FAQs2022-02-15T03:37:30+03:00

Frequently Asked Questions About Dental Health

All Your Dental Needs Under One Roof

Our FAQs are the most commonly-asked questions put to our Dental Helpline over the last year. If you have a question for us, you can ask our Dental Helpline by telephone or email. Alternatively, please take a look at our library of oral health information, which contains a wide range of oral health advice in an easy-to-understand Q&A format.

Dentist & Dental Questions

I have some of my own teeth. Can I still have implants?2022-02-06T21:23:10+03:00

Yes. You can have any number of teeth replaced with implants – from one single tooth to a complete set.

Aging and Dental Health2022-02-06T18:34:43+03:00

As you age, it becomes even more important to take good care of your teeth and dental health. One common misconception is that losing your teeth is inevitable. This is not true. If cared for properly, your teeth can last a lifetime.

Your mouth changes as you age. The nerves in your teeth can become smaller, making your teeth less sensitive to cavities or other problems. If you don’t get regular dental exams, this in turn can lead to these problems not being diagnosed until it is too late.

If you want to feel good, stay healthy, and look great throughout life, you might be surprised what a difference a healthy mouth makes.

I have heard gum disease is linked with other health conditions – is this true?2022-02-06T22:07:38+03:00

In recent years gum disease has been linked with general health conditions such as diabetes, strokes, cardiovascular disease, poor pregnancy outcomes and even dementia. More research is needed to understand how these links work but there is more and more evidence that having a healthy mouth and gums can help improve your general health and reduce the costs of medical treatment.

What if my child is very nervous about going to the dentist?2022-02-06T22:15:02+03:00

Children can sense fear in their parents, so it is important not to let your child feel that a visit to the dental team is something to be worried about. Try to be supportive if your child needs to have any dental treatment. If you have any fears of your own about going to the dentist, don’t let your child hear you talk about them.

Regular visits to the dental team are essential in helping your child get used to the surroundings and what happens there. A child can be much more anxious if it is their first visit to a dental practice. Pain and distress can happen at any time and it is important to prepare your child with regular visits.

Who are the best candidates for teeth whitening?2022-02-06T18:56:04+03:00

The best candidates for teeth whitening are those with healthy teeth and gums. You will be advised to get a full dental check-up prior to your whitening appointment to ensure that you don’t have cavities or any other issues with your oral health. For best results, it is recommended that you have a clean prior to your appointment.

How can my dentist and hygienist help me prevent decay?2022-02-06T23:03:31+03:00

Your dental team will show you what areas you need to take most care of when cleaning. They will also show you how to brush correctly and clean in between your teeth with ‘interdental’ brushes or floss.

What are porcelain inlays?2022-02-06T23:09:23+03:00

Your dental team can now use digital technology (called CADCAM) to design and prepare perfectly fitted porcelain inlays in just one or two visits. Porcelain inlays can also be made in a laboratory but this will need at least two visits to your dentist. Porcelain can be hard wearing and long lasting. It can also be coloured to match your natural tooth. Again, this type of filling can be quite expensive.

How is treatment carried out?2022-02-06T20:41:52+03:00

Orthodontic treatment can be done by many sorts of appliances, which most people call a ‘brace’.

How do I know if I have gum disease?2022-02-06T22:07:02+03:00

The first sign is blood on your toothbrush or in the toothpaste you spit out after cleaning your teeth. Your gums may also bleed when you are eating, leaving a bad taste in your mouth. Your breath may also become unpleasant.

Do people die from mouth cancer?2022-02-06T20:45:54+03:00

Yes. More than 2,300 people in the UK die from mouth cancer every year. Many of these deaths could be prevented if the cancer was diagnosed early enough. As it is, people with mouth cancer are more likely to die than those having cervical cancer or melanoma skin cancer.

What toothpastes are there?2022-02-06T21:06:00+03:00

There are many toothpastes, and some are designed for different needs. There are toothpastes for gum health, sensitive teeth and for smokers, ones with anti-bacterial agents, and others which help to restore the natural whiteness of your teeth. Your dental team can recommend the most suitable toothpaste for your needs.

What about children’s toothbrushes?2022-02-06T21:05:42+03:00

It is just as important for children to use the correct toothbrush. Look for a small-headed toothbrush with soft nylon bristles, suitable for the age of your child. There are many novelty toothbrushes for children that help encourage them to brush for the correct length of time. There are also power toothbrushes that have been specially designed for children to use. Children under the age of 7 should be supervised while brushing.

If I had gum disease when I had my own teeth, will I get it with the implants?2022-02-06T21:25:09+03:00

Yes, if you don’t care for them well enough. If you keep them clean and have them regularly checked by your dental team you should not have any problems. Smoking also affects the health of implants. So, if you smoke, you may need to look after your implants more carefully. Some dentists will not place dental implants in people who are smokers.

How do I care for my crown?2022-02-06T22:58:41+03:00

It is important to keep the crown just as clean as you would your natural teeth. The crown itself cannot decay, but decay can start where the edge of the crown joins the tooth. Brush last thing at night and at least one other time during the day with a fluoride toothpaste, and clean in between your teeth with ‘interdental’ brushes or floss.

What is periodontal disease?2022-02-06T21:36:18+03:00

Long-standing gingivitis can turn into periodontal disease. There are a number of types of periodontal disease and they all affect the tissues supporting the teeth. As the disease gets worse the bone anchoring the teeth in the jaw is lost, making the teeth loose. If this is not treated, the teeth may eventually fall out.

Are electric or power toothbrushes a good idea?2022-02-06T21:05:23+03:00

Some people prefer to use a power toothbrush. They are especially useful if you have limited movement or find cleaning particularly difficult. These toothbrushes usually have heads which either rotate and oscillate, or pulsate. Some power toothbrushes are meant to be thrown away when the battery runs down, and some are rechargeable. You can buy power toothbrushes from your local pharmacy, retailer or dental team.

Power toothbrushes with rotating and oscillating heads have been proven to be the most effective. Many power toothbrushes have timers built in to help you brush for the correct amount of time.

Should I use a fluoride toothpaste?2022-02-06T21:06:20+03:00

Yes. Most dentists recommend using fluoride toothpaste to prevent decay. Fluoride has been proven to reduce tooth decay by at least 40 percent, so everyone should be encouraged to use fluoride toothpaste. There may already be fluoride in your drinking water. Research has shown that children living in areas that don’t have fluoride in the drinking water have more tooth decay than children living in areas that do have fluoride in the drinking water. Ask your dental team what amount of fluoride is right for you.

It is important to use only a small, pea-sized amount of toothpaste for children, as they are likely to swallow some of it. All children up to three years old should use a toothpaste with a fluoride level of at least 1000ppm (parts per million). After three years old, everyone should use a family toothpaste that has 1350ppm to 1500ppm of fluoride. After brushing you should spit out the toothpaste rather than rinsing, to prevent the fluoride being washed away.

If your dental team feel that you have a high risk of tooth decay, they may recommend and prescribe a toothpaste with more fluoride in it. This high level of fluoride can offer more protection to people more at risk of decay.

What is the dental hygienist’s role in the practice?2022-02-06T19:07:25+03:00

Dental hygienists are mainly concerned with ‘preventive’ dental health and treating gum disease – showing you correct home care and helping you to keep your teeth and gums healthy. This includes professionally cleaning your teeth by removing plaque and tartar (usually called a ‘scale and polish’ or a prophylaxis). However, perhaps their most important role is showing you the best way to keep your teeth free of plaque. Plaque is a sticky coating that forms constantly on your teeth. Hygienists also give advice about diet and about preventing tooth decay. The hygienist will work with your dental team to give you the care that is tailored to your needs.

How can mouth cancer be detected early?2022-02-06T20:47:01+03:00

Mouth cancer can often be spotted in its early stages by your dental team during a thorough mouth examination. If mouth cancer is diagnosed early, then the chances of a cure are good. Many people with mouth cancer go to their dentist or doctor too late.

What is dental decay?2022-02-06T23:02:39+03:00

Dental decay happens when the enamel and dentine of a tooth become softened by acid attack after you have eaten or drunk anything containing sugars. Over time, the acid makes a cavity (hole) in the tooth. ‘Dental decay’ is the same as tooth decay and is also known as ‘dental caries’.

Why would I need a crown?2022-02-06T22:40:04+03:00

Crowns are an ideal way to repair teeth that have been broken, or have been weakened by tooth decay or a very large filling. A crown could be used for a number of other reasons, for example:

  • You may have a discoloured filling and would like to improve the appearance of the tooth.
  • You may have had a root filling and need a crown to protect what is left of the tooth.
  • It may help to hold a bridge or denture firmly in place.
What will an x-ray show?2022-02-06T18:57:16+03:00

X-rays can show decay that may not be seen directly in the mouth: for example, under a filling, or between the teeth. They can show whether you have an infection in the root of your tooth and how severe the infection is.

In children an x-ray can show any teeth that haven’t come through yet, and show the dental team whether there is enough space for the teeth to come through. In adults, it can show any impacted wisdom teeth that may need to be removed, before they cause any problems.

Are x-rays dangerous?2022-02-06T18:57:16+03:00

The amount of radiation received from a dental x-ray is extremely small. We get more radiation from natural sources, including minerals in the soil, and from our general environment.

With modern techniques and equipment, risks are kept as small as possible. However, your dental team will always take care to use x-rays only when they need to.

I have very sensitive teeth. Can I still go for teeth whitening?2022-02-06T18:56:04+03:00

Yes. A lot of people who have sensitive teeth have exposed tooth roots surface. When we do in-office whitening, we protect the exposed roots and gum tissue from any bleach, and this eliminates sensitivity during whitening. The alternative is to do whitening at home. We would do a desensitizing treatment and give you a toothpaste for sensitivity before we send you off to do everything on your own.

How can my dentist fill a gap in my mouth?2022-02-06T22:29:59+03:00

If a tooth is missing, or needs taking out, there are several ways to fill the gap that is left. In some cases it is important to try to replace any missing teeth to balance the way your jaw bites. If you have several missing teeth, the remaining teeth are under more pressure. This can lead to broken fillings or even jaw problems.

A partial denture is the simplest way to replace missing teeth. However, some people find dentures uncomfortable and eventually decide to look at alternatives, such as bridges or implants.

I have been scared of the dentist for a long time – what is it like now?2022-02-06T20:51:40+03:00

Dental techniques have improved so much over the last few years that modern dental treatment can now be completely painless. Despite this, most people still feel a little nervous at the thought of going to the dentist. If you have not been to see a dentist for some time, you will probably find that things have improved a lot since your last visit. The general attitude is likely to be more relaxed, the dental techniques and safety procedures will be much better, and the equipment will be more up to date.

Why is my child crying with tooth pain?2022-02-04T00:12:18+03:00

If your child wakes in the night crying with pain in the mouth it can be distressing for everyone involved. Such pain is usually an indication that something is wrong, and could be a sign of infection, tooth decay, an erupting tooth, an abscess or exposed dental nerves.

Our advice: Contact us straight away to arrange an immediate visit so we can treat the problem and soothe the pain. Use suitable pain-relieving oral gels (only those approved for use with children). Avoid giving child hot or very cold fluids or food which could make the pain worse.

How does the dentist make a crown?2022-02-06T22:25:48+03:00

The usual method for fitting a crown involves shaping the tooth under local anaesthetic and then taking an impression using a rubber-like material. The impression is then sent to the laboratory along with the details of the shade to be used, and the technician makes the crown.

How can smoking affect my oral health?2022-02-06T19:37:06+03:00

Most people are now aware that smoking is bad for their health. It can cause many different medical problems and, in some cases, fatal diseases. However, many people don’t realise the damage that smoking does to their mouth, gums and teeth.

Smoking can lead to tooth staining, gum disease, tooth loss, and in more severe cases mouth cancer.

How can I prevent bad breath if I wear dentures?2022-02-06T22:11:45+03:00

It is just as important to clean dentures as it is to clean your natural teeth. Bits of food can become caught around the edges of dentures and clasps, and the food can rot if you do not clean them thoroughly.

You should keep a separate toothbrush for cleaning your dentures. The general rule is: brush, soak and brush again. Clean your dentures over a bowl of water in case you drop them. Brush your dentures before soaking them, to help remove any bits of food.

Soak the dentures in a specialist cleaner for a short time and then brush the dentures again. Brush them like you would brush your natural teeth.

Make sure you clean all the surfaces of the dentures, including the surface which fits against your gums. If you notice a build-up of stains or scale, have your dentures cleaned by your dental team. Most dentists still recommend a small- to medium-head toothbrush, or a specialised denture brush if you can get one.

