My Blog

Posts for: August, 2020

By Mark J. Gleckner, D.M.D.
August 24, 2020
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: fillings  
ItsanArtDeterminingToothColorinCompositeResinRestorations

It takes a lot of skill, experience, talent and artistry to create tooth restorations that look so natural that no one can tell them apart from the originals. To do so requires understanding of the normal anatomy of a tooth as well as of the interactions of light and color.

How the anatomy of a tooth determines color

The color that we perceive when looking at a tooth results from the combined appearance of the tooth’s center core (dentin layer) and its covering enamel. Going from the outside in, the enamel is made of tightly packed crystals of calcium, which cause it to be one of the hardest substances naturally produced by animals. The crystals are also responsible for a tooth’s brilliance and translucence. The dentin is more like bone, a porous living tissue composed of microscopic tubes, interspersed with more calcium crystals. In the very center of the tooth is a central chamber containing the pulp and nerves.

Each of these layers has its own physical and optical properties. Since the enamel is translucent and the dentin is more opaque, most of the tooth’s color comes from the dentin and is transmitted through the enamel layer. Factors that affect this transmission include the thickness and age of the enamel as well as external tooth whitening.

If the enamel is more translucent, more of the color of the dentin shows through. If it is more opaque, the enamel absorbs and reflects light so that less color is visible and the enamel looks brighter.

The language of color composition and reflected light

Color means the whole spectrum in the rainbow. The spectrum is made up of the three primary colors — red, blue, and green. When all are combined, they create white light.

Hue refers to the brightest forms of the colors. The color we perceive depends on the dominant wavelength of light that is reflected by an object.

Value refers to a color’s lightness or darkness. A brighter color has a higher value.

Chroma is the amount of identifiable hue in a color. An achromatic color (without hue) appears gray.

Saturation is a measure of a color’s intensity.

This terminology of color is used not only by dentists and dental technicians, but also by a wide range of artists. It implies expertise and understanding of how colors work, how they vary and change and affect one another.

Contact us today to schedule an appointment or to discuss your questions about bonding to repair chipped teeth. You can also learn more by reading the Dear Doctor article, “Artistic Repair of Front Teeth with Composite Resin.”


By Mark J. Gleckner, D.M.D.
August 14, 2020
Category: Oral Health
Tags: saliva  
DiseaseDetection-SalivasNewRole

For over a century now, health providers have depended on blood and urine samples to diagnose many forms of disease. Very soon, though, we may routinely use a different bodily fluid that's easier and cheaper to collect: saliva.

Secreted by six hundred or more glands in the mouth, saliva performs a number of important functions for digestion and overall oral health. Saliva lubricates the mouth to make food easier to swallow. Its enzymes begin the digestion process breaking down food even before we swallow. It also helps wash out food particles that could build up as plaque on the teeth and harbor disease-causing bacteria.

In terms of dental health, its greatest role is as a neutralizer of food acid. It's natural after we eat for the acid levels in the mouth to rise above normal. If acid remains in contact with enamel for an extended period of time it can soften the enamel's minerals and make it easier for them to erode. Within thirty minutes to an hour after eating, saliva neutralizes acid and restores the mouth's normal pH level. Saliva also contains calcium and phosphate materials, which helps restore some of the minerals the enamel may have lost from the acid contact.

But we're discovering saliva can do even more: we can now use it as an indicator for certain conditions in the body. Like blood or urine, saliva contains molecules that can serve as biological markers for different types of disease. By employing devices calibrated to detect these markers, we can use saliva to uncover cancer, diabetes or other systemic conditions.

As these particular devices are manufactured and become more available, the use of saliva for disease diagnosis will rise. In the future, you may not need a trip to the bathroom or wince at a needle stick — a swab of your saliva will do!

If you would like more information on saliva's role in your health, 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 “Saliva: How it is Used to Diagnose Disease.”


By Mark J. Gleckner, D.M.D.
August 04, 2020
Category: Oral Health
WhatYoucandotoEasethatBurningSensationinYourMouth

Have you ever felt a hot, burning sensation in your mouth—like it had been scalded—but you didn't eat or drink anything that could have caused it?

While you may think you’re hallucinating, there’s another possibility: Burning Mouth Syndrome (BMS). This condition, which can last for years, produces sensations in the mouth of not only scalding or burning, but also tingling, numbness and a decline in your ability to taste. Patients may feel it throughout their mouth or only in localized areas like the lips, tongue or inside the cheeks.

The exact cause of BMS is also something of a mystery. It’s been theoretically linked to diabetes, vitamin or mineral deficiencies and psychological problems. Because it’s most common among women of menopausal age hormonal changes have been proposed as a factor, although hormone replacement therapy often doesn’t produce any symptomatic relief for BMS.

To complicate matters, other conditions often share the condition’s effects, which need to be ruled out first to arrive at a BMS diagnosis. A feeling of scalding could be the result of mouth dryness, caused by medications or systemic conditions that inhibit saliva flow. Some denture wearers may display some of the symptoms of BMS due to an allergic reaction to denture materials; others may have a similar reaction to the foaming agent sodium lauryl sulfate found in some toothpaste that can irritate the skin inside the mouth.

If these other possibilities can be ruled out, then you may have BMS. While unfortunately there’s no cure for the condition, there are ways to lessen its impact. There’s even the possibility that it will resolve itself over time.

