TMJ

Everything you need to know about TMJ disorders

Have you ever woken up with a sore jaw, struggled to chew your breakfast, or caught yourself clenching your teeth during a stressful day? If so, you might be one of the many grappling with TMJ disorders without even realising it. 

This jaw-related disorder can be more than just a temporary discomfort; it’s a dental issue affecting many people’s daily lives. We unpack everything you need to know about TMJ disorders so that you can be informed and know when to take action.

What is TMJ?

TMJ stands for the Temporomandibular Joint, which is the hinge connecting your jaw to the temporal bones of your skull, situated in front of your ears. This joint allows you to move your jaw so you can talk, chew, and yawn. 

However, the term TMJ is commonly used to refer to a range of disorders affecting this joint — a condition more accurately described as Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD).

Symptoms of TMJ disorders

TMJ disorders lead to an array of symptoms, some of which may surprise you. Here are the most common ones to look out for:

  • Pain or tenderness in your jaw
  • Aching pain in and around your ear
  • Difficulty or discomfort while chewing
  • A clicking or grating sensation when opening your mouth or chewing
  • The joint locking, making it a challenge to open or close your mouth

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s important to consult with a dental professional like those at JJS Dentistry, who can provide a proper diagnosis and tailored treatment plan.

Causes of TMJ disorders

The causes of TMJ disorders can vary, often making diagnosis and treatment a challenge. However, the most common causes include:

Treating TMJ disorders

Treatment for TMJ disorders ranges from simple self-care practices to more advanced medical interventions. 

You may need to adjust to eating softer foods to rest the jaw and apply ice or heat to the affected area. In more severe cases, you may need pain relievers or muscle relaxants. Additionally, physical therapy and oral splints may also be necessary.

How to prevent TMJ disorders

While not all cases of TMJ disorders can be avoided, there are some ways to reduce your risk:

  • Good posture will help to reduce neck and facial tension
  • Avoid chewing gum and biting your nails
  • Use ergonomic setups for work and leisure activities to avoid strain on your neck and jaw
  • Limit stress
  • Regularly visit your dentist for check-ups

At JJS Dentistry, we understand how TMJ disorders can impact your daily life and well-being. By staying informed, you can take proactive steps toward managing this condition. 

If you suspect you’re experiencing a TMJ disorder, it’s essential to seek professional advice. Our team is here to help you navigate the symptoms and find the best treatment for your needs.

trends

10 New Dental Trends to Watch in 2024

2024 is a year that promises exciting advancements in the world of dentistry. At JJS Dentistry, we’re always at the forefront of dental innovations, and we’re thrilled to share with you the emerging trends shaping the future of dental care.

  1. The Rise of AI and Machine Learning in Dentistry

This year, we’re witnessing a significant leap in the integration of AI and machine learning in dental practices. These technologies are revolutionising everything from diagnostic procedures to treatment planning. 

  1. Eco-Friendly Practices

Sustainability is no longer just a buzzword; it’s a necessity. In a commitment to the planet, dental practices are offering everything from biodegradable toothbrushes to environmentally friendly office practices. 

  1. Tele-Dentistry

Tele-dentistry has evolved from a pandemic necessity to a convenient aspect of dental care. This year, expect more virtual consultations and follow-ups, providing you with expert dental advice from the comfort of your home. 

JJS Dentistry is at the forefront, offering virtual consultations that are just a click away.

  1. Advanced 3D Printing

3D printing technology is changing the way dental prosthetics are made. This year, we’re seeing more precise and faster production of dental crowns, bridges, and even braces, reducing wait times and improving treatment outcomes.

Our state-of-the-art dental prosthetic lab makes dental treatments quicker, more accurate, and more comfortable than ever.

  1. Holistic Dental Health

In 2024, the focus is not just on teeth but overall oral health and its connections to your general well-being. At JJS Dentistry, we believe in a holistic approach that looks beyond your teeth and gums. We’re here to advise you on diet, lifestyle, and habits that promote overall health.

  1. Innovative Pain Management Techniques

Gone are the days when a visit to the dentist was synonymous with discomfort and pain. The latest trends in pain management, including laser therapy and advanced local anaesthetics, are making dental procedures more comfortable than ever. 

Your comfort is vital at JJS Dentistry, and we’re constantly updating our pain management techniques to ensure a pain-free experience.

  1. Personalised Dental Care

Every smile is unique, and personalised care is becoming the gold standard in dentistry. This year, we’re using advanced diagnostic tools and treatment modalities to tailor our services to each individual’s needs. We recognise that personalised care is the key to effective treatment and patient satisfaction.

  1. More Accessible Cosmetic Dentistry

Cosmetic dentistry is not just for celebrities but everyone who desires a brighter smile. With advancements in materials and techniques, cosmetic procedures like veneers, teeth whitening, and dental bonding are becoming more accessible and effective. 

At JJS Dentistry, we’re here to help you achieve the smile of your dreams with cutting-edge cosmetic treatments.

  1. Dental Health Apps

Digital health apps are making strides in dental care, offering everything from appointment scheduling to reminders for brushing and flossing. These apps are great tools for enhancing your dental care routine and keeping you connected with your dentist.

  1. Focus on Preventative Care

2024 is seeing a stronger emphasis on preventative care. Regular check-ups, cleanings, and early interventions are key to maintaining oral health and preventing complex issues.

As we embrace these exciting trends this year, our commitment to providing exceptional, forward-thinking dental care remains steadfast. We’re not just about following trends; we’re about setting them.

Here’s to a year of innovation, health, and beautiful smiles!

