Old Dental Restorations Can Lead to Other Problems

Old dental restorations don’t just look bad. According to Dr. Ivan Smiles, old dental restorations can lead to tooth decay and gum disease.

How Do Old Restorations Cause Gum Disease and Tooth Decay

Cracked or chipped fillings allow food particles to work their way under the filling. If you have old silver amalgam fillings, chances are you have cavities under the restoration. Unfortunately, it is impossible to know unless you experience pain, which not everyone does.

If you have bridgework or wear dentures, it is imperative that you pay close attention to oral hygiene. Brush twice, floss once a day to keep your mouth clean, and don’t forget to schedule an appointment with Dr. Ivan Smiles for a complete checkup. You may think your 15-year-old bridge is still doing its job, but if your partner is complaining about your chronic bad breath, it’s time for a dental restoration checkup.

The Advantage of New Dental Restorations

During your comprehensive dental examination, Dr. Ivan will check your teeth and gums paying close attention to your fillings, dental crowns, inlays, onlays, dental bonding, porcelain veneers, and dental implants. If there is damage, Dr. Valcarenghi will recommend new restorations with modern materials that last much longer than dental restorations made a decade or two ago.

These days you have more choices when it comes to dental restorations. Silver amalgam is being replaced with tooth colored dental resin and composites that are just as strong as old school dental fillings.

Your Overall Health

According to the American Dental Association, there is a connection between oral and overall health. Scientists believe it has to do with bacteria entering the bloodstream. This occurs if you have cracked or chipped teeth or gum disease.

If you haven’t had your dental restorations checked in some time, call or click and schedule an appointment with Dr. Ivan Smiles today.

Invisible Braces Have the Advantage over Conventional Wires and Brackets

Invisible braces aren’t for everyone. However, if you have always wanted straight teeth but remember what your brother went through with old school wires and brackets, Invisalign® Elmhurst with Dr. Ivan Valcarenghi could be the answer.

Conventional braces have changed over the years with orthodontists using clear brackets and ceramic wires. While conventional braces may look better, you will still have to deal with the problems that come with standard wires and brackets.

The Problem with Braces

Tooth Decay-Oral hygiene is extremely important when it comes to wires and brackets. It is impossible to clean under the wires and brackets making tooth decay a real issue. People who wear braces must brush and floss after meals as food can easily be trapped around your oral appliances.

Demineralization-Demineralization occurs when the food left on your teeth mixes with bacteria. This creates acid that will rob your teeth of phosphate and calcium. This causes white patches on your teeth. The decalcification looks like white scars that outline the place where your brackets were. The white spots can also cause sensitivity.

Gingivitis-A form of gum disease, gingivitis will cause red, tender, and bleeding gums. While gingivitis is curable, you do not want to ignore it, as it will develop into periodontal disease. If you have severe gum disease or other issues, your dentist or orthodontist may need to take your braces off. Once your gums have healed, the braces can be reapplied. This will impede your treatment length.

Comfort-Wires and brackets need to be pushed and pulled into place while invisible braces gently push the teeth into position. You also don’t need to worry about broken wires that can puncture your cheeks or tongue.

Other problems that can occur with braces include:

• Sensitivity
• Excessive plaque
• Tartar
• Bad breath

Invisalign® Invisible Braces

Invisible braces are comfortable and less time consuming. On average, most patients will wear between 11 and 31 sets of clear braces for between 12 and 18 months. The only time you will need to remove your aligners is when you eat, brush, and floss. This eliminates the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.

With Invisalign® you will not need to visit the dentist every two weeks for adjustments as you will see Dr. Ivan every six weeks to make sure your invisible braces are straightening your smile according to your treatment plan.

For more information regarding Invisalign or any other cosmetic dental procedure, call or click and schedule an appointment with Dr. Ivan Valcarenghi today. 

Porcelain Veneers and Cosmetic Dental Bonding What’s the Difference?

If you follow my dental blog, you will have learned how important a Hollywood Smile is regardless of your occupation. From dental bonding to porcelain veneers, I help transform unhappy grins into beautiful Hollywood Smiles. However, there is a difference between the two.

What are Porcelain Veneers?

Porcelain veneers are thin sheets of dental porcelain that I use to bond directly to the fronts of your teeth. My preferred method of cosmetic dentistry, porcelain veneers can last for years as long as you practice good oral hygiene. You must brush twice and floss once a day.

