Using dental implants to replace one, some, or all of your natural teeth

Dental implants are the only permanent way a dentist can replace missing teeth. At Blue Sky Dentistry in Northern Ireland, our skilled implant dentist, Dr Rory McEnhill, can restore your smile and full functionality to your jaw by replacing one, some, or even all of your natural teeth with dental implants and either a crown, bridge, or dentures.

dental-implants-belfastHow dental implants work

Over the past three decades, a great deal of research and development has gone into dental implants. They are often the best option for patients with one or more missing teeth, providing a permanent solution that will look and function just like natural teeth.

Dental implants are little screws, made out of titanium and placed directly in your jaw bone in a small oral surgical procedure, carried out here at our Northern Ireland dental practice. Sometimes, permanent new teeth can be attached straight away; in other cases, it is best to wait a few months to give your implants time to heal and integrate with your bone. You may be fitted with temporary teeth during this healing period, so you need not worry about being left toothless.

In most cases, the placement of dental implants only requires local anaesthetic, although we can also treat you under conscious sedation here at our Northern Ireland dental practice if that’s what you prefer.

Titanium is used because of its high degree of compatibility with the human body, and the fact that it prevents bone loss because it is osteoconductive – supportive of bone growth. Bone loss or shrinkage is a very common side-effect in patients with missing teeth, particularly those who have worn dentures for some years.

If you have already experienced bone loss, don’t panic. At Blue Sky Dentistry in Northern Ireland, we are able to provide bone grafting procedures that are designed to rebuild your bone density prior to the placement of dental implants.

Implants don’t just restore a realistic-looking smile, they also give you back all the benefits of a fully functioning jaw. They are the next best thing to natural teeth, and enable you to eat a healthy and balanced diet.

Let cosmetic dentistry unlock the beauty of your smile

Cosmetic dentistry is designed to help people achieve the smile they’ve always dreamt of. Belfastdental practice Blue Sky Dentistry has an extensive menu of cosmetic treatments, and we have helped many women and men achieve their smile goals. If any aspect of your current smile makes you unhappy, we invite you to come in and join us for a consultation.

Belfastcosmetic dentistry

cosmetic-dentistryMany people are unhappy with their smile. This can stop you from smiling in photographs and in public, and can have a serious impact on both your self-confidence and your interactions with others in both a professional and personal setting. Cosmetic dentistry is designed to help you overcome these problems – and the good news is, treatment often takes far less time than you might think.

Anyone interested in cosmetic dentistry in Belfast should come for a consultation with a skilled cosmetic dentist at Blue Sky to discover what we can do for you. Your clinician will undertake a detailed examination of your teeth, gums, and surrounding structures, and will listen carefully to what you want to change about your current smile before recommending the best way to do that.

Sometimes one treatment is required, other times combining two or more treatments from our cosmetic dentistry options is best; the choice really is yours, and we’ll be there to help you and answer any questions or concerns you may have every step of the way.

Among the most popular cosmetic procedures at our Belfast practice are:

Veneers

These thin porcelain shells are placed over the front surfaces of your front teeth and bonded in place with strong dental adhesive. They can improve the look of teeth with a number of imperfections, including permanent discolouration or small cracks.

Teeth whitening

Carried out at home or in the practice, this is a fast and effective smile booster.

Dental implants: how they can change your life

If you’ve been struggling with ill-fitting dentures for years, dental implants could be the perfect solution for you. At Blue Sky Dentistry in Belfast, our implant dentist Dr Rory McEnhill is dedicated to helping patients get both their smile and their quality of life back. Read on to discover how he can help you. . .

The problem with dentures

implant clinic in BelfastDid you know that dentures have been used since the time of the ancient Egyptians? They are helpful for patients who have lost their natural teeth, but they do have their own set of problems. Because they are not fixed in place they have a tendency to become loose over time, as both gums and jaw bone recede when natural teeth are lost.

This means you may struggle to eat some foods and may find yourself fiddling with messy pastes to cement your dentures in place. You may also need repeat appointments with your dentist to have your dentures adjusted.

