general dentistry  Chicago, IL

General Dentistry

Helping our patients maintain a healthy mouth and smile is the main goal of general dentistry. We prefer to provide more minor, preventive care than to see patients suffer with more intensive treatments from a problem that was not managed in time. We want to ensure that your oral health is in its optimal state and positively contributing to the health of your entire body. We are here to brighten your smile and pave the way for a brighter life.

Cleanings And Exams  Chicago, IL

Cleanings And Exams

How often should you have checkups and cleanings? The common answer is every 6 months” but in truth, it depends on the status of your teeth and gums.

Why?

For those whose dental history shows good resistance to decay and gingivitis and periodontal diseases, the 6 month interval makes sense. Whatever the bacteria are doing in the mouth, they do it slowly. But in that time, if plaque is building up, if stains are beginning appear, if tartar is building up, then 6 months is plenty of time to necessitate professional clean-up and polishing. If a cavity is developing, it can be found and fixed before it gets very large or deep. If a review of oral hygiene techniques will get you back on track, then 6 months is not enough time to let you get into serious trouble.

If that is not you, then is this the story of your mouth? Checkup, decay found, fillings done… checkup, more decay found, more fillings or larger fillings… checkup and more decay… emergency root canal or extraction. At every checkup are you told you need to brush “better” because you have or are getting gingivitis or periodontal disease? Is every cleaning bloody even though you never bleed when you brush at home? If so, then the 6-month interval is just too long for you. In these mouths, the bacteria are having a wonderful life at your expense!

Dr. Bloom is very interested in helping patients to break these patterns and to get into a new pattern of consistent oral health. For this to happen, more frequent checkups and cleanings are required… at 4 month or at 3 month intervals depending on severity of your condition. While Dr. Bloom believes you are not necessarily at fault that the bacteria do this to you, he strongly believes that you have the responsibility to defeat those germs by thoroughly cleaning your own teeth daily and to fight those germs with any means necessary. Brushing more often is not necessarily better. Scrubbing harder is not necessarily better (and is likely to be worse!). Spending more time brushing is not necessarily better. Contrary to many commercials, there is no magic mouthwash or toothpaste or toothbrush that is necessarily going to make a difference. What counts is technique and Dr. Bloom has developed unique techniques that you are not likely to be taught anywhere else. Nearly every single patient taught by Dr. Bloom in the past 20+ years has remarked within the first few minutes that they were never shown anything like it before… and nearly every single one has immediately grasped the value that his techniques have in developing a cleaner, healthier mouth.

Dr. Bloom will act as your teacher and coach to help you perfect your oral hygiene routine. In many instances the home care routine is expanded to include prescriptions of disinfectant rinses or prescription strength fluoride rinses or toothpastes, or any of several new technologies that have proven to change the oral environment and allow you to become one of those ‘lucky’ ones who don’t continually suffer decay or gum problems. This change takes time, but it is possible. Many of Dr. Bloom’s patients have experienced this turnaround and now enjoy simpler routine checkups and cleanings 3 and sometimes 4 times a year.  After several years of consistent checkups, the 6 month interval can be reconsidered.

In the end, the “unlucky” ones must realize that there is no treatment in the dental office that can make you immune to repeated problems… let the bacteria live there long enough and you will find they have given you the same problems all over again!!

There is no filling that prevents new decay…no root canal or crown that prevents new decay… there is no magic toothbrush or toothpaste that, by itself, gives you immunity to future gum problems or decay problems.

Dr. Bloom’s goal is to fix what needs fixing and to teach you how to keep the problems from happening all over again… so that your future dental needs are basically maintenance and/or any cosmetic improvements you desire.

Dr. Bloom can help you defeat the bacterial enemy that has caused your problems… call today to begin the process.

