How Cosmetic Dentistry Help Improve Your Smile

A bright smile is always refreshing since it exudes self-confidence and happiness. However, there are some who, even though they have healthy teeth and gums, find it hard to smile. There’s just something that prevents them from fully expressing their smiles. It may be due to discoloured, misaligned or missing teeth or something else that they find less than satisfactory with their smile.

This is where cosmetic dentistry comes in. Whereas traditional dentistry focuses on the health and well-being of a person’s teeth and gums, cosmetic dentistry focuses on improving the appearance of the teeth and gums. Cosmetic dentistry can help you have the smile you want.

Depending on what you want to improve, there are some treatments that dentists are able to provide:

Teeth Whitening

Smoking, tea, coffee, red wine, medicines, and other things we consume stain our teeth. This causes teeth to lose their natural brightness and healthy lustre. Dentists can recommend take-home products or provide a teeth whitening service at the clinic. Teeth can be stained again unless staining substances are completely avoided – which is quite difficult with our modern lifestyles. Teeth whitening products are not replacement for daily oral hygiene.

Veneers

Veneers are ultra-thin materials that are used to cover the surface of a tooth to hide discolouration that resist teeth whitening methods, or improve the shape of the tooth. Veneers can be used to close small gaps between teeth, even teeth height, or cover up chips and irregular shapes of teeth. Direct veneers made from resin/plastic bonded directly to the tooth. Ceramic veneers are custom crafted shells that are then bonded to the tooth.

Dental Implants

Dental implants are used to replace missing teeth and are an alternative to dentures. A biocompatible titanium fixture is first surgically implanted to replace the missing tooth’s root structure. A replacement tooth or crown is then attached to the implant. Unlike dentures, dental implants are not removable, but can still be sculpted to look like natural teeth.

Crowns and Bridges

Crowns are used when a tooth is weakened by trauma, dental decay, or root canal treatment. Crowns are also used to protect broken or worn teeth. The tooth is covered to prevent further damage and loss. The crown also strengthens the tooth by providing additional structural support.

Bridges are used to replace missing teeth. A replacement tooth is held in place by crowns attached to the remaining healthy teeth on either side of the replacement tooth.

Orthodontic Braces and Aligners

Traditional metal braces and more modern clear aligners can be used to realign teeth and treat issues with spacing, crowding, and overlapping. Braces can also treat irregular bite and improve jaw positioning. With traditional metal braces, metal brackets are attached to the teeth and wire is threaded through them. The braces then exert pressure to slowly reposition the teeth. Since metal braces cannot be removed for a few months, regular oral hygiene becomes even more important.

Unlike traditional metal braces, clear aligners use a series of custom-made aligners to slowly move the teeth into place. Clear aligners are nearly invisible, removable and more comfortable.

Not everyone can have natural beautiful smiles. Cosmetic dentistry can provide you with the confidence and self-esteem to give the smile that is truly yours.

Tips on Getting Over Dental Anxiety

A trip to the dentist can be a stressful, or even frightening, experience for some people. Dental anxiety can stem from various reasons; a traumatic experience to the dentist in the past or a psychological condition that triggers a fear response are just some examples of why people dread going to the dentist.

This type of fear isn’t uncommon either. A professor from the University of Oslo’s Section for Paediatric Dentistry and Behavioural Science stated that nearly 20 per cent of the population of Norway has some degree of fear when going to the dentist. As a result, many people tend to put off going to the dentist because of this kind of mind set.

Fortunately, there are many ways to help overcome this fear. Here are just some simple tips that you can use to achieve this:

Set up an appointment with your dentist beforehand.  Getting to know your dentist before the actual procedure can help alleviate any anxiety you may have about it. During this meeting, you can freely discuss everything there is about your upcoming visit – the procedure, your fears and the tools that the dentist will be using. On the other hand, this can also be an opportunity to simply have a chat with your dentist and just get to know one another better. What’s important here is that you’re able to establish a level of trust and rapport, so that you won’t have any apprehensions once the procedure starts.

Bring someone with you. Having someone go with you to the dentist is a good way to help stay calm during your appointment. A family member or a close friend who can help walk you through the experience and understand your fears can be quite reassuring. And, if the dentist allows it, you can even have that person stay with you in the room while the dentist is working on you. Just knowing that you have someone close by for support can make a big difference.

