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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Have a question? See if we can answer it below.

Your cosmetic dentistry questions answered by Dr Steyn. Learn about the differences between implants and dentures, fillings and inlays.

GENERAL QUESTIONS


What is an allograft?

Puros grafts are classified as allograft material. An allograft consists of tissue intended for transplantation into another individual of the same species. According to the American Association of Tissue Banks, over the past five years approximately 7.5 million bone and tissue allografts have been distributed to surgeons for transplantation into patients.

What is a bone graft?

Bone grafts are used to fill bony defects, provide structural support, and build up deficient areas of the jaw when bone loss occurs. For example, it is sometimes necessary to rebuild the bone by using a bone graft prior to placing dental implants or dentures. There are different types of grafting materials available to treat various conditions. Consult with your doctor for the options that will be best for treating your case.

Why do I need a bone graft?

Doctors usually recommend a bone graft when there is not enough bone available to place a dental implant or dentures. This typically occurs as a result of bone resorption that takes place when teeth are not present. Bone grafting procedures restore bone that has been lost due to resorption. This type of procedure is common for many implant patients.

I am missing all the teeth in my upper/lower jaw. What are my options?

If you are missing all of your teeth in the upper and/or lower jaw and currently use a removable full denture, then an implant-supported denture could be the right solution for you. Unlike removable full dentures which can fit poorly, cause gum irritation and pain from exposed nerves, implant-supported bridges or dentures virtually eliminate slipping and movement, so there's no pain, no embarrassment, and no worries. You'll be able to laugh and speak with confidence, and enjoy your favourite foods with ease.

Experience new freedom with an implant-supported bridge or denture.

  • Maintains integrity of facial structure (helps prevent further bone deterioration)*
  • Increases comfort and stability
  • Restores a more secure biting ability than a removable denture
  • Eliminates need for adhesives
  • Improves appearance (lost lip support restored)
  • Builds confidence in eating and speaking more clearly
*Claims based on previous studies and case reports

Traditional treatment option:

Removable Full Denture

Removable Full Denture with no attachment for denture stability.

Dental implant options:

Dental implants are the most effective way to retain and support a complete denture, especially a lower one. Poorly fitting dentures were found to affect not only the ability to chew and speak, but also patients' self esteem. Two to four dental implants with attachments or a bar keep the denture firmly in place, enhancing your quality of life and enabling you to eat, laugh and smile with confidence at any situationImplant-Retained Denture

Implant-Retained Denture provides a removable, stable denture. Dental implants are the most effective way to retain and support a complete denture, especially a lower one. Poorly fitting dentures were found to affect not only the ability to chew and speak, but also patients' self esteem. Two to four dental implants with attachments or a bar keep the denture firmly in place, enhancing your quality of life and enabling you to eat, laugh and smile with confidence at any situation

Patients with a completely edentulous jaw can now avoid the hassle associated with removable dentures. Supported by eight or more implants, a fixed restoration (a bridge) is the ultimate solution for those who wish to improve their chewing ability and enjoy better quality of life.Implant-Supported Denture

Fixed Implant-Supported Denture provides the patient with a non-removable, stable dentition. Patients with a completely edentulous jaw can now avoid the hassle associated with removable dentures. Supported by eight or more implants, a fixed restoration (a bridge) is the ultimate solution for those who wish to improve their chewing ability and enjoy better quality of life.

Before and after clinical example:

Before Dental ImplantsBefore implant placement, denture patient is missing all teeth and losing bone.
Before Dental ImplantsAfter implant placement, the patient has stable, restored dentition with function and aesthetics.
*Clinical slides provided by Dr. Scott Ganz and Dr. Mark Adams.

I am missing more than one tooth. What are my options?

If you are missing multiple teeth, then an implant-supported bridge may be the cosmetic dentistry solution for you. Unlike traditional bridgework or removable partial dentures that can slip, come loose, and cause irritation, an implant-supported bridge stays secure and strong, and won't cause problems for your adjacent teeth. So comfortable and natural, they'll look and feel just like your own teeth.