Amalgam (Silver-Colored Dental Fillings)2022-02-06T18:56:54+03:00

Dental amalgam is made from a combination of metals that include mercury, silver, tin, and copper. Sometimes described as “silver-colored” fillings, dental amalgam has been used by dentists for more than 100 years because it lasts a long time and is less expensive than other cavity-filling materials such as tooth-colored composites or gold fillings.

Because of their durability, these silver-colored fillings are often the best choice for large cavities or those that occur in the back teeth where a lot of force is needed to chew. Amalgam hardens quickly so it is useful in areas that are difficult to keep dry during placement, such as below the gum line. Because it takes less time to place than tooth-colored fillings, amalgam is also an effective material for children and special needs people who may have a difficult time staying still during treatment.

One disadvantage of amalgam is that these types of fillings are not natural looking, especially when the filling is near the front of the mouth, where it may show when you laugh or speak. Also, to prepare the tooth, the dentist may need to remove more tooth structure to place an amalgam filling than for other types of fillings.

I haven’t been to the dentist in a long time, will I need a lot of treatment?2022-02-06T20:52:28+03:00

Years ago it was normal for people to need fillings every time they went to their dentist, but things have changed for the better now. The dental team will now want to help you have, and keep, a healthy mouth and healthy teeth. Using a fluoride toothpaste will help to strengthen your teeth and prevent decay. Therefore, you may be surprised at how little treatment you need.

Teeth are for life and can last a lifetime if they are looked after properly. If you can get your mouth healthy, with the help of the dental team, you should need less treatment and there will be less for them to do in the future. It is important to keep up your regular visits to the dental team. The team will not just check for tooth decay, but will also help you prevent gum disease. Once your mouth is healthy, your visits to the practice will often just be easy sessions for checking and cleaning.

What causes dental erosion?2022-02-06T23:04:29+03:00

Every time you eat or drink anything acidic, the enamel on your teeth becomes softer for a short while, and loses some of its mineral content. Your saliva will slowly cancel out this acidity in your mouth and get it back to its natural balance. However, if this acid attack happens too often, your mouth does not have a chance to repair itself and tiny bits of enamel can be brushed away. Over time, you start to lose the surface of your teeth.

How do I go about getting orthodontic treatment?2022-02-06T20:43:29+03:00

The first thing to do is to visit your own dental team and get their advice. Your dental team will know whether you need treatment and will make the necessary arrangements.

What are composite fillings?2022-02-06T23:08:29+03:00

Composite fillings are strong, but may not be as hard wearing as amalgam fillings. Composite fillings are tooth coloured and are made from powdered glass quartz, silica or other ceramic particles added to a resin base. After the tooth is prepared, the filling is bonded onto the area and a light shone onto it to set it. The dentist will choose a shade to match your own teeth, although over time staining can happen.

After treatment for a cracked tooth, will my tooth completely heal?2022-02-06T22:37:55+03:00

Unlike broken bones, the crack in a tooth will never heal completely. After treatment, a crack may get worse and you could still lose the tooth. It is still important that you get treatment, because most cracked teeth can work normally for years after treatment. Your dental team will be able to tell you more about your particular problem and recommend a treatment.

Do all teeth crack in the same way?2022-02-06T22:35:15+03:00

No. Teeth can crack in several different ways:

  • Cracked tooth: This is when a crack runs from the biting surface of the tooth down towards the root. Sometimes it goes below the gum line and into the root. A cracked tooth is not split into two parts but the soft, inner tissue of the tooth is usually damaged.
  • Craze lines: These are tiny cracks that affect only the outer enamel of the tooth. They are common in all adult teeth and cause no pain. Craze lines need no treatment.
  • Cracked cusp: The cusp is the pointed part of the biting surface of the tooth. If a cusp becomes damaged, the tooth may break. You will usually get a sharp pain in that tooth when biting.
  • Split tooth: This is often the result of an untreated cracked tooth. The tooth splits into two parts. Vertical root fractures are cracks that start in the root and go up towards the biting surface.
Do the implants show?2022-02-06T21:25:46+03:00

Most implants look exactly like natural teeth.

What will my tooth look like after treatment?2022-02-06T19:47:28+03:00

In the past, a root-filled tooth would often darken after treatment. However, with modern techniques this does not usually happen. If there is any discolouration, there are several treatments that will restore the natural appearance.

Are there any risks from amalgam fillings?2022-02-06T23:08:11+03:00

The mercury in dental amalgam is not poisonous once it is combined with the other materials in the filling. Its chemical nature changes so that it is harmless.

Research into the safety of dental amalgam has been carried out for over 100 years. So far, no reputable ‘controlled’ studies have found a connection between amalgam fillings and any medical problem.

Why would I need an x-ray?2022-02-06T18:57:16+03:00

Early tooth decay does not tend to show many physical signs. Sometimes the tooth looks healthy, but your dental team will be able to see from an x-ray whether you have any decay under the enamel, any possible infections in the root, or any bone loss around the tooth.

X-rays can help the dental team to see in between your teeth or under the edge of your fillings. Finding and treating dental problems at an early stage can save both time and money.

In children, x-rays can be used to show where the adult teeth are and when they will appear. They are also used in the same way for adults when the wisdom teeth start to come through.

How can my dentist help?2022-02-06T22:10:27+03:00

If you do have bad breath, you will need to start a routine for keeping your mouth clean and fresh. Regular check-ups will allow your dentist to watch out for any places where plaque is caught between your teeth. Your dental team will be able to clean all those areas that are difficult to reach. They will also be able to show you the best way to clean your teeth and gums, and show you any areas you may be missing, including your tongue.

Will I need to have treatment?2022-02-06T22:36:32+03:00

Yes. It is important to get advice as soon as possible to help the treatment be more effective. If they are not treated, cracked teeth can lead to the death of the nerve, and an abscess might grow. The tooth could need root canal treatment or even taking out. In severe cases the tooth can actually split in two. If this happens your dentist will not be able to save the tooth and it will need to be taken out.

When will my baby’s teeth appear?2022-02-06T23:01:23+03:00

Your baby should start teething at around 6 months old and will continue until all 20 baby teeth come through. At around 6 years old, the adult teeth will begin to appear. This will continue until all the adult teeth, except the wisdom teeth, have come through at around 14 years old.

For more information, visit children’s teeth.

Why do teeth crack?2022-02-06T22:35:44+03:00

Many things can cause teeth to crack, such as:

  • Extreme tooth grinding, which can put the teeth under enormous pressure.
  • Large fillings that weaken the tooth.
  • Chewing or biting on something hard: for example ice, boiled sweets, fruit stones or meat bones.
  • A blow to the chin or lower jaw.
  • Gum disease, if there has been bone loss. This could make the teeth more likely to suffer from root fractures.
  • Sudden changes in mouth temperature.
I have gone for a check-up, what do I do next?2022-02-06T20:54:36+03:00

Take things one step at a time. Discuss any proposed treatment with your dentist, and decide what you feel you can cope with. This may be no more than an examination with a dental mirror first. If you succeed with that, you may feel you could have your teeth polished next, perhaps by the dental hygienist. Don’t be afraid to say when you have had enough – there is usually no reason to hurry through the dental treatment.

When should I take my child to the dentist?2022-02-06T22:12:54+03:00

It is recommended that children should go to the dentist with their parents as soon as possible. You should then take them regularly, as often as your dental team recommend. This will let them get used to the noises, smells and surroundings and prepare them for future visits. The earlier these visits start, the more relaxed the children will be.

What are glass ionomer fillings?2022-02-06T23:08:47+03:00

Glass ionomer fillings form a chemical link with the tooth. They may also release fluoride, which helps to prevent further tooth decay. This type of filling is fairly weak. Because of this, they are usually only used on baby teeth and ‘non-biting’ surfaces such as around the ‘necks’ of the teeth. Little preparation is needed as the filling bonds directly to the tooth.

What is a cracked tooth?2022-02-06T22:34:28+03:00

A cracked tooth is a tooth that has become broken.

Do implants hurt?2022-02-06T21:23:46+03:00

Placing an implant is often easier than taking a tooth out and is usually done using a simple local anaesthetic. You will not feel any pain at the time but, just like after an extraction, you may feel some discomfort during the week after the surgery.

Sometimes your dentist might give you a sedative if you are very nervous or if the case is a complicated one. General anaesthetics are rarely used for implants and are generally only used for very complicated cases.

Should I have an x-ray if I’m pregnant?2022-02-06T18:57:16+03:00

You should always tell your dental team if you are pregnant. They will take extra care and will probably not use x-rays unless they really have to, especially during the first three months.

What is mouth cancer?2022-02-06T20:45:07+03:00

Most people have heard of cancer affecting parts of the body such as the lungs or breasts. However, cancer can appear in the mouth, where the disease can affect the lips, tongue, cheeks and throat.

Can smoking cause bad breath?2022-02-06T22:10:08+03:00

Yes. Tobacco causes its own type of bad breath. The only answer in this case is to stop smoking. As well as making your breath smell, smoking causes staining and loss of taste, and irritates the gums. People who smoke are more likely to suffer from gum disease and have a greater risk of developing cancer of the mouth, lung cancer and heart disease. Ask your dentist, pharmacist or healthcare professional for help with stopping smoking. If you do stop smoking, but still have bad breath, then you need to see your dental team or doctor for advice.

What are dental hygienists and dental therapists?2022-02-06T19:07:03+03:00

Dental hygienists and dental therapists are specially trained to work with the dentist to give care to patients and can help with your treatment plan. Many are qualified as both hygienist and therapist.

They play an important part in dental health care.

How are veneers fitted?2022-02-06T22:16:40+03:00

A small amount of enamel is removed from the tooth, usually the same thickness as the veneer will be. The dental team take an impression and send it to a dental technician, who makes the veneer in a laboratory. The veneer is then bonded to the tooth to form a strong and natural-looking repair.

What is tooth jewellery?2022-02-06T19:31:03+03:00

Tooth jewellery involves sticking small jewels onto the teeth using dental cement. They should be fitted by a dentist, who can also easily remove them if necessary.

It is important to keep the area around the jewel clean, as plaque can easily build up around it and you will be more likely to get tooth decay.

You can find more information about tooth jewellery by visiting our Safe Smiles campaign.

What do I need to clean my teeth properly?2022-02-06T21:04:46+03:00

There are many different oral care products you can get today. Your dental team will be able to recommend the best toothbrush and toothpaste for you to use, as well as the best way to clean between your teeth.

My teeth are stained, what toothpaste should I use?2022-02-06T21:06:43+03:00

There are toothpastes which can help to remove staining. These are often called ‘whitening’ toothpastes. It is important to realise that these toothpastes can only help you to restore the original shade of your teeth and will not change their natural colour. If you feel you need something stronger to whiten your teeth, talk to your dental team about how this could be done. If you are a smoker, there are special smokers’ toothpastes that will remove the staining that can build up over time.

What is a mouthguard?2022-02-06T20:48:34+03:00

A mouthguard is a specially made, rubber-like cover which fits exactly over your teeth and gums, cushioning them and protecting them from damage.

Will I need a temporary veneer between visits?2022-02-06T19:11:33+03:00

Because the preparation of the tooth is so slight you will probably not need a temporary veneer. The tooth will look very much the same after preparation, but will feel slightly less smooth.

Do I need to see my dentist during pregnancy?2022-02-06T22:59:51+03:00

Yes. Because of hormone changes during pregnancy, some women’s dental health needs more care during this time. For example, you may notice that your gums seem to bleed more easily.

How do I know I have dental erosion?2022-02-06T23:04:12+03:00

Erosion usually shows up as hollows in the teeth and a general wearing away of the tooth surface and biting edges. This can expose the dentine underneath, which is a darker, yellower colour than the enamel. Because the dentine is sensitive, your teeth can also be more sensitive to heat and cold, or acidic foods and drinks.

What are amalgam fillings?2022-02-06T23:07:54+03:00

Amalgam fillings are silver coloured. They are made by combining mercury and a silver alloy (50% mercury, 35% silver, and 15% tin, copper and other metals). Amalgam is long lasting and hard wearing and has been used in fillings for at least 150 years. It is economical to use and it is not unusual for an amalgam filling to last 15 to 20 years.

This kind of filling is usually used on the back ‘chewing’ teeth. Before the filling can be placed, the dentist must prepare the area by removing all the decay and shaping the cavity to hold the filling in place. If the tooth is badly broken, your dentist may need to place a small stainless steel pin to help secure the filling.

What causes dental decay?2022-02-06T23:02:55+03:00

Dental decay is caused by plaque acids that gradually dissolve away the enamel and dentine of the tooth. Decay damages your teeth and may lead to the tooth needing to be filled or even taken out.

How can I protect my teeth when playing sports?2022-02-06T19:32:39+03:00

A mouthguard will help protect you against broken and damaged teeth, and even a broken or dislocated jaw.

