FAQs about dental care

How often should I visit the dentist?

We are b believers in prevention and recommend that everyone has a check-up every six months and a minimum of two trips a year to the hygienist. We’re concerned about the health of your gums and teeth. Our dentists are trained to spot oral cancer signs, which, if caught early has a 90% cure rate.

At what age should children start to visit the dentist?

It is generally recommended that a child should be seen by a dentist by the age of one or within six months after the child’s first tooth appears. The British Dental Association recommends that this first visit should take place as early as possible so that the child gets used to the sights and sounds of the dental practice. It is imperative to bring parents along their child’s journey, educating both about good dental hygiene so that the child develops good habits from the start.

Does teeth whitening cause damage?

It is very important that teeth whitening is done by a registered dentist as this will ensure that it is a safe process. At elleven we offer either home bleaching or in-chair whitening and your dentist will explain both processes to you in detail.

Will a visit to the dentist hurt?

Modern dentistry has progressed hugely in the area of pain relief and latest technology equipment. We understand people have a real phobia about the sounds, smells and feelings of dental visits from their childhood, and strive to change perceptions allowing you to enjoy the experience and the patient care at elleven.

When would I need to see a periodontist?

A periodontist is a specialist that treats gum disease. If you have swollen or bleeding gums, bad breath and/or mobile teeth your dentist should recommend you to see a specialist periodontist who will assess you and treat the affected areas preventing the spread of periodontal disease to other healthy teeth. The periodontist works very closely with a hygienist who you will need to see regularly.

What are dental implants?

Dental implants can be a single tooth or multiple teeth that are fixed into healthy bone by way of a titanium screw. This is a great permanent solution to missing teeth. Dental implants can only be provided in patients over 18 years who are fit and healthy non-smokers.

FAQs about orthodontics

Why do I need orthodontics?

Orthodontics are the geometry of teeth. A dentist may refer a patient for orthodontic treatment for a variety of reasons: crowding, spacing, profile, impacted, missing or drifted teeth or crossbite – but the common factor is that your teeth need to move position through the use of braces.

Can anybody be treated using orthodontic braces?

Yes, and at any age too. Orthodontics is most successful when carried out in children whose teeth and bones are still actively growing but there has been a big increase in adult orthodontics in recent years.

Why should I see a specialist orthodontist?

A specialist orthodontist has had extra years of training and is the best person to achieve lasting results. It is easier to clean teeth (avoiding decay and gum problems) if they are correctly aligned and it will lead to a more confident, aesthetic smile.

What will happen at the first orthodontic appointment? 

The first appointment will take approximately 30 minutes. A brace will not be fitted at this session but we will assess your problems, discuss the orthodontic treatment plan that will be necessary and the optimum time to start treatment. We will take into account your own concerns, your dental development and your oral hygiene. For those who are ready to start treatment immediately, we will make an appointment to take dental records which includes dental modelling, photographs and possibly some x-rays.

What are the different types of orthodontic braces?

There are two types of orthodontic braces, fixed and removable. Different combinations of braces may be used to treat individual cases. Removable braces such as Invisalign are used for simple treatment, and work by exerting gentle pressure. Fixed braces give more precise guidance and have brackets and bands temporarily attached to the teeth- lingual braces have these fixed behind the teeth so that they are completely hidden and nobody can tell you are wearing braces..

Are braces uncomfortable?

Quite possibly at first, but do not be discouraged. A few hours after fitting your brace your teeth may well feel uncomfortable. This discomfort may last for three to four days and a mild analgesic, such as paracetamol, may be necessary.

How long will treatment take? 

This depends on your age and your bite problem. Most people need to wear their brace for about 12-15 months, but you can make a difference by looking after and wearing your braces properly. We now offer SureSmile at elleven which reduces treatment time by 6-9 months. Broken braces and missed appointments will slow your treatment down. Always remember, this is a team effort and the success and speed of your treatment depends on the partnership between you, the dental nurses and your orthodontist.

How often will I need to visit the orthodontist?

Generally your brace will need adjusting every six to eight weeks.

Do I need to wear a retainer after my treatment is completed?

Yes, after any type of orthodontic treatment, a retainer will be provided. This has to be worn for an indefinite period to prevent any relapse. You will be advised by your orthodontist as to which is suitable for you.

Can I eat normally with braces on?

It is possible to eat normally with a fixed or removable brace but you should ensure that you clean around your braces after eating and avoid things that are very hard or sticky – no crusty baguettes or toffee!!

How can I stop my braces catching?

Use wax on your braces to reduce irritation caused where they may rub on the inside of your cheek.

FAQs about SureSmile

How does the SureSmile robotic wire bending make my treatment more precise?

Instead of your orthodontist bending an archwire by hand, as in conventional treatment, SureSmile technology uses robotic hands to precisely bend archwires to your unique prescription. SureSmile provides maximum control of tooth movement, and this efficiency saves you time in treatment.

How does SureSmile Treatment Planning Software work?

Using SureSmile Treatment Planning Software, your orthodontist can evaluate treatment options, visualize the desired end result and map the path of tooth movement. The plan moves teeth in the most direct path to the target without the need for multiple adjustments. The software also allows your orthodontist to digitally evaluate progress during treatment.

How does the OraScanner work?

The OraScanner is a hand-held device that functions much like a 3-D digital camera, taking pictures of your teeth using flashing white light. The images create a 3-D model in real-time during the scanning procedure.

How much does SureSmile cost?

The cost of orthodontic treatment is determined by your individual orthodontist and depends on many factors, including the complexity of your case.

Is my orthodontist still in control of my SureSmile treatment?

Absolutely. In fact, with SureSmile your orthodontist has even greater control of treatment, thanks to 3D tools and the accuracy they bring to treatment planning.

Is SureSmile treatment really less painful than traditional orthodontic treatment?

The pain patients experience during orthodontic treatment is a result of changes in pressure caused by adjusting wires. Patients who use SureSmile treatment experience less pain, because fewer wire adjustments and changes are required.

Is there a risk of damaging my teeth because they’re moving faster?

SureSmile archwires don’t move teeth any faster than conventional archwires. The time difference is due to the computerised treatment plan, made possible through 3D imaging. Instead of a continually evolving plan with frequent adjustments, your teeth move along a more direct path to their target positions. Your overall treatment is shorter due to the shorter distance the teeth have to travel.

What are SureSmile Shape Memory Alloy archwires?

Orthodontists have used Shape Memory Alloy in straight archwires for the last decade. But until the introduction of our robotic process, they haven’t been able to shape archwires into customised prescriptions because of the high temperature required for bending the alloy. When robotic hands bend the heated alloy material into customised prescriptions, the archwires deliver precise, constant force to move teeth more directly into target positions.

What’s the average length of SureSmile treatment?

In a February 2011 comparison of 7,000 conventionally treated patients to over 40.000 patients treated with SureSmile, results show a reduction in treatment time by an average of 30%. For example, treatments estimated to take two years with traditional orthodontics might take only 12 to 15 months using SureSmile. A number of factors can affect treatment time, and your actual length of treatment may vary.

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