General Dentistry In Elmhurst, IL

General Dentistry

General dentistry in Elmhurst, IL encompasses many dental services to maintain oral health and prevent dental problems. It includes routine examinations, cleanings, fillings, root canals, extractions, and other basic dental procedures. The primary benefits of general dentistry lie in its preventive nature, as regular check-ups can detect issues early, preventing them from escalating into more severe problems. Additionally, general dentistry helps maintain oral hygiene, preserve natural teeth, and promote overall well-being by promptly addressing dental issues. By focusing on preventive care and early intervention, general dentistry contributes to long-term oral health and reduces the need for extensive dental treatments in the future.

The Benefits of General Dentistry in Elmhurst, IL

  • Routine dental check-ups help detect oral health issues early, preventing the need for more extensive treatments later on.
  • Professional cleanings remove plaque and tartar buildup, reducing the risk of cavities, gum disease, and bad breath.
  • Dental exams include screenings for oral cancer, allowing for early detection and prompt treatment if necessary.
  • General dentistry promotes good oral hygiene habits and educates patients on proper brushing, flossing, and dietary choices for optimal oral health.
  • Treatments such as fillings, crowns, and root canals restore damaged teeth, preserving their function and appearance.
  • Emergency dental care is available for urgent issues such as toothaches, broken teeth, or lost fillings, providing prompt relief and preventing further complications.

Dental Cleanings And Exams in Elmhurst, IL

Dental cleanings and exams are essential components of preventive dental care aimed at maintaining optimal oral health. Cleanings, also known as Dental Prophylaxis, involve the removal of plaque and tartar buildup from the teeth and along the gumline. Plaque is a sticky film of bacteria that forms on the teeth, and if not removed regularly, it can harden into tartar, leading to gum disease and tooth decay. During a cleaning, your dentist in Elmhurst, IL has his dental hygienist use specialized instruments to remove plaque and tartar carefully, then polish the teeth to remove surface stains and create a smooth surface that makes it more difficult for plaque to accumulate.

In addition to cleanings, dental exams play a crucial role in identifying and addressing potential oral health issues. During a dental exam, the dentist in Elmhurst, IL thoroughly examines the teeth, gums, and surrounding oral tissues, looking for signs of decay, gum disease, oral cancer, and other abnormalities. X-rays may also detect hidden dental problems, such as cavities between teeth or issues below the gumline. Early detection of dental problems allows for prompt intervention and treatment, preventing them from progressing into more severe problems that may require extensive dental work.

Regular dental cleanings and exams are recommended every six months for most individuals, although the frequency may vary depending on your oral health needs. These routine appointments help prevent dental problems and provide an opportunity for education and guidance on proper oral hygiene practices. By incorporating dental cleanings and exams into their oral care routine, Dr. Gotsch and his team can help you maintain healthy teeth and gums, prevent dental issues, and enjoy a lifetime of optimal oral health. Contact us today!

Dental Fillings in Elmhurst, IL

Dental fillings are used to repair teeth damaged by decay or cavities. When bacteria in the mouth produce acids that erode tooth enamel, they form cavities, holes, or pits in the teeth. Fillings are designed to restore the affected teeth' structure, function, and appearance.

Dr. Gotsch uses tooth-colored filling material, often called “bonding”. He hasn’t used silver fillings, called amalgams, since he was required to do so in dental school. Additionally, porcelain or ceramic fillings can be used for larger cavities or teeth requiring additional strength and support.

Regardless of the filling, the goal is to restore the tooth's strength and integrity, preventing further decay or damage. After the filling is placed, the dentist shapes and polishes it to ensure a comfortable fit and natural appearance. Dental fillings can last many years with proper care and maintenance, helping individuals maintain their oral health and function. Regular dental check-ups are essential for monitoring the condition of fillings and addressing any issues that may arise over time.

Night Guards in Elmhurst, IL

Night Guards are custom-made dental appliances designed to protect teeth and alleviate symptoms of bruxism, a condition characterized by clenching or grinding the teeth during sleep. These guards are made from hard acrylic material and are worn over the teeth when you sleep. By creating a barrier between the upper and lower teeth, night guards help to prevent wear and tear on the tooth surfaces, reduce muscle tension in the jaw, and minimize the risk of jaw pain, headaches, and other related symptoms.