It is important to wear a professionally made mouthguard whenever you play any sport that involves contact or moving objects.

Ask your dental team about a mouthguard. It is a small price to pay for peace of mind.

Find out more information about mouthguards and how important they are by visiting our Safe Smiles campaign.

When would I need a mouthguard?2022-02-06T20:48:52+03:00

It is important to wear a professionally made mouthguard whenever you play sport that involves physical contact or moving objects. This includes: cricket, hockey and football – which can cause broken and damaged teeth; and American football, boxing and rugby – which can all cause broken or dislocated jaws. A mouthguard will help protect against these happening.

My tooth is badly broken – what can I do?2022-02-06T22:17:26+03:00

When a tooth is badly broken or heavily filled, the dentist may need to crown or ‘cap’ it to restore its appearance and strength.

Can I prevent bad breath?2022-02-06T22:11:04+03:00

To keep your breath fresh, you must get rid of any gum disease, and keep your mouth clean and fresh. If you do have bad breath, try keeping a diary of all the foods you eat and list any medicines you are taking. Take this diary to your dentist, who may be able to suggest ways to solve the problem.

  • Brush your teeth and gums last thing at night and at least one other time during the day, with a fluoride toothpaste.
  • Don’t forget to brush your tongue as well, or use a tongue scraper. Cut down on how often you have sugary food and drinks.
  • Visit your dental team regularly, as often as they recommend.
  • Clean in between your teeth with ‘interdental’ brushes or floss at least once a day – brushing alone only cleans up to about 60 percent of the surface of your teeth.
  • There are other products you can buy to clean between your teeth.
  • Use a mouthwash – some contain antibacterial agents that could kill bacteria that make your breath smell unpleasant.

If you continue to suffer from bad breath visit your dental team to make sure that the mouthwash is not covering up a more serious underlying problem. Chew sugar-free gum – it helps your mouth produce saliva and stops it drying out. A dry mouth can lead to bad breath.

What can I do to help relieve the discomfort of wisdom teeth?2022-02-06T18:59:24+03:00

A mouthwash of medium-hot water with a teaspoonful of salt will help to reduce gum soreness and inflammation (check that it is not too hot before using it). Swish the salt water around the tooth, trying to get into the areas your toothbrush cannot reach. Do this several times a day.

An antibacterial mouthwash containing chlorhexidine can also reduce the inflammation. Pain-relieving tablets such as paracetamol or ibuprofen can also be useful in the short term, but talk to your dental team if the pain continues. The tablets should always be swallowed and not placed on the area.

What do I do if I knock a tooth out?2022-02-06T20:50:01+03:00

Firstly, if you can find the tooth and it is clean, put it back into the socket yourself. If you can’t put it back, put it straight into a cup of milk or keep it in your mouth.

  • Don’t panic.
  • Do go to a dentist or hospital as soon as possible.
  • Do take painkillers if you need to, but don’t take any medication containing aspirin as this can cause the bleeding to get worse.
  • Don’t hold the tooth by the root, as teeth are surrounded by fragile ligaments which need to be kept intact if the tooth is to be put back in.
  • Don’t clean the tooth with disinfectant or water, or let it dry out.
  • Don’t put aspirin or clove oil on the wound.

The sooner the tooth is replaced, the better the chances of success. If you have not managed to do it yourself, the dentist will put the tooth back. They may use a dental splint to fasten the tooth against the teeth on either side. In most cases this is successful, and once the splint is removed the tooth is stable. However, you will almost certainly need more treatment in the future.

What other tooth-whitening methods are there?2022-02-06T22:33:45+03:00

There is now laser whitening or ‘power whitening’. During this treatment a light or laser is shone on the teeth to activate the chemical. The light speeds up the chemical reaction of the whitening product and the shade change can be achieved more quickly. Laser whitening can make teeth up to five or six shades lighter. This treatment usually takes about one hour and you must be seen by a qualified dentist before starting treatment.

Why do I have a sudden toothache?2022-02-04T00:11:58+03:00

Toothache can strike at any time of the day or night, and the pain can become debilitating if not treated quickly. If the cause of the pain is related to the root canal this can make your pain worse at night, since blood pressure in the jaw increases when reclining.

Our Advice: Contact us straight away to arrange an immediate visit. Take painkillers (if required, as prescribed by your doctor). Try to remain in a sitting position.

How can I improve my smile?2022-02-06T19:30:38+03:00

An orthodontic appliance (‘brace’) will straighten or move your teeth to improve their appearance and the way they work. It can also help to improve the long-term health of your teeth, gums and jaw joints by spreading the biting pressure over all the teeth.

There are many different types of brace and your dental team or orthodontist will be able to talk to you about what is best for you.

Many people want to have whiter teeth. The only person who can whiten your teeth legally for you is a dentist, although there are ‘home whitening kits’ you can buy, you need to be over 18 to purchase these.

What else causes bad breath?2022-02-06T22:09:29+03:00

Bad breath can also be caused by some medical problems. ‘Dry mouth’ (xerostomia) is a condition that means your mouth produces less saliva. This causes bacteria to build up in your mouth and this leads to bad breath. Dry mouth may be caused by some medicines, by salivary gland problems or by continually breathing through your mouth instead of your nose. Older people may produce less saliva, causing further problems.

If you suffer from dry mouth, your dental team may be able to recommend or prescribe an artificial saliva product. Or they may be able to suggest other ways of dealing with the problem.

What are disclosing tablets and solutions?2022-02-06T21:08:29+03:00

These contain a dye. After brushing and cleaning in between your teeth, you can use a disclosing tablet or solution to dye any plaque that hasn’t been removed. This can help to show any places you are missing when brushing. You can easily remove the dye afterwards by brushing.

How are cracked teeth fixed?2022-02-06T22:37:37+03:00

The type of treatment depends on the amount of damage to the tooth. Ask your dental team what is the best treatment for you:

  • Bonding: This is when a plastic resin is used to fill the crack. It can easily repair a small chip off the biting edge of the tooth. Bonding can restore the shape of the tooth.
  • Cosmetic contouring: This is done when the chip is very small. The rough edges of the tooth are rounded and polished to blend away the crack.
  • Veneers: These are ideal when there is still a fair amount of tooth remaining, because they are long lasting and need the least amount of tooth removing first. A veneer is a thin layer of porcelain or plastic material made to fit over the front surface of the tooth. Click here for more information about veneers.
  • Crowns: These are used for a tooth that is not suitable for a veneer. A crown fits over what is left of the tooth, making it strong and giving it the appearance of a natural tooth. If the nerve has been damaged and becomes infected you may need to have root canal treatment first. This involves removing all infection from the root canal. The root is then cleaned and filled to prevent any further infections. The tooth would then be fitted with a crown to give it extra support.
What are tooth-coloured fillings made of?2022-02-06T18:56:54+03:00

This can vary, but they are mainly made of glass particles, synthetic resin and a setting ingredient. Your dental team should be able to give you more information about the particular material they use.

How will smoking affect my gums and teeth?2022-02-06T19:37:53+03:00

Smoking can also lead to gum disease. People who smoke are more likely to produce bacterial plaque, which leads to gum disease. The gums are affected because smoking causes a lack of oxygen in the bloodstream, so the infected gums don’t heal. Smoking causes people to have more dental plaque and causes gum disease to get worse more quickly than in non-smokers. Gum disease is still the most common cause of tooth loss in adults.

What is a removable brace?2022-02-06T20:42:08+03:00

Simple treatment may be carried out with a removable brace (a plate that can be taken out to be cleaned). It has delicate wires and springs attached, which move the teeth using gentle pressure.

What is gingivitis?2022-02-06T21:36:01+03:00

Gingivitis means ‘inflammation of the gums’. This is when the gums around the teeth become very red and swollen. Often the swollen gums bleed when they are brushed during cleaning.

What about mouthwashes?2022-02-06T19:38:48+03:00

People who smoke may find they are more likely to have bad breath than non-smokers. Fresh-breath products such as mouthwashes may help to disguise the problem in the short term, but will not cure it.

Can I go to sleep for treatment?2022-02-06T20:53:51+03:00

General anaesthetics are now only rarely available for routine treatment. If a general anaesthetic is needed, patients are referred to a hospital where the necessary safety equipment is available.

How can I tell someone they have bad breath?2022-02-06T22:12:02+03:00

We probably all know someone who has bad breath, but very few people feel brave enough to discuss the problem. It is obviously a very delicate matter to tell someone they have bad breath.

There is always the risk that they will be offended or embarrassed and may never speak to you again! However, it is always worth remembering that the bad breath may be caused by any number of problems. Once the person knows they have bad breath, they can deal with whatever is causing it.

You could try talking to their partner or a family member, as the bad breath may be caused by a medical condition which is already being treated.

You may like to leave a leaflet where the person is likely to see it.

Are there any alternatives to post crowns for root-filled teeth?2022-02-06T22:55:28+03:00

If a root-filled tooth is not completely broken down, it may be possible for your dentist to build it up again using filling material. This ‘core’ is then prepared in the same way as a natural tooth and the impressions are taken.

Why do we have wisdom teeth?2022-02-06T18:57:57+03:00

Adults can have up to 32 teeth. The wisdom teeth are the last to appear, right at the back of the mouth. They usually appear when you are between 17 and 25, although sometimes they appear many years later.

People often have jaws that are too small for all 32 teeth to fit – 28 is often the most we have room for. So if all the other teeth are present and healthy there may not be enough space for the wisdom teeth to come through properly.

Am I likely to suffer from gum disease?2022-02-06T21:36:36+03:00

Probably. Most people suffer from some form of gum disease, and it is a major cause of tooth loss in adults. However, the disease develops very slowly in most people, and it can be slowed down to a rate that should allow you to keep most of your teeth for life.

How is the crown fitted?2022-02-06T22:55:42+03:00

When you and your dentist are happy with the fit and appearance of the new crown, it will be fixed in place with special dental cement or adhesive. The cement forms a seal to hold the crown in place.

How should I clean my child’s teeth?2022-02-06T22:13:34+03:00

Cleaning your child’s teeth should be part of their daily hygiene routine. You may find it easier to stand or sit behind your child, cradling their chin in your hand so you can reach their top and bottom teeth more easily.

  • When the first teeth start to appear, try using a toothbrush designed for children, with a small smear of fluoride toothpaste.
  • It is important to supervise your child’s brushing until they are at least seven.
  • Once all the teeth have appeared, use a toothbrush with a small head and soft bristles in small, circular movements and try to concentrate on one section at a time.
  • Don’t forget to brush gently behind the teeth and onto the gums.
  • Spit out after brushing and do not rinse, so that the fluoride stays on your teeth longer.
    If possible, make brushing a routine – just before your child goes to bed and at least one other time during the day.
  • Remember to encourage your child, as praise will often get results!
Why is a healthy diet important for my oral health?2022-02-06T19:28:52+03:00

Every time you eat or drink anything sugary, your teeth are under acid attack for up to one hour. This is because the sugar reacts with the bacteria in plaque and produces harmful acids. Plaque is a build-up of bacteria which forms on your teeth.

It is better to have three or four meals a day rather than lots of snacks.

What is a veneer?2022-02-06T19:10:14+03:00

A veneer is a thin layer of porcelain made to fit over the front surface of a tooth, like a false fingernail fits over a nail. Sometimes a natural-colour ‘composite’ material is used instead of porcelain.

Can I have white fillings?2022-02-06T22:17:01+03:00

For over 150 years standard fillings have been made out of a silvery-grey material called ‘amalgam’. This is considered one of the strongest and longest-lasting materials for fillings. However, many people find it unattractive and some are concerned about possible health risks.

White fillings are now a popular alternative to amalgam fillings. The new dental materials mean it is much easier to find a perfect match for the shade of a particular tooth. In most cases, it is quite impossible to see that the tooth even has a filling. Sometimes white filling material can be used to cover unsightly marks on teeth, in a similar way to veneers.

As an LGBT person am I more at risk of problems with my teeth and gums?2022-02-06T23:06:32+03:00

Looking after your teeth and gums is important for everyone. As an LGBT patient there may be some specific health details that your dental team need to know about.

Data shows LGBT people are more likely to smoke than straight and cisgender people. If you do use tobacco you are more likely to have problems in your mouth. Gum disease and tooth loss are just some of the problems that can happen. Smoking and alcohol also increase the risk of mouth cancer – something your dentist will check for at every examination.

Other personal issues like mental health, substance use and eating disorders can also affect your oral health.

LGBT people are also affected by higher rates of HIV and hepatitis. HIV can lower the body’s ability to fight infection, and the side effects of some HIV medications can cause problems in the mouth.

