Specialist Dental Care Mona Vale
Root Canal & Extractions
Root canal treatment
Root canal treatment is needed for teeth that are not vital, or in other words, there is so much tooth decay that the tooth has lost its vitality.
This means the pulp, which is the innermost layer of the tooth containing the nerve, has died, or is dying. It could be irreversible pulpitis which is where the nerve is very inflamed and it's never going to go back to normal. Sometimes this trauma is so severe that the damaged tooth must be taken out.
The dentist can save the teeth, but to do so they must remove the pulp, and clean and shape the canals, which are different in every tooth. This keeps the area germ-free; in other words it sterilises the area so there is no bacteria that could continue to cause infection or inflammation.
The dentist cleans it out and fills it with a biocompatible root canal filling; this procedure saves the tooth. In some instances, it needs to be followed up with a crown because if you lost quite a lot of tooth when the nerve was taken out it causes the tooth to become brittle which can break or fracture. A crown acts as a cap which helps to stabilise the tooth.
While root canal treatment can feel uncomfortable, it’s not painful as the dentist anesthetises the tooth for the procedure. Gateway Dental Care have a range of suitable anaesthetics for the work they undertake. They also have happy gas which helps with anxiety.
The first thing that may come to mind in relation to tooth extraction is wisdom teeth removal. However the procedure of removing teeth doesn’t just apply to wisdom tooth extraction, any tooth can be extracted.
If it's a back tooth and the patient doesn’t want to spend the money on a root canal, they can ask to just have the tooth taken out. If they’ve lost a lot of bone around the tooth and it's loose or if they have advanced periodontal disease, then the tooth has to come out.
Some other dental clinics don't do their own extractions, but Gateway Dental Care do all their extractions. The only time the dental team refer to a surgeon is if it's complicated, particularly wisdom teeth. Gateway Dental Care do remove wisdom teeth, but if it's really complicated and it poses a lot of risk, they refer the patient to a surgeon.
Implants & Dentures
What is a prosthodontist?
A prosthodontist is a dentist that specialises in dentures, both full and partial dentures. Whether it’s permanent dentures, denture implants, or removable dentures, the Gateway Dental Care team can provide you with the right solution. Prosthodontists do both dentures as well as dental implants. Dr Joanne Evans, principle dentist, has 30 years’ experience doing dentures.
Gateway Dental Care provide a range of prosthetics for your specific dental needs including implants, crowns and tooth bridges, dentures and mouthguards.
Dentures are for patients who are missing teeth and they want a removable prosthesis. The prothesis could be partial or full depending on the patient’s specific needs. For example, someone might have all their teeth missing on the top, so they would get a complete upper denture. Or they might still have some lower teeth, so they can have a chrome denture which is a metal denture with acrylic teeth on it.
Gateway Dental Care provide a whole range of denture options to choose from. Overdentures are when roots are present, or teeth are present, and the dentures go over that. The roots and teeth help to keep the dentures in place.
Dentures aren't just for older people, they are also useful for people who have had accidents through contact sport or other reasons. The dental clinic have seen many younger people with missing teeth, people in their 30’s 40’s with partial dentures.
Dentures are made of acrylic, however are also available in cobalt-chrome. The cobalt-chrome solution is better suited for partial dentures. If it's a full upper denture then acrylic is lighter and cheaper and there’s no need for metal.
Sometimes the dentist will do a metal plate at the top if the patient has had a history of cracking with acrylic; something stronger like cobalt-chrome can be a better option these situations.
Gateway Dental Care provide custom-made sports mouthguards. The dental team recommends getting a custom fit mouthguard if you or your child play any contact sports. When the season starts for soccer, rugby and other sports, kids come into the dental clinic to get fitted for a mouthguard.
The creation of your custom-made mouthguard starts by taking an impression of your teeth. A technician then takes care of the production of the mouthguard. There are different levels of materials that the mouthguard can be made from, which range from lighter to heavy material.
While safety is the number one priority when it comes to mouthguards, you also want to turn up to the sports field in style. Gateway Dental Care can provide a mouth guard in colours that are suited to your team. For example, if your team colours are black and yellow, they can make a black and yellow mouth guard for you.
What's the benefit of custom-made mouthguards?
Custom made mouthguards are better than the store-bought products that mould in your mouth because they won't drop out of your mouth. When you or your child is at risk of injury, you want to provide the best protection available.
No one wants to see their child's teeth knocked out during their sporting match. You want your kids to have fun and enjoy their sport, so remember to always wear a top quality mouthguard.
The team at Gateway Dental Care also provide dental splints to assist with temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ). TMJ is caused by grinding your teeth, misalignment of the jaw or a range of other reasons. Symptoms include headaches, jaw pain and neck pain.
Gateway Dental Care also provide anti-snoring devices for snorers.
If you or a family member has a problem with snoring, a sleep practitioner may inform you that you need a snoring device. This is a splint that goes in your mouth over your upper and lower teeth, and joined together.
When the dentist fits the device, they find the right position which pushes your jaw slightly forward. Instead of your jaw falling back at night and closing up your airway the splint pushes your jaw forward and opens up the airway so you can breathe better and snore less, it reduces the symptoms of sleep apnea.
Custom-Made Anti-Snoring Devices
Just like mouthguards, a snoring device is custom-made to achieve the right fit for you. Gateway Dental Care use the SomnoMed brand of snoring devices, which is a comfortable, high quality and clinically validated product.
Dr Joanne Evans remembers “These kinds of devices have been around for years. I remember doing them in England. They were massive back then and I wondered how people could wear them…these new SomnoMed ones are amazing. Nice and slim, definitely much more wearable.”