How Many Teeth Whitening Sessions Do You Need?

How Many Teeth Whitening Sessions Do You Need

Want dazzling pearly whites but not sure what to do or how many teeth whitening sessions you need? We have the answers.

Teeth whitening products and services are a great way to have incredible-looking teeth that shine and make you look amazing. It’s an easy and affordable way to restore your teeth to pristine condition in a way that toothpastes never really do, even those that promise to whiten your teeth several shades within weeks or even days. But with so many teeth whitening products now available, because there’s big demand for white teeth, how do you know which is the right one for you?

And if you do decide on a particular product or service from your dentist, how many teeth whitening sessions do you need from then on? Is it a case that you have to do it daily, or have it done at your dentist’s every week — and is that all going to take a huge chunk of your time — and cash? It’s no wonder that so many people are confused about teeth whitening and what it entails, and that’s why we decided to write this blog — to give you the answers you need to get the teeth whitening service you want.

A Cautionary Note about Teeth Whitening

Some people feel they can do their own teeth whitening, using a variety of everyday substances or specialist products they buy in the supermarket, and then do their own DIY teeth whitening at home. Perhaps it’s due to the vast amount of information about this on the internet — some of which says, for example, that using the baking ingredient bicarbonate of soda is great for whitening teeth.

The result of that, however, is that the enamel can be damaged as the material is quite abrasive, and this can lead to problems, such as cavities forming. Other DIY products, like teeth whitening strips and pens, can lead to tooth sensitivity and gum irritation, as they usually contain hydrogen peroxide, a harsh bleaching agent used in hair dyes.

You may have seen some beauty salons advertising teeth whitening services, but these are most likely illegal and best avoided. In the UK, for instance, an investigation found many beauty salons offering teeth whitening and it resulted in the prosecution of dozens of people. One salon owner was fined thousands of pounds and told by magistrates that she was, in effect, pretending to be a dentist by providing teeth whitening services.

So How Many Teeth Whitening Sessions Do You Need?

The best way to have your teeth whitened, so you don’t risk damaging them and get great results, is to simply have a consultation with your dentist. They will be able to advise you about the entire process, and some, like us, provide professional teeth whitening kits that can be used at home once an initial examination is done to ensure your teeth are in good condition and suitable for the treatment.

What we do with our teeth whitening system is take an impression of your teeth and then create a bleaching tray that perfectly matches their shape. This is important so that the solution placed in it has maximum contact with your teeth and you get effective results. As for how many teeth whitening sessions you need with a system like this, it’s generally done at home over a period of seven to 14 days — so in up to two weeks you could have noticeably whiter and brighter teeth, and your smile will be transformed.

Most patients will not have any side effects from this type of teeth whitening system. A few may experience mild sensitivity, but that will soon pass and will not lead to any damage of the enamel. It’s important to note that while your natural teeth will be many shades lighter, it won’t have any effect on dentures, crowns and veneers or bridges.

For more information about professional teeth whitening that delivers incredible results and that you can do in the comfort of your home, contact The James Clinic today. Soon, you could have dazzling teeth and an amazing smile.


How to Mentally Prepare for a Root Canal

How to Mentally Prepare for a Root Canal

Here, we present some tips on how you can mentally prepare for a root canal so that the treatment is as smooth, and comfortable, as possible.

Probably no other dental procedure creates so much fear and anxiety in patients as the thought that they’re due to have root canal treatment to save a tooth that otherwise might have to be extracted. All sorts of horror stories abound about having root canals done, and they’re usually focused on torturous experiences at the dentist that leave the patient howling in pain. 

Mostly, however, they’re wildly exaggerated and owe their origins to the relatively more dark days of dentistry in times past, when neither the equipment nor the care was what it is now. Good, modern dentistry is all about putting the patient first and making sure they’re at ease and as comfortable as possible at all times — this is our guiding principle here at The James Clinic. 