Some transgender people may take hormones they have bought online, and some HRT medication can cause oral health problems. Because of this, it is important that trans patients feel able to discuss any possible oral health issues with their dentist.

Sometimes LGBT people experience unique stresses, and these can contribute to poor mental health. Poor mental health can also have a knock-on effect for oral health. People who suffer from anxiety or depression are less likely to keep to a daily oral health routine and are less likely to visit a dental practice regularly. This can lead to oral health problems.

Why am I afraid of the dentist?2022-02-06T20:51:22+03:00

Being ‘afraid of the dentist’ may mean different things to different people. It will probably help if you work out just what it is that worries you most. Maybe the sounds and smells bring back memories of bad experiences as a child, or make you think that having treatment will hurt. The good news is that more and more dentists now understand their patients’ fears. They realise that kindness and gentleness can do a lot to make dental treatment an acceptable, normal part of life.

What is the best time of day to visit the dentist?2022-02-06T20:53:36+03:00

Book appointments at a time of day when you feel at your best, and when you do not have any other commitments to worry about. Allow plenty of time so that you can get to the practice in a relaxed frame of mind – arriving in a rush will only make you feel more nervous. It is usually best to have something to eat before you go, so there is no chance of you feeling faint while you are in the chair.

What effects will smoking, alcohol or taking drugs have on my oral health?2022-02-06T19:30:10+03:00

Smoking can cause tooth staining, gum disease, tooth loss and – more seriously – mouth cancer. Smoking is also one of the main causes of bad breath.

Alcoholic drinks can also cause mouth cancer. If you smoke and drink you are more at risk.

Alcohol can also increase the risk of tooth decay and erosion. Some alcoholic drinks have a lot of sugar in them, and some mixed drinks may contain acids. So they can cause decay or dental erosion if you drink them often and in large amounts.

Illegal drugs can lead to a range of health problems. Smoking cannabis can have the same effects as smoking tobacco. Other drugs can cause a dry mouth and increase the risk of erosion, decay, gum disease and bad breath. Drugs can also cause you to grind your teeth, which can cause headaches and other problems. Many drugs can cause a craving for sugar, such as sweets and fizzy drinks, which can case tooth decay.

The human papillomavirus (HPV) is the main cause of cervical cancer and affects the skin that lines the moist areas of the body (such as the mouth). It can be spread through oral sex. Practising safe sex and limiting the number of partners you have may help reduce your chances of getting HPV.

You may hear about teenage girls being offered the HPV vaccine to help prevent the virus. Talk to someone at your medical practice, or your parents or guardians, if you want to know more about this.

Your dentist may ask you questions about your lifestyle choices and general health because these may affect the health of your mouth.

What happens if gum disease is not treated?2022-02-06T21:37:53+03:00

Unfortunately, gum disease does not usually cause pain as it gets worse so you do not notice the damage it is doing. However, the bacteria are sometimes more active and this makes your gums sore. This can lead to gum abscesses, and pus may ooze from around the teeth. Over a number of years, the bone supporting the teeth can be lost. If the disease is left untreated for a long time, treatment can be more difficult.

What is orthodontic treatment?2022-02-06T20:40:14+03:00

Orthodontic treatment is a way of straightening or moving teeth, to improve the appearance of the teeth and how they work. It can also help to look after the long-term health of your teeth, gums and jaw joints, by spreading the biting pressure over all your teeth.

How often should I have x-rays?2022-02-06T18:57:16+03:00

If you are a new patient, unless you have had dental x-rays very recently, the dental team will probably suggest having x-rays. This helps them assess the condition of your mouth and to check for any hidden problems. After that, x-rays may be recommended every 6 to 24 months depending on the person, their history of decay, their age and the condition of their mouth.

Does it hurt to have a tooth prepared for a crown?2022-02-06T22:56:15+03:00

No. You will have a local anaesthetic and the preparation work should feel no different from a filling. If the tooth does not have a nerve, and a post crown is being prepared, then you may not need a local anaesthetic.

How do I choose a dentist?2022-02-06T20:51:56+03:00

Many dentists today offer special treatment for nervous patients. The first fear to deal with is the fear of telling other people that you are afraid of dental treatment. If you can discuss it with your friends or colleagues you are likely to find someone else who has similar problems. They may be able to recommend a dentist to you. A dentist who is personally recommended by another nervous person is usually a very good choice.

Why is root canal treatment needed?2022-02-06T19:46:10+03:00

If the pulp becomes infected, the infection may spread through the root canal system of the tooth. This may eventually lead to an abscess. An abscess is an inflamed area in which pus collects and can cause swelling of the tissues around the tooth. The symptoms of an abscess can range from a dull ache to severe pain, and the tooth may be tender when you bite. If root canal treatment is not done, the infection will spread and the tooth may need to be taken out.

What if I need dental x-rays?2022-02-06T23:00:46+03:00

Usually, dentists prefer to avoid dental x-rays during pregnancy if possible. However, if you need root canal treatment you may need to have an x-ray.

How long will the crown last?2022-02-06T22:58:56+03:00

How long your crown lasts depends on how well you look after it. Properly cared for crowns should last for many years. Your dental team will be able to tell you how long your crown may be expected to last.

What could cause my child to have toothache?2022-02-06T22:14:25+03:00

Toothache is painful and upsetting, especially in children, and the main cause is tooth decay. This is due to too much sugar, too often, in the diet.

Teething is another problem. It starts at around 6 months, and it can continue when the adult teeth start to appear. If your child needs pain relief, make sure you choose a sugar-free medicine. If the pain continues then contact your dental team for an appointment. Remember to check with your doctor or pharmacist that you are being prescribed sugar-free medicines at all times.

Once I have had periodontal disease, can I get it again?2022-02-06T22:07:19+03:00

There is no cure for periodontal disease, but it can be controlled as long as you keep up the home care you have been taught. Any further loss of bone will be very slow and it may stop altogether. However, you must make sure you remove plaque every day, and go for regular check-ups by the dental team.

Do I have an implant for each missing tooth?2022-02-06T21:26:07+03:00

If you have a single tooth missing, you will need an implant to support it. If you have a number of teeth missing, and these are next to each other, you could still have one implant for each tooth. Or you may find that, if you have two or more implants, they may be able to support more than one tooth each. Your dentist will talk to you about the best option for you.

Can orthodontics damage my teeth?2022-02-06T20:44:01+03:00

Your teeth can be damaged if you don’t look after them properly during treatment. The braces themselves will not cause damage, but poor cleaning and too many sugary foods and drinks can cause permanent damage to your teeth. Brackets, wires and braces can trap food and cause more plaque than usual to build up. So you need to clean your teeth and appliance very thoroughly.

Can I ask the dental team to stop if I need to?2022-02-06T20:54:15+03:00

Before the treatment is started, agree with your dental team a sign that means ‘stop now – I need a break’. Usually you can just raise your hand, and the treatment can be stopped for a few minutes until you are ready to start again. Once you know that you can control the situation you will feel more confident.

Are white fillings as good as silver amalgam fillings?2022-02-06T18:56:54+03:00

White fillings have always been considered less long-lasting than silver amalgam fillings. But there are now new materials available that are comparable to silver amalgam, and these are proving to be very successful. The life expectancy of a white filling can depend greatly on where it is in your mouth and how heavily your teeth come together when you bite. Your dental team can advise you on how long your fillings should last.

What can happen if it is not treated?2022-02-06T22:33:02+03:00

If an incorrect bite is not treated the face can ‘collapse’. This can cause the face to sag, the chin to stick out or the smile to droop. It can even cause headaches, neck pain and pain in other parts of the body.

What is a post crown?2022-02-06T22:55:12+03:00

In root-filled teeth it may be necessary to insert a post into the tooth root before placing a crown. A post gives support and helps the crown to stay in place. The surface of the tooth may be removed down to the level of the gum.

A post can be made of prefabricated stainless steel which the dentist can fit directly into the root canal. Or a custom-made post can be constructed by a dental technician to accurately fit the shape of the prepared root canal. The post is placed into the root canal and cemented in position, ready for the crown to be attached.

Does my dentist need to know if I am lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender?2022-02-06T23:05:48+03:00

It is entirely up to you if you choose to tell your dentist about your sexual orientation, gender identity or trans status. However, it may be help your dentist if they are aware of your identity as many LGBT patients have health needs that non-LGBT patients don’t have. So if you do give your dental team more details about yourself, it may help them to treat you more effectively.

Telling your team about yourself will mean they are less likely to make assumptions about the gender of your partner or ask inappropriate questions about your life. It may also make you feel more confident that you are receiving the best care and the most appropriate treatment for you.

It is also helpful if the dental team know about any concerns or anxieties you may have, so that they can help you to feel at ease.

Can implants always be used to replace missing teeth?2022-02-06T21:23:27+03:00

It depends on the condition of the bone in your jaw. Your dentist will arrange for a number of special tests to find out the amount of bone still there. If there is not enough, or if it isn’t healthy enough, it may not be possible to place implants without grafting bone into the area first.

How can I tell if I have a cracked tooth?2022-02-06T22:36:01+03:00

The signs can be difficult to spot and the symptoms will vary. You may get pain from time to time when you are chewing, especially when you release the biting pressure. Extreme temperatures, especially cold, may cause discomfort. Or you may be sensitive to sweetness, but with no signs of decay. A small area of the gum near the affected tooth may swell.

If the pain is severe, take pain relief like you would normally take for a headache. Always check with your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking any other medication.

What are the advantages of veneers?2022-02-06T19:10:57+03:00

Veneers make teeth look natural and healthy. Because they are very thin and are held in place by a special, strong adhesive, very little preparation of the tooth is needed. Some types of veneers don’t need any preparation at all.

How often should I clean my teeth?2022-02-06T21:04:30+03:00

It is important that you brush last thing at night and at least one other time during the day, with a toothpaste containing fluoride.

Eating and drinking foods containing sugar and acids naturally weakens the enamel on your teeth. Brushing straight afterwards can cause tiny particles of enamel to be brushed away. It is best not to brush your teeth until at least one hour after eating.

It is especially important to brush before bed. This is because the flow of saliva, which is the mouth’s own cleaning system, slows down during the night and this leaves the mouth more at risk from tooth decay.

It is important to clean your teeth for two minutes, twice a day especially last thing at night and at least one other time during the day. Usually two minutes is enough to remove plaque and to clean properly. Some people find using a stop-watch or timer useful as two minutes is often longer than you think. If you eat or drink certain sugary or acidic foods you may need to clean more often.

Who do the x-rays belong to?2022-02-06T18:57:16+03:00

X-rays are an essential part of your health records. If you are entitled to copies of your records, you may have to pay for these copies. If you change dentists, your x-rays and records will not usually be needed by your new dentist. However, if they are important, your new dental team will let you know. They will either ask for your permission to send for them, or ask you to fetch them yourself.

Can I take the teeth out if they are fixed to implants?2022-02-06T21:25:28+03:00

Most teeth attached to implants can only be fitted and removed by the dentist. However, if you have removable dentures attached to the implants, you’ll be able to take them out for cleaning.

What is root canal treatment?2022-02-06T19:45:46+03:00

Root canal treatment (also called ‘endodontics’) is needed when the blood or nerve supply of the tooth (called the ‘pulp’) is infected through decay or injury. You may not feel any pain in the early stages of the infection. In some cases your tooth could darken in colour, which may mean that the nerve of the tooth has died (or is dying). This would need root canal treatment

Will the tooth be safe after treatment?2022-02-06T19:55:52+03:00

Yes. However, because a ‘dead’ tooth is more brittle, you may need to have a crown to provide extra support and strength to the tooth.

What is a functional brace?2022-02-06T20:42:42+03:00

It is sometimes possible to change the way the jaws grow, using a functional brace. This works by using the power of your jaw muscles and can help with certain types of problem.

What can I do to prevent dental erosion?2022-02-06T23:05:24+03:00

There are a number of things you can do:

  • Have acidic food and drinks, and fizzy drinks, sodas and pops, just at mealtimes. This will reduce the number of acid attacks on your teeth.
  • Drink quickly, without holding the drink in your mouth or ‘swishing’ it around your mouth. Or use a straw to help drinks go to the back of your mouth and avoid long contact with your teeth.
  • Finish a meal with cheese or milk as this will help cancel out the acid.
  • Chew sugar-free gum after eating. This will help produce more saliva to help cancel out the acids which form in your mouth after eating.
  • Wait for at least one hour after eating or drinking anything acidic before brushing your teeth. This gives your teeth time to build up their mineral content again.
  • Brush your teeth last thing at night and at least one other time during the day, with fluoride toothpaste. Use a small-headed brush with medium to soft bristles.
  • Children up to three years old should use a toothpaste with a fluoride level of at least 1000ppm (parts per million). Three-year-olds to adults should use a toothpaste that contains 1350ppm to 1500ppm.
  • Spit out after brushing and do not rinse, so that the fluoride stays on your teeth longer.
What is the cause of gum disease?2022-02-06T21:36:56+03:00

All gum disease is caused by plaque. Plaque is a film of bacteria which forms on the surface of the teeth every day. Many of the bacteria in plaque are completely harmless, but there are some that have been shown to be the main cause of gum disease.