Experience new comfort and stability with an implant-supported bridge.

  • Looks, feels and performs like your natural teeth
  • Does not compromise adjacent teeth to support a bridge
  • Preserves surrounding bone (replaces tooth root)*
  • Bridge attaches securely to implants
  • Prevents bone collapse and jaw line recession*
  • Restores a more secure biting ability than a removable denture
  • Eliminates recurrent wear around prepared teeth
  • Improves appearance and self-esteem
*Claims based on previous studies and case reports

Traditional treatment option:

Removable Partial Denture

A removable partial denture can lead to further bone and tooth loss.

Dental implant option:

When few adjacent teeth are missing or badly damaged, multiple dental implants may be placed to support an implantsupported bridge. This advantageous alternative avoids the hassle involved with the use of partial dentures. It makes the use of metallic clasps unnecessary, resulting in better esthetics, and causes no harm to adjacent teeth. The result is a more convenient solution that enhances quality of life while keeping your teeth healthy.Implant-Supported Bridge

An implant restoration will maintain your surrounding bone and soft tissue, as well as replace your missing teeth with natural-looking implants. When few adjacent teeth are missing or badly damaged, multiple dental implants may be placed to support an implant supported bridge. This advantageous alternative avoids the hassle involved with the use of partial dentures. It makes the use of metallic clasps unnecessary, resulting in better aesthetics, and causes no harm to adjacent teeth. The result is a more convenient solution that enhances quality of life while keeping your teeth healthy.

Before and after clinical example:

Before ImplantsBefore implant placement, the space in the patient's mouth often prevents correct function and can be visually displeasing to the patient.
After ImplantsAfter implant placement, function and esthetics are restored to the patient.

*Clinical slides provided by Dr. Philippe Russe.

I am missing a single tooth. What are my options?

There are several different types of implants to fit your individual case. If you are missing a single tooth and currently use a removable partial denture or tooth-supported crown, an implant-supported crown may be a better alternative. Single tooth replacements look and feel so natural, typically only you and your practitioner will know the difference.

Implant-supported crowns are a naturally better solution.

  • Looks, feels and performs similar to your natural tooth
  • Does not compromise your adjacent teeth to support a bridge
  • Preserves surrounding bone (replaces tooth root)*
  • Prevents bone collapse and jaw line recession*
  • Oral care is the same as a natural tooth
  • Restores a more secure biting ability than a removable denture
  • Restores self-confidence and appearance
*Claims based on previous studies and case reports

Traditional treatment options:

Tooth-Supported Crown

An alternative treatment is to cut down adjacent good teeth to support a bridge to hold the missing tooth.

Removable Partial Denture

A removable partial denture can lead to further bone and tooth loss.

Dental implant option:

If you need to replace just one tooth, an implant may be a more effective alternative to traditional bridge work. A standard bridge work requires cutting down adjacent teeth to support the new bridge. The supporting teeth become more susceptible to caries, and may eventually be lost too. A dental implant not only preserves bone and gum tissues but also avoids cutting down neighboring teeth, allowing their longer and healthier life span.Implant-Supported Crown

An implant restoration will maintain your surrounding bone and soft tissue, and replace your missing tooth with a natural-looking restoration. If you need to replace just one tooth, an implant may be a more effective alternative to traditional bridge work. A standard bridge work requires cutting down adjacent teeth to support the new bridge. The supporting teeth become more susceptible to caries, and may eventually be lost too. A dental implant not only preserves bone and gum tissues but also avoids cutting down neighboring teeth, allowing their longer and healthier life span.

Before and after clinical example:

Before Implant placementBefore implant placement, there is an unsightly space in the patient's mouth.
After Implant placementAfter implant placement, function and aesthetics are restored to the patient.

*Clinical slides provided by Dr. Philippe Russe

 

My teeth are irregular, what can I do?

Cosmetic contouring, porcelain laminate veneers, orthodontics, or crowns can be used to correct this.

