Space Maintainers (Spacer)

Posted by on Jun 27, 2017 in News | Comments Off on Space Maintainers (Spacer)

Children may need space maintainers if they lose a tooth early or have a baby (primary) tooth extracted before the adult tooth is close to erupting.

A space maintainer is an appliance that is custom-made. It can be either removable or cemented in a child’s mouth. Its purpose is to keep the space open to allow the permanent tooth to erupt and come into place. Baby teeth are important to the development of the teeth, jaw bones and muscles and help to guide permanent teeth into position when the baby teeth are lost. If a space is not maintained, then teeth can shift into the open space and can block the adult tooth from erupting into proper position.  Not every child who loses a baby tooth early requires a space maintainer.  However, your dentist can determine if the use of a space maintainer is needed.

Types of Space Maintainers
There are two types of space maintainers:

  1. Removable – removable space maintainers are similar to orthodontic appliances and are usually made of acrylic. In some cases, an artificial tooth may be used to fill a space that must remain open for the unerupted tooth.
  2. Fixed – there are four different kinds of fixed space maintainers: unilateral, crown and loop, distal shoe and lingual.

The unilateral and crown and loop space maintainers are placed on one side of the mouth to hold space open for one tooth. The unilateral space maintainer wraps around the outside of the tooth and is connected to a metal loop that holds the space intact. The crown and loop is an actual crown that covers the tooth and is attached to the loop to ensure there is space for the erupting tooth.

The distal shoe space maintainer is usually used for an unerupted first permanent molar tooth. It is a more complicated space maintainer because the end of the metal is usually inserted into the gum line to keep the open space from closing. A dentist will need to monitor the progress of the erupting permanent molar to make sure it can erupt properly with this space maintainer.

The lingual space maintainer is usually bilateral in nature and may be cemented to molar teeth and connected by a wire on the inside of the lower front teeth. Usually this is used for more than one missing tooth.

Sometimes children may be missing teeth due to congenital diseases and may require a partial denture versus a space maintainer. It is important to meet with your dentist to determine appropriate options.

Wearing the Space Maintainer
Once the space maintainer is made, it may take the child a few days to get accustomed to wearing the appliance whether it is removable or fixed. The dentist should review with the child and parent the proper ways to clean the space maintainer thoroughly in order to keep the gum tissue healthy and free of dental plaque.  Dietary restriction’s may apply.

The child should be seen by the dentist on a regular basis to monitor the progress of treatment with the space maintainer and continue to receive a regular professional cleaning appointment.

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White Filling Or Metal Filling. What Is The Difference?

Posted by on Feb 21, 2017 in News | Comments Off on White Filling Or Metal Filling. What Is The Difference?

Dental Amalgam Fillings

Dental amalgam fillings are sometimes called “silver” fillings. They are the most common type of filling used in Canada today. Because these fillings are silver in colour, they are used to fill back teeth. They are a mix of metals such as mercury, silver, copper and tin.


  • These fillings are the least expensive type of filling.
  • They last a long time.
  • They are easy to put in place; because they are a direct filling, one visit to your dentist will do the job, in most cases.


  • The silver colour may not appeal to people who want a “natural” look.
  • Tiny amounts of mercury are released from the filling when you chew. For most people, this bit of mercury is nothing to worry about. Studies have shown that amalgam fillings do not cause illness. They have been used on people for more than 150 years.
  • Health Canada advises pregnant women in need of a filling to wait until the baby is born before they go ahead with the procedure. Your dentist can suggest other kinds of fillings, if the work is urgent.

2. Cast Gold Fillings

Cast gold fillings are based on a model (or cast) of your tooth. Cast gold fillings are a mixture of gold with other metals such as silver and copper. These other metals make gold fillings more durable.

A cast gold filling is made in a dental lab and sent back to your dentist, who cements it in place in your mouth. You will need at least two visits to the dentist to get the job done. During the first visit, your dentist cleans out all the decay and makes a mold of your tooth. The hole is filled with a temporary filling.

Meanwhile, in a dental lab, the mold of your tooth is used to make a model. A filling that is the same size and shape as your tooth is built, based on the model. When you go back to the dentist a couple of weeks later, the gold filling is cemented in place.


  • Gold is stronger than amalgam.
  • Gold fillings last a long time.


  • Gold costs more than other kinds of fillings.
  • Gold fillings and crowns are indirect fillings, so they require at least two appointments.
  • The gold colour may not appeal to people who want a “natural” look.