Obtaining a dental night guard usually begins with a consultation with a dentist, who will assess your symptoms and dental health. If bruxism/grinding is suspected or diagnosed, impressions of your teeth are taken to create a custom-fit night guard. The guard is then fabricated in a dental laboratory according to the specifications provided by the dentist. Once the night guard is ready, you will return to the dentist for a fitting, during which any necessary adjustments are made to ensure a comfortable and secure fit.

Regular use of a dental night guard can provide significant relief for individuals suffering from bruxism, helping to protect their teeth from damage and alleviate associated symptoms. Dr. Gotsch and his Team give patients recommendations for care and maintenance, which may include cleaning the night guard daily with a soft toothbrush and mild soap, storing it in a clean, dry container when not in use, and scheduling periodic check-ups to ensure proper fit and functionality. A dental night guard can effectively manage bruxism and promote oral health with proper care and usage.

Oral Cancer Screenings in Elmhurst, IL

Oral cancer screenings are essential to routine dental examinations to detect signs of oral cancer or early precancerous conditions. Oral cancer can affect the lips, tongue, gums, inner lining of the cheeks, roof or floor of the mouth, and throat. These screenings involve a thorough oral cavity examination, including visual inspection and sometimes palpation of the tissues for abnormalities, such as unusual sores, lumps, or discolorations.

During an oral cancer screening, the dentist at Elmhurst Smiles will look for any suspicious lesions, changes in tissue texture, or areas of discoloration that could indicate the presence of abnormal cells. Further diagnostic tests, such as a biopsy, may be recommended to confirm the presence of cancerous or precancerous cells if abnormalities are detected. Early detection of oral cancer is crucial for successful treatment outcomes, as it allows for prompt intervention and management of the disease.

In addition to regular dental check-ups, individuals can monitor their oral health at home by performing monthly self-examinations. This involves checking the mouth and throat for any changes in appearance or sensation, such as persistent sores, lumps, or difficulty swallowing. Any suspicious symptoms should be reported to a dentist or healthcare professional for further evaluation. By staying vigilant about oral health and seeking timely screenings and evaluations, individuals can help reduce their risk of developing advanced oral cancer and improve their chances of successful treatment and recovery.

Preventative Dentistry in Elmhurst, IL

Preventative dentistry is a proactive approach to oral health that focuses on preventing dental problems before they occur rather than treating them after they develop. It encompasses a range of practices and procedures to maintain the health of teeth, gums, and mouth. One of the critical aspects of preventative dentistry is regular dental check-ups and cleanings. These appointments allow dentists like Dr. Gotsch to detect potential issues early on, such as cavities, gum disease, or oral cancer, and address them before they become more serious.

Another essential component of preventative dentistry is oral hygiene practices at home, such as brushing teeth twice daily with fluoride toothpaste, flossing daily, and using mouthwash. These habits help remove plaque and bacteria from the teeth and gums, reducing the risk of cavities, gum disease, and other oral health problems. Additionally, a balanced diet low in sugar and high in nutritious foods can help support good oral health by providing essential nutrients for teeth and gums.

And speaking of fluoridated toothpaste, make sure you wait until your child is three years old to use fluoridated toothpaste (and only a pea-sized amount!). Children younger than three have a tendency to swallow toothpaste, especially if it’s a tasty flavor.

Preventative dentistry also includes protective measures such as dental sealants and fluoride treatments. Dental sealants are thin, plastic coatings applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth to prevent decay in the hard-to-reach grooves and pits. Fluoride treatments, either applied topically by a dentist or consumed through fluoridated water or supplements, help strengthen tooth enamel and make it more resistant to decay. By incorporating these preventative measures into a comprehensive oral care routine, individuals can maintain optimal oral health and reduce the need for more invasive dental treatments in the future. Contact us today!