Wear noise-cancelling headphones. Many people find the noise of dentist tools really disconcerting. Once the sound of the drill starts, it’s hard to ignore, especially if it triggers a fear response from you. Good quality headphones can help block out the sounds and make everything more bearable.

Request for an anaesthetic if you can’t handle the pain.  The dentist can offer various options to manage any pain that you may have during your visit. Topical anaesthetics, laser drills or electrical nerve blocks are just some of the possible solutions that can be used during a procedure. Be sure to discuss these options with your dentist, so you can be more at ease once it begins.

Make sure you’re sitting comfortably in the chair. As simple as this sounds, many people’s anxiety is actually intensified when they realize that they’re sitting in an awkward position. Whether you prefer to lie on your back, sit halfway back or totally upright, resting in a comfortable position can help make the experience better. Don’t be shy about asking your dentist which sitting position can best help you feel at ease. Some dentists will even offer you a pillow to help cushion your back from any aches that can pop up during a long procedure.

Ultimately, the most important thing that can help ease your fears is to find a dentist that you trust. Allowing someone to work on your teeth can be considered a very personal experience. Having someone that you can trust for your dentist is a great way to come out of this experience with a bigger and better smile in the end.

Everything You Need to Know about Dental Veneers

Dental veneers are very thin layers of material used to cover the surface of teeth. They are used to address issues like discoloration, chips, cracks, uneven height of teeth, irregular shape, and small gaps between teeth. While normally used for cosmetic treatment of teeth, veneers can also be used to fix minor bite related issues. Once applied, veneers look and function like natural teeth, and can stand up to the normal stresses that the original teeth are subjected to. Veneers can last from 5 to 10 years before needing to replace them.

Preparation for veneers requires the removal of some tooth enamel. While veneers can be adjusted or remade and applied, the tooth cannot be returned to its original condition. This may be a point to consider for people who have healthy teeth and are considering getting dental veneers. They are not a good choice for individuals with unhealthy teeth, active gum disease, or weakened teeth (either from dental fractures or tooth decay).

Types of Veneers                                                                                                                                    

Direct veneers are made from resin/plastic that is bonded directly to teeth. Direct veneers can be used to hide small imperfections and improve the colour of teeth. Normally, no preparation is required for direct veneers. It is also less expensive than ceramic veneers. However, it is not as durable as ceramic veneers and is more prone to chipping, breaking, and staining. On the other hand, damage to direct veneers is repairable. They may not be applicable to severely stained or irregular teeth, but they can also be used temporarily while awaiting the fitting of ceramic veneers.

Ceramic veneers are thin ceramic shells that are then bonded to teeth. Ceramic veneers can be used when the stains resist whitening, or on teeth that have cracks or irregular contours. They are more durable than direct veneers and can resist staining. These veneers require several visits for preparation and fitting. They are also more expensive compared to direct veneers. Any damage to ceramic veneers will require replacement.

Caring for Veneers

  • Veneers should be given the same care as natural teeth. Regular brushing and flossing are enough to keep the veneer clean. Non-abrasive fluoride toothpaste is recommended by dentists. Veneers can still suffer from tooth decay and having good dental hygiene is recommended if you want to keep them well maintained.
  • Due to the removal of tooth enamel, sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures may be experienced. As a result, you might want to avoid eating anything within these extremes.
  • Bad habits like clenching or grinding of teeth, as well as biting hard materials (fingernails, ice, etc.) can also damage veneers.
  • Ceramic veneers resist stains and, after some time, they will look whiter than natural teeth. Teeth whitening should be considered before treatment and regularly scheduled after treatment for an even coloured smile.
  • Regular visits to the dentist should also be done for cleaning and so that the dentist can also check the veneer for any signs of damage.

Veneers are versatile solutions for most cosmetic needs. The dentist will be able to give advice on other dental options if veneer is inappropriate or inadvisable for the desired outcome.

Dental Implants or Dentures: Which Should I Choose?

