You’re Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile

Posted by Chris Raines on Nov 3, 2017 3:56:33 PM

Pi Dental Center Open House

We’ve all heard the song, “You’re never fully dressed without a smile.” In the Broadway musical, songwriters, Charles Strouse and Martin Charnin talk about how one’s smile and values outweigh the importance of elaborate attire or designer shoes.

The holidays are right around the corner. Festivities and gala events are on the schedule. Whether it’s for a Thanksgiving celebration, office Christmas party or New Year’s Bash, finding the perfect outfit is on many a to-do list. While accessories, like jewelry and scarves, can be an essential part of an outfit, it’s your smile that pulls everything together. A confident healthy smile is an essential part of a “wardrobe.”

Broken, stained and missing teeth not only detract from your appearance, they also reduce confidence and contribute to an array of health problems.

Jennifer Soong wrote in WEBMD, “Gum disease is linked to a host of illnesses including heart disease, diabetes, respiratory disease, osteoporosis, and rheumatoid arthritis. By combing through 1,000-plus medical histories, researchers at the University of North Carolina School of Dentistry found that people with gum disease were twice as likely as others to die from a heart attack and three times as likely to have a stroke. The mouth can act as a portal of entry for an infection, says Salomon Amar, DMD, PhD, professor and director at the Center for Anti-inflammatory Therapeutics at Boston University School of Dental Medicine. Ongoing inflammation in your mouth can allow bacteria to enter the bloodstream, which may lead to more inflammation in other parts of your body, such as the heart.”

At Pi Dental Center, our goal is to help our patients gain a gorgeous smile with healthy, gleaming white teeth that feel comfortable and function well.

Brilliant White Teeth

The Zoom Tooth Whitening system is a fast and convenient in-office service available at Pi Dental Center. Zoom is safe, effective and long lasting. Teeth can be lightened effectively as much as eight shades in just one office visit.

Digital Dentistry

AvaDent® Digital Dentures are superior to traditional solutions. AvaDent® teeth are robotically milled, for predictable precision and strength.

Digital Crown Technology

Digital crowns are faster and more accurate than traditional crowns. Impressions are more comfortable and this technology provides a better experience for our patients. Crown colors are realistic and the final product is superior.

Replacing Missing Teeth

Dental implants are the best option for replacement of missing teeth. Implants have a 96% success rate that has been proven through a vast body of research. They provide support and security without adding force to remaining teeth. Implants can replace a single missing tooth, a few teeth or all of the teeth in the entire mouth. They feel like your own teeth and look natural and attractive.

Learn What Sets Pi Dental Center Apart

This is your chance to learn about Pi Dental Center. An Open House is scheduled for Thursday, November 16th, 2017 from 10:00am to 3:00pm. The event is open to the public. Join us for a tour of our elite facility, a complimentary dental exam and some refreshments. We will be handing out an array of gifts and prizes. Meet board certified prosthodontist, Dr. Glenn Wolfinger, and the “Pi Team” and ask questions. The first step to a beautiful healthy smile is investigation. Pi Dental Center’s Open House is your opportunity to learn what treatment is needed and explore available dental procedures in a relaxed setting.

Take necessary steps for a dazzling smile

Call us at 215-646-6334 to reserve your spot at the Open House. If you need more information, please feel free to contact us!

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Tags: dental implants, missing teeth, replacement of missing teeth, You're never fully dressed without a smile, look younger

Can This Tooth Be Saved?

Posted by Chris Raines on Apr 13, 2017 11:03:39 AM

Illustration presents various choices when considering whether to save a painful tooth

What happens when a tooth becomes painful? Can this tooth be saved?

When a tooth is painful, the decision whether to save or remove a tooth must be determined. If this tooth can be saved, we determine whether the patient wants to save it. Time constraints and financial concerns are just two of the variables that affect this decision.

Is a damaged tooth always painful?

Dr. Glenn Wolfinger, board certified prosthodontist at Pi Dental Center, was asked if a damaged tooth is always painful. He said, “Not always. A damaged tooth is usually initially uncomfortable. Pain will increase with swelling. But sometimes the pain goes away and the patient mistakenly believes the tooth has gotten better. However, this may mean that the nerve has died inside the tooth, which is a source of infection.”

What about an infected tooth?

Dr. Tom Balshi added, “An infected tooth can lead to medical and heart problems and can go into the blood stream and eventually lead to the brain.” Daryl Weiss, dental assistant, mentioned, “Bone loss can occur and the infection can spread to adjoining teeth.”

What if a tooth is mobile?

Wolfinger continues, “Not every mobile tooth needs to be extracted. All teeth have some level of mobility. Periodontally compromised teeth tend to be more mobile. Increased mobility is a sign that a tooth needs to be evaluated.”

