Archive for the ‘Tips of the Day’ Category
When choosing your ideal dental practice many factors should be considered. Contemporary advance in dental technology and techniques offer the potential to change your perception of dentistry.
Your journey should begin in a calm and relaxing setting with facilities suited to your individual needs. The Practice Team should ensure your comfort at all times, and be available to allay any concerns and provide you with education pertaining to any treatments requested or required.
Your Dentist should have the most up to date skill set which is achieved by attendance of post graduate training courses in the UK and abroad.
In the surgery facilities such as intra- oral cameras and plasma screen televisions will allow you to discover and visualise the findings of your clinical exam.
“A picture tells a thousand stories”
The surgery should offer the latest technology…
3D digital scans are now fully available which allow for capturing the most detailed diagnostic information. Dental Lasers have had much exposure in the media recently. Their exciting development offers the potential for drill free, anaesthetic free fillings which are ideal for children and dental phobics.
Remember your treatment continues once you have left the surgery.
Your practice should make regular contact as treatment commences to ensure you’re continued satisfaction and proper maintenance.
“Now that’s something we can all smile about”
A bite splint is used in the treatment of tempromandibular joint and occlusal (bite) problems. They aim to give you an “ideal bite” (occlusion) which in turn will reduce stress and strain on your jaw joint and and the muscles associated with the jaw, head and neck. A splint is initially worn as often as possible (ideally 24/7 for the first week) and requires periodic adjustment as the jaw joint and its associated muscles relax and the bite changes. Many patients report great improvements in clicks of the jaw, muscle pain, headaches, neck and shoulder problems.
Our hygienist here at our practice in Birmingham can ensure your gums remain healthy and your teeth remain clean and stain free. How often an individual requires hygeine treatment varies from patient to patient. Here at St Pauls Square we recall patient’s at 3, 6 and 12 month intervals for hygeine.
3 Months: We tend to recall people who are suffering or have suffered from periodontitis (destructive gum disease, see image on left), those who are very prone to staining, those who have undergone extensive restorative (crowns, veneers, big filliongs etc) treatment and those who are prone to rapid tartar build up between the teeth and under the gums.
6 Months: People attending every 6 months tend to be those not so prone to more advanced gum disease and suffer less from staining and tartar between and at the necks of the teeth.
12 Months: 12 month recalls are appropriate for those who suffer no significant gum disease and experince very minimal stain and tartar build up within the 12 month period.
“I’ve had a root canal treatment performed on one of my front teeth by my dentist 3 months ago but it doesn’t seem to have got any better and it still painful when i bite on it. My dentist has told me I would need an apicectomy(?) or would have to have the tooth removed. I don’t think I’m keen on either option! Is there anything else that can be done?”
Leigh S. Birmingham
Hi Leigh, without seeing xrays of the tooth in question I can’t give you a full answer. Something I would say is that at St Pauls Dental Practice we will often perform a “re-root canal” treatment before embarking on any more extreme measures. A root canal treatment should involve the complete disinfection of the WHOLE of the root of the tooth and placement of a dense rubber filling to make sure the root stays disinfected. Here’s an example treated here in Birmingham where a young lady had root canal treatment which didnt work. On the first xray you can see the thin long root filling doesn’t look like to fills the whole space of the root and there is evidence of persisting infection. I retreated this tooth and I’m sure the difference on the second xray is obvious! Hope this helps.
“I had crowns fitted 5 years ago and have noticed a black line by my gum. Obviously this is very embaraassing! Can anything be done?”
The most common reason for a black line around the margin of a crown is the metal which forms part of the crown’s substructure showing through. In the past these metal ceramic crowns have been used as they provide strength. Modern “All Ceramic metal-free” crowns can be just as strong and eliminate those black lines giving the ideal long-term aesthetic result!
Composite (white) fillings are the most aesthetic and natural direct restoration and dentist can place. Their popularity has increased significantly with increased concern over the safety and appearance of dental amalgam. Amalgam fillings have proved durable and are simple to place. White fillings are a great deal more technique sensitive and rely on the finest materials being used as well as meticulous technique on placement. Below is an example of a lady from Sutton Coldfield who presented at our practice complaining of sensitivity from a white filling placed 2 years previously. The filling was leaking (shown by the staining around the margins), had worn significantly and was unaesthetic. Damien replaced the filling and her symptoms disappeared and the tooth appeared “natural” again.
Tooth whitening can be a highly effective way of lightening the natural colour of your teeth without removing or altering the surface of the teeth. It is one of the most commonly performed cosmetic dental procedures, but before embarking on it you need to know if it is right for you.
Teeth that have become stained from age, coffee, tea or smoking are ideal candidates. Patients with healthy, natural, and unrestored teeth often achieve dazzling results. Teeth darkened with extrinsic, or surface stains, respond better to bleaching than deep, intrinsic discoloration caused by fluorosis or tetracycline. It is important to note that existing fillings, veneers, crowns and bridges will not change colour.
Many tooth whitening systems are available, all working under different time frames and with different concentrations of bleach. Instant “power whitening” involves the use of high concentrations of hydrogen peroxide activated by special light. The disadvantages of these procedures are that the strong bleaching agents can potentially cause damage to the gums, the teeth are possibly more sensitive afterwards and the results may fade more quickly than hoped.
At St Paul’s Square Dental Practice we use the Enlighten Evolution system. It is the only system in the world to guarantee that the teeth will get to a “VITA shade B1” which is the whitest shade on a regular dentist shade guide. The procedure is simple and takes 2 weeks for 95% of patients. We take a special impression of your teeth and send this to Enlighten Evolution’s dedicated lab where new “super sealed” bleaching trays are made. These trays are worn for 2 weeks before a visit to the practice is made for a 40 minute session under the dentist’s supervision. Amazingly, the super-sealed trays allow us to use lower concentrations of the whitening agent than most other systems, minimizing problems with sensitivity. The results are long lasting and can be maintained by periodic wear of the trays.