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Emergency Care  Chicago, IL

Emergency Care

We can diagnose the problem, give you options for treatment and most importantly, relieve your pain. If your regular dentist is unavailable, we can help you today and then send your dentist a report of your visit, your treatment and any x-rays taken. Dr. Bloom’s varied background and training allow him to treat your urgent care dental needs with expertise and confidence, including:

Abscess Treatment
An abscess is a collection of pus. It is the result of a defensive reaction of the tissue to contain and control infection. When an abcess is painful it often means the infection is very active and pressure is building. When an abcess is spreading, pain often subsides because pressure is lessened but it means the infection is very active and the pus found a way out of the immediate area. A dental abcess that spreads can become a medical emergency. In the neck it can interfere with breathing or swallowing and near the nose or eye it can spread in to the brain area. Prevention is the best approach, but second best is early treatment at the first symptom of pain.

Abscesses do not heal themselves without removal of the source of infection. Dental abcesses can arise from the gums or from a tooth. An examination and xrays are needed to help determine the cause. Whatever the cause, the source must be removed to initiate healing while antibiotics are used to control the very active bacteria if they’ve spread out from the source. Whenever possible, Dr. Bloom will remove the source of infection immediately and then prescribe antibiotics to continue fighting the bacteria.

In the case of a gum abcess, the area is numbed and the infected area is cleaned and disinfected and if the gum pocket is very deep around a tooth, the tooth is extracted. In the case of a tooth abcess, the decision needs to be made whether to save the tooth or to remove it. Dr. Bloom will discuss your options with you. It will be your decision. (and read “Toothache Pain Relief”)

An over-the-counter pain reliever Tylenol™ or Aspirin may relieve some of the pain temporarily, but call Dr. Bloom or your dentist as soon as possible. Do not place aspirin directly on the gums or in the mouth to dissolve. Aspirin will burn the tissues of the mouth.

Don’t suffer, call now at (773) 777-3309. We are available to help you with all your urgent and emergency dental needs.

Porcelain Repair / Temporary Crown Repair or Replacement
When porcelain on an existing crown chips, we can sometimes restore it using bonding techniques. In some cases, we may need to replace the crown.

If the damaged crown cannot be fixed with bonding techniques or if the repair is re-damaged, then Dr. Bloom can discuss other options with you. Porcelain fractured from a fixed bridge can sometimes be repaired by a special crown that is cemented over the damage area, somewhat like a thimble fits over a finger to protect it.

Temporary crowns and bridges are placed with temporary cement. If they come out before the regular crown or bridge is ready, then they need to be recemented to protect the underlying tooth as well as to prevent other teeth from shifting. If you are unable to see your regular dentist for recementing temporary crowns or bridges, Dr. Bloom may be able to help you. Temporary restorations are very adequate for the typical time they are required, which is 1-6 weeks. Temporary restorations are too soft for long term use and temporary cement is unable to seal out bacteria and saliva for extended periods, so it is critically important to follow through and have the ‘permanent’ restorations placed without undue delay.

40 years experience, serving your dental emergency needs. Call us: in Chicago at 773-777-3309.

Emergency Extractions
When there is no hope or if you choose to not save a painful tooth, then extraction makes sense. Some teeth can be removed without consideration for future replacement, eg. wisdom teeth… but if future replacement is important, then Dr. Bloom will discuss your options with you.

Before an extraction, we need at least 1 x-ray to show the size and shape of the roots and the surrounding area. We will get the area throroughly numbed. When the area is numb, you cannot feel pain… if you feel pain, then it isn’t numb enough. We always allow you to signal us to stop the procedure if you are feeling pain. We want you to experience none. During the procedure, you can watch a video from our extensive collection… Audio/video distraction is highly effective in reducing anxiety. We also have nitrous oxide (laughing gas) for those that require a little more help relaxing.

If you are certain that you require general anesthetic or IV sedation, then Dr. Bloom can suggest a local Oral Surgeon to take care of you.

Don’t suffer, call now! In Chicago at 773-777-3309. We are available to help you with all your urgent and emergency dental needs.

