It is generally recommended that you visit the dentist every 6 to 12 months. Next time you visit, ask your dentist how regularly they recommend you return for your check-up and clean. Some people are more prone to decay or tartar build up and therefore require monitoring and cleaning more regularly. You may be advised to come in 6 monthly. If you are low risk for decay or gum issues your dentist may tell you 12 monthly visits will suffice. In cases where gum disease is present, your dentist or hygienist may recommend 3-4 monthly cleans in order to get your dental health under control.
As you can see, it really depends on your dental health and your goals for your dental health as to how regularly we recommend you visit the dentist.
A crown is a cap that is glued onto your natural tooth. Nowadays, crowns are most commonly made out of porcelain and are matched in colour to your teeth – to the naked eye you may not even be able to tell there is a crown there.
The main reason why your dentist would recommend a crown is to make the tooth stronger, when it has been weakened by large fillings, decay or a crack. A crown can also improve the way a tooth looks.
A crown typically is completed over two dentist appointments. The first appointment involves removing the decay, existing fillings and preparing the tooth for the new crown. We will pick a shade of porcelain to match your existing teeth – or a whiter shade if you wish to enhance the appearance.
Your dentist will then make a Temporary Crown which will sit on the tooth until your next appointment.
At your Crown Insert appointment, we will remove the temporary crown and try in your new porcelain crown. We will check the colour, fit, shape and size of the crown. If both you and the dentist are happy with your new crown we will permanently cement it to your tooth.
In some cases, a crown can be prepared and completed in a single visit to the dentist. This involves digital technology called CEREC. There are some differences between a single visit vs. two visit crowns and your dentist will help you to choose which option is best for you.
Crowns are built to last many years. However, in order to make your crown last as long as possible it is important to brush and floss your crown regularly. Even though a crown is made of porcelain, the natural tooth can still decay at the gum line and the tooth itself is still at risk of gingivitis and gum disease. It is also important to visit your dentist for regular check ups 6-12 monthly so that they can detect any issues early.
Dental technology has advanced with time. Until recently, it was very common for crowns to be made from metal and porcelain. The inside of the crown was made of metal and the outside was covered in white porcelain to make the crown more aesthetic. Unfortunately, gum recession, wear, age and time can mean the metal border of the crown can be exposed, causing a dark line along the gum below the porcelain. It is important to have this checked by your dentist to rule out decay, discolouration of the natural tooth, or a broken crown. One option is to replace the metal and porcelain crown with a crown made of porcelain only. If you think this may be happening with your crowns, speak with your dentist.
There can be many reasons why a tooth or crown can break. This could be due to a crack, fracture or decay. Always book a visit to your dentist if your crown breaks or comes off. In some cases, a crown can be re-cemented. But this is only if the tooth underneath is not compromised or broken. You may require a new crown and your dentist will discuss this with you if it is necessary.
When you visit your dentist for a crown or bridge, we will always take a shade of your natural teeth and photographs. We then send these to the ceramist so that they can match the colour, shape and size of your new crown or bridge to your natural teeth. Dental technology has greatly advanced over the years and we can now make lifelike crowns that blend with your natural teeth. It is always important to discuss your goal with your dentist. Some patients would prefer their crown or bridge to be whiter or brighter than their natural teeth for cosmetic reasons. Others want it to blend in. We will always listen to your ideas and concerns. Just let us know!
A root canal treated tooth may have a higher risk of fracture without the protection of a crown. Therefore your dentist or endodontist may recommend a crown be fitted soon after treatment. A crown may be needed to protect, strengthen and further seal the tooth. It will also help to restore the tooth to normal function and size so that it can be used when biting and chewing. A crown will also help to restore the appearance of the tooth – as root canal treated teeth can discolour with time. Speak with your dentist to find out whether your root canal treated tooth requires a crown.
When possible, always visit your dentist for a toothache. We will be able to assist you with pain management, and find out the cause of the toothache. Often, people take antibiotics for a toothache prescribed by their doctor. Whilst antibiotics can help to make the pain subside, this is a short term fix and is not getting to the cause. This means the pain and infection can come back again, sometimes worse! Putting off visiting your dentist for a sore tooth can mean it requires more invasive (and often more expensive) treatment.
There are two main ways to straighten teeth. The first is with traditional braces (these can be metal or ceramic brackets). The second option is clear aligners, typically referred to as Invisalign – which is a very popular brand of clear aligners. Depending on what your goals are for straightening your teeth one option may be better suited than the other. Often for more severe crowding or jaw discrepancies e.g. severe overbite or underbite, traditional braces may be more suited. However, in order to work out which option is best for you we recommend a consultation with your orthodontist or dentist.
Root canals get a really bad wrap in movies and pop culture…! A root canal is required for a dying or infected tooth. Often a dying or infected tooth causes severe toothache and you may be experiencing a lot of pain from the tooth in question. When you come to visit the dentist, we will give the tooth local anaesthetic to numb the area so that you do not feel any pain. In some cases, a heavily infected tooth can be difficult to numb and you may require extra anaesthetic.
The actual procedure of a root canal should not be painful once the tooth is numb. Root canals are generally completed over two to three appointments. The goal of the first appointment is to get you out of pain and remove the infected or dying nerve and you should generally be much more comfortable after this first visit. We are here to help you and get you out of pain. Please call your dentist if you have a toothache.
Any Surgical or Invasive Procedure Carries Risks. Before Proceeding With a Surgical or Invasive Procedure, You Should Seek a Second Opinion From an Appropriately Qualified Health Practitioner.