But even though modern dentistry strives to ensure that patients don’t go through any unnecessary discomfort, a root canal can sometimes be a lengthy procedure and at times there may be brief periods of pain. Therefore, it’s important that you’re mentally prepared for your root canal treatment. Here’s what we advise. 

Tips on How to Mentally Prepare for a Root Canal

✦ Talk about It

Fear of the unknown is what leads a lot of people to become incredibly anxious as an important dental appointment nears. It’s important to talk to your dentist about any procedure, and especially so with root canals, because it can take a while and sometimes be quite tricky. If you don’t know exactly what a root canal is, don’t be afraid to ask — we always encourage our patients to ask about our procedures in detail so that they’re fully in the know. 

Essentially, what a root canal is, by the way, is a procedure in which the infected pulp inside the root of a tooth is replaced with a rubber-like material and then the opening is sealed with a type of cement. And because the area around it will be injected with a local anaesthetic beforehand, there shouldn’t be any pain, and you’d experience the same amount of discomfort as if you were having a filling — which is to say, little or none. Having the facts before you have a root canal, direct from your dentist, will put you even more at ease. 

✦ Agree on a Pain Signal

Before your root canal treatment begins, tell your dentist you would like to have a pain signal so that in the event you suddenly experience pain and would like them to stop but can’t speak because of so many instruments in your mouth, you can signal you want them to stop and have a break. It can be something as simple as just raising your hand, and it will go a long way towards reassuring you that you won’t have to endure anything you don’t want to, or at least have an element of control over the procedure. 

✦ Keep Your Mind Occupied

Obviously, it can be difficult, or nearly impossible, to relax when you’re having a root canal done. But keeping your mind busy can certainly help to keep it off what’s happening in your mouth. Try various visualisation techniques to make your mind wander and give you a feeling of calm and relaxation. It could be something you want to do or are planning — like an upcoming sun holiday with the family. Visualise what you’ll be doing, whether it’s lying on the beach, swimming in the sea or anything else you typically do on holiday. Another good way to distract yourself from what’s going on in the dentist’s chair is to recall a happy and pleasurable period in your mind, such as a win at a sports event, for example, a nice run through the forest or someone interesting you met recently.

Before you know it, your root canal will be over and you’ll wonder where the time went. 

For all your general dentistry needs, including root canal treatment carried out by expert, friendly and understanding dentists, contact The James Clinic and make an appointment at one of Ireland’s leading dental practices. 

How to Relieve Wisdom Tooth Pain

How to Relieve Wisdom Tooth Pain

Wisdom teeth can be a real pain, especially when they’re acting up. Here’s how to get some relief.

Wisdom teeth are so-named because they’re the last set of teeth you get, erupting through the gums and at the back of the mouth in your late teens or early 20s. At least it’s hoped you might be a little bit wiser at that stage of your life, but even so, these newfound molars are often not so smart and misalignment and other issues may make it necessary to have them removed.

Before your wisdom teeth even fully come in and are developed, you may experience problems, and they’re usually associated with various levels of tenderness or pain. Many people don’t experience all that much when they’re getting their wisdom teeth, and may only have slight feelings of discomfort when chewing in that area or touching the back of the jaw. But others can have a lot of pain, and it can be unrelenting as the teeth poke through the gums and settle. If you suspect you’re getting wisdom teeth and that’s the cause of the pain in your mouth, it’s important to see your dentist straight away.

Wisdom tooth pain can be due to a number of factors, including the way they grow into the mouth, as sometimes they don’t come up in perfect alignment with the rest of the teeth and the gums but are crooked and don’t fit properly. It can also be the case that as wisdom teeth break through the gum, an infection develops in the area and causes pain. It can all happen suddenly, leaving you wondering what’s going on, or pain can develop gradually and you might think it’s something else.

