FAQs

Below are some of the most frequently asked questions patients have about dentistry and oral health issues.
Detailed information about different procedures is also readily available throughout the website but if you have any specific questions please feel free to contact our friendly reception staff, we would love to hear from you.
If you wish to, please make a list of questions to ask your dentist. Then you can either call to make an appointment or make a reservation through our ‘ appointment facility’.

What sets you apart from other dentists in Perth?

Patient comfort combined with professional, state-of-the-art dental services at affordable fees are factors that set Spring Orchid Dental apart.

As one of the most progressive and diverse dental practices in the region, Spring Orchid Dental is also one of the most welcoming and comfortable. We combine the latest technology with the best people, and the most advanced techniques with the finest service and care. At all times we strive for technical excellence in the treatment and treatment options we provide whilst providing you with exceptional care and comfort.

While our experienced dentists, state-of-the-art equipment and international standard practice ensure a remarkable smile; our friendly, respectful staff, complimentary refreshments, free oral hygiene packs and post-treatment care deliver what many think is impossible – an enjoyable visit to the dentist!

Dental emergencies

What do I do if my child knocks their tooth out?

Immediate management will optimise the rate of success in all dental trauma cases. Always attempt to retrieve the tooth if it has been knocked out completely. If emergency medical help is at hand ie. first aid at a sports carnival, consult them for help.

  • First determine whether it is an adult or baby tooth.
  • In the case of a baby tooth being knocked out, do not replace the tooth into the socket. Keep the tooth if you can find it and contact us for an emergency appointment, simply to ensure that it is in fact a baby tooth, the surrounding teeth remain sound and, the soft tissue damage is not severe.
  • In the case of a dislodged adult tooth. If the tooth can be retrieved and is not contaminated, replace the tooth in the socket as soon as possible – ensure you have it the right way round! If the tooth has been contaminated with debris, rinse for ten seconds under cool running water and replace the tooth in the socket. In either case contact us immediately for an emergency dental visit as soon as possible.
  • If the tooth can not be repositioned at the time of the accident. Keep the tooth stored in whole milk or alternatively tucked in the cheek of the patient, careful not to swallow the tooth, and contact us immediately for an emergency dental visit.

If the tooth is partially dislodged, and no longer in its normal position, contact us as soon as possible for an emergency dental appointment. Any delay in treatment will negatively affect the chances of success.

What do I do if my temporary crown comes off?

A temporary crown is a provisional cover that protects the underlying tooth structure from sensitivity while the permanent crown is being made. In addition to this the temporary crown keeps the relationship of the surrounding teeth in place so no tooth movement can occur.

To avoid any movement of the adjacent teeth or tissues we strongly recommend a lost temporary is replaced as soon as possible.

What do I do in case of a dental emergency?

Dental emergencies should be addressed at the earliest possible convenience and are best managed by your dentist. Delaying treatment may not only make it more complex, but may also unnecessarily increase your discomfort. If your dental emergency occurs within office hours, contact us to ensure prompt management of your concern. For after hours emergency treatment, we provide an on-call service where we will endeavour to accomplish pain relief and provide advice. In extreme cases, especially severe facial swelling, management by a hospital emergency department may be required.

Do I really need x-rays? Aren’t they harmful?

Dental X-rays serve as an essential diagnostic tool, providing your dentist with information that otherwise would be impossible to ascertain. Due to advances in technology, dental X-rays deliver radiation at very low doses which is localised to the area of the dental film. Dental X-rays may be required at your first visit to our practice, if you present with an emergency dental complaint, or periodically to compare to baseline records. Several types of dental X-rays are available, all used for different purposes. Information obtainable from such films include an overview of the jaw and jaw joint, bone levels surrounding the teeth, areas of decay or infection and, location or presence of teeth.

How can I tell if I have gingivitis or periodontitis (gum disease)?

Four out of five people have periodontal disease and don’t know it! Most people are not aware of it because the disease is usually painless in the early stages. Unlike tooth decay, which often causes discomfort, it is possible to have periodontal disease without noticeable symptoms. Having regular dental check-ups and periodontal examinations are very important and will help detect if periodontal problems exist.

Periodontal disease begins when plaque, a sticky, colorless, film of bacteria, food debris, and saliva, is left on the teeth and gums. The bacteria produce toxins (acids) that inflame the gums and slowly destroy the bone. Brushing and flossing regularly and properly will ensure that plaque is not left behind to do its damage.

Other than poor oral hygiene, there are several other factors that may increase the risk of developing periodontal disease:

  • Smoking or chewing tobacco – Tobacco users are more likely than non-users to form plaque and tartar on their teeth.
  • Certain tooth or appliance conditions – Bridges that no longer fit properly, crowded teeth, or defective fillings that may trap plaque and bacteria.
  • Many medications – Steroids, cancer therapy drugs, blood pressure meds, oral contraceptives. Some medications have side affects that reduce saliva, making the mouth dry and plaque easier to adhere to the teeth and gums.
  • Pregnancy, oral contraceptives, and puberty – Can cause changes in hormone levels, causing gum tissue to become more sensitive to bacteria toxins.
  • Systemic diseases – Diabetes, blood cell disorders, HIV / AIDS, etc.
  • Genetics may play role – Some patients may be predisposed to a more aggressive type of periodontitis. Patients with a family history of tooth loss should pay particular attention to their gums.