Make sure you eat a teeth healthy diet and never chew on ice cubes. Porcelain veneers are the permanent solution to chipped, cracked, crooked, tipped, or rotated teeth. Porcelain veneers can take your less than appealing smile and turn it into a head-turning grin that will win job promotions and proposals.

The Porcelain Veneers Process

The porcelain veneers process requires three dental visits. The first being your consultation. During your consultation, you and I will determine if porcelain veneers are a good fit for your new Hollywood Smile.

If deemed appropriate, I will remove a portion of the enamel on your teeth during your second dental visit. This assures a natural look. Once removed, I will make an impression that will be sent to a lab for veneer manufacture. If your teeth are too unsightly I may recommend temporary veneers.

When you visit my dental practice in Chicago for your porcelain veneer fitting for your final dental veneers appointment, I will check your new veneers for fit and comfort. Once I am satisfied with the results, I will bond the veneers into place. After placing, they will be filed and polished for a beautiful Hollywood Smile.

What is Dental Bonding?

Cosmetic dental bonding can be used to repair chipped or cracked teeth. Cosmetic dental bonding is also used for tooth colored fillings and for front teeth fillings. Unlike porcelain veneers, which are permanent, cosmetic dental bonding can be reversed.

Just like porcelain veneers, you need to be diligent about oral hygiene. Also, be aware that bonding will not last as long as veneers and may need to be touched up from time to time. Bonding resin is also more apt to discolor or stain over time.

The Bonding Process

Cosmetic dental bonding material that is matched to the rest of your restored and natural teeth is applied to the damaged tooth or the tooth that is to be cosmetically enhanced. Once the bonding is sculpted into place, I will use a light or laser to cure the material. Once it has hardened, I will file and polish for a natural looking smile.

Whatever decision you make it is important to schedule an appointment with my cosmetic dental practice in Chicago. As an Accredited Member of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, I will make sure that you get the right information to make an informed decision about your new Hollywood Smile.

Call or click for a no obligation cosmetic dentistry consultation with my Elmhurst Dental Practice today.

Anyone Can Have a Hollywood Smile~Even You

If you follow my blog, you will know that for the past two weeks, I have been talking about the much-wanted Hollywood Smile and how it isn’t just the rich and famous that visit a cosmetic dentist to make minor and major improvements.

As a golf aficionado, I will go to one of our abundant great public golf courses nearly every week and am often paired with strangers. It is customary for golfers to want to know within a few holes what you do for a living.

While I normally reply, “dentist,” which can often kill a conversation, I am tempted to say, “I help patients, look and feel more confident!” As a cosmetic dentist, this is actually what I do.

As I interview potential patients in consultation, I ask them what they hope I might do for them, and more often than not, the answer is, and “I want to feel more confident.” Once treatment is completed, I interview them again and ask them how they now feel and the answer most often is, “more confident.” So maybe what I should tell golfers is “I provide confidence!”

With that being said, the answer I most often give is, “dentist,” and I might get a comment about a dental problem, or, “oh I’m looking for a dentist!” I could let the conversation die, but I can’t help myself…I am passionate about and love what I can do for people, and so I ask them, “what kind of dentist are you looking for?” The dumbfounded and quizzical look I get is predictable because most people have a long-standing belief that, “a dentist is a dentist,” and it has never occurred to them that all dentists are not alike until you tell them, and then they have that subsequent, “oh yea, of course,” look.

This reply gets them thinking and open to the prospect that every dentist is an individual and might have a particular interest in or specialty area. I have focused my training in some special areas of dentistry that are not often practiced in a general practice setting. This opens the conversation up a bit to discuss cosmetic dentistry and other areas. I have discovered almost everyone wants a better, more attractive smile, but doesn’t think it is readily available for them. It is.

Today, anyone can improve their smile with cosmetic dentistry, and in properly trained and experienced hands, can have the Hollywood Smile that helps them achieve not only a more attractive smile, but one that promotes health, confidence, and success. A beautiful smile also makes you more approachable.

For more than thirty years, I have been helping patient’s look and feel more confident. Let me do that for you with a gorgeous smile that will boost your self-esteem and improve your overall health.

