5 Questions to Ask When Choosing A Dentist
What is Sleep Dentistry and is it Right for You?
‘Sleep’ and ‘dentist’ are two words you may not think go together. But for anyone with severe anxiety of dentists, or those undergoing more involved procedures, sleep dentistry is a service designed to put you at ease.
What is Sleep Dentistry?
Sleep dentistry, also known as sedation dentistry, is just how it sounds: dental sedation to help patients relax during dental procedures or surgeries. For some procedures, a light sedation is administered to keep you awake but relaxed. On the other end of the sleep dentistry, spectrum IV sedation is provided by a specialist while a dentist operates on you.
What Kinds of Sedations are Used?
Depending on your level of fear and the dentists’ recommendation, the type of sedation used can take a variety of forms. The most common dental sedation methods are inhaled and intravenous, we are able to offer these two options at our dental practice in Perth.
Nitrous oxide – or ‘laughing gas’ – is mixed with oxygen and administered in low doses through a mask for mild to moderate sedation. The effects also wear off quickly so you may even be able to drive yourself home.
Moderate dental sedation by intravenous drug delivery is another common sleep dentistry method. Similar to inhaled sedation the specialist is in control of your dosage, but IV sedation tends to produce a moderate to deep sedation. We are able to coordinate a mobile specialist to provide this option within our clinic.
An anaesthetist will administer drugs that make you completely unconscious during the procedure. You cannot be awakened while under general anaesthesia and generally a drug is used to reverse the effects before they wear off naturally. For this method of sedation, you would typically need to go to a hospital. This wouldn’t be offered at a dental clinic such as Glen Forrest Dental Care.
Who is Sleep Dentistry Most Suitable For?
Sleep dentistry is most appropriate for people with bad anxiety of dentists, or those who may not be able to complete a routine procedure without sedation:
- Patients with bad anxiety or previous traumatising experiences
- Small children or special needs patients
- Patients undergoing large amounts of dental work required. Such as extractions, extensive filling work or implant placements.
Is it safe?
Provided dental sedation is administered by a qualified, trained and attentive dentist then generally the procedures are quite safe. Of course, as with any routine medical treatment, there are individual risk factors that should weigh into your decision.
Before pursuing sleep dentistry or dental general anaesthesia you should consult the team at Glen Forrest Dental Care to ensure you are fully aware of your own medical history, as well as what to expect.
We would just like you to know that all of us here at Glen Forrest Dental Care are committed to the overall health and well-being of our patients, their families and our staff during these unprecedented times. We are constantly making the necessary adjustments to the way our practice operates in order to continue to provide you the safest levels of customer service. Read more here.
As we have always maintained strict procedures regarding hygiene standards, our team members have been reminded to adopt a safety-first approach in regards to their own hygiene, as well as limit personal contact.
We have temporarily done away with all magazines, toys and reading material in our waiting room and replaced them with hand sanitiser part from the one that has always been available to you in the reception counter.
We encourage you to please inform us via phone, email or in your website chat should you be unwell within 24 hrs of your appointment. Additionally, if possible please try to avoid bringing too many family members with you. We have reduced the number of seats to allow a distance between people.
It is important to note that we all, as a community, adhere to the Australian Governments directive in relation to overseas travel and isolation. Therefore, we have requested that our staff do not use air travel, that they must inform us if they are flying anywhere or have been in contact with anyone flying in from overseas. Staff are also required to inform us whether they have been in contact with anyone who has been required to self-isolate. We have also put a strict policy in place to not allow anyone to attend work if they are feeling unwell.
In these uncertain times we remain committed to your oral health and continue to provide you with our personalised dental care services and undivided attention.
With kind regards always.
Tips for Choosing the Right Dentist for your Family
Choosing a family dentist is about so much more than routine check-ups. High-quality dental care is important, and so is finding a Perth family dental clinic where you feel comfortable and properly cared for.
Whether you’ve recently moved, your previous dentist closed up shop, or it’s simply time for a change, your search for a family dentist has two main criteria: personal and professional. After all, your regular dentist becomes a fixture in not just your life but also your kids’ lives as they grow up.
Here are a few things to look for when assessing family dental care practices in Perth:
Broad Range of Services
Family dentists must be able to address the whole family’s needs – including the unexpected.
Most of the services you’ll require fall under general dentistry. These are things like check-ups, scale and cleans, x-rays, fillings, root canal treatments and other non-emergency procedures.
When a family dental practice doubles as an emergency clinic, you know you are in good hands day and night. Dental emergencies are a part of life: from sporting injuries to toothaches and infections, the whole family may end up needing emergency dental care at some point.
Cosmetic dentistry is a specialised area of dental care that improves the appearance of discoloured, stained, cracked or missing teeth. This includes treatments such as dental implants, crowns, bridges and teeth whitening to name a few.
