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Referrals appreciated! End of year approaching. Parking.

Thursday, October 5th, 2017

This email was just sent by Dr. Dave to our practice’s email subscriber list:

 

Hi,

I hope all is well.

Surprisingly, the end of the year is approaching. Now is a good time to improve your smile or get caught up and maximize your insurance benefits and use any remaining flex account dollars you may have. We always provide the best treatment and, until the end of the year, we will also reduce your costs for major treatment. Call Karen for more information.

Our building is undergoing maintenance. This has affected our parking. The Oakton entrance to our parking may be blocked at times. If so, access from the alley may be open. The 3 spaces across from the windows on the side of our office are reserved for you & our other guests.

Being of help to you is the reason I am a dentist. If you ever need me urgently, call me or text me at 847-906-3202. I would like to be busier and would appreciate referrals to my office now.

It is always nice to see you.

I wish you the best always!

Sincerely,
Dr. Dave

Beware of bargains in parachutes, life jackets and dental care!

Friday, May 1st, 2015

Dental care is like many other projects that we are involved with regularly. All of us need dental care [and often dental treatment] on a regular basis. If we are concerned with good health in general, we visit our oral health care provider at least annually. When considering who is going to provide this health care, we should all be careful. There are many ways to provide dental care and a wide variety of materials and techniques are used to provide this care.

If the best materials and techniques are not used when making parachutes, life jackets or providing dental treatment; the results may not be what the user would like them to be! It is very obvious why you wouldn’t want the cheapest life preserver or parachute, but much less obvious why you wouldn’t want the least expensive dental care available.

At “Smiles of Skokie” Dr. Dave and his Team carefully select and use the best, most cost effective, longest lasting, materials and techniques to provide the best treatment at the most reasonable cost possible. Your Team at our office is constantly taking courses and upgrading materials and techniques to offer our “Dental Family” the best treatment and value available.

Recently we noticed that some of our stock of material, which is still good, wasn’t being used. We discussed this and agreed that we would rather dispose of it than use it for patient treatment when an improved material is available which will work better for our patients now.

We have also been restoring implants without using cement to hold the crowns and bridges in place on the implants for awhile now. There is recent research which shows that in spite of extreme care on the part of the doctor, some minimal cement residue could affect the long term health of the dental implant in some cases. Dr. Dave decided that we will no longer place any implant restorations with cement due to this research. Our implant restorations are extremely successful long term but we want them to be the best possible! [There are advertising, group dental implant “mill” offices which not surprisingly show some questionable results. Be careful!]

We routinely use 2 different types of filling materials when placing white fillings in the back teeth. We are then able to use a material in between the teeth which absorbs & releases fluoride to help prevent decay in this decay prone area; and a stronger, more wear resistant filling material for the chewing surface. This results in the best filling possible. [Is a reduced fee dental office going to go through these extra steps? Will their fillings last as long?]

Our long term, fixed in place, crowns and bridges are when finished, ALWAYS placed with resin bonding material. Many other offices use cements which will leak away in as little as 5 years which can lead to decay under these crowns & bridges or loss of them. The resin bonding material we use has been tested carefully and according to research results, won’t show any significant “wash out” for 3 generations! The resin bonding material is more difficult to work with but we think it is worth using, don’t you?

We also use the best, most cost effective, labs we can find. This results in better, more consistent and comfortable results for you!

Our fees may not be the lowest but our care is among the best available. [Ask friends or relatives, who see another dentist, what their costs are for oral care and ours will usually be less for the same procedures in spite of our higher quality results.] If we were to become a contract provider for dental plans, we wouldn’t be able to provide the quality we must provide for our “Dental Family”. Contract providers are forced to follow a reduced fee schedule which means something has to give somewhere and that is usually reduced quality of care which the patient usually can’t see. We promise to do the best we can for you at the most cost effective fees possible!

