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   Dentith and Dentith Dental Practice, Southview, 83 South Street, Oakham, Rutland. LE15 6BG 

Treatments

We offer a range of treatments at Dentith & Dentith. To find out more about a particular one, please click on the links below.

Crowns

What is a crown?

A crown is a cap that is placed over a tooth and held in place by dental adhesive or cement.

Crowns are used for several reasons:

  • as a protective cover for badly decayed teeth or fractured teeth
  • as a permanent restoration for teeth with large fillings
  • to correct minor problems in natural teeth like spacing and irregular shape or severe discolouration.

What are crowns made from?

Crowns can be made from a variety of materials.  They can be made from plastic, ceramic or metal alloys.  A combination of metal and ceramic is also possible to maximise strength and simulate the appearance of natural teeth.

How are crowns made?

Firstly, a thorough clinical examination is conducted with radiographs, by the dentist.  The suitability for crowns is assessed and any preparatory work is carried out.  Your dentist will also be able to advise on material choices, treatment sequence and any other concerns you may have.

At the second appointment, the teeth to be crowned are prepared. This involves reduction of the tooth size (usually under local anaesthesia) followed by an impression or mould of the prepared tooth.  This trimming of the tooth is required to create space for the crown to be fitted.  The mould taken is then sent to a laboratory where skilled technicians will fabricate the crown. In the meantime, a temporary crown is made and fitted onto the trimmed tooth.

At the third appointment, the temporary crown is removed and the tooth surfaces cleaned.  The completed crown is tried on the tooth for fit, harmony with the bite, and appearance.  Finally, the crown is cemented onto the prepared tooth with dental cement.

How long do crowns last and how do I care for them?

Crowns are made of inert materials that do not deteriorate over time. However, the underlying tooth is still prone to decay and gum disease.

Ceramic on the surface may chip or fracture. Avoid chewing excessively-hard substances like ice or bones. Daily brushing and flossing are essential for maintaining good oral health as well as keeping the crown trouble-free. The most vulnerable portion of the crown is the margin or the junction between tooth and crown.

Regular check-ups will enable your dentist to detect any problems with your crown and recommend necessary treatment.

Root Canal Treatment

When Is Root Canal Treatment Needed?

The crown of the tooth is made up of the hard, white, enamel layer and a thicker dentine layer. Both these hard layers protect the innermost soft tissues of the tooth called the pulp. The dental pulp contains blood vessels and nerves within and extends from the crown to the tips of the root or roots.

Root canal treatment involves the removal of the pulp tissues from the tooth in the event that it gets infected or inflamed. The pulp can be infected or inflamed due to either deep decay or an extensive restoration that involves the pulp, cracked or fractured tooth due to trauma, excessive wear of enamel and dentine exposing the pulp, and sometimes as a result of severe gum disease.

Signs of pulp damage may include pain, prolonged sensitivity to heat or cold, discoloration of the tooth, swelling, tenderness of the overlying gums or a bad taste in the mouth. On the other hand, there may be no symptoms at all. If pulp inflammation or infection is left untreated, it can eventually cause pain, swelling and loss of the supporting bone.

What Are The Advantages Of Root Canal Treatment

Root canal treatment saves teeth that would otherwise have been extracted.

After root canal treatment the tooth is pulp-less i.e. it has no vital tissues within. However, there are vital tissues surrounding the root e.g. the gum, periodontal membrane and supporting bone. A root canal treated tooth can function normally and can be maintained with routine dental care and oral hygiene measures.

Is Root Canal Treatment Painful?

Root canal treatment procedures are relatively comfortable and often painless as the tooth is anaesthetised during treatment. After treatment, the tooth may be sensitive or tender for a few days due to inflammation of the surrounding tissues. This discomfort can be relieved by taking mild analgesics or painkillers available over the counter at the pharmacy. However, if the pain persists and is severe, or a swelling occurs, you should contact your dentist.

Bridges

What are bridges made of?

Bridges are usually made of a precious metal. If the bridge will show, porcelain is then bonded to the base. Sometimes, there are other non-precious metals used in the base for strength.

Are bridges expensive?

Although a bridge may seem costly they can be a wise investment that will give many years of good service. It will also improve your appearance and bite. A bridge uses the considerable skill of the dentist and technician, and in this way, it’s similar to ordering a piece of hand-made jewellery.

How do I look after my bridge?

