Monthly Archives: April 2021

Pros and Cons of White Fillings

The most common dental problem patients face is tooth decay, which leads to painful cavities. Fortunately, most teeth with cavities can be saved if they get early attention from the best dentist in Scarborough, before the decay has the chance to weaken the tooth or cause infection. Tooth fillings are the first phase in saving decayed teeth, and you can now choose to get white fillings vs. silver fillings.

How White Fillings Work for Patients

White fillings have several benefits that traditional fillings lack. These include:

1. Natural Appearance

The most attractive benefit of white fillings is the colour. The fillings are made from composite resin that mimics the appearance of natural tooth material, which makes them practically invisible to others. This is especially important if you develop a cavity in a visible tooth, because a traditional amalgam filling will be unsightly.

2. Easier Placement

The composite resin material bonds easily with your natural tooth, so it requires less work and time during the tooth fillings procedure to get it to adhere. Unlike amalgam fillings, the resin attaches directly to the tooth. The material is more flexible, so the dentist needs to do less drilling. This helps to preserve more of the natural tooth than is possible with metal fillings.

3. Less Expensive Than Restoration

White fillings can restore decayed teeth to full functionality without the cost of a dental crown or implant. This is an ideal solution for patients with multiple cavities, particularly if they don’t have dental insurance.

After a consultation with the best dentist in Scarborough, you will have a detailed treatment plan. You will know precisely how much you can expect to pay for white fillings vs. silver fillings, and which option is the best choice for you.

Disadvantages of White Fillings

Few things in life are without any disadvantages, and tooth fillings are no exception. There are a few instances where silver fillings out-perform the white. These are:

1. Longevity

White fillings last 7 to 10 years in healthy patients, provided they have good dental care that includes regular checkups and teeth cleanings. Silver fillings last 12 to 15 years, which gives them a longer lifespan and ultimately makes them a less expensive option. Patients should take this factor into account when choosing white fillings vs. silver fillings.

2. Longer Procedure

Placement of white tooth fillings is typically a longer procedure than that of metal fillings, mainly because the dentist needs to keep the treatment area as dry as possible to get the material to adhere. This can increase the duration of the tooth fillings procedure, which affects the cost.

3. Sustain Damage

Composite resin fillings may be resistant to corrosion, but they aren’t immune to other kinds of damage. Patients who suffer from bruxism, for example, may find their white fillings get chipped during nightly tooth grinding.

These are all factors to bear in mind when you’re choosing white fillings vs. silver fillings. A visit to the best dentist in Scarborough can help you determine whether you are a good candidate for tooth fillings and decide on the way forward.

Please call 416-291-3117 or click here to schedule an appointment today.

Find Out if Tooth Whitening is Right for You

No matter how well or how often you brush and floss your teeth, you can still develop stains over time. There are two kinds of tooth discolouration, both of which eventually take their toll if you don’t get suitable professional treatment. Teeth whitening helps Scarborough patients present their best and whitest smile.

Causes of Stained Teeth

Intrinsic tooth stains develop inside the tooth enamel on the dentin, which is the hard layer of material that lies beneath the enamel. Common causes of these stains include:

  • The use of medications such as tetracycline antibiotics, either during childhood or during your mother’s pregnancy.
  • Oral trauma that caused internal bleeding or killed the roots of the tooth.
  • Natural discoloration of the dentin as your tooth ages.
  • Overexposure to fluoride during childhood.

Extrinsic or external tooth stains are typically caused by drinking tea, coffee, and other beverages, smoking, age, or the development of plaque and tartar.

Teeth Cleaning vs. Whitening

It’s essential for patients to understand the difference between a professional dental cleaning and a tooth whitening, and to get a dentist’s recommendation on the best treatment for your situation. Teeth cleaning is important for the ongoing health of your teeth and gums, whereas teeth whitening procedures are purely cosmetic.

Most people need to have regular teeth cleaning throughout their lives. While the procedure eliminates plaque accumulation and helps you avoid gum disease, it doesn’t necessarily leave teeth sparkling white. In our Scarborough office, teeth whitening is done using high-quality products to bleach the teeth to ensure that all discolouration is eliminated.

Eligibility for Teeth Whitening

The ideal candidate for teeth whitening has healthy teeth with a yellow tone, which responds well to the whitening process. Patients should be over 16 years of age and free from fillings, restorations like dental veneers, implants, bridges, or crowns. The reason for this is that restorations are not affected by the whitening process. If these were matched to your natural teeth during placement, they might no longer match after you whiten the stained teeth.