What is the difference between bonding and porcelain laminate veneers?

Bonding is when a tooth-coloured plastic-resin material is applied to your teeth and shaped by the dentist. This can be done in one visit. Porcelain veneers are wafer-thin layers of life-like porcelain that are then bonded to the surface of teeth to improve their colour and shape. Produced in laboratories, they have enamel-like qualities, similar to natural teeth. A veneer requires at least two visits.

Can I still bleach my teeth if some are crowns or caps?

Yes, however only the teeth will whiten, not the crowns. The crowns can be replaced and matched to the desired colour once bleaching is done.

Do whitening toothpastes help?

Toothpaste are not as effective as professional bleaching agents. In addition, they sometimes contain abrasives that may harm the teeth.

What can I do if I smoke to whiten my teeth?

Whitening your teeth will help, but the effect will not last as long as it would if you did not smoke.

I have one dark tooth in the front. Will regular at-home bleaching make it lighter?

External bleaching may not help. Internal bleaching may be the solution if the tooth has had the nerve removed (root canal treatment). If not, consider porcelain veneering, or capping the tooth to mask the darkness.

My old fillings in the front have turned dark. Can they be bleached?

Resins and porcelains do not bleach, but polishing might help. Visit your dentist for advice.

What can I do about bad breath?

Visit your dentist who can ascertain the reason for the bad breath.

Why do my gums bleed when I brush or floss?

You may be suffering from gingivitis or periodontal disease. Please visit your dentist as soon as possible.

My gums are receding. What can be done?

This can be rectified by doing a gum graft, normally utilizing gum from the palate or a synthetic material to cover the root surface.

Too much gum is visible when I smile. What can be done?

A gum lift or aesthetic crown lengthening can be performed in one single visit.

DENTAL IMPLANTS


What is a bone graft?

Bone grafts are used to fill bony defects, provide structural support, and build up deficient areas of the jaw when bone loss occurs. For example, it is sometimes necessary to rebuild the bone by using a bone graft prior to placing dental implants or dentures. There are different types of grafting materials available to treat various conditions. Consult with your doctor for the options that will be best for treating your case.

Why do I need a bone graft?

Doctors usually recommend a bone graft when there is not enough bone available to place a dental implant or dentures. This typically occurs as a result of bone resorption that takes place when teeth are not present. Bone grafting procedures restore bone that has been lost due to resorption. This type of procedure is common for many implant patients.

I am missing all the teeth in my upper/lower jaw. What are my options?

If you are missing all of your teeth in the upper and/or lower jaw and currently use a removable full denture, then an implant-supported denture could be the right solution for you. Unlike removable full dentures which can fit poorly, cause gum irritation and pain from exposed nerves, implant-supported bridges or dentures virtually eliminate slipping and movement, so there's no pain, no embarrassment, and no worries. You'll be able to laugh and speak with confidence, and enjoy your favourite foods with ease.

Experience new freedom with an implant-supported bridge or denture.

  • Maintains integrity of facial structure (helps prevent further bone deterioration)*
  • Increases comfort and stability
  • Restores a more secure biting ability than a removable denture
  • Eliminates need for adhesives
  • Improves appearance (lost lip support restored)
  • Builds confidence in eating and speaking more clearly
*Claims based on previous studies and case reports

Traditional treatment option:

Removable Full Denture

Removable Full Denture with no attachment for denture stability.

Dental implant options:

Dental implants are the most effective way to retain and support a complete denture, especially a lower one. Poorly fitting dentures were found to affect not only the ability to chew and speak, but also patients' self esteem. Two to four dental implants with attachments or a bar keep the denture firmly in place, enhancing your quality of life and enabling you to eat, laugh and smile with confidence at any situationImplant-Retained Denture

Implant-Retained Denture provides a removable, stable denture. Dental implants are the most effective way to retain and support a complete denture, especially a lower one. Poorly fitting dentures were found to affect not only the ability to chew and speak, but also patients' self esteem. Two to four dental implants with attachments or a bar keep the denture firmly in place, enhancing your quality of life and enabling you to eat, laugh and smile with confidence at any situation