How do we decide if a tooth should be saved or extracted?

“Restorability is the most important part of the decision.  We determine if the tooth can be restored with a filling or a crown. Sometimes root canal is needed.”

“There are times when a tooth is not restorable. At that point a root canal would not be indicated. If the tooth cannot be restored properly, an extraction is the only option.”

“If a tooth is restorable, then it is up to the patient to decide if they want to save the tooth.”

How do patients feel about losing a tooth?

Losing a tooth can be very traumatic. The decision to extract a tooth can be very difficult, even when it is necessary. But it is important to understand that treatment options, like dental implants and AvaDent Digital Dentures that effectively provide healthy, esthetic, and functional results.

What are the criteria?

If decay approaches the bone level, then restoration may not be possible. If there is a root fracture, extraction is indicated.

Can this tooth be saved? Illustration of healthy tooth, tooth with some bone loss, tooth with advanced bone loss

What about extracting the tooth and leaving an open space?

Leaving an open space is not always the best solution. While the actual fee for an extraction is inexpensive, the long term cost is not cheap. Adjacent teeth can shift and make restoration more difficult later on. Missing teeth present an esthetic and functional deficit for the patient.

Is there more than one choice treatment?

There are several options for treatment. During the evaluation, the doctor and patient discuss several aspects of treatment to learn the patient’s most important priorities and explore all available options. Comprehensive treatment plans that outline each option in detail are provided.

To make the best decision, we consider:

  • What is the best choice in terms of dental health?
  • Which option will last the longest?
  • Which will feel the most comfortable?
  • Which choice will allow the patient to eat and speak adequately?
  • Which is the most strong and durable?
  • Which is the most attractive?
  • Which can be achieved most quickly?
  • How does the cost of each choice compare?

How can a patient avoid tooth extraction?

“If the patient maintains a regular oral hygiene schedule and allows us to adequately evaluate the health of the mouth, including radiographic examination as needed, tooth extraction can usually be avoided. Small problems become big ones when they are undiagnosed.”

So what should you do if you suspect a problem?

Try not to wait until a problem becomes an emergency. Schedule an oral hygiene visit at least every 6 months. Contact us as soon as you suspect a problem. Provide the scheduling coordinator with as much information as possible when you schedule your appointment.

Visit Pi Dental Center's YouTube Channel to learn more about dental implant treatment options.

If you have questions, feel free to call us at 215-646-6334.

Pi Dental Center’s mission is to go beyond the preservation and maintenance of teeth to provide the best functional and aesthetically ideal treatment. Our aim is to make your dental experience painless, convenient, and comfortable. Our supportive team helps to make your decision painless, straightforward and uncomplicated.

Ask A Dental Question Or Schedule An Appointment

Tags: dental implants, bone loss, dental pain, tooth loss

Service With A Smile

Posted by Chris Raines on Mar 14, 2017 2:01:48 PM

Did we serve you with a smile - sign at grocery storeThe sign at the grocery store said, "Did We Serve You With A Smile?" Service with a smile is a core policy of many companies in their goal to provide outstanding customer service.

A smile communicates a frame of mind and enhances an interaction. It validates statements made by the recipient of the smile. It conveys a caring attitude and improves communication.

Tricia, a center-city Philadelphia hairdresser, was asked if she often smiled while cutting customers' hair. She said, "Yes. My smile may be the only smile the clients see all day. They might not have spoken to anyone other than me. It can cheer a person up. A smile can make someone else's day!"
Some studies have shown that a smile must be genuine. Faking a smile can take an emotional and physical toll. Other studies suggest that the simple act of putting on a smile can be a mood booster, theorizing that smiling activates areas of the brain associated with reward and triggers the release of dopamine.

When asked about smiling while talking on the telephone, Maryellen at Pi Dental Center said yes, “They say people can ‘hear’ a smile.” Smiling while on the phone has been shown to be valuable. A University of Portsmouth, England study showed that people can hear a smile and some can even pick up on different kinds of smiles.

Reluctance to smile hinders communication. Some people who feel self-conscious because of their dental condition do not smile. Proven and predictable dental implant technology and digital dentures restore beautiful smiles and repair damaged teeth quickly and competently. Board certified prosthodontists at Pi Dental Center  have been successfully providing advanced dental care for over 30 years. Teeth In A Day® and Computer Guided Dental Implant Treatment, and the No Bone Solution have helped patients with very little bone regain healthy mouths with permanent teeth supported by dental implants.

A smile establishes rapport and reflects the positive attitude that is so vital to productive relationships. A smile can do wonders! Call 215-646-6334 or contact us at the link below to learn more or schedule an appointment.

