Tooth Strengthening

Fluoride

Fluoride can work on teeth both pre- and post-tooth-eruption. The fluoride hardens the tooth surface, slowing weakening during acid attacks and speeding up remineralisation. It can even reduce bacteria build-up!

We may ask you to use higher-dose fluoride toothpaste or a fluoride mouthwash if we believe there’s a decay problem or you have a reduction in saliva flow.
http://www.colgateprofessional.com.au/universal/faqs.asp
Tooth erosion from high-acid drink or food and acid reflux will also benefit from fluoride treatment.
http://www.pronamel.com.au/faqs.aspx

We strongly recommend you use neutral pH fluoride mouthwashes, as the acidic versions may damage the surfaces of your porcelain restorations or crowns.

Highly concentrated Calcium creams and toothpastes

A number of highly concentrated calcium phosphate creams / toothpastes are now available to help strengthen the teeth: they work well in conjunction with fluoride.
Creams should be regularly used to obtain the best results. Even though they are very effective, some are milk-based, they’re not recommended for people with milk-protein allergies.
http://www.gcasia.info/content_GC_Tooth_Mousse.html

Highly concentrated calcium phosphate toothpastes use a different chemistry mechanism and do not contain milk-protein.
http://solutions.3m.com.au/wps/portal/3M/en_AU/3M-ESPE-SP/dental-professionals/products/category/preventive/clinpro-tooth-creme/

These products are also very effective in treating white spots on teeth.

Saliva Testing

Saliva protects teeth, so as part of our comprehensive examination and evaluation we may indicate a saliva test for you, particularly if we suspect there may a problem with saliva flow which could aggravate decay or erosion leading to tooth-wear. Saliva flow, consistency, buffering capacity and pH are all tested. The results sheet is very self explanatory as it will indicate your saliva performance by a simple traffic-light system. We often recommend having it done professionally as it will require interpretation of the results and preventative strategies are then developed to get the best result for you.

Teeth-grinding

People sometimes clench or grind their teeth unconsciously during the day or at night. This can cause severe damage to your teeth and your reconstructions or restorations, and may hurt your jaw joints (TMJs) and cause headaches as well. Also called ‘bruxism’, teeth-grinding may be caused by stress or simply be a habit.

Wearing and chipping of teeth, fracturing of fillings, increased tooth sensitivity, tightness of jaw muscles and exposed dentine (the yellow internals of the teeth) are all symptoms of bruxism. Teeth-clenching noises that keep your partner awake at night are another dead giveaway!

Awareness of your jaw position is very important in breaking the habit of teeth-clenching. Try to keep at least 6mm of space between your top and bottom jaws – the only time your jaws should be together is when you’re talking or eating. You could even place your tongue between your teeth to remind you not to clench.

If the damage is done, you may need veneers, crowns or in the worst cases, a full-mouth or half-mouth rehabilitation, and raising of the bite. We recommend the use of a night-guard or splint to protect your teeth after major rehabilitations, placement of veneers, TMJ problems, or simply to prevent wear. This is a hard plastic mouthguard-like item usually worn on the top jaw.