Patients with a completely edentulous jaw can now avoid the hassle associated with removable dentures. Supported by eight or more implants, a fixed restoration (a bridge) is the ultimate solution for those who wish to improve their chewing ability and enjoy better quality of life.Implant-Supported Denture

Fixed Implant-Supported Denture provides the patient with a non-removable, stable dentition. Patients with a completely edentulous jaw can now avoid the hassle associated with removable dentures. Supported by eight or more implants, a fixed restoration (a bridge) is the ultimate solution for those who wish to improve their chewing ability and enjoy better quality of life.

Before and after clinical example:

Before Dental ImplantsBefore implant placement, denture patient is missing all teeth and losing bone.
Before Dental ImplantsAfter implant placement, the patient has stable, restored dentition with function and aesthetics.
*Clinical slides provided by Dr. Scott Ganz and Dr. Mark Adams.

I am missing more than one tooth. What are my options?

If you are missing multiple teeth, then an implant-supported bridge may be the cosmetic dentistry solution for you. Unlike traditional bridgework or removable partial dentures that can slip, come loose, and cause irritation, an implant-supported bridge stays secure and strong, and won't cause problems for your adjacent teeth. So comfortable and natural, they'll look and feel just like your own teeth.

Experience new comfort and stability with an implant-supported bridge.

  • Looks, feels and performs like your natural teeth
  • Does not compromise adjacent teeth to support a bridge
  • Preserves surrounding bone (replaces tooth root)*
  • Bridge attaches securely to implants
  • Prevents bone collapse and jaw line recession*
  • Restores a more secure biting ability than a removable denture
  • Eliminates recurrent wear around prepared teeth
  • Improves appearance and self-esteem
*Claims based on previous studies and case reports

Traditional treatment option:

Removable Partial Denture

A removable partial denture can lead to further bone and tooth loss.

Dental implant option:

When few adjacent teeth are missing or badly damaged, multiple dental implants may be placed to support an implantsupported bridge. This advantageous alternative avoids the hassle involved with the use of partial dentures. It makes the use of metallic clasps unnecessary, resulting in better esthetics, and causes no harm to adjacent teeth. The result is a more convenient solution that enhances quality of life while keeping your teeth healthy.Implant-Supported Bridge

An implant restoration will maintain your surrounding bone and soft tissue, as well as replace your missing teeth with natural-looking implants. When few adjacent teeth are missing or badly damaged, multiple dental implants may be placed to support an implant supported bridge. This advantageous alternative avoids the hassle involved with the use of partial dentures. It makes the use of metallic clasps unnecessary, resulting in better aesthetics, and causes no harm to adjacent teeth. The result is a more convenient solution that enhances quality of life while keeping your teeth healthy.

Before and after clinical example:

Before ImplantsBefore implant placement, the space in the patient's mouth often prevents correct function and can be visually displeasing to the patient.
After ImplantsAfter implant placement, function and esthetics are restored to the patient.

*Clinical slides provided by Dr. Philippe Russe.

I am missing a single tooth. What are my options?

There are several different types of implants to fit your individual case. If you are missing a single tooth and currently use a removable partial denture or tooth-supported crown, an implant-supported crown may be a better alternative. Single tooth replacements look and feel so natural, typically only you and your practitioner will know the difference.

Implant-supported crowns are a naturally better solution.

  • Looks, feels and performs similar to your natural tooth
  • Does not compromise your adjacent teeth to support a bridge
  • Preserves surrounding bone (replaces tooth root)*
  • Prevents bone collapse and jaw line recession*
  • Oral care is the same as a natural tooth
  • Restores a more secure biting ability than a removable denture
  • Restores self-confidence and appearance
*Claims based on previous studies and case reports

Traditional treatment options:

Tooth-Supported Crown

An alternative treatment is to cut down adjacent good teeth to support a bridge to hold the missing tooth.

