SPECIAL OFFER – WHITENING
Was €349 now €205
Conditions apply (with our Hygienist only)
*Patients must have had a dental check-up within last 12 months (they must furnish evidence of same if not current patient of Portobello Dental Clinic). If new patient and have had full check-up elsewhere they must produce evidence that they are dentally fit.
It depends on the type of gum, and specifically what type of sweetener is used to flavour the gum. Chewing gum that contains sugar is bad for your teeth, whereas sugar-free gum can actually help prevent decay.
The sticky white substance that builds up on your teeth is called plaque, and consists of millions of bacteria. These bacteria need fuel to grow, and their favourite food is sugar (particularly sucrose, the refined sugar in sweets and some chewing gum). When bacteria and sugar combine in the mouth, tooth decay follows!
Chewing sugar-free gum does not provide fuel for the bacteria, and can stimulate saliva flow, which has a protective effect and helps prevent decay. Certain types of sweetener are better than others for prevention of decay – chewing gum that contains xylitol is best.
Xylitol is a naturally occurring carbohydrate that looks and tastes just like regular table sugar. It is a natural sweetener that is extracted from renewable resources such as corn cobs, and as hardwood. Xylitol also occurs naturally in our bodies – in fact, an average size adult manufactures up to 15 grams of xylitol daily during normal metabolism. Pure xylitol is a white crystalline substance that looks and tastes like sugar. Xylitol is more expensive and less widely used that other sweeteners, and so is rarely used in most sugar-free gums. Chewing gum, mints and sweets containing xylitol can be ordered online, xylitol.org offers a resource for more information and links to purchase xylitol products.
An article in the Irish Times on Wed 24th April reported that some Irish patients have contracted Hepatitis C, from traveling overseas for dental and medical procedures. “Cases of hepatitis C have been reported among people who traveled to Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania and South Africa for dental treatment, according to Prof Suzanne Norris, consultant hepatologist at St James’s Hospital.”
We were shocked at Portobello Dental Clinic to hear about this appalling situation, and we would like to take this opportunity to wish all those affected a speedy recovery.
How do I help my children look after their teeth?
Teaching your child, good oral care at a young age is an investment in their health that will stay with them for life. You can start by setting an example, taking good care of your own teeth sends a message that oral health is very important and anything that makes taking care of teeth fun, like brushing along with your child or letting them choose their own toothbrush, encourages good oral care.
To help your children protect their teeth and gums and greatly reduce their risk of getting cavities, teach them to follow these simple steps:
- Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste to remove plaque-the sticky film on teeth that’s the main cause of tooth decay.
- Floss daily to remove plaque from between your teeth and under the gum line, before it can harden into tartar. Once tartar has formed, it can only be removed by a professional cleaning.
- Eat a well-balanced diet that limits starchy or sugary foods, which produce plaque acids that cause tooth decay. When you do eat these foods, try to eat them with your meal instead of as a snack-the extra saliva produced during a meal helps rinse food from the mouth.
- Use dental products that contain fluoride, including toothpaste.
- Take your child to our dentist for regular check-ups.
What Brushing Techniques Can I Show My Child?
You may want to supervise your children until they get the hang of these simple steps:
- Use a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste. Take care that your child does not swallow the toothpaste(this is difficult with very young children-so we recommend using a children’s toothpaste which contains lower levels of fluoride).
- Using a soft-bristled toothbrush, brush the inside surface of each tooth first, where plaque may accumulate most. Brush gently back and forth.
- Clean the outer surfaces of each tooth. Angle the brush along the outer gum line. Gently brush back and forth.
- Brush the chewing surface of each tooth. Gently brush back and forth.
- Use the tip of the brush to clean behind each front tooth, both top and bottom.
- It’s always fun to brush the tongue!
How important is Diet to my child’s Oral Health?
A balanced diet is necessary for your child to develop strong, decay-resistant teeth. In addition to a full range of vitamins and minerals, a child’s diet should include plenty of calcium, phosphorous and proper levels of fluoride. If fluoride is your child’s greatest protection against tooth decay, then frequent snacking may be the biggest enemy. The sugars and starches found in many foods like biscuits, sweets, soft drinks and even some savoury snacks are food for bacteria in dental plaque and are converted to acids. These acids attack the tooth enamel and can lead to cavities.
Each “plaque attack” can last up to 20 minutes after a meal or snack has been finished. Even a little nibble can create plaque acids. So it’s best to limit snacking between meals.
For more info on diet and dental health please see Link to diet advice hyg section
What should I do if my child chips, breaks or knocks out a tooth?
With any injury to your child’s mouth, you should contact Our dentist immediately. Our dentist will want to examine the affected area and determine appropriate treatment.
If your child is in pain from a broken, cracked or chipped tooth, you should visit our dentist immediately. You may want to give an over-the-counter pain reliever to your child until his/her appointment. If possible, keep any part of the tooth that has broken off and take this with you to our dentist.
If a tooth is completely knocked out of the mouth by an injury, take the tooth to your dentist as soon as possible. Handle the tooth as little as possible-do not wipe or otherwise clean the tooth. Store the tooth in a cup of fresh milk (never ever store it in tap water or wash/wipe it clean) until you get to a dentist. It may be possible for the tooth to be placed back into your child’s mouth, a procedure called re-implantation.
What are dental Fissure Sealants and how do I know if my child needs them?
A dental sealant creates a highly effective barrier against decay. Sealants are thin plastic coatings applied to the chewing surfaces of a child’s permanent back teeth, where most cavities form. Applying a sealant is not painful and can be performed in one dental visit. Your dentist can tell you whether your child might benefit from a dental sealant.
For more info on fissure sealants visit Link to fissure sealants hyg page
At what age should my child start Orthodontic Treatment?
This has to be one of the most commonly asked questions by concerned parents. It can be very confusing as when dropping your child off at the school gates, some children are wearing braces and some are not.
The answer is that current studies indicate that there is NO benefit to starting Orthodontic treatment early on your child—all it seems to do is prolong the duration of treatment for them , and the finish date is still roughly the same age.
So, the current recommendations are that Orthodontic treatment should be started while the second baby molar is still present and before the second adult molar comes through–this is roughly around 11-12 years of age.
For more complex cases, where the upper teeth appear more prominent than the lower teeth (buck teeth), treatment is indicated before the pre-teen growth spurt (usually 11.5 yrs for a girl, and 12.5 yrs for a boy).
If your child does not appear to have canine (eye/fang) teeth erupting or palpable, then it has been shown that some benefit may be derived from your dentist electively extracting the baby canines around 10 years of age.
Once treatment starts, your child should have regular dental check-ups, and visits to the hygienist, as their orthodontist will primarily focus on the position of the teeth, and assume that the child is having regular dental examinations with their general dental practitioners.