Signs and Symptoms of Periodontal Disease

  • Red and puffy gums– Gums should never be red or swollen.
  • Bleeding gums– Gums should never bleed, even when you brush vigorously or use dental floss.
  • Persistent bad breath– Caused by bacteria in the mouth.
  • New spacing between teeth– Caused by bone loss.
  • Loose teeth– Also caused by bone loss or weakened periodontal fibers (fibers that support the tooth to the bone).
  • Pus around the teeth and gums– Sign that there is an infection present.
  • Receding gums– Loss of gum around a tooth.
  • Tenderness or Discomfort– Plaque, calculus, and bacteria irritate the gums and teeth.

Good oral hygiene, a balanced diet, and regular dental visits can help reduce your risk of developing periodontal disease.

Is there a correlation between heart disease and periodontal disease?

Many people are unaware that having periodontal disease (the destruction of gum tissue and bone that hold our teeth in place) can affect your overall health.

Periodontal disease is one of the most common infections – often more prevalent than the common cold! Periodontal disease is not only the number one reason people lose teeth; it can also affect the health of your body!

Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection, and in its earliest stages, it’s called gingivitis. It starts when an accumulation of plaque (a colony of bacteria, food debris, and saliva) is NOT regularly removed from the gums and teeth. The bacteria in plaque produce toxins/acids that irritate and infect the gums, eventually destroying the jaw bone that supports the teeth. When periodontal disease is not treated it can eventually lead to tooth loss!

There are numerous studies that have looked into the correlation between gum disease and major medical conditions. These studies suggest people with periodontal disease are at a greater risk of systemic disease. They also indicate that periodontal disease can allow oral bacteria to enter the bloodstream and travel to major organs, beginning new infections. Research suggests that periodontal bacteria in the blood stream can:

  • Contribute to the development of heart disease
  • Increase the risk of stroke
  • Compromise the health of those that have diabetes or respiratory diseases
  • Increase a woman’s risk of having a preterm, low-birth weight baby

While there is still much research to be done in order to fully understand the link between periodontal disease and systemic diseases, research has shown that infections in the mouth can wreak havoc elsewhere in the body.

To ensure a healthy, disease-free mouth, we recommend the importance of regular dental check-ups and cleanings, which include a periodontal evaluation. Also, diligent home care and a proper diet can help reduce plaque and bacteria in the mouth.

Remember the mouth body connection! Taking care of your oral health can contribute to your overall medical health!

What is periodontal disease and how can I avoid it?

Periodontal disease is also known as gum disease and often begins as gingivitis. Periodontal disease in its early stages is characterised by red, swollen or puffy gums which can often bleed upon brushing of flossing. Periodontal disease is cause by bacteria called ‘plaque’ covering your teeth and penetrating the gum line. Factors such as diabetes, stress, pregnancy and some medications can also increase the likelihood of developing gum disease. Contact our dentist if you feel like you may be suffering from gum disease.

Why do my gums bleed?

The most common cause of bleeding gums is plaque build-up on the teeth, resulting in gum inflammation (gingivitis).
Bleeding gums is usually a sign that your oral hygiene technique may need some improvement.
If your gums are bleeding, try brush to the gum line of every tooth twice daily and floss once a day.
Bleeding gums may also be a result of gum disease (periodontitis) or other less common causes.

Please book an appointment for a check up and clean so that we can assess the health of the gums.

Restoration

Are amalgam (silver) fillings safe?

Over the years, there has been some concern about the safety of amalgam (silver) fillings. An amalgam is a blend of copper, silver, tin, and zinc, bound by elemental mercury. Dentists have used this blended metal to fill teeth for more than 100 years. The controversy is due to claims that the exposure to the vapor and minute particles from the mercury can cause a variety of health problems.

According to the American Dental Association (ADA), up to 76% of dentists use silver containing mercury to fill teeth. The ADA also states that silver fillings are safe and that studies have failed to find any link between silver containing mercury and any medical disorder.

The general consensus is that amalgam (silver) fillings are safe. Along with the ADA’s position, the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the World Health Organization, the FDA, and others support the use of silver fillings as safe, durable, and cost effective. The U.S. Public Health Service says that the only reason not to use silver fillings is when a patient has an allergy to any component of this type of filling. The ADA has had fewer than 100 reported incidents of an allergy to components of silver fillings, and this is out of the millions of silver fillings placed over the decades.

Although studies indicate that there are no measurable health risks to patients who have silver fillings, we do know that mercury is a toxic material when we are exposed at high, unsafe levels. For instance, we have been warned to limit the consumption of certain types of fish that carry high levels of mercury in them. However, with respect to amalgam fillings, the ADA maintains that when the mercury combines with the other components of the filling, it becomes an inactive substance that is safe.

There are numerous alternatives to silver fillings, including composite (tooth-colored), porcelain, and gold fillings. We encourage you to discuss these options with your dentist so you can determine which option is best for you.

Can dental plates be adjusted?

Depending on the damage, it is usually possible to adjust or fix dentures quickly and easily. Spring Orchid Dental can also offer same-day emergency dentures and repairs when necessary.
Do you do implants?

Yes. Our dental implant procedures can be used to replace a single tooth, several teeth, or to fabricate an implant-supported denture or bridge. Unlike a conventional crown or bridge, a dental implant replaces both the tooth and its root. It looks and feels natural, and it’s strong and durable.

The dental implant doesn’t rely on surrounding teeth for support, and no healthy tooth structure has to be lost in the process.

