Frequently Asked Questions
How do I lodge a claim to my private health fund?
We have a “Hicaps” terminal so that you can claim on the spot with your private health fund card. This way you only have to pay the balance at the end of each appointment.
How long does tooth bleaching take?
After an initial ½ hr treatment with stronger bleach in the surgery, you place the bleach in the trays for ½ an hour twice a day for 9 -10 days.
What is the procedure for a tooth implant?
After discussions with you, we refer you to our Periodontist, who will take X-rays or CT scans to determine the depth and quality of bone at the site. An implant is surgically placed and left to heal for 3-6 months. Following this, a minor procedure is done to place a healing cap which produces the ideal gum shape for the crown. We then take impressions for a crown and either cement or screw it to the implant.
Why do I have to replace a missing tooth?
Teeth respond to eruptive forces, biting and tongue and lip forces; they won’t stay where they are if there is a gap in the arch. Also the opposing tooth or teeth can over-erupt, creating bite problems and food packing.
What options do I have to replace missing teeth?
There are 3 basic options; implant supported crowns or bridges; tooth supported bridges or removable partial dentures. There are various types and combinations of the above depending on the situation.
What usually happens at my first appointment?
We welcome you and ask you to fill out an acquaintance form and medical history. An examination of your mouth, both teeth and soft tissues is carried out. Sometimes X rays are necessary which can be done at the time. Once we determine if any work needs to be done in your mouth, we discuss it with you. If it is fairly simple we will quote you for the work and if time permits start. If there is a complex restorative treatment plan we will write it out once X rays are on hand and post it to you with a quote, timing options and alternatives so you have control over your treatment. If you have no other problems, we will usually give your teeth a thorough scale, clean and fluoride treatment.
How often should I have my teeth checked?
Usually we send a recall notice to you every 6 months. Sometimes this is varied to 3 or 12 months depending on the preventive needs in your mouth.
I grind my teeth in my sleep or clench my teeth at work. Can you help?
Yes we can. Stress is usually the underlying issue. Becoming aware of possible root causes is the first step to overcoming the problem. We will examine the jaw muscles; joint teeth and gums to see where the problem is manifesting. Adjusting the bite, or how the teeth connect can help greatly. Also wearing a bite splint at night can greatly reduce wear, sensitivity of teeth and jaw, head and neck pain. This is one of our areas of expertise. We also utilize the expert services of an Osteopath, Dr Michael Hubbard who works in our surgery to help with head, neck/shoulder pain.
How much is my first visit likely to cost?
An Initial examination is $78.00 and a routine scale, clean and fluoride treatment is $157.00. If anything else is needed, we will quote you.
How long is my first visit?
Usually 30 to 45 minutes – we want to be thorough, and get to know you, your desires and expectations to serve you better.
I have a fear of dentists, can you help?
Yes. We have vast experience in gently helping you to overcome dental phobias. We believe that by taking time in explanation and reassurance most fear can be overcome (rather than medicate it and never get over it).
Why do my gums bleed when I brush?
It is usually due to inflammation caused by plaque on the teeth. More effective brushing aimed to clean the crevice between the tooth and gum will remove the plaque so the gums can recover. Don’t brush and floss less, but more.
What causes toothache?
Either inflammation or infection, causes the pulp of the tooth to react. Untreated decay progresses toward the tooth pulp. If the pulp becomes infected an abscess can result leading to either extraction or root canal therapy. Cracks in teeth caused by clenching and grinding flex the tooth and cause fluid movement affecting inflammation in the pulp. Adjusting the bite or treating the crack may stop the tooth sensitivity or ache.
What causes tooth decay?
Tooth decay (caries) is a disease state caused by the acidic products of bacterial plaque on the teeth. The acids remove minerals from the enamel just under the surface causing white spots on the teeth, which is reversible at this early stage. Once a cavity occurs, a restorations (filling) is needed. Tooth decay is prevented by good tooth brushing and flossing to remove plaque.
When is the best time to schedule my child's first visit to a dentist?
The best time to schedule a child’s first dental visit is around the third birthday -- in some cases, as early as 1. Do not wait until the child is in pain to have a first visit to the dentist.
When will my baby's teeth first appear?
Upper teeth starting at 8 months up to 35 months of age; lower teeth starting at 6 months up to 31 months.
When should I start cleaning my child's teeth?
You should begin cleaning your child’s mouth even before teeth appear. Teeth and gums should be cleaned at least twice a day.