introduction

Today, how you look is more a matter of choice than genes and it is no different when considering your choice of smile.

We all want healthy teeth and gums, fresh breath and the confidence and comfort to choose whatever we would like to eat. But we also want to smile freely, with poise and the assurance that our smile does what it is meant to do: to present and represent us; to be an attractive and welcoming feature. 

Using the latest computer imaging technology we are now able to determine the very best cosmetic solutions, show you the potential results and allow you to choose your ideal smile. You can discuss what you don’t like about your teeth, learn about your options and receive an accurate quote for the treatment involved.

The smile you deserve is only a call away.

 

Braces

Braces - Fixed Appliance

Before placing braces on your teeth you will need a check-up for decay or gum problems. Do visit your dentist or the School Dental Clinic regularly, even when you are on braces.

Braces can be fixed or removable.

Fixed braces consist of brackets and bands bonded or cemented to your teeth (to get a hold of them) and very thin metal wires that gently push your teeth into their right positions.

The wire is tied into the brackets with a steel ligature or a coloured plastic ring. Some brackets have clips to hold the wires and no ties are needed. Brackets can be made of metal or tooth-coloured ceramic or plastic. Ordinary fixed braces are bonded to the front of your teeth. There are also braces that can be bonded on the back of your teeth (lingual braces).

Removable braces are sometimes used when you are still growing or if you still have baby teeth left. Functional removable braces are used to change jaw growth to normalise your bite.

Steps in Fixed Braces Treatment

First Visit:
X-rays, photos and impressions for plaster study models of your teeth are taken. Your orthodontist will plan your treatment using these records. Very often, permanent teeth are removed when they are crowded and there is not enough space in the jaws for all of them. The extractions are done just before or just after the fitting of your braces.

Second Visit:
Your orthodontist will explain the treatment plan and the braces suitable for your condition. Before braces are fitted, separators (small plastic  ‘doughnuts’) are placed between your molars for a week to create spaces for the molar bands.

Third and Fourth Visits:
Bands are cemented and brackets are bonded to the front of your teeth.

Subsequent Visits:
(Every 4 to 8 weeks) Adjustments are made to the braces by way of wire-changes, adding springs, elastics or other accessories.

NOTE: Accessories are necessary to make your braces work. Elastics are often used to get your upper and lower teeth to bite together properly. Facemasks, headgear or biteplates are sometimes used with fixed braces. It is very important to use all accessories exactly as you have been told, if not, progress of the treatment stops and may in some cases, reverse.

 

Composite Fillings

Most people have fillings of one sort or another but today, because we are much more conscious of our smile, we can choose a natural looking alternative - the composite or tooth-coloured filling.

A composite resin is a tooth-coloured plastic mixture filled with glass (silicon dioxide) first introduced in the 1960s. Originally only used for front teeth because of their softer nature, modern improvements to their composition make them generically suitable today.

Composite fillings are more difficult to place than silver fillings so may take your dentist 15-20 minutes longer to complete and because they are considered to be a cosmetic treatment, they are not available on the NHS and must be paid for.

The main advantage of composite fillings is their aesthetic appeal. The main disadvantage is their life expectancy. White fillings have always been considered less long lasting than silver amalgam fillings but there are now new materials available with properties comparable to silver amalgam, and these are proving to be very successful. The life expectancy of your composite filling can depend on the depth of cavity and its position in the mouth; your dentist is best positioned to advise you.

 

Crowns

What is a crown?

A crown is a cap that is placed over a tooth and held in place by dental adhesive or cement.

Crowns are used for several reasons:

  • as a protective cover for badly decayed teeth or fractured teeth
  • as a permanent restoration for teeth with large fillings
  • to correct minor problems in natural teeth like spacing and irregular shape or severe discolouration.

What are crowns made from?

Crowns can be made from a variety of materials.  They can be made from plastic, ceramic or metal alloys.  A combination of metal and ceramic is also possible to maximise strength and simulate the appearance of natural teeth.

How are crowns made?

Firstly, a thorough clinical examination is conducted with radiographs, by the dentist.  The suitability for crowns is assessed and any preparatory work is carried out.  Your dentist will also be able to advise on material choices, treatment sequence and any other concerns you may have.