Oral health has been shown to greatly influence your general health and well being. Shop elsewhere for bargains if you need to, but invest carefully in your long term dental health!

Our holiday gift to our Dental Family members starts now.

Saturday, November 2nd, 2013

This letter is being mailed now. It applies to you if we can help you with your oral health as well as our current Dental Family members.

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November, 2013

 Dear Members of our Dental Family,

Your health, appearance and comfort are the reasons our practice exists. We are proud to be your oral health specialists. You deserve high quality dental care at reasonable fees. Our goal is to keep you as healthy as possible and have your smile looking great by making what you need as easy for you as possible.

The approaching holiday season is a time for giving and receiving. As our gift to you, any newly scheduled treatment done from now until the end of the year will be done at a 10% discount to you.

These reduced fees will be extended to any friend or relative you refer to our office during the holiday season. This is in addition to the $25 credit you may use toward any future treatment with each new patient you refer to our office. You are very important to us and deserve the highest quality dental care at a good value.

We are your health care advocates. As stated in an earlier note to you, if you have dental insurance or a designated health savings account, we would like to help you maximize both your benefits, your appearance and your health. Each year you may be allowed a fixed dollar amount to use for health care. These benefits do not carry over from year to year, so if any of it is not used by the end of the year, those unused dollars are gone forever.

If you have referred friends or family to us for their care recently, we appreciate this very much. If you haven’t, please do so. We need this support.

Please, call Karen to schedule an appointment at your earliest convenience. Spaces are limited and we want to ensure we are able to accommodate everyone. We look forward to helping you and those you care about always.

We wish you and yours a happy and healthy holiday season.

Sincerely,

Dr. Dave McWhinnie and Team

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We have a wonderful team at our office. It is even better than it was due to the addition of Karen to our team. Karen is a true expert in helping you get the most out of your dental benefits. She is truly a dental benefits expert!

We look forward to seeing you. It truly is a pleasure and an honor to help you with your dental health!

Dr. Dave

 

Sunday morning benefit bike ride for our wounded veterans

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

Please join us! This is a 30 mile bike ride. There are also 5k and 10k runs as part of this event. There is a “Smiles of Skokie” team and by joining our team you will save on the cost of registration.

http://honorridebarrington.com/

It is open to all. Please bring friends and support this great cause.

Dr. Dave looks forward to seeing you there!

Dental Implants are the best, when done carefully.

Monday, September 16th, 2013

I have been helping people like you successfully replace missing teeth with implants for years [20+ years!]. Implants are considered to be the best way to replace teeth which are important to maintaining your appearance and function. They work well to allow for non-removable replacements which most of our clients report they cannot tell are any different from their natural teeth. They can also be wonderful supports for removable teeth replacements.

Within the last few days we placed 3 implant restorations for a wonderful lady. She previously had a removable bridge [“partial denture”] which was a food trap, as they invariably are, for anyone needing these types of restorations. Removable bridges are less expensive than implants but much more tedious to maintain and not nearly as long lasting as implant restorations.

Dental implant restorations can last as long as you may live. When placing permanent restorations, I place them with the longest lasting cement [which is plastic resin based], so that my restorations almost never come loose. The cements I use will last 2 to 3 lifetimes according to scientific research. My typical statement to a member of our Dental Family when delivering a bonded, permanent restoration is that I am planning on this person living to 150 years of age and this restoration lasting all of that time with no more treatment needed. This type of cement is a little more difficult to work with but I use it all of the time because it provides the best benefit.

Implant restorations are unique in that they are more solidly affixed to the bone than teeth are. Dental implants actually protect weaker teeth near them by being so solid. Dental implant restorations need to be maintained carefully and placed very carefully also. When placed carefully and in place for 18 months, implants will last pretty much indefinitely. However, if a the dental implant recipient grinds their teeth [if so, then a nightguard is recommended always!] or doesn’t come in for dental exams and evaluations regularly, the bite can become uneven and then dental implants can be eventually lost. Dental implants don’t tolerate biting on inclines [uneven or bite interferences] nearly as well as natural teeth. The bite needs to be checked on implant restored replacement teeth regularly or they can be unexpectedly lost. If you have an implant and the gum around it is sensitive then have it checked at your earliest convenience, within a week or so. Don’t delay having an implant restoration checked at your earliest convenience if you suspect a problem which lasts more than a week or so.

