Happy. Healthy. Smiles. That's What We're All About.
At Advance Your Health Dental, our general Calgary dentist and our dedicated dental team always strive to make your smile both healthy and beautiful by providing a positive dental experience. At our dentist-owned general dentistry practice, we do this by always striving to ensure that you feel comfortable and confident at every dental visit by answering all of your questions, providing written estimates, requesting pre-determinations from dental insurance companies, direct billing your dental insurance company, being available for your dental emergency, offering week-end, early morning and evening appointments and always striving to exceed your expectations.
Our Calgary dental office is pleased to offer to our patients the following general dental services:
- Sedation Dentistry
- Cosmetic Dentistry
- Family & General Dentistry
- Extractions and fillings
- Dental Implants
- Implant Supported Dentures
- Crowns, Veneers & Bridges
- Dental Hygiene Cleanings
- Calgary Emergency Dentistry
BRUXISM: Do You Grind or Clench Your Teeth?
Teeth clenching or grinding is known as bruxism and is a very common problem. In fact, many people suffer from teeth grinding or clenching and are not even aware that they have it until their Calgary dentist diagnoses it. Bruxism can occur in both adults and children and is often related to stress, although it can also have other medical causes such as sleeping disorders.
Bruxism can cause extensive damage to your teeth and jaw. Most often, teeth grinding or clenching occurs while you are sleeping, but some people notice that they are grinding or clenching their teeth during the day.
Bruxism can be diagnosed by your Calgary dentist with a visual inspection of your teeth. Some of the signs and symptoms that you may be suffer from either or both of grinding or clenching your teeth are:
- teeth that are visibly worn
- worn tooth enamel
- fractured teeth
- cracked or chipped teeth
- flat teeth
- loose teeth
- headaches, often in the temple regions
- pain or a dull ache in your jaw joint or muscles
- tooth pain or sensitivity
- ear pain, with the cause being unrelated to any ear issues
- disruption to your sleep
WHAT CAN BE DONE ABOUT BRUXISM?
If you are suffering from bruxism, your treatment will depend upon a variety of factors, including the cause of your bruxism.
Our Calgary dentist, Dr. Dirk Thompson, has found that his patients respond quite favourable to a custom bruxism appliance that you use while you are sleeping. If you notice that you are grinding or clenching your teeth during the day, our dentist may recommend that you wear your bruxism appliance while you are awake as well.
Tooth Extractions By Our General Calgary Dentist: What You Should Know
Wherever possible, our Calgary dentist’s main goal is to always save your tooth. Unfortunately, in some instances, this is not possible, including where there is extensive decay in a tooth or when a tooth has suffered trauma. In both of these cases, if the tooth is severely damaged, there may not be sufficient healthy tooth structure remaining to support any kind of restoration such as a crown or a filling. This means that the tooth will be unable to be saved and extraction is necessary.
In addition to extracting teeth due to damage, sometimes teeth may have to be extracted where the teeth are crowded and extraction is required for orthodontic purposes or in preparation for top or bottom dentures, or both.
At your dental appointment for a tooth extraction, because this is an irreversible dental procedure and will likely require additional dental treatment to replace the tooth such as a dental implant, a bridge or dentures, our Calgary dentist, Dr. Dirk Thompson, will ensure that you are advised of all available alternative options to a tooth extraction, including a root canal, crown, or filling, and the likelihood of success of such treatments. Our Calgary dentist always encourages you to ask as many questions as you may need in order to ensure that you make an informed decision about this irreversible procedure and all of the benefits and risks of each type of treatment.
Although most patients tolerate an extraction procedure quite well, some patients prefer to have the tooth extraction conducted with the assistance of either oral or IV sedation. For more information about both oral sedation and IV sedation at our Calgary dentist office, please refer to the sedation dentistry information page on our website.
If you have any questions about whether your tooth needs extraction or whether it is possible to save your tooth, we invite you to make an appointment with our Calgary dentist office. Call us today at 403.283.4252. We're here to help.