Contact us to set up your first dental appointment in 2024.

braces

How to navigate the holiday season with braces

The holiday season is officially here, bringing its festive cheer and array of delicious treats. However, if you’re one of the many navigating this time with braces, you might be wondering if (and how) you can indulge without harming your dental appliance or ruining your orthodontic progress.

Don’t panic yet — we’re here to help you enjoy the holidays, braces and all, with certified tips to navigating all the festive delights.

1. Know your braces-friendly foods

Navigating a holiday feast with braces doesn’t mean you have to miss out. The key is knowing what’s safe to eat. Soft foods are your best friends. Think mashed potatoes, stuffing, and soft-cooked vegetables. For dessert, opt for jelly and custard or soft cookies. 

Remember: The gentler, the better for your braces.

2. Foods to avoid

Some holiday favourites can be a bit too challenging for braces. Hard, crunchy and sticky foods are on the naughty list. These include nuts, hard candies, caramel, and popcorn. 

Treats like these can damage your braces or get stuck, leading to a less-than-pleasant post-meal clean-up session.

3. Holiday sweets to enjoy with care

We know it’s tough to resist holiday sweets! The good news is you don’t have to skip them entirely — just be selective and moderate.

Enjoy softer sweets, and be sure to brush your teeth well afterwards to prevent cavities. Chocolates (without nuts or caramel) can be a safe bet. Moderation is key here.

4. How to navigate discomfort

Sometimes, braces can cause discomfort, and the last thing you want is for this to dampen your festive spirit. 

If your braces are new or recently adjusted, stick to softer foods. Over-the-counter pain relievers can also help.

5. Keep up with your oral hygiene

With all the feasting, staying on top of your oral hygiene is crucial. Make sure to brush and floss properly after eating, paying special attention to the areas around your braces. 

It’s the perfect time to show your teeth some extra love!

6. Stay hydrated

Drinking water throughout the day not only keeps you hydrated but also helps wash away food particles and sugars from your teeth. It’s a simple yet effective way to maintain your oral health.

7. Be prepared

Carry a braces care kit with you to holiday gatherings. Include a toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss. This way, you can quickly deal with any food particles that find their way into your braces, preventing any discomfort or embarrassment.

8. Consult your orthodontist

Before diving into the holiday festivities, it’s a good idea to have a quick check-up with your orthodontist. They can provide personalised advice and ensure your braces are in order.

9. Embrace the braces

Remember, braces are a part of your journey to a beautiful smile. Don’t be self-conscious about them. Instead, embrace them as a sign of the amazing transformation your teeth are undergoing.

Smile freely and enjoy the festive season!

10. Enjoy yourself

Most importantly, don’t let braces stop you from enjoying the holiday season. With some preparation and care, you can fully participate in all the merriment.

At JJS Dentistry, we understand the challenges that come with wearing braces, especially during a season filled with tempting treats. 

By following these tips, you can easily navigate the festive period and keep your orthodontic treatment on track.

Contact us to set up a consultation or braces check-up!

Holiday

10 Dental Tips for Surviving the Holiday Season

The holiday season is a time of joy, celebration, and indulgence. From festive feasts to sweet treats, it’s easy to get carried away with the festivities. However, amidst the merriment, it’s crucial not to neglect your oral. 

Here are 10 dental tips to help you navigate the holiday season with a bright and healthy smile.

1. Stay Hydrated

The holiday season often involves consuming sugary drinks and snacks. Counteract the effects of these indulgences by staying hydrated with water. Not only does water help rinse away food particles, but it also keeps your mouth moist, preventing dry mouth and promoting a healthy balance of saliva.

2. Moderation is Key

While it’s tempting to indulge in all the holiday goodies, moderation is key. Limit your intake of sugary treats and acidic beverages to reduce the risk of tooth decay. Consider enjoying sweets as part of a meal rather than snacking throughout the day.

3. Maintain Oral Hygiene Routine

Amidst the hustle and bustle of the season, don’t forget your daily oral hygiene routine. Brush your teeth for two minutes twice a day, and don’t skip flossing. Consistency is key to keeping your teeth and gums healthy.

4. Choose Teeth-Friendly Snacks

Opt for teeth-friendly snacks like fruits and vegetables. Apples, carrots and celery help stimulate saliva production and naturally clean your teeth. These snacks are not only nutritious but also contribute to your oral health.

5. Use a Straw

When enjoying beverages like sodas or cocktails, use a straw. This helps minimise direct contact between the drink and your teeth, reducing the risk of enamel erosion and staining. Choose reusable and eco-friendly straws to make it a sustainable choice.

6. Take Breaks Between Treats

Give your teeth some time to recover between treats. Instead of continuous snacking, allow breaks to let your saliva neutralise acids and repair your enamel. This simple practice can make a significant difference in protecting your dental health.

7. Keep Sugar-Free Gum Handy

Chewing sugar-free gum can be a helpful way to stimulate saliva production, which helps neutralise acids and wash away debris. Look for gum containing xylitol, a sugar substitute known for its dental benefits.

8. Schedule a Pre-Holiday Dental Check-Up

Before the festivities kick in, consider scheduling a pre-holiday dental check-up. This ensures any potential issues are addressed early, and you can enter the holiday season with confidence in your oral health.

9. DIY Oral Care Kit for Travel

If you’re travelling during the holidays, create a dental care kit. Include a toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, and mouthwash. These essentials ensure you can maintain your oral hygiene routine, even when away from home.

10. Start the New Year with a Dental Resolution

As the year comes to a close, consider making a dental resolution for the upcoming year. Whether it’s committing to regular dental check-ups, improving your flossing habits, or cutting back on sugar snacks, setting a goal can motivate you to prioritise your oral health in the new year.

