At Normanhurst Dental, we believe that seeing your dentist on a regular basis is vital to keeping teeth in optimal working order and for overall good health.
The traditional rule of thumb has been every six months; however we believe this should be based on the individual. Some people who have a high rate of dental disease may be advised to come every three months, whereas others who have healthy mouths and minimal dentistry may be advised to come once a year.
By having regular check-ups, we are able to check for any issues that may require simple intervention and treatment. Sometimes it may feel as though everything in the mouth is healthy as there is no pain, however, when pain presents this is often indicative of an advanced problem that may require more expensive and invasive treatment. Most people who have needed fillings didn’t realise the cavity was there until the dentist found them at a check-up.
So check-ups are a vital part of ensuring the health of your mouth and of course, yourself.
X-rays provide us with additional important information about the condition of your teeth and will reveal any hidden decay, problems with the roots of your teeth or issues with your jaw.
Many diseases of the teeth and surrounding tissues cannot be seen when the dentist examines the mouth. An X-ray examination may reveal:
Dentist will evaluate your need for X-rays based on the conditions present in development. At Normanhurst Dental we are aware of concerns around x-ray exposure and use a reduced radiation digital x-ray system.
Flossing reduces the number of bacteria in your mouth. There are millions of these microscopic creatures feeding on food particles left on your teeth. These bacteria live in plaque which can be removed by flossing.
Brushing your teeth gets rid of some of the bacteria in your mouth. Flossing gets rid of the bacteria the toothbrush can't get to. That's the bacteria hiding in the tiny spaces between your teeth. If you do not floss, you allow plaque to remain between your teeth, which eventually harden into tartar and cannot be removed by brushing. Only the dentist can remove tartar.
Ask your dentist to show you the proper way to floss. You will both notice the difference at the next cleaning appointment.
Make it fun! If you are enthusiastic about brushing your teeth, your children will also be enthusiastic. Children want to do the things their parents do. If your children see you brushing your teeth and displaying good dental habits, they will follow. Ask the dentist for other creative ways to get children to brush their teeth.
Getting your children to brush starts with taking them to the dentist at an early age. All children should be seen by their first birthday or 6 months after the eruption of the first tooth.
Fluoride is important to dental health because it helps prevent tooth decay by making your tooth enamel more resistant to acid attacks from plaque bacteria in your mouth.
Studies have shown that children who consumed fluoridated water from birth had less dental decay. Fluoride is a mineral that occurs naturally in many foods and in water. Some natural sources of fluoride are brewed tea, canned fish, cooked kale and spinach, apples, and skim milk.
Fissure sealants act as a barrier, protecting your teeth against decay-causing bacteria. It’s a thin coating painted on chewing surfaces of molars and premolars
Sealants have proven effective with both adults and children, but are most commonly used with children. Despite the fact that sealants are about half the cost of fillings, only a small percentage of school-aged children have sealants on their permanent teeth. Ask your dentist whether sealants are a good choice for you or your children.
Periodontal disease is inflammation and infection of the gums and supporting bone structure, which if left untreated, can cause permanent jaw bone destruction and possible tooth loss. Other signs of periodontal disease include:
Untreated periodontal disease has been linked to increased risk for conditions such as heart disease, stroke, low birth weight babies, pre-term delivery, respiratory disease, and prostate cancer.
Treatment of early periodontal disease can be performed in-office. However, advanced stages may require surgery.
Periodontal disease can be prevented and treated successfully by seeing your dentist and dental hygienist regularly and following recommended care plans.
When you are asleep, production of saliva in your mouth decreases. Since your saliva is the mouth's natural mouthwash, most people experience morning breath.
Bacteria found on teeth in the crevices and on the taste buds of the tongue, break down the food particles, which produce sulfur compounds. It is actually these sulfur compounds which give our breath a bad odor. During desk, your saliva helps to wash away bacteria and food particles. Your saliva also helps to dissolve the foul smelling sulfur compounds. Chronic, long-term mouth odor can be a sign of more serious illness. See your dentist if this is a concern.