To prevent and treat gum disease, you need to make sure you remove all the plaque from your teeth every day. This is done by brushing and cleaning in between the teeth with ‘interdental’ brushes or floss.

See our advice on ‘caring for my teeth and gums’ for how to do this.

What is a fixed brace?2022-02-06T20:42:25+03:00

Often, teeth need to be guided more accurately than they can be using a removable brace. So a fixed brace is used. This has brackets and bands which are temporarily stuck to the teeth. A flexible wire joins all the brackets and allows the teeth to be moved. You can’t take the appliance out yourself, so it is called a fixed appliance.

Why are my gums bleeding?2022-02-06T23:00:08+03:00

You may notice that your gums become sore and swollen during pregnancy, and they may bleed. This is due to hormone changes in your body. This means that you must keep your teeth and gums clean and visit your dentist regularly. You may also need appointments with the dental team for thorough cleaning and to help keep plaque and tartar from building up, and for advice on caring for your teeth at home.

What products could I use to help get rid of bad breath?2022-02-06T21:08:55+03:00

Good brushing, and cleaning in between the teeth, is the most important way of controlling bad breath. In the short term you can use mouth rinses, sugar-free gum and sugar-free mints. Many of the bacteria causing bad breath live on your tongue, so brushing your tongue or using a tongue scraper will also help.

What treatments are needed?2022-02-06T21:38:46+03:00

Your dental team will remove all plaque and tartar from your teeth. You will also be shown how to remove plaque successfully yourself, cleaning all the surfaces of your teeth thoroughly and effectively. This may take a number of sessions with the dental team. A good oral care routine at home with brushing and interdental cleaning is the most important thing you can do to help prevent gum disease getting worse.

What is a crown?2022-02-06T22:39:41+03:00

A crown is an artificial restoration that fits over the remaining part of a prepared tooth, making it strong and giving it the shape of a natural tooth. A crown is sometimes known as a ‘cap’.

Last minute dental hassle2022-02-06T18:30:00+03:00

Dental problems can occur when it’s least convenient. When you’re on the way to the airport to catch a flight. On your way to a wedding celebration or family event. Travelling to an important business meeting. In these circumstances a broken crown, loosened bridge, lost filling or damaged tooth can be more than just an inconvenience. Call in to our clinic at any time of the day or night for immediate first-class dental treatment.

At 24 Hours Dental Clinic we offer the best treatment and superb patient care for any dental issue or emergency. We’re ready to help you so you don’t need to reschedule your priorities.

How are teeth prepared for a veneer?2022-02-06T19:11:15+03:00

Some of the shiny, outer enamel surface of the tooth may be removed, to make sure that the veneer can be bonded permanently in place later. The amount of enamel removed is tiny and will be the same as the thickness of the veneer to be fitted, so that the tooth stays the same size.

A local anaesthetic (injection) may be used to make sure that there is no discomfort, but often this is not needed. Once the tooth has been prepared, the dental team will take an ‘impression’ (mould). This will be given to the dental technician, along with any other information needed to make the veneer.

The colour of the surrounding teeth is matched on a shade guide to make sure that the veneer will look entirely natural.

What are gold inlays and onlays?2022-02-06T23:09:05+03:00

These can be used in most areas of the mouth. An inlay is small and placed within the biting surface of the tooth. An onlay can cover a larger area of the tooth. Gold is the most long-lasting and hard-wearing filling material and will last for many years. An advantage of gold is that it does not tarnish and has great strength.

One of the differences between gold and other filling materials is that the gold filling is made in a laboratory. Your dental team will usually take an impression of the prepared cavity and send it to the laboratory for the technician to make the inlay or onlay. In the meantime, a temporary filling will be placed in the cavity. After the gold inlay or onlay has been made, your dentist will fix it in place with dental cement. This type of filling is more expensive.

What is cosmetic dentistry?2022-02-06T22:15:42+03:00

Dentistry is no longer just a case of filling and taking out teeth. Nowadays many people turn to cosmetic dentistry, or ‘aesthetic dentistry’, as a way of improving their appearance. They do this in the same way they might use cosmetic surgery or even a new hairstyle. The treatments can be used to straighten, lighten, reshape and repair teeth.

Cosmetic treatments include veneers, crowns, bridges, tooth-coloured fillings, implants and tooth whitening.

Are x-rays needed for wisdom teeth?2022-02-06T18:59:55+03:00

The dental team will usually take x-rays to see the position of the root, and to decide whether there is room for the tooth to come through into a useful position.

What do I do if I think I have gum disease?2022-02-06T21:38:16+03:00

The first thing to do is visit your dental team for a thorough check-up of your teeth and gums. They will measure the ‘cuff’ of gum around each tooth to see if there is any sign that periodontal disease has started. X-rays may also be needed to see the amount of bone that has been lost. This assessment is very important, so the correct treatment can be prescribed for you.

What does tooth whitening involve?2022-02-06T22:31:32+03:00

Professional bleaching is the most common form of tooth whitening.

Your dental team will apply the whitening product to your teeth, using a specially made tray which fits into your mouth like a mouthguard.

The ‘active ingredient’ in the product is usually hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. As the active ingredient is broken down, oxygen gets into the enamel on the teeth and the tooth colour is made lighter.

Once your dental team has started this treatment you may be given the trays to take home and continue the treatment, or you may need more appointments with the team. This treatment can take around 3 to 4 weeks, depending on how long you keep the trays in your mouth each time, and how much whiter you want your teeth to be.

It is important to remember that only natural teeth will be whitened, and that any crowns, bridges or dentures you have will stay the same shade.

Can my crooked or twisted teeth be straightened?2022-02-06T22:32:27+03:00

Teeth can be straightened with orthodontics (braces). This is usually done during the teenage years, when the jaws are going through a period of growth. However, many adults also have treatment to straighten their crooked teeth or to improve their appearance. The treatment can take much longer in adults and is therefore more expensive.

Some people have clear or plastic braces, which are hardly noticeable. If you are considering orthodontic treatment, first see your dental team and get their advice. Your dental team can talk to you about your treatment options and if necessary refer you to an orthodontist, a dentist who specialises in straightening teeth.

There are also now ‘invisible’ braces. Your dentist will make you a series of clear plastic shields (like a mouthguard) which need to be worn all day and gradually move your teeth into a new position.

How long do custom-made mouthguards last?2022-02-06T20:49:14+03:00

Depending on your age, your mouthguard may need replacing fairly regularly. If you are still growing, new teeth will come through and move into position. So the mouthguard may become too tight or loose, and will need to be remade to fit the new shape of your mouth.

Adults may not need to have their mouthguards replaced quite so often. But they are like any other form of sports equipment and will suffer from wear and tear. It is recommended that you take your mouthguard along to the dentist when you go for your check-up, so it can be checked.

Why might I have a veneer?2022-02-06T22:16:21+03:00

Veneers are an ideal way of treating discoloured or unsightly teeth, closing gaps between front teeth, or repairing chips and cracks.

Will the crown feel different?2022-02-06T22:56:46+03:00

Because the shape of the crown will be slightly different from the shape of your tooth before it was crowned, you may be aware of it at first. Within a few days it should feel fine, and you will not notice it. The crown may need some adjustment if your bite does not feel comfortable, and if this is the case, you should ask your dentist to check and adjust it.

Where can I get more information?2022-02-06T23:09:44+03:00

Your dental team will advise you on what kind of filling material is suited to your situation. Talk to them if you would like a particular type of filling material such as tooth-coloured fillings.

Always ask for a treatment plan and a written estimate before starting any treatment.

What should I expect after a wisdom tooth is taken out?2022-02-06T19:01:19+03:00

The amount of discomfort will depend on how easy it was to remove the tooth. There is usually some swelling and discomfort for a few days afterwards, and it is important to follow any advice you get about mouthwashes and so on, to help with the healing. Normal painkillers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen will usually deal with any pain. It is best to stay fairly quiet and relaxed and avoid smoking and drinking alcohol for 24 hours afterwards to make sure there are no bleeding problems. There may be some stitches to help the gum heal over. Your dentist will probably want to see you again about a week later to check how your mouth is healing, and to remove any stitches.

Top tips for teens2022-02-06T19:33:10+03:00
  • Brush your teeth last thing at night and at least one other time during the day. Use a toothbrush with a small- to medium-sized brush head with soft to medium bristles, and brush for two minutes.
  • You should use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste that contains 1350ppm to 1500ppm fluoride.
  • Have sugary food and drinks just at mealtimes.
  • Visit your dental team at least once a year, or as often as they recommend.
  • Clean in between your teeth with ‘interdental’ brushes or floss at least once a day, to help remove plaque and food from between your teeth.
  • Use a mouthwash to freshen your breath and kill bacteria.
  • Use a straw if you have fizzy drinks, as this helps the drink to go to the back of your mouth and reduces the number of acid attacks on your teeth.
  • Wait for at least one hour after eating or drinking anything acidic before you brush your teeth.
  • Chew sugar-free gum after eating to help make more saliva and cancel out the acids which form in your mouth after eating.
Are the implant teeth difficult to clean?2022-02-06T21:24:42+03:00

No. But aftercare is important if you are going to have a long-lasting, successful implant. Your dental team should give you detailed advice on how to look after your implants. Cleaning around the teeth attached to the implants is no more difficult than cleaning natural teeth. However, there may be areas that are difficult to reach and you’ll be shown how to clean them. You may need to visit your hygienist more often but your dental team will be able to talk to you about this.

What problems should I be prepared for?2022-02-06T18:59:01+03:00

If part of the wisdom tooth has appeared through the gum and part of it is still covered, the gum may become sore and perhaps swollen. This is called ‘pericoronitis’. Bacteria and bits of food can collect under the gum edge, and it will be difficult to clean the area properly.

This is a temporary problem that can be dealt with by using mouthwashes, special cleaning methods and possibly antibiotics. If the problem keeps coming back, it may be better to have the tooth removed.

Does root canal treatment hurt?2022-02-06T19:46:27+03:00

No. Usually, a local anaesthetic is used and it should feel no different to having an ordinary filling done. There may be some tenderness afterwards but this should gradually get less over time.

Will I need to have teeth taken out to make room?2022-02-06T20:41:33+03:00

You may not have enough room for all your permanent teeth. If so, you may need to have some permanent teeth taken out to make space. Your dental team will tell you whether this is the case. Sometimes space can be made using other forms of treatment.

Can a dental hygienist do anything else?2022-02-06T19:08:05+03:00

Dental hygienists also take  dental x-rays. The dentist will use these to help diagnose problems and decide on the possible treatment. Dental hygienists can also place fissure sealants, apply fluoride varnishes and administer fluoride treatments. Other procedures may be carried out by dental hygienists depending on the laws that apply where they work.

Tooth whitening is also often carried out by the dental hygienist, under a prescription from your dentist.

What happens after the veneer is fitted?2022-02-06T19:27:37+03:00

Only minor adjustments can be made to the veneer after it is fitted. It is usually best to wait a little while to get used to it before any changes are made. Your dental team will probably want to check and polish it a week or so after it is fitted, and make sure that you are happy with it.

Can other medical conditions cause bad breath?2022-02-06T22:09:49+03:00

Other medical conditions that cause bad breath include infections in the throat, nose or lungs; sinusitis; bronchitis; diabetes; or liver or kidney problems. If your dentist finds that your mouth is healthy, you may be referred to your family GP or a specialist to find out the cause of your bad breath.

Are there any alternatives to fillings?2022-02-06T18:56:54+03:00

‘Adhesive dentistry’ involves bonding the filling to the tooth. The dental team have to remove less of the tooth, which is obviously better.

As we have already said, there are alternatives such as crowns and inlays, although they can cost a lot more. Veneers can be used on front teeth instead of crowns or fillings.

Why should I have orthodontic treatment?2022-02-06T20:40:33+03:00

Many people have crowded or crooked teeth. Orthodontic treatment will straighten the teeth or move them into a better position. This can improve their appearance and the way the teeth bite together, while also making them easier to clean.

Some people have upper front teeth that stick out and look unsightly. These ‘prominent’ teeth are more likely to be damaged, but orthodontic treatment can move them back into line. Or the way the upper and lower jaws meet can cause teeth to look unsightly and lead to an incorrect bite. Orthodontic treatment may be able to correct both of these problems.