Replacing a lost tooth isn’t as difficult to manage as it was in the past. Today, there are various options that a person can choose if they happen to lose a tooth due to an accident, dental fractures or tooth decay. Two of the most common solutions that people tend to use are dental implants and dentures. However, the choice of which one to get isn’t as simple.

When considering how to get back your confident smile, you have to weigh both the pros and cons of each choice and see which one best suits your needs.

Dentures

Also known as “false teeth”, these are replacement teeth that are usually made out of porcelain, acrylic or cast metal. Making dentures requires the dentist to create a mould of your teeth and jaw, which will help create the tooth shapes, sizes and colour that can best fit your mouth. An initial fitting is then done to make sure that the dentures fit comfortably. Afterwards, subsequent appointments may be scheduled to account for any adjustments that need to be made.

Pros:

  • Can be completed quickly after the initial fitting
  • Cheaper option compared to dental implants
  • Recommended for those with a weak jaw or sensitive gums

Cons:

  • Requires constant maintenance in terms of cleaning
  • Doesn’t last as long as dental implants; recommended replacement period every five years or so
  • Can be dislodged while eating or chewing, especially if dental adhesive loses its strength
  • May feel uncomfortable if not fitted properly

Dental Implants

Compared to dentures, dental implants are considered to be the more permanent solution for tooth replacements. It starts with an artificial root made of titanium that is surgically set in the bone socket and jaw. The dental implant eventually fuses with the jawbone over a period of three to four months. Afterwards, a replacement tooth is placed and sculpted on top of the implant to support the crown or bridge. The end result is a fully functional and natural-looking tooth.

Pros:

  • More secure tooth replacement that can’t be moved or dislodged
  • Can be sculpted to look like a natural tooth
  • Can be cleaned and maintained like natural teeth
  • Less prone to cavities since it’s made of titanium and affixed to a crown or denture where cavities can’t occur

Cons:

  • Relatively high cost difference compared to dentures
  • The surgical nature of the procedure can be difficult for people with weak gums and jaws
  • Surgery can lead to complications like excessive bleeding
  • Requires more time to complete compared to dentures

So which Should I Choose?

Dental implants are a popular choice for people with healthy gums and prefer a long-term solution for their missing teeth. With proper oral hygiene, dental implants can last for as long as 20 years without having to replace it. With a good set of gums and a healthy jaw, dental implants can even serve as a good base that can support several missing teeth.

On the other hand, for those with weak jaws and gums, it’s probably safer to make use of dentures instead. The procedure needed to install dental implants can really tax a person’s gums and jaws. You also have to consider that dental implants tend to cost more than dentures. As such, you have to consider these factors when choosing whether to go with dental implants or dentures.

Dental Implants: A Lasting Solution to Missing Teeth

Sometimes, you can’t help but lose a tooth by accident, no matter how careful you try to be. It could happen on a completely average day, such as by eating hard food or getting hit in the mouth while playing a sport. In many cases, though, most people lose their teeth because they’ve neglected to maintain good oral hygiene. If the thought of using dentures makes you cringe, fear not. You can replace your missing tooth with affordable and painless dental implant procedures in Queensland. Are you still unsure if this is a good option for you? Read on to find out exactly what this procedure is like and what you should expect going in.

 

What Are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are used as replacements for missing tooth roots. They act as a strong foundation or anchor that can bond with your jawbone, enabling the dentist to give you a permanent replacement tooth. Implants are usually made of titanium because it is a biocompatible material that the body easily accepts. The crowns placed on the implant are made of ceramic, porcelain fused to metal, gold alloys, or base metal alloys, depending on the patient’s needs.

 

What Should I Expect During the Dental Implant Procedure?
First, you’ll need to consult a general dentist or prosthodontist to get a comprehensive exam. Your dentist will review your entire dental and medical history to determine how to best treat you. In order to make a model for your replacement tooth, the dentist will take X-rays and make impressions of your teeth and gums. Your dentist may also ask for a CT scan to figure out how much of your jawbone is available for holding implants in place. Should you not have enough available bone in your jaws, your dentist will work out a treatment plan to help you build up the bone. In cases like these, you may either have to go for bone grafting or bone distraction. The former procedure requires getting some bone from a different part of the body and adding it to the jaw. The latter procedure involves pulling apart existing bone with screws and pins in order to force the body to grow more bone.