You need to clean your bridge every day, to prevent problems such as bad breath and gum disease. You also have to clean under the false tooth every day. Your dentist or hygienist will show you how to use a bridge needle or special floss, as a normal toothbrush cannot reach.

Veneers

What are Veneers

Veneers are thin, custom-made shells crafted of tooth-coloured materials designed to cover the front side of teeth to improve the overall appearance of teeth. They are made of either thin plastic resin or porcelain and can be placed to:

  • correct poorly formed or mildly mal-positioned teeth
  • close gaps between teeth
  • mask internal stains
  • restore partially broken-down teeth

Tooth preparation is minimal and confined to the enamel structure. The veneer is bonded to the tooth structure with tooth-coloured resin cement. Several visits are necessary to complete treatment.

Patients should be aware that this is usually an irreversible process because it’s necessary to remove a small amount of enamel from your teeth to accommodate the shell.

Teeth Whitening

Teeth Whitening

Whitening is a process where the tooth discolouration is ‘whitened’ to a lighter shade. It removes the staining agent through chemical means. It is a safe procedure when carried out under professional supervision. Treatment results usually depend on the severity of the discolouration. Both vital (i.e. live) and non-vital teeth (e.g. tooth with nerve removed) can be bleached and may take several visits to complete. It is not effective on dental restorations such as amalgam fillings, metal or porcelain crowns, etc.

Teeth can discolour for various reasons. The dentist will recommend the most ideal method based on your oral condition after an in-office examination to establish the cause and nature of your tooth discolouration, as well as provide you with more information on the various types of whitening procedures available, duration & frequency of treatment.

Gold Inlays

Gold inlays are restorations placed usually on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth.

An inlay fits within the confines of the teeth. An onlay covers the entire chewing surface of the tooth. These can be made of either plastic resin or porcelain.

The procedure involves removing decayed tooth structure or old fillings, preparing the tooth cavity, taking an impression of the cavity to fabricate a custom-fit inlay or onlay. Two visits are required to complete the treatment.

Porcelain Inlays

Porcelain (tooth coloured) inlays and onlays are restorations placed usually on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth.

An inlay fits within the confines of the teeth. An onlay covers the entire chewing surface of the tooth. These can be made of either plastic resin or porcelain.

The procedure involves removing decayed tooth structure or old fillings, preparing the tooth cavity, taking an impression of the cavity to fabricate a custom-fit inlay or onlay. Two visits are required to complete the treatment.

Dentures

What are dentures?

A denture is a removable prosthesis used to replace missing teeth. Commonly referred to as ‘false teeth’, a denture is usually made of acrylic or a combination of acrylic and metal. A partial denture is fitted to replace some missing teeth whilst a complete denture is indicated when all natural teeth are missing. A good set of dentures helps you to eat, speak, function, and often improves a person’s appearance.

How long does it take to make dentures?

Depending on the complexity of each case, the duration of the treatment will vary. After the initial visit of examination and diagnosis, the subsequent visits will include taking impressions of the mouth, bite registration, try-in of the denture, fitting and review.

What to expect?

New dentures always feel strange when first placed in your mouth. Several days or weeks will be required before you get accustomed to them. Adaptation varies with different persons and often time and experience are essential before dentures can be worn comfortably and function effectively.

Useful suggestions to help you to adapt to the new dentures:

Eating – Eating will take a little practice. Start with soft foods and foods cut into small pieces will help. Chew slowly using both sides of your mouth at the same time to prevent dentures from tipping. Once you become accustomed to chewing, include other foods until you return to your normal diet.

Increased salivary flow – You may experience an increase in salivary flow when the dentures are first inserted. This is a natural response of the salivary glands that will return to normal after a few weeks. You can improve the situation by swallowing more often.

Speech – New dentures may alter your speech initially. Pronouncing certain words may require practice. Reading out loud and repeating troublesome words will speed up the adaptation process. This problem rarely persists beyond two weeks.

Sore spots – Minor irritation caused by surface irregularities or pressure spots on the denture-bearing areas are quite common. Your dentist will relieve the discomfort by adjusting the denture surface. Stop wearing the denture if the irritation is very painful. Consult your dentist immediately.

Fissure Sealants

Deep pits and grooves can be found on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth. Such pits and grooves are termed ‘fissures’ and are usually so narrow that toothbrush bristles and streams of water are not able to clean them effectively. These form a favourable environment for bacteria to flourish, often resulting in tooth decay.

