General dentistry Newcastle

WHEN THINGS GO WRONG

As much as you try to stay cavity free, sometimes things go wrong.

Old fillings wear out or break, you miss brushing or flossing – and you have a cavity. Leave it too long and you may need to have the tooth removed or to have root canal therapy.

We know that even the idea of having a filling can cause anxiety – let alone an extraction or root canal therapy.

Don’t stress. We can’t actually make this fun, but we do our best to make sure you feel calm and stress-free – and leave feeling better than when you arrived. (Hint: It has a lot to do with your blood sugar levels!)

If you’d like, we can even use ‘happy gas’ sedation; just let us know in advance so we can discuss the options.

Composite fillings

What dentists call ‘composite’ is a plastic and glass mixture that’s close to the colour of your natural teeth. Composite fillings are usual now and are great anywhere in your mouth if enough care is taken when placing them.

The new-generation composite resins are strong and its very unlikely you’ll be able to tell them from your natural teeth. The process takes a bit longer than for the older-style amalgam fillings but most patients prefer the result.

With resins, you may experience some sensitivity for a few days as the tooth settles – but we find that is rare nowadays.

Composite fillings won’t last forever but you’ll usually get your money’s worth out of a good composite restoration.

They’re very durable, giving you the beautiful smile you’re after.

Your composite filling will last longer if you practise good oral hygiene, have healthy eating habits and visit us regularly.

‘Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.’

Root canal therapy

We’ve all got one: a friend or relative with a horror story about root canal treatment.

Never fear! It shouldn’t hurt. In fact, it’s not unusual for people to go to sleep while having it done! The worst part is having your mouth open for a long time but a cover fitted over the tooth helps with this. (Remember, we have that ceiling TV to keep you entertained while we’re performing the procedure.) 

When should I have root canal treatment?

We recommend root canal treatment for a tooth that should be kept but has died or is severely inflamed. When your tooth is compromised to such a degree, we can either remove the root and nerves…or extract it completely. Root canal therapy is the less traumatic of the two.

What is a root canal treatment? 

In root canal therapy, we make a small opening to where the tooth’s nerves and blood vessels are. We clean the space, dress it, seal it and cover it with either a filling or a crown.

How many visits do I need for root canal treatment? 

Usually two visits, but could be more or fewer visits depending on the problem.

Amalgam fillings

We don’t use amalgam fillings any more unless it’s the only viable option. It depends on the extent of tooth decay or damage and the location of the tooth. Sometimes, you need the extra strength that amalgam offers.

Amalgam fillings are safe except for a very few circumstances (such as excessive chewing of nicotine gum).

See the Australian Dental Association Fact Sheet on amalgam fillings.

Amalgam Fillings: Removal and replacement

If you have existing amalgam fillings, there’s probably no need to have them removed.

However, should you choose to have your amalgam fillings removed, we can do this safely using a rubber dental dam so you don’t ingest any mercury.

Wisdom teeth extractions

Wisdom teeth can be a nuisance and start to show up around 16 years of age. If they come up properly (or don’t come up at all), you may go through life quite happily with no problems.

If wisdom teeth are half up and getting sore enough that you can’t eat, then that can be a problem.

Check with us for specific advice on your particular situation.

However, you’ll be happy to know we no longer recommend that you remove all your wisdom teeth.

For exceptional care, contact Paul Beath Dental Newcastle today.

If you’d like to book an appointment with Paul Beath Dental, then contact us, or call us in Newcastle on (02) 4961 6300.

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