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Posts for: April, 2016

By Dr. James M. Maragos, DDS, PC
April 28, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
TheCaseforMovingJustaFewTeethOrthodontically

We often associate orthodontics with moving several teeth on the upper or lower arches (or both) with braces or clear aligners. But not all patients require a major endeavor — sometimes only one or a few teeth need to be moved, and not very far.

A slight gap between the two upper front teeth is one type of situation that only requires minor tooth movement: just a few teeth need to be moved and usually just a millimeter or two. The appliances needed to achieve this are also relatively simple in design: removable retainers or small scale fixed braces with small springs or elastics that place pressure against the teeth. The process may also only take a few months rather than two years as with major tooth movement.

Preparing for the procedure, though, must be undertaken with great care. We need to first determine if moving the teeth even slightly could affect the bite with the opposite teeth. We must also ensure the roots of the teeth intended for movement are in good position for allowing the space to be closed.

We must then consider the other supporting structures for the teeth. It’s important for gums and bone to be healthy — if not, treating any found disease may be necessary first before beginning orthodontics. And, if the gap between the two upper teeth was created by an abnormally large frenum, the small strip of tissue connecting the lip to the upper gum, it may be necessary to remove it before tooth movement can begin to ensure the closed gap stays closed.

Like any other orthodontic treatment, minor tooth movement first requires a thorough examination with x-ray imaging to determine the exact tooth position, bite issues and the surrounding gum and bone health. We can then be reasonably certain if this straightforward procedure is right for you, and could help you obtain a more attractive smile.

If you would like more information on different orthodontic treatment choices, 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 “Minor Tooth Movement.”


By James M. Maragos, D.D.S.
April 15, 2016
Category: Dental Health
Tags: Dental Routine  

What you need to do to maintain your dental health

If you neglect your mouth, chances are good that you will develop a dental problem like decay or periodontal disease, or both. But it isn’t just your mouth that is affected. Your oral health contributes greatly to your health overall. Dr. James Maragos, your family dentist in Dental HealthLaGrange, Illinois, wants you to know the importance of a dental routine.

The goal of your dental routine should be to regularly free your mouth of plaque because plaque sticks to your teeth and contains harmful bacteria. These bacteria cause both tooth decay and bone loss associated with periodontal disease.

Your dental routine should include:

Brushing after meals and before bedtime- a manual toothbrush is a fine tool, but electric or sonic toothbrushes may clean better and may be easier to use

Flossing at least once per day- either using a piece of floss or floss threaders or other floss devices

Let’s not forget that regular visits to your dentist should be part of your dental routine. Ideally, you should visit the dentist every six months for professional dental cleanings, and yearly for an exam and x-rays. If you have periodontal disease or are prone to tooth decay, you should visit Dr. Maragos every three to four months.

Dr. Maragos wants you to know that regular care both at home and at his office will keep you in great dental shape. Be preventive to avoid dental problems. If you do develop a dental problem, don’t wait to get treatment. If you do, your small dental problem could turn into a bigger issue, potentially resulting in tooth loss!

Your dental routine and regular dental maintenance are vital to your health. If you want help with your dental routine, you owe it to yourself to call Dr. James Maragos, your family dentist in LaGrange, Illinois. He can help you maintain your dental health, so call today and get on track toward a smile-filled future!


By Dr. James M. Maragos, DDS, PC
April 13, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
ArianaGrandeBreaksFree-ofHerWisdomTeeth

Via a recent Instagram post, pop diva Ariana Grande became the latest young celebrity to publicly acknowledge a dental milestone: having her wisdom teeth removed. The singer of hits such as “Break Free” and “Problem” posted an after-surgery picture of herself (wearing her signature cat-eye eyeliner), with a caption addressed to her teeth: “Peace out, final three wisdom teeth. It’s been real.”

With the post, Grande joined several other celebs (including Lily Allen, Paris Hilton and Emile Hirsch) who have shared their dental surgery experience with fans. Will "wisdom teeth removal" become a new trending topic on social media? We aren’t sure — but we can explain a bit about the procedure, and why many younger adults may need it.

Technically called the “third molars,” wisdom teeth usually begin to emerge from the gums between the ages of 17 and 25 — presumably, around the same time that a certain amount of wisdom emerges. Most people have four of these big molars, which are located all the way in the back of the mouth, on the left and right sides of the upper and lower jaws.

But when wisdom teeth begin to appear, there’s often a problem: Many people don’t have enough space in their jaws to accommodate them. When these molars lack sufficient space to fully erupt (emerge), they are said to be “impacted.” Impacted teeth can cause a number of serious problems: These may include pain, an increased potential for bacterial infections, periodontal disease, and even the formation of cysts (pockets of infection below the gum line), which can eventually lead to tooth and bone loss.

In most cases, the best treatment for impacted wisdom teeth is extraction (removal) of the problem teeth. Wisdom tooth extraction is a routine, in-office procedure that is usually performed under local anesthesia or “conscious sedation,” a type of anesthesia where the patient remains conscious (able to breathe normally and respond to stimuli), but is free from any pain or distress. Anti-anxiety medications may also be given, especially for those who are apprehensive about dental procedures.

So if you find you need your wisdom teeth extracted, don’t be afraid to “Break Free” like Ariana Grande did; whether you post the results on social media is entirely up to you. If you would like more information about wisdom tooth extraction, please call our office to schedule a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Wisdom Teeth” and “Removing Wisdom Teeth.”




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LaGrange, IL 60525

James M. Maragos, D.D.S.

Dr. Maragos’ commitment to his community parallels his commitment to his profession. In 2007, he was elected to... 

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