Removable Partial Denture

A removable partial denture can lead to further bone and tooth loss.

Dental implant option:

If you need to replace just one tooth, an implant may be a more effective alternative to traditional bridge work. A standard bridge work requires cutting down adjacent teeth to support the new bridge. The supporting teeth become more susceptible to caries, and may eventually be lost too. A dental implant not only preserves bone and gum tissues but also avoids cutting down neighboring teeth, allowing their longer and healthier life span.Implant-Supported Crown

An implant restoration will maintain your surrounding bone and soft tissue, and replace your missing tooth with a natural-looking restoration. If you need to replace just one tooth, an implant may be a more effective alternative to traditional bridge work. A standard bridge work requires cutting down adjacent teeth to support the new bridge. The supporting teeth become more susceptible to caries, and may eventually be lost too. A dental implant not only preserves bone and gum tissues but also avoids cutting down neighboring teeth, allowing their longer and healthier life span.

Before and after clinical example:

Before Implant placementBefore implant placement, there is an unsightly space in the patient's mouth.
After Implant placementAfter implant placement, function and aesthetics are restored to the patient.

*Clinical slides provided by Dr. Philippe Russe

 

What is involved in the implant procedure?

The dental implant process involves several steps that take place over a time period that averages from 3 to 6 months.

How long do dental implants last?

They should last a lifetime. However, we all can sight examples where teeth have not served for a person's lifetime. We know that dental problems mostly stem from improper home care or lack of treatment when needed. The same holds true for implants. With proper care and routine dental check-ups they should last a lifetime. No one can give guarantees because the health of a person is dependent upon many factors which are out of the control of one's dentist, e.g., proper nutritional needs being met, proper hygiene, genetics, disease processes which might occur. So, the answer to this question really is that no one knows how long each individual implant will last... one's success can be influenced by the way you live and the quality of practitioner that you have chosen to do your implants... these things can tip the scales in your favour.

What are the benefits of dental implants?

Choosing dental implants as a treatment option can offer you a number of significant advantages.
  • They replace missing teeth. If you have missing teeth, the bone begins to shrink over time. Unhealthy bone loss can make your jaw line recede and change your facial structure. Dental implants can help prevent deterioration of the jawbone so your face retains its natural shape.
  • Dental implants look more natural than other prosthodontic solutions. A better long-term alternative to bridgework, dental implants eliminate the need to grind down healthy teeth when replacing one or more adjacent teeth. Your own natural healthy teeth are not compromised.
  • Dental implants allow for a more natural chewing action. Securely anchored dental implants do not slip or move. This eliminates some of the key problems of dentures, including poor fit, gum irritation and pain from exposed nerves. The result is superior comfort, reliability, and freedom from embarrassment.

How do dental implants work?

A dental implant is a small "anchor" made of titanium that is inserted into the jawbone to take the place of your missing tooth root. After osseointegration (when the surrounding bone has healed to the implant), a replacement tooth is secured to the top of the implant. This new tooth looks, feels and performs similar to your natural teeth.

How do I know if I am a good candidate for implants?

Please consult your dentist or cosmetic dentistry specialist. You can email Dr Steyn for an appointment at: jpsteynadmin@iafrica.com.

What are dental implants?

Dental implants are a safe, medically proven, aesthetic alternative to traditional crowns, bridgework, and dentures. Because implant restorations look and feel more like natural teeth, they offer new levels of comfort, security and confidence over traditional treatments. They are titanium devices used to support restorations that look like a tooth or group of teeth. These are placed within the jaw. The jaw then fuses, or Osseo integrates, with the implant. Dental implants can be used to support crowns, bridges and dentures. Implants are more efficient than traditional bridges, as the surrounding teeth are not used to support them, and are thus unaffected, damaged or stressed.

BLEACHING AND WHITENING


What can I do if I smoke to whiten my teeth?

Whitening your teeth will help, but the effect will not last as long as it would if you did not smoke.

I have one dark tooth in the front. Will regular at-home bleaching make it lighter?

