Category Archives: Cosmetic Dentistry

Benefits of Invisalign v Traditional Braces

Historically, in order to align misaligned teeth various types of treatments like braces or surgery were used. Modern dental technology has now provided us with less invasive and more subtle methods of straightening teeth.

Today braces are not the most popular approach to treating misaligned teeth. Surgery, on the other hand, is not usually used due to its invasiveness and the potential post-surgery side effects. Invisalign is considered as one the best options for patients, as it corrects your teeth permanently without interfering with your appearance like traditional braces or the risks involved with surgery.

There are certain other benefits of Invisalign over braces which are briefly discussed here to help you make the right decision for correcting your misaligned teeth.

Eat What You Want

You have to avoid eating a number of foods, like sweets, chewing gum or popcorn with traditional braces as they can easily stick to your teeth inside the braces. But you can eat anything you want with Invisalign as the alignment tray used in this method can easily be removed when you’re eating.

Easily Removable Device

If you want to remove traditional braces for any reason, then you will have to seek the help of a professional orthodontist. Moreover, the braces cannot be used again once they are removed. But this is not the case with Invisalign, as you can take out the aligners whenever you want and put them in yourself without any problem.

Aesthetically Pleasing

People wearing traditional braces on their teeth often feel embarrassed and may not smile as much as they’d like as they are easily noticeable. But the aligners of Invisalign are not easily noticeable, as they are almost invisible. This is one of the major benefits of Invisalign.

Improvement in Oral Health

Brushing and flossing is difficult with traditional braces, which can lead to patients developing other problems with their dental health during treatment. You can remove the Invisalign trays while cleaning your teeth, allowing you to care for your dental health more efficiently while improving the alignment of your teeth.

Avoid Discomfort and Pain

The metal wires used on traditional braces sometimes can be harmful, as they can cause sores in the mouth resulting in discomfort and pain. Depending on the length of your treatment and the severity of the issue, you may have to bear this discomfort for a long time. But the aligners used with Invisalign are comfortable and pain free as they are made of smooth plastic and are custom printed for your teeth.

While it won’t be available for every patient, Invisalign is a fantastic was of realigning teeth with minimal intrusion on your day to day life.

Emergency Dentist Services – When We Need Them?

Unlike most medical emergencies, dental emergencies in most cases aren’t life-threatening and won’t limit one’s ability to function properly. This is why there’s no clear and exact definition of the term. However, patients often feel pain, abrupt tooth discomfort or tooth loss, and some other circumstances requiring them to seek urgent dental help.

A dental emergency is thus rather patient-defined. It’s up to each person to determine if they have an emergency. For example, you may wake up and feel strong pain in a tooth. The first thing – you grab a Nurofen or a similar painkiller and wait for an hour or two to see if it works. But if it the toothache remains in place or bounces back once the drug effect ends you will seek medical help.

Pain to the area may happen for various reasons. The most common reason is a tooth cavity. You can seek immediate relief in painkillers, but once they stop working pain will be back. You will have to visit a dentist who will fix the issue as soon as possible. Another very common reason for sharp mouth pain is pulp infection. Painkillers often don’t help at all and you have to visit a dentist as soon as possible for root canal treatment and administering an antibiotic drug topically.

Another reason why we would need dental emergency is dental or oral trauma. It happens when your jaws or teeth sustain a mechanical damage. Dental trauma is not uncommon in contact sports, and can even happen in some non-contact sports, especially auto racing, motorbike racing, downhill cycling and similar.

You can, and are often strongly advised to use mouthguard, but sometimes even these can’t help if the pressure from the hit is too strong. Most oral/dental trauma caused by hit requires some form of dental and reconstructive surgery, and sometimes are accompanied with actual medical emergency.

Besides sports, dental trauma can happen at work, in traffic and during recreational activities. Children are especially vulnerable to dental trauma while playing. Some of the most common dental injuries include:

  • Dental Fracture: The bone tissue of one tooth or more is broken. Requires thorough cleaning, placement or capping materials. There are differences if the pulp is damaged too. Tooth fractures where the pulp is damaged will require a much longer recovery and repeated treatments.
  • Luxation and Subluxation is when teeth come loose after a trauma but their bonding with the jawbone remains. This often requires a splint which looks and works similarly to a retainer. Sometimes root canal therapy is needed to heal and prevent possible infections to the wound.
  • Tooth avulsion is a complete loss or knocking out of a tooth. If immediate replanting is possible, the tooth can be replanted successfully. After one hour, replanting may be way less successful. Without an emergency replanting, the tooth is lost forever and the only good solution in this case is getting expensive dental implants or crowns.

Should You Choose White or Metal Fillings?

There is a long lasting debate about which treatment is better, since both of these have their own advantages and disadvantages. Many people still believe that metal fillings are better or at least on par with the composites, but the world is still moving toward using only composite fillings.

Despite the presence of mercury, amalgam is actually very safe and long lasting. The structure of mercury in amalgam is altered in a manner that makes it harmless, but still won’t help for those allergic to it. Amalgam is also relatively inexpensive and easier for dentists to work with, which all results in it being almost as twice cheap a procedure than composite fillings.

However, composites are a much finer material and are better for filling tooth cavities. These are made of acrylic plastics, porcelain and sometimes quartz, making them structurally similar to glass, but actually much thicker. While amalgam fillings are still longer lasting than composites, thickness and consistency of a white filling is better for teeth – not just because it fills cavities better, but there’s also the fact that it doesn’t naturally expand like metal does, so unlike the amalgam alloy, can’t lead to tooth crumbling or fracture over time.

White fillings also bond better to the tooth enamel. So, despite the fact they don’t last as long and are a bit more expensive than amalgam, white fillings will have a better long-term effect on the healthy state of a tooth.

The last, but not the least issue regarding amalgam is looks. It’s a piece of metal, and obviously looks like metal when it’s in your tooth. The colour of composite is a shade of light beige, very similar to the natural colour of tooth enamel. The front teeth are a major concern. Amalgams in these will always be visible despite being smaller and oriented towards the inside. A portion of alloy will remain visible in most cases. This makes white, composite fillings by far the best option for the front teeth. Most cosmetic dentists will opt for this treatment, as it looks far better than mental fillings.

Composite materials are often associated with chipping off, long treatment durations, short lifespan and relatively high price, but continuous white filling material research and development lead to the resolution of all these issues. White fillings were initially only a solution for those who prioritize the look of their teeth to health and comfort, but are now in many things more advanced than amalgam. In the future, these advantages will only become greater.