How can dental implants help?

Dental implants act as replacement tooth roots. They are fixed in your jaw and provide a secure base for your dentures, holding them firmly in place. Imagine a life free of pastes and slipping dentures! A visit to our implant clinic in Belfast can make that dream a reality.

One of our most popular solutions for patients who wear dentures is click-fit implants for dentures. These dental implants provide a firm anchor for your dentures, holding them firmly in place so there’s no danger of slipping, while the implants also support bone growth, helping to stop bone shrinkage.

How do I get implant-secured dentures?

The first step is to book an appointment with our dental implant specialist Dr Rory McEnhill at our Belfast dental clinic. He will assess the current state of your jaw bone and devise the best solution for you.

Fixing a Gummy Smile: Botox is an Option

In the early days without Photoshop and gum contouring, many patients, even famous celebrities like Miley Cyrus, Gwen Stefani, and Beyonce, showed a lot of gums when they smiled. An excess in gums is called a ‘gummy smile’, wherein the appearance of the upper teeth is dominated by excessive gum tissue.

Botox treatmentThe Gummy Smile and Its Contributing Factors

The gummy smile or more formally known as excessive gingival display is a condition in which a high lip-line exposes an abnormal amount of gum tissue. This occurs because of a range of factors, including an abnormal eruption of teeth, wherein the teeth covered by excess gum tissue appear short.

Another cause is the manner in which the upper jawbone grew and developed; for instance, an excessive bulging protrusion of the upper jaw within the gum tissue displays a gummy smile.

One of the most common causes, however, is when the movement of the upper lip is hyperactive, causing it to rise up higher than normal, and exposing more of the gum tissue when a patient smiles.

From Surgery to a Minimally Invasive Treatment

In the past, surgery was the main treatment option for large, visible gums, which can be too costly and painful. In some cases, patients need to undergo an orthognathic surgery, which can take up to two years to complete.

Fortunately, there is an alternative, possibly even a better way to correct this aesthetic issue: Botox on the upper lip. Aside from its low cost, it is also really quick and takes just ten minutes to administer, and even lasts up to six months.

In an off-label study published in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal, researchers found that this injectable treatment offers an effective, minimally invasive, and safe alternative to surgery. It contributes to a significant improvement in smile aesthetics, and has high patient satisfaction as well.

Botox works by paralysing the hyperactive muscles on the upper lip. This reduces its elevation, and then reduces the inhibiting gummy smile.

At Blue Sky Dentistry, you can fix your gummy smile and boost your confidence with our Botox treatment. You can choose from our cosmetic dentistry procedures, including gum contouring and gum grafting, to improve your dental and overall appearance, too.

Call us today to schedule a consultation.

Stubborn Stains Be Gone: Removing Tough Teeth Stains

How can I remove stains from my teeth?” is a common question people ask during a visit to the dentist.

It is no secret that almost everyone desires a whiter smile. Unfortunately, the temptation of dark-coloured beverages, food, alcohol and tobacco products result in yellow or darker teeth. Stained teeth can lessen an individual’s appeal, which is why having whiter teeth is important.

Teeth whiteningTwo types of basic stains

Teeth stains come in two basic types: intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsic teeth stains are inborn parts of the teeth. Intrinsic stains occur when the tooth is forming; it incorporates dark-coloured molecules into the tooth’s structure. Often, these stains develop deeper compared to extrinsic stains and are more difficult to remove.

Extrinsic stains, on the other hand, are more common and come with your current lifestyle. Teeth are made of enamel, which contains microscopic spaces within its surface. Whenever you drink dark-coloured beverages, eat or smoke, dark molecules settle within the spaces and cause yellow or brown staining.

The importance of brushing your teeth

When your dentists recommend regular brushing, do not take this for granted. Good oral hygiene is essential in removing stubborn stains and should be a priority. Your dentist may recommend whitening toothpaste to help your teeth whitening efforts.