Sports Injuries
Sports injuries can include injury to the teeth and in order to safeguard against potentially serious and painful injuries certain precautions should be taken. Mouth guards are a good form of protection and should be worn by all athletes, young and old.

Mouth guards act as shock absorbers for the teeth and help to avoid fractured or lost teeth. There are 3 types of mouth guards: custom fitted latex, mouth formed and stock. All 3 vary in price, effectiveness and comfort. Dr. Bloom can recommend which one would be most useful relative to the sport during which it will be worn: hockey, lacrosse, football, squash and boxing. These sports are high risk as far as dental injuries are concerned, and necessary precautions should be taken. Although volleyball, baseball, skate boarding and basketball are less risky, proper prevention should be exercised with these sports as well. Exercising good judgment and proper preventive measures should avoid major injuries.

A fractured jaw needs to be cared for immediately, as does a tooth, which has been knocked out if it is going to be successfully re-implanted. If the jaw is broken, it will be painful, and very difficult to use the jaw. Immobilize the jaw, you may want to tie a cloth around it, do not move your mouth. Go to your dentist or emergency room immediately.

If a tooth has been knocked out, pick it up carefully by the crown, not the root. Picking it up by the root can injure the nerve endings at the tip of the root. Rinse it off and place the tooth back into its socket. If that is too painful, place the tooth between the gum and cheek so as to keeps it wet with your saliva. If there is a risk of swallowing the tooth, place it in a glass of milk, salt water or damp cloth, in that order of preference. If there is bleeding or swelling, apply ice for swelling and pressure for bleeding.

If a tooth suffered a very large chip and the chip can be located, keep it moist and bring it with you… sometimes it can be bonded back in place.

Call now! In Chicago at 773-777-3309. We are available to help you with all your urgent and emergency dental needs.

Toothache Pain Relief
A true toothache is a evidence of a problem with the nerve/pulp tissue of the tooth. Sometimes over-the-counter toothache treatments will work until you can come in for diagnosis and treatment, and sometimes they don’t work very well at all. One thing you should not do is place an aspirin on the gums next to the painful tooth… aspirin is acidic and will cause a burn on the gums. Toothaches are not predictable. Sometimes cold helps; sometimes heat helps; sometimes nothing helps. Sometimes they subside during the day and then keep you up at night. Call our office and we will help you as soon as possible.

Some problems that can resemble toothaches: sinusitis (2 or more upper back teeth ache and you can’t tell for sure which one it is), cracked tooth (hurts only when biting a certain way on hard foods), muscle or jaw joint pains from night grinding or clenching, and heart attack (pain goes up to the jaw on either side, but often on the left side).

Relief from toothaches requires examination, usually 1 or more xrays, and possibly some other tests on the teeth and then a diagnosis… in other words, we can’t relieve the pain without knowing what is causing the pain.

If there is swelling, then it is very likely there is a bacterial abcess, which should be attended to asap. Abcesses are unpredictable and, in their worst form, can progress to a life threatening situation (eg. If swelling makes swallowing difficult then it can soon make it hard to breath or if it is by the eye, it can find a way to the brain.) While antibiotics may be part of the treatment for an abcess, removing the source of the infection is mandatory. If the abcess is from a tooth that can be saved, then root canal treatment should be begun. If the tooth is not savable or you elect to not save it, then it should be extracted. If the abcess is in a deep gum pocket then it needs to thoroughly cleansed and/or the associated tooth removed. The sooner the source of infection is dealt with the better, and an examination is needed to evaluate if that can be done immediately or if waiting several days is preferred to allow the antibiotics to take effect.

Until you can come into the office, taking an over-the-counter pain reliever such as Tylenol™ or aspirin or ibuprofen or naproxn may relieve some of the ache. Avoid extreme temperature and sweets as this may aggravate the symptoms. CALL DR. BLOOM IMMEDIATELY – even if the pain goes away, the sooner the problem is treated, the sooner the problem itself will go away.

Don’t extend your suffering… call now! In Chicago at 773-777-3309. We are available to help you with all your urgent and emergency dental needs.