Dental implants also have more of a tendency to be food traps than natural teeth if not restored properly. I almost exclusively use custom crown supports for implant restorations. [Some implant restorations don’t need these, but this is rare. If a custom abutment is not needed, we reduce the cost for our Dental Family member.] There are major practice groups which advertise regularly which don’t use custom supports [custom abutments]. We have seen a number of these which are causing problems for newer dental family members of ours. There is no easy remedy for this. The restorations need to be replaced to solve this problem. The implants are generally fine, however, if they are restored properly in time. The cost of these “implant factory” services are usually more expensive than what the total charges are for our more effective and comfortable implant restoration services.

Implant restorations must be delivered carefully also. Cement at the gum line can cause gum disease around a dental implant and even loss of the implant. We use custom abutments and very carefully clean around the implant restorations as we deliver them to minimize the chance of this occurring.

Just as with almost everything else, it pays to do some investigation and be careful when choosing to buy dental implant services. Don’t go by price or advertising alone. We are here to help you and will serve you with the best materials and techniques available.

Dr. Dave

For those with a sweet tooth, young children or dry mouth.

Monday, September 2nd, 2013

I recently saw a photo of the young son of a member of our Dental Family who was “caddying” for his father for free. He is about 4 years old and the subject came up of how to compensate him for his efforts. It occurred to me that xylitol containing candy would be a great way to do this.

Another patient of ours has been doing well with her oral hygiene on a daily basis and came into the office recently and had a few cavities which needed filling. After talking to her, she told me that she was recently having a dry mouth and sucking on sugar containing lozenges. She was immediately told to switch to xylitol containing lozenges. This was also a problem for another patient about a year ago.

Xylitol is a naturally occurring sweetener which does not contribute to decay. Until recently it was actually thought to help prevent decay but recent research has shown that it is not very effective in this regard.

Please use xylitol sweetened lozenges and chewing gum if you are using either of these on a regular basis. You will have much less trouble with your teeth.

Great Safety Tip!

Wednesday, January 23rd, 2013

This is something I never thought of but it is a great idea. It doesn’t have anything to do directly with oral health.

It was sent to me by my friend and a member of our “Dental Family”, Karen Gatherer. Thanks, Karen!

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What to take to bed with you – not a joke.
Pretty neat idea. Never thought of it before.

Put your car keys beside your bed at night.

Tell your spouse, your children, your neighbors, your parents, your Dr’s office, the check-out girl at the market, everyone you run across. Put your car keys beside your bed at night.

If you hear a noise outside your home or someone trying to get in your house, just press the panic button for your car. The alarm will be set off, and the horn will continue to sound until either you turn it off or the car battery dies.

This tip came from a neighborhood watch coordinator. Next time you come home for the night and you start to put your keys away, think of this: It’s a security alarm system that you probably already have and requires no installation. Test it. It will go off from most everywhere inside your house and will keep honking until your battery runs down or until you reset it with the button on the key fob chain. It works if you park in your driveway or garage.

If your car alarm goes off when someone is trying to break into your house, odds are the burglar/rapist won’t stick around. After a few seconds, all the neighbors will be looking out their windows to see who is out there and sure enough the criminal won’t want that. And remember to carry your keys while walking to your car in a parking lot. The alarm can work the same way there. This is something that should really be shared with everyone. Maybe it could save a life or a sexual abuse crime.

