ProceduresOur gentle staff carry out the following...
A dental examination usually takes about 20 minutes.
It starts with taking a thorough dental and medical history and personal details. ALL of these details are kept in secure storage and are strictly confidential.
Radiographs (X-rays) are usually taken at the same appointment.
A detailed treatment plan is presented and explained and an estimate of costs and then a proposed treatment plan is printed off for the patient to take away with them.
Signs of Gum Disease:
Gums bleed when you brush or floss
Gums are red and/or puffy
You have persistent bad breath
You are getting “long in the tooth” – when the gums are shrinking away from the teeth.
Your teeth are becoming loose.
Smokers are 2-3 times more likely to suffer gum disease
Increased alcohol intake
Increased caffeine intake
Pregnancy due to hormone changes
A healthy mouth means fresh breath! Bad breath can affect those who are close to us and can strain relationships. The main culprit is bacteria. Our mouths are full of billions of bacteria, and they inhabit all of it including teeth, gums, tongue, dentures, plaque and tartar etc. Some are very good at producing offensive odours. These bacteria thrive in a “dirty mouth”.
How to Prevent Gum Disease & Bad Breath:
Daily tooth brushing and flossing
Brushing your tongue
Using an appropriate mouth rinse
Seeing your Dentist or Hygienist regularly
A hygienist or dental therapist is specifically trained to treat gum problems and to scale teeth. They can also instruct on appropriate home oral hygiene techniques.
Wisdom Teeth Removal
Why don’t my wisdom teeth fit my mouth?
There are a few theories as to why wisdom teeth don’t fit many people’s mouths. Some experts think genetics may play a part – for example you may have inherited one parent’s large teeth and the other parent’s small jaw. Another theory suggests the size of our mouths have decreased over the centuries, because our diet has changed and our jaws don’t need to be as large and strong as they were in prehistoric times.
Impacted wisdom teeth can become a constant source of infection and have the potential for an acute “flare up”.
Do I need to have my wisdom teeth removed?
Your wisdom teeth only need to be removed if they cause problems.
Wisdom teeth can be very difficult to clean, and are prone to tooth decay, gum disease, and recurring infections.
Cysts and tumours can develop in tissues around impacted wisdom teeth.
If your wisdom teeth are unable to erupt they may damage other teeth.
At Gentle Dental our dentist will remove the majority of third molars (wisdom teeth). A referral can be arranged to a specialist for more complicated cases.
Will it hurt?
Surgical removal of wisdom teeth can cause more discomfort than simple extractions.
You may experience the following temporary symptoms for up to one week following extractions:
- Some swelling and minor bleeding
- Difficulty in fully opening your mouth
- A change of sensation or numbness of your lip or chin
If you have a “problem” that you think might be associated with your wisdom teeth such as pain or a bad taste in the back of your mouth; or swelling under your jaw line, then you may have an infection in the area around your wisdom tooth. This can usually be alleviated by antibiotics and irrigation at your first emergency appointment. Follow up consultations and X-rays however will usually be required to determine if this is going to be a recurring problem.
Root canal treatment (root filling) is the last treatment that can be performed on a tooth to keep it in your mouth if the nerve becomes irreversibly inflamed or infected.
This can be caused by:
- Deep fillings
- Tooth fracture
What happens during root canal treatment?
- An examination with X-rays and special tests to assess the health of the dental pulp and surrounding tissues.
- Usually a RUBBER DAM is placed over tooth to isolate it from bacteria in the mouth.
- Access to the root canals is gained by drilling a hole through the top of the tooth.
- The root canal is measured for length and then cleaned and shaped with fine dental files. The root canals are also washed with sterilising solution.
- The root canals are then sealed near to their tip with a permanent filling.
- The tooth is then restored back to normal function.
- The treatment may take several visits to complete with temporary fillings and dressings placed in the tooth between visits.
- Antibiotics are sometimes prescribed if there is an infection present.
Is root canal treatment painful?
Local anaesthetic and modern painkillers are used to provide comfortable treatment. Usually painful symptoms improve once treatment is started.
No one needs to know that you are missing your natural teeth. Dentures and partial dentures are used to replace areas where there are no natural teeth.
If all teeth are missing, then we can make a Full Denture…either an upper or lower or both.
If teeth need to be extracted before a denture is inserted we can do that too, and we can make you an Immediate Denture so that you will not have to go around “toothless”.
A Partial Denture only replaces natural teeth when there are still several natural teeth in the mouth. A partial denture can be made in all acrylic or a combination of chrome/cobalt metal and acrylic for a superior fit.
We do our best to see emergencies for our regular patients on the same day. If for some reason we can’t, then we can usually prescribe some medication to tide you through until an appointment can be made.
ACCIDENTS: If you have had an accident and have sustained damage to your teeth, gums, jaw or anywhere related to these structures you will need to seek treatment as soon as possible. ACC will normally cover part of the cost of an accident but there is usually a private excess fee.
If you have sustained a traumatic knock to any of these structures, but you have no obvious damage, it is still best to get it examined by a dentist and also registered with ACC. Teeth can get “concussion” from trauma and may “die” on you without you knowing. It may be some time later before this becomes obvious. ACC will not normally recognise claims made for an accident over 6 months old. We can examine and register an ACC claim at the first appointment.
TOOTH KNOCKED OUT: If a tooth is accidentally knocked right out of its socket, it is important that it is put back as soon as possible. Clean it by all means by running it under tap water for a few seconds and then reimplant it in the socket. If this is not possible, then at least get the patient to keep the tooth in the mouth (preferably the cheek) so that the cells stay alive. You must then get to a dentist or emergency services as soon as possible. Timing is critical for the survival of the tooth, and the shorter the time the better. The tooth will most likely need to be splinted and antibiotics prescribed.
TOOTHACHE: If you have a toothache you should see your dentist as soon as possible for diagnosis and treatment. If the toothache is acute and pain relief does not work, then you will need emergency treatment. Most toothaches are relieved either by removing the pulp in the tooth (requiring a ROOT CANAL at a later appointment) or extracting the offending tooth.