If you don’t have a regular dentist and require an additional visit to complete your treatment, we can do that too! Dr. Bloom maintains a full-service general and cosmetic dentistry practice for comprehensive dental care. Completion of root canals, fillings, crowns, porcelain veneers, teeth whitening, implants, and dentures are all services that Dr. Bloom can provide.

Don’t suffer, call now! In Chicago at 773-777-3309. We are available to help you with all your urgent and emergency dental needs.

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Extractions  Chicago, IL

Extractions

An extraction is performed to remove a tooth, whether because of disease, crowding, or damage. When extractions are required, the area around the tooth will be numbed and your dentist will remove the tooth. A small amount of bleeding is normal, as your mouth will replace the removed tooth root by forming a blood clot in the area.

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Fillings  Chicago, IL

Fillings

Fillings restore teeth after decay is removed. Dr. Bloom is pleased to offer you modern, state-of-the-art fillings that are a natural looking white, contain no metals and can actually strengthen your teeth. Often just the replacement of stained or old fillings with the latest bonding materials can transform your smile.

Fillings can now be virtually invisible thanks to advances in modern restorative materials. These cosmetic materials are either bonding composites or ceramic porcelains.

Composites made of resin and porcelain particles are used to restore your tooth’s function, form, and aesthetics. Composites are an improvement over silver amalgam because they not only look better, but they form a bond with the tooth structure. (This is in comparison to silver amalgam fillings which do no adhere to tooth structure.). Composites can be applied in 1 visit.

Porcelain is the material of choice where more extensive reconstruction of the tooth is required. These restorations are constructed in the dental laboratory and are bonded to the tooth on the second visit.

Dr. Bloom’s 29+ years of extensive dental experience and artistry will provide you with the perfect match to your natural teeth.

If you are interested in learning more about Invisible Fillings, please contact Dr. Bloom’s office today to arrange a no-obligation consultation.

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Night Guards  Chicago, IL

Night Guards

It can be beneficial to use a guard, or covering, to protect your teeth from grinding while sleeping. Similar to how a mouthguard protects teeth during sports, this layer prevents damage to the teeth that can occur naturally.

There are a wide variety of different types of mouthguards, ranging from pre-formed pieces to ones that are custom fitted to your teeth and jaws. Some of these can even be formed at home through a boil-and-bite process.

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Oral Cancer Screenings  Chicago, IL

Oral Cancer Screenings

Nobody wants to hear that they may have oral cancer. Although it can be fatal, it is easier to treat the earlier it is caught. For this reason, we are proud to assist our patients with an oral cancer screening. We want to help our patients survive this often fatal disease.

Oral cancer will typically show up as white or red patches or lesions inside of your mouth. You may even notice the lesions on your tongue or on the floor of your mouth. Many people experience a hard time swallowing, bleeding in the mouth, or even swelling in your face or neck.

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Preventative Dentistry  Chicago, IL

Preventative Dentistry

It is important to brush your teeth at least twice daily to help remove plaque and food particles that get stuck to your teeth. It is recommended that you brush your teeth for two minutes (or longer), though most people rush through this time. You need to make sure that you reach every side of each tooth, including the inside and outside. To help keep your breath fresh, you should also brush your tongue. Then, you can begin flossing.

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Root Canals  Chicago, IL

Root Canals

Root Canal Therapy is the treatment to save a tooth whose nerve tissue is having an irreversible problem. Everybody is aware of a nerve problem when there is pain, but problems with a nerve can be manifested in many different ways. Sometimes there is no pain, but a small pustule erupts near the tooth. Sometimes there is a low ache that comes and goes… sometimes 2-3 times a week, sometimes 2-3 times a day. Sometimes there is no sensation but an x-ray shows the nerve is dead and the problem extended into the bone around the tooth. And sometimes there is severe pain.