1. Composite Fillings

Composite fillings are also called plastic or white fillings. Getting this kind of filling depends on where the tooth is in your mouth. We bite down hard on our back teeth (molars), so a plastic filling may not be a good choice. Talk to your dentist about other options.To place this filling, your dentist cleans all decay from the tooth and puts a glue (or bonding material) on the inside of the hole. Composite resin is put into the hole in thin layers. Each layer gets hard with the help of a special light that your dentist holds over the tooth. When the last layer of the filling is hard, your dentist shapes the filling so it looks and feels natural.Advantages

  • These fillings will be the same colour as your natural teeth.
  • They cost less than gold fillings.
  • They are direct fillings, so they can be done in one appointment, in most cases.


  • This kind of filling can break more easily than amalgam or gold fillings, and may not last as long.
  • Composite fillings cost more than amalgam fillings.
  • Recurrent decay is more of a problem than with amalgam or gold fillings.

2. Porcelain Materials

Porcelain materials are the most common type of dental ceramic used by dentists. They are hard and brittle. Porcelain and metal can be combined to make a strong, tooth-coloured crown.

Dental porcelain is made in a dental lab. Unless you have a bad tooth-grinding habit or some other problem, a combination of porcelain and metal can be used anywhere in the mouth.


  • Dental porcelain is the same colour as natural teeth.
  • These fillings last a long time.


  • For teeth that bite down hard – like molars – ceramics are not a good choice. Fillings can break.
  • They are indirect fillings, so at least two appointments will be needed.
  • They cost more than most other types of fillings.

For more information:

Canadian Dental Association

I Have A Cavity. What are my options?

Posted by on Jan 31, 2017 in News | Comments Off on I Have A Cavity. What are my options?

If you have a cavity and it needs a filling, there are different kinds of fillings to do the job.

Your dentist cares about you and your oral health. If you have any questions or concerns about fillings, talk to your dentist. He or she will advise you on the type of filling that works best in your particular case, and inform you about the aesthetic and cost implications for each type.

There are several different types of fillings that can be used to fill a cavity, but the final decision on which type of filling is placed in your mouth is yours alone.

How Fillings Are Done

To fill a cavity, your dentist may first give you “freezing” (or local anesthetic), so you do not feel any pain. Your dentist then takes out all traces of decay, shapes the hole and fills it.

Most fillings are done in two ways:

  1. Direct Filling – These fillings go right into the cavity, after your dentist has cleaned out the decay. Amalgam (or silver) fillings and plastic (or white) fillings are examples of direct fillings. They harden quickly. Most of the time, you will be able to have a direct filling put in place in one appointment.
  2. Indirect Filling – Examples of this type of filling are crowns (or caps) and inlays. They are custom made in a lab to fit your tooth. Your dentist cements the filling in place. Most indirect fillings take two or more appointments to complete.

Dental amalgam is the best-known direct material. Cast gold alloy is the most durable indirect material. However, ceramics are gaining in popularity because of their longevity relative to other tooth-coloured materials.

Remember, your dentist is interested in you and your oral health. If you are concerned about having any particular dental restorative materials placed in your teeth, talk to your dentist and be a partner in decisions about your oral health care.

Health Canada’s Role

One of Health Canada’s jobs is to make sure that dental fillings and dental tools are safe. CDA supports Health Canada’s role in making sure that Canadians receive the best possible care when they visit their dentist.

For more information:

Canadian Dental Association

Christmas/ Holiday Hours 2016

Posted by on Dec 15, 2016 in News | Comments Off on Christmas/ Holiday Hours 2016

Open Dec.23 9am -3pm

Closed Dec 24, 25, 26

Open Dec. 30 9am- 3pm

Closed Dec 31

Regular business hours resume January 2, 2017

Happy New Year!

Preventative Self Care Can Equal Less Visits To The Dentist

Posted by on Dec 10, 2016 in News | Comments Off on Preventative Self Care Can Equal Less Visits To The Dentist

Good preventive oral care at home can save you moneyit can also save your teeth, freshen your breath, and improve your oral and overall health.

The Six Steps of Preventive Care

  1. Brush at least twice a day.
  2. Floss once a day.
  3. Limit sugary snacks and drinks (including fruit juices).
  4. Don’t smoke or use any tobacco products.
  5. Have an examination as often as is recommended by your dentist. The frequency will be based on your individual needs and the risk of oral diseases.
  6. Have your teeth cleaned and polished as per the schedule recommended by your dentist.

Examinations—Once, Twice or More per Year?

