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The Rising Trend of Eco Dental

The Rising Trend of Eco Dental

By today’s standards, it’s essential that individuals and businesses are doing as much as they can to reduce environmental impact and operate in as eco-friendly a manner as possible. In terms of dentist offices, that’s where the term ‘eco dental’ comes into play.

Eco dental, or eco-friendly dentistry is an approach designed to make every aspect of the dental experience as environmentally conscious as possible.

Want to know more about eco dentistry, and learn about how it could benefit you as a patient? Read on for our comprehensive guide to the rising trend of eco dental treatments in Australia.

What is eco dental?

Named because of its focus on sustainability and environmental health benefits, ‘eco dental’ refers to oral health care and treatments that are delivered using materials and technologies that are eco-friendly and designed with environmental impact in mind.

The term ‘eco dentistry’ has been trademarked in the United States by the Eco-Dentistry Association. Dental practices can apply for official eco dentistry certifications, or can simply incorporate eco-friendly procedures into their practices.

Benefits of eco dental

The following are benefits you’ll reap if opting for eco dental treatments and procedures:

Less exposure to radiation

As eco dental practices utilise digital radiography technology, the need for a traditional X-ray is eliminated. Digital radiography exposes patients to 90 per cent less radiation than a traditional X-ray, so you’ll benefit from less exposure to these harmful radiation waves.

Fewer disposable materials

Instead of discarding of multiple bibs, head rest covers and surgery gowns every day, eco-friendly dental practices use appropriate sanitisation and high quality washing machines to reduce waste and eliminate the use of disposable paper covering products.

Metal-free dental treatments

For many, a common fear is a dentist’s clunky metal tools or fixtures. If you’d rather a more natural-looking treatment, an eco-dentistry may be for you. As well as receiving a comfortable and natural-looking restorative within your mouth or on your teeth, you’ll be protecting the environment from copious amounts of metal waste.

Why eco dental is the right choice

As well as the above benefits, there are plenty of deciding factors if you’re considering seeking treatment from an eco-friendly dentist. As well as different treatment techniques and technologies, eco dental practices make conscious choices to ensure everything within their building is abiding by environmentally sound practices. This means you may spot energy-efficient light bulbs or low flowing sinks and toilets to conserve water. Other, less noticeable changes may include paints that decrease the amount of toxins in the air.

Finding out whether your current dentist abides by eco-friendly dental techniques is easy – simply ask them during their next visit, or check their website for information about environmentally conscious treatments and features.

Protect your teeth with Pitt Street Dental

Here at Pitt Street Dental in Sydney, we utilise a range of high quality, eco-friendly dental technologies to make your treatment as optimal and environmentally conscious as possible. Call our dental centre on (02) 9223 4767 to book an appointment.

Why Your Kids Should Wear Mouthguards For Sport

Why Your Kids Should Wear Mouthguards For Sport

Mouthguards protect against injury to the teeth, jaw, neck and brain. These injuries don’t discriminate when it comes to age – so ensuring your kid is wearing a mouthguard while playing sport is one of the most effective and safe ways to make sure they are protected from potential accidents.

Here’s our comprehensive guide to kids and mouthguards, including the types of mouthguards available, the types of sports we’d recommend mouthguard use for, and the overall benefits of wearing a mouthguard while playing sport. 

What ages and sports should use mouthguards

Generally, kids aged between 8 and 12 are the most affected by lost or damaged teeth while playing amateur or competitive sport. Sports including hockey, basketball, soccer, rugby, football, baseball and lacrosse are common contact sports where mouthguards are recommended – but non-contact activities including mountain biking, rock climbing or skateboarding also provided good opportunities for mouthguard use for protection.

The different types of mouthguards

Depending on your budget and your child’s sport, there are three types of mouthguards you can purchase.

The first two, pre-formed mouthguards and ‘boil and bite’ mouthguards, are both available at general sport stores. Pre-formed mouthguards come ready-to-wear and are ‘one size fits all’ in design. These are a good choice if you’re in need of a mouthguard in a short time frame. ‘Boil and bite’ mouthguards are slightly more customisable, as they can be softened in boiling water and then adjusted to fit your child’s teeth.