Easy Ways to Relieve Wisdom Tooth Pain

If you’re having some pain around the back of your mouth and suspect it might be due to either an emerging wisdom tooth or a possible infection, you’re probably thinking of seeing your dentist, but perhaps you want to hold off a bit and see if the problem resolves itself and the pain goes away. If the pain is dull and throbbing and seems to be persistent, you might want to take an over-the-counter pain reliever.

This may help to ease the pain and let you get on with your day. But taking pain relief long term is not a permanent solution, and if the pain continues beyond several days, it’s time to make an appointment with your dentist to see what’s going on. Something else you can try to remedy the situation yourself is to regularly rinse your mouth out with warm and salty water; this can help to kill any bacteria in your mouth that may be causing an infection, and it will also aid in rinsing stuck food particles from between your teeth.

Pieces of ice are another way you can try to relieve wisdom pain yourself, especially if one or more are coming through and there’s no apparent problem, just some pain and discomfort associated with this final stage of your dental development. You can just apply them regularly to the teeth and gums, which will help to numb the area as well as reduce any swelling.

Professional Help for Wisdom Tooth Pain

If after all that, nothing worked and you still have wisdom tooth pain, you’ll need to see your dentist. They will carefully examine the area as well as possibly take an X-ray to see your wisdom teeth properly. If they’re coming in at an angle and not aligning with your other teeth and gums, your dentist might recommend an extraction.

If everything looks fine, however, your dentist may just prescribe some painkillers to help you deal with the pain, as well as a special mouthwash that will kill bacteria and prevent infections from taking hold as your wisdom teeth are developing. Whatever the case, as with any pain in your mouth, it should be taken seriously. Taking care of your oral health means looking after your overall health, and no pain should be left untreated if it continues over time — especially with wisdom tooth pain.

If you’re having wisdom tooth pain and are not sure what to do about it, contact The James Clinic today and our friendly dentists will be happy to advise. You can be sure of high levels of care and attention at all times, including during an initial examination. Get in touch now.

Dental Implants: The Pros and Cons

Dental Implants The Pros and Cons

Dental implants are one of the best solutions for replacing a lost tooth, but are they right for you? Here’s everything you need to know about the pros and cons of dental implants.

When you lose a tooth, everyday activities like eating, talking and even smiling can feel uncomfortable. Tooth loss can affect your mood and confidence and lead to long-term damage if left untreated.

Therefore, it’s important to treat and replace missing teeth as soon as possible. Dental implants are one of the best options for those suffering from tooth loss. They can end your discomfort and restore your smile.

The Pros and Cons of Dental Implants

Before replacing your missing teeth, you want to make sure implants are the right choice for you. Here are the pros and cons of dental implants to help you decide whether or not to go down the implant dentistry route.

The Pros: What Are the Advantages of Dental Implants?

Implants are long-term solutions, rather than quick fixes, and as such, they come with a wide range of benefits.

Dental Implants Look and Feel Like Natural Teeth

Dental implants have the appearance of real teeth. In fact, once your implant has been fitted, you’ll hardly be able to tell the difference between your replacement tooth and your real teeth.

As well as looking natural, implants won’t feel any different from your real teeth. The tooth implant will be anchored firmly into your jaw, so it will feel just as strong and stable as your existing teeth. You’ll be able to eat and talk as you normally would.

Dental Implants Can Last a Lifetime

Implants are a long-lasting tooth replacement solution. You may need to replace the crowns every 10-15 years, but if you look after the implants, they can last a lifetime.

Try to stick to a healthy lifestyle and keep on top of your dental hygiene. Avoid smoking and sugary foods such as sweet treats, fizzy drinks and junk food. Brush your teeth and gum line twice a day and have regular check-ups with your dentist.

Looking after your tooth implants will increase the likelihood of them lasting for many years to come.

Eat and Chew with Ease

Unlike dentures and bridges, eating and chewing with implants won’t really feel any different. This is because implants feel almost identical to your natural teeth.

Once the dental implant procedure is complete, there’s no limit to what you can eat. Whether you fancy crunchy snacks, chewy foods, or hot or cold drinks, you can eat and drink without concern — just remember not to overdo the sugary treats.