Surviving the holiday season with a healthy smile is all about balance and mindful choices. By incorporating these dental tips into your festive celebrations, you can enjoy the holidays while keeping your oral health in check. 

Contact us at JJS Dentistry to schedule your pre-holiday check-up now!

Flossing

Everything You Have Ever Needed to Know About Flossing

At JJS Dentistry, we are committed to ensuring our patients are well-informed about every aspect of oral health. One cornerstone of dental hygiene often overlooked is flossing. While many diligently brush their teeth daily, the significance of flossing is frequently underestimated.

Let’s delve into why flossing should be a non-negotiable aspect of your dental care routine.

The importance of flossing

  1. Combat cavities between teeth

While brushing takes care of the outer surfaces of your teeth, it can’t reach the tiny spaces between them. Flossing ensures the food debris and plaque nestled in these crevices are removed, preventing the onset of cavities.

  1. Gum health and preventing gum disease

The plaque that builds up between teeth can lead to gum diseases like gingivitis. Regular flossing can prevent this build-up and keep your gums healthy and disease-free.

  1. Fight bad breath

Food particles trapped between the teeth can lead to bad breath. Flossing can keep your mouth fresh by eliminating these potential odour-causing culprits.

The right way to floss

Now that we’ve highlighted the importance of flossing let’s make sure you’re doing it correctly.

  1. Choose your floss

Different types of dental floss are available, from waxed to unwaxed, thick to thin, and even flavoured. Pick one that you feel comfortable with.

  1. Length matters

Tear off about 45 cm of floss. This length ensures you have a fresh section for each tooth.

  1. Wrapping technique

Start by wrapping the floss around each middle finger, leaving a few centimetres of floss to work with.

  1. The right motion

Hold the string tightly between your forefingers and thumbs. Gently slide it up and down between your teeth.

  1. Curving the floss

When you reach the gum line, curve the floss into a C-shape against one tooth and gently move it into the space between the gum and the tooth.

  1. Each tooth deserves attention

Don’t forget to floss the back of your last teeth. Use a fresh section of the floss as you move from one tooth to the next.

  1. Gentleness is key

Remember, your gums are sensitive. Avoid snapping the floss into the gums or flossing too roughly.

How often should you floss

In a perfect world, we would all floss after every meal to ensure no food remains lodged between our teeth. However, for most people, this might be impractical. Therefore, it’s essential to floss at least once a day. 

Making it a nighttime ritual can be especially beneficial, as it ensures your teeth are clean and free from food particles overnight.

The benefits of flossing

  • Regular flossing reduces the risk of cavities and gum diseases, ensuring a healthier mouth overall.
  • No more being self-conscious about bad breath during close conversations.
  • Regularly removing plaque and food particulars can lead to a brighter, more confident smile.
  • Preventing dental issues by maintaining good oral hygiene can help you avoid expensive treatments later on.

By committing to just a few minutes daily to floss correctly, you can reap the benefits of a healthier, brighter smile. Remember, a string of floss is your teeth’s best friend, so make it a daily habit.

If you have questions or need more tips on maintaining a healthy smile, don’t hesitate to reach out or schedule an appointment. Happy flossing!

summer

Get your smile in shape for summer with cosmetic dentistry

The balmy days of summer often come with countless photo opportunities: beach outings, family barbecues, and tropical getaways. Amidst the joys of summer, everyone desires a radiant smile to match the vibrancy of the season.

Thanks to advancements in cosmetic dentistry, achieving that picture-perfect smile is now more attainable than ever. We explore the popular cosmetic procedures available, their benefits and what they can do for you — making sure your smile is summer-ready!

With various treatments available, from quick fixes to transformative procedures, we at JJS Dentistry have a solution for every smile.

Teeth Whitening — A quick boost for dull teeth

What does it fix?

Teeth can become discoloured or stained over time due to various factors like coffee, red wine, and smoking. Teeth whitening is an efficient solution to remove these stubborn stains and boost your smile in the summer sun.

The benefits

  • Instant results: We can brighten your teeth in just one session by several shades.
  • Boosted self-confidence: A whiter smile can boost self-esteem, making one more willing to share their smile.

Signature JJS Veneers — The pathway to a flawless summer smile

What do they fix?

Veneers are porcelain or composite resin shells that adhere to the front surface of the teeth. They’re perfect for addressing chipped or broken teeth, severe discolouration, and uneven or misshapen teeth.

The benefits

  • Durability: With proper care, veneers can last up to 15 years.
  • Natural appearance: They’re custom-made to match the colour and shape of your natural teeth.
  • Stain resistance: Unlike natural teeth, porcelain is resistant to staining.

Dental Bonding — A cost-effective makeover

What does it fix?

Dental bonding uses a tooth-coloured composite resin to fix imperfections like small chips or cracks, gaps between the teeth, and discoloured teeth.

The benefits

  • Minimally invasive: Little to no removal of enamel is required.
  • Quick procedure: Dental bonding is often completed in a single visit.
  • Affordability: It’s generally less expensive than other cosmetic treatments.

Clear Aligners — Straightening teeth discreetly

What do they fix?

Clear aligners offer a clear alternative to braces, effectively addressing crooked or misaligned teeth, bite issues and crowded teeth.

The benefits

  • Nearly invisible: Clear aligners are discreet, making them a favourite among adults.
  • Removable: Unlike traditional braces, you can remove clear aligners while eating or for special occasions.
  • Comfort: They tend to be more comfortable without metal wires or brackets.