Ask A Dental Question Or Schedule An Appointment

Tags: dental implants, permanent teeth, healthy mouths, smile establishes rapport, smile improves relationships, pi dental care center

Dental Implant Treatment with Accelerset Prosthesis by AvaDent: Part 2

Posted by Stephen Balshi MBE on Nov 18, 2016 2:45:17 PM

Ken smiles following completion of dental implant treatment with an AvaDent prosthesis.During the last blog post, we discussed Ken who was diagnosed with rare disorders called Osteogenesis Imperfecta and Odontogenesis Imperfecta. These disorders caused extensive dental problems. Ken was treated by Dr. Balshi and the team at Pi Dental Center with implant supported AvaDent Accelerset prostheses. This technology is discussed below.

Ken's is the first Accelerset Prosthesis engineered by AvaDent (Global Dental Science). It's fully automated and consists of 3 main parts:

1) a milled titanium framework that is designed with individual keys to support,

2) fully milled keyway teeth and is veneered with

3) a fully milled PMMA gingiva.  

The teeth can be made of several different materials.  In Ken's case, the front teeth are lithium disilicate (e.max) and the back teeth are multi-layer zirconia.  


Photos detailing progression from computer model to final:
AvaDent prosthesis design in AvaDent Viewer

AvaDent prosthesis design in Viewer Software

From the design the framework is built and individual crowns are placed.

From the design the framework is built and individual crowns are placed.

The completed prosthesis which has been designed according to the digital design that was created in the AvaDent Viewer.

The completed restoration, which has been designed
according to the digital design that was created in the Viewer.

The completed prosthesis which has been designed according to the digital design that was created in the AvaDent Viewer.

The completed prosthesis which has been designed
according to the digital design that was created in the Viewer.

ken-final-prosthesis-closeup.jpg

Ken's final restoration


Ken is also part of a research project to study the retention of the crowns to the milled titanium framework.  Half of the crowns are cemented to the titanium framework with resin cement and the other half are press-fit to the framework using an intermediary sleeve made from polyether ether ketone (PEEK).  

The technique of cementing the crowns in place is the industry standard.  

The press-fit technique with the PEEK sleeve is the subject of our clinical research.  All of the milled components are made separately in three different types of milling machines simultaneously.  They are then assembled and made ready for delivery to the patient.  

Ken's Accelerset prosthesis is the first of its kind.  It is supported by 6 dental implants.  Accelerset prostheses can be be made on any number of implants and most types of dental implants.

Ken before and after dental implant treatment with delivery of the Accelerset AvaDent Prosthesis

Board certifed prosthodontists, Dr. Thomas Balshi and Dr. Glenn Wolfinger, are skilled at providing advanced dental implant care and delivering superior prosthetic solutions.  To learn more about dental implant treatment using the Accelerset call 215-646-6334 or contact us using the link below.

Ask A Dental Question Or Schedule An Appointment

Terminology:

Osteogenesis Imperfecta (OI) is a rare disorder affecting the connective tissue and characterized by extremely fragile brittle bones that break or fracture easily, often without apparent cause. The specific symptoms and physical findings associated with OI vary greatly from case to case. The severity of OI also varies greatly, even among individuals in the same family.

Odontogenesis Imperfecta is a developmental disturbance of one or of several adjacent teeth, characterized by deficient formation of enamel and dentin. Such teeth exhibit delayed eruption into the oral cavity.

Tags: dental implants, dental prostheses, prosthetic teeth, prosthodontic dental restoration

When Looking For Dental Implants, How Does The Dentist Measure Up?

Posted by Chris Raines on Oct 11, 2016 12:04:50 PM

Drs. Balshi and Wolfinger lecturing to students and dentistsEach morning, the Pi Dental Center mailbox receives a new batch of emails from people looking for the best dental implant specialist. The other day, we received an email asking if our doctors were as good as Doctor So-and-So in Las Vegas.  

Before responding, I did a little research to learn about So-and-So. I learned that Dr. So-and-So had almost nothing to back up his glitzy persona.

I’ve had the pleasure of working at Pi Dental Center for 29 ½ years for Drs. Thomas Balshi and Glenn Wolfinger! One of my tasks is to document every research article on our website. I document every book they write, every course they teach, every lecture they give, every poster-presentation they produce and every award they receive.  Documenting their distinguished careers is almost a full time job.

Drs. Balshi and Wolfinger are both board certified prosthodontists. Prosthodontists are dentists who specialize in diagnosis, planning, rehabilitation, and maintenance of the teeth and mouth with special emphasis on the patient’s oral comfort, facial appearance, and dental health. Prosthodontists treat patients with congenital conditions, missing teeth and complex dental problems. Prosthodontists receive two or three years of additional training following dental school through an accredited American Dental Association program.

