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Dispelling the Myths of Ortho

August 16th, 2018

At Forever Smiles, we love what we do- from helping our patients gain confidence through the smile they’ve always wanted, to treating them for issues like sleep disorders and difficulties in breathing. Improving the quality of our patient’s lives is ingrained in all that we do, as is our purpose to “inspire, innovate, create, restore.” What’s more, we like learning and even teaching others about the benefits of good oral health and he role of orthodontics to long-lasting overall health. That’s why we think back to school is the perfect time for Dr. Razdolsky and the Forever Smiles team to set the record straight on six common misconceptions about orthodontic treatment and braces.

#1. Isn’t anyone who provides braces or aligners is an orthodontist?

While some general dentists or online companies offer braces or aligners, only an orthodontist like Dr. Razdolsky who the additional years of advanced training can call themselves an orthodontic specialist. It’s not worth the risk of permanent damage to your face and smile to allow anyone who isn’t an orthodontist to attempt to move your teeth. At Forever Smiles, you’re getting a team of specialists with the skills and experience necessary to ensure your best smile.

#2. Why does it seem that braces are so expensive?

Braces from Forever Smiles means you are getting a unique and fully-customized treatment plan designed to safely straighten your teeth and closely monitor your progress to ensure that your bite is the best that it can be. As a result, the cost can vary from patient to patient and should reflect the complexity of your unique case. From simple cases which only take months to treat, to very difficult ones which may take a couple of years, the benefits of having our team provide your orthodontic care will be well worth it. From our free initial consultation to flexible payment plans, we work with each patient individually to help them achieve a beautiful Forever Smile.

#3. Online companies promise straight teeth with little or no office visit. Does this work?

Heck, no! No visit means no monitoring. How can you be sure treatment is effective if you are not checking in? The reality is that the health of your gums, teeth and jaws cannot be monitored during treatment if you don’t come in regularly. Even the most carefully planned treatments need to be closely monitored to ensure that your treatment stays on course. Dr. Razdolsky and the team check each and every patient to ensure treatment is on schedule. And should a problem arise, they can develop a mid-course treatment correction as needed.

#4. On the internet I read I can have straighter teeth with clear aligners in just 20 months. Is this true?

Orthodontic treatment requires careful, controlled movements of the teeth to ensure they are moving into proper position. What’s more the type of appliance, whether brackets and wires or clear aligners also makes a difference in treatment. From simple cases which may only take a few months, to the more complex which may take longer, Dr. Razdolsky has the expertise to deliver great results in the least amount of time required for your unique case. What’s more, he stays up on the latest developments in the industry so he’s able to develop treatment using all matter of appliances to ensure the best possible care of your Forever Smile. It’s not worth the risk to have someone who is not a qualified orthodontist offer you treatment because of the possible irreversible damage that could occur.

#5. My teeth don’t look so bad. I don’t need braces.

There’s so much more to orthodontic treatment than meets the eye. Improved appearance is the most obvious result, but when teeth and jaws are aligned the function of biting, chewing and speaking are also better. So, a beautiful Forever Smile is not just the visible sign of good oral health, it sets the stage for overall well-being. Orthodontic treatment from Dr. Razdolsky actually plays a larger role in a patient’s healthcare than most people realize.

#6. I read before that orthodontic evaluation should be as early as the age of seven. It must be too late for me.

That’s not true! You are never too old to benefit from orthodontic treatment. We see patients young and old and believe age should never be a factor when it comes to getting a healthy, beautiful Forever Smile. It is important to note however, that adult cases may be a bit more complicated and it may sometimes take a little more time and patience. That’s why it is critical that adult patients only seek treatment from a qualified orthodontist like Dr. Razdolsky. Through his extensive training, expertise and experience he can develop a treatment plan tailored to each patient’s unique situation or needs, and ultimately deliver the best overall result.

Taking a Bite Out of Crime

July 10th, 2018

The science behind the various fields and specialties of dentistry are captivating. Take for example the role forensic dentistry in mainstream television and books with shows such as Bones and CSI Las Vegas, or even the gripping tales of Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes.

Although Sherlock Holmes was a fictional character, to some, the way Doyle vastly contributed to the field of forensics is unquestionable. One of the biggest impacts being the “exchange principle” wherein two things come into contact with one another and one leaves a trace--the ramifications of which is enormous as evidence can last for years, decades and even centuries.

While forensic dentistry, or odontology is a growing area of forensic medicine, it has in fact been part of forensic science for more than 100 years. Its primary function is as the branch of forensic medicine which deals with the proper handling and examination of dental evidence and proper evaluation and presentation of dental findings in the interest of justice.

Let’s observe the case of notorious serial killer Ted Bundy. During an exhaustive man hunt after his escape from jailors in January 1978, Bundy committed his final and most heinous crime. He was recaptured and eventually went on trial for his crimes and the only piece of evidence was a bite mark he left on one of the victims. Having taken casts of his teeth, investigators were able to show that Bundy’s teeth were unevenly aligned and several of them were chipped. Bite marks, like fingerprints are unique and it was through the casts of his teeth, and photographs of the bite marks on the victim, that a forensic odontologist was able to present key evidence instrumental in Bundy’s conviction.

Missing teeth, fractures or malformed teeth, as well as position and angle of the incisors all display unique characteristics which act like the distinct lines of a fingerprint. Whether a visual impression taken from the victim, or physical one found at the crime scene, the science of forensic odontology can be combined with known historical factors when teeth or bite marks are present.