Smile Makeover — Comprehensive transformation

How will it help me?

A smile makeover is a comprehensive approach to completely transform your smile. It can address multiple concerns, from discolouration to alignment, combining various treatments tailored to your individual needs.

The benefits

  • Personalised approach: The procedures are tailored to meet individual aesthetic goals.
  • Comprehensive results: Addresses multiple issues simultaneously for a complete transformation.
  • Increased confidence: A total smile makeover can lead to a remarkable boost in self-esteem and overall satisfaction.

Summer is a time of brightness, warmth, and showing off your beautiful smile! By investing in cosmetic dentistry, you’re not only investing in a beautiful smile but also in renewed confidence. 

Get in touch with us to find out how we can help you transform your smile in time for summer!

Woman

Women’s Month and the journey of a woman’s dental health

Throughout the intricate journey of a woman’s life, her body undergoes profound changes, many of which impact her dental health (believe it or not). From the blossoming phase of pregnancy to the transformative period of menopause, oral care is paramount. 

At JJS Dentistry, we understand these unique challenges and are deeply committed to providing holistic and preventative care tailored to the evolving needs of every woman.

1. Pregnancy and new beginnings

Pregnancy is a time of wonder, but it’s also a phase where diligent oral care is of utmost importance. You experience hormonal fluctuations that can enhance your susceptibility to gum disease. Acid reflux and morning sickness are also common symptoms of pregnancy and can expose teeth to stomach acids, potentially leading to enamel erosion,

Our solutions

We provide regular check-ups to monitor and preemptively address emerging oral concerns. In addition, our team offer expert guidance on tailored hygiene practices to navigate this delicate period.

2. Motherhood and professional pursuits

Balancing personal and professional lives often leaves little room for self-care, and dental health can sometimes take a backseat. Overlooked dental appointments and inconsistent oral care routines become the norm, while stress-induced oral issues (like teeth grinding) further damage your teeth.

Our solutions

We offer a flexible schedule and multiple locations to accommodate the busy schedule of a modern woman. Plus, our comprehensive treatments can help restore your smile and educate you on the importance of regular dental care.

3. Approaching menopause and navigating the transition

As women edge closer to menopause, they go through unique dental challenges that demand specialised attention. These include hormonal shifts that cause dry mouth and increase the risk of cavities, as well as potential gum sensitivity and a heightened risk of gum disease.

Our solutions

At JJS Dentistry, we offer personalised treatments and recommendations to manage and alleviate symptoms of dry mouth. We also emphasise the importance of hydration and the right oral care products to protect sensitive gums.

4. Menopause and beyond

Menopause marks the beginning of a new chapter, but it’s also a period where oral health requires focused care. You have a higher risk of osteoporosis which can impact the health of teeth and jaws, and you experience changes in taste and heightened gum sensitivity.

Our solutions

We conduct thorough dental assessments to evaluate your jaw-bone health and provide dietary guidance to ensure the intake of essential nutrients for optimum dental health.

At JJS Dentistry, we are not just observers — we are partners in ensuring every phase of a woman’s life is accompanied by a healthy, radiant smile. 

With our emphasis on dentistry and preventative care, we have the tools and expertise to face each stage confidently and gracefully. Your smile’s journey is our journey too!

Get in touch to book your women’s dental health appointment today.

Risks of untreated sleep apnea

What are the risks of untreated sleep apnea?

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a breathing-related condition whereby your airways get blocked when you sleep, leading to snoring, poor sleep and difficulty breathing.

In most cases, the partners of sleep apnea sufferers notice the signs and symptoms. If you or your partner show signs, it’s essential to take action right away. When left untreated, obstructive sleep apnea can lead to many issues. 

Risks of sleep apnea

Episodes of apnea are pauses in breathing while you sleep. These result in reduced oxygen levels that can affect your overall health, brain function and immune system.

The reduced oxygen supply to the lungs also leads to less oxygen supply to your blood, forcing the heart to work harder to circulate what little oxygen there is. This triggers the release of stress hormones, such as adrenaline, in your body.

Over time, the cardiovascular system becomes overtaxed, resulting in a state of inflammation within your body.

Patients with sleep apnea may experience disturbances in their breathing hundreds of times per night.

The vicious cycle of inflammation

This state of inflammation within the body puts you at a higher risk for the following conditions:

  • ADHD becomes worse
  • Depression and mood swings
  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart attack
  • Higher risk of heart failure or worsening of heart failure
  • More likely to develop heart arrhythmias or irregular heartbeat
  • Stroke
  • Obesity
  • Increased risk of work-related or driving accidents
  • Shorter lifespan of 58 years on average (much lower than the average lifespan of 78 years for men and 83 years for women)

From the above, you can see that having chronic inflammation within your body damages arteries, organs, joints, and so much more. If left unchecked, it can increase your risk of developing chronic diseases.

At JJS Dentistry, we are passionate about reducing inflammation in the mouth and the body. We believe that treating a dental problem is no longer enough, and we are dedicated to addressing your health holistically by investigating and addressing the root cause of your oral and overall health issues.

Our goal is to ultimately assist you in boosting your vitality and health so that you can live your best life.

Contact us for a consultation today.

Sleep Apnea

9 warning signs of Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Most sleep apnea sufferers go undiagnosed because they are unaware they have a sleep-related breathing disorder. Unfortunately, sleep apnea signs and symptoms are not always obvious, and many cases are not discovered by the sufferer but by a loved one.

Here are a few of the signs and symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA):

1. You wake up feeling tired or drowsy during the day

If you suffer from chronic interruptions to your deep restorative sleep coupled with oxygen deprivation while asleep, you will eventually feel weary and tired throughout the day.

