John J. Kelly, DDS Your Smile | Your Health Wed, Apr 3, 2024
John J. Kelly, DDS Apr 3, 2024

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Chicago, IL 60646
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FOR GREAT SMILES!

Call us today at  
773-631-6844
 

EASY TO FIND!

5350 West Devon Avenue
Chicago, IL 60646
Get details!

EASY TO FIND!

5350 West Devon Avenue
Chicago, IL 60646
Get details!

FOR GREAT SMILES

Request a visit online or
Call 773.631.6844
Do it today!

WE’RE EASY TO FIND!

5350 W. Devon Av.
Chicago, IL 60646
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IN THIS ISSUE

Patching Up Leukoplakia: “What’d You Call It?”

Patching Up Leukoplakia: “What’d You Call It?”

Set the scene: You bolt out of bed to get ready for your first Zoom call. In the bathroom, you manage a glance at yourself in the mirror. Opening your mouth to see how white (or yellow) your teeth are going to look on camera, you notice a thick, white/greyish patch...

read more
Patching Up Leukoplakia: “What’d You Call It?”

Patching Up Leukoplakia: “What’d You Call It?”

Set the scene: You bolt out of bed to get ready for your first Zoom call. In the bathroom, you manage a glance at yourself in the mirror. Opening your mouth to see how white (or yellow) your teeth are going to look on camera, you notice a thick, white/greyish patch...

read more
The Hidden Dangers of Gum Disease

The Hidden Dangers of Gum Disease

Chances are you’ve at least heard about gum disease and you know that it’s something that you don’t want in your mouth. What you may not realize, however, is just how much gum disease can put your general health at risk.

read more
Why Tongue-Cleaning Is No Gag!

Why Tongue-Cleaning Is No Gag!

If you care about the health of your mouth, there’s one more thing you probably could be doing that you don’t – cleaning your tongue. Check out this important step for better breath, healthier teeth and gums and more!

read more
The Hidden Dangers of Gum Disease

The Hidden Dangers of Gum Disease

Chances are you’ve at least heard about gum disease and you know that it’s something that you don’t want in your mouth. What you may not realize, however, is just how much gum disease can put your general health at risk.

read more
Why Tongue-Cleaning Is No Gag!

Why Tongue-Cleaning Is No Gag!

If you care about the health of your mouth, there’s one more thing you probably could be doing that you don’t – cleaning your tongue. Check out this important step for better breath, healthier teeth and gums and more!

read more

our little video

More Good Stuff

The Rub With Jaw Discomfort – How To Make It Go Away

The Rub With Jaw Discomfort – How To Make It Go Away

You’re on your dream vacation in Paris. Suddenly, a nagging pain in your jaw turns a great day into a miserable one. What’s the source of this pain? Could be your TMJ!

Here’s what we can tell you about TMJ pain, and what to do if you’ve been diagnosed.

What’s a TMJ, exactly?

TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint. This is the joint that connects your jaw to your head. You use this joint any time you speak or eat. Because your jaw is able to move up and down and side to side, your temporomandibular joint has evolved into a complex machine – a critical meeting point of bone, nerve and muscle. Needless to say, the TMJ can get out of joint (forgive the pun) very easily.

An estimated 4.8 percent of U.S. adults (11.2 to 12.4 million people) had pain in the region of the temporomandibular joint that could be related to TMDs.

Temporomandibular Disorders: Priorities for Research and Care
Bond et al. – The National Academies Press – 2020

TMJ disorder typically expresses with one particular sensation – pain. Symptoms could also include difficulty chewing as well as pain in other parts of the face, such as around the ears. Sometimes, TMJ disorders can cause a patient’s jaw to make a popping or clicking sound. In some cases, it can even cause a patient’s jaw to lock up.

What Causes It?

There are many reasons for TMJ pain. Some of the most common include stress, arthritis, injuries to the mouth and face, and bruxism (teeth grinding). Researchers aren’t sure why, but more women experience TMJ disorders than men. There is also some evidence that TMJ problems may be genetic.

How Are TMJ Disorders Treated?

