Welcome to our Blog

One of the great things about dentistry is being able to enhance patient’s lives so significantly. Allowing people to look better, smile more readily, be free of pain, chew and function normally, live longer and have nice fresh breath for speaking and kissing are just a few of the things we do to improve the lives of everyone we touch. Even the most basic dental procedures are incredibly important – without good dental hygiene and regular cleanings millions more teeth would be lost every year. We hope you enjoy our blog and find the information within useful and sometimes even entertaining.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Is It Time To Replace Your Old Fillings With Composite Fillings?

Spring is here with summer just around the corner!  

With the change in seasons, our thoughts turn to projects like gardening, fixing up the house and maybe even renovations.  If you are in the mindset for sprucing things up, it might be an ideal time to think about refreshing your smile.

A simple and effective way to “touch up” your smile is by replacing any amalgam (also known as silver or mercury) fillings you have with white ones.  Not only do amalgam fillings look dark and unnatural, they present another issue that is of even greater concern.  Amalgams are typically not bonded to the tooth structure and are placed in a considerably weakened tooth due to decay removal and requirement for a larger preparation to accommodate the material.  The metals in amalgam fillings also expand and contract as you eat hot and cold foods at a rate higher than that of your natural teeth.  This expansion and contraction over the life of the filling creates cracks in teeth, making them weaker, and can eventually lead to a portion of your tooth breaking off... usually when you least expect it!    Composite fillings look natural and they expand and contract at a rate much closer to that of  your natural tooth.  These fillings are also bonded to the tooth structure, restoring the tooth back to 90 - 95% of its original strength.

If you’re embarrassed by your old fillings and tired of hiding your smile, ask us about composite fillings.

What are Composite or White Fillings? 
Composite fillings (or white fillings) are made of a porcelain-like material that bonds to the tooth for a tight seal. They are strong, stain-resistant, and colour-matched to the natural tooth, making them essentially ‘invisible’.

Before Amalgams Removed
How are fillings done?
In filling teeth, areas of decay and old filling material are removed and replaced with a composite restorative material.  A local anaesthetic is most often administered to numb the area and make for a comfortable, positive experience.

After Composites Completed
Why do I need fillings?
Once a cavity starts, it continues to spread into the deeper parts of the tooth affecting the pulp leading to nerve damage and may even result in an abscess.  In the process, it destroys the tooth structure making the tooth weaker and possibly resulting in a fracture.  Early treatment is less painful, less expensive and preserves more tooth structure.

Should I change my amalgam fillings to white fillings?
If aesthetics is a major concern, then you should discuss with your dental professional the best options for replacement of your amalgams with either composites or porcelain restorations.  

Remember that the presence of mercury in amalgams alone is not considered a sufficient reason by the dental community to replace them.  However, amalgam was first used as a filling material for teeth as early as the mid 1800's and has not changed much in formulation since then.  There are far better materials available to us in dentistry today.  When was the last time you used something that has not advanced technologically in the last 150 years?  If it appears that the tooth structure is significantly compromised by large amalgam restorations, it may be in your best interest to take preventive measures and replace them before a larger problem presents itself.  

If you are concerned about your amalgam fillings, feel free to discuss this with us.

Your smile will thank you!

Photos taken at Acreview Dental Clinic with permission of participant.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Don’t Believe Everything You Hear!

Here’s an interesting quiz for you.

Who originally dispensed the famous recommendation to “see your dentist twice a year?”

We all know it’s true (or do we???) – so when and where do you think that bit of advice originated?

 a)      The American Dental Association in 1933
 b)      The world’s first dental college – The University of Maryland School of Dentistry in 1845
 c)      An article in The Journal of Oral Surgery by Dr. Henry Horseacre in 1909 entitled “Proper
         Protocol for Dental Cleanings.”
 d)     A radio ad for Pepsodent Toothpaste in 1929

Believe it or not, if you guessed “d” you are correct!

Most of us know the famous order to “see your dentist twice a year.” Some insurance companies even use that interval to define their standards for payment. But the fact is that phrase was developed with no scientific basis at all – and to sell toothpaste!

Another example of this logic was the ad campaign for Pear’s Soap in the late 1800s. The slogan “Have you used Pear’s soap today” ushered in the habit of daily bathing! And while that was certainly a good thing, the fact is that we are all different and to expect that everyone requires the same schedule for their health needs just doesn’t make sense.

When you wash your hair, do you “rinse and repeat?” Do you associate diamonds with engagement rings? Are you convinced that Volvo builds the safest cars? If so, you’ve been influenced by advertising, not necessarily facts. Don’t worry – we are all guilty of it!

At Acreview Dental Clinic, we don’t believe in a cookie cutter approach when your health is involved. In order to determine the correct dental treatment for you (including how often you should have your teeth cleaned) we perform a thorough examination, checking your teeth, gums, medical history, bite, jaw muscles and more. We even do an oral cancer screening at every check-up.

Everyone is different, so despite what the ad men from Pepsodent once said, let’s scientifically determine the correct schedule for your dental visits by looking at the facts, not an ad slogan. Then you can look forward to a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums – and keep smiling forever!

If you have any questions or you would like to schedule a visit, please call (250) 338-9085.
We are here to help you!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

A Confident Smile

Did you know that your smile is one of the first things
that people notice about you? 

Ray Shares his positive experience at Acreview Dental Clinic...

Here are the top three things that men and women notice about each other.

What WOMEN notice first...
  1. Smile
  2. Eyes
  3. Clothing
What MEN notice first...
  1. Eyes
  2. Smile
  3. Body

Does your smile needs a little brightening?

Stain and discolouration can dampen your smile.  There are many different stain removers available.  Most over-the-counter products are unable to deliver the results consumers are expecting.  Depending on the type and source of staining, some products won't work at all while others offer a temporary solution.

Surface stains are caused by strong discolouring agents such as coffee, tea and tobacco.  If these are the unsightly stains you wish to remove, a professional polishing with a coarse but gentle cleaning paste will do the trick.  Along with regular brushing and flossing, this will ensure a longer lasting bright smile.

Some stains are harder to remove because they are trapped in tiny fractures in the tooth surface.  These micro cracks are so small they don't become visible until they get stained by food or tobacco.  The only way to beat these stains is with professional whitening or bonding, a treatment that fills in and covers micro cracks with a tooth-colored material.

Even darker surface stains are caused by dark plaque and tartar buildup in areas around the gumline, often on the lower front teeth.  An in-office technique called scaling, performed by your hygienist, will assist in removing these especially difficult stains.

The toughest stains are the kind that become part of the tooth structure.  Bright white splotches on, or brownish gray bands across the teeth can be caused by faulty hardening of the tooth before birth or by tetracycline treatment.  You can also develop deep stains from decay and from old fillings.  Only professional whitening and masking techniques will revive smiles that have been dulled by the very toughest of stains.

Consult a Dental Professional

Almost anyone can benefit from teeth whitening.  Of course, there are many reasons for discolouration and not everyone will experience the same results.  That's why it is important to involve a dental professional.  There are many factors that play into what kind of whitening is right for you, and a dental professional will help you achieve the best results possible.

For more information on professional whitening or to schedule your regular hygiene appointment, please give us a call at (250) 338-9085 and one of our receptionists will be happy to assist you.