Frequently Asked Questions
Why is my tooth sensitive after placement of a filling?
Placing a filling is like ‘surgery’ on your tooth. The white fillings bind chemically to the tooth and the nerve of the tooth might react to the ‘foreign’ body. Give it at least a few weeks to settle. Some take up to 3 months.
Are the old amalgam fillings toxic or ‘bad’ for me?
This is very controversial. Certain people are genetically predisposed to be more prone to heavy metal toxicity. It is better to remove amalgams by using rubber dam. Don’t just remove all amalgam fillings if there is nothing wrong with the filling i.e. still sealing perfectly. If it needs replacement, then replace it with a white composite filling or crown.
Can bleaching damage your teeth?
No. In fact, with laser bleaching you can make your teeth whiter and stronger. The bleach contains fluoride and calcium phosphate. The laser also helps to desensitize the teeth. There is very little to no sensitivity after laser bleaching.
Why are my gums bleeding?
Plaque and tar build up is loaded with bacteria and cause infection of the gums. Infected gums bleed very easily. By having a good cleaning and removing all the bacteria will clear up the infection.
How often must I come for a dental check-up and cleaning?
The average person must visit his dentist every 6 months. Those people who are prone to tooth decay or gum infection must visit their dentist more regularly.
Why are my teeth sensitive to cold, although I don’t have any cavities?
If your gums are residing, either because you brush too hard or you have a gum infection, the root of the tooth starts to become visible. The root doesn’t have protecting enamel over it, and the sensitive dentine is exposed.
Why are my teeth becoming more yellow?
With normal aging, as the enamel, which is the white part of the crown, becomes thinner, the yellow dentine starts shining through.
When must I take my child for his first dental check-up?
Your child’s first dental check-up must be with his first birthday.
Are milk teeth important?
Yes. The primary teeth keep space for the permanent teeth. They also help with the formation and growth of the jawbones and chewing muscles.
When do I start brushing my babies’ teeth?
It is important to clean your baby’s mouth from after his/her first milk meal an hour after birth. By cleaning your baby’s mouth twice a day from day one (with gauze around your finger and later a finger brush), you will teach your baby oral hygiene from early and create good habits.
Do I use toothpaste to clean my baby’s mouth?
Yes, use toothpaste without any fluoride e.g. X-gel. The xylitol in the x-gel helps to create the right balance of oral bacteria in the mouth.
What cause a tooth abscess?
Bacteria which cause tooth decay spread to the nerve of the tooth and then form an abscess/infection.
Does pregnancy cause tooth decay or broken teeth?
No, the only way minerals can be removed from your teeth is by bacteria. Normally when pregnant women are nauseous and the acid content in their mouth is high, it gives the bacteria optimum chance to create cavities if not treated properly.
Can I visit the dentist while I am pregnant?
Yes, in fact, it is a good idea to visit your dentist when you are pregnant. Nothing that the dentist uses during a routine check-up, filling or cleaning can harm your baby. Only make sure to cover your stomach with the lead jacket when x-rays are needed.