Examinations are an important part of maintaining healthy teeth and gums and the frequency should be determined in consultation with your dentist. Some people need more frequent examinations while others can have a yearly exam.

Back to the Basics—A Refresher on Brushing and Flossing

Brushing and flossing remove the bacteria that promote tooth decay and the plaque that can cause gum disease. A reminder of what works best:

  • Ideally, brush after every meal—but at least twice a day including just before bed.
  • Use a soft-bristle brush with rounded bristles, small enough to reach your back teeth.
  • Use a toothpaste with fluoride—look for the Canadian Dental Association seal.
  • Brush for at least two minutes.
  • Don’t forget to gently brush your tongue.
  • Get a new toothbrush if yours looks worn, is more than three months old, or if you’ve had a cold (bristles can harbour germs that may re-infect you).
  • Flossing is a must—otherwise more than a third of your tooth surface is not getting cleaned.
  • Consider an interdental cleaner or proximal brush for cleaning between your teeth instead of floss if you have wide spaces between your teeth, wear braces, or have had gum surgery.
  • Brushing and flossing aren’t complicated, but technique does matter.

Watch Your Mouth!

Preventive care also means being alert for signs of tooth decay, gum disease, and oral cancer. If you see any of the warning signs listed below, contact your dentist right away.

Tooth Decay

  • sensitivity to heat, cold, sweetness, or pressure

Periodontal Disease (gum disease)

  • red, shiny, puffy, sore, or sensitive gums
  • bleeding when you brush or floss
  • persistent bad breath

Oral Cancer

  • bleeding that you can’t explain
  • open sores that don’t heal within 7 to 10 days
  • white or red patches
  • numbness or tingling
  • small lumps or thickening on your gums, the sides or bottom of your tongue, the floor or roof of your mouth, or the inside of your cheeks

You and Your Dental Team—Working Together

By practising good preventive care at home, you are working together with your dentist to safeguard and improve your oral health.


For more information:

Canadian Dental Association

Dental Insurance. Understanding How It Works.

Posted by on Nov 15, 2016 in News | Comments Off on Dental Insurance. Understanding How It Works.

What is co-payment?

Co-payment—also called co-insurance—is the portion of the bill that is your own responsibility. It’s the most common way for dental plans to limit their costs, thereby providing various plans with an assortment of benefits and price points for the purchaser to choose.

Some plans are also taking other approaches to limit plan spending: setting annual deductibles, capping the dollar amount or limiting the number of visits covered within a year.

How much do I have to pay?

That depends on your plan.

An 80/20 co-payment is common for basic procedures such as x-rays, cleaning, fillings and root canals. This means that the dental plan covers 80% of the bill. A 50/50 co-payment is common for major procedures such as crowns and bridges.

But there are many variations; be sure to check your specific plan.

Can my dentist waive my co-payment?

No. The waiving of a co-payment is insurance fraud and is against the law. Your dentist could be heavily fined or even lose their license.

When you and your dentist sign the claim form that goes to the insurance company, you are stating which services were provided and how much, in total, was charged. The insurance company pays its share based upon the assumption that you will do the same.

If you have questions about your insurance policy you can call your insurance provider directly for clarification.  Our office will also be happy to call on your behalf.

For more information:

Canadian Dental Association

Dental Bridges

Posted by on Nov 1, 2016 in News | Comments Off on Dental Bridges

What Is A Dental Bridge

A bridge, also called a “fixed bridge” or a “fixed dental prosthesis,” is a dental restoration that replaces one or more missing teeth. It extends across an area that has no teeth and is typically made up of an artificial tooth fused between 2 crowns. (A crown is a hollow, artificial tooth that fits over a natural tooth or a dental implant). The bridge is held firmly in place by your own teeth on each side of the missing one(s) or by dental implants. A bridge is permanent and cannot be removed.

Dental Bridge Procedure

  1. If you have healthy teeth on each side of a missing tooth (or teeth), your dentist files down the 2 healthy teeth to prepare them for the bridge. If you don’t have healthy teeth or enough teeth to support a bridge, then dental implants may be surgically placed. A dental implant is an artificial root made of titanium metal that is inserted into the jawbone to replace the root of the natural tooth. The implant acts as an anchor to hold an artificial tooth or bridge in place.
  2. Next, your dentist makes a model of your teeth by taking impressions (molds). The model is used to custom-make the artificial tooth (or teeth) and 2 crowns as one piece. This piece is called a bridge.
  3. Meanwhile your dentist places a temporary bridge in your mouth to protect the exposed teeth and gums.
  4. During your second visit, your dentist removes the temporary bridge and places the custom made bridge in your mouth. The crowns are either cemented to your 2 healthy teeth or attached to your dental implants on each side of the missing tooth (or teeth).