What can be done?

Fissure sealants can be applied to the teeth. Fissure sealants are special materials used by dentists to seal off pits and fissures from the oral environment. Sealing the tooth surface protects fissures from bacteria and fermentable foods like sugar and starches to prevent decay from starting deep within the fissures. Any tooth with pits and fissures can be treated, provided the surface to be filled is sound and has not been previously filled. The most commonly treated teeth are the molars and premolars.

How are sealants applied?

Sealants are applied easily and painlessly. No drilling is required. The tooth is properly cleaned, treated, dried, and the sealant applied. It then hardens to form a protective coating over the tooth.

How effective are sealants and how long can they last?

Many studies show sealants to be very effective in preventing decay in fissures. They do, however, require regular maintenance by your dentist. This can be performed with your six- monthly check-up. Recent studies show that a properly placed sealant will last as long as a typical amalgam filling. Even if a sealant is damaged or lost, it is easily repaired and replaced. Regular maintenance by your dentist will help them last. This can be done with your six-monthly check-up.

When should sealants be put on the teeth?

Sealants are most effective when applied after the eruption of the tooth. Early application ensures pits and fissures are sealed before the decay process begins.

Gum Disease

Why might I be susceptible?

Periodontal disease is the Number One cause of tooth loss amongst adults. This is because a certain number of people (15-20%) have immune systems that overreact to the bad bacteria in their mouths. When this overreaction occurs, the immune system attacks and breaks down the bone and tissue that surround the tooth. This destruction is not predictable and can occur sporadically. None of us knows if we are part of this 15-20% because we can’t usually feel or notice the onset of gum and bone (periodontal) disease. Both adults and children should be routinely checked for gum disease.

Keeping your gums in shape

Keep in mind that healthy gums DON’T BLEED. You are the key player on the hygiene team. If you don’t do the essential daily brushing and flossing, the rest of your dental team (the dentist and hygienist) is playing short-handed. And sometimes with everyone fighting the good fight, stubborn plaque and bacteria will require some new maintenance techniques for battling gum infection.

GUM DISEASE IS NOT CURABLE,

BUT IT IS TREATABLE,

AND IN MOST CASES, CONTROLLABLE

Are you living at high risk for gum disease?

Smoking: Numerous studies have shown that smokers have more gum disease. Smokers have increased levels of tartar in the mouth, and experience more tissue irritation, which makes their gums more susceptible to disease. Smokers have more bone loss and heal less quickly than non-smokers.

Stress: When our immune system is stressed it is difficult to fight off the bacteria that cause gum infections.

Dental neglect: Avoiding the dentist is a lifestyle choice that puts you at risk of contracting diseases of the mouth, teeth and gums.

Floss Your hygienist or dentist works to prevent infection in your mouth from entering the bloodstream and reaching vital organs.

Heart disease: Gum inflammation products and bacteria in gum disease can cause heart disease, and in some cases, double the risk of a fatal heart attack. In addition, bacteria from your mouth may combine with blood-clotting cells called platelets, forming heart-stopping blood clots.

Stroke: New studies show that 70% of the fatty deposits of stroke sufferers contain bacteria, of which 40% comes from the mouth.

Diabetics: This group of people are more likely to have gum disease than most people and gum disease makes it more difficult for diabetics to control their blood sugar.

Premature birth: Pregnant women who have periodontal disease may be as much as seven times more likely to have a baby born early. Some research suggests that gum disease may increase the level of hormones that induce labour.

Interdental Brushing

As a result of improved oral hygiene and fluoride, more people are keeping their own teeth into old age but in order to continue to maintain healthy teeth and gums, a regime of brushing and rinsing twice a day should be combined with interdental brushing – cleaning between the teeth.

The major cause of tooth decay and gum disease is plaque. The formation of plaque is continuous and its growth cannot be stopped. Whilst brushing controls plaque formation around the surfaces of your teeth, it does not reach between your teeth and that’s why interdental brushing once a day is so crucial.

Cleaning between your teeth is made possible by the use of the following:

  • Dental floss
  • Interdental brushes
  • Single tuft toothbrushes
  • Dental sticks
  • Rubber tip stimulators
  • Irrigation device

Consult your dentist and hygienist to learn more about the right method of interdental brushing for you

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