There are several common causes of irreversible problems with a tooth’s nerve. The most common is deep decay. Another is a tooth fracture where the nerve is exposed. Also, a tooth can develop a crack deep enough to send ‘shocks’ to the nerve when biting hard but not deep enough to split the tooth. Whatever the cause, when there are irreverible problems with the nerve tissue, there are only two choices: root canal therapy or extraction (and tooth replacement).

Root canal therapy saves the tooth, providing a healthier and ultimately less costly solution to extraction. The procedure involves removing the problem nerve from the canals in the root(s) and then filling the canals with a sealing material. What is left of the tooth is then used as the foundation to restore the tooth to full function.

Root Canal Therapy is highly successful, having about a 95% success rate. Likewise, about 95% of the time, the entire process is uneventful with minimal discomfort. During the treatment, Dr. Bloom will administer local anesthetic to numb the area. He will use a minimum of low-radiation digital x-rays and a nearly silent electric handpiece. You will be watching a movie or concert on video goggles.

The alternative treatment is extraction. If extraction is your choice, then Dr. Bloom can help you choose from several methods to replace the tooth.

Over 29 years experience… For the smile you’ve always wanted, contact Dr. Bloom today.

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Sealants  Chicago, IL

Sealants

When we apply a dental sealant, we paint a plastic coating on top of your teeth. This makes your teeth smooth getting rid of the rough edges, depressions, and grooves that are commonly found on teeth. It is essentially a protective coating against tooth decay and cavities.

The most common place to paint sealants is on back teeth since they are often irregular. They can also be very hard to reach, even if you brush your teeth regularly. We use it more on children though we do perform sealants on adults too!

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Sleep Apnea  Chicago, IL

Sleep Apnea

People who have sleep apnea never get the rest that they deserve. They have trouble breathing which constantly wakes them up throughout the night. Many people who have sleep apnea have multiple health problems. They are always exhausted. Being tired can affect people at home and at work. They may be miserable and have trouble concentrating. Sleep apnea can also affect their blood pressure, making them more likely to have strokes. There is a big risk with anesthesia since they have trouble breathing.

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Sports Mouth Guards  Chicago, IL

Sports Mouth Guards

As dentists, we are determined to make sure your mouth and teeth are well protected during sports activities, no matter what your passion is. To do this, we offer many different types of mouth guards, depending on the types of activities in which you are involved. There are some mouth guards for low-impact sports and others for high-impact sports.

Mouth guards not only protect your mouth and teeth, but also have other purposes. Mouth guards will help decrease the impact if you get hit in the jaw. They have also been shown to increase an athlete’s performance.

Many people clench their teeth while playing, which can give them temporomandibular joint syndrome (TMJ). Clenching your jaw the whole time can be quite exhausting. Mouth guards help to relax your jaw, allowing you to completely focus on the game!

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Teeth Whitening  Chicago, IL

Teeth Whitening

Everybody loves a bright white smile, and there are a variety of products and procedures available to help you improve the look of yours.

Many people are satisfied with the sparkle they get from brushing twice daily with a fluoride-containing toothpaste, cleaning between their teeth once a day and the regular cleanings at the dentist’s office. However, if you decide you would like to go beyond this to make your smile look brighter, Dr. Bloom can help you investigate all of your options.

You can whiten your smile in 1 or 2 appointments with Dr. Bloom, you can use an at-home bleaching system (store-bought or from our dental office), or whitening toothpaste.

What should you ask Dr. Bloom?
Will whitening procedures be effective for you? Speak with Dr. Bloom. He can tell you whether whitening procedures would be effective for you. Whiteners may not correct all types of discoloration. For example, yellow-ish hued teeth will probably bleach well, brownish-colored teeth may bleach less well, and grayish-hued teeth may not bleach well at all. Likewise, bleaching may not enhance your smile if you have had tooth-colored fillings placed in your front teeth. The whitener will not affect the color of these materials, and they will stand out in your newly whitened smile. In these cases, you may want to investigate other options, like porcelain veneers.