John Wilkes Booth shot President Abraham Lincoln April 14, 1865 and escaped to Virginia where he was surrounded by the US Calvary and shot dead on the spot. For years however, rumors spread that he escaped and was still alive. To disprove naysayers, his body was disinterred in 1893 and reexamined. Booth’s body was positively identified by the family dentist by the peculiar formation of his jaw noted on dental records.

It can be said then that the role of dentistry in revealing evidence which may otherwise go unidentified can be paramount to justice when forensic techniques are employed. In the words of Sherlock Holmes, “There is nothing like first-hand evidence.” Indeed, Mr. Holmes. Indeed.

Beware the perils of Smile Shopping

June 15th, 2018

More and more, you see marketing and advertising for clear aligners with television commercials for straighter smiles by direct mail. And now, some makers are even opening storefronts in shopping centers with promises of an easier, more convenient way to a more beautiful smile. Like shopping for jeans, these purveyors suggest that a new smile is as simple as a trip to the mall. And while technological advancements in treatment with plastics and attachments have made them somewhat more viable in select cases, most industry professionals agree that for superior results, a qualified orthodontic specialist using the right tools and technologies are best.

What these offers fail to make clear is that these types of aligners are not effective in cases where acute tooth movement is needed. In these situations, traditional braces are not only more suitable, but most often the required course of treatment – especially for patients with molar/bite issues and where rotation or vertical movement of canines or premolars is necessary. Additionally, only an orthodontist has the specialized education beyond regular dental school that allows for the proper diagnosis and treatment in the alignment of jaws, facial irregularities and developmental anomalies in the airway that can lead to other health issues. These diagnoses are part and parcel of orthodontic treatment and may be overlooked completely if patients simply look to the quick-fix of online or shopping center teeth aligners. Sadly, in some instances direct-to-consumer companies do not involve an evaluation or supervising treatment by an orthodontic professional.

When determining a course of treatment for patients, Dr. Razdolsky stresses the importance of how addressing each patient as a unique case is paramount to success and a true Forever Smile. A thorough oral and facial examination, photographs, dental molds and/or x-rays, and possibly even CBCT scans are necessary to the assessment and proper recommendation for a patient treatment program. Dr. Razdolsky’s specialized training and first-hand experience with new and emerging technologies allows him to evaluate the collected data and develop the right course of treatment for the patients’ needs, rather than form-fitting a patient to a one-size-fits-all approach. Dr. Razdolsky said he has even had patients come in and seek re-treatment because the aligners prescribed by their dentist were not effective. More often this is a case of improper evaluation, planning or the wrong tool being prescribed for treatment.

“We see our patients as partners throughout the course of treatment,” said Dr. Razdolsky. “Success is critically dependent on our continued evaluation and their active role in proper daily maintenance and care of their braces, retainers or appliances. Although we always strive to provide for the happiness and wellbeing of all our patients, sometimes their preferred course treatment alone is not best.”

With traditional braces, you wear them all the time which allows for a more consistent, controlled and successful treatment. Treatment with clear aligners can often take much longer because changes are much more subtle and the trays are removable. This means patients have a tendency to wear them less, or forget to wear them at all at times, and therefore treatment gets drawn out. Without proper and ongoing observation by a qualified professional, these treatments become ineffective and can sometimes prolong issues.

“There are many factors in determining the best course of treatment,” said Dr. Razdolsky. “We work with the patient and the family to get from point ‘A’ to point ‘B’ by the least obstructive and most efficient means available to us. Whether traditional brackets and wires or clear aligners, as an Orthodontist I look at all the latest options, tools and technologies accessible to get us where we need to go. That’s the difference between Orthodontics and online or in-store aligners – there’s usually no one, clear answer or quick fix to a beautiful Forever Smile.”

2018 Artishock Contest

May 17th, 2018

Dr. Yan Razdolsky, Anna and the entire Forever Smiles team are proud to present… the 2018 Artishock Art Contest entries! Showcased in our waiting area, these works of art are the students of Artishock Art Studio’s depiction of this years’ theme, “Smile around the world.” The goal of this awesome contest is to encourage students to reflect on the happy things in life and through the use of creative expression and self-awareness, create an entry that expresses their feelings about the things that make them smile.

Forever Smiles sponsors this annual competition to provide exposure to the talented kids of Artishock. Students ages seven and up submitted their drawings and paintings that describe their understanding of the world, what they think, their dreams, environment, family and friends, and things of importance to their lives. Like the Artishock philosophy, this contest fosters a lively discourse stimulating children’s natural wonder and curiosity in the more formal foundations of color, shape, line, texture, space and composition.

Similarly, Forever Smiles believes it is critical to develop a fun and nurturing environment for our patients - helping them to learn, grow and share ideas that make them a part of their community. This Artishock contest is great because it puts kids and their observations of the world around them front and center, as well as introduces them to concepts and elements of art in the environment.

Honored to host this contest for six years, Forever Smiles has awarded several scholarships and art supplies prizes to winning students. In addition to showcasing the more than 125 original works from Artishock students, we also sponsor the annual Artishock Art Show where these prizes are awarded.

Entries are judged by you and we need your vote! The top two pieces with the most votes in each category win art scholarships and supplies. Voting is going on now in our reception area and on our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ForeverSmilesIL/. Vote today!

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