Got Questions? We Have Answers
Every day in our Brampton dental office we speak with our patients to answer any questions that they may have regarding the health and maintenance of their oral condition.
Listed below for your reference are questions that we are asked most often.
If you would like to discuss any of these questions in more detail or if you have dental questions of your own, we invite you to call us at 905-789-4994.
Recent studies have shown that by the age of three, a child is already at risk of having cavities which can be caused by something as innocent as putting a baby to sleep with a bottle of juice or milk. Along with taking our first look at your child’s oral condition, this first appointment is also largely focused on the parents and helping them to establish a good oral hygiene program and diet for the child. We believe that a child should have his or her first dental visit when the first tooth erupts or before they reach their first birthday.
It is a little known fact that a child’s primary teeth are vital to the long-term health of their permanent adult teeth. The premature loss of primary teeth as a result of accidents or decay can cause serious problems, including poorly spaced and crooked adult teeth. As a result, it is just as important to care for a child’s baby teeth as it is for the adult teeth that follow.
According to recent studies, almost half the population of adults in North America suffers at least occasionally from bad breath (halitosis). The most common cause of bad breath is bacteria in the mouth and on the back of the tongue. These bacteria produce a volatile sulfur compound, which in turn produces a smell similar to “rotten eggs”. (Other non-dental causes of halitosis include certain foods, smoking, alcohol, hormonal changes or simply being hungry.)
If the halitosis is of oral origin, the treatment usually begins with ensuring meticulous hygiene of the mouth. Your dentist or dental hygienist will check for gum disease and, if necessary, prepare a detailed treatment plan. Tongue scraping should also become an important part of daily home care and part of your regular tooth brushing routine. (it’s easy and painless).
Deep cavities and cracks in teeth can allow bacteria to enter the pulp that nourishes the teeth, leading to irritation and infection. Eventually, the pulp may die, threatening the health of the surrounding tooth. In cases like these, your dentist will try to save the natural tooth with a root canal treatment.
At each check-up your dentist looks for possible signs of infection. If root canal treatment is necessary, your dentist can perform the procedure. It is important that you receive treatment as soon as possible to prevent further infection and possible tooth loss.
Root canal treatments remove the dead or infected pulp through a small opening in the tooth. The root canals are sealed to prevent bacteria from reaching the bone, and the opening in the tooth is sealed with a filling or crown.
With a root canal you can keep your natural teeth and avoid a costly tooth replacement. Speak to one of our team members to learn more.
Periodontal or gum disease is caused by a buildup of bacteria at the gumline. This bacteria, called plaque, eventually hardens into tartar. When the tartar is not removed, it can lead to an infection that may eventually break down the gum tissue and spread to the underlying bone.
In extreme cases, teeth can loosen and fall out. Bacteria can also enter the bloodstream through the gums and lead to other serious health problems.
Good oral hygiene can help prevent gum disease, but regular dental check-ups are essential to early detection, especially in those with a family history of the disease.
When detected, gum disease can be treated. In its early stages, your dentist may recommend a thorough cleaning and improved oral hygiene routine. In later stages, you may be referred to periodontist.
With regular dental check-ups and excellent oral hygiene, you can keep your gums and teeth in optimum health. Talk to us to learn more.
Flossing is a vitally important part of your oral hygiene routine. By removing plaque that accumulates between your teeth, flossing aids in the prevention of tooth decay and gum disease.
Plaque consists of bacteria that can attack your teeth and gums. When you brush, you only reach about 65% of your tooth surface. Flossing ensures that you reach the remaining areas. It is extremely important to remove plaque daily because within 24 to 36 hours, it will harden into tartar, a hard substance that can only be removed by your dental team.
If you have bridges or braces, flossing can be challenging. A new product, called Super Floss, makes flossing much easier. Super Floss includes a stiff-end threader and spongy floss that help you reach under and around dental appliances.
To learn more about proper flossing techniques, or for answers to other oral health concerns, please ask a member of our team.
Acid wear occurs when acids soften and erode tooth enamel. Prolonged acid wear can make teeth more sensitive and lead to increased tooth decay.
Although not exclusive to acid wear, some of the signs that acid may be damaging your teeth include: yellowing of the teeth, caused by the erosion of enamel; translucency as the edges of teeth become thinner; small cracks; and increased sensitivity in teeth.
For most Canadians, the major sources of acid in their diets include carbonated drinks, juices (especially citrus), and some fruits. Even tea and bananas contain significant amounts of acid.
While you should not stop eating healthy foods because of their acid content, you can minimize their effect on your teeth. Be sure to drink plenty of water to flush acids out of your mouth. You can also drink milk or eat nuts along with acidic foods to neutralize the acid.
If the problem progresses, your dental team has solutions to strengthen your teeth. Talk to a member of our team to learn more.
Chipped teeth should always be evaluated by a dentist to ensure the damage is assessed correctly. Depending on the size and location of the chip, there are a number of solutions available:
- Enamel Shaping – A reshaping of the tooth to smooth out small chips.
- Bonding – A quick solution for small chips that can be done in one visit. The dentist bonds a tooth-colored resin to the chipped area to mask the chip.
- Veneers – Custom-made porcelain veneers are fitted to your teeth to cover imperfections, including chips. Crowns would be used for larger chips.
- Crowns – Crowns cover the chewing surface of a tooth and are best suited to chips in the molars. Like veneers, they are custom-fitted to your teeth.
Talk to us today about the best option for natural-looking repairs of your chipped teeth.