You should visit the dentist twice a year for a dental check up for early detection of cavities, gum diseases and even oral cancer. You may need more frequent visits, depending on your dental needs and lifestyle. That is, smokers, diabetics, or people with weak immune systems or people prone to gum disease or cavities should visit more often than the average person. It is always best to consult one of our dentists to determine how many dental check ups you require for the year, as it may differ from time to time due to lifestyle factors.
It is important to have your teeth professionally cleaned by a dentist, as daily brushing cannot remove all those hard deposits on your teeth. Even brushing and flossing your teeth twice a day may not remove plaque in hard to reach areas such as between your teeth and gums. As a result, cavities and gum disease may occur. The main reason for tooth loss over the age of 40 is due to gum disease. Preventive measures are best by booking a dental cleaning at least twice a year to ensure a bright and healthy smile!
Dental fillings are used to restore a tooth that has been damaged by decay and to prevent further decay. The dentist removes the decay, cleans the affected area, and then fills the cavity with a dental filling material such as porcelain, composite (plastic) resin (tooth color), gold or amalgam (silver). The type of filling material depends on the extent of the damage to the tooth, the area, allergies and cost.
In some cases, a crown may be required if the decay has affected a large portion of the tooth. If the decay has reached the nerve, then a root canal treatment will be necessary.
Tooth extractions are necessary when a tooth is broken, damaged beyond repair, or very loose. The dentist will only remove the tooth from the socket if the tooth cannot be fixed with a filling or crown. There are two types of extractions – simple and surgical. Simple extractions are performed by loosening the tooth and removing it with forceps.
Alternatively, surgical extractions are performed by making an incision into the gum and removing the tooth. If stitches are necessary, usually the dental surgeon will use dissoluble stitches.
Tooth extractions are also necessary in the following cases:
- Extra teeth that obstruct other teeth from coming in
- Baby teeth that don’t fall out, which obstruct permanent teeth from coming in
- Wisdom teeth if they cause pain or are infected.