 

Then, your dentist will make an opening in your jawbone to make room for the implant. Next, the implant will be placed in that newly created space. Afterward, your dentist will use a screw to attach an abutment to the implant. Abutments are usually made of porcelain, titanium, or even gold, and will connect the crown to the implant. To finish the process, your dentist will screw or cement a crown onto the abutment. Your dentist will also cover up the screw hole using a composite that matches the colour of your teeth.

 

How Long Will the Entire Dental Implant Process Take?

The length of time will differ from patient to patient, as the severity of the problem is not the same for everyone. Generally speaking, the entire process (including surgery and putting in the crown) takes around five months for dental implants placed in the lower jaw. Meanwhile, it could take around six months for any implants installed in the upper jaw. If the patient needs to build up more bone, however, he or she may need at least twelve months or more.

 

What Are the Benefits of Dental Implants?

The biggest advantage is the fact that they look and feel almost exactly like your natural teeth. This means that won’t have to worry about people taking awkward glances at your replacement tooth. Dental implants are also permanent, and thus, your replacement tooth will not slide within your mouth, unlike dentures. Your speech will also be unimpaired since your replacement tooth won’t slip around and make you slur or mumble by accident. You’ll also be able to eat more easily since your replacement tooth won’t move around as you chew. Dental implants are also perfect for those who want to keep most of their teeth intact. This is because there is no need to reduce any of the teeth near the implant site. The best part is that dental implants are incredibly durable. They may cost quite a bit upfront, but they will last you a lifetime with proper care and maintenance.

 

Are Implants the Replacement Solution for You?

 

Still on the fence about getting dental implants? It all depends on how comfortable you are with the idea of it. Of course, there are other options, such as bridges and dentures. However, if you want the best replacements money can buy, dental implants are your best bet. Though implants may sound rather intimidating at first, they are a great way to get that perfect smile back. Should you be interested in getting some dental implants, make sure that you find a dentist that you are comfortable with. This will make the entire process much less stressful and increase your rate of success at the same time.

Invisalign vs. Braces: Which Orthodontic Devices Are for You?

In today’s society, many people consider straight teeth to be essential for a beautiful and confident smile. But if you have a misaligned bite or a crooked tooth, it can be hard not to feel self-conscious about how you look. Fortunately, there are quite a number of affordable and effective options available to solve those kinds of dental issues. Braces have been around for ages, and while they’re effective, they do come with their own set of problems. However, in recent years, many patients have started getting Invisalign treatments in Highgate Hill as a less painful and more convenient alternative. That said, how do you decide which option to go for? In this article, we’ll outline the pros and cons of both orthodontic devices.

 

How Do Braces Work?

Braces are usually made up of brackets, orthodontic bands, spacers, and arch wires. They are installed on a patient’s teeth in order to slowly move them in a desired direction. This happens because the braces apply continuous pressure on the patient’s teeth for a long period of time. As the braces apply pressure to the teeth, the bone also changes shape until the desired alignment is achieved. To keep your teeth from shifting back to their original positions, you may need to wear retainers after your treatment is complete.

 

The Benefits of Braces

  • Since you can’t remove them, you won’t be tempted to leave them out like you would with Invisalign options. This makes braces a great option for those who feel that they don’t have enough self-discipline to maintain their dental care habits.
  • Though you could use a water pick for better cleaning, you only need to maintain your current brushing and flossing habits to keep braces clean.
  • Braces are still better suited for more complicated issues such as rotating cylindrical teeth, vertical movements, and fixing common bite problems.

 

The Drawbacks of Braces

  • Braces can feel quite uncomfortable, which makes wearing them 24/7 almost unbearable for some people. There is also a chance that the wires or brackets can come loose and hurt your cheek, gums, or tongue.
  • You won’t be able to eat all of the food that you want. In particular, you’ll have to avoid anything that’s hard or sticky. Otherwise, bits of food may get caught in your brace’s wires and brackets.
  • Most patients need to wear braces for an average of two years. Those with more complex alignment issues may need to wear them for longer than that.

 

How Does Invisalign Work?

