FAQ

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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Get Every Single Answer There If You Want

Oftentimes, many of our patients ask our team to answer the following questions. Take a look and feel free to contact us if you have any additional questions or concerns!
braces
What is a crown or cap?

A crown is a tooth-colored covering that wraps around the entire tooth surface restoring it to its original shape and size. Crowns strengthen teeth that cannot be restored with fillings. They work best for teeth that have large or broken fillings and also for those that are badly decayed.

What is the difference between crowns and veneers?

A crown is a covering used for a tooth that is badly shaped or colored, or to support a tooth with a large filling when there is not enough tooth structure left. Crowns can be made of porcelain fused to metal or just metal. Placing a crown onto a patient’s tooth requires that some of the natural tooth structure be removed. A veneer is a very thin overlay that is placed on the front of a tooth. It does not require removal of as much natural tooth structure. Veneers are best for restoring healthy and strong teeth that need to be adjusted for cosmetic purposes.

What is a veneer?

A veneer is a thin, tooth-colored overlay that is bonded to the front of teeth to create a beautiful individual smile. They can help repair damaged, discolored or misaligned teeth. Unlike crowns, veneers do not require the removal of much natural tooth structure.

What should I do if I grind or clench my teeth?

Many people grind or clench their teeth without even realizing it. If you suffer from unexplained jaw pain or headaches, you may be grinding your teeth. Persistent grinding or clenching can weaken your teeth. If the dentist determines that you are grinding or clenching your teeth, our office can make you a custom night guard which will relieve pressure and pain associated with grinding, as well as protect the strength of your teeth for the future.

How often should I see my dentist?

We recommend that you see us at least twice a year for cleanings and exams. By doing so, you can be sure that your teeth and gums are clean and healthy and rest assured you are not developing any problems that may become more severe if not treated. In addition to maintaining your oral health, routine dental care benefits your overall health. Your teeth and gums may speak volumes about your well-being. For starters, there are conditions that affect oral health. Although no conclusive cause-effect relationship has been established, researchers continue to look at the associations between cavities, gum disease and heart disease. Diabetes increases the risks of gingival and periodontal inflammation and infections. Also, loose teeth could be a sign of osteoporosis. When there’s an underlying condition in play, the dentist may be able to draw an important connection between your oral health and your overall health. Our office doesn’t only want to see you when you are in pain, but instead prevent problems before they begin!

Will my dental visit be painful?

Many people fear that a dental appointment will result in painful and stress. Rest assured, our dental team is committed to providing you gentle and pain free dentistry. Our hygienists are careful to use the utmost care and compassion while cleaning your teeth and gums. Our doctors also generally administer topical anesthetic prior to any necessary injections. Our entire team strives to work with each of our patients to accommodate their needs for a stress and pain free dental experience.

What is the best way to brush my teeth?

You should brush your teeth at least two times per day. Our dental hygienists will help to teach you the best brushing and flossing techniques to keep your mouth healthy. We also recommend our patients utilize one of the state-of-the-art electric toothbrushes now available from our office or many other retailers. These brushes make cleaning gentler, easier and aid in plaque removal as well as providing some whitening benefits.

How do I whiten my smile?

Many patients desire whiter teeth and there are several options for obtaining great results. The first option is whitening strips. Our practice offers prescription strength (not over-the-counter) whitening strips that you place over the front of your top and bottom teeth. These strips are disposable and provide a very good result. The next option is whitening trays and bleach. To utilize this method, our staff will take impressions of your teeth and create a custom tray for you. You then place a small amount of bleach into the tray and place it your mouth for about 30 minutes. The custom trays work especially well, as they are made just for your mouth and allow you to converse and carry on normal activity during the day or night. The third option for a whiter smile is veneers. A veneer is a porcelain overlay that is placed over your natural tooth. The benefit to this method is that you can select the shade you like as well as straighten and perfect your smile at the same time.

When should your baby go to the dentist?

The Canadian Dental Association encourages parents to bring their children for their first visit to the dentist within six months of getting their first tooth or by the time they have their first birthday. If their first birthday has already past, a dental visit when they have all their baby teeth, usually when they are two or three is also a great time. Being seen by a dentist at an early age ensures that the cleaning you are doing at home is working and to identify any early dental issues to prevent them from getting worse.

How to prepare the little one for the dentist

A great way to introduce the dentist to your child is to read your child a story about going to the dentist. It is also good to be open and tell your child what the dentist is all about.

What are sealants?

A dental sealant is a plastic coating that is bonded onto the chewing surfaces of permanent back teeth. This “seals” the pits and fissures on the back teeth and makes it less likely that they will trap food and bacteria.

The teeth to be sealed are first cleaned and isolated to ensure a good bond with the sealant. The sealant is then placed on each tooth and a special blue light is used to cure the sealant. Then we make sure the bite feels good and you are done!

What is sedation?

