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Frequently Asked Questions

General Dentistry

How often should I visit your practice?

For most patients, we recommend twice-yearly visits for cleanings and examinations. If you are currently being treated for a particular concern, we may recommend that you visit us more often.

How often should I brush my teeth?

We recommend that you brush your teeth at least twice daily using good technique. Our skilled dental hygienists will be happy to review your technique with you and give you pointers to help you improve to get the most out of your home-care routine.

Can I go back to work after my appointment?

Excluding nitrous oxide, most forms of sedation dentistry will leave you drowsy and groggy for several hours after your procedure. For this reason, you will need someone to drive you to and from your appointment. We recommend that you do not return to work until the next day.

Can my entire family see you?

We welcome all ages in our practice! We are happy to discuss your scheduling needs, so just give us a call and speak with our friendly front desk staff!

What happens during an examination?

Examinations are an important opportunity for us to check in with you, see how you are doing, and make sure that your teeth are healthy. We want to catch problems when they are small and can be treated easily.

Unfortunately, by the time you are in pain, simple measures are usually no longer effective. Regular examinations allow us to nip this situation in the bud and keep your teeth healthy and beautiful.

Why do I need x-rays?

X-rays are a dentist’s most important diagnostic tool. Often, problems start inside your teeth or beneath the gumline. By the time the problem is visible to the naked eye, it can be painful and more difficult to treat. Using x-rays taken on a regular basis, we can catch problems early and treat them quickly and comfortably.

Are composite fillings better than silver metal fillings?

Composite fillings bond directly to your tooth, which results in less healthy tooth removal. Amalgam (metal) fillings require additional preparation to provide anchors for the solid amalgam.

Composite fillings are not as hard and inflexible as amalgam fillings, which means stresses caused by biting and chewing can be distributed more naturally and reduce the risk of your tooth cracking.

Do tooth-coloured fillings look natural?

Unlike metal fillings, tooth-coloured fillings are a custom-mixed resin composite. The composite mixture is matched to your tooth colour and bonded directly to the tooth. This usually results in a filling that is nearly indistinguishable from your natural tooth.

I brush and floss every day. Why do I need a cleaning?

Even with excellent hygiene habits, it’s easy to miss small areas of your teeth. Over time, the missed plaque will harden into tartar, which can only be removed with a dental hygienist’s tools. When tartar accumulates beneath the gumline, the end result is red, puffy, inflamed gums — the beginnings of periodontal disease.


May St Dental Centre | (08) 9319 2606