Types Of Dental Bridges

There are different types of dental bridges. Your dentist or prosthodontist will recommend the most appropriate one depending on the location of the missing tooth (or teeth) and the condition of your teeth, mouth and gums.

Traditional bridges are used if there are natural teeth on each side of the gap where the tooth is missing. (As an alternative to a bridge, your dentist may suggest a single implant to replace a missing tooth between 2 healthy teeth. An implant will prevent you from having to get your healthy teeth filed down in preparation for the crowns.)

Bridge 1

With a traditional bridge, healthy teeth on each side of the missing tooth are prepared for crowns.

Bridge 2

The custom-made artificial tooth is fused to 2 crowns. This is called a bridge.

Bridge 3

A bridge is permanent and cannot be removed.

Implant bridges are used if you don’t have healthy teeth or enough teeth to support a bridge, or when several or all teeth are missing. A custom-made bridge is anchored to the dental implants. Your dentist will first determine if dental implants are right for you.

Implant 00

With an implant bridge, dental implants are surgically placed into the jawbone.

Implant 0

A custom-made bridge is anchored to the dental implants.

Implant 4

Implant bridges can be used when all your teeth are missing.

Resin-bonded bridges, also known as “Maryland” bridges, are used when the missing teeth are in the front of the mouth. This type of bridge involves the artificial teeth being fused together to metal bands and cemented to the back of your natural teeth.

Cantilever bridges are used when there are healthy teeth on only one side of the missing tooth or teeth. This procedure involves anchoring the artificial tooth over one or more of your natural adjacent teeth.

Caring For Your Bridge

If you take good care of your bridge, it should generally last for about 10 years, or perhaps longer. Like natural teeth, bridges need to be brushed and flossed every day. Your dentist will show you how to use a floss threader to floss under and around the artificial tooth (or teeth) in the middle of the bridge. Regular dental visits and professional cleanings are also important. If you have an implant bridge, your dentist will show you how to properly care for them.

For more information:

Canadian Dental Association

Gum Disease And Your Overall Health

Posted by on Nov 1, 2016 in News | Comments Off on Gum Disease And Your Overall Health

Gum Disease And Overall Health Effects

Gum disease may be a risk factor for a number of serious health conditions such as heart disease and stroke, phenomena and other respiratory diseases, diabetes and premature or low birth weight babies.
If you have gum disease, the bacteria from swollen or bleeding gums can travel through the bloodstream, potentially worsening or causing other types of health problems.

How Gum Disease Develops

Gum disease starts with the formation of hard and soft deposits on the surface of the teeth. Over time, a buildup of bacteria called plaque collects at the gum line, eventually hardening on the teeth into deposits called calculus or tartar.

Without proper oral care, these bacteria can cause inflammation of the gums (gingivitis), penetrate the gum line and finally spread into the underlying bone (periodontitis).

If left untreated, the infection can eventually lead to shrinking and/or swelling, bleeding gums, loose teeth, abscesses and, ultimately, loss of teeth.

What You Can Do

If you have gum disease and/or are at risk for heart disease, stroke or respiratory diseases, it is particularly important to pay attention to your oral health. With regular, proper home and professional oral care, gum disease can be controlled and further progression stopped.

FACT: Statistics show that as many as 75 percent of adults over the age of 30 may suffer from some degree of gum disease. It’s the most common disease of humans.

Root Canal Procedure

Posted by on Oct 11, 2016 in News | Comments Off on Root Canal Procedure

When the nerve of your tooth becomes infected, a successful root canal treatment lets you keep the tooth rather than having to pull it out. Keeping your tooth helps to prevent your other teeth from drifting out of line and causing jaw problems. Saving a natural tooth avoids having to replace it with an artificial tooth.

What is root canal treatment?

Root canal treatment, also known as endodontic treatment, is the process of removing infected, injured or dead pulp from your tooth. The space inside the hard layers of each tooth is called the root canal system. This system is filled with soft dental pulp made up of nerves and blood vessels that help your tooth grow and develop.

Image: Root Canal 1
A healthy tooth.