P.S. I am sending this to everyone I know because I think it is fantastic. Would also be useful for any emergency, such as a heart attack, where you can’t reach a phone. My Mom has suggested to my Dad that he carry his car keys with him in case he falls outside and she doesn’t hear him. He can activate the car alarm and then she’ll know there’s a problem.

Please pass this on even IF you’ve read it before. It’s a reminder.

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What do you think of this?

Please share it with your friends!

Sleep Problems? Medicine & Dentistry team up to help.

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

If you have a problem with sleep and have had medical treatment for that problem, or have not yet had any help with it, dental devices can be used to make your medical management of sleep problems much easier and more effective. I have been working with a number of physicians to help patients with sleep problems. I have had some patients come to me from outside of my practice for dental help with their problem and others already in our ‘dental family’ who I have referred to an MD for sleep problems. Patients needing dental help for a medical problem always need to see a physician who will then prescribe a dental, “Mandibular Advancement Device” if needed. This is a medical problem which can be helped via a dental device.

The best treatment for sleep problems is now trending toward a multidisciplinary approach. CPAP devices and dental devices can work together to manage a sleep problem much better than either device can when used alone.

I am going to be more attuned to these problems in the future. There are studies which show that 15-20% of accidents while driving on our roads are due to sleep deprivation affecting driving skills. Many medical problems are related to sleep deprivation and are more severe in those of us who don’t sleep well.

Good sleep is essential to good health.

If you, a friend or a loved one is having a sleep problem, please get help. I would be happy to do a screening and give my opinion as to whether a referral to a medical sleep specialist might be a good idea. Children can have sleep problems also.

Dr. Dave McWhinnie

Flossing made easier.

Monday, October 22nd, 2012

Flossing can be challenging but fortunately practice and some aids may make all of the difference for you. I particularly like the bent ‘Y’ type of floss handle which can make flossing the back teeth in particular much easier. If you want to use this device [we have them at our office for purchase], please follow the directions. The floss should only wrap around the button one time before threading it across the Y fork and then several times after it is across the fork.

One caution though, try to avoid pressing the gum in between the teeth down on the bottom teeth and up on the upper teeth with bulky between the teeth brushes. The gum can be flattened too much and, if the gum doesn’t fill the spaces between the teeth well, then you are likely to have food fill those spaces. Food collecting between the teeth is not good. Let me know what you think of the following link.

http://www.sharecare.com/question/options-having-trouble-dental-floss#cmpid=twoh001

My best to you and yours always!

Dr. Dave

Implant restorations need to be done properly

Wednesday, October 10th, 2012

Last night I attended a meeting of the North Suburban Branch of the Chicago Dental Society of which I am a member. The presenter was Dr. M. Nader Sharifi. He is a specialist in restorative dentistry or prosthodontics. He is a well respected lecturer, who is well recognized and has given about 400 continuing education lectures to dentists.

His topic was restoring implants. His conclusions match mine. All of us want to have the restorations we place work as well as possible for the patient, long term. When placing restorations, my usual goal is to design the restoration and everything that goes with it to last until the patient is at least 150 years old or, in other words, as long as possible. With this goal in mind, we want everything to be just right with the restoration.

His primary topic involved the 2 basic types of abutments [foundations] for implant restorations. One is the standard, or prefabricated abutment, and the other is a custom abutment which is made individually for each patient and tooth.

The standard abutment is meant to be a universal, lower cost foundation which works for many different situations.  Unfortunately it usually doesn’t allow for the fit of a crown or bridge to be ideal. The contours of the resulting completed restoration can and do usually allow for more food traps in the area. The cement edges are usually difficult to completely clean which leads to gum irritation and in some cases failure of the implant.

A custom abutment [foundation] allows for the least amount of food entrapment as well as cement margins which can be cleaned well when placing crowns and bridges, and over the long term by the patient.  The result is a more comfortable and trouble free restoration for you, the patient.

I use custom abutments whenever it is better for the patient. I also discuss these options with the patient when necessary.

Dr. Dave McWhinnie

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