Root Canals in Elmhurst, IL

Root canal treatment is a dental procedure to save an infected or severely decayed tooth. The process involves removing the infected or damaged pulp from inside the tooth, cleaning and disinfecting the root canals, and then filling and sealing the space to prevent further infection. Root canals are typically necessary when the pulp, which contains nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue, becomes inflamed or infected due to deep decay, a cracked or broken tooth, or repeated dental procedures.

During a root canal procedure in Elmhurst, IL, the dentist first numbs the tooth and surrounding area with local anesthesia to ensure your comfort. Then he will open the tooth's crown to access the pulp chamber and root canals. Using small instruments, the dentist carefully removes the infected or damaged pulp tissue and cleans the inside of the tooth to remove debris or bacteria. Once the tooth is thoroughly cleaned and disinfected, the root canals are filled with a biocompatible material, such as gutta-percha, and sealed with dental cement to prevent bacteria from re-entering.

After a root canal, the tooth may be restored with a porcelain crown to provide strength and protection, especially if a significant portion of the tooth's structure has been lost due to decay or damage. With proper care, including good oral hygiene practices and regular dental check-ups, a tooth that has undergone a root canal can often function normally for many years. Root canal treatment saves teeth from extraction and alleviates the pain and discomfort associated with dental infections, allowing patients to maintain their natural smiles and oral function.

Sealants in Elmhurst, IL

Dental sealants are thin, plastic coatings applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth (molars and premolars) to protect them from decay. Dr. Gotsch uses sealants that are BPA-free. These areas are particularly susceptible to cavities because their uneven surfaces can trap food particles and bacteria, making them difficult to clean with regular brushing and flossing. Sealants act as a barrier, sealing off the deep grooves and pits of the teeth and creating a smooth surface that is easier to clean. By effectively blocking out bacteria and food particles, sealants help prevent the formation of cavities and reduce the risk of tooth decay in these vulnerable areas.

The process of applying dental sealants is quick, painless, and non-invasive. Once applied, sealants can last several years with proper care and maintenance. However, they may need to be checked periodically by a dentist and reapplied as necessary to ensure continued protection against cavities.

Sealants are especially beneficial for children and teenagers who may be more prone to cavities due to their developing oral hygiene habits and dietary choices. However, adults can also benefit from sealants, especially if deep grooves or pits in their teeth are difficult to clean effectively. By providing an additional layer of protection against tooth decay, sealants help promote long-term oral health and reduce the need for costly and invasive dental treatments in the future.

Sleep Apnea in Elmhurst, IL

Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder characterized by pauses in breathing or shallow breaths during sleep. These pauses can last from a few seconds to minutes and occur multiple times throughout the night, disrupting the normal sleep cycle. The two main types of sleep apnea are obstructive sleep apnea and central sleep apnea. OSA is the most common type and occurs when the muscles in the throat relax excessively during sleep, causing the airway to become partially or entirely blocked. CSA, on the other hand, occurs when the brain fails to send the proper signals to the muscles that control breathing.

Common sleep apnea symptoms may include loud snoring, gasping or choking sensations during sleep, excessive daytime sleepiness, morning headaches, irritability, and difficulty concentrating. Untreated sleep apnea can lead to serious health complications such as high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and depression. Diagnosis typically involves a sleep study, where your sleep patterns, breathing, and other physiological functions are monitored overnight in a specialized sleep center or using portable home sleep testing devices.

Treatment for sleep apnea depends on the severity and type of the condition. Lifestyle changes such as weight loss, quitting smoking, avoiding alcohol and sedatives before bedtime, and sleeping on one's side instead of the back may help alleviate symptoms in mild cases. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy is the most common treatment for moderate to severe OSA, which involves wearing a mask that delivers a continuous flow of air to keep the airway open during sleep. These devices are considered the gold-standard of treatment by MDs. However, some people are unable to wear them comfortably and they just can’t achieve restful sleep.

Fortunately, other treatment options are available through your Elmhurst dentist. Dr. Gotsch has taken advanced courses in sleep study appliances. These oral appliances help reposition your jaw and tongue to keep your airway open. More advanced options include surgery to remove excess tissue blocking the airway, or implantable devices that stimulate the airway muscles to prevent collapse.