Does Insurance Cover the Cost of Dental Implants?

In general, dental implants are not covered by dental insurance at this time. Coverage under your medical plan may be possible, depending on the insurance plan and/or cause of tooth loss. Detailed questions about your individual needs and how they relate to insurance should be discussed with your dentist and insurance provider.

For appointment from our Implant Specialist call us !

How long will my crown last?

With the recommend care and maintenance your crown will last many years. We recommend regular continuing care and good oral hygiene between visits. In some cases we will recommend a splint to further protect extensive crown work.

How long will my new dental work last for?

This really depends on many factors, mainly biological. Scientific studies tell us that ceramic treatments can last anywhere from 10 to 15 years. However, teeth that are crowned and veneered can still decay underneath if they are not properly cleaned and looked after. Diet can also play a big role, with high acid and sugar diets creating problems. For these reasons it is very important that you keep up your regular maintenance visits so that the teeth and gums can be thoroughly checked and cleaned, prolonging the lifespan of your dental work.

Porcelain crowns and veneers do NOT stain and will NOT change colour, however those who have had their natural teeth whitened need to be aware that results WILL fade over time and will require some maintenance in the future.

In patients with a very heavy bite, and those who grind or clench their teeth (particularly at night whilst sleeping), ceramic work can become damaged in the same way as natural tooth enamel. For this reason it is important to identify these types of habits beforehand, so that measures can be taken to protect the teeth, ensuring your work lasts as long as possible.

How many visits will my dental crown take?

Treatment appointments are typically broken up into 2 separate visits. At the first visit, our dentist will prepare the tooth by removing any broken or decayed enamel. He then takes an impression of the tooth as well as the rest of your mouth, to ensure that your new crown will fit and bite in proper alignment with the other teeth in your mouth. These models are sent to our dental laboratory downstairs where a custom Australian made crown is produced according to our Dentists specifications. Within about 2 weeks, your permanent crown will be ready for you to try, and if it fits you’ll have it permanently cemented in place. Your visit is short and very comfortable, and as soon as it is completed you will have a brand new, functioning tooth. We won’t ever rush you out of the office, and you can rest assured that Spring Orchid Dental treatments will give you a reason to smile again.

How much does a Dental Crown Cost?

At Spring Orchid Dental we believe in providing quality Dentistry at an affordable rate. We are proud to offer some of the cheapest crowns within the Bassendean area. The average cost can range between $1500 and $2500. Please check our Promotions for information on our current offers.

How often should dentures be replaced?

A new set of dentures is recommended every 5-7 years because of changes that can occur with the shape of your mouth and jaw. It is important to remember to receive regular bi-annual check-ups to detect any potential problems before they become serious.

If I have one tooth missing?

There are a range of treatment options to suit any budget. From the very simple removable plate to the brand new tooth feel of a dental implant. In all options we aim for maximum longevity and cosmetic appeal. Pop in for a quick chat to see what is available to you.

I have small, gapped teeth, is there a way to fix this?

Yes, small, gapped chipped or worn teeth can be fixed by a few cosmetic procedures. One effective one is porcelain of composite veneers which are thin shells, placed over your existing teeth to enhance their appearance. Additionally crowns may also be suitable. If you are interested in either of these options, contact our experienced dentists for a consultation.

My dentures are uncomfortable, what can I do?

Most denture wearers experience similar problems with their dentures particularly the lower denture. Loose ill fitting dentures that move around when eating, rub, fall down and are generally uncomfortable. This leads to frustration, embarrassment and anxiety due to a lack of confidence in their dentures.

Today we can offer a real alternative to these problems with the use of a very simple implant procedure to enable your dentures the stability they need to be truly functional. One of our dentists will be happy to discuss this treatment option with you and discuss the advantages of “snap-on” dentures.

What are my options if I have missing teeth?

With many state-of-the-art dental treatments and prevention options available in dentistry today, there are fewer reasons for having to extract (remove) teeth. When something does go wrong with a tooth, we try to do everything possible to restore the tooth to its original function. Removing a tooth is the last option because we know that removal may lead to severe and costly dental and cosmetic problems if the tooth is not replaced.

Losing a tooth can be a very traumatic experience and it’s very unfortunate when it does happen. Injury, accident, fracture, severe dental decay, and gum disease are the major reasons for having to remove a tooth. If teeth are lost due to injury or have to be removed, it is imperative that they be replaced to avoid cosmetic and dental problems in the future.

When a tooth is lost, the jaw bone that helped support that tooth begins to atrophy, causing the teeth on either side to shift or tip into the open space of the lost tooth. Also, the tooth above or below the open space will start to move towards the open space because there is no opposing tooth to bite on. These movements may create problems such as decay, gum disease, excessive wear on certain teeth, and TMJ (jaw joint) problems. These problems and movements do not result immediately, but will eventually appear, compromising your chewing abilities, the health of your bite, and the beauty of your smile.