So, if you wake up feeling unrefreshed and struggle to stay awake during the day despite having a whole night of sleep, you may suffer from obstructive sleep apnea.

Good quality sleep promotes the healthy functioning of a broad range of vital body functions. Whereas inadequate sleep may significantly influence one’s health, leading to several disorders ranging from hormone disturbance to immunological failure.

2. You snore while sleeping

Snoring, snorting, and gasping for air are all common sleep apnea warning signs. The louder the snore, the higher the likelihood of sleep apnea.

Most often, the person snoring is not even aware that they do, and it is usually the bed partner that identifies that the sufferer has a problem. However, it’s important to note that not everyone who snores has sleep apnea.

3. You toss and turn at night

Tossing and turning uncomfortably during sleep is a common finding in obstructive sleep apnea. Getting good sleep is often difficult for people who suffer from sleep apnea, and restlessness is often the result of the brain sending signals to wake up and resume breathing.

4. You wake up to go to the bathroom multiple times a night

When it comes to key warning symptoms of sleep apnea, waking up at night to use the bathroom is as prevalent as snoring. This can be a strong sign of sleep apnea, especially if a person is not drinking excessive fluids before bed.

However, waking up once or twice a night to use the bathroom is typical for the general population. It’s only when it becomes excessive that you should be concerned.

5. You wake up with a dry mouth

Waking up in the morning with a dry mouth or the feeling of a sore throat is common in obstructive sleep apnea sufferers and can be seen as a warning sign.

This is usually because of sleeping with an open mouth or open-mouth breathing that dries out the airway.

6. You have a stiff jaw and headache in the morning

When you have pauses in your breathing due to the airway collapsing during sleep, your brain sends a signal to the muscles in the jaw to move in order to open the airways so that the oxygen supply to the lungs can be re-established.

These repetitive jaw movements can lead to pain within the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) and the muscles within the head and neck resulting in morning headaches.

7. You are forgetful and struggle to concentrate

Consistent poor-quality sleep can affect the way your brain functions over time. For example, people with sleep apnea have disruptive and poor sleep that can lead to brain fog and forgetfulness during the day.

Other indications can be a weakened immune system and difficulty concentrating on your work. 

8. Your partner says you have pauses in your breathing while asleep, followed by choking/gasping

Apnea episodes refer to periods of snoring, followed by pauses in breathing and then gasping for breath. These can occur hundreds of times in one night of sleep, disrupting your and your partner’s sleep. 

9. You have acid reflux

Having acid reflux can cause obstructions to the airways that bring on snoring and sleep apnea at night. On the other hand, pressure in your lungs due to sleep apnea can cause greater acid reflux.

The two are intrinsically linked and can cause significant discomfort if not addressed.

Obstructive sleep apnea is not a condition that should be ignored. While snoring can be a warning sign, sleep apnea is more than just snoring.

A thorough screening with your dentist at JJS Dentistry, followed by a complete sleep study if necessary, can assist you in determining the cause of your problems. If you have sleep apnea, we will develop a custom treatment plan to address your symptoms, improve your sleep, help you feel better and achieve greater overall health and vitality.

For further information on sleep apnea, diagnosis and treatment, schedule your Sleep consultation at JJS Dentistry.

Dental health during pregnancy

Dental health during pregnancy

Dental health is likely your least priority when you fall pregnant. What could pregnancy possibly have to do with your oral healthcare? A lot, actually!

Unfortunately, pregnancy increases your risk of getting specific dental health problems and can lead to complications. Therefore, it’s vital to let your dentist know you are pregnant and regularly visit to receive optimal care during this delicate time.

How pregnancy affects your dental health

When expecting, moms need to be extra cautious of how they care for their bodies and what they put in them, as they run the risk of impacting the baby later on. This is especially crucial for oral hygiene. Allowing your oral health to deteriorate can result in cavities and decay, but it can do the same for your unborn child.

Gum disease

Pregnant women experience significant hormonal changes that can affect how their body functions. For example, higher levels of oestrogen can lead to gingivitis (gum disease) and more severe symptoms. In fact, around 75% of pregnant women have early-stage gum disease. This is because oestrogen elevates your inflammatory response to bacteria.

Cavities

Changes in behaviour, hormones and what you eat during pregnancy can cause frequent tooth decay and cavities, which you can pass on to your baby and cause issues for them later in life. 

Pregnancy tumours

Too much plaque can lead to non-cancerous pregnancy tumours on the gums. These are swollen, red lumps that form between the teeth and typically go away after giving birth. It’s essential not to pick at these tumours as they bleed easily. In rare cases, you may need a doctor to remove the tumours.

Tooth erosion

Frequent and recurring morning sickness can expose your teeth to too much acid and cause the enamel to weaken and erode. Erosion can lead to decay, discolouration and even tooth loss. Take note if you have frequent nausea and vomiting, and chat with your dentist about ways to prevent tooth erosion.

Signs to look out for during pregnancy

Should you start to see signs or symptoms or dental health concerns, set up a consultation with your dentist urgently for early diagnosis and treatment.

  • Bad breath, even when brushing frequently
  • Lumps or sores on the gums
  • Swollen, red and bleeding gums
  • Receding gum line
  • Toothache or mouth pain

Treating dental conditions during pregnancy

Visiting the dentist while pregnant is completely safe. We are trained to care for all patients and have a wealth of knowledge when it comes to various conditions and how they impact you and your baby.

