FAQ

PEDIATRIC DENTISTRY

Why do we need to take care of milk teeth?

Children need healthy teeth to chew well, to speak clearly and for a bright smile.A health primary dentition also helps in the proper development of the adult dentition.As a parent you can make a life time of good health a reality for your child if you get him or her on the right track early. In fact good oral health begins with you.

When should my child start to see a dentist?

This should be scheduled around 6 months of age or when your child gets her first tooth. Your dentist will check the teeth and gums for any problems and will also tell you how to take care of them

What is fluoride? Will my child benefit from it?

Fluoride is a natural mineral that helps strengthen tooth enamel.We all have bacteria in our mouths and they live on food material left in our mouths and produce acids as waste products.These acids demineralize the enamel. Luckily minerals in the saliva can remineralise the teeth when the decay first starts but the mending process needs fluoride to work properly.

How does fluoride help?

When a young child ingests fluoride in small doses, it gets incorporated into the developing teeth making them more resistant to acid attack.Fluoride also works directly on the teeth of adults and children by helping speed remineralisation.

How can fluoride be administered?

Fluoride in foods ,supplements and fluoridated water are in ingested and incorporated into developing teeth. Topical fluoride(applied on the surface) can be applied in the form of toothpaste, mouthwash or office fluoride treatment. Fluoride treatments are given in the office in the form of gel, foam or varnish. The fluorides used in these treatments are of a higher strength than in mouthwashes and tooth pastes.

What are fissure sealants?

Fissures are grooves on the biting surface of back teeth.As they are more difficult to clean there is arisk of decay. A sealant is a protective coating that is applied over the grooves.This forms a hard shield that keeps food and bacteria from getting into tiny grooves and causing decay.

When should sealants be placed?

They are applied as soon as the permanent first molars come in(around 6 years of age) .The rest of the teeth are sealed as soon as they come in(10-14 years of age)

ORTHODONTICS

How can crooked teeth be straightened?

This can be done by orthodontic treatment which most often employs fixed appliance therapy.

What are fixed appliances?

Commonly reffered to as braces they are stuck to your teeth with the help of a kind of glue and can be fitted and removed only by an orthodontist.

What kind of fixed appliances are there?

There are metal ones, tooth coloured ones (ceramic) ones and invisible (lingual) ones that are stuck to the inside of your teeth.

What do I have to do during the course of orthodontic treatment?

Your cooperation is crucial to success. During treatment you need to Keep your braces and teeth clean.
Keep regular appointments.
Avoid doing anything that might break them( your dentist will advise you)
Wear rubber bands or other auxiliaries that your orthodontist might want you to wear)

Can braces be done for adults?

Yes but the treatment time might be slightly longer than for children.

OTHER ASPECTS OF DENTISTRY

What is scaling?

It is acleaning process whereby the deposits on the teeth are removed.Calculus or hardened plaque is not easy to remove by regular brushing but it can be removed by the dentist by using special instruments. Scaling and polishing can remove stains from cigarettes, tea ,coffee .etc

How often should I get my teeth cleaned and what are the benefits?

It is recommended that you get your teeth cleaned every 6 months.
Regular scaling and polishing helps you keep your gums and teeth healthy.

What is cosmetic dentistry?

It is a way of improving your appearance by way of treatments that straighten , lighten, reshape and repair teeth.
Cosmetic treatment include

  • Veneers
  • White fillings
  • Crowns
  • Bridges
  • Bleaching
What are veneers?

They are thin slices of porcelain that are precisely made to fit over the visible surface of the front teeth like a false fingernail over a nail. They greatly improve the appearance of your teeth. The tooth may have been damaged by decay, accidents,or may be discolored or may have imperfections.

What are white fillings?

A filing replaces part of a tooth that has been damaged by decay or trauma and it gives both form and function.Fillings which are made of composite, glass ionomer.etc are called white fillings.
In addition to filling decayed teeth they can be used to repair chipped ,broken or worn teeth.It can also be used as a veneer to cover marks and discolouration that cleaning will not remove.
They come in arrange of shades so they can be matched to the colour of your teeth.

What is a bridge?

A bridge replaces a missing tooth or teeth by fixing the replacement to the natural teeth on either side of the gap.It improves the way you look , chew, bite and speak.

What is bleaching?

Like hair and skin the colour of your teeth vary.The colour of your teeth can be lightened by a specially formulated bleaching gel on the teeth, followed by the application of a light source.

What are the side effects of bleaching?

Some people may find their teeth become sensitive to hot and cold food and drink.Others may report a discomfort in their gums.These symptoms are usually temporary and should disappear within a few days.

What is root canal treatment?

At the core of each tooth is amass of soft tissue called the pulp which in a healthy tooth contains living fibres ,cells , nerves and a blood supply.Decay or injury can destroy the pulp.
Root canal treatment involves removing the dead or damaged pulpand filling the space left in the chamber and canals. The remaining tooth is then restored with a crown for extra strength and support.