Can an eating disorder affect my dental hygiene?

Frequent vomiting by people with an eating disorder can cause both short- and long-term damage to dental health.

If you have an eating disorder, it is important that you understand the consequences of frequent vomiting and what you can do to minimise dental damage.

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What is plaque?

Plaque is a thin, sticky, colourless deposit of bacteria that constantly forms on everyone's teeth. 

What causes decay?

Decay is caused by dental plaque. When food is eaten, the bacteria in plaque use the food to produce acids that attack the tooth enamel. After repeated acid attacks, the enamel breaks down, and a cavity (hole) is formed. This cavity is the decay. They can occur on any surface of the tooth.

Why is fluoride so important?

Fluoride dramatically decreases your chances of getting cavities by making teeth stronger. Fluoride helps to remineralise the lost tooth structure and so also helps to stop cavities in its initial stages.Fluoride in the drinking water is the best and easiest way to get it. Other sources of fluoride are from toothpaste and at the dentist who uses fluoride after every scale (clean).

Should I worry about thumb or finger sucking?

Thumb sucking is perfectly normal for infants and most children stop by age two. If your child does not stop thumb sucking try to discourage it by age four. Prolonged thumb sucking can create crowded, crooked teeth, bite problems and a very narrow jaw arch line. We can suggest ways to address a prolonged thumb sucking habit.

What is a fissure sealant?

A fissure sealant is a clear or shaded material that is applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth (premolars and molars) where decay occurs most often. This sealant acts as a barrier, protecting the decay prone areas of the back teeth from plaque and acid. No drilling is required to place this sealant.

Implants- Frequently Asked Questions

What are Dental implants?

Dental Implants consist of a titanium rod being inserted in the gum, where a tooth has been lost. Implants secure the placement of your new replacement tooth (crown) and help retain the alignment of your surrounding teeth.

Will my implant supported teeth be uncomfortable and push on my gum tissue like a partial or a full denture does?

No. Your implant-supported teeth are fixed in place. They will not slip and do not need to be removed for cleaning. They do not press on the gum tissue and therefore do not create any of the discomfort common with dentures.

Can people tell if I have had dental implants?

An initial examination assesses your smile to determine the location of the junction between the fixed bridge and the jawbone. We are able to adjust your smile line during the procedure to make sure your new smile is not too gummy and that the top (or bottom) of your prosthesis is completely hidden. Also the implant will be matched to the shade, shape and of your teeth to make it look as natural as possible,

How will it affect my diet? When can I eat solid food again?

Solid foods can be eaten the same day – but not all solid food. Initially you must follow a modified food diet. That is foods that are soft enough to be cut with a fork.

Examples of the modified food diet are scrambled eggs, meatloaf, mashed potatoes, hamburger, fish and pasta. Depending on the position of implant, you cannot eat foods that require any tearing or biting with your front teeth (pizza, sandwiches, fruit), esp if the implant is for any front tooth (incisor or canine). Avoid hard foods such as carrots, chips, apples, nuts and chewing gum.

The modified diet applies until you receive your permanent prosthesis (usually about six months). Once your final bridges are fitted with the titanium frame you can resume a normal diet.

Why do I have to wear a provisional set of teeth and not my permanent new teeth right away?

On the day of your procedure we place the implants and a new set of teeth called a long-term provisional prosthesis. This provisional set of teeth is made entirely of acrylic resin, which places less stress on your new implants during their first few months of use. The teeth are fixed in place and are fully functional. You can laugh, talk, play sports and be normally active. Your smile is perfect.

You must be careful what foods you eat in the first few weeks following your procedure and your normal diet must exclude hard, tough or brittle foods for a few more months.

Once your gums have healed and the implants are completely stable (usually about six months) we fabricate a permanent bridge with acrylic or porcelain teeth. These teeth have a titanium framework inside.

This permanent set of teeth is fitted to your gums and adjusted to be sure we achieve an ideal fit in your mouth and your bite and smile are perfect.

If I need both upper and lower full-arch replacements, do they both have to be done at the same time?

Thebest way to control your biting plane and bite is to do both at the same. Also it means shorter term discomfort and fewer visits to the dentist.

However, treatment can be sequenced to meet the financial, health or other individual needs of the patient.

What can Crowns and Bridges do for my smile?