Anxiety about dentistry and dental procedures can be very debilitating for some patients. Fear over needles, pain or even fear of the unknown can prevent some patients from receiving the care they desperately need. Through the use of various oral sedative drugs, we can control anxiety levels and perform all necessary dental procedures. Some sedative drugs will even allow you to “sleep” through the procedure and have little or no memory of the visit whatsoever. Sedation can be achieved through the use of nitrous oxide or “laughing gas” which provides a light level of sedation to “take the edge off” or the use of pills such as Valium (Lorazepam) or Halcion (Triazolam) which can be titrated to achieve deeper levels of sedation. With any sedation, we require the patient to be driven to and from our office by a responsible third party member who will be able to stay with you for at least 4 hours after your appointment.

What is the difference between digital x-Rays and regular x-Rays?

Digital x-rays are quick to take, deliver high quality images in less than 5 seconds, and produce up to 90% less radiation than conventional x-rays. By using this technology, we can detect changes in tooth structure or bone earlier and with more accuracy which leads to better overall dental care.

What are implants?

Dental Implants have become the standard of care for replacing missing teeth or to stabilize poor fitting dentures. Nobel Biocare is one of the leading manufacturers of titanium dental implants in the world. Their patented TiUnite tm technology prevents bone loss after surgery and aids in osseointegration, the process where your own human bone fuses to the implant surface, providing a rigid anchor for the tooth to be replaced to or the denture to be attached to. The process of replacing missing teeth with dental implants may require multiple visits to the dental office. Bone grafts may be required either before or during implant placement when there is insufficient bone at the site of the missing tooth. The process of implant placement into the jawbone is virtually pain-free and is often less than that of having the tooth removed in the first place. Before implant placement can take place, your dentist will require a current x-ray of the area in order to assess bone quantity and quality and proximity of important anatomical structures as well as a current medical history to ensure you are able to have the implant surgery. The implant itself is comprised of three components: the titanium implant itself, which is like a hollow screw, placed into the jawbone; an abutment, which is attached to the implant with an internal screw and comes up out of the gums; and finally, a crown or cap, which is cemented or screwed into the abutment.

Are dental x-rays safe?

We are all exposed to natural radiation in our environment. Digital x-rays produce a significantly lower level of radiation compared to traditional dental x-rays. Not only are digital x-rays better for the health and safety of the patient, they are faster and more comfortable to take, which reduces your time in the dental office. Also, since the digital image is captured electronically, there is no need to develop the x-rays, thus eliminating the disposal of harmful waste and chemicals into the environment.

Even though digital x-rays produce a low level of radiation and are considered very safe, dentists still take necessary precautions to limit the patient’s exposure to radiation. These precautions include only taking those x-rays that are necessary, and using lead apron shields to protect the body.

How often should dental x-rays be taken?

The need for dental x-rays depends on each patient’s individual dental health needs. Your dentist and dental hygienist will recommend necessary x-rays based upon the review of your medical and dental history, a dental exam, signs and symptoms, your age, and risk of disease.

A full mouth series of dental x-rays is recommended for new patients. A full series is usually good for three to five years. Bite-wing x-rays (x-rays of top and bottom teeth biting together) are taken at recall (check-up) visits and are recommended once or twice a year to detect new dental problems.

My child’s permanent teeth seems to be coming in crooked. Should I worry?

When a child is losing first teeth and getting permanent teeth, the jaws are still growing and there is a lot of rearranging going in the mouth. Often, crooked teeth come in arround them. Your dentist will be able to tell you weather there is potential malocclusion(“bad bite”) problem.

My child’s new permanent teeth seems very yellow. What causes discoloured or spotted teeth?

Permanent teeth are usually more yellow than first teeth. First teeth are sometimes called “milk teeth” because of their colour, not because of the infant’s diet. Discolouring and spotting can be caused by certain medication or by too much floride. The yellow colour of your child’s teeth is probably perfectly normal for him or her, but check with your dentist at the next visit.

Is it essential to brush right before bed?

Yes. If you have to miss a brushing, the bedtime one is probably the worst one to miss. If you don’t get rid of the bacteria and sugar that cause cavities, they have all night to do their dirty work. When your child is awake, saliva helps keep the mouth clean. But, a sleeping child produces less saliva. Try hard to get the bedtime brushing in. It is important for dental health and for instilling good habits. If it is simply impossible, brush carefully after supper and have your child rinse with plain water before bed.

How do I know if my child and I are doing a good job?

A resonably simple and effective way is to use “disclosing agents”. A disclosing agent is a harmless dye that stains the teeth in areas where brushing and flossing have missed. Disclosing tablets or solutions are available from your dentist and pharmacist. You can also demonstrate your technique to your hygienist or dentist. He or she will offer you some pointers.

Contact Your Dentist

If you are interested in Invisalign, the first step is to see a dental specialist who is authorized to deliver Invisalign treatment. Authorized providers must finish a training program as well as ongoing education on best practices.