top of page


Advice from your local Canberra dentist

Wondering about what might happen during your appointment? Maybe you've got a question about your oral health.

Find out all you need to know thanks to your local Canberra dentists at Wanniassa Dental Surgery. 

Want to ask us a question?
  • I brush my teeth and still have bad breath – what can I do?
    The primary cause of halitosis (bad breath) is bacteria laden mucous on the tongue. A good first step to reducing your mouth’s odour is to begin scraping your tongue. There are tongue scrapers available designed specifically for this purpose; or simply brush the length of your tongue with your toothbrush. It is essential that you visit your dentist to determine whether you have gingivitis (gum disease), which is also a leading cause of bad breath. Should the odour persist even after dental attention, there could be a more serious health problem (diabetes, sinus infection, etc.) causing the odour.
  • Do I really need x-rays?
    Radiographs are absolutely necessary in the diagnosis of early tooth decay. Catching a cavity in the early stages is beneficial as treatment is easier. Discovered early enough, tooth decay can be treated by filling the cavity. The amount of radiation received from a dental x-ray is miniscule. The exposure is far outweighed by the benefits of early tooth decay detection. Furthermore, the dental x-ray can be used to detect tumours or cysts in the jawbone, as well as abscesses and periodontal disease.
  • How do I care for my teeth between visits?
    Even with bi-annual cleanings, it is necessary for you to do your part between visits. Brushing, flossing and tongue scraping should all be done on a daily basis, preferably twice a day for best results. If your dentist has recommended a rinse to deter plaque, follow your dentist’s directions or those on the bottle. Be sure to see your dentist for a thorough cleaning twice a year to help maintain oral hygiene and dental health.
  • What are wisdom teeth?
    The third molars or wisdom teeth are the last teeth to come in and erupt, usually between 18 and 25 years of age. Large majorities of people do not have adequate room in their mouth for these four extra teeth. It is very common for wisdom teeth to become impacted (not completely break through to the surface) and they often require surgical extraction. An impacted tooth that is not properly addressed may become infected, and can cause other teeth to shift.
  • If my tooth gets knocked out, what should I do?"
    Call your dentist immediately. It is essential that the tooth be replaced within 30 minutes or chances of it reattaching diminish substantially. It is crucial that you handle the tooth only by the crown (top portion) to avoid damage to the cells of the root that are necessary for reattachment. Carefully rinse the root with clean water – DO NOT SCRUB. After rinsing the tooth, place it in your mouth between the gums and cheek to keep it moist. If the injured person cannot hold the tooth in their mouth, wrap the tooth in gauze (or clean cloth) and submerge in a container filled with milk. It is absolutely imperative that the tooth does not dry out.
  • When is the best time to start my child’s dental care?
    Ideally, the time for your child’s first dentist visit is at 3 years of age. This is the perfect opportunity for your child’s dentist to examine their oral structure and development. Early signs of tooth decay can be seen, such as ‘bottle rot’ and hopefully eliminated. Additionally, the dentist can give you pointers with regard to a chronic thumb-sucking problem or prolonged use of a dummy. Prolonged periods of thumb sucking and use of a dummy can cause problems with your child’s teeth. The pressure exerted on the back of the teeth can cause misalignment by pushing the teeth forward. Future need of corrective treatment may be eliminated if you can limit this habit.
  • When will my child's teeth erupt?
    The age at which a child's first tooth appears will differ from child to child. Babies are born with all of their primary teeth formed beneath their gums. These start to emerge between the ages of 6-10 months, usually starting with the lower front teeth. The complete set of baby teeth is present in children around the age of three. The first permanent, adult teeth start to appear around six years of age. The teeth that usually start to appear first are the first molars and the lower front teeth. These are important in shaping the lower part of your child's face, as well as affecting the position of their other permanent teeth. By the age of 12, your child will have a complete set of permanent teeth. Wisdom teeth start to appear between the ages of 17 and 21.
  • What is cosmetic dentistry?
    Cosmetic dentistry is the practice of creating a nicer smile for the patient. Cosmetic procedures include teeth whitening; porcelain veneers; composite bonding; porcelain on lays; porcelain inlays; dental implants and smile makeovers. Working with the patient, our dentists can determine what alternatives are best for you. Read More
  • I am so embarrassed about my teeth. Can you help me?
    Thanks to cosmetic dentistry, anyone and everyone can have a beautiful smile. Whether you have not been to a dentist in a long time because of a bad experience or have been too embarrassed by your teeth, we can help you achieve the best version of you. Your dentist will discuss your concerns with you and work up a plan to give you the smile you dream of. With the dental techniques available today, a new smile can be yours with just a few visits to our office.
  • What is a CEREC crown?
    A CEREC crown is completed in the dentist’s office in one visit. Using a CAD/CAM (Computer Aided Design/Computer Aided Manufacture) system, the procedure is completed efficiently and the crown is carved in about 20 minutes to the dentist’s exacting measurements. During the same visit, the crown is installed on the tooth. Read More
  • I am terrified of the dentist, what can I do?"
    Fear of the dentist is not uncommon. Our dentists can prescribe medication that will take the stress and fear out of your dental visit. Through the use of nitrous oxide gas (laughing gas) or mild sedatives, you will become calm, happy and lose your fear during your dental procedure.
  • Is IV Sedation dangerous?
    Intravenous (IV) sedation is completely safe. Any dentist that offers IV sedation is properly trained and carefully monitors any patient that is sedated. Unlike general anesthesia, which requires intubation (breathing assistance), IV sedation in dentistry relieves severe anxiety in fearful patients by achieving ‘twilight’ sleep. Under this sedation, the patient is able to respond to commands and answer questions. Because you will be sleepy, it is necessary that someone be available to return you home. Read More
  • What is gum disease?
    Gum disease is usually put into two categories: gingivitis and periodontitis. Gingivitis is where your gum tissue is inflamed. This occurs as a result of plaque or tartar building up along the gum line. Your gums may be sore, bleed easily or appear swollen. At this stage, no bone structure has been lost and good oral hygiene habits can reverse and prevent gum disease. Your gums should never bleed as a result of brushing or flossing. One of the first signs of gum disease is blood appearing on your toothbrush or dental floss. Periodontitis occurs as a result of gingivitis progressing where treatment has been neglected or delayed. This happens when the gum infection spreads from the gums to the jawbone that supports the teeth. Loss of support for the teeth causes them to become loose and to fall out. Periodontitis is not reversible but can be stopped through good oral hygiene and regular visits to your dentist.
  • How does gum disease start?
    Gum disease starts when plaque builds up along your gum line. If this plaque is not removed through regular brushing and flossing, your saliva will harden the plaque into tartar or calculus. This calculus promotes infections at the point of attachment. Your gums will be red, however at this stage you may not notice any other symptoms. As gum disease progresses, tiny pockets of infection form along the gum line. Your gums start to become more swollen and often bleed when you brush or floss. If left unchecked, gum disease can destroy your gum tissue and your jawbone. This leads to the risk of losing one or more teeth Warning Signs of Gum Disease: Gums that bleed from brushing or flossing Red or swollen gums Loose teeth or gums that have pulled away from the teeth Constant bad breath Pus in between your teeth and gums Your bite changes Your partial dentures no longer fit We recommend you regularly visit the helpful team here at Wanniassa Dental Surgery. Through regular check-ups, we can help ensure that gum disease is stopped in its tracks before it becomes a more serious issue.
bottom of page