If you are experiencing dental health problems, visit us, and we will perform a comprehensive assessment and diagnosis, followed by a step-by-step treatment plan.

Pregnancy-safe treatments include:

  • X-rays: Dental X-rays are completely safe during pregnancy and won’t cause any harm to you or your unborn child. We use dental X-rays to help diagnose specific conditions and assess the health of your teeth and jaw.
  • Medication: We can prescribe medications like antibiotics and painkillers to alleviate any symptoms or infections you have.
  • Local anaesthesia: It is safe to administer gentle sedation techniques that numb specific areas we treat during pregnancy.

Maintaining your dental health during pregnancy

The most effective ways to keep your oral health in check during this special time are with a proper oral hygiene routine and regular dental visits.

  • Brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste and floss twice a day
  • Visit the dentist every 6 months for dental check-ups and teeth cleanings
  • Eat a nutritious diet and limit sugary foods and drinks such as sweets and sodas
  • Use antacids and mouth rinses for frequent morning sickness

Ensure that you inform your dentist of the following as well:

  • If you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant
  • The medications you are on
  • If you are experiencing any dental health concerns
  • If you have a history of dental conditions
  • If you have a high-risk pregnancy

Find out more about JJS Dentistry and our treatments.

Dental resin bonding

The ins and outs of dental resin bonding

Dental resin bonding offers a simple, pain-free solution to bring back your smile. The treatment is done by applying a thin coat of resin to the surface of the teeth. And in this way, we can transform your smile in one sitting. However, bonding is not always the solution for everyone, and we do a thorough assessment before deciding if it’s the best treatment for you.

What does resin bonding treat?

Resin bonding can repair damaged teeth, hide discolouration and protect chips and cracks in your teeth. It’s also an effective way to improve the shape and size of your teeth and lighten their colour. In addition, the procedure doesn’t require any sedation, making it non-invasive, and you can rest assured knowing you have gained a natural smile with no sign of damage or stains.

Who should get resin bonding?

Resin bonding is ideal for chipped or cracked teeth, discolouration, gaps between the teeth or small teeth. Dr JJ Serfontein will advise if this treatment is right for you after thoroughly assessing your teeth and discussing your concerns.

If you suffer from misaligned or missing teeth, an overbite or underbite, or have a complex case of damaged teeth, then resin bonding is not the solution for you. And if this is the case, Dr JJ Serfontein will work with you to create a treatment plan that addresses all of your concerns.

Are there any risks?

Luckily, there aren’t any significant risks to be worried about with resin bonding. The only issue to note is that resin isn’t as strong as your natural teeth and is more prone to chipping or separating from your existing teeth. There is also the chance of your dental bonding discolouring if you smoke or consume foods and drinks that stain.

The condition of your existing teeth, affordability and goals all play a role in whether you will receive resin bonding.

What is the cost of resin bonding?

Various factors play a role in the cost of your resin bonding procedure. For example, we consider the treatment’s location, how much resin we use and our expertise when calculating the final amount.

Dr JJ Serfontein will work with you to understand your budget and concerns and advise on an estimated amount once your treatment plan has been finalised.

What you can expect

The first step is always a discussion between you and Dr JJ Serfontein about your needs, goals and budget. We want to assess your condition and understand what you hope to achieve.

Our composite resin bonding treatment is safe and painless and can easily be done in one session. Dr Serfontein will first remove some of the enamel from the teeth’ surface so that the resin can be appropriately shaped.

We then apply the bonding agent and shape the resin on top of each tooth. This is where we effectively implement our extensive expertise and artistry. Shaping the resin takes immense skill and experience, both of which Dr JJ Serfontein has extensively.

Once we are happy with the shaping, the resin is cured using a special, and we polish the teeth for a final touch. As this is a non-invasive procedure, you can resume your usual daily activities without downtime.

See one of our incredible transformations below!

The lovely lady needed her smile enhanced, so we decided the best treatment would be a gum lift and resin bonding.

Not sure if dental resin bonding is right for you? Find out more here.

Caring for resin bonding

Taking care of your dental bonding will mostly happen at home. It’s essential to continue with regular daily hygiene to ensure the longevity of your bonding. Here’s how:

  • Brush your teeth twice daily
  • Floss daily
  • Use a mouthwash regularly
  • Don’t bite on hard food or objects
  • Avoid smoking and foods and drinks that stain, such as coffee
  • Visit us for your bi-annual check-ups and cleanings

If you experience a chip or stain on your dental bonding, contact us as soon as possible to set up an appointment.

Learn more about our cosmetic dentistry procedures.

The fundamentals of dental photography

The fundamentals of dental photography

Dental photography is an essential aspect of any dental practice. Taking comprehensive photographs of patient cases can uplift a practice by showing the incredible results they are able to achieve and is especially useful for aesthetic dentists looking to create a portfolio of work.

We pride ourselves on using dental imagery to educate our patients and showcase our incredible work to prospective clients.

Uses for dental photography

Dental photography is mainly used to grow and market dental practices, but it has potential for so much more. We now have the technology and knowledge to create pristine and clear images of the teeth and mouth that can be reviewed by new and potential clients, colleagues and ourselves.

These are just a few of the vital uses of dental photography.

Documenting cases

Documenting each new patient’s case is exceptionally crucial for any dental practice. It marks a new patient joining the practice and can be referred to for progress tracking and medical-legal purposes. Our practice is equipped with advanced modern technology to capture each case we treat for client and practice benefits. In addition, we will continue to capture your progress with our dental photography during your treatment to maintain a detailed portfolio.

