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New Years Resolutions

Advice from Newington Dental

Consistency is important for dental health. While we can have the occasional cheat day we should maintain good habits. If we haven’t always done this in the past we can at least start now, and reap the benefits. It is well worthwhile for the improvement in our dental and
overall health.

A Healthier Diet- Of course a good diet benefits your weight, and cardiovascular health. Its worth dieting just for this. An additional advantage is the lower sugar, which means less tooth decay.
Increase fruit and vegetables, and cut down on processed foods.

Better Brushing – We should brush twice a day, and be thorough. But we should also wait 30 minutes after eating and drinking before brushing. This is because food and drink will soften the enamel, which can then be easily damaged by brushing. Drink water before brushing, and wait that 30 minutes.

Consistent Flossing – Almost 30% of the exposed tooth surface is between the teeth. This will accumulate plaque, and is prone to catching food debris. We cannot afford to neglect this area. It must be cleaned by flossing or another method.
We should floss once per day. An alternative, if you don’t like flossing, is a water pick. This is fine if you are prone to bleeding gums (which is a sign of not cleaning between the teeth), of if you dislike the sensation of flossing.

Don’t Smoke – This has many bad health effects, one of which is doubling the chances of gum disease.

Keep Alcohol to a Minimum – Alcohol will dry the mouth, which increases bad bacteria over time. It also increases the risk of mouth cancer. Weaker drinks, beer and wine, and preferable to straight spirits.

Safe living to prevent Injuries – If you play sports, wear a mouthguard. This won’t prevent the accident, but it will often reduce the damage.

Look after Past injuries – We may have lost a tooth to injury or negligence. And while it would have been better to keep the original tooth the dentist can replace the original with an implant or crown. This will soon feel, function and look like a natural tooth.

Look after any issues – Did you always have a slightly crooked row of teeth, or one tooth that protruded? Invisalign will straighten most types of issues over a year or two, and causes minimal inconvenience.

Teeth whitening – If your teeth are healthy you might consider making them a shade or two lighter. This cannot be done if the enamel is too thin, as it will make the teeth sensitive to hot and cold. But for most people this is not an issue.

Regular Visits to the Dentist – Visit the dentist every 6 months, and catch any potential problems early on. Prevention is better, and less expensive, than curing a problem.

Advice from Newington Dental

Good dental care will help keep us in much better health. De diligent, and visit the dentist twice yearly.

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A Better Smile

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Our teeth should function well and provide us with an attractive smile. These two goals tend to be roughly similar – well functioning teeth tend to look neat, though sometimes they might need a little additional help to look more attractive. As the same time any improvements in the appearance of the teeth are unlikely to affect the function.

Cosmetic Telopea Dentist

The field of improving the appearance of teeth is called cosmetic dentistry. This can range from simple improvements in colour (bleaching) to replacing whole rows of teeth.

  • Teeth can be lightened in colour or have stains removed.
  • Teeth might be too short or too long.
  • Teeth might be irregular in shape.
  • The teeth may need to be straightened.
  • There may be large gaps between teeth.
  • One of more teeth may be missing.

Braces – Newington Dental

Perhaps the single most common orthodontic treatment, braces can straighten teeth and jaws. This might be done purely for cosmetic reasons, for straight teeth look good. It can also be done to make sure the teeth function well.

Modern braces are more discreet and a little less awkward than older traditional braces.

Teeth Whitening – Dundas Dental

Teeth might be stained from the consumption of coffee and wine, or because of smoking. Or they might simply be a less than ideal colour. Teeth whitening is a fairly simple procedure, either done in office or as a custom take home kit. Results often take only an hour or two.
Unfortunately, teeth whitening can make teeth more sensitive to hot and cold temperatures. But this shouldn’t be a problem unless the tooth enamel is thin.

Dentures – Telopea Dentist

Modern dentures are far better than the type of bulk device that our grandparents commonly wore. Often they just replace a missing tooth or two. These are relatively inexpensive, and cause minimal inconvenience.

Crowns and Implants – Newington Dental

A badly damaged or lost tooth can be replaced or repaired.
Crowns replace the entire outer surface of the tooth, keeping only the internal root and pulp. This is fine for a tooth that is badly damaged or misshapen. The crown looks like a real tooth.
Implants are like crowns, but replace the inside of the tooth with a metal post. These implants and crowns last for decades, requiring only regular daily brushing and cleaning.