People often respond to bleeding gums with the wrong method of treatment. Usually, gums that bleed are a symptom of the onset of periodontal disease or gingivitis. But often, people stop brushing as frequently and effectively because it may be painful or it may cause the gums to bleed again. However, when gums are inflamed, brushing could help reduce the inflammation.
More importantly, you should see your dentist to have a periodontal screening and recording performed in order to determine the level of disease present and the best treatment course to pursue.
It is also worth noting that chronic dental pain and discomfort are obvious signs of a problem. Over-the-counter drugs may provide some temporary relief. These medications usually only mask the existence of a problem and should be taken on a temporary basis.
It is important to see your dentist as soon as possible if your gums begin to bleed.
In the earlier states of gum disease (mild to moderate periodontitis), most treatment involves scaling and root planning. The procedure aims at removing plaque and calculus from the surface of the tooth adjacent to gum tissue.
In the majority of early gum disease cases, treatment entails improved home care techniques and scaling and root planning.
Advanced cases may require surgical treatment.
Sensitivity toothpaste, which contains strontium chloride or potassium nitrate are very effective in treating sensitive teeth. After a few weeks of use, you may notice a decrease in sensitivity. If you do not get relief by using desensitizing toothpaste, see your dentist.
Like other investments, if you whiten your teeth, the length of time you can expect it to last will vary.
If you smoke, drink red wine or coffee, or consume other acid-containing foods, your bright smile may begin to yellow more quickly than you expect.
In general, a teeth whitening procedure can last up to a few years. And even though the results can fade, occasional touch-ups can be done to regain luster.
A mouthguard can prevent injuries to your face and teeth. Most people benefit from wearing a mouthguard when playing any sport. The best mouthguards are custom-fitted by your dentist. This is especially important if you wear braces or fixed bridgework.
Commercial, ready-made mouthguards can be purchased at most sporting goods stores. They are relatively inexpensive but they are also less effective. In either case, rinse your mouthguard with water or mouthwash after each use. With proper care, it should last for several months. Ask your dentist which kind of mouthguard you should use.
Gingivitis is an infection within the gums caused by bacteria found in plaque. Research has established that people with diabetes are more prone to gum disease.
A diabetic’s body doesn’t respond as quickly to infection as a non-diabetic. If the infection persists, it can spread to the underlying bone that supports and anchors the teeth.
It has been shown that diabetics who keep their condition under control and maintain good oral hygiene have a far better chance of combating infections than those who are poorly controlled. Diabetes also delays the process of wound healing.
Be sure to see your dentist regularly for check-ups and follow home care recommendations. If you notice other conditions such as dry mouth or bleeding gums, be sure to talk with your dentist. And don't forget to mention any changes in medications.
About half of women who are pregnant experience a condition called pregnancy gingivitis. This condition can be uncomfortable and cause swelling, bleeding, redness or tenderness in the gum tissue.
Studies have shown a relationship between periodontal disease and preterm, low birth-weight babies. In fact, pregnant women with periodontal disease may be seven times more likely to have a baby that's born too early and too small.
Chemotherapy and Radiation can cause a number of problems in the mouth, some of which might include: mouth sores, infections, dry mouth, bleeding of the gums and lining of the mouth and general soreness and pain of the mouth. It can be harder to control these things while undergoing treatment as the immune system is generally compromised as a result of the treatment.
It is very important to see your dentist before treatment begins and then to continue with recommended follow-up care.
The potential problems from piercings are numerous. Some symptoms after a piercing include pain, swelling, infection, drooling, taste loss, scarring, chipped teeth, tooth loss, and an increased flow of saliva, none of which are particularly pleasant.
Tongue piercing can also cause excessive bleeding. If you're thinking of placing a piercing in or around your mouth, talk to your dentist first. If you already have piercings and are having problems, see your dentist right away