Why get a check-up every 6 months

Calgary Dental Tooth Cavity

Why your dentists at West Market Dental recommend a check-up every 6 months and what gets done?

At West Market Dental your dentists like to come in at your 6 month cleaning to say hi and do your dental check-up. In our office all three of our Calgary dentists believe in a thorough dental check-up where we will begin with an exam outside your mouth where we will check for any lumps and bumps, evaluate your TMJ (jaw joint) among other areas. After that we will check inside your mouth where your dentist will first begin to check your gums, cheeks, tongue etc. for oral cancer and make sure everything is looking in tip top shape. Finally and most important for some patients is your dentist will then do a thorough check over of your teeth. After all is done, your dentist will then let you know of any thing they noticed. Believe it or not most issues in your mouth will not cause any discomfort until they become big problems so the overall main purpose of this check up is to use any x-rays taken as well as the visual exam to notice any small problems that may be present so they can be fixed before they cause any pain. All the dentists at our Calgary Signal Hill dental office are also trained in many methods of improving your smile whether its porcelain veneers, smile make-over, dental implants, cosmetic dental bonding or invisalign (clear or invisible braces) so if you have any questions about your mouth or improving your smile this is a perfect time to ask your dentist and he would be happy to explain things to you.

We recently had a patient come in and it's a perfect example why we like to do our 6 month check-ups. (more…)

Laser Tongue Tie Revision

click to play
The laser tongue tie procedure was performed on a 10 year old boy in order to help improve his speech. In the case where there is a severe tongue tie, the laser revision may help improve an individual's speech.

Please contact us for more information on the procedure and booking appointment.

Velscope Oral Cancer Screening Device

Click to view larger image
Many people may not be aware of the fact that oral cancer is the 6th most common form of cancer and that it is actually more prevalent than cervical cancer.

In addition to a visual exam with the naked eye, the dentists and hygienists at West Market Dental also utilize the Velscope to help with the screening for oral cancer. There is no additional charge for the Velscope oral cancer screening since it is included as a part of the new patient exam and check-up.

click to play
The technology has been showcased on "The Dr. Oz Show" and "The Doctors". Feel free to watch the video to the left and also videos on the DoctorOz website.

Thumb Sucking Treatments

Many people may not be aware that thumb or finger sucking, as well as prolonged pacifier use, can eventually lead to dental problems. Some sources claim that it is safe for children to suck their thumb or use a pacifier up to age 3 or 4 without causing any permanent dental problems. In my eleven years of clinical experience I find that it is best to stop the habit by age two. I have seen many 2 and 3 year olds who have already developed irreversible orthodontic problems.

Click to view larger image
Click to view larger image
Thumb sucking or pacifier use will eventually push the upper teeth out and the lower teeth in, thus creating a large space between the front teeth. Even though it is only the baby teeth that are initially affected, the bone structure around the teeth will also be affected. When the child turns 6 or 7 years old and the adult teeth begin to come in, the child's adult teeth will also have the large gap between the front teeth and thus necessitate future orthodontic treatment. The pacifier habit is easily broken by simply taking away the pacifier. The child will usually be upset and cry for 2 to 4 days. It is much harder to break the thumb sucking habit so I am providing the following information for those in need of advice.

There are three basic categories of treatment.

  • Behavioral therapy helps a child avoid thumb-sucking through various techniques such as reminder therapy and reward systems. Reminder therapy is useful for children who are ready to discontinue the habit. Nagging a child about a habit will most likely prolong it. Reward systems usually involve the use of a calendar, on which is star is placed for every day in which no thumb habit is observed. A reward is given to the child after a certain number of stars have been earned. Behavioral therapy works best if all people involved in the child's care follow the treatment plan. The biggest problem with behavioral therapy alone is that children will thumb suck at night to comfort themselves, especially when tired, and so children will often continue the habit at night subconsciously. Placing an Ace Bandage around the elbow at night can help with this. In the Ace Bandage technique, an elastic bandage is wrapped around the elbow at bedtime. As the child falls asleep, the pressure from the bandage removes the thumb from the mouth. The disadvantages of this last technique are: possible decreased blood flow to the arm so care must be taken to ensure the bandage is not too tight, and a lower success rate than compared to appliance therapy.

