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[OP]
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Dec 12, 2016
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4 upvotes

Ask A Dentist Thread

Ask A Dentist Thread - inspired by the Pharmacist thread!

I have been on the RFD for a VERY long time. I have always been very grateful for all the help/knowledge/deals that I have gotten from the community. I thought this would be a good way for me to contribute and give back.

There have been many questions in the past, revolving around dentistry in this sub-forum. I know that because this is RFD, there will be questions regarding finances, insurance, money, etc. I will try my best to answer the questions to the best of my ability, but fees associated with dental treatment may vary depending on the provider and type of treatment.

Finally, and most importantly, I am not responsible for any problems that may arise. There are limitations on what advice/recommendations/answers I can provide because I will not have seen your mouth physically. It is always better to seek your own dentist or dental care provider, for serious issues and personalized advice.

Disclosures: I am a dentist that works in two offices in the GTA area (Scarborough & Oshawa). I am not being paid for this and will try my best to provide unbiased, evidence-based answers.
Last edited by AskADentist on Dec 13th, 2016 11:48 am, edited 1 time in total.
44 replies
Jr. Member
User avatar
Jul 12, 2015
185 posts
23 upvotes
We are thinking of switching dentists. The new dentist wants to do a complete exam and full set of x-rays the first time that he sees us.

1. Is this common for a first time visit?
2. Do dentists charge you a fee if you pick up your file yourself if you are leaving their business?
3. Why can't the new dentist just get my oral history from my dental file instead of charging for a full exam and x-rays?

PS. We go to the dentist twice yearly, and get our annual X-rays done.
Deal Addict
Feb 7, 2005
2592 posts
140 upvotes
What should a molar implant cost ?
[OP]
Newbie
Dec 12, 2016
11 posts
4 upvotes
AlexiRos wrote:
Dec 15th, 2016 1:12 am
We are thinking of switching dentists. The new dentist wants to do a complete exam and full set of x-rays the first time that he sees us.

1. Is this common for a first time visit?
2. Do dentists charge you a fee if you pick up your file yourself if you are leaving their business?
3. Why can't the new dentist just get my oral history from my dental file instead of charging for a full exam and x-rays?

PS. We go to the dentist twice yearly, and get our annual X-rays done.
Hi AlexiRos,

Here are the answers to your questions.
1) This is quite common for a first visit, because the complete exam will set baseline for the new dentist. That will include gum measurements, any existing fillings, and many other factors. The If you have received x-rays from your other office in the last year, you can have them send over the x-rays to the new office. For new patients at my office, I will only take new x-rays if the previous ones from the old office are outdated in order to reduce unnecessary exposure to radiation (even though it is very low)

2) No, it is not reasonable to charge a fee for the transfer of records. In fact, I think that it may be illegal to charge someone for their own records. You can fill out a form giving authorization for the new office to request the x-rays from your old office and they should be able to do it for you. Most offices will not send your whole file, but rather just the most recent x-rays.

3) Often times, it is best to do a new complete exam because each dentist has their own preference for collecting information. Some dentists may be more thorough than others when it comes to collecting information during a complete exam. Also, as I mentioned in #1, it will set a new baseline at your new office. You may request to not have x-rays, especially if the ones from the old office have been taken within the past year.

Hope that answers your questions, and don't hesitate to ask more!
[OP]
Newbie
Dec 12, 2016
11 posts
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pfbmgd wrote:
Dec 15th, 2016 7:26 am
What should a molar implant cost ?
Hi pfbmgd,

The cost of implants is always a popular questions from patients that are interested in implants. A molar implant, which comprises of the implant itself and the crown on top will be around $3000-5000.

You may ask why that there is such a large range for the price, so let me explain some factors that may influence the price.

The first is the provider that will be placing the implant. Many dentists including general dentists and specialists, such as oral surgeons and periodontists, can place implants. Their expertise and experience can play a large factor on how much they charge for the implant surgery. For example, an oral surgeon specialist who has done 1000 implants will probably charge more than a general dentist who has only placed 50.

The second is that there are many brands of implants. It may be a surprise to some people but there are MANY implant companies, over 300+. Some of the implant companies have been around a long time and have the most research and history. Some are much newer so they do not have this. In general, the older companies tend to be more expensive.

As well, you have to be careful when getting prices. Sometimes when quotes are given, they do not include the crown portion, which is the actual tooth that goes on top. As well, there are different costs associated with different materials for the crown as well.