Options for replacement of missing teeth:
  • Removable bridges – This type of bridge is a good solution for replacing one or more missing teeth, especially in complex dental situations where other replacement options are not possible. They are usually made of tooth-colored, artificial teeth combined with metal clasps that hook onto adjacent natural teeth. Removable bridges are the most economical option for replacing missing teeth but might be the least aesthetically pleasing. This is because the metal clasps on the appliances are often impossible to completely conceal.
  • Fixed bridges – This type of bridge is generally made of porcelain or composite material and is permanently anchored (cemented) to a natural tooth adjacent to the missing tooth site. The benefit of this type of bridge is that it is fixed (not removable), and it is very sturdy. The disadvantage is that in order to create a fixed appliance, two healthy, natural teeth will have to be crowned (capped) to hold the bridge in place.
  • Dentures – This type of tooth replacement is used when most or all of the natural teeth are missing in one dental arch. Dentures are removable artificial teeth that are made to closely resemble the patient’s original teeth.
  • Implants – Are a great way to replace one or more missing teeth. They can also provide great support for ill-fitting dentures. A dental implant is an artificial root that is surgically placed into the jaw bone to replace a missing tooth. An artificial tooth is placed on the implant, giving the appearance and feel of a natural tooth. Implants are very stable, durable, and are the most aesthetically pleasing tooth replacement option.

If you are missing teeth, ask us if they need replacement and what options are available to you. Together we will select the best replacement option for your particular case.

Prevention and early treatment are always less involved and less costly than delaying treatment and allowing a serious problem to develop.

What do I do if I have a chipped/broken tooth?

First of all, don’t panic. Often a chipped or broken tooth is not a dental emergency, and can usually be repaired.
If you have broken an upper front tooth from trauma, call us as soon as possible as there may be additional problems from the trauma. If you still have the broken piece of tooth, please bring it with you as it may be possible to re-bond the piece back onto the tooth.
Chipped/broken teeth may also be a sign of underlying tooth decay, so please organise an appointment so we can assess your teeth.
We will do our best to fit you in as soon as possible, however there may be a wait depending on the circumstance. The dentist may place a temporary filling initially and get you to return for further treatment – your dentist will discuss this with you.

What do I do if my temporary crown/bridge/inlay/onlay (‘temp’) falls off?

Temps are held on by a weak cement, so it is quite common for temps to fall off.
Your temp not only protects the tooth, but also helps stop other teeth from moving while you wait for your final product.
If your temp falls off please make an appointment for it to be re-cemented.

What is a dental implant and how can it benefit me?

Dental implants are essentially replacement tooth roots which provide a strong foundation for permanent or removable replacement teeth that can be made to match your smile. Dental implants are a permanent solution that will mimic your natural teeth and provide a fully functional replacement for missing teeth. Looking and feeling natural; dental implants can give you something to smile about.

Dental Crowns and Teeth Caps

A dental crown is a tooth-shaped “cap” that is placed over a tooth covering the tooth to restore its shape, size, strength, and to improve its appearance. When the crowns are cemented into place it fully encases the entire visible portion of a tooth that lies at and above the gum line.

Are there any risks involved?

If tooth decay is right next to the pulp, the pulp may not be strong enough to make healthy dentin. If this happens, the pulp may need to be removed by a participating dentist or endodontist, or the whole root may have to be removed by an oral surgeon.

Some dental procedures can cause bacteria in the mouth to enter the bloodstream and cause infections in other parts of the body. People who have difficulty fighting off infections may need to take antibiotics before and after dental surgery. Such people include those who:

  • Were born with heart defects.
  • Have damaged or artificial heart valves.
  • Have liver disease (cirrhosis).
  • Have an impaired immune system.
  • Have a history of bacterial endocarditis.
  • Have artificial joints, such as a hip that has been replaced.
What restorative options are available?

There are many restorative options available to help you achieve the smile you would like. Spring Orchid Dental our experienced dentist will discuss with you entire options and help tailor your personal treatment plan that provides the best outcome related to your individualised goals.

Who makes my dentures? A dentist, or a Dental Prosthetist?

A Dental Prosthetist is the best choice when it comes to broken teeth repair and dentures. They are specialists in the fit and construction of false teeth, and will work with you through all stages of the process to ensure the best fit and look possible

Children dentistry

Do you see children?

Yes. We are happy to see children, in fact, many of our younger patients are now parents themselves and bring their children to see us as well. We see many family members who go back several generations. We firmly believe in building lasting relationships with our patients and their families. We’ve got a great team of dentists and staff to make coming to the dentist fun.

How often should my children visit the dentist?

The general industry recommendation is every 6 months, and this is particularly true while the teeth and mouth are still developing.
At what age do I start bringing my child to the dentist?
The Australian Dental Association recommends a child’s first check-up at 1 year of age. We recommend you bring your child with you from an early age preferably within 6 months of the first tooth appearing. Often young children are not very cooperative at that age, but they can still be brought along to parents’ appointments to gain familiarity with the environment.
Initially, this can be done when attending your regular appointment. This way your child becomes accustomed to coming to the dentist and, when they’re old enough, have a ride in the chair and see pictures of their teeth on screen.
From around age 3 years most children are cooperative for a full check of the teeth.
Early dental visits are essential to preventing dental problems. Starting at an early age when no treatment is needed also helps to form good dental habits and reduce the risk of dental phobias developing.
It is important to check your child’s teeth at home. If you notice any abnormalities such as white patches, dark spots or holes in the teeth then please book an appointment for assessment.

When should I start brushing my child’s teeth?

As soon as teeth appear, a baby toothbrush with tap water should be used at night after the last feed. Children’s (low fluoride) toothpaste can be introduced at 18 months and brushing should increase to twice daily by 3 years of age. As their manual dexterity is still developing, children require assistance with brushing and flossing until about 8 years of age.

Wisdom teeth

Do you remove wisdom teeth?

