Specialised Dentistry

Specialised dentistry is about maintaining the health of your teeth and gums so that they continue to provide the function that they were made for.

Tooth decay, gum disease and tooth loss can all be prevented with a proper daily oral hygiene programme as well as regular check-ups. Regular check-ups will identify issues early and avoid some of the major dental procedures outlined in this section.

Wisdom Teeth

There are normally two wisdom teeth in the upper jaw and two in the lower jaw, but some people have fewer than four or even none at all. Wisdom teeth tend to erupt in late teens or early 20’s and can cause various oral health or dental problems, including overcrowding and impaction.

Since they’re last to reupt, there may not be enough room in the jaw for the erupting wisdom teeth. This may stall their eruption and make brushing and flossing these teeth difficult. Food and bacteria often become trapped between the wisdom tooth and its neighbouring molar tooth, which may cause tooth decay and gum infections. A wisdom tooth that grows on an angle can’t contribute to chewing, which makes it useless and at times painful.

Crowded wisdom teeth in the upper jaw have a tendency to lean sideways and grate against the cheek. This may cause ulcers on the cheek and chewing problems. The pressure from wisdom teeth may also force the other teeth closer together and interfere with a person’s bite.

We will take x-rays to determine the growth pattern of the wisdom teeth and assess which wisdom teeth will be functional and which ones need to be removed. Sometimes, a person may need all of the wisdom teeth extracted.

Since tooth roots are not fully developed when wisdom teeth are still developing or erupting, and as tooth extractions that occur before age 20 tend to have fewer complications, dentists generally recommend removing impacted or misaligned wisdom teeth in young adults.

Sensitive Teeth

Sensitive teeth, also known as dentine hypersensitivity is the sensation felt when the nerves inside the dentin of the teeth are exposed to the environment. The sensation can range from irritation all the way to intense, shooting pain. This sensitivity can be caused by several factors, including wear, decaying teeth or exposed tooth roots.

Our hard outer parts of our teeth are mostly made up of dentin, which is covered in an enamel substance. The enamel substance acts as a sealant for the dentin, which contains lots of tiny holes that feed through to the sensitive inner pulp area of our teeth.

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In order to be sure your tooth sensitivity is not the result of a more serious condition, such as gingivitis (gum disease), it’s a good idea to make an appointment to stop the sensitivity and avoid further dental decay or damage.

Gum Treatments

Red, swollen or bleeding gums?

At Smylist gum care is our top priority because your gums are the foundations for your teeth.

Periodontitis is a disease that occurs when bacterial toxins penetrate the gum line and cause inflammation of the gums, ligaments and the bone structure, which support teeth. Although the effects of this inflammation may be irreversible, the disease’s progress can be halted and controlled.

Because periodontitis may occur without visible symptoms, it is important for your dental professional to examine regularly for increased gum pocket depths, one of the earliest signs of the disease.

The mildest form of periodontal disease is gingivitis, which results in plaque build up on tooth surfaces, between teeth and under the gum line. It causes the gums to become red, swollen and bleed.

Without proper attention, gingivitis will progress to periodontitis causing gum infection, decay and eventual loss of teeth.

At Smylist hygienist will check the health of your gums at your next dental check-up. If you have red or irritated gums contact us to book an appointment as early as possible.

Root Canal

A root canal is required when a tooth is decaying internally and requires the dentist to drill into the tooth, extract the pulp prior to refilling and capping the tooth to prevent future decay.

Your teeth are made of a hard material called dentine that is covered in a protective enamel. The interior is made of a sensitive tissue called pulp, which provides oxygen and nutrients to the tooth. Once a tooth is fully formed, nutrients for the tooth come from the tissue surrounding the root and the tooth can function without its pulp.

If the pulp becomes diseased or injured, through poor dental hygiene, fractured tooth, teeth grinding or other illness, the pulp is removed to avoid further decay and to save the tooth. During the procedure the dentist will clean and shape the root canals leading from the root of the teeth to the interior pulp. The interior is then cleaned, dried and packed with a filling. A crown or cap is then applied to the top of the tooth to seal the hole and create an artificial biting surface. This process is called a root canal treatment. Generally, front teeth have only one root, whereas molars can contain up to 4 roots, which may all require cleaning during the procedure.

The pain from root canal injury will not heal by itself. If left unattended it will deteriorate, causing worse pain as it progresses. The infection will spread, bone around the tooth will begin to degenerate and the tooth may fall out. The next alternative is to remove the tooth, which will then require a bridge or implant to maintain your bite. The best solution for you in any case is to keep your original teeth wherever possible. Unless it is unviable, we will recommend a root canal as a first priority.