While regular brushing cannot completely remove your stains, it helps. Use a toothbrush with a small head and soft bristles to reach smaller spaces. Electric toothbrushes are also an option; compared to regular brushes, these remove stains more effectively.

In addition, remember not to rinse out your mouth immediately after brushing. The fluoride in your toothpaste must be in contact with your teeth, which helps build the enamel.

The best option for stubborn stains: teeth whitening procedure

One of the most effective remedies to stubborn stains is a visit to your cosmetic dentist and asking for a teeth whitening procedure. The process lightens the colour of your teeth and attempts to achieve a natural-whitened finish. Teeth whitening comes with two options: use a teeth whitening kit or get the help of a dentist. Both options are effective in removing stubborn stains and are a popular choice with patients who wish to look their best.

Get rid of stubborn stains as early as possible. With Blue Sky Dentist, we can help you achieve the white smile you have always wanted. Get in touch with us now for more information.

The Bad Side to the Bad Habit of Nail Biting

It has been estimated that half of all humans have a tendency to bite their nails. At ten fingernails per human, that adds up to billions of fingernails chewed on every day. Some do it only during tense moments, while some mindlessly commit to this habit every day.

Although this habit helps ease tension and anxiety, it is actually bad for your oral health. Nail biting harms the teeth and the other structures surrounding it. Our team takes a closer look at the matter in the discussion that follows:

Blue Sky DentistIt Chips Your Teeth

Although the teeth are much stronger compared to your fingernails, constant flexing and biting down on hard surfaces damages the teeth. By biting through your nail, you could chip your tooth or even cause the enamel to fracture.

It Can Cause a Diastema

A diastema refers to a gap between your two front teeth. Studies show if the nail biting habit begins when the child is very young, the child develops a gapped tooth. Even adults who constantly shove their nails between teeth can develop diastema as they age.

It Weakens the Teeth

While you may think the constant pressure strengthens the teeth, the truth is it does not. All it does is cause root resorption, which is when parts of the roots of your teeth get dissolved by the bone surrounding them, which causes the teeth to become weaker and less able to withstand pressure and tension.

It Can Cause TMJ Problems

The bad habit of nail biting can cause disk displacement in the temporomandibular joint. Because of the repeated pressure and biting down force, you might feel pain in your TMJ. Consult with a dental specialist to determine if it is your fingernail biting habit causing the pain.

It Can Cause Gingivitis

Fingernails host an impressive number of bacteria and germs. Biting on your nails exposes your mouth to the ecology of bacteria on your fingers. This causes a series of oral problems, the most serious of which is gingivitis.

Avoid developing these dental problems by easing yourself out of the bad habit of nail biting. Consult with experts for an assessment of your oral condition and for valuable advice on easing out of this bad nail biting habit. Blue Sky Dentist delivers the best results to keep your teeth in optimal condition.

Contact us today to keep oral problems at bay.

Gum Contouring: Giving You More Reasons to Smile

A person may have a gummy smile due to genetics, health conditions, reactions to prescription medications and other issues. As it is evident when smiling, many feel the need to hide them from the public and not smile at all. Fortunately, there is a way to fix this problem.

Gum contouring, also known as gum reshaping, is a technique that adjusts the level of the gums and gives the teeth a more symmetrical look.

gum contouringIs Gum Contouring Only a Cosmetic Procedure?

Many patients think that gum contouring is only for improving smiles, but it does more than that. We provide this procedure along with other dental treatments to make them more successful. We offer this to older patients—starting at 40 years old—when they are showing signs of gum recession, as well. In some cases, we trim overgrown gum tissues when these are covering the crown of our patient’s tooth.

Are You a Good Candidate for Gum Contouring?

Excessive or uneven gum tissues make the teeth look out of alignment and shape when in fact, nothing is wrong and each tooth is in good condition. If you are not happy with the appearance of your smile, we can help improve that and give you more reasons to smile.

How Do You Take Care of Your Gums After Treatment?