Veneers – Dundas Dental

Instead of having a tooth crowned, replacing the entire outer surface of the tooth, we might just replace the front surface. This is a veneer, which is useful for discoloured teeth, slightly irregular teeth, or for teeth that have gaps between them.

Veneers are less expansive than crowns, and can be fitted in just two appointments.

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We all deserve the best smile possible. Cosmetic dentistry can give us the teeth we have always wanted.

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Avoiding Stained Teeth

Teeth can be come stained form exposure to certain foods, drinks and other substances. This should not be harmful, but it might look less than ideal.

Everybody’s teeth are a little different when it comes to stains. A few people find that almost nothing will causes staining. Most people will find they then need to avoid one or two items if they want perfectly white teeth.

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Coffee – Possibly the most widely used pick-me-up in the world. Many if us need that Monday morning coffee/caffeine hit. But coffee, especially black coffee, can stain teeth.

Part of the problem coffee directly discolouring the teeth, the other is the coffee altering the pH balance of the mouth. The altered pH leaves the teeth open to staining from other foods.

Using a straw helps reduce the effect, as does a cup with a sealed top (like a child’s sippy cup). These mean the teeth have less direct contact with the coffee. Milk and sugar-free sweeteners also help.

Candy and Confectionary – This is bad at every level, for teeth and general health. It causes tooth decay, and leaves tooth enamel prone to staining.

Soft drinks – Again, these have no health benefit. And they harm teeth by causing decay and leaving enamel prone to staining. Diet soft drinks (with no sugar) are almost as bad because of the acid.

A straw will reduce the harmful effect of soft drinks; the teeth will have less contact with the liquid. But it is better to avoid the drink altogether.

Dental Newington – Healthy but Still Harmful.

Tea – Teas can have their benefits, with green tea actually fighting bad breath and some forms of tooth decay. But teas can cause staining of teeth. Green tea can leave a dull grey stain. Black tea may leave a yellow stain.

Citrus Fruits – These are healthy, but acidic. The acid weaken tooth enamel and leaves the teeth open to staining. Drinking water after eating fruit helps.

Berries – Many berries will causes stains, at least on some people’s teeth. Drinking water, or mixing the berries with yoghurt, will greatly reduce the issue.

Red wine– The health benefits of wine have been debated for years. But the resveratrol and antioxidants so appear to be healthy.

Yet red wine can cause red stains on teeth, or in some cases a dull grey stain. Drinking water afterwards will help.

Curry – The tumeric in curry is healthy, fighting inflammation and cognitive decline. But it will cause yellow stains on teeth. Combining raw fruits and vegetables will reduce he issue.

Vinegar – Balsamic vinegar and other type will be harsh on teeth and lead to staining. As always, drinking water afterwards will reduce the harm.

Preventing Damage – Newington Dental

Sugar-free gum after meals will reduce the effects of most food and drinks. Plain water is also beneficial.
Never brush too soon after eating. This causes damage as the food and drink has softened the enamel. The softened enamel is brushed away by the toothbrush. Instead, wait 30 minutes before brushing.

Newington Dental

Teeth should look great and function well. Talk to us, and have the healthy mouth and smile that you deserve.

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Benefits of Braces

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We tend to think of braces as the way to get straight teeth, which are more attractive. And this is quite true. But there is more here than just appearances. Teeth are straightened for functional reasons as well as aesthetic.

Dundas Dental – Improved Bite

Ideally our jaws should neatly align. The top front teeth should be slight over the bottom front teeth, and each of the side teeth on the top and bottom should neatly align.

Many people have slightly less than perfect bites, the jaws not perfectly aligning. Often this is so slight that it does not matter. But if the misalignment is too pronounced there may be problems. Misaligned teeth tend to wear very unevenly, and this can cause damaged teeth and saw jaws over time. It is best to align teeth early on, to prevent damage from occurring over time.

Cleaning Issues

If the teeth are evenly spaced and the jaws well aligned the teeth will be easier to clean; there will be few spaces for food to be trapped. This means teeth and gums, being easy to floss, will tend to be much healthier.