External bleaching may not help. Internal bleaching may be the solution if the tooth has had the nerve removed (root canal treatment). If not, consider porcelain veneering, or capping the tooth to mask the darkness.

My old fillings in the front have turned dark. Can they be bleached?

Resins and porcelains do not bleach, but polishing might help. Visit your dentist for advice.

What is tooth whitening?

Tooth whitening, or bleaching, is a cosmetic dentistry procedure where a bleach is applied to the tooth enamel, lightening the teeth. It can be done chairside, or in your own home. Dr Steyn offers a take home solution. Please read more about it here.

How can I get my teeth to look whiter?

Visit your oral hygienist to get your teeth properly cleaned and polished. Your dentist can then evaluate what steps can be taken to brighten your smile. Just the removal of superficial staining may be enough. Tooth whitening, or bleaching of teeth can also give great results.

CROWNS AND BRIDGES


I have dark fillings. What can be done to make them less noticeable?

Your fillings could be replaced with porcelain inlay/onlays, or if recommended crowns. This cosmetic dentistry solution will match the natural colour of your teeth.

My teeth are irregular, what can I do?

Cosmetic contouring, porcelain laminate veneers, orthodontics, or crowns can be used to correct this.

I have a gap between my front teeth. What can be done?

Orthodontics is the best way (multiple visits). Also: Porcelain laminate veneers (two visits) or crowns (two visits). The treatment will depend on the individual patient.

I have a missing tooth, what are my options?

An implant or a crown on the implant as placed in the area, or a fixed bridge.

How long will a crown last?

The average crown has a lifespan of around 10 years, but can last for much longer. This is affected by oral hygiene habits, as well as the usage and the severity of the bite.

What are the benefits of crowns?

Many people have unexplained pain from filled back teeth, which is usually due to hairline cracks in the chewing part of the tooth. Placing crowns on these teeth relieves the pain and allows a return of full dental function for these teeth. In front teeth, older fillings can both weaken the teeth and cause aesthetical issues due to staining or chipping. In teeth with root canal fillings, crowns can prevent breakage.

How long does it take to fit a crown?

Fitting a crown usually requires up to three visits to the surgery. During the first visit the tooth will be prepared by having decay removed and shaped. A temporary crown will be fitted. The temporary crown will be removed on the next visit, and a "try-in" of the crown will be done. The final crown will be fitted and adjusted. It will then be cemented into place at the final visit.

What is a cap or a crown?

Dental crowns (caps) are laboratory produced restorations that envelope the entire tooth. They are cemented, or bonded to the tooth for a natural appearance. Typically these are used to improve the appearance of fractured or decayed teeth. Crowns can be made of gold and other metals, resin, porcelain fused to metal, and all ceramic. Crowns require that some of the structure of the tooth to be removed in order to allow adequate space for the restorative material. Because crowns cover the whole tooth, they often provide better solutions for more severe dental problems.

Can I still bleach my teeth if some are crowns or caps?

Yes, however only the teeth will whiten, not the crowns. The crowns can be replaced and matched to the desired colour once bleaching is done.

I have one dark tooth in the front. Will regular at-home bleaching make it lighter?

External bleaching may not help. Internal bleaching may be the solution if the tooth has had the nerve removed (root canal treatment). If not, consider porcelain veneering, or capping the tooth to mask the darkness.

Too much gum is visible when I smile. What can be done?

A gum lift or aesthetic crown lengthening can be performed in one single visit.

DENTURES AND FALSE TEETH


What are the alternatives to dentures?

Dental implants can be used to support permanently cemented bridges, eliminating the need for a denture. The cost is usually greater, but the implants and bridges more closely resemble the feel of real teeth.

What are the limitations of dentures?

  • New dentures can cause pain as they compress the mucosa (soft tissue) of the mouth. This is usually taken care of by a few adjustments.
  • Gagging is another problem encountered by a minority of patients.
  • Sometimes there could be a gingivitis under the full dentures, which is caused by accumulation of dental plaque.
  • One of the most common problems for new full upper denture wearers is the loss of taste.
  • Dentures over a normal course of time will wear and need to be replaced or relined in order to keep the jaw alignment normal. The alignment will slowly change as the bone and gum ridges recede or shrink due to the extraction of the teeth.