When the teeth don’t meet correctly, this can put strain on the muscles of the jaw, causing jaw and joint problems and sometimes headaches. Orthodontic treatment can help you to bite more evenly and reduce the strain.

Are wisdom teeth difficult to take out?2022-02-06T19:00:53+03:00

It all depends on the position and the shape of the roots. Your dentist will tell you how easy or difficult each tooth will be to remove after looking at the x-rays. Upper wisdom teeth are often easier to remove than lower ones, which are more likely to be impacted. Your dentist will say whether the tooth should be taken out at the dental practice, or whether you should be referred to a specialist oral surgeon at a hospital. Very occasionally there is a possibility of some numbness of the lip after the removal of a lower tooth. Your dentist will tell you if it is possible in your case.

Either a local anaesthetic – like you would have for a filling – or sedation will probably be recommended. A general anaesthetic – where you would be asleep – can also be used, but this will only be given in a hospital.

What happens if the implant does not fuse with the bone?2022-02-06T21:26:27+03:00

This happens very rarely. If the implant becomes loose during the healing period, or just after, it is easily removed and your jaw will heal in the normal way. Once your jaw has healed, another implant can be placed there. Or the dentist can make a bridge, fitting it to the implanted false teeth that have been successful.

How can I make sure that my mouth stays healthy?2022-02-06T20:47:44+03:00

Stop smoking, and cut down on the amount of alcohol you drink.

Eat a balanced, healthy diet with at least five portions of fruit and vegetables a day. This can also help protect against many other cancers.

Visit your dental team regularly, as often as they recommend.

Are there any alternatives to orthodontics?2022-02-06T22:32:11+03:00

Cosmetic contouring can be used to improve the appearance of teeth. It is ideal if you have irregular-shaped or slightly crowded teeth.

However, in contouring the teeth a small amount of enamel would be lost. Contouring can also be used to improve the shape and appearance of your gums. These treatments are not recommended for young children.

Can implants be used to replace missing teeth?2022-02-06T22:30:53+03:00

Implants are an alternative to dentures and bridges, but they are more expensive. Implants are titanium rods which are surgically placed into the jawbone and act as anchors for fastening dentures or crowns onto.

How long does the implant treatment take?2022-02-06T21:24:22+03:00

Your dental team will be able to give you a rough timetable before the treatment starts.

Some false teeth can now even be fitted at the same time as the implants (these are called ‘immediate implants’). Check with your dental team to see whether these are suitable for you. Usually the false teeth are fitted 3 to 4 months after the implants are put in. Sometimes treatment takes longer and your dental team will be able to talk to you about your treatment time.

Should I use a mouthwash?2022-02-06T21:08:09+03:00

Many people use a mouthwash as part of their daily oral health routine. Some mouthwashes contain an anti-bacterial ingredient to help reduce plaque and prevent gum disease. Mouthwashes may contain fluoride to help prevent decay, and all will help to freshen your breath and wash away bits of food.

Anesthesia and Sedation2022-02-06T18:35:30+03:00

Several medications are available to help create more relaxed, comfortable dental visits. Some drugs control pain, some help you relax, and others put you into a deep sleep-like state during dental treatment. You and your dentist can discuss a number of factors when deciding which drugs to use for your treatment. The type of procedure, your overall health, history of allergies and your anxiety level are considered when determining which approach is best for your particular case.

Your dentist might recommend that your child be given anesthesia or sedation to relax them in order to safely complete some dental procedures. Here are some questions to ask your dentist before your child undergoes any type of anesthesia.

Local anesthesia is a type of medication used to prevent pain in a specific area of your mouth during treatment by blocking the nerves that sense or transmit pain, which numbs mouth tissues. Your dentist may apply a topical anesthetic to numb an area before injecting a local anesthetic. Topical anesthetics also may be used to soothe painful mouth sores. Injectable anesthetics may be used in such procedures as filling cavities, preparing teeth for crowns or treating gum disease.

Depending on the procedure, you may need a pain reliever after treatment. Medicines used to relieve pain can be broken into two groups: non-narcotic and narcotic. Non-narcotic are the most commonly used drugs for relief of toothache or pain following dental treatment. They include acetaminophen and non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen and asprin. Narcotic analgesics, such as opioids, act on receptors in the brain to relieve pain.

Be sure to talk with your dentist about how to properly secure and dispose of any unused, unwanted or expired medications. Also, take the time to talk with your children about the dangers of using prescription drugs for non-medical purposes.

For some dental visits, your dentist may use a sedative. Sedatives can be administered before or during dental procedures. Sedation may involve gases that ar inhaled, pills that ar taken or medicine which is injected. More complex treatments may require deeper sedation to relieve both pain and anxiety. On occasion, general anesthesia may be used to cause a temporary loss of consciousness.

Dentists treat millions of patients, including managing their pain and anxiety, safely every year. The ADA urges you to take an active role in your oral health care. This means understanding the risks and benefits involved in dental treatment, so that you and your dentist can make the best decisions about the treatment that is right for you. Working together, you and your dentist can choose the appropriate steps to make your dental visit as safe and comfortable as possible, and to help you keep a healthy smile.

What else can I do to help me relax during treatment?2022-02-06T20:54:51+03:00

Thinking hard about something other than the treatment is a good distraction. Try to solve a puzzle in your mind, or perhaps work out a plan for each day of next year’s holiday. Or give yourself something tricky to do – try to wiggle each toe in turn, without moving any of the others.

How could a probiotic help my oral health?2022-02-06T21:09:45+03:00

Probiotics are ‘friendly’ bacteria and have been commonly used to help healthy digestion.

There are now ‘oral’ probiotics which may help to keep up the balance between the friendly bacteria in your mouth and the harmful bacteria which can cause plaque build-up, gum disease and bad breath.

Who carries out orthodontics?2022-02-06T20:41:10+03:00

Your dentist may carry out orthodontic treatment. Or they may send you to a specialist who has extra qualifications. The specialist may be in a practice or in a hospital department, and is called an orthodontist.

Do some practices specialise in treating nervous patients?2022-02-06T20:52:12+03:00

Yes. This means that they should be used to dealing with nervous patients regularly.

If you are nervous about dental treatment, you need to be looked after by a dental practice that will take special care of you. You may need to travel some distance, but it will be worth the effort when you are no longer afraid.

How do I choose a dentist that is right for me?2022-02-06T23:07:04+03:00

It is important that you feel comfortable with the person who is treating you. To put your mind at ease, it is a good idea to ask your dental practice questions about their awareness of LGBT patients’ needs. At first you can do this by telephone and you won’t have to give any details that you don’t feel happy giving.

You can use this as an opportunity to discuss any health conditions you may have. This will allow the dental team to share their knowledge and tell you how they can help you.

When you’re choosing the right practice to visit, it is important to feel confident that the dentist understands your needs.

Whatever dentist you choose, you can be sure:

  • You are in a safe place where, if you choose, you can disclose information about your trans status, gender history and sexual orientation.
  • No-one there will make assumptions about you simply because you are LGBT.
  • Information about you will be treated confidentially and you will not lose control over what other people know about you.
  • You will be treated with respect and without discrimination or judgement.
What will happen at the first appointment?2022-02-06T20:52:47+03:00

Your first appointment should just be for a consultation. See it as an opportunity for you to ‘interview’ the dentist, receptionist and other members of the team, and have a chat about what to expect next. The dentist may check your teeth with a mirror and probe and may take x-rays before developing a treatment plan.

Does pregnancy cause damage to teeth?2022-02-06T23:01:07+03:00

No. It is not true that pregnancy causes tooth problems through a lack of calcium, or that you will lose one tooth for each child you have.

How long does the treatment take?2022-02-06T22:56:02+03:00

You will need to have at least two visits. At the first visit, your dental team will prepare the tooth, take the impressions, make a note of the shade of your tooth, and fit the temporary crown. At the second visit, your dentist will fit the permanent crown. There will usually be about 1 to 2 weeks between appointments.

What techniques can the practice use to help me?2022-02-06T20:55:08+03:00

This will depend on which techniques the practice is experienced in, and which you feel would help you most. Many practices offer several types of sedation, including inhalation (‘gas and air’) and intravenous (an injection). Other practices offer hypnosis and relaxation techniques. You would learn these techniques yourself, which would allow you to gain control over your feelings of distress or fear. You can also learn relaxation techniques from specialist teachers or at home. They can be very useful in controlling anxiety (see our information about ‘relaxation and sedation’).

Counselling is another way of dealing with feelings of anxiety. This is usually carried out by a member of the practice team, in a room away from the surgery. You would be encouraged to discuss your fears so that you can deal with them and overcome them.

Can I lighten the colour of my teeth?2022-02-06T22:31:15+03:00

Yes. Tooth whitening can be a highly effective way of lightening the natural colour of your teeth without removing any of the tooth surfaces. It cannot make a complete colour change, but it should lighten the existing shade.

What types of x-rays are there?2022-02-06T18:57:16+03:00

There are various types of x-ray. Some show one or two teeth and their roots, while others can take pictures of several teeth at once. The most common x-rays are small ones, which are taken regularly to keep a check on the condition of the teeth and gums.

These show a few teeth at a time, but include the roots and surrounding areas. There are large x-rays that show the whole mouth, including all the teeth and the bone structure that supports the teeth. These are called panoramic x-rays.

There are also medium-sized x-rays, which show either one jaw at a time, or one side of the face. There are also electronic ‘imaging’ systems in use today. These use electronic probes instead of x-ray films and the picture is transmitted directly onto a screen.

Where can I get white fillings done?2022-02-06T18:56:54+03:00

Most dental practices offer white fillings as a normal part of the treatment they give you.

Are there special dental products I can use?2022-02-06T19:38:29+03:00

There are special toothpastes for people who smoke. They are sometimes a little more abrasive than ordinary toothpastes and you should use them with care. Your dental team may recommend that you use these toothpastes alternately with your usual toothpaste. There are several ‘whitening’ toothpastes on the market. Although they do not affect the natural colour of your teeth, they may be effective at removing staining, and therefore may improve the overall appearance of your teeth.

Why don’t cracks show up on a dental x-ray?2022-02-06T22:36:17+03:00

Unfortunately, dental x-rays sometimes don’t show up the cracked tooth. This is because the x-ray beam must be parallel to the crack before it can penetrate it.

However, sometimes other signs of a crack may show up. With a vertical root fracture, if the crack has been there long enough, vertical bone loss near to the root can be seen. Your dentist may use a bright light or a magnifying glass to find the crack. They may also use a special dye to follow the course of the crack.

What is an ‘incorrect bite’?2022-02-06T22:33:17+03:00

This is when the teeth do not meet together properly or are not in balance with the rest of the face, or if teeth are lost and not replaced.

Who can be affected by mouth cancer?2022-02-06T20:45:28+03:00

Anyone can be affected by mouth cancer, whether they have their own teeth or not. Mouth cancers are more common in people over 40, particularly men. However, research has shown that mouth cancer is becoming more common in younger patients and in women. There are more than 640,000 cases of mouth cancer diagnosed each year worldwide and it is the eleventh most common cancer. In the United States there are around 43,000 cases each year.

In some countries there is an increased risk because of problems such as tobacco chewing – in India, for example – and the rates are even higher. There are, on average, almost 7,800 new cases of mouth cancer diagnosed in the UK each year. The number of new cases of mouth cancer is on the increase, and in the UK has increased by over half in the last decade alone.

How is smoking linked with cancer?2022-02-06T19:38:12+03:00

Most people know that smoking can cause lung and throat cancer, but many people still don’t know that it is one of the main causes of mouth cancer too. Every year thousands of people die from mouth cancer brought on by smoking.

What if my baby damages a tooth?2022-02-06T23:02:12+03:00

If your child damages a tooth, contact your dental team straight away. A damaged tooth will often discolour over time.

If the damage happens outside normal opening hours, your dental team will have emergency cover. Phone the surgery anyway to find out who to call.

What are ‘total care’ toothpastes?2022-02-06T21:07:30+03:00

Total care toothpastes contain a number of ingredients to make them an effective ‘all-round’ toothpaste. They contain anti-bacterial agents, ingredients which help control plaque and prevent gum disease, fluoride to help prevent tooth decay and flavours which help to freshen the breath. They may also contain whitening or tartar-control ingredients.

Does every practice have a hygienist?2022-02-06T19:08:26+03:00

Not all practices have a hygienist or therapist. However, more of them now offer this as part of the service to patients. They can see patients under the prescription of a dentist, see them as part of a separate treatment plan or can see them independently as part of their own practice. If your practice does not have a hygienist or therapist, your dentist may refer you to one or you can contact them directly.