Dundas Dental Old Patient Braces

Braces are a rite of passage for many teens, and they benefit from the results, neat functional attractive teeth, for the rest of their adult life. But some adults also have braces, because their teeth were not satisfactorily straightened when they were younger. A few adults with crooked teeth manage to avoid braces by using Invisalign instead. But braces might be needed in situations where more complex straightening is needed. Jaw alignment, for example, will require braces rather than Invisalign.

Dental Dundas

Braces give us neat teeth that function well. We can have braces as an adult, but having braces as a teenager means we receive the benefits earlier.

 

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Invisalign or Braces?

Invisalign Dundas

While some of us naturally have near perfect teeth most of us require at least a little dental work to get an ideal smile. Some of us need considerable teeth straightening from braces or other dental procedures. This might be for aesthetic reasons, or because the crooked teeth cause problems with eating, speaking or premature wear.

An alternative to braces is Invisalign. Many adults prefer not to use braces as they seem very teenage. They are also make eating and speaking awkward. But Invisalign can perform most (but not quite all) of the functions of braces. And they cause minimal discomfort.

Advantages of Invisalign Dundas

– Invisalign is nearly invisible, being clear plastic.
– They are removable and easy to care for
– No food restrictions, they are taken out for eating.
– Invisalign is comfortable and easy to wear
– They can whiten teeth during treatment
– Minimal maintenence, much less than braces.
– Final results take from 6 months to 2 years, less than braces.

The disadvantages are few:

– They cannot treat some complex tooth alignment issues. More complex issues will require braces or implants.
– They cost more than braces.
– Must be worn 22 hours per day.

Invisalign has been in use for over 20 years. This is less time than braces, which have been used for generations, but the results from those 20 years have been consistently high quality.

A warning though, there are some mail order systems that ostensibly produce a similar product to Invisalign. But these are not clear retainers, and they are not produced with X-rays or other methods that fit the retainer to the individual’s mouth. These mail order systems ore not cheap, and the results are unpredictable.

Invisalign Dundas

Invisalign is discreet and can give many of us the ideal smile, without the inconvenience of braces.

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Some Good Dental Habits

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We need to look after our teeth if we are to maintain both our dental health and our general health. A few good habits can make all the difference. A few good dental habits can mean much healthier teeth and gums.

– Brushing twice daily, but wait 30 minutes after eating. Eating or drinking will temporarily soften the enamel on our teeth. If we brush while this enamel is soft we quickly wear it away. Drink water after eating, and wait 30 minutes before brushing.
-Flossing – 30% of the total tooth surface is between the teeth. We cannot leave this uncleaned. Floss will remove plaque from between teeth along with any food debris. This is as important for teeth as brushing, and perhaps even more important for prevent gum disease.
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– Drink water. This has been a health trend over the past generation. But it caught on because it proved very effective at so many ways. Amid other health benefits it keeps teeth clean, and reduces bad breath. Without water the mouth becomes dry, and this increases the bad bacteria that lead to decay.
– Mouthwash – Use this a few times per day, in addition to brushing, to reduce the bad bacteria in the mouth. It is not too difficult to keep mouthwash in several locations (in the office desk, in the car, in our briefcase) so it is always at hand.
– Eat crunchy food, like salads and apples. These clean teeth, and tend to be generally healthy.

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– Avoid soda and junk food. These are harsh on teeth, and have few if any redeeming qualities. Additionally, cola drinks can stain teeth. All soft drink is acidic, even diet version which are at least lower in sugar.
– Scrape or brush your tongue. Bacteria and plaque can accumulate on the tongue surface. This leads to bad breath.
– Use toothpaste with fluoride . This hardens tooth enamel, and fights bad bacteria. As long as the fluoride is not swallowed there will be no issues.
– Salt water rinse. This fights gum infections, killing some bacteria, as well as viral and fungal problems. It is also effective if we have ulcers or other mouth sores. Do this before brushing. You can use salt rinses several times per day, but make sure to drink plenty of water to prevent a dry mouth.

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Good habits and regular twice per year visits to the dentist will help maintain the best dental health.

