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Cranham on Patient Education: Explaining Oral Health, Function, and Beauty

November 6th, 2009 · 2 Comments

cranhamI tell patients that there are three things to focus on.

The first is biological issues that cause cavities or gum disease. Our first thing is to diagnose these issues. We know we can’t eliminate bacteria, but we can control it. We can create an environment that can be cleaned by the patient – smooth fillings, no deep periodontal pockets. This helps patients take care of their teeth, so they’re more likely to keep natural teeth for life.

Secondly, we must control stress or forces on teeth. There has to be harmony with jaw, muscles, and teeth to distribute forces evenly. As we move the jaws, we want no damaging lateral forces on back teeth. We must establish balance with jaw movement.

Lastly, we keep teeth looking natural for “invisible” dentistry. If a patient is unhappy with the look of his teeth, size, shape, position, and color can be changed for better esthetics. You need to tell patients what they need to do. First focus on bacterial and occlusal issues for health, then move to elective procedures.

Dr. John Cranham owns a private practice in Virginia. He is a partner and Director of Education for The Dawson Academy, a postgraduate dental learning center dedicated to excellence in the field. Visit Dr. Cranham online at or

Tags: Dental Direction from Dr. John Cranham

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 yucaipa teeth whitening // Nov 7, 2009 at 4:02 am

    Wow that’ s cool! A number of important points are present here. Thanks Dr. John for posting this nice & informative article. Please keep it continue, so that i can gather more & more knowledge from here.

  • 2 Cyn // Nov 17, 2009 at 9:56 pm

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