Dr. Ivan is a leading cosmetic and neuromuscular dentist in Chicago that helps patient’s look and feel more attractive and confident.

Call or click for your no obligation cosmetic Hollywood Smile consultation today.

A Hollywood Smile Helps Regular People Too

In last week’s blog, I talked about the importance of a beautiful smile, regardless of your profession. What Hollywood and entertainers commonly do is to place porcelain veneers on their teeth. These thin layers of porcelain, if done well from qualified and experienced cosmetic dentists, are the treatment of choice to dramatically enhance and improve one’s smile. In fact, what these professionals do eventually filters to the general population as well. Many people realize the tremendous benefit of having both a straighter smile and a smile that really says something about whom you are and who you want to be. It says you intend success and have, “Arrived.”

Your smile is the number one thing people notice about you. With every smile I improve, there is normally a great story. One such recent, “Story,” comes from a 60 year old, slightly built, very shy and reserved teacher with graying hair. She looked a tad older than her age, came into my office with her elderly mom telling me she has felt embarrassed about her detracting and unattractive smile. She would put her hand over her mouth when smiling or laughing. I asked her how long she has felt this way, and of course, the tears came rolling down her face. Her mom was super supportive and encouraging her daughter to improve her smile.

Once done, the positive emails and comments came rolling in. When I see her now, I see her dressing more youthful, coloring her hair, standing straighter, looking more youthful and attractive, and leading into the room with her more confident smile. As unmarried, I told her she would now become more noticed by potential suitors!

Faith is a beautiful, tall, very attractive woman who came to see me many years ago to improve her smile. She started out like a lot of people do, wanting small, very conservative treatments to improve her smile. However, what many people don’t often realize until they have done it, is they want a spectacular smile that can only be achieved by having the more dramatic improvements achieved with porcelain veneers. All too often, patients want to take, “Baby steps,” before taking the plunge, even though they know veneers are in their future.

After years of coming to me for minor but very nice improvements, Faith finally asked me to do veneers for her. I asked her, “Why now?” She said, “I’m a very educated, 37 year old woman and I have no man!” We laughed, but she stated bluntly what many people actually desire, to be more approachable and attractive and nothing says this like a great big, beautiful Hollywood smile!

Three years go by and I haven’t seen her, so I write an email to her to see how she is doing? She replied, “Oh Dr. Ivan, I am so glad you contacted me. A lot has changed since I last saw you. I have a 3-month-old baby, and I am getting married in a couple of months. I got a new job, 46% increase, and I would love to have you come to my wedding!” Her husband, who she met in a fast food restaurant, claims he was attracted to her great smile!

Success! Proof positive a great smile makes you more approachable and attractive.

If you would like a beautiful smile, call or click and schedule a no obligation smile consultation with my dental practice in Chicago.

A new smile is waiting; all you have to do is make the call.

You Need More than Straight Teeth for a Hollywood Smile

While subsequently watching the popular NBC talent show, “The Voice,” which I love, and the Billboard Music awards one night, it didn’t occur to me while watching, “O Town,” perform, that the professional singers have beautifully enhanced smiles. Once you flip to the other channel you see what normal, regular unenhanced smiles look like when the amateurs on, “The Voice,” flash their pearly whites.

Then it occurred to me how normal and usual great looking smiles of the professionals have become to us, and it’s not just having orthodontic treatment and straight teeth.

Orthodontists are the first cosmetic dentists to make unattractive, crooked smiles more attractive by making them straighter. Americans are known all over the world to have the nicest smiles thanks to instituted orthodontic treatment in this country.

France has relatively recently introduced orthodontic treatment in their national health care. Along with the smoking cessation trend in France, young people in the country have smiles that are more attractive.

Today straight teeth alone are not enough, especially for people in the public eye. Yellowed, chipped, worn and aged teeth will still result in an ugly smile. Today Hollywood and now many people, do two things on a routine basis to enhance their TV smiles.

First, they routinely remove all their old metal fillings so they are not visible on TV when they open wide to sing or when the latest generation of spectacular OLED TV’s can see almost every blemish. TV and movie entertainers remove anything that can detract from their appearance. This attitude has filtered to the general population as well.

Sales professionals have long known about it, but now we are seeing teachers, mechanics, and plumbers realizing the tremendous confidence building benefits that can be achieved by having nicer looking smiles with cosmetic dentistry.