The first step for getting an implant would be to get a consultation in order to assess your mouth and the area that you want the implant. For example, a mouth that is not in good condition with alot of gum disease is not an environment that is conducive to an implant succeeding. Another example is that there is not enough bone in the area for an implant, so you will require an additional procedure like a bone graft to build up the bone for an implant.

There is alot of information so let me know if you have any other questions.
Jr. Member
User avatar
Jul 12, 2015
185 posts
23 upvotes
Thank you, AskADentist! Your answer is super helpful.
Sr. Member
Apr 29, 2010
739 posts
28 upvotes
London
PAIN when i FLOSS

I was at the dentist 2 weeks ago. He informed me my left side, upper jaw second premolar (tooth #25) needed to have the old white fillings replaced. After doing so and till this day when i go to floss it always hurts. I have to slowly and gently insert and remove the floss so as to reduce or eliminate any stinging pain. The pain only occurs on the distal side of the second premolar tooth #25.

Is this a pain that will subside or should i go back to the dentist to correct it?

Thanks
[OP]
Newbie
Dec 12, 2016
11 posts
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rosario99 wrote:
Dec 16th, 2016 12:27 am
PAIN when i FLOSS

I was at the dentist 2 weeks ago. He informed me my left side, upper jaw second premolar (tooth #25) needed to have the old white fillings replaced. After doing so and till this day when i go to floss it always hurts. I have to slowly and gently insert and remove the floss so as to reduce or eliminate any stinging pain. The pain only occurs on the distal side of the second premolar tooth #25.

Is this a pain that will subside or should i go back to the dentist to correct it?

Thanks
Hi rosario99,

Is there any other pain or sensitivity other than when you floss? For example, cold/hot or biting.

If it is just flossing, it is possible that during the bonding of the filling to your tooth, there was either contamination or another reason why there was insufficient bonding of the filling to the tooth. That is probably the most common cause of pain/sensitivity to flossing after a filling.

I would say that if the sensation does not go away after a week or so, then approach your dentist to have a look. Although extremely rare, if this happens to any of my patients I replace the filling free of charge but I cannot speak for your dentist.

Hope that helps, update me with what happens!
Sr. Member
Apr 29, 2010
739 posts
28 upvotes
London
AskADentist wrote:
Dec 16th, 2016 9:21 am
Hi rosario99,

Is there any other pain or sensitivity other than when you floss? For example, cold/hot or biting.

If it is just flossing, it is possible that during the bonding of the filling to your tooth, there was either contamination or another reason why there was insufficient bonding of the filling to the tooth. That is probably the most common cause of pain/sensitivity to flossing after a filling.

I would say that if the sensation does not go away after a week or so, then approach your dentist to have a look. Although extremely rare, if this happens to any of my patients I replace the filling free of charge but I cannot speak for your dentist.

Hope that helps, update me with what happens!
Is there any other pain or sensitivity other than when you floss? For example, cold/hot or biting.

As of today there is no other pain or sensitivity besides the flossing at that one tooth. Last week or so i was far more sensitive to hot and cold but that has since disappeared. I will wait until next week Friday (that will make it 3 weeks since the dentist appointment) and see how the tooth fares. I will be sure to not stress it with flossing by entering and exiting the area with great care in order to give it a chance to heal, if that is what is happening. I'll get back to you on this.

Much appreciated!
Member
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Aug 3, 2010
218 posts
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1. Although i am an active brusher and flosser i notice over the years my gums have receded (likely due to overbrushing because i tend to brush for about 15 mins, twice a day) -- exposing the underlying cementum. My gumline is not as elastic whereby it no longer stays firmly tight against the tooth. Instead, i can see down it (exposed cementum), forming a small pocket where food likes to build up in there. I usually have to take a scalar and scoop out the food build up. Is there any way for the gums to tighten up or am i stuck with this problem permanently?

2. Teeth whitening - I have tried the take home tray with as high as 35% Carbamide Peroxide and i notice my teeth never whiten. Would using an in-office laser whiten procedure work better even though i understand that all its doing is just speeding up the hydrogen peroxide reaction on my teeth.