For maximum comfort and protection, opt for the third option, a custom fit mouthguard. These are made using specialised materials in a dentist’s office, and while they’re more expensive than the other two types, they are comprehensive and more safe and protective. 

Benefits of wearing a mouthguard while playing sport

Above all, the biggest benefit you’ll receive from wearing a mouthguard is protection of your mouth and face in case of injuries while out on the field. A mouthguard acts as a shock absorber that protects your teeth and jaw from potentially breaking. While wearing a mouthguard, you’ll also be protected from accidentally biting your lips or tongue when the injury occurs.

Other benefits of wearing a mouthguard include the prevention of neck or brain injuries, and peace of mind to your child that they’ll be protected in case of a freak injury or accident while playing sport.

What mouthguards can help you avoid

Dental injuries are easily prevented (or their impact is lessened) by the use of a mouthguard while playing sport. If they don’t wear a mouthguard, your child could run the risk of teeth dislocation, nerve injury, lost teeth, chipped teeth, required tooth repositioning or root fracture. All of these injuries require immediate medical attention and can be extremely painful.

Protect your teeth with Pitt Street Dental

Want to make sure your child is safe and protected during their next game? Here at Pitt Street Dental in Sydney, we’re focused on the prevention of injuries sustained during sport. Our highly trained team provide expert sports dentistry services through custom mouthguard creation to ensure sports players’ mouths are as protected as possible. Book an appointment for a new mouthguard moulding at Pitt Street Dental Centre today.

The Different Types of Tooth Pain

The Different Types of Tooth Pain

We’ve all experienced some kind of tooth pain before – but how well do we understand it? Differentiating between the myriad of tooth pain categories is crucial in understanding whether you may need urgent dental treatment.

So if your tooth pain knowledge is a little rusty, we’ve compiled this handy list that explores the different types of tooth pain, and the source of each tooth pain in case you think you may be experiencing it and need advice.

Sharp pain

Typically a result of damage on your tooth, sharp tooth pain could indicate space in crowns or cavities, broken cusps or decaying along your gum line. To rectify this pain, seek attention from a dentist as quickly as possible – the faster you see one, the less likely it will develop into a more serious problem.

Dull pain

Whereas sharp pain is an indicator of physical tooth damage, dull pain represents damage within your teeth, usually pertaining to your nerves. A dull toothache can be spontaneous, but you may notice it flaring up when consuming food or drinks at hot temperatures. To eliminate dull pain, your dentist may recommend a root canal. See them for a check-up first.

Severe throbbing

Severe throbbing tooth pain is generally a sign of infection – particularly if your gums or face are swelled up. Other symptoms of tooth infection include pain while chewing or gum bleeding. Seek dental treatment as quickly as possible to help this pain subside.

Irregular pain

If you only notice your specific type of tooth pain intermittently, it’s likely there are cavities, cracks or swelling occurring on your tooth. You’ll likely only notice this when your teeth are reacting to something, for example, opening your mouth to chew something. Seek dental treatment to understand the root cause of this type of pain.

Dental abscesses

Tooth abscesses are caused by bacteria build-up that infects the pulp section of your tooth. This not only causes tooth pain, but can spur fever and a constant bad taste in your mouth. Check in with your dentist if experiencing this kind of pain – they may recommend a root canal procedure.

Hot or cold sensitivity

Though sensitivity in teeth doesn’t always equate to teeth problems, there may be an underlying dental problem you wish to seek help for. If this sensitivity is teeth-related, it could be a small decay, loose filling or a receding gum near your tooth. Using a soft toothbrush and specific sensitive toothpaste could rectify this, but if it gets any worse, consult your dentist about the problem.

Protect your teeth with Pitt Street Dental

Recognise any of these pains? Make sure you seek treatment from your dentist as soon as possible. Here at Pitt Street Dental in Sydney, we provide emergency dental care 7 days a week. Our priority is providing you with emergency dental care to help you get back to your day, pain-free. If you require an after-hours dentist, call our dental centre on (02) 9223 4767 to make a same-day appointment.