The causes of TMJ pain are so varied, the field of possible treatments is wide open. For patients with mild TMJ disorders, self-care can usually minimize symptoms. Eating softer foods, applying ice, not chewing gum, taking over-the-counter pain relief, and performing simple jaw exercises, at least temporarily, are often recommended. Try to reduce the amount of stress in your life, which in turn should reduce teeth grinding or other habits causing the pain. Become aware of neurotic habits or ticks, such as moving your jaw from side to side.

In the case of teeth grinding, your dentist may prescribe a mouth guard for you to wear at night. In some serious cases, surgery may be recommended.

What definitely to do…

When and if jaw pain, jaw stiffness or other symptoms appear, it’s worth mentioning to your dentist on your next visit. And keep researching the issue on the Web – you never know what you’ll find.

Age-Related Tooth Loss — Why, Why, Why?

Age-Related Tooth Loss — Why, Why, Why?

The CDC says, 13% of Americans between 65 and 74 are toothless. The percentage is even higher after the age of 74 — so what’s the most probable reason for so many people walking around without their chompers?

read more
Smile Again! The Benefits of Full Arch Implants

Smile Again! The Benefits of Full Arch Implants


Dental implants changed the landscape of dental care, enabling many people to improve their confidence and lifestyle.

What is more, implants can last significantly longer than other solutions for the same issue, and this has made them even more desirable to patients.

While dental implants are more commonly used for replacing one tooth, you will be facing a different kind of problem if you’re looking for replacements for multiple teeth. There are many people who have lost most or all their teeth, and putting in implants for each of the missing teeth isn’t always feasible.

This is where full-arch dental implants have proven so useful.

Better Stability and Support

People who’ve lost most or all of the teeth on one or both jaws often rely on dentures. However, the only thing that keeps the dentures in place is the structure and shape of the mouth, and some adhesive, of course.

This is why dentures are known to shift in the mouth or slip out from time to time. This can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. By contrast, full arch implants are supported by titanium posts that keep them in place much more effectively. In other words, if cared for properly, they’re not going anywhere…

Comfort

It’s hard for those with dentures to perform certain activities comfortably, whether it’s chewing on something a little tougher, or even speaking.

With full-arch implants, however, chewing feels a lot like it did with natural teeth. This can greatly improve the quality of life of the wearer.

Better for Your Jaw

Some people may not realize, the part of the jaw that once secured a tooth can degrade once the tooth is gone. Full-arch implants connect to the jawbone in a manner similar to natural teeth and can potentially keeps the jaw bone from degrading at the points of connection.

Value for Money

As with regular implants, full-arch implants cost significantly more than solutions such as dentures. However dentures require replacement on a fairly regular basis. This means that in the long run, the cost of dentures could be significant. When you factor in the ill-fitting nature of dentures and other inconveniences, full-arch implants start to seem well worth the investment.

Convenience

Beyond replacement, dentures need to be removed for frequent cleaning — but taking care of full-arch implants is similar to what you’d do with natural teeth, such as brushing and flossing.

If you’re facing a choice between dentures or full arch implants, the best thing you can do is consult with us. This is a big decision, so a dental professional can help walk you through both options and what they might mean for you. Happy chewing…

Why Expecting A Newborn Means More Dental Attention…

Why Expecting A Newborn Means More Dental Attention…

Pregnancy is a busy time, but for your mouth, it can be a dangerous one. Hormonal changes in your body can leave your oral health, and your overall health, at risk.

Women are more likely to get gingivitis when they are pregnant, an infection of the gums that can lead to swelling. Bleeding may also occur while brushing and flossing your teeth. Without treatment, it can affect the tissues that keep your teeth in their proper position. To make sure gingivitis does not affect you, your dentist may recommend visits more than once during your pregnancy.

In addition to gingivitis, tiny lumps on the surface of your gums may also appear, and these can bleed easily. They are often called “pregnancy tumors,” but they are not dangerous and usually disappear after your child is born.


Check out this great video about Pregnancy and Newborn Oral Health from the American Dental Association!


Crucial Dental Care

Visit your dentist during pregnancy. Make sure your dentist knows that you are pregnant and report changes in your oral condition to them. If you are taking any medications or supplements, let them know this as well.

If your dentist is to prescribe medication as part of more extensive treatment, he or she will avoid drugs considered unsafe for pregnant women. By example, penicillin or amoxicillin may be safe, but tetracycline can stain the fetus’ teeth permanently and will not be used.