After treatment, you may feel a slight stabbing sensation because of the increased sensitivity of your gums. This will last for a few days, so you need to make sure it heals properly. Rinse gently with warm salt water and avoid using strong oral products.

At Blue Sky Dentistry, we understand how important a smile is to your confidence and self-esteem. Our team is dedicated to providing you with gum contouring procedures that can help improve the look of your smile. Contact us or visit our homepage for more information about the services we offer.

7 Foods that can cause tooth decay

There are many ways of improving the health of your teeth and avoiding tooth problems as you get older.  Regular trips to your dentist, regular cleaning and regular flossing are just some of the ways to look after your teeth.  Another way to ensure you have healthy teeth is to be careful with what you are eating and drinking.  While there are foods that can be good for your dental hygiene, there are a vast amount that should really be avoided if you want to prevent a build-up of plaque and tartar that can lead to tooth decay.  Below we take a look at 7 foods you should steer clear of to avoid tooth decay.

Seven foods that can cause tooth decay

7 bad foods for your teeth

1. Hard sweets

We all know that sweets can be bad for our teeth because they can contain a lot of sugar, but hard candy sweets in particular can be extremely harmful to your teeth.  Not only are these sweets full of sugar but the hard nature of them can cause damage such as chipped or even broken teeth.  This may mean emergency dental surgery such as dental crowns or bridges.

2. Tea and coffee

We’re a nation of tea and coffee drinkers and indeed many of us will consume multiple cups a day.  Not only can the caffeine in tea and coffee dry out your mouth, drinking too much of it can stain your teeth over time and cause damage.

3. Crisps

Crisps can often be a favourite snack for many people to enjoy during the day but eating crisps can result in starch collecting between your teeth.  It’s therefore important that you drink water regularly during the day to ‘rinse’ food that has collected between your teeth, as well as clean and floss on a regular basis.  This will help prevent things like the starch from crisps building up to plaque.

4. Fizzy drinks

You’ve probably all heard it before but drinking too much fizzy juice is a bad recipe for your food.  The sugar and acids of many carbonated drinks (even if they are diet) will attack your enamel and lead to a build-up of plaque and decay your teeth.  Cut down your intake of fizzy drinks and replace it with water or even sugar free cordials.

5. Alcohol

Alcohol can be bad for us in so many ways but your teeth are one area that can really suffer from regular consumption of alcohol.  Drinks like red wine and beers can lead to staining of your teeth, while alcohol in general dehydrates your mouth, reducing the amount of saliva you produce.  Saliva is a great natural cleaner for your mouth.

If you are consuming a lot of alcohol, this will mean you produce less saliva and will lead to tooth decay and potentially gum disease.  This could lead to more advanced dental procedures in the future including cosmetic dentistry treatments like teeth whitening and cosmetic dentures.

6. Citrus fruits

Citrus fruits like lemon, limes and grapefruits can be popular additions to many of our favourite foods, but they can become a bit of an enemy to your mouth if you consume too many citrus fruits.  Lemons and grapefruits in particular can be highly acidic and regular consumption of them over time can erode the enamel of your teeth and lead to decay.

7. Sports drinks

For many professional and amateur sportsmen and women, an energy drink or isotonic sports drink is often part of your normal return before a training session or big match.  These drinks can often contain high volumes of sugar to provide energy quickly.  This is bad for your teeth though and in fact, a study in 2008 from the University of Iowa found that the sports drink Gatorade was worse for your teeth than both Coca Cola and Red Bull.

If you are going to consume energy drinks before training or a sporting event, do so in small measures and be sure to take water as well to help rinse through your teeth.

Always watch what you eat and drink

The best way to keep on top of what you eat and drink is by keeping a regular diary of what you are consuming.  If you find you are drinking more fizzy juice or alcohol or consuming more citrus thoughts than you imagined, try to cut down on them.  Your teeth will certainly benefit from it.

For more information on foods to eat and foods to avoid for healthy teeth, get in touch with our expert dental team today.

[Main image via Pixabay]