Yes we do remove wisdom teeth. There is a big variation in the degree of difficulty associated with the removal of individual wisdom teeth, which can be determined by your dentist. In particular cases there may be an argument for referral to an oral surgeon for treatment either under local or general anaesthetic. When deemed suitable for removal by your dentist, the procedure is often simple and made as comfortable as possible with the use of adequate anaesthesia and relative analgesia or “happy gas” where required.

Cosmetic dentistry

Are amalgam fillings bad for you?

There has been a lot of publicity regarding the health effects of amalgam fillings. The World Health Organisation and the International Dental Federation have jointly confirmed the safety of amalgam for dental treatment. Amalgam restorations are a viable long lasting option in certain cases where “white fillings” are not recommended. Replacement of amalgam restorations though not essential, may be indicated in cosmetic areas, due to recurrent decay, failure of the filling or the tooth.

Can I make my teeth straight?

As an adult or a child misaligned or crooked teeth can be corrected. For children we find that intercepting problems early on can reduce the need for removal of teeth and create a wide beautiful smile, a wonderful investment in the future. As an adult we can use Invisalign to correct the position of teeth that are out of alignment and routine orthodontics is also available for teenagers and adults

Candidates for whitening treatment?

In order to receive whitening treatments, you must have good oral health. Any issues with cavities or gum disease will need to be addressed prior to starting treatment. In addition, patients with multiple restorations such as crowns or fillings may not be good candidates, as restorations do not respond to whitening treatments.

*For patients under 18, a consulting with your health care professional is recommended.

To learn more about the best method for whitening your teeth, contact Spring Orchid Dental today.

Do you offer Orthodontic treatment?

Orthodontics is a highly specialised branch of cosmetic dentistry, concerned with straightening crooked or misaligned teeth. At Spring Orchid Dental we are proud to provide orthodontic treatment to our patients and are proud of the dramatic results patients are experiencing. Recent technological advances and changes in bracket design have made orthodontic treatment more comfortable and efficient, so that desired outcomes are achieved in much shorter treatment periods. We offer our patients the following Orthodontic treatments: Braces and Invisalign.

How can cosmetic dentistry treatments change my smile?

With the treatments offered by modern cosmetic dentistry, it is now possible to not only maintain your smile for health, but also improve your overall appearance and enhance your self-image and confidence. Simple and effective cosmetic dentistry treatments, such as tooth whitening and veneers, offer a virtually pain free, effective option which can change your life. We provide the following cosmetic dentistry treatments: Dentures, crown and bridge work, ceramic crowns, porcelain veneers, teeth bleaching, composite bonding, replacing old stained resin fillings.

How do I make my teeth whiter?

There are many ways to make teeth whiter, from the very simple yet effective home bleaching to more complex procedures involving veneers and crowns. Bleaching is used when the shape and position of the teeth is correct and we just want the colour improved. Sometimes just making an appointment for a clean and polish can remove stains that have built up on teeth and in between the teeth. If you are unsure of what you require just make a short consultation appointment and we can discuss the options that would be relevant for you.

I have one discoloured tooth what are my options?

The ultimate treatment choice depends on many things but we have techniques where a single tooth can be lightened in colour to match the adjacent teeth. Placement of a single veneer can improve shape as well as colour and make your tooth blend seamlessly with its neighbours. For a tooth which is dark and out of position a single beautiful all porcelain crown can correct all issues and create a smile that you will be proud of.

I have spaces between my teeth, can these be fixed?
Spaces between teeth can be fixed with orthodontics (tooth movement), veneers, crowns or just addition of bonded materials to close the space. There are many options and the choice of treatment will depend on the position of your teeth, and the needs of your mouth as a whole.

How does Invisalign affect my day-to-day life?
Hardly at all. Invisalign aligners are made of clear material that is virtually invisible on your teeth. Not only is it unnoticeable, Invisalign can also be quickly and easily removed before drinking and eating. You can maintain good oral hygiene by brushing and flossing normally during Invisalign treatment.

Is Invisalign comfortable?
Yes. Compared to traditional braces, Invisalign involves no metal brackets or wires that can irritate your gums or the inside of your mouth. The aligner is custom made to provide a perfect fit for your teeth so there are no painful adjustments. This means that they do not move in your mouth or obstruct your eating, drinking or speech.

Is Invisalign suitable for teenagers?
Absolutely. Invisalign means that the unsightly metal braces that most adults remember from their youth are now a thing of the past. Teenagers can wear Invisalign without the discomfort, restrictions and self-consciousness that come with metal braces. At Dental Care Australia, we will carefully assess each teen patient to determine which treatment option, the adult or teenager Invisalign, better suits his or her individual needs.

Does Invisalign involve any risks?
Invisalign is a very safe way to correct misaligned teeth. In the beginning of the treatment, your teeth or gums may feel slightly sore as you become accustomed to the aligner. This feeling typically doesn’t last long. To achieve the desired results, you must wear the Invisalign aligner consistently every day and night. While most people will benefit from using Invisalign, some major orthodontic or jaw alignment problems require more extensive treatment. At Spring Orchid Dental, we will help you determine which treatment option works best for you.

I want to use Invisalign to straighten my teeth. Where do I begin?
Start by calling Spring Orchid Dental or make an appointment with our Dentists. After the initial consultation we will take impressions of your teeth. These impressions will be used to manufacture your unique, personalised Invisalign aligners. Once you begin wearing Invisalign, you are just months away from your new, custom made smile.

