Posts for: April, 2017

By Richard H. Lestz DDS, PC
April 26, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures

Magician Michael Grandinetti mystifies and astonishes audiences with his sleight of hand and mastery of illusion. But when he initially steps onto the stage, it’s his smile that grabs the attention. “The first thing… that an audience notices is your smile; it’s what really connects you as a person to them,” Michael told an interviewer.

He attributes his audience-pleasing smile to several years of orthodontic treatment as a teenager to straighten misaligned teeth, plus a lifetime of good oral care. “I’m so thankful that I did it,” he said about wearing orthodontic braces. “It was so beneficial. And… looking at the path I’ve chosen, it was life-changing.”

Orthodontics — the dental subspecialty focused on treating malocclusions (literally “bad bites”) — can indeed make life-changing improvements. Properly positioned teeth are integral to the aesthetics of any smile, and a smile that’s pleasing to look at boosts confidence and self-esteem and makes a terrific first impression. Studies have even linked having an attractive smile with greater professional success.

There can also be functional benefits such as improved biting/chewing and speech, and reduced strain on jaw muscles and joints. Additionally, well-aligned teeth are easier to clean and less likely to trap food particles that can lead to decay.

The Science Behind the Magic

There are more options than ever for correcting bites, but all capitalize on the fact that teeth are suspended in individual jawbone sockets by elastic periodontal ligaments that enable them to move. Orthodontic appliances (commonly called braces or clear aligners) place light, controlled forces on teeth in a calculated fashion to move them into their new desired alignment.

The “gold standard” in orthodontic treatment remains the orthodontic band for posterior (back) teeth and the bonded bracket for front teeth. Thin, flexible wires threaded through the brackets create the light forces needed for repositioning. Traditionally the brackets have been made of metal, but for those concerned about the aesthetics, they can also be made out of a clear material. Lingual braces, which are bonded to the back of teeth instead of the front, are another less visible option. The most discrete appliance is the removable clear aligner, which consists of a progression of custom-made clear trays that reposition teeth incrementally.

How’s that for a disappearing act?!

If you would like more information about orthodontic treatment please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about the subject by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “The Magic of Orthodontics.”

By Richard H. Lestz DDS, PC
April 25, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures

Find out how you can get a whiter smile quickly with in-office teeth whitening.teeth whitening

Is your yellowing, dull smile making you feel self-conscious? Do you feel awkward or even embarrassed to smile at those around you? If you find that you actually smile less because of dental stains, then our Forest Hills, NY, cosmetic dentist, Dr. Richard Lestz, is here to provide a simple solution: teeth whitening.

What causes teeth to become yellow?

Unfortunately, this is a common part of the aging process. In this case it is the layer underneath the enamel—known as the dentin—that actually begins to darken. If you are a teeth grinder you may find that enamel thins out faster and your teeth become dull and yellow rather quickly.

Besides aging’s effects on your teeth, the foods and drinks you consume can also lead to a stained smile. If you are a smoker, then chances are pretty good that you deal with some pretty unpleasant stains as well. Some may even be rather dark and embarrassing.

Of course, dental stains can also be internal. Direct trauma, excessive fluoride consumption, taking certain medications such as antibiotics for a long period of time or even genetics can affect the color of your teeth.

Who is right for professional teeth whitening?

When it comes to getting teeth whitening in Forest Hills, NY, there are some things you should know. First of all, the stains that will respond to this treatment will be external stains. Our in-office teeth whitening system is strong, and it’s probably the highest concentration of bleaching gel available; however, this doesn’t mean that it can reach those deeper layers of the tooth to remove these stains. External, yellow stains caused by smoking, aging and what you eat will respond best to this treatment.

When you choose to get in-office teeth whitening, you’ll see results the moment your treatment is over. In fact, you may only require one whitening session to get the results you want. A lot will depend on the severity of your stains and just how much whiter you want your smile.

It’s also important to talk to us about any tooth sensitivity you may already have, as this treatment can sometimes temporarily increase sensitivity for a few days. Those who have restorations like fillings, crowns and bridges should also know that teeth whitening treatment will not whiten artificial structures; however, restorations can be replaced to match your more radiant smile.

If you have questions about teeth whitening and what it can do for you, call our Forest Hills, NY, dental office today to schedule your consultation. We would love to help you figure out whether teeth whitening is the right choice for you.

By Richard H. Lestz DDS, PC
April 11, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures

One of the most important aspects of social interaction is smiling, showing others we’re confident and outgoing.  Many people, though, are hesitant to use this important social skill because their teeth are unattractive.

But even the most unattractive teeth can be dramatically transformed through cosmetic dentistry. Here are 5 prominent ways we can restore beauty to your problem teeth.

Enamel shaping. Sometimes teeth can have an irregular shape that makes them stand out like a sore thumb. With this “sculpting” technique, we remove very small amounts of enamel, the outer protective layer of a tooth, which improves the tooth’s overall shape without harming it.

Bonding. Recent developments in acrylics now make it easier to repair chipped, broken or decayed teeth with minimal preparation. The acrylic material can be molded to resemble a natural tooth and colored to precisely match its shade and that of neighboring teeth. It’s then bonded to the tooth with a durability that can last through years of daily biting and chewing.

Veneers. These thin layers of dental porcelain are bonded to teeth to cover minor defects. Otherwise healthy teeth that are slightly chipped, stained or a bit out of alignment can get a more attractive “face” that’s durable and lasting.

Crowns and Bridgework. Sometimes teeth are too heavily decayed or lost altogether to use bonding or veneers. With porcelain dental restorations that have a strong inner core and an outer life-like appearance, we can completely cover an individual damaged tooth with a custom-made crown or replace one or more missing teeth with fixed bridgework.

Dental Implants. Introduced over thirty years ago, implants are a popular tooth replacement choice.  Its inner titanium post is surgically inserted into the jaw where bone cells grow and adhere to it to form a strong, lasting bond. Implants can be used for single teeth or as supports for fixed bridgework or removable dentures.

Regardless of your teeth’s appearance problems, cosmetic dentistry has a solution. The first step is a comprehensive examination — from there we can advise you on the best options for turning your embarrassing smile into a more beautiful and confident one.

If you would like more information on the various techniques for smile transformation, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Beautiful Smiles by Design.”

Contact Us

Richard H. Lestz DDS, PC

Forest Hills, NY Cosmetic Dentist
Richard H. Lestz D.D.S., P.C.
11045 Queens Blvd Ste 109
Forest Hills, NY 11375
(718) 544-9100
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