August 26, 2009

Cosmetic Dentistry: Your Path Towards A Life Without Embarrassment

Nicki is a practicing pediatrician and lives in Minneapolis along with her husband, Dr.Mark A Kleive, a dentist Maplewood offering Teeth Whitening St Paul.


With the earliest known practices recorded from 7000 BC, Dentistry is a profession which has remained socially important throughout the millennia. With very little known about oral health, medicine men and women would invent explanations for dental conditions such as "tooth worms" creating holes in teeth and cause them to decay. With today's technology and studies in the fields of science and medicine, we now have an advanced understanding of tooth decay is and how to take treat it. Those who have straight and healthy teeth, rarely think about their smiles. However, people whose teeth and dental heath are compromised know the embarrassment that dental problems can cause on a daily basis. A Cosmetic Dentist can help you with any dental problems you may be facing.

Cosmetic Dentistry can offer you a variety of solutions to your dental woes. Historically, Cosmetic Dentists were only for high profile celebrities. But advances in dental technology have made these solutions affordable for many people.

If you have silver fillings which make your teeth appear dark and unpleasant, a Cosmetic Dentist can remove the old, dark fillings and replace them with white fillings that will blend in with the natural color of your teeth. Composite resin fillings, also known as white fillings, can also make your teeth look whiter and more appealing when you smile or laugh.

If your teeth are dull and stained from food, drinks, smoking or just have lost their luster with age, consider a teeth whitening procedure. Teeth whitening can be performed through various methods such as laser tooth whitening, in-office systems with a special light activated gel, or through a series of whitening trays. Since tooth whitening is an attractive option to rejuvenate one's smile, people often consider over-the-counter teeth whiteners because they are cheaper. However, these over the counter products lose effectiveness if they aren't followed exactly and often only whiten the teeth only slightly. Some tooth whitening treatments, like the ones offered in malls, dehydrate teeth so they appear whiter, but the results only last for a short period of time. A Cosmetic Dentist's teeth whitening methods are more effective and long lasting with a variety of options you can choose from.

Because some tooth whitening options can cause tooth sensitivity, it is important to talk to your dentist about all the pros and cons of tooth whitening before you choose a treatment option. If your teeth are severely stained or chipped, a dental bonding procedure from a Cosmetic Dentist can help cover and correct unsightly issues. This procedure is usually reserved for those who suffer from significantly discolored teeth.

If you have crooked teeth and would like to assess teeth straightening options, you'll be glad to know you do not have to have harsh metal brackets on your teeth for years. A Cosmetic Dentist can provide you teeth straightening options that will be invisible to others. Invisalign offers clear, plastic aligners which are nearly invisible to the eye when worn. The aligners help shape your teeth and move them to enhance the aesthetics of your smile and the functionality of your bite.

If you have a missing tooth that makes you feel awkward, Cosmetic Dentists can offer several solutions including the use of a dental implant procedure to fill the gap. The artificial tooth is blended to match your surrounding teeth, so it is indistinguishable from the others. If necessary, dental bridges can also be used to fill the gap of missing teeth.

Cosmetic Dentists will evaluate the current condition of your gums and teeth and give you an idea of how to improve both the beauty and functionality of your smile. They can advise you on the length of the procedure as well as the fee, including the cost to your oral health if the problems go unaddressed. For major or multi-step dental procedures, many Cosmetic Dentists offer payment installment plans so you can get the dental treatment you need without worrying. A Cosmetic Dentist will be able to provide you a variety of options so you can start smiling without embarrassment. Broken, stained, chipped, crooked or missing teeth? All those dental problems can be corrected by working collaboratively with a Cosmetic Dentist.

Role of Veneers in Dentistry

Nicki is a practicing pediatrician and lives in Minneapolis along with her husband, Dr.Mark A Kleive, a dentist in Maplewood offering Teeth Whitening Minneapolis.


There are many factors that can have an adverse impact on the quality of your smile, from tooth crookedness to discoloration to unsightly gaps. Whatever the cause, a less-than-perfect smile can dramatically affect your self-esteem, personality, and ability to communicate with others.

For many, dental veneers (often referred to as porcelain veneers) provide an ideal solution. Formed from ceramic, these custom-made, eggshell-thin coverings are designed to mimic the look and feel of natural enamel. They are placed over the surface of teeth to conceal chips, gaps, cracks, or other problems that can jeopardize dental health or aesthetics. Dental veneers can provide an easy, painless way to achieve a bright, confident smile.

