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Posts for: December, 2017

By John Sartorio, D.M.D.
December 19, 2017
Category: Oral Health
Tags: oral health  

When you’re going through hard economic times, the natural thing to do is cut areas of spending you believe you can do without. Unfortunately, many people include regular dental care in this low-priority category.

But even if your finances have become strained you should still try to maintain your dental care if at all possible. Saving a few dollars now could cost you a lot more in the long run.

Of course, this may mean focusing on just the basics for a while and prioritize your treatment options with a strong emphasis on preventive care. To put together a plan you should first undergo a thorough dental exam to learn your mouth’s current level of health, as well as take a look at your dietary practices, family history and hygiene practices to gauge your risk for tooth decay or periodontal (gum) disease.

From there, it’s a good idea to make changes in habits and lifestyle that will improve your teeth and gums’ long-term health, a prudent thing to do financially as well. Eat a nutritious diet high in fresh fruits, vegetables and dairy products and low in added sugar. Practice daily brushing and flossing to remove bacterial plaque from tooth surfaces, a primary cause of dental disease. And, keep to a schedule of regular dental office cleanings and checkups to remove any deep-seated plaque and identify developing dental disease before it becomes too serious.

Even when we find problems, there are usually treatment options within most people’s financial ability, like newer, less-expensive tooth filling materials that are both attractive and longer lasting than older types.  At the very least you may benefit from temporary measures that postpone a permanent restoration until you’re in a better position financially to handle it.

And, don’t hesitate to ask us for help in working out a care strategy that fits your current finances and insurance coverage. By creating these long-term goals, we can help you get the most out of your financial resources now that can save money — and provide you better oral health — in the future.

If you would like more information on managing dental care, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Cost-Saving Treatment Alternatives.”

By John Sartorio, D.M.D.
December 13, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: orthodontics   braces   invisalign  

Braces aren't the only way to straighten your teeth. Invisalign completely eliminates metal wires and brackets, making it possible to change invisalignyour smile without calling attention to yourself. Pittsburgh, PA, dentist, Dr. John Sartorio explains how the Invisalign process works.

A straighter smile with absolutely no wires

Moving teeth with steady pressure is the foundation of every orthodontic system. The pressure can come from metal or ceramic braces or the removable aligner trays that the Invisalign system uses. If you opt for Invisalign rather than traditional braces, we'll take digital impressions, photographs and X-rays of your teeth in our Pittsburgh office, then combine them to create a computerized 3D representation of your mouth. The 3D image is used to devise a straightening plan that will completely transform your smile. A few weeks after your photo and X-ray session, you'll receive the series of trays that you'll wear throughout your treatment. Each set of trays in the series is usually worn for two weeks.

Invisalign offers more than just cosmetic benefits

Because your aligner trays are clear, most people won't be able to tell that you're undergoing orthodontic treatment. Many people choose Invisalign because it offers a more discreet option, but the system also offers other important advantages, including:

  • Convenience: You can remove your trays when needed, unlike metal or ceramic braces that must remain attached to your teeth until your treatment ends. Want to look your best for your wedding or prom? Simply take out the trays before the big event and reinsert them when it's over. The trays can also be removed when you play sports. Although you can take out the trays occasionally, it's important to wear them for at least 20 hours most days.
  • Comfort: There are no wires to cut your mouth or painful adjustments when you straighten your teeth with Invisalign. Invisalign aligner trays are constructed of clear, comfortable plastic designed to prevent irritation.
  • Easy Care: Aligner trays are removed when you brush and floss your teeth, making it simple to continue your usual hygiene routine. Since you'll take out the trays when you eat, you won't have to worry that food will become trapped in them.

Ready to find out if Invisalign is a good choice for you? Call Pittsburgh, PA, dentist, Dr. Sartorio at (412) 831-8700 to schedule an appointment.

By John Sartorio, D.M.D.
December 04, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures

As a parent you want your child to have the best possible start in life. One of the greatest gifts you can provide them is a positive experience in dental care—especially visiting the dentist.

Unfortunately, not all children are so lucky. Visiting the dentist for them is foreign and forbidding; it leaves such a negative impression they may avoid the dentist later in life even when faced with acute problems.

It doesn’t have to be like that. Here are 3 ways you can help your child have a great experience at the dentist.

Start dental visits early. The best time to begin dental visits is before your child’s first birthday as their teeth begin to erupt. Dental diseases like tooth decay can begin as early as two months so it’s vital to detect any problems as soon as possible. Establishing an early relationship with your child’s dentist benefits you too with helpful tips and advice from them on dental care at home. And, children visiting the dentist early are more likely to become accustomed to it as a routine part of life, and more likely to continue the habit on their own.

Find the right dentist. The right dental practice can make all the difference in the world for your child’s comfort level. Parents often choose a pediatric dentist who specializes not only in dental care for children and adolescents but in how to engage with them and put them at ease. The key, though, is to find a dentist and staff who work well with children and understand how to make them feel at home in their office.

Display a positive attitude. You’ve probably already noticed how your child picks up on your feelings in different situations—which often affect how they feel and act too. So be sure when you visit the dentist with them you have a positive, proactive attitude, ready to partner with their provider in treatment and prevention measures. And above all display a calm and relaxed manner: your child will be more apt to follow your cue and relax too.

If you would like more information on providing great dental care for your child, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Taking the Stress out of Dentistry for Kids.”