At the second appointment, the teeth to be crowned are prepared. This involves reduction of the tooth size (usually under local anaesthesia) followed by an impression or mould of the prepared tooth.  This trimming of the tooth is required to create space for the crown to be fitted.  The mould taken is then sent to a laboratory where skilled technicians will fabricate the crown. In the meantime, a temporary crown is made and fitted onto the trimmed tooth.

At the third appointment, the temporary crown is removed and the tooth surfaces cleaned.  The completed crown is tried on the tooth for fit, harmony with the bite, and appearance.  Finally, the crown is cemented onto the prepared tooth with dental cement.

 

Gold Inlays

Gold inlays are restorations placed usually on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth.

An inlay fits within the confines of the teeth. An onlay covers the entire chewing surface of the tooth. These can be made of either plastic resin or porcelain.

The procedure involves removing decayed tooth structure or old fillings, preparing the tooth cavity, taking an impression of the cavity to fabricate a custom-fit inlay or onlay. Two visits are required to complete the treatment.

 

PORCELAIN INLAYS

Porcelain (tooth coloured) inlays and onlays are restorations placed usually on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth.

An inlay fits within the confines of the teeth. An onlay covers the entire chewing surface of the tooth. These can be made of either plastic resin or porcelain.

The procedure involves removing decayed tooth structure or old fillings, preparing the tooth cavity, taking an impression of the cavity to fabricate a custom-fit inlay or onlay. Two visits are required to complete the treatment.

 

Invisalign Braces

You may have heard about the new ‘invisible brace’ and wondered what it is all about. If you have teeth that are crowded, too far apart or have shifted since wearing conventional braces, invisalign® or Clearstep may give you a new reason to smile!

Because it is nearly invisible almost no one can tell you are wearing invisalign® or Clearstep, so you can smile more during as well as after your treatment. You can remove invisalign and Cleastep aligners so you can eat and drink what you like, and studies have shown that it can be better for your dental hygiene during treatment. With no metal or sharp edges, invisalign® and Clearstep is comfortable to wear and does not cause allergies.

The convenience and ease of use have made it the choice of over half a million people, giving hundreds of thousands of people amazing new smiles.

How does it work ?

Using the latest advances in 3-D computer technology, invisalign®and Clearstep uses your dentist’s instructions to create a series of custom made removable mouth trays (aligners). These aligners apply a controlled amount of force to your teeth, causing them to move. Each aligner is slightly different, moving your teeth gradually into the desired position.

 

Smile Makeover

Just because we’re all grown up doesn’t mean we should miss out on the endless benefits of a sensational smile. Television makeover programmes have shown that an attractive, bright and confident smile is now a matter of choice and not just a right of birth.

Modern dentistry has a solution for all of your oral imperfections; real or imagined. We can now transform a mouth filled with broken, missing, discoloured or uneven teeth and replace silver fillings with a more natural white finish. Everything is possible; it all begins with you seeking your dentist’s advice.

Studies agree that the smile is usually the most important and best-remembered feature when we meet a new person. A smile makeover doesn’t just transform your mouth, it changes your life!

 

Dental Veneers

Veneers are thin, custom-made shells crafted of tooth-coloured materials designed to cover the front side of teeth to improve the overall appearance of teeth. They are made of either thin plastic resin or porcelain and can be placed to:

  • correct poorly formed or mildly mal-positioned teeth
  • close gaps between teeth
  • mask internal stains
  • restore partially broken-down teeth

Tooth preparation is minimal and confined to the enamel structure. The veneer is bonded to the tooth structure with  tooth-coloured resin cement. Several visits are necessary to complete treatment.

Patients should be aware that this is usually an irreversible process because it's necessary to remove a small amount of enamel from your teeth to accommodate the shell.

 

Whitening

Whitening is a process where the tooth discolouration is 'whitened' to a lighter shade. It removes the staining agent through chemical means. It is a safe procedure when carried out under professional supervision. Treatment results usually depend on the severity of the discolouration. Both vital (i.e. live) and non-vital teeth (e.g. tooth with root removed) can be bleached and may take several visits to complete. It is not effective on dental restorations such as amalgam fillings, metal or porcelain crowns, etc.

Teeth can discolour for various reasons. The dentist will recommend the most ideal method based on your oral condition after an in-office examination to establish the cause and nature of your tooth discolouration, as well as provide you with more information on the various types of whitening procedures available, duration & frequency of treatment.