3. Mouthwash -- do they stain teeth? Because they make use of dyes i would imagine they do? Obviously i want to avoid using agents taht promote more teeth yellowing but then i lose the benefits of mouthwash.
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Feb 6, 2004
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what are your thoughts on Natural teeth whitening remedies such as: oil pulling with coconut oil and brushing with activated charcoal paste or charcoal toothpaste?
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Newbie
Dec 16, 2016
6 posts
One of my wisdom teeth is growing horizontally and need to be pulled out. My dentist also suggested scaling for the other teeth in conjunction with the pulling surgery. I'm not sure if it is a good idea. I think cleaning teeth several days before the pulling off could decrease the possibilities of infection caused by the pulling off. While do the two things together would do the opposite. What's your opinion on the procedure, please?
[OP]
Newbie
Dec 12, 2016
11 posts
4 upvotes
carriems wrote:
Dec 17th, 2016 9:39 pm
One of my wisdom teeth is growing horizontally and need to be pulled out. My dentist also suggested scaling for the other teeth in conjunction with the pulling surgery. I'm not sure if it is a good idea. I think cleaning teeth several days before the pulling off could decrease the possibilities of infection caused by the pulling off. While do the two things together would do the opposite. What's your opinion on the procedure, please?
Hi carriems,

I don't see any issue with having the teeth cleaned before having extractions the same day. If you wanted to be extra careful, you could do a Listerine rinse for the full 30 seconds to reduce the bacteria in the mouth as well.

The risk of infection without any other medical factors is extremely low. If you are really concerned, you could request to have the scaling done a few days before the extraction. I am sure that they are willing to accommodate that for you.
[OP]
Newbie
Dec 12, 2016
11 posts
4 upvotes
Neovingian wrote:
Dec 16th, 2016 3:40 pm
what are your thoughts on Natural teeth whitening remedies such as: oil pulling with coconut oil and brushing with activated charcoal paste or charcoal toothpaste?
Hi Neovingian,

In the past few years, there has been a great increase in "natural" remedies such as oil pulling and brushing with activated charcoal.

While there is not a significant amount of research performed on these natural or holistic approaches, it does not mean that there is no merit in them.

When patients ask me if it is okay for them to be doing them, I always say that it should not replace routine dental visits and traditional at-home oral care. However, if they would like to do it to supplement this, I would see no problems.

With charcoal, I have not tried it myself. From what I have read, the charcoal is quite abrasive & gritty. This could pose a problem of eroding your teeth and enamel if it is used too much and is too abrasive.

There are definitely going to be different answers depending on who you ask. I could imagine that some dentists may be quite opposed to these methods. My philosophy is that as long as its not doing any harm, it doesn't hurt to try it or supplement your oral hygiene regimen.

Hope that answers your question! Don't hesitate to ask more.
[OP]
Newbie
Dec 12, 2016
11 posts
4 upvotes
brand404 wrote:
Dec 16th, 2016 2:23 pm
1. Although i am an active brusher and flosser i notice over the years my gums have receded (likely due to overbrushing because i tend to brush for about 15 mins, twice a day) -- exposing the underlying cementum. My gumline is not as elastic whereby it no longer stays firmly tight against the tooth. Instead, i can see down it (exposed cementum), forming a small pocket where food likes to build up in there. I usually have to take a scalar and scoop out the food build up. Is there any way for the gums to tighten up or am i stuck with this problem permanently?

2. Teeth whitening - I have tried the take home tray with as high as 35% Carbamide Peroxide and i notice my teeth never whiten. Would using an in-office laser whiten procedure work better even though i understand that all its doing is just speeding up the hydrogen peroxide reaction on my teeth.

3. Mouthwash -- do they stain teeth? Because they make use of dyes i would imagine they do? Obviously i want to avoid using agents taht promote more teeth yellowing but then i lose the benefits of mouthwash.
Hi brand404,

Here are the answers to your questions,

1) Gum recession is very common, and the most common cause is due to aggressive brushing. Be very careful not to put too much pressure on your gums when you are brushing, which may actually cause the gum to be traumatized, which will lead to recession. As well, make sure that you are using a soft or a very soft toothbrush. In fact, I never recommend any patient to use a medium or coarser toothbrush. There are options such as gum grafting, which is usually performed by a periodontist (gum specialist). The best course of action is to see a dentist for an exam first, because it is hard to see the extent of the gum recession and make recommendations without seeing it physically.

2) Some people's teeth do not respond to teeth whitening as well as others. How many days of treatment are you doing consecutively with your take home trays? As well, are you following the exact instructions that come with your whitening gel?

3) Most common brands of mouthwash such as Listerine do not stain teeth too much. There are special mouthwashes such as Peridex, which you wouldn't be using regularly, that would stain your teeth. I do recommend that you use mouthwash with no alcohol, as that can cause dry mouth.
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