Problems Addressed by Porcelain Veneers

There are several different conditions that can be quickly and painlessly solved by veneers:

Chipped Teeth: Teeth can chip for a variety of reasons, including stress-induced grinding, an accident or trauma, using your teeth for purposes they are not intended for, or a fracture that causes a gradual weakening. Regardless of the cause, chipped teeth can detract from the appearance of your smile while increasing the risk of discoloration, sensitivity, and decay.
Crooked Teeth: In addition to affecting the appearance of your teeth, crookedness can cause dental pain and inhibit good oral hygiene. Those who leave the problem untreated are more prone to tooth decay, tooth loss, and bad breath. It can also be difficult to chew properly with crooked teeth, increasing the chances of jaw misalignment.
Discolorations: The most obvious effect of discolored teeth (a wearing-down or dulling of surface enamel) is a dirty appearance, creating the implication of poor dental health. Noticeable stains on the surface of your teeth can make you look older than your age, while drawing more attention to other issues, such as gaps and crookedness. Varying degrees of discoloration can be caused by numerous factors:
Genetic predisposition
Prolonged exposure to certain foods or drinks such as coffee or tea
Ingestion of or contact with of certain medications
Smoking cigars or cigarettes
Nerve damage to a tooth during an accident or fall.
Gaps: Anyone who's ever had extra space between their teeth knows that gaps can have a dramatic impact on self-esteem. Those born with gaps often notice the problem worsening with age. They wonder if people are staring at the gap in their teeth or they find themselves reluctant to talk or smile. In addition to affecting your confidence, the condition can also make it difficult to chew or speak.
Misshapen Teeth: Even if you have perfect dental health, just one misshapen tooth can cause your smile to look flawed or unhealthy.
All of the above: Many folks don't have a single dental affliction. A combination of genetics, lifestyle choices, and normal wear and tear can create a set of unique circumstances.
In most cases, depending on the severity of these conditions, smiles can be aesthetically and functionally enhanced with the use of porcelain veneers.

Benefits of Dental Veneers

Porcelain veneers offer a number of advantages to today's dental patients:

A more natural look: With today's enhanced dental technology, ceramic veneers offer a high degree of translucence, making them virtually indistinguishable from your natural teeth.
Custom design and creation: Porcelain veneers are custom-matched to the color of your teeth. If you desire a whiter smile, veneers can be used in conjunction with whitening to create a dazzling smile. Veneers are designed specifically for your mouth, your lifestyle and your individual circumstances.
Quicker results: Unlike straightening with braces, tooth whitening systems, or complex dental bonding, veneers can be applied in just one or two visits, immediately achieving a bright, even smile.
Lower cost: Veneers are typically less expensive than other, multi-step, more complex treatments including surgery.
Long-term protection: In addition to looking good, veneers are durable enough to strengthen weak or damaged teeth, potentially eliminating the need for a bridge, crown, or other, more invasive procedures. Also, if properly maintained, veneers can last several decades.
There are several different options and brands available for dental veneers, such as Lumineers. Before making a decision about what type or brand of veneer is best, contact a cosmetic dentist who is experienced in placing porcelain veneers. Ask the dentist to see examples of their work, such as before and after photographs where porcelain veneers were used. Ask if the dentist offers a no-fee consultation, and never be rushed into making a decision about your smile. You and the dentist should work collaboratively to come up with a treatment that fits your oral health needs, lifestyle and budget.

TMJ: Causes and Treatment

Dr.Mark A Kleive, DDS is a cosmetic dentist in Minneapolis offering Teeth Whitening in Minneapolis who will work closely with you to give you your healthiest, most beautiful smile.

Temporomandibular joint disorder, often referred to as TMD or TMJ, is a disorder of the jaw, jaw joint and connecting muscles and tissues. The syndrome affects the temporomandibular joint (TMJ), the joint on either side of the head that connects the lower jaw to the skull, which is vitally important for everyday activities like chewing, speaking, yawning, and more.

Symptoms of TMJ

The TMJ joint is very complex. In addition to muscles in the jaw, face, and neck, it also involves the bones and cartilage of the joint, as well as numerous blood vessels, nerves, and ligaments. As a result, sufferers of TMD can experience vastly different symptoms, some of which can be confused with earache, neck injury, or other kinds of body strain.

People suffering from TMD may experience:

Headache or migraines
Stiffness or popping in the TMJ joint
A clicking or grinding noise in the TMJ joint when the jaw is moved
Limited mobility in the joint, causing difficulty opening or closing the mouth
Difficulty biting or chewing
Wear or damage to teeth
Pain in the facial muscles, shoulders, and neck
Earache, ringing in the ears, or hearing loss
Pain or tenderness in and around the jaw itself
If problems continue without appropriate TMJ treatment, these symptoms can progress to include chronic headaches and face pain.

Causes of TMD

There are several common triggers for the TMJ disorder, including:

Misalignment in the bite
Orthodontic appliances, such as braces
Stress and emotional tension
Gum chewing or nail biting
Chewing on objects like pens or pencils
Fractures, dislocations, or other injuries
Teeth grinding or clenching the jaw
Systemic diseases; gout, lupus, and fibromyalgia
Sleep disturbances like sleep apnea
Extensive dental procedures causing stress on the joints
Arthritis
Although any of these issues can cause TMJ problems, there isn't always a direct correlation. Some people can have a misalignment of their bite or have high stress levels for years without developing TMJ syndrome, while others suffer from it without dramatic correlation of these triggers.