Educating patients

Taking comprehensive photographs can serve as examples to educate clients. Using existing images, we can inform patients about their condition and the treatment options available and show them examples of what their results can be. Furthermore, dental photography allows us to map out a patient’s treatment plan and explain improvements or setbacks in detail. It’s essential to keep clients informed about their progress and oral health, and dental photography is one of the most efficient ways to do this.

Marketing

At JJS Dentistry, we love to showcase our award-winning smiles. Dental photography is a great tool for inviting new patients as they show what the practice is capable of and its success rate. This is most common with before and after photographs, which are popular for branding elements that can make a practice stand out. We have an extensive gallery of dental photography that we equip online to inform potential clients about our cases, procedures and results.

Assessing outcomes

By building up an extensive portfolio of work, dentists can start to evaluate and predict specific outcomes from cases. This is helpful for the practice to understand its capabilities and shortcomings and informs patients of the expectations they should have for their case. In addition, detailed dental photographs captured during each session allow us to track the progress of treatment plans and assess if we are on the right path.

How dental photography is performed

Dental photography includes two main image types – intraoral (within the mouth) and extraoral (the entire face). Taking dental photographs is non-invasive and uses specific tools to capture clear, high-quality images, such as a high-definition camera, retractor equipment and mirrors.

We use these tools to take close-up photographs of the teeth, inside the mouth and the whole smile. It’s essential to take enough images to capture the condition of the mouth so that we can assess your oral health properly. However, this will only take a few minutes. Our photography experts are highly skilled to capture dental photographs for the practice.

Communication is a significant aspect of dental photography, so we will always request your consent before taking any images and explain the usage of the images. Our expert team will capture your images and keep them on file. These images allow us to map out your treatment plan and provide an in-depth analysis of your condition.

See examples of our dental photography here.

How to protect your teeth when travelling

How to protect your teeth when travelling

The weather is heating up, the kids are out of school, and many of us are on break from work. It’s vacation time! Whether you’re hopping on an airplane to enjoy a tropical location or you’re road tripping with the family, it’s important to still take care of your oral health. In this blog, we’ll take a look at some easy ways to protect your teeth while having a blast on your vacation. 

Tips to protect your teeth

Get a dental check-up before your vacation

Your regular dental check-up is an opportunity to prevent the hassle of finding a dentist at your holiday destination for something that could have been avoided. If it’s time for your bi-annual check-up, then fit it into your schedule before your departure. You can book an appointment with JJS Dentistry here.

Uphold your daily oral hygiene routine

You may be on vacation, but your oral hygiene isn’t! Remember to pack your toothbrush, toothpaste, and dental floss. If you have a small suitcase, consider buying travel-sized items. Be sure to pack your toothbrush in a separate, sealable plastic bag and air dry it when you get to your destination. Forgot your dental kit? You can always pick up these from a corner store when you arrive at your destination.

Be conscious of what you eat and drink

You may be tempted to overindulge when you’re on holiday, but this can negatively impact our oral health. Not to worry- a few simple swaps will keep your mouth healthy, and you’ll still get to enjoy some of your favourite treats! Replace sugary foods with fruits and yoghurt, and alcohol and cool drinks with water or pure fruit juice (check the label to see if it’s 100% fruit juice with no added sugar). Add some veggies into the mix instead of simply carbo-loading. It’s okay to spoil yourself and your family with a treat here and there; just don’t go overboard. 

Find clean water sources

When travelling overseas, it’s important to be aware of the safety of the drinking water. In developing countries, about 80% of illnesses are linked to poor water and sanitation conditions. For this reason, it’s recommended to only drink bottled water if you’re travelling in a third-world country. If bottled water is safer, then it’s also best to brush and rinse your mouth with bottled water. 

Prepare for dental emergencies

Before planning your trip, ensure that you know where the nearest hospitals and dentists are. For emergency dental advice, Dr JJ Seerfontein is reachable on +27 82 612 4834. While we may not be able to consult with you in person, we could possibly give you advice over the phone. However, dental emergencies will require a visit to the nearest hospital or dentist. 

Wear a mouthguard for protection

Did you know that chlorine in swimming pools can cause damage and staining on our teeth? This is because chlorine has a higher pH level than saliva and the salivary proteins decompose quicker, leading to the formation of brown tartar. If you’re planning on swimming, then wearing a mouthguard may be wise. In addition, when playing a contact sport such as soccer, basketball or rugby, a mouthguard will protect your teeth against blows to the mouth. 

Book an appointment to protect your teeth

The festive season is a time for fun and spending valuable, quality time with your family and friends. You can have a ball of a time while still taking steps to maintain your best oral health. If you’re in need of a dental check-up and cleaning after your holiday splurges, book an appointment here for the new year. For an even brighter and whiter smile, consider trying our in-office teeth whitening procedure.

Ceramic vs composite resin veneers

Veneers are an easy and quick way to get a beautiful new smile. It can be the ideal treatment for people with teeth that have stains, chips or gaps. 

One of the most frequent questions we get at our practice is what type of material is used for veneers? Ceramic material or composite resin? In this blog, we’ll take a look at the difference between ceramic and composite resin materials and when we use each application. 

Types of veneers

Ceramic 

Ceramic veneers make use of teeth-coloured ceramic materials like zirconia that are durable and resistant to bacterial infection. These veneers are less likely to accumulate plaque and bacteria, and they resist irritating your gums or neighbouring natural teeth. Dentists can also match them to just about any colour. 

Lifespan: ten to fifteen years, depending on how well you look after them

Are ceramic veneers right for me?

