I’m interested in whitening my teeth. How do I go about this?
Simply let us know that you are interested in whitening your teeth and we will examine your teeth to ensure they are suited to our whitening process.
If they are, we can start the process immediately by taking impressions of your teeth so your custom made tray can be made. After one week’s time you will be appointed and issued with your custom take-home whitening kit and instructions.
Most patients achieve their desired whitening result in 10-14 days. Crona | Hygienist
I’m pregnant. Should I still see my dentist for a check up?
Changing hormone levels during pregnancy can cause normal, healthy gums to become red, irritated and swollen. This irritation, known as “Pregnancy Gingivitis” is the body’s exaggerated response to plaque and calculus.
It is very important during this time to stay current with your regular dental cleanings and exams to ensure that dental infections don’t get missed and lead to greater problems down the road. Although dentists will typically postpone major treatment until after the baby is born, emergencies do come up and need to be addressed. Because many of your baby’s organs are being formed in the first trimester, this work is ideally taken care of during the second trimester to minimize any potential risk. Cassie | Practice Manager
What is fluoride and why do I need it?
Fluoride is a naturally-occurring mineral, not an artificial compound or medication like it is sometimes perceived to be. Fluoride is found in fresh and salt water, vegetables and grains, rocks and soil. This naturally occurring mineral plays a critical role in strengthening your teeth to fight off the effects of decay. The Australian Dental Association state that fluoride found in the environment however is not enough on its own to protect your teeth. This is why small supplemental amounts are added to the water supply and toothpaste. Celia | Hygienist.
Is sugar really the devil?
Everything in moderation – we all know that a high sugar intake isn’t good for your overall general health and especially your oral health.
A high sugar diet puts you at a higher risk for dental decay. It is very important that you practice good oral hygiene if you are consuming sugary drinks and foods. You can easily reduce your risk of dental decay by brushing 2-3 times per day with fluoridated toothpaste, daily flossing, drinking fluoridated water and 6 monthly dental visits.
After consuming sugar in your diet it is advisable to rinse your mouth with water. Doing this will cut the time in half that the sugar stays in your mouth, giving the sugar less opportunity to damage to your teeth. Crona | Hygienist
What is the best way to clean my teeth when I have braces?
The best way to clean your teeth with braces is to start by swishing water around your mouth to get all the excess food out of the braces. Piksters and super floss should be used to remove any food that has been stuck in the braces and between the teeth. Brush upper and lower teeth separately with a small head toothbrush using small gentle circular motions (an electric toothbrush is recommended). Brush above and below the brackets making sure the gums are also being brushed without too much pressure. Then brush on the insides of the teeth and on biting surfaces ensuring all tooth surfaces have been cleaned. Celia | Dental hygienist.
Is dental amalgam safe?
“Are your teeth poisoning you?” reads the headline of an article published in a major national newspaper a few years ago. Dramatic, eye-catching, scary stuff, but fortunately dental amalgam has been studied, researched and critically reviewed extensively and established with a record of safety and effectiveness.
Dental amalgam is a combination of metals such as silver, copper and tin, in addition to mercury which binds the components into a hard, stable and safe substance. Over the years, concerns have been raised about the use of amalgam because it contains mercury. The World Dental Federation and World Health Organisation has concluded that “no studies have been published demonstrating systemic adverse effects from amalgam restorations, especially during placement and removal has not been shown to cause any adverse health effects”.
There is no difference in the incidence of any disease or the length of life between people who have amalgam fillings and those that do not. People who have amalgam fillings and have had them removed do not experience an improvement in health.
At Albany Dental, we place both amalgam and composite resin fillings on posterior (back) teeth, so speak to your dentist about what material is best suited to your needs, considering the limitations and advantages of both materials. We definitely do not recommend removal of amalgam fillings due to health concerns or the so-called removal of “toxic substances” from the body. Dr. Philip Heydenrych | Associate Dentist.
At what age should I let my child brush their own teeth?