TMJ Treatment

Depending on the cause of the problem, there are a number of TMJ treatment options available, ranging from lifestyle changes that can prevent the disorder to specific dental therapies. For very extreme cases, surgery may be necessary.

Relaxation and physical exercise: The first and most common TMJ treatment is relaxation and physical exercise, which can help people deal with stress more effectively. This often lessens the frequency and impact of clenching and grinding of the teeth that contributes to a majority of TMJ cases. Eating soft foods, using anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen or acetaminophen, and treating the area with heating pads or warm compresses can also be a helpful temporary solution.
Correcting tooth and bite alignment: If symptoms persist, a specifically designed bite splint, or bite leveling orthotic, is often the best initial therapy to improve jaw function and decrease symptoms. Adjustment to the teeth or the bite alignment is sometimes required to correct the problem that initially contributed to the TMJ disorder. Repair to the teeth may also be necessary if there has been wear or grinding on the chewing surfaces. Examples can include the use of dental crowns or veneers to correct the levelness of the bite and restore worn-down teeth,
Surgery: In rare cases, surgery may be required to repair a deteriorating jaw bone (when the cause is osteoarthritis) or correct trauma from an accident that might have misaligned the jaw or injured the facial muscles. Less than five percent of patients need surgery to correct their TMJ disorder.
To find the best treatment approach for TMJ, it's a good idea to see a reputable TMJ dentist who has extensive training and experience in treating TMJ disorders. A highly qualified dentist can help to identify the root of the problem and choose a treatment plan that's conducive to your lifestyle, budget, and desired results. Make sure the dentist you select takes the time to listen to you about your lifestyle and symptoms. Collaboration with your dentist is necessary to diagnose and implement a plan for an ideal treatment outcome.

July 23, 2009

Dental Implants: A Natural, Permanent Way to Reclaim Your Smile

Nicki is a practicing pediatrician and lives in Minneapolis along with her husband, Dr.Mark A Kleive, dentist in St.Paul, Minneapolis.

Anyone who has ever been missing a tooth for any length of time knows the impact it can have on your self-image. Gaps in your teeth--even if they're in the back of your mouth--can make you look considerably older than your age and imply a general deterioration of oral health. It is essential to maintain your oral healthcare just how you take good care of the rest of your body. The best solution for this problem would be to consult an Implant Dentist to get dental implants. In addition to impacting your appearance, missing teeth can also cause a variety of other potentially dangerous conditions:
Increased risk of gum disease, tooth decay, and cavities
Potential jaw joint problems (such as TMJ) due to an uneven bite
Shifting and tilting of surrounding teeth
Disintegration of the jaw bone above or below the missing teeth

With the recent technological advancements in dental implants, you don't have to resign yourself to living with missing teeth or settling for temporary fixes that are often inconvenient and uncomfortable. By consulting an Implant Dentist, you'll take the first step toward regaining a healthful and complete smile.
What is a Dental Implant?
Unlike dentures,bridges or other temporary solutions, dental implants allow for the permanent natural, seamless replacement of missing teeth. A Minneapolis Implant Dentist will use a solid titanium post to create a durable root which is used as an anchor and inserted into the gap created by the missing tooth. Titanium is renowned for its high compatibility with bone and gum tissue, fusing seamlessly with no irritation or swelling. Once the jawbone has grown around the implant and created a sturdy foundation, a replacement tooth such as a crown or bridge is inserted into the anchor, achieving the strength and appearance of a natural tooth.
Benefits of Using Dental Implants
Greater strength and durability--a permanent solution for missing teeth
A more natural appearance compared to dentures or bridges
No invasiveness or risk of damage to the healthy surrounding teeth
Reduced risk of bone loss and receding gums
Unrivaled biting and chewing power
Greater comfort and confidence than dentures
Added support and stability for existing dentures or bridges
Can be used to replace one or more missing teeth

Other tooth replacement options such as bridges or dentures can occasionally be challenging to maintain over time. Bridges can cause additional stress on neighboring teeth and the ability to easily keep them clean can decrease with age. Dental implants provide a natural, lifelong solution for missing teeth. Dental implants are a worthwhile investment in your overall oral health and lifestyle so you can stop feeling embarrassed. While they can cost more than dentures or other tooth replacement options, they do not have the ongoing or additional maintenance costs that temporary dental methods have. You'll also be free to enjoy the foods you love, without the worries that come with temporary replacement methods. Consult a Minneapolis Implant Dentist to stop worrying and start smiling without embarrassment.

June 4, 2009

So You Want To Be A Dentist

Nicki is a practicing pediatrician and lives in Minneapolis along with her husband, Dr.Mark A Kleive, cosmetic dentist in St.Paul, Minneapolis.

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