What sort of brush should children use?2022-02-06T22:14:09+03:00

There are many different types of children’s toothbrushes, including brightly coloured brushes, some that change colour, some with favourite characters on the handle, and some with a timer. These all encourage children to brush their teeth. The most important thing is to use a small-headed toothbrush with soft, nylon bristles, suitable for the age of your child.

Using a power toothbrush, suitable for the age of your child, can help to make brushing fun and make sure your child brushes for the correct amount of time.

How much of my medical history do the dental team need to know?2022-02-06T23:06:10+03:00

The dental team will need to know your medical history and about any medicines that you are taking. This includes any regularly prescribed medicines from your doctor or another health provider (such as HIV medications and Hormone Replacement Therapy). To treat you properly, they also need to know your HIV status and whether you have had hepatitis.

Dentists will not judge or criticise you. They are there to help improve your oral health and answer any questions or concerns you may have about your mouth, teeth and gums.

Why should I consider white fillings?2022-02-06T18:56:54+03:00

Most people have fillings of one sort or another in their mouths.

Nowadays fillings can be natural looking. Many people are more conscious about the way they look, so they don’t want silver fillings that show when they laugh or smile.

Which is the best toothbrush to use?2022-02-06T21:05:03+03:00

It is usually recommended that adults use a toothbrush with a small- to medium-sized head with multi-tufted, soft to medium filaments (bristles). These filaments should be round ended and made from nylon.

Should I use fluoride toothpaste?2022-02-06T22:13:52+03:00

Your teeth can get fluoride in a number of different ways, including from toothpaste, specific fluoride applications and perhaps the drinking water in your area. These can all help to prevent tooth decay.

If you are unsure about how much fluoride you need in your toothpaste ask your dental team.

All children up to three years old should use a smear of toothpaste with a fluoride level of at least 1000ppm (parts per million). After three years old, they should use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste that contains 1350ppm to 1500ppm.

You can check the level of fluoride on the packaging of the toothpaste. Children should be supervised when brushing up to the age of 7. You should make sure that they do not rinse but spit out the toothpaste, and that they don’t swallow any if possible. This way the fluoride stays in the mouth for longer and will be more effective.

How to keep your teeth bright after teeth whitening?2022-02-06T18:56:04+03:00

There are many factors that cause staining or discoloration of the teeth. The most common ones include coffee, tea and red wine, tobacco use, dental trauma, ageing and certain medications. To keep your teeth bright after your treatment, avoid tobacco and stain-causing food and drinks for several days after your treatment. Regular brushing and flossing will also help remove buildup of stain.

Will I lose my tooth?2022-02-06T22:36:47+03:00

In some cases the tooth may need to be taken out, but not always. So it is important to get advice as soon as possible.

What are dental implants?2022-02-06T21:22:27+03:00

A dental implant is used to support one or more false teeth. It is a titanium screw that can replace the root of a tooth when it fails. Just like a tooth root, it is placed into the jawbone.

What is the dental therapist’s role in the practice?2022-02-06T19:07:46+03:00

As well as doing all the work that a dental hygienist does, a dental therapist can also carry out some dental procedures that patients are more used to a dentist doing. A dental therapist can do fillings, extract ‘baby’ teeth, place preformed crowns on baby teeth and do treatments using all the materials a dentist would use. As long as an adult tooth does not need treatment to the nerve of the tooth, a dental therapist can fill or restore any part of the tooth that needs treatment. They do not do restorations, such as crowns, to adult teeth.

Is dental treatment safe during pregnancy?2022-02-06T23:00:27+03:00

Yes. There should be no problems with routine treatment. If you are not sure what your treatment would involve, talk about all the options with your dentist. Some current guidelines suggest that old amalgam fillings should not be removed during pregnancy, and that new ones should not be put in. Talk to your dentist about having a different type of filling if you are unsure.

How do I care for my tooth afterwards?2022-02-06T19:56:50+03:00

Root-treated teeth should be looked after just the same as any other tooth. Remember to clean your teeth last thing at night and at least one other time during the day, with a fluoride toothpaste. Cut down on sugary foods and drinks, and have them only at mealtimes if possible. See your dental team as often as they recommend for regular check-ups.

Will mouthwash help?2022-02-06T22:11:21+03:00

You should not use a mouthwash just to disguise bad breath. So, if you find that you are using a mouthwash all the time, talk to your dental team. There are many mouthwashes that are specially formulated to help prevent bad breath and gum disease. Some mouthwashes that contain chlorhexidine, and are recommended for gum disease, can cause tooth staining if you use them for a long time. It is important to read the manufacturer’s instructions or ask how to use them.

How can I tell if I have bad breath?2022-02-06T22:08:44+03:00

Lots of small signs can show that you have bad breath. Have you noticed people stepping away from you when you start to talk? Do people turn their cheek when you kiss them goodbye?

If you think you might have bad breath, there is a simple test that you can do. Just lick the inside of your wrist and sniff – if the smell is bad, you can be fairly sure that your breath is too.

Or, ask a very good friend to be absolutely honest with you; but do make sure they are a true friend.

What does it involve?2022-02-06T19:46:52+03:00

The aim of the treatment is to remove all the infection from the root canal. The root is then cleaned and filled to prevent any further infection.

Root canal treatment is a skilled and time-consuming procedure. Most courses of treatment will involve two or more visits to your dentist.

At the first appointment, the infected pulp is removed and any abscesses can be drained. The root canal is then cleaned and shaped ready for the filling. A temporary filling is put in and the tooth is left to settle.

The tooth is checked at a later visit and when all the infection has cleared, the tooth is permanently filled.

What are the signs of mouth cancer?2022-02-06T20:46:41+03:00

Mouth cancer can appear in different forms and can affect all parts of the mouth, tongue and lips. Mouth cancer can appear as a painless mouth ulcer that does not heal normally. A white or red patch in the mouth can also develop into a cancer. Be aware of any unusual lumps in your mouth or jaw area and any persistent hoarseness. It is important to visit your dental team or doctor if these areas do not heal within three weeks. If you aren’t sure, go for a check-up anyway.

What do I do if I suffer a mouth or facial injury?2022-02-04T00:12:52+03:00

Falls, slips, and trips anywhere can result in injuries to the mouth and teeth. Slipping over around the pool, a child falling whilst playing, or participating in sports or enjoying adventure activities can result in damaged, broken or completely lost teeth.

Our advice: Time is crucial in the case of damaged teeth. Try and retrieve a lost tooth and keep it in a sealed container of milk. For both lost or damaged teeth, you should call us straight away to make an immediate visit where we can attempt to re-implant the tooth or use a tooth dressing. We have all the latest x-ray technology to help us make the best repair possible.

How much will my cracked tooth treatment cost?2022-02-06T22:39:04+03:00

The cost will vary depending on what treatment you need. There may be extra costs if there are complications and you need more treatment. Ask your dental team for a treatment plan and a written estimate before you start treatment.

How can it be treated?2022-02-06T22:32:43+03:00

There are a number of treatments, including crowns, veneers and orthodontics (braces). Ask your dental team which treatment is most suitable for you. Ask for an estimate of the cost and a written treatment plan before you start.

Antibiotic Prophylaxis for Heart Patients2022-02-06T18:36:03+03:00

At times physicians and dentists recommend that a patient take antibiotics before certain dental procedures. This is called “antibiotic prophylaxis.” But why do healthcare providers suggest this extra step?

We all have bacteria in our mouths, and a number of dental treatments—and even daily routines like chewing, brushing or flossing—can allow bacteria to enter the bloodstream (bacteremia). For most of us, this isn’t a problem. A healthy immune system prevents these bacteria from causing any harm. There is concern, however, that for some people bacteremia can cause an infection elsewhere in the body.

What if I don’t want my remaining teeth drilled?2022-02-06T22:30:36+03:00

Adhesive bridges are another way of bridging a gap, and less of the tooth needs removing. These bridges are made up of a false tooth with metal ‘wings’ on either side. These wings are made to bond to the teeth on either side, with very little drilling needed. Instead, the teeth are roughened and the bridge is fitted using a very strong composite resin.

What is a bridge?2022-02-06T22:30:18+03:00

Bridges are ideal for people who don’t like dentures and only have a few teeth missing. Bridges are usually made by putting a crown on the teeth on either side of the gap and attaching a false tooth in the middle.

The bridge can’t be removed. These bridges are usually made of precious metal bonded to porcelain. Sometimes other non-precious metals are used in the base to give it extra strength.

Why is this dental treatment important?2022-02-06T19:08:44+03:00

Regular professional cleaning to remove plaque and tartar, combined with looking after your teeth and gums properly at home, will help keep your mouth healthy. A clean and healthy mouth will improve your appearance, help you to keep your teeth and give you fresh breath.

What is gum disease?2022-02-06T21:35:44+03:00

Gum disease is described as swelling, soreness or infection of the tissues supporting the teeth. There are two main forms of gum disease: gingivitis and periodontal disease.

Where is root canal treatment carried out?2022-02-06T19:56:12+03:00

Root canal treatment is a routine dental procedure, which your dentist will be happy to do for you. However, sometimes your dentist may refer you to an endodontist, who is a specialist in this type of treatment.

What do I do if I’m on holiday in Antalya and I have a toothache?2022-02-04T00:13:38+03:00

If your child wakes in the night crying with pain in the mouth it can be distressing for everyone involved. Such pain is usually an indication that something is wrong, and could be a sign of infection, tooth decay, an erupting tooth, an abscess or exposed dental nerves.

Our advice: Contact us straight away to arrange an immediate visit so we can treat the problem and soothe the pain. Use suitable pain-relieving oral gels (only those approved for use with children). Avoid giving child hot or very cold fluids or food which could make the pain worse.

What are the main reasons for taking wisdom teeth out?2022-02-06T19:00:28+03:00

Far fewer wisdom teeth are now taken out than in the past. If the tooth is not causing problems, your dentist will not want to remove it. They will only remove wisdom teeth:

  • When it is clear that they will not be able to come through into a useful position because there is not enough room, and they are also causing some pain or discomfort.
  • If they have only partly come through and are decayed – these teeth will often decay as it will be difficult to clean them as thoroughly as your other teeth.
  • If they are painful.
Can I stop my teeth cracking?2022-02-06T22:38:22+03:00

Not altogether, but there are some precautions you can take:

  • Wear a mouthguard: If you grind your teeth at night, have a night-guard made to protect your teeth. If you play sports, wear a custom-made mouthguard.
  • Avoid biting or chewing on hard objects.
How can I prevent tooth decay in my child?2022-02-06T22:14:46+03:00

The main cause of tooth decay is not the amount of sugar or acid in the diet, but how often it is eaten or drunk. The more often your child has sugary or acidic foods or drinks, the more likely they are to have decay. So it is important to have sugary and acidic foods just at mealtimes. If you want to give your child a snack, try to stick to cheese, vegetables and fruit. Try to limit how much dried fruit you give as it is high in sugar.

Don’t give them drinks containing sugars, including fruit juices, between meals. Give them water or milk instead. For babies, don’t add sugar to their drinks, or to foods when you introduce them to solids.

It is also worth remembering that some processed baby foods contain quite a lot of sugar. Try checking the list of ingredients: the higher up the list sugar is, the more there is in the product. Generally anything ending in ‘ose’ is a sugar, for example: fructose, glucose, lactose or sucrose. Thorough brushing with a fluoride toothpaste last thing at night, and at least one other time during the day, will help to prevent tooth decay.

When should I take my baby to the dentist for the first time?2022-02-06T23:01:42+03:00

It is best to discuss this with your dental team first, but you could take your baby to your own routine check-ups. This can help the baby to get used to the surroundings. Your dental team will be able to offer advice and prescribe medicines for teething pains, and will be happy to answer any questions you may have. The baby’s own check-ups can start any time from about 6 months or from when the teeth start to appear.

Are implants safe and how long will they last?2022-02-06T21:22:51+03:00

Implants are a safe, well-established treatment. It’s probably true to say that implants, much like natural teeth, will last for as long as you care for them.

How well you look after your implants – and whether you go for your regular maintenance appointments – will have the biggest impact on how long they will last.

If you don’t look after your implants they will develop a coating similar to what you get on neglected natural teeth. Left untreated, this can lead to gum infection, bleeding, soreness and general discomfort. You could get all these problems with natural teeth.

If your implants are well looked after, and if the bone they are fitted to is strong and healthy, you can expect them to last for many years. However, just as with other surgical implants (such as a hip replacement) there is no lifetime guarantee.

I am afraid of injections, what can I do?2022-02-06T20:53:21+03:00

Many people are scared of the local anaesthetic injection needed to numb the tooth. Again, be sure to tell the dental team that this is something that bothers you. There are anaesthetic gels that can be applied to the area of the gum before the injection. This gel numbs the gum so that you cannot feel the needle.