Dental Implants Prevent Bone Loss

The roots of your teeth encourage the strengthening of the jaw bone. When you lose a tooth, the bone around the site of the missing tooth can start to break down and disintegrate. This is known as periodontitis.

Dental implants are anchored into your jaw, much like your real teeth. The screw thread of the implant acts like as root of a natural tooth, so with dental implants, your jaw bone remains strong and you won’t experience bone loss.

Implants Are Easy to Look After

It’s important to look after your implants if you want them to last a lifetime, but that doesn’t mean they’re difficult to look after.

You should care for them in the same way you’d care for your real teeth, with daily brushing, regular check-ups and a healthy diet.

Implant Dentistry is Cost-Effective

Dental implants aren’t the cheapest solution to tooth loss, but as a long-term, and potentially life-long, solution, they’re highly cost-effective.

Once your implants have been fitted, you won’t have to pay out for them again, or at least not for a very long time.

It’s a one-time cost for many years of comfort and confidence. You’ll soon forget you ever had a missing tooth in the first place.

The Cons: What Are the Disadvantages of Dental Implants?

While the benefits far outweigh the disadvantages of dental implants, no procedure is right for everyone. Here are a few reasons why dental implants may not be the best choice for you.

You Have to Meet Set Requirements for Implant Dentistry

To get dental implants, you first need to meet certain criteria. As the procedure involves anchoring the implant to your jaw bone, if you’ve experienced significant bone loss as a result of losing teeth, there may not be enough for the dental implant to be successful.

You’ll also need to be in good physical health so that your jaw can recover fully from the dental implant surgery.

It’s also not advised for smokers to have dental implants fitted. Smoking can cause dental implants to fail, which can increase the risk of bone loss.

The Dental Implant Procedure Can Be Lengthy

If you’re looking for a quick fix, dental implant surgery is not for you. Far from consisting of a single dentist visit, the dental implant procedure often takes several months.

If you’re replacing an existing damaged tooth, this will first need to be removed. Your dentist will then need to prepare the tooth site before fitting the implant anchor.

Once the anchor has been fitted, you’ll need to wait several months while it heals and the surrounding bone grows. The final stage of the procedure involves placing the artificial tooth.

Cost of Dental Implants

Implants aren’t the cheapest fix for a lost tooth. They’re the best long-term solution, but as the procedure is lengthy, it can be quite costly.

Unfortunately, dental implants aren’t usually offered by the Health Service Executive, so you’ll need to have them fitted by a private dentist.

However, the cost of dental implants is worth it for the comfort, confidence and natural feel you’ll experience, and it’s the closest you’ll come to having your real tooth back. The James Clinic can also make treatments more affordable by offering financing options. On a finance plan, the total cost can be repaid over the course of a year or even longer.

Dental Implants Can Fail

The dental implant failure rate is the lowest it’s ever been, and the vast majority of patients won’t experience any issues. Only 5-10% of patients will experience dental implant failure, but it’s a risk that patients should be aware of.

Failure can be caused by gum disease, insufficient jawbone or other medical conditions such as diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis, but it can also be caused by poor dental hygiene or smoking.

To limit the risk of implant failure, your dentist will assess whether implants are the right solution for you during your initial consultation. If an implant does fail, it can be removed and you can try again three months later.

Our Verdict on Dental Implants

There are both pros and cons of dental implants, but the benefits more than outweigh the disadvantages.

If you’re a suitable candidate for implants, they’re definitely the best solution for tooth loss. They look and feel natural, so you can eat, talk and smile without a worry in the world.

Their long lifespan means that once the procedure is over, you can sit back, relax and enjoy your new smile for many years to come.

If you’re thinking about getting dental implants or you want to know more, contact The James Clinic today. Our highly experienced dentists are always happy to advise and want to help you find the best solution for you and your smile. Get in touch now.


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