Until then, keep your mouth moist by drinking lots of water or using saliva-stimulating products, limiting alcohol, caffeinated drinks or spicy foods and refraining from smoking. If you’re taking medications that could cause dry mouth, speak with your physician about changing to an alternative. And try to reduce stress in your life through exercise, mindfulness practices or support groups.

While BMS isn’t considered harmful to your physical health it can make life less enjoyable. Careful symptom management may help improve your quality of life.

If you would like more information on Burning Mouth Syndrome, 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 “Burning Mouth Syndrome: A Painful Puzzle.”


By Mark J. Gleckner, D.M.D.
August 03, 2020
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Invisalign  

A beautiful smile is difficult to achieve if you have crooked and misaligned teeth. Luckily, this dilemma is something that can be corrected with help from Dr. Mark Gleckner. Here at Smiles By Dr. Mark in Florham Park NJ, one of the most recommended ways to fix teeth misalignment is Invisalign. Let’s take a look at the essential benefits Invisalign can offer you.

Improve Your Dental Health

Invisalign Florham Park treatment is not just about aesthetics. Its use of proprietary clear aligner trays will also help improve your dental health. With treatment, you reduce your chances of getting gum disease and tooth decay. How is this possible?

Left unresolved, the misalignment of the upper and lower teeth will lead to a variety of oral health issues. This includes cavities, tooth loss, erosion of the enamel, and gum infection among others. The Invisalign treatment corrects these problems to restore your oral health. It also addresses problems like discomfort while eating or speaking brought about by the misalignment of your teeth.

Nearly Invisible

Unlike other treatments that have wires and brackets, the clear tray aligners used by Invisalign Florham Park makes the treatment virtually invisible. This means that people no longer have to contend with the unappealing look of traditional orthodontic treatment or the common stigma that goes with it.

Safe and Comfortable

Because Invisalign trays are removable, they offer a unique benefit for those who are into sports or other activities that require unobstructed access to their mouth. The removable feature of Invisalign likewise allows patients to take it out and use a mouth guard to protect their teeth when playing sports. Additionally, this removability factor allows you to clean your teeth better, eat your favorite foods, and enjoy your daily life while on the treatment.

Convenient Treatment

Traditional orthodontic procedures take substantial time before any noticeable improvement can be gained. With Invisalign Florham Park, it is possible to see some improvements even with your first set of aligners. This saves you time on your treatment, allowing you to focus on other essential activities in your life.

Further, while under the Invisalign treatment, you would normally have to visit your dentist in Florham Park NJ only every six weeks to get your replacement aligners.

Beautiful Smile

With the results from your Invisalign treatment, you will now become the proud owner of a beautiful and straight smile. You will no longer be shy to flash your teeth for everyone to see. So it’s not surprising that patients who undergo the Invisalign treatment find renewed self-confidence and better social life from their results.

Want to Experience The Benefits of Invisalign For Yourself? Contact Us

Dial (973) 377-1174 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Mark Gleckner here at Smiles By Dr. Mark in Florham Park NJ.


By Mark J. Gleckner, D.M.D.
August 03, 2020
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: dental implants  

There are negative consequences to losing a tooth, more so when you lose multiple teeth. Not only will it affect the way you look, but your oral and overall health as well. One of the more damaging things that you have to be on the lookout for is the potential jawbone loss due to the death of the tooth roots. With this, even the integrity of the adjacent teeth and gums begin to suffer. Fortunately, dental implants can help avert this potential dental hazard.

To find out if you qualify for dental implants, you can consult with Dr. Mark Gleckner of Smiles By Dr. Mark in Florham Park NJ. Until then, learn how you can benefit from implants below.

Permanent Tooth Replacement

Designed to fuse with your jawbone, implants are the closest thing to a permanent replacement of your natural teeth and roots. They also help prevent the deterioration of the jawbone and stimulate its growth once they have successfully fused with the jawbone.

Restored Speech

Unlike removable teeth restorations that could slip out of your mouth any time, particularly if they don’t fit well or have seen better days, dental implants are anchored to your jawbone. This means you no longer have to slur words and you benefit from improved diction and enunciation, making every word you say easier to understand. It's why your Dental Implants Florham Park is highly recommended.

Increased Comfort

Since implants become a part of you, you won’t need to perform special cleaning procedures and worry about proper fitting. You’ll need to care for your dental implants as you would your real teeth, which involves diligently practicing a daily oral care regimen and going to routine visits to your dentist in Florham Park NJ.

Eat Without Worries

Because implants are made from immensely durable materials, you can consume virtually anything you like without having difficulty chewing. Not only are the dental implants in Florham Park natural-looking, but they also restore the biting force required to eat with ease that’s comparable to your real teeth.

Better Oral Health

Dental implants improve the state of your oral health by helping you avert potential oral diseases. By preserving the adjacent teeth, implants also help to ensure the integrity of the rest of your natural teeth.

Long-Lasting

How long will implants last? Quite possibly, for the rest of your life. This is, of course, provided that you continue to observe excellent oral hygiene habits and a sensible lifestyle.

Find Out How Dental Implants Can Help You, Talk to Us

Arrange an evaluation here at Smiles By Dr. Mark in Florham Park NJ with your dentist, Dr. Mark Gleckner, by calling (973) 377-1174.