At times it may be very important to obtain an x-ray of your teeth for treatment during pregnancy. This may cause concern, however, your dentist will protect you with a special apron for your abdomen, and a thyroid collar. Discuss this thoroughly with your dentist to allay any fears you may have.

Take care of your own teeth!

Brush While Your Pregnant

Cavities and gum disease can cause you to go to the dentist for treatment more than you have to. Brush your teeth carefully two times daily with fluoride toothpaste. Don’t forget to clean between teeth with floss or other method. It is best to ask your dentist or hygienist the best way to do this correctly.

You are what you eat.

Avoid sugary, high-carb snacks that can cling to teeth, cause bacterial plaque and other problems. Bacteria have the ability to convert sugars and starches to acids which can eat away at tooth enamel. The best way to prevent this is to say “no” to the wrong foods. It’s better for your baby, too!

Oral health affects the entire body.

Our oral health is an important part of your overall health, and untreated dental disease can be harmful to you and your baby. Be sure to include your oral health in your daily self-care routine and keep your dentist informed of any changes in your oral health during pregnancy.

John J. Kelly, DDS

It's Wednesday 12:31 AMWe’re currently closed, but please do contact us online, or leave a message. Thank you!

Monday8:00 AM — 5:00 PM
Tuesday8:00 AM — 5:00 PM
Wednesday7:00 AM — 4:00 PM
Thursday7:00 AM — 4:00 PM
FridayClosed
SaturdayClosed
SundayClosed

Chicago dentist, John J. Kelly, DDS, practices Restorative and Cosmetic Dentistry at his Chicago dental office in Edgebrook.

 MORE ON DR. KELLY

Why Tongue-Cleaning Is No Gag!

Why Tongue-Cleaning Is No Gag!

So you brush, you floss and you see your dentist every six months – you think you’re on your best behavior for protecting your teeth but …

Consider the other part of your mouth that could cause trouble if you don’t also keep it clean. We’re speaking of the part known as your tongue. Keeping this kindly beast clean can actually help you stay healthier and fresher smelling (in your mouth, that is) over the long haul.

Why it’s good to clean your tongue

1. The tongue’s important — its surface is like the surface of, say, a coral reef – filled with small tubers (in the case of the tongue, they’re called papillae) that give you the sense of taste and texture when you eat or drink or put something you shouldn’t into your mouth.

2. Bad bacteria afoot — The tongue can foster a goodly number of bacteria. Granted, not all bacteria in the body is bad for you (in fact, most are good) but certain bacteria species can lead to tooth decay, gum infections and bad breath (halitosis). Plaque is a form of this, as you probably know, which creates a biofilm that coats your teeth, leading to cavities.

3. Flotsam — On top of this, the tongue often carries food residue and dead cells that can wreak havoc in your mouth, if not removed. Properly cleaning your tongue will prevent much of this trouble and keep your mouth healthy (and healthy-smelling!). Indeed, research shows that cleaning the tongue can clear bacteria and improve bad breath more than brushing alone.

4. Good taste — Research indicates that cleaning your tongue can actually improve your sense of taste. When you scrape or clean the surface of the tongue, it’s almost the same as starting with a whole new palette! After properly cleaning your tongue for a couple of weeks, see if you’ll notice stronger flavors the next time you eat!

5. Bigger problems — Cleaning your tongue gives you an opportunity to examine it for signs of something wrong – if you see a white, black or red discoloration – or ongoing sores, wounds or pain, make an appointment and consult your dentist (us) for further investigation – don’t let it go for too long!

Cleaning your tongue the right way

Now if the idea of reaching in there and cleaning/scraping your tongue makes you want to gag, don’t worry – it’s not as uncomfortable as you might think, especially as you get used to it — trust us, the benefits outweigh the time and effort.

Method 1 – Brushing – So you brush your teeth twice a day, do you? While you’re at it, use your trusty toothbrush to gently clean your tongue with a small dab of toothpaste. It’s like you’re cleaning your carpet – only a lot more often (and a lot smaller area than a carpet).

 Method 2 – Tongue Scraping – Tongue scrapers are made of plastic, copper or stainless steel and are available at most pharmacies, usually for under $10.