Is teeth whitening safe?

Yes. When performed by a well trained dental professional, tooth whitening is a safe and easy cosmetic procedure for many people. The degree of whitening achievable is dependant on each individual case, and mild, short term, post operative sensitivity occurs occasionally. However, when used appropriately in combination with remineralising agents suggested by your dentist or hygienist, results are optimised and sensitivity reduced. However it is important to remember that not everyone is a eligible candidate for teeth whitening. If you are interested, contact Spring Orchid Dental and come in for a teeth whitening assessment.

I’ve heard you need to “shave” the teeth down for cosmetic work. Is this true?

Yes, in bigger cosmetic transformation cases that involve crowns and/or veneers, it is unavoidable that the teeth need to be reduced in size in order for the ceramic work to fit over the teeth. However, this reduction is kept minimal wherever possible in order to maintain the strength of the tooth.

In some cases such a “direct veneers” that are made out of composite (white filling material), no tooth reduction is necessary at all. Your dentist will assess your teeth and provide you with all the possible treatment options.

What are the whitening options?

We understand that you have options when it comes to choosing how to whiten your teeth. There are many over the counter options readily available at your local supermarket or chemist, which can be extremely enticing. The problem is with the bleaching agent. Over-the-counter methods do not have the bleaching power of professional methods. There’s a good chance you’ll be disappointed in the results and you will visit our office looking for professional alternatives.

We offer at-home professional whitening kits. You simply wear the custom-made trays for a specified period each day, and after two weeks, you will have a noticeably whiter smile. In addition, you can keep the trays for periodic touch-ups as needed (up to 1 year supply if measured out correctly).

What can be done about old, unattractive, or discolored fillings?

Most of us have fillings in our mouths that date back many years and some may have even been placed during our childhood. These fillings may now be old, dark, and unattractive, making us feel self-conscious when we smile, laugh, and talk. Old fillings are not only unattractive, they may also be defective. When a filling is old, the margins (space between the tooth and filling) may eventually open and allow bacteria and food debris to enter, potentially causing dental decay.

Your dentist can check your fillings and evaluate if they are defective and need replacement. Also, if you simply want to replace fillings that are unattractive, you and your dentist can decide which ones should be replaced first and what replacement options would best suit you. There are many state-of-the-art dental filling materials and procedures available today that are quick, painless, and cost effective for replacing old, unattractive or defective fillings.

Options for replacing old, unattractive, or discoloured fillings:

  • Composite (bonding) fillings – These are tooth-coloured fillings that can be closely matched to the color of your existing teeth. They are particularly well suited for use in front teeth or visible parts of teeth and are one of the best ways to improve the health and beauty of your smile.
  • Crowns (Caps) – These types of restoration are used when a tooth is too damaged and cannot be repaired with a filling or other type of restoration. A crown is a covering that encases the entire tooth surface restoring it to its original shape and size. A crown protects and strengthens the remaining tooth structure and can be made of gold, porcelain, and other tooth-colored materials.
  • Inlays/Onlays – These restorations are custom made fillings. They can be made of composite resin, porcelain or gold and are made by a dental laboratory and placed by a dentist. Inlays/onlays are usually best for the posterior chewing surfaces of teeth and are utilized to conservatively repair teeth that have large defective/unattractive fillings or have been damaged by decay or trauma.
  • Porcelain veneers – Used primarily in the front teeth, veneers are very thin shells of tooth-shaped porcelain that are individually crafted and permanently cemented to the front surface of teeth. They are a great solution for fixing discolored, pitted, shipped, malformed, or slightly crooked teeth. Veneers are also used if you have unwanted spaces. Veneers are very durable, natural looking, and do not stain. This makes veneers a very popular solution for restoring a smile impaired by old, unattractive fillings.

As you can see, there are various options for replacing old, unattractive fillings. These treatments will provide strong, natural, and long-lasting replacement solutions to enhance the health and beauty of your smile.

What can I do about stained or discolored teeth?

Since teeth whitening has now become the number one aesthetic concern of many patients, there are many products and methods available to achieve a brighter smile.

Professional teeth whitening (or bleaching) is a simple, non-invasive dental treatment used to change the color of natural tooth enamel and is an ideal way to enhance the beauty of your smile. Over-the-counter products are also available, but they are much less effective than professional treatments and might not be approved by the American Dental Association (ADA).

As we age, the outer layer of tooth enamel wears away, eventually revealing a darker or yellow shade. The color of our teeth also comes from the inside of the tooth, which can become darker over time. Smoking and fluids such as coffee, tea, and wine can also contribute to tooth discoloration, making teeth yellow and dull. Sometimes, teeth can become discolored from taking certain medications as a child, such as tetracycline. Excessive fluoridation (fluorosis) during tooth development can also cause teeth to become discolored.

It’s important to have your teeth evaluated by your dentist to determine if you’re a good candidate for bleaching. Occasionally, tetracycline and fluorosis stains are difficult to bleach and your dentist may offer other options, such as veneers or crowns to cover up such stains. Since teeth whitening only works on natural tooth enamel, it is also important to evaluate any old fillings, crowns, etc. before bleaching begins. Once the bleaching is done, your dentist can match the new restorations to the shade of the newly whitened teeth.

Since teeth whitening is not permanent, a touch-up may be needed every several years to keep your smile looking bright.