The 5 Stages of Tooth Decay

The 5 Stages of Tooth Decay

As its name suggests, there are plenty of negative medical problems that can come with tooth decay. Between cavities, abscesses or even total tooth loss, the tooth decay process is caused by the presence of bacteria that live in dental plaque.

Tooth decay occurs in several stages, spanning from initial demineralisation to painful dental abscesses. Read on for more information about each of the stages of tooth decay, and some helpful tips on how to prevent this painful and uncomfortable process from happening to you.

Stage 1: Initial demineralisation

The outer layer of a tooth is coated in enamel. Enamel is comprised mostly of minerals, which, when exposed to acids produced by plaque bacteria, can lose its minerals and begin to decay. This stage of initial demineralisation often appears as a white spot on a tooth, and is an early sign of tooth decay.

Stage 2: Enamel decay

As the tooth decay process continues, the enamel will break down further, and the initial white spot may darken to reveal a brownish hue. At the same time, small cavities may appear in your tooth. Pay a visit to your dentist to have these cavities filled in a timely manner.

Stage 3: Dentin decay

Dentin is the tissue that sits underneath a tooth’s enamel. Dentin is soft and extremely sensitive, so by the time decay reaches the dentin layer, the overall tooth decay process speeds up. When dentin is affected by tooth decay, you may begin experiencing sensitivity on your teeth, particularly with hot or cold drinks.

Stage 4: Pulp damage

A tooth’s pulp is its innermost layer that contains blood vessels and nerves that keep your teeth healthy. Once decay reaches it, the pulp can start to swell up and place pressure on surrounding nerves. This can lead to extreme tooth pain.

Step 5: Abscess

Once tooth decay has advanced into the pulp, an infection can be caused by infiltrating bacteria. This increased inflammation can lead to a pocket forming at the base of your tooth, which is called an abscess. A tooth abscess can be extremely serious and require immediate medical treatment. It can cause severe pain into your jaw, face and neck.

How to avoid tooth decay

There are a few prevention strategies that can lessen your chance of potential tooth decay. These include regular dentist check-ups, brushing your teeth regularly and effectively, and limiting sweets or foods with a high volume of sugar. In broader terms, maintaining a healthy and structured oral hygiene schedule is vital in preventing tooth decay or other tooth damage.

Protect your teeth with Pitt Street Dental

Concerned you’re experiencing tooth decay? Here at Pitt Street Dental in Sydney, we offer a wide range of options when it comes to tooth fillings. And, once one of our highly trained dentists has completed your tooth filling, we’ll provide you with comprehensive aftercare instructions. If you’re in need of a tooth filling or repair due to tooth decay, book an appointment at Pitt Street Dental Centre today.

How To Avoid Grinding Your Teeth When You Sleep

How To Avoid Grinding Your Teeth When You Sleep

Unfortunately, many people find themselves unconsciously grinding their teeth as they sleep. Known as ‘bruxism’, the act of teeth grinding can be potentially damaging for your oral health and other facial features.

But luckily, there are a few things you can do to prevent damage from teeth grinding as you sleep. Read on for a definition of bruxism (and what it can cause), key signs and symptoms of bruxism, and a few handy tips to prevent it from affecting your pearly whites.

What is bruxism?

Commonly known as ‘tooth-grinding’, the term ‘bruxism’ refers to the excessive and unconscious grinding of teeth or clenching of jaw. Though this can happen while you’re awake, it’s more common while people are asleep.

Grinding your teeth while asleep every once in a while is normal and won’t cause long lasting damage, but if it becomes more frequent, it’s important to have it addressed and monitored to maintain your oral health.

What causes bruxism?

There are several factors that cause sleep bruxism. These include sleep disorders such as insomnia or sleep apnea, neurological disorders such as anxiety or depressive disorders, periods of increased stress, digestion issues, genetics or the consumption of food or beverage that can cause acid reflux or that contain high levels of caffeine.

What are the signs and symptoms of bruxism?