Invisalign makes use of custom-made plastic aligners to gradually straighten your teeth. To make aligners, orthodontists create a three-dimensional image of your teeth by taking several impressions, pictures, and x-rays. Based on this data, they will come up with a treatment plan outlining exactly how your teeth will move at each stage of treatment. Unlike braces, which cannot be removed and are tightened regularly, you’ll use a new set of aligners every two weeks until you finish the treatment. As with braces, you may need to wear retainers to maintain your straightened teeth.

 

The Benefits of Invisalign

  • You can eat whatever you want. All you have to do is remove the aligners before you eat or drink anything. Thus, there’s no way that bits of food can get caught in your aligners, which makes cleaning them so much easier.
  • They’re practically invisible, so you won’t have to worry about other people knowing that you’re undergoing tooth correction. This is great for people who feel self-conscious about the way their teeth look.
  • You can also remove your aligners whenever you want. This means that you won’t have to deal with constant pain from the pressure on your teeth.

 

The Drawbacks of Invisalign

  • While wearing your aligners, you need to be careful not to drink or eat anything hot. Otherwise, your aligners may end up warped because of the heat. You’ll also need to avoid any liquids that could stain your aligners.
  • Because you can take your aligners out, you may end up misplacing them, especially if you’re out eating at a restaurant.
  • Invisalign is not suitable for all types of teeth alignment issues. While they are effective with many common cases, more severe problems are better treated with braces. Make sure to consult with your orthodontist about whether you qualify for this treatment or not.

 

Pick the Option That Feels Right for You

Each person’s dental needs are vastly different. What may work for one person may not necessarily be as effective for you. Do your research and ask people you know for their personal experiences with these orthodontic devices. Shop around with different dental clinics and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Both braces and Invisalign are hefty investments, so take your time to choose the best choice for your specific dental needs. Though it seems like a lot of effort at first, you’ll be sure to get the great smile and straight teeth you’ve always wanted.

Saving a Bad Tooth with Root Canal Therapy

Even the most diligent of people forget to brush or floss their teeth from time to time. But if you haven’t been getting regular check-ups with your dentist, you’re at risk for some serious dental health issues. You may end up with mouth sores, suffer from inflamed gums, or even lose a tooth due to infection or decay. If you’re afraid of losing your teeth, there may still be a way to save them. In this article, we’ll discuss the usual root canal treatment procedure, and why you may want to consider it.

 

Root Canals, Infection, and Tooth Decay
Inside of your tooth is a space called the pulp chamber. This is where you can find the root canal system as well as the dental pulp, which contains connective tissues, blood vessels, and nerves. It makes up the soft core of your teeth and extends from your crown all the way down to the tips of the roots. If your tooth gets chipped or cracked, bacteria can get into it, causing the pulp inside to become infected or inflamed. Patients with inflamed dental pulps experience intense pain due to the swelling and pressure inside of the affected teeth. Over time, this can cause the pulp to die and the tooth to decay. While the pain may go away temporarily, the infection can spread to surrounding tissues and bone, resulting in serious illnesses.

 

Symptoms of Infected Root Canals

While not an exhaustive list, some of the most common symptoms of infected root canals include the following:

  • holes in the tooth
  • toothaches
  • swelling of the gums
  • increased sensitivity to temperature
  • swelling around the face and neck

 

Does Root Canal Therapy Hurt?

Though they do involve your tooth’s nerve endings, this procedure is relatively painless thanks to advancements in dental technology and anaesthetics. In fact, getting root canal therapy can greatly reduce the pain you may already be feeling due to an infected tooth. To control the pain, your dentist will administer a local anaesthetic to numb the tooth and the surrounding area. Though it will take some time to take effect, your dentist won’t start the treatment until the tooth feels completely numb. He or she will also check in with you regularly to make sure you’re comfortable and don’t feel any pain.

 

How Root Canal Therapy Works
Root canal therapy involves cleaning the canals inside the root of the affected tooth. Dentists will take X-rays of your teeth to determine how bad the damage has become. They will also review your dental and medical history in order to give you the best and safest treatment possible. If you’re anxious about the surgery, ask your dentist for anti-anxiety medication or oral sedatives to help you calm down.

