Frequently Asked Questions
Q:What should I do if I have bad breath?
A: If you have bad breath here are some tips. Make sure you:
- Brush after ever meal and snack. Particles of food can emit an odour.
- Floss your teeth daily or whenever you find there is food caught between your teeth. A toothbrush cannot get in between the teeth and below the gum line to disrupt bacteria and remove food particles.
- Brush or rake your tongue to remove the white film, which is plaque
- See your dentist regularly for a professional dental cleaning and recare exam.You can only do so much at home. A professional disruption of the bacteria that live around your teeth is required between 3-9 months. During your recare exam your teeth will be examined for new caries and failing fillings which can emit an odour.
- Be mindful of the foods you eat because garlic and onions are notorious for causing bad breath. This will go away only in time.
- It may be suggested for you to see your family physician because some medical conditions such as stomach ulcers and acid reflux can also cause bad breath.
Q: How often should I brush and floss?
A: You should brush your teeth ideally after every meal and snack (3 x/day) for 3 minutes. You should floss 1x daily or whenever you find there is food caught between your teeth.
Q: Are amalgam (silver) fillings safe?
A: Amalgam fillings are safe. They are made of mercury amalgam which is most active upon placement and removal of the filling. A silver filling takes about 24 hours to set. Once the filling is set the mercury is inactive and not harmful to your health.
Q: How often should I have a dental exam and cleaning?
A: You should have a dental exam every 6-12 months depending on your dental needs. You should have a professional dental cleaning every 3-9 months depending on your dental needs.
Q: How can I tell if I have gingivitis or periodontitis (gum disease)?
A: If your gums bleed when you brush or floss you may have gum disease. It is important to see your dentist. Only a dentist can determine if you have gingivitis or periodontitis. Gingivitis is inflammation/infection of the gums caused by the bacteria in your mouth. Gingivitis progresses to periodontitis if left untreated. Periodontitis occurs when the bacteria in your mouth start to destroy the bone that surrounds your teeth.
Q: Why is it important to use dental floss?
A: It is important to floss daily because your toothbrush cannot reach in between the teeth and under the gum line to disrupt bacteria.
Q: How can cosmetic dentistry help improve the appearance of my smile?
A: Cosmetic dentistry can improve the colour and shape of your teeth.
Q: What can I do about stained or discolored teeth?
A: If your teeth are stained or discoloured you may just be able to have them polished by the hygienist. If they are still too yellow for your liking there is always at-home whitening or veneers.