This 15-page report is full of extremely useful information and is ideal reading if you’re thinking about replacing missing teeth. Written by our Leighton Buzzard dentist, Dr Vimal Patel, the guide includes:
In many cases an implant is an ideal, long-term solution when replacing a missing tooth (or teeth), and is therefore worth considering. Implants feel like natural teeth, and they allow you to eat, drink, talk, and smile as normal.
Implants do not cause damage to the teeth on either side and are a great alternative for patients who do not get on well with dentures. To discuss implants in more detail please make an appointment for a chat with your dentist – together you can explore your options.
A dental implant is an artificial tooth (crown) which is mounted on top of a titanium ‘root’. The implant is placed in the jawbone. Titanium is the perfect material for implants, as it has been proven to work well with the body. The titanium root acts as a substitute for the natural root and is situated beneath the gum. The root provides a stable support for the crown which is fitted on top. You can choose a crown that is tailored to your preferences.
In order to decide whether or not implants are suitable for you an initial implant consultation with our specialist is required. During the consultation you will be given a full clinical examination and implant assessment. You will then be given a complete treatment plan suited to you.
Root canal treatment (also called endodontics) is needed when the blood or nerve supply of the tooth (known as the pulp) is infected through decay or injury. If the pulp becomes infected, the infection may spread through the root canal system of the tooth. This may eventually lead to an abscess. If root canal treatment (RCT) is not carried out, then the infection will spread and the tooth may need to be taken out.
The aim of the treatment is to remove all infection from the root canal(s). The root is then cleaned and filled to prevent any further infection. Root canal treatment is a skilled and time-consuming procedure. Most courses of treatment will involve more than one visit to your dentist. At the first appointment, the infected pulp is removed. Any abscesses, which may be present, can also be drained at this time. The canal(s) are then cleaned and a temporary filling, with medicine, is placed inside the root lining to allow the tooth to settle. On the second visit, the root canal(s) are then cleaned again and shaped ready for the permanent filling. An x-ray is taken, and plans can be made for a crown to be placed over the tooth in order to protect it.
A root-treated tooth will be more brittle than a normal tooth. We therefore recommend, in the majority of cases, that a crown be placed over the remaining tooth in order to protect it. Once the tooth is crowned it can be treated like any other tooth. It is important to maintain good oral hygiene at home and to cut down on sugar intake in your diet so as to prevent failure of the treatment through decay. Visiting your dentist for regular check-ups will help you to keep on track.
The health of your gums is vital to the health of your teeth, and knowing how to brush and floss effectively will keep your gums in good shape. Gum disease can produce swelling, soreness, or infection of the gums that support the teeth. There are two main forms of gum disease: gingivitis and periodontal disease.
Gingivitis causes inflammation of the gums. This happens when the gums around the teeth become very red and swollen due to the build up of plaque on the teeth. Plaque is soft, white, sticky stuff that accumulates on your teeth. It contains bacteria, and if it’s not removed it irritates the gums. Often the swollen gums will bleed when being brushed. But gingivitis is reversible – you just need to get rid of the plaque! Once the plaque is removed the gums can recover and become healthy once again.
Long-standing gingivitis can turn into periodontal disease. There are a number of types of periodontal disease and they all affect the tissues supporting the teeth. As the disease gets worse the bone anchoring the teeth in the jaw is lost, making the teeth loose. If this is not treated, the teeth may eventually fall out. Periodontal disease is not reversible, but it is possible to stop the gum and bone from shrinking further, calling the process to a halt.
We provide special periodontal treatments here with the expertise of Ruben Garcia our Periodontist.
Regular brushing, interdental cleaning, and flossing will control the amount of plaque and tartar that builds up on your teeth. Ask your dentist for advice about correct brushing and flossing techniques. A visit to the hygienist for a more thorough scale and clean will remove any remaining tartar.
If you have crowns or bridges it is important to floss in order to keep them clean, as plaque can build up under the ledge of the crown. Smokers are more likely to develop gum disease than non-smokers. Diabetes and hormonal changes can also make you more susceptible.
Dental practices normally refer patients who need complex extractions or surgical procedures. However, we offer the skilled services of consultant surgeon Ram Challa here at our practice. This means that our patients can see an oral surgeon here, in our own comfortable surroundings. It also means that patients do not have to wait on a long hospital waiting list.
Ram works at Milton Keynes Hospital, when he’s not here working with us. He has a wealth of experience when it comes to making the most complex surgical procedures simple and stress-free. We offer sedation for apprehensive patients; so you can sit back and relax during your treatment.