The most widely used professional teeth whitening systems:

  • Home teeth whitening systems: At-home products usually come in a gel form that is placed in a custom-fitted mouthguard (tray), created from a mold of your teeth. The trays are worn either twice a day for approximately 30 minutes, or overnight while you sleep. It usually takes several weeks to achieve the desired results depending on the degree of staining and the desired level of whitening.
  • In office teeth whitening: This treatment is done in the dental office and you will see results immediately. It may require more than one visit with each visit lasting 30 to 60 minutes. While your gums are protected, a bleaching solution is applied to the teeth. A special light may be used to enhance the action of the agent while the teeth are whitened.

Some patients may experience tooth sensitivity after having their teeth whitened. This sensation is temporary and subsides shortly after you complete the bleaching process, usually within a few days to one week.

Teeth whitening can be very effective and can give you a brighter, whiter, more confident smile!

Why whiten the smile?

Your smile is often someone’s first look at your personality. A smile can convey a lot: happiness, success, friendliness, and empathy. It’s important for your first impression to be a warm, beautiful smile. When you have white teeth, people will simply notice your beautiful smile, versus the individual components. However, if you have stained, dingy, or dull teeth, that is probably all someone will be able to see.

In many cases, patients seek whitening services for a specific event. Perhaps you are heading to a wedding, or an upcoming reunion. A newly whitened smile can help you feel confident and attractive. The best part is with proper care; your whitened smile can last for a long time.

What sets your cosmetic dentistry apart from other dentists in Perth?

A quick search on Google will pull up hundreds of dentists offering cosmetic dentistry services. It can be confusing and overwhelming knowing who to go to and where to even start!

Our dentists are highly experienced and specially trained in cosmetic dental procedures, having spent a great deal of time learning and practicing the latest in cosmetic dental treatments and materials.

We have the privilege of working with our own dedicated, highly skilled dental technicians who share with us the same goals, to serve you with the highest professional standard. This means that we are able to offer something very unique – we can complete your crowns and veneers and give you your dream smile with quality and affordability.

Sedation dentistry

I’m a REALLY nervous patient – will I be able to cope with treatment?

You are not alone! A large number of patients are nervous to different degrees about coming in for dental treatment.

If you are extremely nervous, have not been able to cope with dental procedures in the past, are a bad gagger, or have more invasive treatment to be done, you may benefit greatly from one of our Sleep and Sedation dentistry options. Contact us to find out more about these treatments.

General dentistry

Are there any risks involved with bacterial infection?

If tooth decay is right next to the pulp, the pulp may not be strong enough to make healthy dentin. If this happens, the pulp may need to be removed by a participating dentist or endodontist, or the whole root may have to be removed by an oral surgeon.

Some dental procedures can cause bacteria in the mouth to enter the bloodstream and cause infections in other parts of the body. People who have difficulty fighting off infections may need to take antibiotics before and after dental surgery. Such people include those who:

  • Were born with heart defects.
  • Have damaged or artificial heart valves.
  • Have liver disease (cirrhosis).
  • Have an impaired immune system.
  • Have a history of bacterial endocarditis.
  • Have artificial joints, such as a hip that has been replaced.
Is smoking really bad for my teeth?

Smoking is one of the worst things you can do to your mouth. It is the leading cause of oral cancer and it aggravates every oral health condition known to man. Smokers, for instance, have a much higher risk of periodontal disease. What’s more, it discolours your teeth and makes your breath smell.

Is it going to be a painful experience?

Painful dentistry is definitely a thing of the past. Our dentists are trained to ensure that your dental work is completed in a way that is as painless, and comfortable as possible. If you are worried about a particular aspect of your treatment (eg: having a needle), let your dentist know and options can be discussed to address this and ensure you have only the BEST experience with us.

What if I have a toothache?

There are many potential causes for pain within the mouth and surrounding areas. Avoid self-diagnosis as this can be misleading when we assess your pain.
Pain may originate from teeth, gums and surrounding regions of the mouth or face, eg. jaw joint.
Pain may range from mild to severe, however the severity of dental pain may not accurately indicate the severity of the underlying problem.
If you are experiencing severe throbbing pain, marked tenderness to biting or notice a swelling of the face, this could be potentially serious and you should get in contact with us as soon as possible.
Milder pain may be a sign of an underlying tooth problem that could get worse if left alone, so please organise an appointment so that we can assess the health of your teeth.
It is usually safe to take paracetamol (eg. Panadol) or ibuprofen (eg. Nurofen) to help relieve the pain, however make sure you read the instructions carefully.

What treatments are performed in general dentistry?

General dentistry involves having regular check-ups to ensure the health of your teeth. General Dentistry treatments include anything that helps maintain oral health, including fillings, cleans and scaling, root canal treatments, wisdom teeth, extractions and more. Our professionals will also provide you with brushing and flossing techniques to keep your personal dental health in order.

Why are my teeth sensitive?

Sensitivity is a very common complaint. The idea of eating ice-cream or having a cold drink is enough to make many of us cringe. Commonly sensitivity results from a loss of enamel protection on teeth. This can occur due to a plethora of causes including intake of large amounts of acidic food and drinks such as carbonated soft drinks, cracked teeth, gum recession leaving the tooth root exposed, excessive brushing damaging the enamel – commonly around the gum margin of the tooth and, cavity development, to name but a few. The good news is that sensitivity can often be managed and does not have to be accepted as a normal part of life.

