Where can I buy a mouthguard for sports?
It is possible to buy mouthguards from most sports stores, but it is important to note that these are not customised to fit your teeth. We recommend that you come in and have a customised mouthguard made at our dental practice instead. Custom-made mouthguards fit your teeth perfectly, are very comfortable to wear, and will give you optimal protection from sporting injuries. In fact, custom-made mouthguards protect the gums as well as the teeth, which means that they provide excellent protection during contact sports like rugby, hockey and boxing.
Can you wear a mouthguard with braces?
Yes, it is possible to wear a mouthguard even if you have braces. If you are undergoing orthodontic treatment and would like a mouthguard for protection during sports or to help resolve the impact of teeth grinding habit, we recommend that you come in and see us so that we can custom-make one for you. A custom-made mouthguard will fit your teeth properly and will offer you protection without causing any damage to your braces.
How do I stop grinding my teeth at night?
We offer mouthguards, also known as dental splints, which are designed to protect the teeth from damage caused by grinding. While a dental splint does not necessarily stop one from teeth grinding, it takes the pressure off the teeth and prevents them from being worn down or damaged. The muscles and ligaments in the mouth and jaw are also allowed to relax, which helps to relieve the tension and tightness in the facial muscles. If you suspect that you grind your teeth at night, we encourage you to come in and see us. We will let you know if a dental splint is a good option for you.
What are dental veneers made of?
We offer dental veneers, which are made from porcelain. Porcelain veneers are very natural looking, and they blend in well with the existing teeth. The porcelain material is also resistant to stains caused by foods and drinks, plus it has a very high resistance to chipping and other forms of damage. Although we offer porcelain veneers at our practice, they can also be made of resin composite materials. Resin composite veneers, however, are not as stain resistant as porcelain veneers and do not provide as natural a look.
What are dental veneers used for?
Dental veneers can be used for a number of purposes, and are a very effective means of concealing cosmetic imperfections, including chipped and worn-down teeth, stains and discolouration, unevenness and crookedness, and gaps between the teeth. Many people opt for dental veneers to achieve a straighter, more symmetrical smile. If you are concerned about a cosmetic issue that affects your smile, we recommend that you come in for a consultation. Your dentist will examine your teeth and determine whether dental veneers are the best option for your needs.
Do dental veneers damage your teeth?
No. During the process of having dental veneers placed, composite resin is used to bond them to your teeth, but this material does not cause any damage. When the veneers are bonded, your teeth will remain unharmed. In fact, veneers can protect the teeth from damage and stains because they are made from a very durable porcelain material. If you are concerned about the effect of dental veneers on your teeth, we encourage you to come in for a consultation. Your dentist will answer any questions that you might have and explain exactly what the process involves before you proceed with treatment.
Do amalgam fillings cause teeth to crack?
Yes, it is possible for amalgam fillings to cause teeth to crack. Amalgam fillings expand and contract quite considerably in reaction to hot and cold temperatures, which can lead to cracks and fractures in the teeth. For this reason, we offer composite resin fillings at My Dental Care @ West End. Tooth coloured fillings made of composite resin are not affected by the temperature changes caused by the foods and drinks that we consume, so the risk of cracks is much lower than with silver amalgam fillings. They are also more aesthetically pleasing, which is an added benefit.
Why do teeth crack?
Teeth can crack for a number of reasons, although in many cases, there is no obvious cause or explanation. Some of the possible causes of cracks in the teeth include grinding or clenching the teeth, and alignment and bite problems that result in too much pressure being placed on the tooth. Teeth that have particularly large silver amalgam fillings also tend to be more prone to cracks, as do teeth that have undergone a root canal treatment in the past.
Do hairline cracks in teeth heal?
Unfortunately, hairline cracks in the teeth are not able to heal themselves. If you have a tiny hairline crack in your tooth, however, it may not be necessary to have it repaired, especially if it is not causing any pain or affecting your appearance in any way. We do recommend, however, that you come in for a consultation so that your dentist can advise you as to whether or not treatment is required. Sometimes a crown may be placed on the affected tooth, while in other cases your dentist may recommend a bonding procedure. The treatment that is best for you will depend on the severity of your crack, as well as its location.
Is it possible to prevent bad breath by brushing my teeth?
Yes, lack of brushing is actually a leading cause of bad breath. When food particles are left in the mouth and bacteria is trapped on the tongue, an unpleasant odour can begin to develop. One of the best ways to avoid this and keep your mouth free from food particles and bacteria is to brush and floss regularly. Practising good oral hygiene on a daily basis is the first step to keeping bad breath under control. Don’t forget to clean your tongue every time you brush your teeth!
What kinds of foods can cause bad breath?