What is dental erosion?2022-02-06T19:29:27+03:00

Dental erosion is the gradual loss of tooth enamel caused by acid attacks. Enamel is the hard, protective coating of the tooth. If it is worn away, the dentine underneath is exposed and your teeth can look discoloured and become sensitive.

Drink up

Acidic foods and drinks and fizzy drinks cause dental erosion.

Still water and milk are the best things to drink. Tea without sugar is also good for teeth as it contains fluoride.

Drink fruit juice just at mealtimes. If you want to drink fruit juices between meals, try diluting them with water.

Snacks

Avoid sugary snacks. If you need to eat between meals try these foods instead:

  • Plain popcorn.
  • Nuts.
  • Cheese.
  • Breadsticks.
  • Plain yogurt.
  • Rice cakes.
  • Unsweetened cereal.
  • Plain bagels.
  • Fresh soup.
  • Raw vegetable pieces.
  • Fresh fruit.
Why does the dentist leave the room during an x-ray?2022-02-06T18:57:16+03:00

The dental team might take hundreds of x-rays every week. Staff limit the amount of radiation they receive by moving away from the x-ray beam. However, the risk to patients from one or two routine x-rays is tiny.

Staff check how much radiation they are exposed to by wearing a small badge during working hours. This is sent off to be checked at regular intervals.

Why is dental care for mother and baby important?2022-02-06T22:59:21+03:00

Your dental health can suffer during your pregnancy. It is also important to look after both your and your baby’s dental health in the early months of your baby’s life to help make sure you both have healthy mouths in the future. There may also be a link between good gum health and good birth outcomes: for example, you may be less likely to have your baby early if you have healthy gums.

Are natural toothpastes available?2022-02-06T21:07:15+03:00

Yes, there are several toothpastes that contain special mineral salts and plant extracts. They are made of only natural ingredients and flavouring. Some products are produced without animal testing, and some are suitable for vegetarians and vegans. However, sometimes these toothpastes do not contain fluoride.

What is a crown made of?2022-02-06T22:29:36+03:00

Crowns can be made of a variety of different materials, such as porcelain or porcelain bonded to gold. New materials are continually being introduced. It is a good idea to talk to your dental team about which crown would be best for you.

At what age should I have orthodontic treatment?2022-02-06T20:40:52+03:00

The best time is generally during childhood, but adults can have orthodontic treatment too – and more and more are doing so. Age is less important than having the right number of teeth. In children it may be necessary to wait for enough teeth to come through before starting treatment.

What is an impacted wisdom tooth?2022-02-06T18:58:42+03:00

If there is not enough room, the wisdom tooth may try to come through, but will get stuck against the tooth in front of it. The wisdom tooth will be at an angle, and will be described by the dentist as ‘impacted’.

What else may be needed?2022-02-06T22:06:42+03:00

Once your teeth are clean, your dental team may need to treat the roots of the teeth to make sure that the last pockets of bacteria are removed. This is called ‘root planing’. You’ll probably need the treatment area to be numbed before anything is done. Afterwards, you may feel some discomfort for up to 48 hours.

When would I need a veneer?2022-02-06T19:10:39+03:00

Veneers can improve the colour, shape and position of your teeth. A precise shade of porcelain can be chosen to give the right colour to improve a single discoloured tooth or to lighten your front teeth. A veneer can make a chipped tooth look whole again.

The porcelain covers the whole of the front of the tooth, with a thicker section replacing the broken part. Veneers can also be used to close small gaps, when orthodontics (braces) are not suitable. If one tooth is slightly out of position, a veneer can sometimes be fitted to bring it into line with the others.

How do I care for my brace and teeth?2022-02-06T20:43:12+03:00

It is important to keep having your teeth checked by your dental team while you are having orthodontic treatment. You also need to take extra care of your teeth and mouth:

Clean your teeth carefully every day, including between your teeth where you can. Braces are delicate and you need to make sure you clean them carefully so that they do not break. Your dental team will be able to show you the special techniques to use depending on the appliance you are wearing.

Cut down on how often you have sugary foods and drinks. Avoid snacks and drinks containing sugars, and fizzy drinks. Also, sticky and hard foods may damage your brace.

Brush your teeth last thing at night and at least one other time during the day. Use a mouthwash if you need to. Your dental team may recommend a stronger fluoride toothpaste, or perhaps a fluoride gel or mouth rinse, for you to use.

My teeth are sensitive, what can I use?2022-02-06T21:06:58+03:00

There are several toothpastes that contain ‘desensitising agents’ to help reduce the pain of sensitive teeth. Some people find that rubbing this toothpaste along the affected area and leaving it on overnight helps ease the discomfort.

Is it worth replacing my amalgam fillings with white ones?2022-02-06T18:56:54+03:00

It is usually best to change fillings only when your dental team decide that an old filling needs replacing. If so, you can ask to have it replaced in a tooth-coloured material.

Some dentists prefer not to put white fillings in back teeth, as they are not always successful. One way around this would be to use crowns or inlays, but this can mean removing more of the tooth and can be more expensive.

What causes bad breath?2022-02-06T22:09:06+03:00

Bad breath is a very common problem and there are many different causes. Persistent bad breath is usually caused by the smelly gases released by the bacteria that coat your teeth, gums and tongue. Also, bits of food that get caught between the teeth and on the tongue, will rot and can sometimes cause an unpleasant smell. Strong foods like garlic, coffee and onions can add to the problem. So, it is very important to brush your teeth correctly and regularly. This will help keep your breath smelling fresh.

The bacteria on our teeth and gums (called ‘plaque’) also cause gum disease and tooth decay. One of the warning signs of gum disease is that you always have bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth. Again, your dental team will be able to see and treat the problem during your regular check-ups. The earlier the problems are found, the more effective the treatment will be.

How is a crown prepared?2022-02-06T22:54:59+03:00

The dentist will prepare the tooth to the ideal shape for the crown. This will involve removing a layer of the outer surface, leaving a strong inner core. The amount of the tooth removed will be the same as the thickness of the crown.

Once the tooth is shaped, the dental team will take an impression (mould) of the prepared tooth, one of the opposite jaw and possibly another to show the way you bite together.

The impressions will then be given to a dental technician, along with information about the shade to use and any other information they need.

Why are my teeth stained?2022-02-06T19:37:36+03:00

One of the effects of smoking is staining on the teeth due to the nicotine and tar in the tobacco. It can make your teeth yellow in a very short time, and heavy smokers often complain that their teeth are almost brown after years of smoking.

What should a crown for a tooth cost?2022-02-06T22:58:13+03:00

Costs will vary according to the type of crown and the material used. Always get a written estimate and treatment plan before starting any dental treatment.

Why do my teeth decay?2022-02-06T23:03:11+03:00

Decay happens when sugars in food and drinks react with the bacteria in plaque, forming acids. Every time you eat or drink anything containing sugars, these acids attack the teeth and start to soften and dissolve the enamel. The attacks can last for an hour after eating or drinking, before the natural salts in your saliva cause the enamel to ‘remineralise’ and harden again. It’s not just sugars that are harmful: other types of carbohydrate foods and drinks react with plaque and form acids. (These are the ‘fermentable’ carbohydrates: for example ‘hidden sugars’ in processed food, natural sugars like those in fruit and cooked starches).

Always check the ingredients. Generally anything with ‘ose’ in the name is a sugar, for example: sucrose, maltose and so on.

Having sugary or acidic snacks and drinks between meals can increase the risk of decay, because your teeth come under constant attack and do not have time to recover. It is therefore important not to keep having sugary snacks or sipping sugary drinks throughout the day.

Will the crown be noticeable?2022-02-06T22:56:31+03:00

The crown will be made to match your other teeth as closely as possible. The shade of the surrounding teeth will be recorded, to make sure that the colour looks natural and matches those teeth.

What about cleaning between my teeth?2022-02-06T21:07:49+03:00

Brushing alone only cleans three of the five surfaces of your teeth, so it is important that you also clean between your teeth every day using interdental brushes or floss. Your dental team will be able to show you how.

Will antibiotics help treat my dental pain?2022-02-06T18:33:46+03:00

Antibiotics are often prescribed to treat bacterial infections. When it comes to toothaches, however, an antibiotic prescription should be avoided unless absolutely necessary. By understanding antibiotics, you can talk confidently with your dentist about what’s causing you pain and how to fix it.

Is orthodontic work permanent?2022-02-06T20:43:46+03:00

Even after retention, it is normal for minor tooth movements to happen throughout life. So no permanent guarantee can be given. However, it is unusual for teeth to alter enough to need more treatment.

What is involved in a full check-up of the mouth?2022-02-06T20:47:22+03:00

The inside of your mouth and your tongue will be examined with the help of a small mirror. The examination will also look at your neck and underneath your jaw. Dentists will carry out this examination as part of a routine dental check-up. Remember, your dental team can see parts of your mouth that you cannot see easily yourself.

Can a hygienist help prevent dental disease?2022-02-06T19:09:03+03:00

This is what the training of the hygienist is all about. They will carefully remove the hard deposits of tartar (or ‘calculus’) that build up on the teeth and teach you how to prevent them coming back. This will do a lot to slow the progress of gum disease.

By talking to you about your diet, and recommending other preventive measures, the hygienist can help you keep to a routine that will slow down tooth decay. Regular visits and advice will help build your confidence in keeping your mouth healthy.

Do wisdom teeth always cause problems?2022-02-06T18:58:23+03:00

No. If there is enough room they will usually come through into a useful position and cause no more problems than any other tooth.

Often there will be some slight discomfort as they come through, but this will disappear once the tooth is fully in position.

Are there any medical problems which can cause dental erosion?2022-02-06T23:04:48+03:00

Bulimia is a condition where patients make themselves sick so that they lose weight. Because there are high levels of acid in the vomit, this can cause damage to tooth enamel.

Acids produced by the stomach can come up into the mouth (this is called gastro-oesophageal reflux). People suffering from hiatus hernia or oesophageal problems, or who drink too much alcohol, may also find they suffer from dental erosion due to vomiting.

Can I get coloured mouthguards?2022-02-06T20:49:32+03:00

There are many types of mouthguard including striped, multi-coloured and clear. Many people now have coloured mouthguards made in their favourite team’s colours or to match their own sports strip. Your dental team will be able to tell you whether they can provide coloured mouthguards.

Should I tell the dental team that I am nervous?2022-02-06T20:53:03+03:00

Yes. Make sure that the team know you are nervous, so that they can help you.

Tell your dental team what it is that you particularly dislike about dental treatment. If you think you know the reason, tell your dental team what may have caused your fear.

What can cause mouth cancer?2022-02-06T20:46:15+03:00

Most cases of mouth cancer are linked to tobacco and alcohol. Cigarette, cigar and pipe smoking are the main forms of tobacco use in many parts of the world. However, the traditional habits in some cultures of chewing tobacco, betel quid, gutkha and paan are particularly dangerous.

Alcohol increases the risk of mouth cancer, and if tobacco and alcohol are taken together the risk is even greater.

Over-exposure to sunlight can also increase the risk of cancer of the lips.

Many recent reports have linked mouth cancer to the human papillomavirus (HPV). HPV is the main cause of cervical cancer and affects the skin that lines the moist areas of the body.

HPV can be spread through oral sex, and research now suggests that HPV could soon rival smoking and drinking as one of the main causes of mouth cancer.

Practising safe sex and limiting the number of partners you have may help reduce your chances of getting HPV. Many people get HPV during their lives and for many this does not cause a problem.

There are now HPV vaccines for both girls and boys. They were developed to fight cervical cancer, but it is likely that they will also help to reduce the rates of mouth cancer. These vaccines are given at age 12 to 13 before sexual activity starts.

When will my child’s teeth appear?2022-02-06T22:13:11+03:00

First (or ‘baby’ or ‘milk’) teeth usually start to appear when your child is around 6 months old. All 20 baby teeth should appear by the age of 30 months. For more information, visit ‘Dental care for mother and baby’.

The first permanent ‘adult’ molars (back teeth) will appear at about 6 years, before the first baby teeth start to fall out at about 6 to 7. The permanent ‘adult’ teeth will then replace the ‘baby’ teeth. It is usually the lower front teeth that are lost first, followed by the upper front teeth shortly after. All permanent teeth should be in place by the age of 14, except the ‘wisdom’ teeth. These may appear any time between 18 and 25 years of age.

All children are different and develop at different rates.

What does it cost to remove wisdom teeth?2022-02-06T19:01:37+03:00

The cost of having wisdom teeth removed will vary according to the difficulty of the procedure and whether it is being carried out in a dental practice or hospital. It is always recommended that you get a written estimate before starting treatment.

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