How often do I need my teeth cleaned by the Oral Health Therapist (Scale and Polish)?
To some extent this is dependent on the situation in your mouth as there are many factors that contribute to the growth of scale. As a guide we recommend at least once a year as a standard length of time and 6 months for people with a higher build-up rate.
Scale is a term given to plaque, the substance that forms a yellow film on your teeth, once it has hardened onto your enamel over a period of time. Once hardened it is impossible to remove at home with a toothbrush or floss, this is why it is necessary to visit the dentist for ultrasonic removal.
Although as people age scale tends to build up quicker a healthy 'at home' hygiene programme of brushing and flossing can restrict and inhibit growth.
If you have not had your teeth examined or cleaned for a length of time the best thing you can do is visit the Oral Health Therapist and have your teeth cleaned, you can then be given a time period until you next visit.
Should I have all my old amalgam fillings removed and replaced with white composite fillings?
At our practice we believe that this is not always the best course of action.
While composite fillings are superb in cosmetic situations there are some instances where amalgam fillings will work better and last longer in the mouth. This is particularly true for posterior (back teeth) or deep fillings (below gum line).
Amalgam is a harder, longer lasting substance than the composite material and generally lasts about twice as long. This is why for chewing teeth amalgam can be a more cost-effective solution.
The old saying "if it's not broken don't fix it" also plays a part in the decision to replace old fillings. Removing long-standing fillings can stir up problems in teeth that may have lasted quite comfortably without replacement. Thus replacement of fillings requires careful consideration and should not be undertaken without understanding risks.
Do I need to have my wisdom teeth removed?
Unless wisdom teeth are causing you problems it is not absolutely necessary to have them removed as long as they are maintained in a regular dentist programme.
Many people's wisdom teeth come through without any problem and, so long as they are able to be kept clean, can function as normal teeth.
Problems can occur through impaction - teeth growing at the wrong angle, crowding, headaches, earache, sore throat, painful gums or swollen glands. Should you experience any of the mentioned symptoms please make an appointment. Our Dentist specialisation in sedation provides an attractive alternative to traditional extractions which can be traumatising.
Will bleaching damage my teeth?
Teeth whitening systems bleach out impurities on the surface of your teeth. Thus after bleaching, the enamel surface of the teeth is stripped back and on a microscopic level would appear slightly rough. Though not damaged it is more susceptible at this point to re-staining as fluoride ions have been removed. It is for this reason that we recommend you avoid drinking things such as red wine and coffee in the time immediately after you complete your whitening.
29A Peach Parade, Remuera, Auckland
(09) 520 0292