What are the benefits of dentures?

  • Chewing ability is improved by replacing gaps with denture teeth.
  • The presence of teeth improve the appearance of the face, as well as providing support for cheeks and lip. A "sunken" appearance can be avoided.
  • Pronunciation of some sounds and general speech is improved.
  • Self-esteem is improved.

How long does it take to get dentures?

The process usually takes between three and six weeks and a few appointments. Once Dr Steyn has decided the best solution for you, he will:
  • Make a series of impressions of your jaw and take measurements of how your jaws relate to one another and how much space is between them.
  • Create models, wax forms, and/or plastic patterns in the exact shape and position of the denture to be made. You will "try in" this model several times and the denture will be assessed for colour, shape, and fit before the final denture is processed.

What are complete dentures?

Complete, or full dentures are worn by patients who have lost all of the teeth in a single arch - the maxillary (upper) or mandibular (lower) arch.

What are partial dentures?

Removable partial dentures, or bridges, consist of replacement teeth attached to a gum-coloured plastic base, which is connected by metal framework that holds it in place in the mouth. These can be used when there are one or more teeth that remain in the jaw. A fixed (permanent) bridge replaces one or more teeth by placing crowns on the teeth on either side of the space and attaching artificial teeth to them. This is then cemented into place. This not only fills in the spaces created by missing teeth, it also prevents the remaining teeth from changing their position.

What are dentures?

Dentures (also known as false teeth) are removable prosthetic devices for missing teeth and the surrounding tissues that are inserted in the mouth and provide support for your cheeks and lips. Most dentures are made of acrylic, and the teeth of plastic, porcelain or a combination of both. Both complete and partial dentures are available. Complete dentures are used when all the teeth are missing, while partial dentures are used when some natural teeth remain. Dentures can be used to replace missing teeth on the mandibular arch (lower jaw) or the maxillary arch (upper jaw). An upper denture has acrylic, usually flesh coloured “plate” that covers the palate (roof of the mouth). A lower denture is shaped like a horseshoe to leave room for your tongue.

INLAYS AND ONLAYS


I have dark fillings. What can be done to make them less noticeable?

Your fillings could be replaced with porcelain inlay/onlays, or if recommended crowns. This cosmetic dentistry solution will match the natural colour of your teeth.

VENEERS


My teeth are irregular, what can I do?

Cosmetic contouring, porcelain laminate veneers, orthodontics, or crowns can be used to correct this.

I have a gap between my front teeth. What can be done?

Orthodontics is the best way (multiple visits). Also: Porcelain laminate veneers (two visits) or crowns (two visits). The treatment will depend on the individual patient.

How long do veneers last?

Veneers can last for decades if properly maintained.

What is the difference between bonding and porcelain laminate veneers?

Bonding is when a tooth-coloured plastic-resin material is applied to your teeth and shaped by the dentist. This can be done in one visit. Porcelain veneers are wafer-thin layers of life-like porcelain that are then bonded to the surface of teeth to improve their colour and shape. Produced in laboratories, they have enamel-like qualities, similar to natural teeth. A veneer requires at least two visits.

I have one dark tooth in the front. Will regular at-home bleaching make it lighter?

External bleaching may not help. Internal bleaching may be the solution if the tooth has had the nerve removed (root canal treatment). If not, consider porcelain veneering, or capping the tooth to mask the darkness.

ORAL HYGIENE


What can I do about bad breath?

Visit your dentist who can ascertain the reason for the bad breath.

How often should I visit the oral hygienist?

Twice a year is the norm, but every 3-4 months is optimal.

Why do my gums bleed when I brush or floss?

You may be suffering from gingivitis or periodontal disease. Please visit your dentist as soon as possible.

Still haven’t found what you are looking for? Ask us!