with anti-bacterial agents). If you accidentally drop your toothbrush on the ground, a 30 second or so rinse in a cup of hydrogen peroxide should sterilize it enough.

Some people go as far as putting their toothbrush in the dishwasher on occasion. If this seems like something you’d like to try, try putting it on the top rack of the dishwasher just to be safe. The “heat” cycle gets extremely hot and is enough to kill the germs.

Try not to store your toothbrush in an air-tight container. This could cause the brush to dry out and ideal conditions for mold to form.

Sick or Not Feeling Well?

If a loved one is sick or not feeling well, make sure that the toothbrush heads are not touching each other when you store them. That’s the quickest way to get whatever bug they have. If you yourself aren’t feeling too good, make sure to change your toothbrush when you start feeling better. The germs you had prior will be all over your toothbrush and could cause a 2nd round of not feeling well to occur.

Summary

Dentists suggest that you change your toothbrush every 3-4 months. If damage occurs or if it falls on the floor, change it immediately. By keeping in mind these simple preventative maintenance tips, you will keep your mouth germ free and your toothbrush in proper working condition.

Dentists also suggest you have a professional teeth cleaning performed at least once a year. All the brushing in the world can’t make up for a proper dental cleaning, as dentists have specialized tools that get in the nooks and crannies a toothbrush can’t.

At Water Tower Dental Care, we specialize in helping our patients look and feel their best. Give us a call at (312) 787-2131 to schedule an appointment to get your teeth cleaned. You’ll walk out of our offices with a squeaky clean look and feel to your mouth.

​Dental Anesthesia – Making You More Comfortable at the Dentist

dental anesthesiaYour mouth contains thousands of nerve endings which makes it sensitive to pain. If you ever have had a toothache, you know how excruciating it can get. This is why dentists like to numb the part of your mouth they’re about to work on. Numbing agents prevent the nerve endings from sending pain signals to the brain. Done properly and you won’t feel a thing while getting a root canal, extraction or other dental work.

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​Dental Bridge vs. Dental Implant

dental bridge vs implantDentistry has come a long way over the past 50 years. A set of removable dentures used to be the only option for replacing missing teeth. They looked fake and you had to take them out of your mouth when eating certain foods. Both dentists and denture recipients were not happy with the end results.

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