If you think metal fillings are passé, you would be wrong. Just watch the young amateurs open wide to sing on The Voice, and you will routinely see rows of unsightly metal fillings.

OK, now that I have brought your attention to this, you will notice that I haven’t placed a metal filling in any of my patients in the last 28 years. Evidently, dentists all over the U.S. are still placing these ugly and archaic, potentially hazardous metal fillings in these young people’s mouths.

Sales people and TV anchors and Hollywood stars understand the issue of how you must reduce anything that can be a distraction when communicating on TV and in the movies. It is a cosmetic distraction and can adversely affect their image, or their message.

These stars are on TV for very short bursts of time, snippets of news, a 3-minute song, or a great lifetime story told and portrayed in a 90-minute movie. So they must act, look, and even feel perfect to effectively communicate what they intend. This is why movies are so expensive to make, and why makeup, wardrobe, scenery, and what appears on camera conveys the correct message as perfectly as possible.

In my next blog, I will share more cosmetic dental revelations that may convince you to call my dental practice for a no obligation smile consultation.

If I have already convinced you, call or click for a cosmetic dentistry dental appointment today.

Clear Braces for a Comfortable and Beautiful Smile

Clear braces may be the answer if you are tired of living with your less than perfect smile. With clear braces, those two crooked teeth or that gap that has been driving you crazy for years will be history.

Invisalign® is the solution for slightly tipped, crooked, rotated, or gappy teeth. In less than two years, you can have a beautiful new smile without wearing uncomfortable wires and brackets.

What is Invisalign®?

According to Chicago Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Ivan Valcarenghi, Invisalign® is a patented system that uses clear plastic aligners to move your teeth into position. Depending on your customized clear braces plan, you will be given anywhere between 11 and 31 sets of comfortable aligners that you will swap out every seven to 14 days. Every time you wear a new set of aligners, you are one-step closer to the perfect smile.

What is the Invisalign® Treatment Plan?

Regardless of your prescription, you will need to wear your braces 20 to 22 hours every day. The only time you remove your invisible aligners is when you eat, brush, and floss your teeth. Because Invisalign® is removable, you will not be as susceptible to tooth decay or gum disease. Wires and brackets are attached to your teeth making you more prone to oral problems, as it is impossible to clean under the braces.

Advantages of Invisalign®

More Attractive-Invisalign® looks better than wires and brackets. Unlike conventional wires, the only person that will know you are wearing braces is Dr. Ivan and his team from his cosmetic dental practice in Chicago. Invisalign® is nearly invisible.

Comfort-Because your aligners are removable, unlike conventional wires and brackets that must stay in place for the duration of the treatment, you can remove them when you like. However, you must wear your aligners between 20 to 22 hours every day; otherwise, you will delay your progress.

Safety-Clear braces reduce the risk of gum and teeth damage. Conventional braces can scratch or even puncture your gums, the inside of your mouth or your tongue. Clear braces are made from comfortable and safe plastic that reduces damage that is usually caused by metal braces, including tooth decay and gum disease.

Treatment Duration-The average Invisalign® treatment is between 12 and 18 months, however, some of Dr. Ivan’s patients have seen results in less time. Old school wires and brackets can take up to two years or longer.

If you would like more information regarding clear braces, or any other type of cosmetic dentistry treatment in Elmhurst, call or click and schedule an appointment with Dr. Ivan Valcarenghi today.

Your Chicago cosmetic dentist is ready to give you a new smile with Invisalign®. Call now.

You Deserve a New Smile with Cosmetic Dentistry

The fastest way to a new smile is with cosmetic dentistry, and if your grin leaves you feeling self conscious, it’s time to call Dr. Ivan Valcarenghi who can thoroughly examine your teeth gums to determine what types of cosmetic dentistry procedures would be best for your needs.

In some cases, all you may require is a professional tooth whitening session. You would be amazed at how tooth whitening can change the entire appearance of your smile. However, if your teeth are cracked, have aged over time, are filled with older restorations, or just aren’t what they used to be, Dr. Ivan Smile is the only dentist in Chicago to consider for cosmetic dentistry.

What Happens During My Consultation?