In some cases, sensitivity which lasts for a significant period of time after the initial stimulus has been removed can indicate more ominous underlying issues such as damage to the “nerve of the tooth”. The important thing to remember is that not all dental problems cause discomfort straight away and it is important to continue regular dental examinations to avoid problems, or manage them early.

Quality materials

What materials will you use when doing my smile makeover?

All our dental work is fabricated from the HIGHEST END, strongest materials available on the market. Our ceramic work is all specially designed, milled on site using the latest in dental milling technology and hand finished to the highest standard.

Beware those who send work to overseas dental laboratories! This has become an increasing and worrying trend designed to cut costs for the dentist. The strict standards and protocols we have in Australia are usually not followed in overseas countries, meaning often you will have no idea about the quality or even the safety of the type of material that is being placed in your mouth.

Quality with hygiene

Is the dental equipment cleaned after each appointment?

At Spring Orchid Dental we have a state of the art sterilising department managed by highly trained staff to oversee that best practices are strictly adhered to.

Our equipment is the most modern available and, in conjunction with a bar coded tracking system, we deliver the sterile instruments to each room in sealed individual packaging.

Customer services

Can I get a list of prices?

Due to the nature of dentistry it is often difficult to advise our patients how much an appointment will cost before they have seen the dentist. When you come in for an examination appointment you will be given a written estimate outlining the costs of all recommended treatment. Our friendly Front Office Staff can assist you with any enquiries you may have.

Can I refer my family and friends?

Our patients are our greatest ambassadors. We welcome your referrals and like to know who recommended you in order to thank them personally.

Spring Orchid Dental builds our proud reputation of exceptional care of our patients for many years. We are not only one of the most progressive, most comprehensive dental practices but also one of the friendliest and most welcoming.

Many of our patients will tell you this is the dental practice they would prefer to visit. The practice grows through the referral of friends and family of many of our delighted patients.

Do you have an after-hours service?

Apart from our normal opening hours. We have an emergency service for our existing patients who may need to contact their dentist out of hours.

I’m worried about how much my smile makeover is going to cost?

Cost is a major factor that most patients worry about when making an appointment to come see the dentist, and we completely understand. When making your initial consultation, our friendly receptionists will go through fee’s for this first appointment so there are no surprises!

Once you have seen one of our dentists, a specifically tailored treatment plan will be formulated that you are happy with and suits your budget, with all the fees laid out clearly and fully explained. If you have private health insurance (eg: HBF), we will often be able to do an “on the spot” out of pocket final quote for you. Alternatively, you can take your quote to your health fund provider to find out exactly how much you will need to pay and how much of the treatment they will cover.

Individual payment plans for larger work being completed over a period of time such as Invisalign, are also available. Some dental treatments can sometimes be spread out over several months or over the course of the year to make it easier and more affordable for patients.

What are the waiting periods for making an appointment?

If possible, please book in advance as we are quite busy, especially during holiday periods, Saturdays and late afternoons.
Usually we are able to book you in within the next 1-2 weeks.
If we are unable to book you in on your preferred day or time, you may request to be placed on a cancellation list. If someone cancels their appointment we may be able to bring your appointment forward.
What Health funds are accepted?
We accept all health funds connected with Hicaps.

What payment methods are accepted?

Cash, Visa, MasterCard, Amex, EFTPOS and cheque. Direct deposit may be possible, but please discuss this with our reception staff.

What will happen on my first visit to the practice?

During this appointment, we want to make sure that we have all the information to thoroughly understand your dental needs. You will be asked to complete a medical history questionnaire that provides us with a great deal of information relevant to your treatment and to us. You will be seen by one of our friendly dentists who will firstly conduct an initial oral exam of your gums and teeth, charting and documenting any changes in your overall oral health. We will then clean and polish your teeth and finally talk to you about looking after for your teeth and gums to ensure long term oral health.

Will I be comfortable during my appointment?

Patient comfort has always been a priority at Spring Orchid Dental. We look forward to caring for you with kindness, attention and dental excellence at all times. From the first contact, it’s obvious that Spring Orchid Dental is not your average dental practice. We offer music, happy gas and other options to make your visit comfortable.

Will I know how much my treatment is going to cost?

Yes. We will always give you an estimate of treatment costs and if possible several treatment options to suit financial and cosmetic preferences.
Will there be a gap after I claim on my Health Fund?

Spring Orchid Dental is not contracted to a particular health insurance company, meaning there is usually a gap after claiming on your health fund. Our patients often ask us why we have chosen not to have a “preferred provider” relationship with private health insurance companies.

Being a preferred provider does not necessarily mean that the health insurance company is warranting that the dentist is providing the best possible individual treatment to each individual patient. Being a “preferred provider” means that a dental practice has entered into a financial agreement with a health insurance company. Being a “preferred provider” involves taking up a contract with a particular health insurance company, and working to a fee schedule determined by that insurance company.

Providing optimum patient care, individually tailored to each patient’s individual needs is Spring Orchid Dental’s first priority. While it may not universally be the case, the fee schedules determined by the health insurance companies may limit the time, care and services we are able to provide our patients, as well as pre-determine the quality of the materials which we use.

Spring Orchid Dental prides itself on unbiased and uncompromising service, individualised care and technical excellence so we choose not to be contracted to any of the health insurance companies. We do however have HICAPS facilities so that you can make instant claims to your health fund and only pay the difference at the time of your appointment.