To become board certified, prosthodontists must successfully pass a rigorous examination conducted by the American Board of Prosthodontics. These specialists are subjected to recertification every eight years to insure their clear understanding of current practices that affect the specialty.

Teeth In A Day Course presented by Drs. Balshi and Wolfinger in 2016

Drs. Balshi and Wolfinger’s 118 research articles are available online.

A quick way to learn doctor’s accomplishments is to look at their Curriculum Vitaes. Here is the link to Dr. Balshi’s lengthy Curriculum Vitae  and Dr. Wolfinger’s comprehensiveCurriculum Vitae.

Dr. Balshi has been America’s Top Dentist and International Congress of Oral Implantologists Diplomate. He’s been awarded for 40 continuous years of service by the American College of Prosthodontists, received the Temple University Kornberg School of Dentistry Gallery of Success Award and the American College of Prosthodontics Founders Award. He was named Top Prosthodontist by the Consumers’ Research Council of America. Dr. Balshi earned the United States Army Medal of Commendation, a Freedom Foundation George Washington Medal of Honor, and has been recognized in the Congressional Record of the United States of America.

Both Drs. Balshi and Wolfinger have been at the forefront of dental implant research and development since the 1980’s. Their research has helped to take the journey to fixed teeth from a difficult year-long ordeal that involved many steps to a relatively pain-free one-day procedure.

Drs. Balshi and Wolfinger trained graduate and postdoctoral students from Harvard, Tufts, Loma Linda, Nova Southeastern, Temple, University of Connecticut, University of Maryland and other dental schools and lectured worldwide on surgical and restorative aspects of dental implant treatment.

Pi Dental Center’s prosthodontists successfully provided dental implants to patients with countless complicated problems from diabetes, Cleidocranial Dysplasia, Ectodermal Dysplasia, advanced periodontal disease, congenitally missing teeth, and traumatic injury. 

Some of Drs. Balshi and Wolfinger’s Scientific Accomplishments:

Patients have willingly and readily provided positive reviews for Drs. Balshi and Wolfinger.  The whole team has been commended for their professionalism, caring friendly manner and beautiful result.

Drs. Balshi and Wolfinger are the real deal. Dr. So-and-So — not so much.

If you are looking for a dentist or have questions about dental treatment please feel free to contact us.  We look forward to helping you regain your magnificent and healthy smile.

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Chris Raines
Web Site Administrator
Information Systems Manager

 

 

Tags: dental implants, dentist, choosing a dentist

Oral Hygiene Maintains Investment in Dental Implants

Posted by Pi Dental Center on Sep 1, 2016 5:36:17 PM

Cutting back on good oral hygiene is like growing a tiny seedling into an enormous monster.Dental implants are a significant investment and maintenance of those implants is mandatory. Cutting back on good oral hygiene is like growing a tiny seedling into an enormous monster. A small issue can result in a much larger problem.

Prevention is key. Proper daily oral hygiene, with in-office prophylaxis by a registered dental hygienist with an examination by a qualified dentist helps to ensure a healthy mouth and implants.Remember to maintain good oral hygiene.

Dr. James Rutkowski, Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Oral Implantology* addressed dental implant maintenance in an editorial in this month’s issue. He said, “When everything is going well, patients can “slack off.” His editorial stressed that, “as patients get older, they sometimes develop other health issues and take more medications, which affect their oral health.” Poor hygiene maintence and missed recare appointments can turn small manageable issues into larger problems and even lead to failed implants.

During each oral hygiene visit, the patient’s medical history will be reviewed and updated.  Dental implants, teeth, and gum tissues are evaluated, noting soft tissue inflammation and bone loss.  Proper home care routine is reviewed and oral hygiene instruction is provided.

The American College of Prosthodontists recommends prophylaxis and dental examinations be performed every 6 months. The organization suggests that higher risk patients have these treatments on a 3 to 4 month schedule. This higher risk classification is based on age, systemic health, periodontal health, medications, and the patient’s ability to perform self-care.

Maintain your dental investment. Ask your dentist or hygienist if your hygiene regimen is adequate. If you are due for an oral hygiene visit, please give us a call or click here to schedule.

Schedule an appointment.

* Special Thanks to: James L. Rutkowski, DMD, PhD, Editor in Chief, Editorial, Journal of Oral Implantology, DOI: 10.1563/AAID-JOI-D-Editorial. 4201.

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Tags: dental implants, oral hygiene, american college of prosthodontists, dental examination, dental investment