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Q?Am I too old to get braces?

Adults can be fitted with braces at any age. When constant pressure is placed on teeth, the surrounding bone remodels as one’s teeth move into the corrected position. Throughout life, one’s bone is constantly remodelling thus making braces an option at any age.
Many adults like to use the new Invisalign clear aligners to position the teeth with the benefit of not being seen. Discuss the possibility of braces with your dentist who will refer you to an orthodontist.

Q?Should I have amalgam fillings removed?

At Yaas Dental Care, white tooth-coloured plastic fillings are preferentially used.
There has been much publicity regarding the safety of dental amalgam. The World Health Organisation and the International Dental Federation have released a joint statement confirming the safety of dental amalgam as a filling material. The Australian Dental Association (ADA) policy remains, on the basis of the research available, that the use of dental amalgam produces no harmful effects.
If amalgam restorations are cracked or leaking they must be replaced to prevent bacteria from further decaying your tooth. Which material is best to use should be discussed with your dentist. Composite resin restorations are the modern material of choice due to their pleasing aesthetic appearance, in addition to their ability to bond to the layers of your teeth and favourable wear properties.
Environmental concerns now restrict the use of amalgams in Scandanavia. The Australian Dental Association takes a similar viewpoint to their counterparts in Germany and Austria by discouraging amalgam use during pregnancy and breastfeeding, in children and in individuals with existing kidney disease.

Q?Why do my gums bleed?

By brushing and flossing correctly every day you prevent plaque from developing around the teeth and gums. However, if there is a build up of plaque or calculus (hardened plaque) in the fold or pocket where your tooth meets your gum, bacteria develop and if allowed to multiply, gingivitis develops. This can be recognised by red, swollen gums that will bleed easily. Bleeding gums should be taken seriously as if left untreated could lead to periodontal disease.
Regular dental visits will involve scaling and cleaning to remove the hardened plaque as well as soft tissue assessment and instruction on optimal oral hygiene. A program of prevention is vital for lifelong good oral health.

Q?How do I prevent gum disease?

By correctly brushing and flossing your teeth and regular professional scale and cleaning you can reduce your risk of gum disease. However, factors such as stress, smoking, diabetes, pregnancy, genetics and poor health can affect gum health. Dentists at Yaas Dental Care will suggest a preventative care program to suit your individual and specific needs.

Q?I brush my teeth constantly but still have bad breath. What can I do?

Good daily brushing and flossing are definitely the first steps to eliminating bad breath. Brushing and flossing remove bacteria responsible for creating odorous sulphur 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 odours are created..
It is best to brush your tongue daily or you may want to consider a tongue scraper. Both are extremely effective at removing this protective mucous layer from the back of the tongue
If bad breath persists, there are mouth rinse products available. A visit to the doctor may also be necessary to eliminate other causes.

Q?How do I floss?

Hold the floss tightly between your thumb and forefinger for the upper teeth and between forefingers for the lower teeth with about 1 cm of floss between them, leaving no slack. Us a gentle rocking motion to guide the floss between your teeth. Avoid jerking or snapping the floss into the gums. When the floss reaches the gum line, curve the floss into a C-shape against one tooth until you feel resistance. Hold the floss against the tooth and gently scrape the side of the tooth. Move the floss away from the gum. Repeat for the other side of the gap, alongside the other tooth. Ensure all teeth are flossed, working in a set pattern.

Q?What happens if I don’t get my teeth cleaned regularly at the dentist?

Periodontal disease progresses as plaque and calculus are allowed to accumulate. The supporting tissues around the teeth (the gums, periodontal ligaments and bone) are lost. Pockets will form which trap even more plaque. Bad breath frequently occurs. Be mindful that once bone that supports teeth is lost, it will never regrow. Referral to a periodontist may occur.

Q?What causes discolouration of teeth?

Discolouration of the tooth enamel can be caused by staining, aging or chemical damage to teeth. The more common causes are coffee, tea, red wine, significant amounts of cola soft drinks, cigarettes and some medications.
Genetics can also play a role in the colour of a person’s teeth – some people have a naturally brighter enamel than others. Disease and certain medications eg tetracyclines can also cause discolouration.

Q?Is home bleaching safe?

Dentist dispensed and supervised tray-based–at-home teeth whitening methodology has been extensively studied and reported in the dental literature. Its effectiveness and safety has been well documented.
The most common temporary side effects are mild tooth sensitivity and slight gum irritation. Bleaching is not recommended in children younger than 16 years because the pulp chamber or nerve of the tooth is enlarged until this age. Pregnant and lactating women should also forgo teeth whitening. Cavities should be treated before undergoing any whitening procedure.
Discuss tooth whitening further with your dentist at Yaas Dental Care

Q?Are whitening toothpastes very effective?

Whitening toothpastes are designed for whitening stains on the surface of the teeth, not whitening into the tooth surface. The concentration of the active ingredient in bleaching toothpastes are much, much lower than in the home bleaching kits. Additionally, they are quickly washed off the tooth surface by saliva. The whitening toothpaste needs to be on the surface of teeth for many minutes to have the slightest effect.

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