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Closing A Tooth Gap

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A few of us have a gap between our teeth. This may work for some people who like a gap between the front teeth. Other people may find they would prefer more traditionally spaced teeth. Or that the gaps cause problems when chewing. Gaps teeth are usually about appearance, and rarely affect health. But if we want to close the gaps between the teeth there are some options.

Teeth gaps – Newington Dental

Gaps between teeth are termed Diastema. There are many possible causes:

– New teeth in children.
– Small teeth in a wide jaw
– Low frenulum (the skin where the upper lip meets the upper gum).
– Thumb sucking habit after the habit the age of four.
– A tongue thrusting
– Gum disease
– Missing teeth

Treatments – Newington Dental

Braces
May teenagers have braces to cure a variety of dental ailments. Closing gaps between teeth is one of the many functions they can perform.

Invisalign
Adults may also use braces, but many prefer not to look like teenagers. An alternative is Invisalign. These are clear plastic retainers that force teeth into place. They perform most of the functions of braces.

Veneers
These are thin coverings that are permanently bonded to the front of the teeth. By making these slightly wider than the natural tooth the gaps between teeth can be closed.

Crowns
Crowns (also called capped teeth) completely replace the outer part of the tooth, while keeping the inner root and nerve. The new artificial tooth look like an ideal tooth, and lasts for decades.

Implants
These are like crowns, but they also replace the root underneath the gum. They are ideal for replacing the entire tooth if the cause of the gap is a missing tooth. Implants last for decades.

Bonding
This adds several layers of thin composite bonding material to the space between teeth. This can be built up to close the tooth gap. Bonding can look quite natural.

Dental Newington

Dentists can give us the smile we deserve to have. We look after your mouth’s health and appearance.

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How to Treat Gingivitis With Mouthwash?

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Gum infections are always nasty. And a mild gum infection can quickly turn into a serious infection if left untreated. If the infection progresses from Gingivitis to Periodontal Disease it becomes incurable, and we are stuck with the infection the rest of our life, always treating it but never completely free from the problem.

Gingivitis is a relatively mild gum infection. We can usually prevent it brushing and flossing. And if we do contract gingivitis we can usually cure it with diligent dental care and some home treatments.

If the infection progresses to periodontitis, a serious gum infection, we will need to have professional dental treatment. Left untreated the periodontal infection will cause the loss of teeth and bone. It has also been linked to health problems in old age, such as dementia and heart conditions.

Dundas Dentist – Home Treatment Mouthwashes.

There are commercial mouthwashes that are designed to treat gum infections. These are basically safe disinfectants, and are actually quite effective. But some home treatments can also be very effective when used on a daily basis for a few weeks. These should be combined with twice daily brushing and flossing.

Salt Water

Salt in warm water is an old trick, but such a simple trick is also effective. The salt kills a lot of bad bacteria in the gums and mouth, and also helps with ulcers and inflammation.

If you have a gum infection then gargle salt water twice daily. But wait 30 minutes and then rinse with plain water before brushing, as the salt can weaken tooth enamel.

Lemongrass Mouthwash

A few drops of lemongrass oil (2-3 drops maximum) in a glass of water makes a strong mouthwash. This is more potent that salt or most other treatments.

Always use food grade lemongrass, and never swallow the mixture. Use this 2 or 3 times per day, and continue for 2 weeks after the infection has cleared up.

Aloe Vera

This is sold as a heath drink. If it is pure it makes an effective mouthwash. The only precaution is that many people are allergic to Aloe Vera

Tea Tree Oil

This is a little like lemongrass oil. We can add 3 drops to warm water and have an effective mouthwash.

As a precaution, Tea Tree Oil can interfere with some medications. And some people are allergic to Tea Tree Oil.

Sage

Sage leaves boiled in water make a mild mouthwash. This is not a potent as other treatments, but it is also less irritating.

Dental Dundas – Diet Changes for Gum Disease.

Of course we know that sugary items and junk food are very bad for teeth and gums. We should also realise that some foods can benefit the mouth, and fight infections.

Turmeric

This fights inflammation and some types of infection. We can add it to many types of food, or even make a turmeric paste and apply it to our teeth and gums.