 

During the actual procedure, dentists numb the tooth and nearby tissue by injecting a local anaesthetic. Then, they place a dental dam over the affected tooth keep bacteria away from the affected tooh, ensuring a sterile working environment. Dentists then use an endodontic file to drill an access hole through the tooth’s crown in order to reach the pulp chamber and root canals. They then use special tools to remove the diseased or dead tissue. After disinfecting the canals using antibacterial and antiseptic solutions, dentists use small flexible instruments to shape the canals. This is so that the canals can properly receive any fillings and sealers your tooth may need. Once done, the dentist will remove any remaining debris in the root canals with another thorough cleaning.

 

With the canals ready for filling, dentists will fill them in using a thermoplastic material called gutta-percha. This is done to keep the canals from getting infected again after the procedure is done. Then, the dentists will seal the access hole with temporary or permanent filling material. Should the tooth be unable to keep its filling in place, a metal or plastic post may be placed in one of the canals. After the surgery, patients may be prescribed to take antibiotics to keep infection at bay. Patients may also need over-the-counter medication like aspirin or ibuprofen to manage any pain or discomfort. Eventually, the patient will need to completely seal the affected tooth by having an artificial clown installed in the future.

 

Is Root Canal Therapy for Me?
If you want to save your affected tooth, root canal therapy is exactly what you need. Otherwise, the best alternative is to completely remove the affected tooth and replace it with something else. You could choose to get partial dentures, but they tend to slide around inside of your mouth, causing pain and discomfort, especially while eating. You could also opt for dental implants, but you’ll have to say goodbye to your natural tooth. If you’re still unsure, you could always consult with your dentist on the best treatment for your specific case.

What Causes Gum (Periodontal) Diseases?

Has it ever occurred to you what it is really like to have gum disease? You might already be aware of the fact that poor oral hygiene can have a significant impact on the health of a person’s gums. However, there are also risk factors that you might want to know about. Read on to find out what they are.

 

What is gum disease anyway?

 

Gum disease is actually a set of conditions that affect the periodontal tissues and supporting structures of the teeth. In medical parlance, these condition are known as periodontal diseases. The most common of these include gingivitis, which is inflammation of the gums, and peridontitis, which is a more advanced form of gum disease.

 

Gingivitis is an early-stage gum disease that causes gums to swell and become painful or tender. Usually, the gums are characterized by bright red or purple discolouration, and they could bleed after being brushed and washed. The affected individual may also experience consistent bad breath or halitosis.

 

Periodontitis, on the other hand, involves not just these symptoms because other supporting structures that surround the teeth are also affected. In people with this condition, the gums usually recede because of damage to soft tissues, and pockets between the teeth and the gums can appear. If the disease has progressed to an even more advanced stage, loss of teeth is also possible.

 

Why do periodontal diseases occur?

 

The simplest answer would be because our mouths are teeming with bacteria. There is a great body of evidence that periodontal diseases begin with plaque, a sticky, colourless biofilm that forms on the surface of the teeth. This substance is essentially made up of bacteria, which proliferate when they interact with the starch and sugar found in the food we eat.

 

Plaque is easily removed when you brush and floss, but it redevelops quickly—as fast as within a single day. When excess plaque isn’t removed, it can harden into what is known as tartar or calculus due to the precipitation of minerals from your saliva and the plaque itself. The tartar is an ideal surface for more plaque formation, thus perpetuating the cycle.

 

When the plaque buildup spreads below the gum lines, not even brushing will be enough to remove it because it will be protected from the abrasive effect of the brush. This buildup will cause the gums to become inflamed. The swelling also causes the gums to recede and detach from teeth, thereby forming spaces where more bacteria can proliferate. Without proper medical intervention, the gum disease can only get worse.

 

Risk factors for periodontal diseases

 

As you already know, poor oral health habits and not visiting the dentist for regular professional cleaning will not help keep plaque in one’s teeth under control. However, did you know there are also factors that can increase your risk for developing gum diseases?

 

These include things that you can actually do something about, like not eating a healthy diet, smoking tobacco, abusing substances, being stressed, and the use of certain medications. However, there are also risk factors with which people don’t have much control over. These include being someone of advanced age, having diabetes, having a weakened immune system because of a disease like AIDS, and having hormonal imbalances due to menstruation and pregnancy.