When looking for the right dentist for you and your family, comfort and positive experience is an important consideration. For example, at Glen Forrest Dental Care we work with our patients to create a new and relaxed relationship that they can feel comfortable. Some children may have had bad experiences at the dentist before, so we make it a priority to ensure that history does not repeat itself, by making sure that they are treated with the upmost respect and always feel like they’re in control.
For patients with more severe fears, the use of gas or the introduction of gas by a dentist or IV sedation by a specialist anaesthetist may also be required to help relax them. It’s important to check whether the dentist you’re considering has these facilities available if this is something you or a family member might require.
Many Australian health insurers have preferred or affiliated family dental clinics. You should check which dentists in your area are on the preferred provider list. This information is usually available on the clinic’s website, or by contacting your health insurer.
Health insurance affiliations are not just a sign of a high-quality Perth family dental practice, they also save you and your family a lot of money in the long run by reducing out-of-pocket payments for general and emergency dental services.
Certifications & Credentials
Before entrusting your child’s health to a medical professional, you should check their credentials to make sure they are qualified and experienced. Most Perth family dentists will show their experience on their website, or you can contact the clinic to find out more. (Also Read: 5 Questions to Ask When Choosing Dentist)
Friendly and Comfortable Environment
So now you have a clear picture of the dentist’s professional reputation, but what about their bedside (or chairside) manner? Building a trusted family dental practice means creating a space where children and teenagers feel safe, where adults are comfortable, the elderly are looked after properly, and everyone is respected as a member of the local community.
The best way to get a personal feel for the family dental clinics on your shortlist is to visit. Keep a few questions in mind when you do:
- Are people greeted warmly when they arrive?
- Is the waiting room set up to make children feel comfortable?
- Do the staff treat people with respect and compassion?
- Are wait times communicated clearly? Are they short?
- Do I feel comfortable here?
Glen Forrest Dental Care is a trusted family dentist with a broad range of services administered by a highly qualified, experienced and friendly team. Our dentists, dental nurses and support staff are here to make you feel comfortable not just on your first visit, but at every appointment over many years.
What You Need to Know About Teeth Whitening
What to Consider Before Whitening Your Teeth
Like every health-related procedure, there is a range of factors to consider when deciding which option suits you best.
How Does Teeth Whitening Work?
Teeth whitening is a bleaching process that lightens both the inside and outside of the tooth. How?
The inside of a tooth is a pulp chamber, containing blood vessels and nerves. Surrounding this chamber are two layers; dentine on the inside, and enamel on the outside, which form the white tooth cap that we see.
When we consume staining substances such as coffee, tea, red wine and tobacco, in addition to natural factors such as ageing, these layers can become discoloured. Some stains on the enamel can be removed through regular brushing and professional cleaning at the dentist, but sometimes discolouration will become more embedded and penetrate the dentine.
Teeth whitening, therefore, uses chemicals (mostly hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide) that reach through the enamel to the dentine, releasing oxygen that bleaches the deeper stains.
Being Safe With Cosmetic Teeth Whitening
Every set of teeth is unique. Since cosmetic teeth whitening uses chemicals, it’s important that you consider your own teeth and their sensitivity before settling on a treatment option. For example, for more sensitive teeth, continued application of whitening gels with lower chemical concentrations may be necessary to avoid discomfort, rather than fewer applications of a higher concentration.
We therefore recommend that you book an appointment with us at our Perth dental clinic to discuss which treatment option would be best for you and your teeth.
Teeth Whitening Options
There is a wide variety of teeth whitening products and services on the market. We’ve resumed the two most common pathways to help you consider your options. We also cover over the counter options and why you may want to reconsider using them.
1. Custom Take-Home Whitening Kit
The first option is a custom whitening kit. These kits contain a custom-fitted mouth tray and whitening gels adapted to the sensitivity of your teeth.
Following a consultation, this option allows you to be in control of the process without more costly visits to the dentist. Because of their adaptability, take-home kits often provide better results than over-the-counter options.
2. In-Chair Teeth Whitening
While this option is considerably more expensive, knowing you’re in the capable hands of a professional dentist means many consider it a worthy investment.
3. Over-The-Counter Teeth Whitening Products
The final teeth whitening option is products such as whitening strips that can be bought over the counter. While they often cost under $40, they cannot be tailored to your teeth in size, angle and gel chemical dosage. This means these products are not only less effective but also may be damaging to the enamel, making cavities worse. It is therefore important to seek medical advice before opting for such products.
Want to Learn More About Teeth Whitening?
We hope that you’re more confident about the world of teeth whitening and the pathways that are out there. Feel free to get in contact with us if you have any questions, or we would be happy to chat in more detail about any of these processes at your next check-up.