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Dental Information FAQ

Dental Information

Oral and maxillofacial surgery is the specialty of dental practice that deals with the diagnosis and surgical treatment of diseases, injuries and defects of the mouth, jaws, face and related structures. This includes the removal of impacted and decayed teeth, placement of dental implants, biopsy and removal of cysts and tumours of the mouth and jaws, treatment of facial trauma and reconstructive jaw surgery. General

If your jaws don’t meet correctly or your teeth just don’t seem to “fit” your jaws, you may have a bite problem that makes eating difficult. Your face may appear “out of balance” and you may not be happy with the way you look. The bones of your face and jaw may have grown that way from when you were a child or you may have experienced a traumatic injury that altered your appearance. Whatever the reason, these issues can be corrected and our Oral & Dentistry Surgery specialists are uniquely trained to create a more balanced appearance with teeth and jaws that function well together.

Periodontal Disease is a quiet disease that begins with little or no symptoms.  It is caused by bacteria that surrounds the teeth and enters the gums.  The immediate condition is known as ‘gingivitis’.  The gums become irritated, inflamed and often bleed.  If not properly treated, the condition worsens.  Noticeable symptoms now appear.  They include:
• Bad Breath
• Gum Recession
• Gum Sensitivity to Acidic Foods
• Abscesses
• Tooth Pain
• Tooth Loss

Periodontal Disease is a chronic condition that needs immediate attention.  Through a series of Periodontal Cleanings, Root Planning & Scaling, Laser Therapy and Local Antibiotics, this condition can be controlled.  Periodontal Surgery is only necessary for severe cases.

Sensitive teeth often come from the fact that your gums have slightly receded. This recession of the gum line allows the underlying dentin to show through which allows water and food easier access to the sensitive nerve. To manage this, there are a number of toothpastes, gels and even some dental procedures that can be applied. Speak to us in more detail if you have very sensitive teeth.

There are several ways in today’s Dental World to enhance your smile.  Certain procedures include:
• Tooth Whitening
• Bonding
• Porcelain Veneers
• Porcelain Crowns
We have the capability to improve your smile using all or some of these procedures. For an exact consultation, please contact our office so that we may provide you with a customized treatment plan.

• Staining of the teeth is very common, and seems to affect men more commonly than women. Some people naturally have slightly yellow or grey teeth, but this does not necessarily mean that they are not healthy.
• There are 2 main types of tooth stain from the outside (extrinsic) or inside (intrinsic)
• Extrinsic stains may be caused by:
o Poor oral hygiene, plaque stuck on teeth can turn yellow
o Foods, eg tea, coffee, berries, curry, red wine and colas
o Iron tablets may leave black marks
o Mouthwashes containing the antibacterial agent chlorhexidine, eg Cordosyl
• Intrinsic stains may be caused by:
o Degeneration - Older people can develop brown staining on the teeth as the enamel wears thin
o Antibiotics such as tetracycline
o Swallowing of excess flouride toothpaste by young children can cause white flecks on the teeth
• Combination stains:
o Smoking can cause a combination of surface and, over the long term, intrinsic staining of the tooth structure
o Tooth decay can cause both intrinsic and extrinsic staining
• What to do about it:
o Extrinsic staining is relatively straight forward to remove, with a thorough scale and polish by the dentist or Oral Hygenist. Whitening toothpastes may be effective but are not in contact with the teeth for long enough to lighten the colour
o Intrinsic staining involves tooth bleaching done by the dentist and different techniques are available on request. It is never permanent and it is like bleaching your hair, it has to be done regularly.

Porcelain Veneers are thin pieces of porcelain that go directly on your natural teeth. . This entire procedure can take as few as two visits.   Veneers change the size, shape and colour of a patient’s teeth.  This procedure is used to repair fractured teeth, teeth darkened by age or medication, or a crooked smile.  Many times, patients ask for Porcelain Veneers to simply feel and look younger with a straighter, whiter smile!

• We do x-rays to do a proper examination - what the eyes can't see they can't treat. X-rays reveal:
o Cavities and holes, under old fillings and between the teeth and under the gum line
o If there is bone loss between the teeth - that can lead to gum disease and loss of teeth
o If there are any hidden pathology, like oral cancer and the start of abscesses

Bonding is a cost effective procedure used to fill gaps in front teeth and to change a tooth’s colour.  The immediate results are amazing.  Within a few hours, you will have a great smile!  Bonding like Tooth Whitening may change colour over time due to coffee, tea, cola and wine.

When you lose a tooth in the front of your mouth, where the bone is very thin, the bone will usually melt away rather quickly, giving the appearance that the bone and/or gums are caving in, or collapsing. Very often this defect is visible when smiling. If you replace a front tooth with a traditional bridge, the replacement tooth looks like a false tooth as the gums and bone above it begin to collapse, leaving an obvious black space above the tooth.
When all of your posterior teeth are missing, the back of your mouth actually collapses as the bone deteriorates. The teeth in the front of your mouth begin to flare out as the entire bite collapses and the corners of your mouth droop. You appearance begins to change as the height of the jawbone decreases. If your posterior teeth are placed with a partial denture, the bone deterioration actually accelerates as the partial denture presses down on the gums and underlying bone when you eat.
When all of your teeth are missing, the jaw bone deteriorates rapidly. In addition, as the bone melts away your muscles migrate - or pull back - from their natural position. Your lips cave in as they lose bone support and wrinkles increase dramatically as your bony facial structures melt away.
Fortunately, there are techniques available that can replace bone that you may have already lost.

• We must brush our teeth at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste. The best is a soft bristle brush that can effectively remove the plaque and will not damage the gums.
• Floss at least once a day, best time is after your last meal. Flosses and dental tapes come in minty and other flavours, use the one you prefer. Just do it. A clever Professor once said "Only floss the ones you want to keep"

1. Use fluoride toothpaste.
2. Place your toothbrush at a slight angle towards your gums.
3. Use a gentle touch to remove plaque and bacteria.
4. Be sure to brush all surfaces of the teeth.
5. Gently brush your tongue to remove bad breath cousing bacteria

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