Behaviours that are learnt from a young age tend to stick with children throughout their lives so it’s never too early to start teaching your child good oral hygiene. The Australian Dental Association recommend children require assistance until 7 or 8 years of age. The parent helps with brushing and flossing, to ensure the child removes all the plaque and to show the child how it should be done. Children will still need assistance until 10years of age by the parent checking after the child has finished brushing, to ensure all the plaque is removed and all tooth surfaces are clean.
How often should I change my toothbrush?
It’s recommended by the Australian Dental Association that consumers replace toothbrushes approximately every 3–4 months or sooner if the bristles become frayed with use. Celia | Dental Hygienist.
When will my baby’s teeth appear? What are the signs and symptoms of teething?
The period when early hard teeth are growing is a major event in the life of an infant, and it can be difficult. The eruption of teeth causes inflammation, which leads to congestion, drooling, and discomfort.
While the average time for the appearance of the first teeth is between five and seven months of age, there is a wide range before and after this that can still be considered “normal.” The teeth might come in as early as one month of age, or they may erupt when the child is one-and-a-half years old. Generally the lower front teeth come in first, and girls’ teeth typically erupt earlier than boys.
Each child is different and sometimes you have to use trial and error to get results. The first thing to remember when you have a teething tot is that distracting them from the pain will help, and there are a variety of ways you can do this. First, try affection and attention. Giving your baby plenty of cuddles and extra attention can help keep their mind off their mouth for some short term relief. Some light pressure with something cold can also help relieve sore gums, like gently rubbing or massaging the gums with a clean finger or a cold spoon. Just remember, not too hard and not too cold! A chilled washcloth can also do the trick. There are a range of teething rings available for babies to gnaw on. Chilled (not frozen) teething rings offer temporary pain relief through the pressure and cold and act as a distraction. Children who are eating solids can also use remedies such as hardened sugar-free rusks, peeled cucumber or frozen carrots large enough that they cannot be swallowed. Cassie | Practice Manager
What are fissure sealants?
Fissure sealants are a hard protective coating usually applied on the biting surfaces of the molar and premolar teeth. These sealants are placed as a preventative measure if the teeth have deep grooves and fissures. These areas are more susceptible to dental decay as they are very deep and narrow and collect plaque bacteria and debris that cannot be easily accessed and cleaned by the toothbrush bristles when brushing. The plaque bacteria and debris trapped in these fissures produce acids that may go on to cause dental decay on these biting surfaces. When these grooves are sealed off the risk for dental decay in these areas is greatly reduced. Crona | Hygienist
Why should I see the dentist every 6 months?
Regular dental visits are essential for the maintenance of healthy teeth and gums. In between those examinations it’s important that you work to keep your teeth and gums clean and healthy.
There are two parts to a regular dental visit.
- The check up
- The cleaning.
During the check up the dentist will check your overall oral health. Aspects of this examination include:
- Examining the gums and checking for gum disease
- Checking for loose teeth
- Looking at the tissues inside the mouth
- Examining the tongue
- Checking saliva
- Checking your bite
- Movement of the lower jaw joint (TMJ)
- Visible evidence of tooth decay
- Checking for broken or worn teeth due to grinding or incorrect brushing
- Checking for damaged or deteriorating fillings
- Checking any dental appliance you may have
- Checking tooth contacts
- Taking x-rays if necessary (generally only every two years)
- Recommend any necessary treatment and make you aware of any areas of concern in the future.
During the cleaning the hygienist will:
- Check the cleanliness of your teeth and gums
- Remove any plaque and tartar (calculus/scale)
- Polish your teeth
- Review and recommend brushing and flossing techniques
- Investigate origin of bad breath as this frequently originates from gums.
All this is done with a view to improve gum and bone health to prevent the occurrence of gum disease (periodontitis). So as you can see, a dental check-up is very important for your health! At Albany Dental, a check-up, clean and fluoride treatment is $170 for all new patients. Talk to us today to book an appointment! Dr. Philip Heydenrych | Associate Dentist.