During your dental appointment, Dr. Ivan will examine your teeth and gums. This will help determine if your mouth is in good shape for cosmetic dentistry. If you have a cavity or two, suffer from gingivitis or the more serious form of gum disease, periodontitis, any and all of those issues will need to be addressed before you can even consider porcelain veneers, cosmetic dental bonding, dental implants, or any other type of cosmetic dental procedure.

After the health of your teeth and gums are assessed, pictures and x-rays will be taken of your teeth and gums. This will help Dr. Ivan come up with a customized plan for your new smile.

Dr. Ivan may recommend:

• Porcelain Veneers
• Dental Implants
• Cosmetic Dental Bonding
• Invisalign
• Gum Lift
• Same Day Dental Restorations
• Tooth Colored Fillings
• Inlays
• Onlays

As a member of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, Dr. Ivan has the experience and the knowledge to provide you with a smile assessment consultation with cutting edge cosmetic dentistry technology that will truly make you smile again.

If your smile is making you unhappy, call or click and schedule an appointment with Dr. Ivan Valcarenghi. Dr. Ivan really can turn your world around.

Call or click for more information regarding your cosmetic dentistry options today.

Porcelain Veneers are the Only Permanent Solution

Porcelain veneers could be the solution for your chipped, stained, or crooked smile. Porcelain veneers will make you look like a celebrity when you contact Dr. Ivan Smiles for a no obligation porcelain veneers consultation.

Unlike cosmetic dental bonding, which is more affordable than porcelain veneers, veneers can last for decades as long as you take good care of your restorations.

Porcelain Veneers

Veneers are thin overlays that Dr. Ivan uses to cover the fronts of each tooth, which not only improves the appearance, but also helps your overall oral health. Dental veneers can cover discolored teeth that cannot be lightened with professional tooth whitening, repair chips and cracks and fill in the space between your front teeth. Porcelain veneers are also used to reshape teeth that are too long or too short, or teeth that are misshaped. Porcelain veneers can also work wonders if you are a notorious tooth grinder. Crooked teeth can also be helped with dental veneers.

Dental veneers can be made in several different thicknesses from wafer thin like a contact lens to millimeters thick. Veneer thickness is based on what you and Dr. Ivan have decided on. Generally, the larger the change, the thicker the veneer. In other words, teeth that overlap or are moderately crowded will need more reshaping by your dentist in Chicago. Teeth that are discolored may require thicker veneers to mask the dark color as well.

Most traditional dental veneers will require some enamel removal to make way for the veneer. Because of this, porcelain veneers are permanent.

A beautiful smile is good for your confidence and good for your overall health. Porcelain veneers can give you a gorgeous healthy smile that will last for years as you practice good oral hygiene such as brushing twice and flossing once a day. Don’t forget to schedule regular dental appointments with Dr. Ivan and watch what you eat.

For your no obligation porcelain veneers consultation, call or click and talk to Dr. Ivan Valcarenghi today.

Why a Smile is Good for You and Everyone Around You

Dr. Ivan Valcarenghi explains that cosmetic dentistry could be what you need if you never feel like smiling.

A smile is contagious. When you smile, people smile back. Smiling, even if you are faking it, makes people feel good. Putting on a happy face can also lead to real happiness, amusement, and joy.

When you smile on purpose, you are changing your brains chemistry. When you smile you can help yourself and others deal with anxiety and depression.

Laughing and smiling can reduce stress and when you consider that mood and body language are connected, it just makes good sense to laugh or smile on purpose. Grinning relaxes the muscles in your face while calming your nervous system.
Laughing releases endorphins and sends additional oxygen to your brain. Laughing can also help lower high blood pressure and stress, and can be a real mood booster.

When you smile, you are bonding with others. Even a fake laugh or smile can turn contagious. Try getting a group together and ask everyone to fake laugh. You can bet there won’t be a straight face in the room.

Smiling also has powerful benefits to your well being and your overall health, however, if your smile isn’t something you like to show off, it could make you feel worse.

Dr. Ivan Valcarenghi is a member of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry and can turn your frown into a beautiful smile using cosmetic dentistry techniques to enhance what you already have.

Some of the cosmetic dentistry procedures that Dr. Ivan Smiles may recommend include:


Smiling makes you and everyone around you feel better. Call or click, and talk to Dr. Ivan Valcarenghi who can determine what types of cosmetic dentistry would be best for your sad smile.

Call or click and schedule your no obligation consultation with Dr. Ivan today.