Managing sleep apnea effectively is crucial for improving sleep quality, reducing daytime fatigue, and lowering the risk of associated health problems. Dr. Gotsch has helped many of his patients improve their quality of life and will work with your physician if he/she advocates an oral sleep apnea appliance.

Teeth Whitening in Elmhurst, IL

Teeth whitening, also known as dental bleaching, is a cosmetic dental procedure aimed at lightening the color of the teeth and removing stains or discoloration. Over time, factors such as aging, consumption of certain foods and beverages (such as coffee, tea, and red wine), tobacco use, and poor oral hygiene can cause the teeth to become discolored or stained. Teeth whitening treatments at your Elmhurst dentist use medically safe bleaching agents, carbamide peroxide, to break down stains and lighten the color of the teeth.

There are two main types of teeth whitening procedures: in-office and at-home whitening. Some dental offices offer in-office whitening, which involves the application of a high-concentration bleaching gel to the teeth, which is then activated using a special light or laser. This method can produce dramatic results in a single visit; however, Dr. Gotsch has found that it leads to profound tooth sensitivity for many patients. Thus, he advocates an at-home whitening kit. These kits allow you to whiten your teeth at your convenience. We will make custom-fitted trays and give you instructions on how to use concentrated bleaching gel to get a whiter, brighter smile.

Teeth whitening is generally safe and effective when performed under the supervision of a dentist. However, it may not be suitable for everyone, particularly individuals with tooth sensitivity, gum disease, or certain dental restorations such as crowns or veneers. Additionally, teeth whitening is not a permanent solution, and results will fade over time, especially with continued exposure to staining agents. To maintain teeth whitening results, it is essential to practice good oral hygiene, avoid staining foods and beverages, and undergo periodic touch-up treatments as needed. Overall, teeth whitening can help improve the appearance of the smile and boost self-confidence, leading to a brighter, more radiant smile.

TMJ Treatment in Elmhurst, IL

TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint) treatment involves a comprehensive approach aimed at alleviating pain, improving jaw function, and addressing underlying causes contributing to the disorder. Initially, conservative treatments are often recommended. These may include lifestyle modifications such as avoiding hard or chewy foods, practicing stress management techniques to reduce jaw clenching, and applying moist heat or cold packs to alleviate muscle tension and inflammation. Additionally, jaw exercises and physical therapy can help strengthen the muscles around the jaw joint and improve its range of motion.

Another common approach to TMJ treatment involves using oral appliances, such as splints or mouthguards. These devices are custom-made to fit over the teeth and help stabilize the jaw joint, preventing teeth grinding or clenching, which can exacerbate TMJ symptoms. Your Elmhurst dentist makes custom-fitted oral appliances that can help to redistribute pressure on the jaw joint, alleviate pain, and promote healing. In some cases, medications such as muscle relaxants, pain relievers, or anti-inflammatories may be prescribed to manage pain and reduce inflammation associated with TMJ disorder.

For individuals with severe or persistent TMJ symptoms that do not respond to conservative treatments, more invasive interventions may be considered. Overall, the choice of TMJ treatment depends on the severity of symptoms, underlying causes, individual patient preferences, and improving jaw function and quality of life. Dr. Gotsch does NOT advocate over-the-counter night guards since they often exacerbate or increase jaw pain.

General dentistry is the foundation of good oral health, providing essential preventive, diagnostic, and treatment services to help you maintain a healthy smile for life. Visit Elmhurst Smiles at 127 E. Vallette St., Elmhurst, IL 60126, or call (630) 834-8055 to experience general dentistry's comprehensive care and benefits.

Contact Us Today

Our Office

Elmhurst Smiles

127 E Vallette St.,
Elmhurst, IL 60126

(630) 834-8055

Office Hours

  • Monday:   8:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Tuesday:   11:30 am - 7:00 pm
  • Wednesday:   8:00 am - 1:00 pm
  • Thursday:   8:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Friday:   7:00 am - 11:00 am
  • Saturday:   8:00 am - 1:00 pm
  • Sunday:   Closed