As people with sleep bruxism won’t be aware of their condition while it’s happening, sleep bruxism symptoms are often spotted by people who regularly co-sleep with them – or in drastic cases, by the sleeper themselves when they wake up and notice visible tooth damage or impacts.

The most common symptoms and indicators of sleep bruxism are jaw pain, headaches that cause pangs around the temple, clicking of jaw joints, issues with chewing (including hypersensitivity, fatigue or tenderness), tongue pain, earaches or dental symptoms such as tooth pain, enamel erosion or chipped teeth. In severe cases, teeth can even become loosened as a result of sleep bruxism.

How to prevent bruxism

If you recognise any of the above symptoms and think you might have sleep bruxism, there are plenty of ways to seek help and address the issue. For starters, assess any underlying health conditions you may have to see if there’s a correlation between them and your bruxism. Then, consider implementing a structured sleep routine to help improve your quality of sleep. This could include setting a regular sleep time, limiting screen time before bed, doing a few relaxing activities before lights out, and making your bedroom as cosy and inviting as possible.

Another fantastic way to help prevent sleep bruxism is to be fitted for a mouthguard that you can wear every night while sleeping. These devices will protect your teeth as you sleep, and can be customised to help reduce your specific sleep bruxism symptoms.

Protect your teeth with Pitt Street Dental

Here at Pitt Street Dental in Sydney, our highly trained team are proficient in creating custom mouthguards to ensure teeth and mouths are as protected as possible. If you think you may be experiencing symptoms of sleep bruxism, book an appointment for a new mouthguard moulding at Pitt Street Dental Centre today.

Foods That Can Easily Chip Your Teeth

Foods That Can Easily Chip Your Teeth

It may not be front of mind when you’re reaching for a delicious snack, but there are some foods out there that are potentially hazardous to your teeth, and can easily cause cracks, chips or other repairs that are costly and inconvenient.

So, before you add these yummy foods to your shopping trolley, we’ve listed the top 4 food that can easily chip your teeth below. Plus, we’ve also included some helpful advice about what to do if you chip your tooth on any of these (or other) foods.

1. Popcorn

Though a delicious snack, unfortunately, the kernels in popcorn have the potential to chip or crack your teeth quite easily. Popcorn kernels can actually get stuck deep under your gum tissue, and in extreme cases, aren’t always able to be removed by yourself.

2. Meat 

While most meat won’t affect your teeth, bones on meat can have a major impact on your teeth when it comes to chipping or cracking. Accidentally chewing on a bone can cause you to fracture part of a tooth, or worse – you could lose an entire filling. To prevent this, try and consume boneless meats instead.

3. Hard candy and lollies 

In general, hard candies are designed to be sucked and kept in the mouth for a long time, until they dissolve and become smaller. If people attempt to bite down on a hard candy or lolly, it can be a recipe for disaster when it comes to tooth health. They can easily cause chipping or cracking, or parts of the candy can become lodged between tooth and gum, which can be extremely uncomfortable. They are also notorious for damaging existing dental work, including fillings or crowns.

4. Dried Fruit

Though dried fruit is a popular choice for those after a healthy snack, it’s an extremely sticky snack, and therefore a troublesome food when it comes to chipping or damaging teeth. Sticky foods tend to stay on your teeth longer – so make sure you rinse your mouth out with plenty of water, and floss your teeth directly after eating dried fruit or anything else sticky.

How to fix chipped teeth

If a piece of your tooth enamel has chipped off, the best course of repair is to attend your dentist’s office and arrange a filling. Depending on the level of damage that has been caused, your dentist may smooth the edge of your teeth in a procedure called cosmetic contouring, or they may use a conditioning liquid and resin combination in a process called ‘bonding’ to fill in any gaps.

Protect your teeth with Pitt Street Dental

Here at Pitt Street Dental in Sydney, we offer a wide range of options when it comes to tooth fillings and cracking repairs. And, once one of our highly trained dentists has completed your tooth filling, we’ll provide you with comprehensive aftercare instructions. If you’re in need of a tooth filling or repair, book a cosmetic dentistry appointment at Pitt Street Dental Centre today.