NY Daily News
No Substitute for Quality Dental Work
Good work speaks for itself. Dr. Victor Oelbaum sees the effects of good, and bad, dental work in his office every day, and he can attest to the difference. Just last week he was looking over the list of appointments for the day and recognized a name he hadn’t seen in quite some time. “It was a patient who I hadn’t seen in 22 years,” he said.
When it came time for her appointment he went out to the waiting room and she gave him a big hug. “She said, ‘I lost you and now I’ve found you again,’” said Dr. Oelbaum. He explained that he had moved offices years ago and somehow in the process this patient stopped coming to see him. Then she saw an article about him in the Daily News and made an appointment. “Since the last time I saw her she’d had a lot of dental work done and most of it was falling apart,” Dr. Oelbaum said. “But a bridge I made for her 22 years ago was still in her mouth and still strong.” Now that’s good work.
It’s all part of the Oelbaum difference. The dentist’s cheerful office in the Bronx is home to a variety of specialists, including an orthodontist, periodontist, endodontist and prosthodontist — a crown and bridge specialist who spends an extra four years after dental school working on reconstruction techniques. From your toddler’s first check-up through braces and more extensive procedures like porcelain veneers, dental implants and root canals, Dr. Oelbaum’s office can address you entire family’s dental needs. That makes it easier to remember to schedule cleanings and other routine care, since all of your doctors are in one place.
Dr. Oelbaum takes time to make sure patients understand every procedure. When it comes to exams and X-rays, results are reviewed with the patient and everything that is needed — such as root canal or replacement teeth — is explained. A treatment plan is devised in the way that is best for the patient. Physical, emotional or financial considerations are taken into account, and a dental plan is created in phases, so the patient is comfortable scheduling procedures in stages, rather than all at once.
According to Dr. Oelbaum, good communication is essential if patients are to trust their doctor and feel comfortable in the dentist’s chair. “There is no cookie-cutter approach,” he says. “We always take time to answer patients’ questions. For patients getting braces, for example, the orthodontist works to go over the goals of the procedure, what the rest of the treatment will involve and what the results of the treatment will deliver. Other dental care is coordinated to make sure the patient’s entire dental picture is considered.”
Dr. Oelbaum urges regular check-ups and X-rays. There is no charge for an initial visit, except for X-rays. His records show that patients who followed this advice spent less time and money over the years on dental problems. “It was the patients who came in every couple of years who needed more care,” he says.
Furthermore, research has shown a correlation between dental health and overall good health. “Gum disease doesn’t hurt, but could be progressing,” he says. “We’re also very vigilant in screening for oral cancer through manual mouth exams. You have very little to lose and everything to gain by coming in for a free exam.”
New periodontic treatments used in Dr. Oelbaum’s practice make it possible to save teeth and if you have to lose a tooth, to regenerate bone for implants. The periodontist who works in Dr. Oelbaum’s office also has his own practice where he has a special laser for gum surgery. While Dr. Oelbaum has the latest in dental technology available to his patients, this is one instrument his office hasn’t yet invested in. Patients can go to the periodontist’s office and take advantage of this much less invasive procedure, which heals more quickly. Dr. Oelbaum cultivates a team environment in his office and this is just one of the ways his patients benefit.
Digital photography makes it possible for crowns and caps to look more natural. “We do a lot of photography,” says Dr. Oelbaum, “that gives the lab more information than it used to have about the color of teeth. Our staff goes through great pains to ensure the highest quality work. We use very specialized labs for implants and crowns.” They use all-porcelain crowns, which are much stronger than other materials and give the crown a very natural, translucent look. “They look better and they feel better, I spend a lot of time getting them right,” says Dr. Oelbaum.
For more information or an appointment, call (718) 882-7202 or email us.