FAQs

Tooth brushing can begin as soon as your child’s teeth start to come through the gums. This will generally be around 6 to 9 months of age. You can start with a soft cloth wrapped around your finger and then move to a soft toothbrush. We are happy to advise and train you for this step in your caring for baby.

It is important that children go to the dentist to keep their teeth healthy and understand the importance of dental care in oral hygiene. For some children going to the dentist can be a scary experience. Often the fear is as a result of hearing adults talking about their fear or bad experiences. It is important to talk to your child in a positive and calm manner about a visit to the dentist.

Taking your child to the dentist as early as possible helps avoid fear of the dentist and familiarises them to the dentist’s surroundings and procedures. Role playing a visit with your child, and explaining to them what they will see when they go into the room and what the dentist does may help if they are scared.

Setting a date and telling your child when they are going will enable the child to mentally prepare for the visit. It is important to let the dental team know about your child’s emotional ability to cope with the visit.

It is important to wear a mouthguard during contact sports such as rugby, soccer, hockey, basketball, baseball, gymnastics and volleyball. Mouthguards protect you against broken teeth and injuries to the lips, tongue, face and jaw.

Millwater Dental can provide state-of-the-art custom-made athletic mouthguards. These are made to your individual requirements so that they are comfortable to wear and protect you appropriately.

A custom-made mouthguard offers better fit and protection than a mouthguard bought over the counter. Talk to us about getting a custom-made mouthguard.

Firstly call our office ASAP! If you can see a dentist within 30 minutes of the incident, there is an 85% chance that the tooth will survive.

If you have lost a tooth you should follow these steps:

  • Find it.
  • Handle it very delicately, and do not touch the fragile root as it will be need to be intact to encourage re-attachment.
  • Do not clean your tooth off with water.
  • If the tooth is clean, place it gently back into its socket immediately and apply slight pressure.
  • If the tooth is dirty, rinse it using milk and place it back into its socket.
  • If you cannot clean it or put it back in its socket keep the tooth moist by placing it in a glass of milk or tuck it into your cheek until you can visit your dentist.

Smoking not only does long term damage to your lungs, it can also do long term damage to your teeth, gums and tongue.

Smoking can lead to discolouration, the staining of teeth and bad breath. It can also lead to an increased build up of plaque, tooth decay and can make gum disease get worse faster. Smoking make your gums pull away from your teeth which can lead to losing teeth.

Seek help to quit smoking today. Click here for details

As good as fizzy drinks may taste, overconsumption is bad for your teeth. Fizzy drinks contain a lot of sugar and the gas that makes them fizzy is acidic. The sugar in them reacts with the natural bacteria in your mouth, promoting decay as well as eroding tooth enamel. We recommend consuming fizzy drinks in moderation and rinsing you mouth immediately after drinking.

Healthy mouth is a gateway to healthy body. Fresh breath is a sign of healthy mouth.

Bad breath or halitosis can be embarrassing and can make you self-conscious. It is caused when the millions of bacteria in our mouths get out of control. Plaque, tartar, gum disease, tooth decay, dentures and your tongue are all places where bacteria can thrive.

The following tips along with regular brushing and flossing will help eliminate bad breath:

  • Brush your tongue – around 80% of oral bacteria live on the tongue. Brush it daily with a soft toothbrush.
  • Use breath fresheners and mouthwash as directed.
  • Have regular dental check-ups and professional cleaning. Book an appointment with Millwater Dental to get your teeth professionally cleaned.
  • Talk to us about the possible cause of your bad breath. We can help isolate and fix it.

Tooth decay starts as the destruction of the outer layer of the tooth (the enamel). It is caused as a result of a thin sticky bacteria layer (plaque) developing over the surface of the teeth. The plaque uses the food we eat and drink to produce acid which softens and dissolves tooth enamel and a cavity is formed.

Tooth enamel does not contain any nerves, so you won’t feel the decay. It is only when a cavity is in its advanced stages that you will you feel sensitivity and then pain. This pain will occur when you eat or drink anything, particularly hot, cold, sugary or acidic.

Regular check-ups with your dentist will help identify any early tooth decay and prevent cavities from becoming painful.