Brush your teeth, floss and rinse as usual. Then, stick out your tongue and gently press and hold the scraper once or twice along the entire surface, starting at the back of the tongue and scraping forward. Apply enough pressure as you see fit to get it to work. After each pass, rinse the scraper with warm water and then rinse your mouth with water. Ahhh…

A Clean Scrape

Tongue scraping or tongue brushing just might be the answer to problems like bad breath, cavity prevention, gum disease prevention — plus, it will make you more aware of what’s going on inside your mouth.

If you want further advice on cleaning your tongue, ask us!

The Rub With Jaw Discomfort – How To Make It Go Away

The Rub With Jaw Discomfort – How To Make It Go Away

You’re on your dream vacation in Paris. Suddenly, a nagging pain in your jaw turns a great day into a miserable one. What’s the source of this pain? Could be your TMJ!

Here’s what we can tell you about TMJ pain, and what to do if you’ve been diagnosed.

What’s a TMJ, exactly?

TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint. This is the joint that connects your jaw to your head. You use this joint any time you speak or eat. Because your jaw is able to move up and down and side to side, your temporomandibular joint has evolved into a complex machine – a critical meeting point of bone, nerve and muscle. Needless to say, the TMJ can get out of joint (forgive the pun) very easily.

An estimated 4.8 percent of U.S. adults (11.2 to 12.4 million people) had pain in the region of the temporomandibular joint that could be related to TMDs.

Temporomandibular Disorders: Priorities for Research and Care
Bond et al. – The National Academies Press – 2020

TMJ disorder typically expresses with one particular sensation – pain. Symptoms could also include difficulty chewing as well as pain in other parts of the face, such as around the ears. Sometimes, TMJ disorders can cause a patient’s jaw to make a popping or clicking sound. In some cases, it can even cause a patient’s jaw to lock up.

What Causes It?

There are many reasons for TMJ pain. Some of the most common include stress, arthritis, injuries to the mouth and face, and bruxism (teeth grinding). Researchers aren’t sure why, but more women experience TMJ disorders than men. There is also some evidence that TMJ problems may be genetic.

How Are TMJ Disorders Treated?

The causes of TMJ pain are so varied, the field of possible treatments is wide open. For patients with mild TMJ disorders, self-care can usually minimize symptoms. Eating softer foods, applying ice, not chewing gum, taking over-the-counter pain relief, and performing simple jaw exercises, at least temporarily, are often recommended. Try to reduce the amount of stress in your life, which in turn should reduce teeth grinding or other habits causing the pain. Become aware of neurotic habits or ticks, such as moving your jaw from side to side.

In the case of teeth grinding, your dentist may prescribe a mouth guard for you to wear at night. In some serious cases, surgery may be recommended.

What definitely to do…

When and if jaw pain, jaw stiffness or other symptoms appear, it’s worth mentioning to your dentist on your next visit. And keep researching the issue on the Web – you never know what you’ll find.

Age-Related Tooth Loss — Why, Why, Why?

Age-Related Tooth Loss — Why, Why, Why?

The CDC says, 13% of Americans between 65 and 74 are toothless. The percentage is even higher after the age of 74 — so what’s the most probable reason for so many people walking around without their chompers?

read more
Smile Again! The Benefits of Full Arch Implants

Smile Again! The Benefits of Full Arch Implants

If you require replacement of several teeth, dentures used to be the only solution. Now, many dental patients are opting for full arch implants. Discover how this wonderful dental technique that can leaving you smiling again!

read more

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TIMES TO SMILE

John J. Kelly, DDS

It's Wednesday 12:31 AMWe’re currently closed, but please do contact us online, or leave a message. Thank you!

Monday8:00 AM — 5:00 PM
Tuesday8:00 AM — 5:00 PM
Wednesday7:00 AM — 4:00 PM
Thursday7:00 AM — 4:00 PM
FridayClosed
SaturdayClosed
SundayClosed

PATIENT CORNER

MEET DR. JOHN J. KELLY

Chicago dentist, John J. Kelly, DDS, practices Restorative and Cosmetic Dentistry at his Chicago dental office in Edgebrook.

He delivers a wide range of dental therapeutics, in addition to treatment of Sleep Disordered Breathing, including Sleep Apnea, Child Facial Development issues and TMJ/Jaw Pain. MORE ON DR. KELLY

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