All dental journeys start with thorough examination and correct diagnosis. At TLC Dentistry, we offer a new patient checkup special, which is 1 hour comprehensive dental examination with all x-rays, photos and a personalised treatment plan tailored to suit your needs. Call us today for more information 07 5448 8628.
During your first appointment, we will spend an hour together, sometimes longer, learning about the condition of your mouth. We’ll have a chat about what you want for your teeth. Then, we will have a look at the condition of your mouth, teeth and gums, take some x-rays and pictures.
Once we’ve gathered all information, we will give you a full update on how your teeth are doing, along with clear, no mucking-around recommendations for treatment and an exact costing. We would only advise for you the treatment that we would choose for ourselves and our family. Where you go from there is entirely up to you and you will not get any pressure from us.
At TLC Dentistry, we understand and respect that everyone comes from a different financial situation, so we will offer various solutions to suit your dental budget. There is also the option of taking up an interest free payment plan to help you get the treatment you need.
We see a lot of adult patients who dread coming to us because of bad childhood experiences. Those terrible memories are etched in the brain and won’t go away, even with age. That’s why we try to make your children’s visit as fun as possible, so that they won’t have the same fear and will grow up with good dental habits.
We encourage you to bring your little ones along with you to your checkup visit, so that they can warm up to us and the environment. Gradually, they can progress to a ride in the chair and a checkup. When all they could notice is the cartoons on the ceiling TV, we can check and make sure their teeth and gums are healthy, and their bite is coming along nicely.
Our team is great with children. From the moment they come through the door, we will make them feel welcome, acknowledged and in control. We let them touch the mirror, the water spray and the suction tip before putting it in their mouth, so that they can have a feel and realize there is nothing to be afraid of.
If your little one is eligible for Medicare Child Dental Benefit Scheme, you are more than welcome to use your entitlement with us.
What does the word ‘periodontal’ mean? Let’s break it down.
Peri = around
Odont = Greek for tooth
Odontal = about the teeth
So ‘periodontal’ means literally ‘around the teeth’, which refers to the gums and bone that holds teeth in position.
When plaque is left on teeth for long, it calcifies and turns into tartar, which is impossible to be removed with toothbrush. Within plaque and tartar, there are tons of bacteria, which secretes toxins that make gums inflamed. The early warning sign of gum inflammation is bleeding when brushing. At this stage, if the tartar is removed during a scale and clean session, toxins could be removed and gums would settle down and become healthy again.
However, when bacteria is left on teeth for a long time, especially if you are a smoker or diabetic, the bacterial inflammation can then cause your bone around your teeth to resorb and consequently cause your gums to recede and ultimately leading to the loss of teeth. At this stage, we will need to perform a deep debridement, during which we numb up all your teeth and clean out plaque and tartar that’s trapped underneath the gum.
Whatever stage your teeth and gum are at, you can be confident that we will look after you. Just as building a concrete slab is important prior to building a house, making sure that the gums and bone are healthy is crucial to keeping teeth for the long run. That’s why we hope to see you regularly to maintain gum health.
Modern technology has advanced greatly over the past 30 years, making silver fillings a thing of the past.
When tooth structure is lost due to decay or cracks, we can replace them with lovely restorations that mimic natural tooth structure very well.
These restorations can be made from resin composite, or ceramic.
When restoring teeth with resin composite, the filling material is packed into the teeth and set with a blue light, which turns the soft material hard. This is ideal for a filling that is small to moderate in size.
When a large portion of tooth is missing, it usually needs something stronger, so we replace the missing tooth structure with a piece of ceramic, which is designed like a piece of puzzle that fits into your tooth. It takes more time and money to do a ceramic restoration, but once done, it will last a lot longer, as it is more robust and won’t break off easily when you chew.
We have all heard the horror stories of painful root canal treatment, but it doesn’t have to be this way. At TLC Dentistry, we use the most modern techniques and procedures to ensure root canal treatment is just like having a filling.
The root canal is the little tunnel in the roots of teeth where the nerve lives. When it is healthy, you can feel hot and cold on the teeth.
When a large decay develops in a tooth, bacteria from within the decay can travel way ahead of the boarder of the decay, reach the nerve and infect the nerve. That’s when a toothache starts to keep you up at night and painkillers are needed.
Root canal treatment is done in 3 stages.
First stage is when decay is removed and medication is dressed in the canal to settle the toothache.
Second stage involves thorough cleaning inside the canals to remove bacteria.
The last stage involves sealing the empty tunnels with a root filling.
After root canal treatment is completed, the tooth is weak and usually requires a crown to prevent the tooth from breaking off.
At TLC Dentistry, we would like to help you keep your teeth for as long as you wish. However, there are times when a tooth is so far gone and no one but a magician can bring it back. That’s when we make the call to remove a tooth.
We always make sure that a tooth is fully asleep. Sometimes infected teeth don’t get numbed up easily, so if you feel any pain when we are giving your broken tooth a good rock n roll, we will stop and administer more anesthesia. We will never press on if you can feel pain.
