Questions & answers
Listed below are the most commonly asked questions we receive from our patients.
What should I look for when choosing the right dentist?
Choosing a dentist who “clicks” with you and your family is important, and you may wish to consider several dentists before making your final decision. During your first visit, you should be able to determine whether the dentist is right for you. During your appointment, consider the following:
- Is the appointment schedule convenient?
- Is the office close by and easy to get to?
- Does the office appear to be clean and orderly?
- Is your medical and dental history recorded and placed in a permanent file?
- Does the dentist explain techniques for good oral health?
- Is information about cost presented to you before treatment is scheduled?
If your answer to these questions is yes, then you’ve found your dentist.
My teeth feel fine. Do I still need to see a dentist?
Your teeth may feel fine, but it’s still important to see the dentist regularly because problems can exist without you knowing.
Practicing good oral habits helps keep your mouth healthy, but they do not fix everything. Brushing does not remove all plaque in the mouth, which can lead to oral diseases such as decay. Your dentist has the skill and knowledge needed to keep your oral health at its best.
Your smile’s appearance is important, and your dentist can help keep your smile healthy and looking beautiful. With so many advances in dentistry, you no longer have to settle for stained, chipped, missing, or misshapen teeth.
At what age should I start taking my child to see the dentist?
Check ups are not only for adults. Children need them as much as anyone. How your child views oral health is affected by his/her early exposure to dental care.
We at A Plus Dental recommend bringing your children for a check up as early as six-months-old and no later than one-year-old. During this time, your child’s baby teeth will be coming in and your dentist can examine the health of your child’s first few teeth.
Tooth decay can still develop in your child’s teeth if they are not properly taken care of. This is often refereed as baby bottle tooth decay or early childhood caries.
Although the affected teeth are still the primary teeth, the decay can cause harmful effects. Children need healthy teeth to chew food and speak. The baby teeth also make sure that the adult teeth come in correctly. Any damage may cause substantial effect to the developing adult teeth.
After the first visit, be sure to schedule regular check ups every six months.
How often should I see the dentist?
Children, teens, and adults should all see the dentist for a regular check up at least once every six months. Your dentist can effectively monitor your oral health status and check the progress of your recent dental work if you’ve had any done.
Patients who are at a greater risk for oral cancer or gum disease may be required to see the dentist more than just twice a year. Your doctor will help determine how often you should visit the dentist for regular check ups.
During a dental check up, your dentist may perform a scale and clean, provide personalised oral hygiene instructions, and conduct tests such as oral cancer screening. Keep a healthy smile for life by visiting your Campbelltown dentist at A Plus Dental regularly.
What can gum disease mean for a diabetic?
Around one million Australians have diabetes; and experts estimate at least half of that figure are unaware that they have it.
Diabetes is linked to a number of serious diseases including periodontal disease. Periodontal disease is the more progressed form of gum disease. Diabetes creates the perfect setting for periodontal disease to thrive.
A diabetic’s body doesn’t respond as quickly to infection as that of a non-diabetic. If the infection persists, it can spread to the underlying bone that supports and anchors the teeth. Once it has progressed to periodontal disease, gum tissue and bone around the teeth breaks down.
The trick is to control your glucose level and seek the help of a professional. It has been shown that diabetics who keep their condition under control and maintain good oral hygiene have a far better chance of combating infections than those who are poorly controlled.
I brush my teeth constantly but still have a bad breath. What can I do?
Brushing and flossing are definitely the first steps to eliminating bad breath. They remove bacteria responsible for creating odorous sulfur compounds and the food they feed on.
However, bacteria hide not only on and around the teeth but also on the tongue under a layer of mucous. Here they are free to create odours. You might want to consider a tongue scraper. They’re extremely effective at removing this protective mucous layer from the back of the tongue. The latest products on the market for bad breath are toothpastes and mouthwashes containing chlorine dioxide. The chlorine dioxide neutralizes the odorous sulfur compounds, instead of simply covering up the odour.
If the foul scent persists, refer to your dentist immediately. Bad breath may also be caused by hormonal changes and imbalances, medications, xerostomia (dry mouth), smoking, and other medical conditions such as HIV and diabetes. It’s important to treat the cause of the issue to effectively treat it and stop it from coming back.
I have a number of black fillings, what can I have done to improve this?
In the past, amalgam was used as tooth filling. Because of their black appearance, some refer to them as black fillings. It has been used as a filling material for over a hundred years; it’s still one of the strongest materials available.
However, these fillings can be highly unattractive and have a high mercury content. They can lead to awkward smiles and even pose dangers to your health.
At A Plus Dental, we can replace your amalgam fillings with tooth-coloured restorative materials. They blend well with your natural tooth and are completely safe.
What should I do when a tooth is pushed out of position?
A loose tooth may be caused by a number of reasons including accidents (forceful blow to the face) and receding gums. If the cause of your loose tooth is the former, attempt to reposition the tooth to its normal alignment using very light finger pressure, but do not force the tooth. Bite down to keep the tooth from moving. See your dentist immediately. Your dentist may splint the tooth in place to the two healthy teeth next to the loose tooth.
If the possible cause is receding gums, the best thing to do is visit your dentist. Loose teeth caused by receding gums need immediate professional attention. Receding gums is a stage of gum disease, which worsens to periodontal disease. The earlier you visit your dentist, the easier it will be for your dentist to help you.
What can I do to alleviate my toothaches
A toothache may be caused by a serious dental issue in your mouth. The pain signifies that the problem has progressed to an alarming state.
If you have a toothache, visit your dentist immediately. Unattended it may lead to tooth extraction.
To alleviate your pain, follow these steps:
- Make sure that there is no food lodged or stuck in the mouth, particularly in the aching area. Brush and floss gently.
- Rinse your mouth with an antiseptic mouthwash or a salt-water. For the salt-water, dissolve ½ teaspoon of salt to eight ounces of lukewarm water. Rinse your mouth several times.
- Take OTC pain relievers but be mindful of their restrictions.
- Apply clove oil to the aching area. Do not use aspirin inside the mouth as this could burn the gums.
- Apply a cold compress to reduce swelling.
- Call your dentist immediately.