Anyone with gum disease or infection, tooth decay, cavities, or exposed roots should discuss their situation with our dentists before scheduling a teeth whitening procedure. If you have particularly sensitive teeth or are allergic to peroxide and other bleaching agents, you might be better suited to another type of cosmetic dentistry.

What Result to Expect

Teeth whitening in Scarborough delivers excellent results for patients who fit the eligibility criteria. You can see the full effects of a professional whitening after 24 hours have elapsed, and the procedure is most effective on extrinsic or surface stains. Deeper, intrinsic stains are more difficult to remove, and whitening may not be able to address them all. For these types of stains, you might want to consider porcelain veneers or dental bonding. The effects of your teeth whitening will last longer if you continue practicing good oral hygiene habits.

If you’re a good candidate for teeth whitening, our Scarborough office will be pleased to schedule an appointment for you. Please call 416-291-3117 or click here to book your whitening procedure today.

How to Treat Sleep Apnea in Scarborough Patients with a Dental Appliance

How to Treat Sleep Apnea in Scarborough Patients with a Dental Appliance

Sleep apnea is a potentially serious sleep disorder characterized by snoring and the repeated stopping and restarting of your breathing. The most common form is called obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), which occurs when your throat muscles relax and prevent the oxygen from reaching your brain. This state forces all your organs to work harder to pump the oxygen through your system. The condition leaves you with fatigue and headaches in the morning and can profoundly impact your organs. For patients who suspect they have sleep apnea, our Scarborough dental office can help you to get a diagnosis.

The Dental Connection

Snoring and breathing during sleep might not appear to have an obvious dental connection, but there are several links between your OSA and dental care. Snorers typically sleep with their mouths open, which causes mouth and throat dryness. Bacteria thrive in a dry mouth, and the absence of enough saliva to clean the surface of the teeth gives them a perfect opportunity to cause tooth decay.

Dental signs of sleep apnea also include teeth grinding, which contributes to a higher risk of cracked or chipped tooth enamel. Grinding, known as bruxism in dentistry, can also lead to worn-down teeth, headaches and jaw pain. It’s not solely about the dental connection, however. Sleep apnea is also linked to an increased risk for high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease.

Getting Diagnosed with Sleep Apnea

If you’re waking up in the morning with one or more of the symptoms listed above, discuss the possibility of sleep apnea with your dentist. Patients can ask their family doctor to order a sleep test and deliver an official diagnosis. The sleep study usually occurs at an Ontario sleep clinic and is normally covered by your OHIP insurance. You’ll be required to spend the night there while medical technicians and a doctor monitor your sleep patterns through the use of electrodes connected to your head. It’s a simple, painless test, and you’ll know soon afterwards what your diagnosis is. You can share the diagnosis with your dentist.

Treatment for Sleep Apnea

It’s vital for people diagnosed with sleep apnea to get treatment for the condition. Losing weight can help, but obesity isn’t the only cause of apnea. Depending on the severity of your sleep apnea, the sleep clinic doctor might recommend you start using a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine to push oxygen into your lungs during sleep. Potential treatments also include automatic machines (APAP) and bilevel machines (BiPAP), which work on the same principle.

The Benefits of a Dental Appliance

If you have mild to moderate sleep apnea, Scarborough patients may be good candidates for treatment with a mandibular advancement device (MAD), which is a dental appliance like a mouth guard. A consultation with our dentists will determine whether a custom mouth guard worn during the night will help keep your jaw in a forward position, preventing the muscles from blocking your airway.

This type of appliance is also invaluable for preventing teeth grinding during sleep, whether it is a symptom of sleep apnea or has another cause. In some instances, patients use PAP equipment in combination with the anti-snoring mouthpiece to treat their sleep apnea effectively.

Costs, Benefits and Disadvantages of Dental Treatment for Sleep Apnea

A sleep apnea dental appliance cost ranges between $1,500 and $2,000 which includes the dental consultation fee and the laboratory’s manufacturing cost.

For mild and moderate sleep apnea, quite often the MAD or oral appliance enables you to avoid needing treatment with a PAP machine altogether. For patients with severe apnea, combination therapy using both a device and a PAP machine can deliver benefits.

When you’re considering the pros and cons of an oral appliance for sleep apnea, the benefits far outnumber the disadvantages. Not only is a mandibular advancement device much less cumbersome for daily use, it’s also more portable for travelling than any of the PAP machines. In addition, many people simply don’t want to use a CPAP, which makes them good candidates for the MAD.

For more information on custom mouth guards for sleep apnea, Scarborough patients should schedule a consultation with our experienced, compassionate dental team. Please call 416-291-3117 or click here to make an appointment today.