Crowns can improve your smile by covering cracks and chips in your natural tooth with a ceramic sleeve. Also crowns are required after RCT to protect and support the tooth. This will restore function and strength to the tooth. Bridges can close a gap in the smile, with an artificial tooth secured between two crowns. These two crowns will fit over the natural teeth next to the vacancy, and the artificial tooth will sit firmly in the space.

What are Veneers?

Veneers are porcelain shells that are placed over discoloured, stained, chipped or cracked teeth. This shell will match your natural tooth colour and shape and improve the appearance of your teeth.

What is Snap On Smile?

The Snap On Smile can instantly cover discoloured teeth, gaps and mildly crooked teeth. Snap on Smile will attach to your original tooth using an attachment mechanism with no adhesives required. They are an advanced innovation to provide instant improvement and can be conveniently removed whenever patients desire.

How can bonding fix my smile?

Resin Bonding can improve chips, cracks or discolouration of the teeth. Using a tooth-coloured adhesive, we can cover chips using a layering technique. The resin composite is then hardened and set by a heat-activated light. After the resin is set, it is then polished to blend with the natural tooth surface.

Do you provide teeth whitening?

Yes, we provide take home tray treatment or in office tooth whitening. Tray whitening is administered in a custom-made tray for patients to use at home, day or night. In office whitening is administered in the dental chair with our whitening product. Cool blue LED light is used to activate the process and produce dazzling results. We use the most trusted brand in the industry – Philips Zoom

What fillings do you use?

We use tooth-coloured fillings that are safe and durable for our patients. They are matched to the colour of your tooth and are virtually invisible. They are a modern choice to ensure your bright smile and secure your oral health. In rare cases silver amalgam fillings may be used but only after consent of patient and careful consideration of its requirement

How do I know if I need Root Canal Treatment?

You will most likely require Root Canal Treatment, if you have painful, red or swollen gums, or you have pus in the area of pain, have pain when chewing or biting and notice looseness of the tooth. All these symptoms are tell-tale signs of an infection in the tooth’s pulp (inside of tooth). The tooth will need to be treated and cleaned to get rid of infection without delay. 

What does Periodontal treatment assist?

Periodontal treatment is treatment for advanced stages of gum disease. If you have gum disease and it is left untreated, you may be at risk of tooth loss. We tailor preventative oral programs so our patients don’t ever run the risk of reaching this stage of disease. However if the patient is showing signs of bleeding and pain in the gum region, we do our best to scale and clean calculus from the gums to restore them to pristine health. When gum and/or bone condition further deteriorates, we may have to do surgery to help assist it back to health.

Do you autoclave all your instruments? What infection control procedures do you take?

Yes we autoclave all our instruments, and dispose of single use equipment each and every time. Keeping you protected is of the highest importance to us.

During the autoclaving procedure steam penetrates enclosed items at extreme temperatures for a set amount of time. We keep a constant tracking process of sterilization steps to ensure successful sterilization. Please read our sterilization blog to know about all the steps we take at DENTALINI to protect you!!

What is gum disease?

Gum disease is the inflammation caused by plaque and tartar buildup which releases toxins into the gum area. When the tissues supporting the teeth break down due to the inflammation, the teeth may have to be removed. Because of this process, gum disease (and not decay) is the biggest cause of tooth loss in adults today.

An important thing to remember is that gum disease doesn't usually cause pain until the disease is in the advanced stages. Symptoms include; red swollen gums, bleeding gums when brushing, bad breath, tartar / calculus build up, shrinking gums, receded gums, loose teeth that move, pus from gums with no pain in tooth/teeth. Severe gum disease can also cause raised body temperatures.

How can I fix gum disease?

Treatment will depend on how advanced the gum disease is. The most common form of treating the gum disease is through professional scaling (cleaning) to remove all the plaque and calculus from above and below the gum margins. For severe cases, multiple cleans are required. At times, specialist care with a Periodontist (gum specialist) can slow or stop the devastating consequences of losing many teeth.

How often should I have dental visits?

Depending upon your oral health risks, we will recommend examinations either once or twice a year. Our aim is for your mouth to be healthy and stable so your teeth last a lifetime with a minimum of worries, complications, and cost. 

Why should I have regular dental visits?