Any foods that create a smell when they are ingested can cause bad breath. These include garlic, onions and certain spicy foods. Foods that are high in sugar and acid also tend to increase the production of bacteria in the mouth, which can intensify the bad odour. Coffee and alcohol can also cause temporary bad breath. If you do enjoy these foods and drinks, be sure to maintain your oral hygiene afterwards by brushing and flossing, and keeping your tongue clean and free from bacteria build-up.
Could my dentures be contributing to my bad breath?
Yes, it is possible for dentures to cause bad breath if they are not properly cleaned. If dentures are not thoroughly cleaned on a regular basis, they can become a breeding ground for bacteria. This can cause an unpleasant odour. If you have dentures, it is important that you brush them regularly in order to remove any stubborn food particles, as well as any plaque that has built up. We also recommend that you brush your gums and tongue every morning before you insert your dentures. This will help to maintain good oral health, and prevent bad breath.
When should I take my baby/child to the dentist?
As soon as children start having their baby teeth. Ideally the first visit should be before your child needs any dental treatment. Regular check-ups help to create positive experiences at the dentist and reduce dental phobia.
How does my oral health affect my overall wellness?
Gum disease is linked to a host of illnesses including heart disease, diabetes, respiratory disease, osteoporosis, and rheumatoid arthritis. People with gum disease were twice as likely to die from a heart attack and three times as likely to have a stroke than other healthy people.
Is flossing really necessary?
Yes! Roughly 40% of your tooth surface is in between your teeth, regular use of dental floss or inter dental brushes to clean in between your teeth are recommended. This is the area where food and plaque are easily trapped, but your toothbrush cannot reach.
Are sports drinks dental friendly?
Most soft drinks, sport drinks and energy drinks on the market are nearly as corrosive as battery acid! Excessive consumption of soft drinks can easily cause dental erosion and “melt” your teeth.
I am very scared of the dentist, what are my options?
At My Dental Care @ West End, we offer Happy Gas. Happy Gas (Nitrous Oxide) is a modern technique of sedation, which makes dental treatment a more pleasant experience. It is suitable for nearly all patients, young and old, healthy or not so healthy and particularly for those with mild to moderate anxiety or worries.
What are the early warning signs of Oral Cancer?
Early symptoms of oral cancer include: a sore in the mouth or throat that does not heal; a lump and a red or white patch found anywhere in the mouth; unusual pain or bleeding; swelling of the mouth; and any difficulty or discomfort felt in chewing or swallowing.
What is Periodontitis?
It is a group of oral conditions all involving the inflammation of the gums and tooth-supporting structures. Periodontitis is caused by bacteria that stick to both the teeth and gum line, causing an infection. As a result, the body produces substances to fight off the infection.
However, these substances along with the toxins produced by the bacteria, can cause damage to the jawbone and ligament surrounding the teeth. The gums begin to pull away from the teeth, allowing for pockets to form between your gums and teeth, which provide a breeding ground for even more bacteria. If not treated timeously, the teeth may become loose and eventually fall out. Those most at risk are older people, diabetics, and smokers.
What are the symptoms of Periodontitis?
- Inflamed, red gums
- Sensitive gums tender to the touch
- Development of spaces between the teeth allowing for the formation of periodontal pockets
- Foul breath
- Foul taste in the mouth
- Teeth that are loose and don’t fit together upon biting
Early symptoms of oral cancer include: a sore in the mouth or throat that does not heal; a lump and a red or white patch found anywhere in the mouth; unusual pain or bleeding; swelling of the mouth, and any difficulty or discomfort felt in chewing or swallowing.
What treatment is used for periodontitis?
Treatment depends on the classification of periodontitis as being either mild, moderate or severe.
This requires a type of cleaning called scaling and root planning, which works to remove the build-up of plaque and tartar from your teeth, as well as make it difficult for bacteria to grow in the roots of your teeth.
Surgery may be required to reshape your gums or regrow the destroyed bone.
This requires surgery, and sometimes antibiotics. Teeth may also be extracted if they cannot be saved.
When should I start flossing my child’s teeth?
It is recommended that when they are a toddler that you should start flossing teeth that touch together and continue to floss their teeth until they are 6 years old.
How can I make brushing teeth interesting for my child?
We understand that brushing teeth can often be a boring task that no one feels like doing. It is important that your child also brushes for at least 2 minutes. One way is choosing one of their favourite songs that has a duration of over 2 minutes. This will help to making the brushing experience more enjoyable.
When can I introduce adult-strength toothpaste with fluoride for my child?
It is recommended that you only introduced adult-strength toothpaste when your child is around 6 years of age. Until then use child-strength fluoride toothpaste.