When bacteria (germs) enter your tooth through deep cavities, cracks or flawed fillings, your tooth can become abscessed. An abscessed tooth is a tooth with an infection in the pulp. If pulp becomes infected, it needs to be removed. An abscessed tooth may cause pain and/or swelling. Your dentist may notice the infection from a dental x-ray or from other changes with the tooth. If left untreated, an abscessed tooth can cause serious oral health problems.

An abscessed tooth
An abscessed tooth.

Who does this procedure?

Your dentist may do root canal treatment or refer you to an endodontist. An endodontist is a dentist who has completed a university post-graduate specialty program in endodontics. Endodontics is a specialty of dentistry concerned with the treatment of the dental pulp or nerve of the tooth.

If your child’s primary (baby) tooth is damaged, your dentist may refer you to a pediatric dentist for this procedure. A pediatric dentist has at least 2 years of extra university training in treating children.

How is a root canal treatment done?

  1. The dentist gives you a local anesthetic (freezing).
  2. To protect your tooth from bacteria in your saliva during the treatment, the dentist places a rubber dam around the tooth being treated.
  3. The dentist makes an opening in the tooth to reach the root canal system and the damaged pulp.
  4. Using very fine dental instruments, the dentist removes the pulp by cleaning and enlarging the root canal system.
  5. After the canal has been cleaned, the dentist fills and seals the canal.
  6. The opening of the tooth is then sealed with either a temporary or permanent filling.
The damaged pulp is removed
The damaged pulp is removed.
The root canals are filled and sealed
The root canals are filled and sealed.


Tooth restoration after root canal treatment

After a root canal treatment, your tooth has to be restored (fixed) to look, feel and work as much like a natural tooth as possible. If an endodontist performed your root canal treatment, he or she will fill the opening of the tooth with a temporary filling and send you back to your dentist or prosthodontist for tooth restoration.

A prosthodontist is a dental specialist who restores and replaces teeth using crowns, bridges, dentures and implants. Your dentist or specialist may use a permanent filling or a crown to restore your tooth. The choice of restoration will depend on the strength of the part of the tooth that’s left. A back tooth will likely need a crown because chewing puts a great deal of force on back teeth. If there is not enough of the tooth left, posts may be used to help support the crown.

The tooth is prepared for a crown. Posts are used to help support the crown.
The tooth is prepared for a crown.
Posts are used to help support the crown.
The crown is cemented into place
The crown is cemented into place.


What else should I know?

Root canal treatment may be done in 1 or 2 appointments. After root canal treatment, your tooth may be tender for the first week or two. Bad pain or swelling are NOT common. If this happens, call your dentist or endodontist.

You can still get a cavity or gum disease after a root canal treatment. Root canal treatment does not protect your tooth from other types of damage. With proper care and regular dental visits, the tooth could last as long as your other teeth. Most of the time, a tooth that has had a root canal treatment can be saved. However, there are cases where everything possible has been done to save a tooth and still the tooth must be extracted (pulled).

Root canal retreatment

Most root canal treatments are successful. But in some rare cases, a second root canal treatment is needed. This is called retreatment. When retreating a tooth, the root canal filling material is taken out, and the canal is recleaned, reshaped and refilled.

Root canal surgery

Sometimes root canal surgery is needed when a regular root canal treatment cannot be done or when it has not worked. Surgery is done to:

  • Check the end of the root for fractures (cracks).
  • Remove parts of the root that could not be cleaned during regular root canal treatment.
  • Clear up an infection that did not heal after regular treatment.

Causes of Bad Breath

Posted by on Sep 20, 2016 in News | Comments Off on Causes of Bad Breath

Causes of Bad Breath

  1. Poor oral hygiene
  2. Periodontal (gum) disease
  3. Smoking
  4. Dry mouth
  5. Alcohol
  6. Recreational drugs
  7. Foods (onions, garlic, coffee, etc…)
  8. Dehydration
  9. Poor diet
  10. Sinus/nasal infection
  11. Lung disease
  12. Respiratory infection
  13. Throat infection
  14. Diabetes
  15. Heart burn
  16. Liver Disease
  17. Intestinal infection
  18. Poor intestinal Bacteria
  19. Acid reflex/GERD
  20. Kidney disease

What to do

  1. Consult with your doctor to see if you have an undiagnosed medical condition that may be causing bad breath.  Some prescribed medications can cause dry mouth which can lead to bad breath.
  2. Book an appointment with your dentist or dental hygienist for a dental cleaning.  At this appointment your oral self care and diet can be reviewed.
  3. Make life style changes: brush and floss daily, quit smoking, limit alcohol consumption, be mindful of foods that cause bad breath and drink plenty of water.