Modern dentistry is a big leap forward from the old days!

By Dr Tom Giblin

Dentistry has changed rapidly over the last decade or so, with many new developments that can make dramatic changes to a patient’s life, both cosmetically and functionally.

The main function of teeth is to chew food and often painful or missing teeth can change the type of foods we eat– often negatively affecting our diet.

Some people with missing teeth have dentures to help them chew, but they often find them troublesome if they are ill fitting as they move and get food underneath them.

Dental implants have been a revolution in dentistry, as they allow us to replace teeth that have been lost, leading to a dramatic improvement in function for our patients. A dental implant is a small titanium screw that is placed into the bone and allowed to heal for 4-5 months. It can be thought of as a replacement tooth root.

We can then connect a crown, bridge or denture on top of the implant. Crowns and bridges attached to implants are fi xed in place, and look and act like normal teeth. While they cannot get decay like your own teeth, they still need to be brushed and fl ossed to look after the gums!

The other option is an overdenture, which is a removable denture which can replace either a few teeth or a whole arch of teeth very simply and affordably. “We can idealise a patient’s function and smile, often increasing support and “plumping up” lips and cheeks, says Dr. Tom Giblin. “We can also place implants underneath many existing dentures to help to stabilise them and take the load off the gums (which were not designed to take chewing forces!)

“Getting assessed for dental implants is quite simple and straight forward. Firstly, an overall check of your health is done, we assess your mouth and all your teeth, gums and jaws. Often a 3D x-ray called a CBCT is taken to ensure there is enough bone to place the implant. “Once we have assessed you we will present you with all of your options and allow you to choose which one suits you and your budget.

“The technology has also greatly improved. Modern techniques in CAD/CAM and new materials have allow us to design and manufacture restorations much more accurately and with better biocompatibility than ever before. We can also offer better warranties on our materials.”

Dr Giblin is the only Specialist Prosthodontist on the Northern Beaches, and brings a wealth of knowledge from his three years of specialist training at the University of Texas in the USA He offers in-house CBCT x-ray, an full in-house commercial dental laboratory to control design and quality.

He also offers sedation dentistry with qualified dental sedationists and anaesthetists.