Those who have significant tooth enamel loss are excellent candidates for dental veneers since ceramic material is much more durable. The dentist must eliminate a portion of enamel to create space for the porcelain. However, you still need adequate enamel to maintain a strong bond.

Composite

Composite bonding is a cosmetic dental procedure in which a type of composite resin material is moulded on your teeth to give the appearance of a straighter, whiter smile. Dentists use resin to correct chips, gaps teeth and staining in both fillings and teeth. Unlike ceramic placement, which can take more than two visits, composite resin veneers can be complete in one appointment. 

Lifespan: 3-5 years, depending on how well you look after them.

Is Composite Resin Veneers Right For me?

Composite resin bonding isn’t the right treatment for everyone. If your smile is crooked because of an underbite or overbite, then this treatment won’t be able to correct it. Composite material is primarily for those who seek a cosmetic solution for teeth that are otherwise healthy. So, we only use composite material for patients who have minimal enamel loss. 

Looking after your veneers

Whether you have ceramic or composite resin veneers, it’s important to take proper care of them. 

Oral hygiene: We suggest brushing and flossing just as you would your regular teeth. Proper daily brushing and the use of non-abrasive fluoride toothpaste will help maintain your veneers. 

Foods to avoid: Avoid biting directly into hard foods (e.g. raw carrots, ice, raw carrots, nuts and corn). Instead, chop them up into smaller bite-sized pieces. Consider limiting coffee and other stain-inducing foods and beverages. 

Regular check-ups: Also, remember a dental check-up and cleaning at least every 6 months. Check-ups and cleanings will help remove build-up plaque that your toothbrush can not remove alone. If plaque builds up on your teeth, your veneers might need to be removed to access the area.

Bear in mind that you’ll need to replace your veneers at some stage, no matter how well you take care of them. However, proper oral hygiene and regular dental check-ups will help them last longer. 

Other treatment options

In some cases, veneers are not suitable and you will require more in-depth work, like adjusting your bite with braces. 

The only way to determine if veneers are suitable for you is to visit a Cosmetic Dentist. At his practice, JJ Serfontein does a complete examination of their teeth and oral health. Following thorough consideration for your health, he will discuss all your possible treatment options and work with you to achieve your best smile.

Check out some of the amazing results we’ve achieved with veneers and other cosmetic treatments

To learn more about composite vs resin materials, contact us or check out our Instagram post

Minimally invasive dentistry

Minimally invasive dentistry

Minimally invasive dentistry is a term that includes numerous procedures. All these procedures are performed with the aim of conserving and improving the patient’s oral health, providing healthy tooth structure. 

At JJS Dentistry, we use a minimally invasive approach to remove as little as possible of the tooth structure. At the same time, our goal is to fix the problem and improve your oral health. We achieve all of this with the latest scientific advances, modern tools and techniques. 

Let’s take a look at minimally invasive dental procedures and how they can improve your smile and oral health.

The advantages of minimally invasive dentistry

Compared to invasive extractions and restorations, minimally invasive treatments offer the following. They are:  

  • Are considerably less expensive.
  • Involve significantly less discomfort and distress.
  • Preserve tooth structure, appearance and function 
  • Help to avoid repeated cycles of repair.

Types of minimally invasive dentistry techniques

Sealants

Dental sealants are plastic coatings that we use to protect the teeth from the harmful bacteria that leads to tooth decay. Sealants are an effective, safe, and fast way to protect your teeth from damage, caries, and other problems. The process is fast; it takes just a few minutes to place a sealant on each tooth. What’s more, the entire procedure is pain-free.

Tooth-coloured fillings

Tooth-coloured fillings are dental fillings that mimic and restore the natural appearance of a tooth. The strength of the adhesion between the tooth and material allows us to reduce the removal of tooth structure as compared with traditional fillings. Also, these fillings are a safer and healthier alternative to traditional silver amalgam fillings.

In addition to rebuilding teeth that have decay or fractures, tooth-coloured fillings are also used to replace old amalgam silver fillings. The treatment process involves the skillful use of dental composite, a mouldable tooth-coloured material with a paste-like consistency made from fillers and glass resins and fillers.

Inlays and onlays

We use inlay and onlays to restore the form of the teeth after we perform a certain procedure. These restorations are mainly used to repair back teeth with mild to moderate decay. A major advantage of these restorations is their durability as well as the ability to strengthen teeth.

Gum contouring

Gum contouring shapes your gums to fit your teeth structure. It also results in a less gummy smile. Similarly to traditional gum contouring, a laser gum lift can achieve a gum line more in line with your facial features. However, unlike a conventional gum lift, a laser gum lift is less invasive and painful.

Bonding

Bonding is an inexpensive and effective fix for cracks or small chips in the teeth and for closing small gaps. With the advancement of both techniques and materials, bonding has become the treatment of choice for early erosion and minimally invasive dentistry. This technique allows us to restore your teeth to their original shape and function without cutting them.

Adult braces

At JJS Dentistry, we offer minimally invasive orthodontics for adults. Before we start the treatment process, we use reduction stents and diagnostic mockups to determine the result. Also, we use Digital Smile Design tools to help us analyse the issue and calculate the best way to minimise the loss of tooth structure.

Get your minimally invasive treatments today

Above all, minimally invasive dentistry on treating common dental issues and preventing and reducing the risks of these issues. Also, we use high quality, long-lasting materials to provide effective treatments with minimal pain. 

If you’re interested to learn more about how minimally invasive dentistry can enhance the aesthetics and health of your smile, contact us today. We’ll assess your teeth, gums and facial structure. Using this information, we create a custom treatment plan to meet your unique needs. Our team has vast experience creating stunning smiles for people across the globe.