Wisdom teeth are the last teeth to develop and appear in your mouth. For most people they appear between the ages of 18 and 25.

Extraction of wisdom teeth is often recommended if they affect other teeth, or get stuck or wedged in – often referred to as coming in sideways or impacted wisdom teeth. This is usually the result of not enough room in the jaw for the tooth, or because of their abnormal position.

Early extraction by an oral health specialist will help to eliminate problems.

Normal recovery from tooth extraction is a few days. Follow our tips below to help minimise discomfort, reduce the risk of infection, and speed recovery.

Our tips for after extraction care:

  • Take any painkillers you are prescribed as directed.
  • Apply pressure with the gauze placed by your dentist in your mouth for 30 minutes. This allows a blood clot to form which promotes the healing process.
  • Ice bags applied to the affected area immediately after the procedure help to keep down swelling. Apply ice intermitently and for not more then 10 minutes at a time.
  • We recommend you rest for at least 24 hours after the extraction and limit physical activity for the next day or two.
  • Do not rinse or spit forcefully for 24 hours after the extraction – doing so may dislodge the clot in your socket.
  • After 24 hours, rinse your mouth with a solution made of 1/2 teaspoon salt in a glass of warm water.
  • Avoid drinking from a straw for the first 24 hours.
  • If possible, avoid smoking as this can inhibit the healing process.
  • We recommend you eat soft, cool foods. Soup, smoothies (without bits), ice cream, puddings, yoghurt and stewed apple on the day after the extraction are good options. As the gum heals you can gradually add solid foods.
  • Prop your head up with pillows. Lying flat may prolong bleeding.
  • When you are brushing your teeth avoid the extraction site. This will help prevent infection.

At Millwater Dental we usually recommend an annual check-up. Regular check-ups allow us to detect and monitor any changes in your teeth and early treatment avoiding more extensive and costly work later.

Our dentists will determine the appropriate interval between visits based on your mouth, teeth and gums. In some cases we may recommend to see you more frequently.

Removal of plaque by flossing, brushing and regular check-ups and scaling with your dentist will help to minimise your risk of gum disease. For some people there are other factors that can affect the health of their gums. Common conditions include medication, stress, diabetes, heart disease, genetics and pregnancy.

The good news is that brushing and flossing regularly are the first steps to eliminating bad breath. This helps to remove the bacteria sitting around the teeth and the sulphurous compounds they produce.

Bacteria also sits on the tongue under a layer of mucous where it creates odours. To reduce bad breath you can brush your tongue daily or consider using a soft tongue scraper. Both work well at removing the protective mucous layer from the back of the tongue and reducing bad breath.

There are also a number of new products on the market including toothpastes and mouthwashes to neutralise the odorous sulphurous compounds, instead of simply covering up the odour.

Talk to your dentist if you would like any advice on this.

It is not uncommon for teeth to develop cracks. Cracked tooth syndrome is usually the result of trauma, grinding, clenching, decay or heavily filled teeth. The syndrome relates to a variety of symptoms and signs caused by a crack or many cracks in a tooth.

Common symptoms you have a cracked tooth syndrome include:
•    Sharp or intense pain upon chewing or after release of biting pressure although not all cracks cause pain
•    Sensitivity to temperature changes eg. hot food/drinks or sugary food
•    Some difficulty in pinpointing which tooth hurts, either upper or lower

Early intervention can stop or slow down the cracking and improves the chances of saving a cracked tooth. Talk to us about how we can help.

The latest research shows that gum disease can affect the heart muscle, joints, the internal digestive organs and in women the unborn child. The bacteria in gum disease can affect other parts and organs in the body by entering the bloodstream and influencing the behavior of tissues and organs.

Researchers and experts believe that there is an association between periodontal diseases and other chronic inflammatory conditions, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and Alzheimer’s disease.

The importance of treating gum disease may not only help you keep your teeth, mouth and gums healthy but may also help with the management of other chronic inflammatory conditions.

Annual dental checkups and dental cleanings during pregnancy are not only safe, but are recommended.

The rise in pregnancy hormones causes the gums to swell, bleed and trap food causing them increased irritation. The consequences of ignoring oral infections can include preterm birth.  We believe that the treatment of gum disease during pregnancy outweighs the possible risks.