Sometimes removing a tooth is easy, like when a tooth is loose. However, sometimes taking out a tooth can be difficult, like for a big molar with hooked roots. In difficult situations, we may need to separate the tooth into pieces, so that each piece can make its own individual visit and the wound can be as small as possible, therefore making healing easy for you.
We will always give you clear instructions on what to do after you have a tooth removed and you can always call us if you are worried.
A crown is a like a helmet, that fits over and around a tooth. Generally referred to as a “cap”, a crown is used to restore a broken tooth, or to protect a weak tooth from breaking. Once placed, unlike dentures or false teeth, a crown cannot be removed easily. It stays on the tooth for a long time.
A crown can be made of porcelain or ceramic material, which will mimic the colour of your natural teeth and blend in beautifully. Sometimes metal alloys like gold will be a better option. We will always discuss which material suits you and your teeth and make the best decision together with you.
A bridge is a way to replace a missing tooth. Teeth are like a row of books on a shelf, when you take one out, the ones on the side collapse in to the empty space. This will make it hard for you to clean the remaining teeth and create problems in your bite.
A bridge can be used to replace single or multiple missing teeth. It anchors on teeth on either sides and spans empty space. Like crowns, once in place, a bridge cannot be easily removed and it will last a long time if you look after it. And like crowns, various materials can be used to make a bridge and we will always discuss which is best for you.
We all have friends and family who wear dentures. They are commonly called ‘false teeth’. Dentures are often the cheapest way to replace single or multiple teeth. They are removable, which means they need to be taken out of the mouth to be cleaned and put back in when you need to smile or chew with them.
When a denture replaces all the teeth in the top or bottom jaw, we refer to that as a full denture. While most of the time an upper full denture has good retention and stays in place well, a lower full denture is usually wonky and moves around a lot. This is the reason we always try to keep as many lower teeth as possible to serve as anchors.
The framework of dentures can be made of acrylic or metal. While acrylic is more cost effective, it is bulkier and tends to take up more space in the mouth. On the other hand, a metal framework denture is sleek in design and more comfortable to wear, at a higher cost. Again, we will always discuss with you and find the best option for your teeth and budget.
If you are unhappy about the colour of your teeth, there are 2 ways to change it.
Firstly, there is whitening with bleaching gel applied on the surface of teeth. This can be applied by yourself at home, or by us in the office. When doing it at home, it is a slower process, compared to in-office whitening, where you walk out with whiter teeth. The results of whitening tend to last an average of 12 months, less if you enjoy tea, coffee, red wine, before a top-up is needed.
Another way to have whiter teeth is to have veneers. Consider veneers like acrylic nails; they fit on the front surface of natural teeth. Veneers are usually made of porcelain, which doesn’t stain or change colour through the test of time. Veneers can not only improve the colour, but also the shape of teeth. The results are the best when done on multiple front teeth, so that veneers appear natural, live-like and harmonious with the rest of teeth.
The full name of TMD is temporo-mandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction. TMJ is the fancy name that we give to the jaw joint.
TMD can have one or more of those symptoms:
- chronic headache and migraine
- pain over the jaw joint
- neck and shoulder pain
- pain when chewing or opening mouth
- jaw popping or clicking or locking
- limited mouth opening
These conditions can occur in adults, as well as teenagers. It can also be quite debilitating, requiring intake of painkillers, sometimes even anti-depressant medications.
These symptoms are often just the tip of the iceberg, when the root of the problems lies in unidentified breathing issues during daytime and sleep. At TLC Dentistry, we work with local ENT specialist, together to provide proper diagnosis and emphasis on origin, which are paramount in successfully treating this disorder and providing you with long-term pain relief.
Snoring is the sound of obstructed breathing during sleep, in which the soft tissues at the back of the throat flop around and vibrate. It creates frustration in relationships and disturbs the ones sleeping nearby. Both children and adults can snore.
While snoring can sometimes be harmless, the latest research shows that 70% of snorers have a degree of breathing problem, ranging from upper airway restriction syndrome to obstructive sleep apnea.
Obstructive sleep apnea is a breathing disorder that happens during sleep. It occurs when you are making an effort to breathe, but no air enters your lungs, therefore no oxygen gets carried to heart and brain, having detrimental effect on general health.
As breathing disorders tend to leave their trails in the mouth and teeth, dentists are at the front line of spotting the warning signs and getting you the proper diagnosis and treatment. If you or your loved ones have one or more of the following symptoms, we can help.
- teeth grinding
- frequent night time awakenings
- waking up unrefreshed +/- a headache and a bad taste in the mouth
- excessive daytime sleepiness
- learning and concentration difficulties, high irritability
Orthodontics can be a very effective method to correct crooked or malpositioned teeth. With orthodontic treatment, over time the teeth will become aligned, making it a safe and popular treatment with long-lasting, economical and visually pleasing results.
At TLC Dentistry, Dr Linda Gao offers fixed orthodontic treatment (braces). A thorough consultation and examination, as well as photographic records are taken during an initial consultation. These records are used to analysis and plan orthodontic treatment.