 

Conditions or factors involving the teeth themselves can also become risk factors. For instance, having misaligned or crowded teeth, as well as having dental appliances like braces can prevent you from brushing your teeth properly. Habits like clenching one’s jaws or grinding one’s teeth can also make periodontal diseases worse because these expose the gum tissues to further trauma.

 

Fighting  gum disease

 

Gum disease has its roots in the presence of bacteria in the oral cavity, which proliferate through plaque and tartar buildup. Good oral health habits like proper brushing and flossing every day are good foundations for periodontal disease prevention. However, even these aren’t enough. Visiting your dentist every six months or one year for periodic cleaning is also an absolute must. Regular dental visits become even more necessary if you have conditions that put you at a higher risk for developing periodontal diseases.

 

To learn more about what you can do to prevent gum disease, you can get in touch with Be Well Dental at (07) 3846.2002. You may also visit us in our dental practice in Highgate Hill, Queensland.

Are you too sweet?

sugar wood

They say you are what you eat. Are you too sweet?

We are told to eat well but how exactly do we do that? Bombarded with so many different messages, trying to find answers can be simply exhausting.

Fats and calories have been on the radar for some time now but more recently, the spotlight has turned to sugars in our diets and there’s even a new film about it.

“That Sugar Film” sees Damon Gameau embark on a 60 day experiment to consume the equivalent of 40 teaspoons of sugar each day – the average amount of sugar consumed by Australians daily.

For more information go to http://www.thatsugarfilm.com

To watch the trailer go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6uaWekLrilY

Dentists have seen the effects of excess sugar consumption on teeth for generations but there’s so much more to the story than just lollies, chocolate and soft drinks.

‘Hidden sugars’ are found in many perceived ‘healthy‘ foods & drinks we consume everyday. Yoghurts, juices, muesli bars and cereals just to name a few. Diet is actually one of the most common factors we see that can initiate and influence dental cavities.

Now, let’s not demonise sugar. They in just about everything we eat including fresh fruits, bread, rice, grains and so on, just in different forms. Carbohydrates, as a food group, are an important and necessary part of our diets. We all just need the knowledge to be more mindful of what we are consuming and how it might affect our bodies.

Especially if you’ve been battling dental problems, then something’s not quite right. Work with your dentist. Have an honest conversation and find out what might be happening in your specific situation. At Be Well Dental, we go through a detailed diet analysis with our patients when needed and often see extraordinary changes.

Sleep health

Snoring

In adults, approximately 20% of people will snore at some stage in their lifetime. Snoring itself, apart from the social problems is not a cause for medical concern. However, snoring can be an indicator of a serious underlying condition also known as Obstructive Sleep Apnoea (OSA). This can happen if there is a collapse of your airway, which interrupts breathing and will result in a fall in oxygen levels. Your body will recognise this, spasm and momentarily awaken you to resume a normal breathing pattern. This process can take place many times throughout the night, without you even realising. This means you are not having full deep sleeps.

There are a number of symptoms that can be associated with OSA including:

  • Snoring or choking during sleep
  • Agitated sleep or insomnia
  • Awaking with a dry mouth or sore throat
  • Falling asleep during the day
  • Poor concentration and memory loss
  • Mood swings and irritability
  • Constant feeling of fatigue.

This condition and other sleep breathing disorders have been shown to be linked to more serious health related concerns. These problems include high blood pressure, stroke and heart attack. OSA can also contribute to anxiety and depression. Similarly the effects of sleep disturbance can lead to excessive daytime sleepiness, which has been shown to markedly increase the risk of motor vehicle accidents along with home and work related injuries. There is strong evidence that people with moderate to severe sleep apnoea die prematurely.

At Be Well Dental, we can often provide a solution to patients with obstructive sleep apnoea and assist in developing a normal sleeping pattern. An custom fit oral appliance can be used to hold your jaw in a more forward position to help prevent the collapse of the soft tissues that obstruct the airway during sleep. For more information, please contact our friendly team on (07) 3846 2002 to organise a consultation.