Green Tea

This fights bad bacteria and gives us fresh breath. a few cups of green tea every day is healthy. The decaffeinated types are fine.

Onions

Raw onions will fight bacteria and other infections. We can chew onions daily or add them to food. The downside is that they cause bad breath and watering eyes.

Garlic

Garlic will also fight bacteria and gum infections. It also tends to be generally healthy. But it does give bad breath.

Cashews

These fight some types of bad bacteria. There is no side effect as long as there is no allergy to nuts.

Chewing Gum

Sugar free gum with Xylitol fights bad bacteria in the mouth. It also gives us fresh breath, so we might use it after eating onions of garlic.

Dundas Dental

Gum infections are serious, especially if they go untreated. See the dentist if you suspect an issue and prevent further troubles.

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What is Orthodontics?

Orthodontics – Dentist Dundas

Orthodontics is the study of optimising teeth and jaw alignment. The aim is to give us neat, well functioning teeth that should also look attractive. Orthodontics may overlap other dental specialities.

Few people have naturally ideal, let alone perfect teeth, but the practice of orthodontics can give most individuals teeth and jaws that are very close to ideal.

In the past orthodontics was almost entirely practised on teenagers, usually when their permanent teeth first emerged. But now about 30% of orthodontics is performed on adults, who presumably could not have the treatment when they were teens.

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Orthodontics deals with improper teeth positioning. This may involve underbite, overbite, crooked teeth, overcrowded teeth or a jaw alignment. These issues can cause tooth wear and difficulty with cleaning. occasionally they may cause difficult with speaking or breathing at night. Orthodontics can move individual teeth and the position of the jaw to some extent. It often gives us a better smile, but is a desirable side effect rather than the main goal. Well functioning teeth are the aim of orthodontics.

Children should have an orthodontic treatment at around 7 years of age. This will determine if the might need braces or other treatment latter on. Sometimes the child will need no treatment, or perhaps some early preventative measures on the baby teeth will parlay the need for orthodontic work in their teens.

It is usually best to have orthodontic work done in the teens, once the permanent teeth have first appeared. But it is never too late to have more orthodontic work done.

Dental Dundas

There is no reason not to have the best teeth possible. see your dentist and orthodontist for a smile you will be proud to have.

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What are Dental Veneers?

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There are many ways to alter teeth that are less than perfect. Many people have braces as teenagers, or have individual teeth crowned when they are older. Another option is dental veneers. These are less pricey than crowns or implants, and are a good option if a whole row of teeth need to be fixed. Veneers are the secret behind many celebrity smiles.

What are Dental Veneers? – Dental Newington

Veneers are a thin layer of porcelain or composite resin that replace the front surface of a tooth. They are a permanent solution, a little like crowns, but which only cover one surface of the tooth.

Porcelain veneers are considered the superior type. They look more realistic than composite, and are stronger and longer lasting. Unlike some teeth and dental materials they should not stain.

Porcelain teeth require a few dental visits to be fitted, as they are custom made in a dental lab. But the results are impressive. Modern computer aided design and manufacturing can allow porcelain veneers to be fitted in minimal time.

When Are Veneers a Good Option – Newington Dental

Veneers can make teeth look like new, completely changing their appearance.

They are ideal for:

  • Slightly crooked teeth. The veneers can be completely straight.
  • Stained teeth. The veneers are clean and bright, and should never stain.
  • A chipped tooth. The veneer gives a neat, straight, complete tooth.
  • Widely spaced teeth. The veneers can be slightly wider than the original teeth, so they sit neatly nest to each other.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Veneers – Dental Newington

Advantages:

  • The procedure only takes a few visits. This is different to braces or Invisalign which takes several years.
  • The Veneers are permanent. It is rare to have problems with veneers.
  • Teeth will be permanently the right colour – No need for teeth whitening.
  • Less expensive than crowns.
  • The procedure is not too complex or awkward.
  • The results look and feel like natural teeth.

Disadvantages

  • The natural teeth are permanently altered.
  • The natural teeth and gums must be fairly healthy for veneers to be fitted.
  • They might cause tooth sensitivity.
  • Composite veneer can crack after several years.

Newington Dentist

We deserve the best teeth possible. Dental veneers can give many of us a natural looking, healthy smile.