Dentistry's greatest progress over recent decades is in preventive dental care techniques. There is no reason why a healthy set of teeth cannot stay filling free for a lifetime if the correct approach is taken together - by you and us. One of the most satisfying aspects of our work is to be able to give you the all clear at examinations. By having regular dental examinations, we aim to assist you in identifying risk factors and take the necessary actions at the 1st instance of development or even before if possible.

By the time you can notice discomfort in a tooth, it's possible that treatment can become more complicated. Decay doesn't happen overnight, and if we can identify this early, we can save you time, discomfort, and cost.

Why does it feel like that every time I visit a dentist more treatment is required?

As a practice with a philosophy of preventive dental care, we strive to minimize the amount of treatment that you require. It's important to know that not all dental treatment has the same level of priority. For this reason, for all treatment we propose we will truthfully inform you of whether the treatment is urgent, beneficial over the longer term, or completely optional.

How do you get rid of staining?

Staining on teeth may be from different sources and therefore require different methods to remove or disguise. Some superficial stains from coffee, tea, smoking, tartar may be removed with a simple professional clean.

If the stains are deeper like some smoking stains, naturally yellower teeth, or discoloured patches on teeth, the treatment may involve whitening, or placing restorations over the tooth to disguise the problem by bonding tooth coloured filling, porcelain veneers or crowns

If stains are internal due to tooth defects or antibiotics, then the only treatment is to cover it with veneers or crowns. . There are many ways to fix these problems. It really depends on the cause and what method is best for your situation.

Porcelain Vaneers and Crowns- Frequently Asked Questions

What are porcelain veneers?

Porcelain veneers are thin porcelain facings that are permanently bonded to the outer surfaces of teeth. They have the ability to change the colour, shape and alignment of teeth on which they are placed.

What are porcelain dental crowns?

Porcelain crowns are very similar to porcelain veneers. The principal difference is the amount of tooth structure covered by the porcelain. Crowns cover the entire tooth, and are therefore often required when a substantial amount of tooth structure has been lost (e.g. broken teeth, root-filled teeth). The appearance of a porcelain crown is identical to that of a porcelain veneer when viewed in a smile.

Do I need a porcelain veneer or a crown?

We evaluate each tooth individually and place the restoration most appropriate to each patient’s needs. Often in cases involving multiple teeth a combination of porcelain veneers and crowns is placed.

How long do porcelain veneers and crowns last?

With good home care and regular dental visits the lifespan of a porcelain veneer or crown is usually at least 15 years. Porcelain veneers and crowns are stain resistant and do not discolour at all.

Will the porcelain veneers and crowns look natural?

At Dentalini our principal aim is to provide our patients with beautiful, natural looking smiles. Our training, experience, and artistic eye ensure that all of our porcelain veneers and dental crowns look like real teeth, as opposed to the often bulky and artificial-looking veneers placed by less exacting dentists. We also ensure your complete satisfaction with your aesthetic result by allowing for your input into the design, shape and colour of your veneers and crowns.

How many dental visits are required?

Porcelain veneers and dental crowns can usually be completed in 2 or 3 dental visits. During the first visit the teeth are prepared and provisional veneers/crowns are placed. These provisional restorations are made to the patient’s specifications, and act to cover the prepared teeth while the permanent veneers/crowns are made. The patient therefore leaves their first appointment with a beautiful new smile.

Who is a candidate for Porcelain Veneers and Dental Crowns?

Virtually anyone wanting to change the appearance of their teeth can benefit from porcelain veneers and crowns. Porcelain veneers and crowns can correct:

  • Crooked or misaligned teeth
  • Crowded teeth
  • Chipped or worn teeth
  • Diastemas (spaces between the teeth)
  • Permanently stained or discoloured teeth
  • Have unhealthy teeth, e.g. those with excessive decay
  • Have unhealthy gums, e.g. active periodontal disease
  • Have severe malocclusions best treated with orthodontics
  • Are under 18 years of age

Porcelain veneers and dental crowns can, in many cases be used as an alternative to orthodontic treatment.

Porcelain veneers and dental crowns are not a good choice for individuals who:

  • Have unhealthy teeth, e.g. those with excessive decay
  • Have unhealthy gums, e.g. active periodontal disease
  • Have severe malocclusions best treated with orthodontics
  • Are under 18 years of age