What is in-office Bleaching?
If you are a candidate for bleaching, Dr. Bloom may suggest a procedure that can be done in our office. This procedure is called chair-side bleaching and may require more than one office visit. Each visit may take from 60 to 90 minutes.

During chair-side bleaching, Dr. Bloom will apply either a protective gel to your gums or a rubber shield to protect the oral soft tissues. A bleaching agent is then applied to the teeth, and a special light may be used to enhance the action of the agent.

When you sit up in the chair about an hour later, you have a new smile!

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TMJ Treatment  Chicago, IL

TMJ Treatment

TMJ, an abbreviation for the temporomandibular (jaw) joint, is a collection of symptoms that result when your jaw is not aligned properly. When it becomes irritated and inflamed, facial pain, headaches, ear pain and jaw popping can occur. Dr. Bloom can determine if any pain you may have is related to TMJ Disorder after a thorough dental exam.

There are many causes for TMJ Disorders, including stress, injury, and bruxism — the clenching and grinding of your teeth especially while asleep. In most cases, you can get relief through recommended over-the-counter pain relievers, rest and stress reduction techniques. You may need a night guard if you are grinding your teeth while asleep. Bruxism can cause teeth to wear down, or chip or crack, or the bone surrounding the tooth can react to the stress by dissolving away, your fillings or crowns can chip or break. Sometimes the muscles creating the intense grinding develop pain so severe, it is mistaken for migraine headaches.

TMJ can be difficult to diagnose. Dr. Bloom has years of experience and training in detecting the symptoms associated with TMJ. If you, or someone in your family, has had any of the above symptoms, you should schedule an evaluation with Dr. Bloom.

During your appointment, Dr. Bloom will take your complete dental history and then conduct a thorough exam including digital x-rays to see if your symptoms are a result of TMJ. If so, he will develop a treatment plan to relieve stress on the joints, alleviate muscle spasms, and reposition the jaw. These procedures may include physical therapy, re-positioning of your teeth through orthodontics and/or an appliance to be worn in the mouth to help realign the jaw.

Once the pain is eliminated, Dr. Bloom will recommend a treatment that will stabilize the jaw in its correct position to prevent a recurrence of your TMJ symptoms.

Over 29 years experience… For the smile you’ve always wanted, contact Dr. Bloom today.

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Wisdom Teeth Extractions  Chicago, IL

Wisdom Teeth Extractions

Wisdom tooth extractions are not always necessary, but when they are, we are generally able to do the procedure ourselves without referring you to a specialist. The wisdom teeth are also known as ‘third molars’. They are the last tooth in the arch and are the last to appear. Typically they emerge between ages 17 and 34 years. The most common reason for their removal is decay, ie. when people don’t or can’t reach far enough back to brush them clean, they usually decay. In a way, the wisdom teeth are the only ‘expendible’ adult teeth in that their loss does not create a need to replace them. Some people don’t even have them! Yet other people don’t get them because they are “stuck” or “impacted”. There are several reasons to consider removing impacted wisdom teeth and there are several reasons to leave them alone… through x-rays and examination, Dr. Bloom can discuss your options and the pros and cons of each.

When a wisdom tooth has minor decay and is fixable, Dr. Bloom usually suggests fixing it. When there is major decay or pain, then Dr. Bloom usually suggests extraction. As long as the tooth has erupted or partially erupted, then Dr. Bloom usually performs the extraction using local anesthetic. If you require extra stress relief, the doctor offers nitrous oxide (laughing gas). We’ll make you comfortable in the chair — you can even enjoy watching a DVD of your choice while the doctor works. We will send you home with full instructions for self-care after the extraction. Typically there is only minor soreness that subsides over the following few days. Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory/analgesics may be needed during that time.

In some cases after reviewing the x-rays, Dr. Bloom may discuss the need for a referral to an oral surgeon, especially if the extraction would require IV sedation or general anesthetic.

If you have any questions about either you or your child’s wisdom teeth, please call Dr. Bloom’s office for an examination and consultation.

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