  • Click to view larger image
    Click to view larger image
    Thumb devices, such as the one made by Kid Giddy can be used for children with severe thumb-sucking problems. A thumb device is usually made of nontoxic material and is worn over the child's thumb. It is held in place with straps that go around the wrist. A thumb device prevents a child from being able to suck his or her thumb and is worn all day. It is removed after the child has gone 48 hours without trying to suck a thumb. The device is put back if the child starts to suck his or her thumb again. Placing tape or a bandage over the thumb is another method. Unfortunately, most older kids will be able to remove the tape or bandages themselves. MAVALA Stop is another innovative product that has been shown to be very effective. MAVALA Stop is a harmless, transparent nail polish that has a distinct bitter taste. It needs to be reapplied every couple of days.

  • Click to view larger image
    Oral devices (such as a palatal arch or crib that fits into the roof of the mouth) interfere with the pleasure a child gets from thumb-sucking. It may take several months for the child to stop sucking the thumb when these devices are used. When the child stops sucking, parents may choose to continue using the device for several months. This may prevent the child from starting the habit again. Oral devices need to be fitted by a dentist. Even though these appliances are the most effective method to stop thumb sucking, in my opinion, they should be the last choice once we have exhausted all other options. It is the most expensive option and can be difficult to place in young or uncooperative children.

Laser Treatment for Ankyloglossia (Tongue Tied)

Click to view larger image
Click to view larger image
We saw a two year old boy yesterday for a laser frenectomy (treatment for kids who are tongue tied). The actual procedure took about 2 minutes to complete. In this particular situation, laser treatment was a good choice over scalpel surgery. There was no bleeding and no need for stitches immediately after treatment. Because laser treatment traditionally has very little inflammation associated with it, he will feel very little discomfort during the healing period. We would like to thank the family for coming all the way from Red Deer to see us.

In general, ankyloglossia should be treated right after birth if it affects the child's breast/ bottle feeding. Otherwise, it can be treated at age five or six in order to prevent speech or dental problems. We do not treat children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years old for this procedure. Kids with ankyloglossia will usually have a hard time making the "r" and "l" sounds.

Pola Advanced Tooth Whitening System

Click to visit POLA website
We are currently offering POLA Take Home Whitening System – POLA Day and POLA Night for $300.00.

The Pola Day/Night treatment is a take home do-it-yourself kit to be applied to your teeth in the comfort of your own home. An impression of your teeth is taken at our office and a custom tray is made for you to take home with your kit of Pola day/night.

Depending on the level of staining on your teeth, and the health of your teeth, we will supply you with Pola Day/Night at varying levels of carbamide peroxide gel concentrations. These percentages will be marked on the syringes. Wear the trays in your mouth for the time recommended . More information will be provided upon your dental visit.

For more information on POLA Advanced Tooth Whitening System, feel free to contact us or visit POLA website.

At this time we do not offer POLA Office. As an alternative, we do offer ZOOM Teeth whitening for in-office treatments.

Professional Teeth Whitening

Free Professional Teeth Whitening
  • $300 Zoom® Take-Home Whitening
  • $550 Zoom® In-Office Whitening
Please note that not everyone is a candidate for professional teeth whitening. For more information, feel free to click on the links above, or give us a call to inquire about these two excellent methods of teeth whitening.

Invisalign Orthodontic Treatment For Crowded Teeth

Click to view larger image
In addition to her smile looking nicer, our client's teeth and gums are now much healthier. With straighter teeth, there is less tarter build-up and a decreased risk for cavities between the teeth. The treatment took approximately 12 months to complete.

Invisalign Treatment for Gaps Between the Teeth

Click to view larger image
This gentleman had always wanted straighter teeth but he was not keen on having traditional metal braces.

Like most of our Invisalign patients, it was an easy decision for him when he discovered the option of Invisalign, the nearly invisible way to straighten teeth.

The orthodontic treatment was completed in 8 months.