Wisdom Teeth Extraction by Our Calgary Dentist
The third molars at the back of the mouth are known as your wisdom teeth. These teeth generally emerge between the ages of 17 and 25. If your wisdom teeth emerge with no difficulties and line up naturally with your adjacent teeth, then there is generally no reason to extract these teeth. If, however, there is not enough room for your wisdom teeth to erupt normally, then these teeth are said to be either “impacted” or "partially impacted" and removal may be necessary, particularly if you are experiencing any of the following issues or symptoms:
- Pain in your jaw where the wisdom tooth is impacted or partially impacted
- Pain in your ear on the side of the wisdom tooth which is impacted or partially impacted
- Pain in the gums where the wisdom tooth is impacted or partially impacted
- Redness or swelling where the wisdom tooth is impacted or partially impacted
- Decay caused by wisdom tooth crowding and the inability to properly clean around the area of the wisdom tooth and its adjacent tooth
- Gum Disease or infection again caused by the inability to properly clean around the area of the partially or fully erupted wisdom tooth
If your wisdom have erupted normally and you are not experiencing any issues or symptoms related to your wisdom teeth, then your teeth likely do not require extraction. In fact, some people keep their wisdom teeth their entire lives without any issues. When cavities, infection, crowding, poor positioning, or gum inflammation become an issue, it may be recommended to have your wisdom teeth extracted. Sometimes wisdom teeth are advised to be removed for orthodontic reasons or in preparation for denture placement.
If you are wondering whether an extraction is necessary for any of your wisdom teeth, or if you are suffering from any pain, discomfort or swelling which may be a dental emergency, call our Calgary dentist, Dr. Thompson, in Kensington/Hillhurst-Sunnyside for a dental appointment.
Children's Dentistry - Our Calgary Dentist Loves Kids!
Your child's oral health is an important part of their overall health at all stages of their childhood. That is why at our general Calgary dentist office, we love to see children of all ages from babies, to toddler and teenagers. In order to foster an appreciation of your child's oral health, at our Calgary dentist office we are committed to doing whatever we can to make your and your child's visit to our office as easy, comfortable and fun (yes fun!) as possible. Whether it's your child's first visit to our Calgary dentist office or whether they are a returning patient, here are a few of the things we do to ensure your child's visit is as stress-free as possible:
- Our Calgary dentist always encourages parents to stay with their child for their entire dental visit.
- We offer complimentary "meet and greet" appointments where you and your child can meet our Calgary dentist, Dr. Dirk Thompson, and our dental team, so your child can become familiar and comfortable with our dental office and team prior to the actual treatment day.
- Our Calgary dentist and dedicated dental hygienists will take the time to explain any procedures to both you and your child (as may be age appropriate, of course).
- Our Calgary dental team will take the time to educate your child about the importance of caring for their oral health. We also provide the cutest toothbrushing charts for your younger children to take home with them.
- As with our adult patients, our dental team focuses on all aspects of preventative dentistry for your children, including dental sealants where appropriate and regular check-ups with our Calgary dentist and dental hygiene visits.
- Bumps and falls happen, especially with children. If your child needs an emergency Calgary dentist, we always strive to accomodate your child's dental emergency as quickly as possible on the day of the accident. Our Calgary dentist also has availability for Calgary emergency dentist appointments after our regular business hours. Please call our office at 403.283.4252 or Dr. Dirk Thompson directly at 403.818.9099 for more information.
- Best of all, we have an awesome toy box for your child to choose a special treat from at the end of each Calgary dentist visit!
Whatever the age of your child, part our commitment to serving your family's oral health care needs is to provide a positive experience for your child at our Calgary dentist office at each and every dental visit. If you would like to make a dental appointment for your child with our Calgary dentist, please call our office at 403.283.4252. It would be our privilege to be your partner in your child's dental health for a lifetime!
When Should I Take My Child For Their First Calgary Dentist Appointment?
Many patients wonder when they should bring their children in for their first dental visit with their Calgary dentist. Some parents and caregivers are under the erroneous belief that, because baby teeth fall out, it is not necessary for their child to see a Calgary dentist until their permanent teeth start to erupt. In fact, this could not be further from the truth. Our Calgary dentist follows the recommendation of the Canadian Dental Association which advises that your child should be seen by a dentist within six months of the eruption of their first tooth or by one year of age, whichever is earlier. By ensuring that your child sees a Calgary dentist at an early age, your dentist can detect and address any potential issues that are commonly seen in children, including:
- orthodontic problems such as teeth crowding or improper or incomplete eruption of teeth
- excessive thumb sucking
- infections, including gum issues
- early caries (cavities)
- fluorosis (white spots on teeth due to overexposure to fluoride in the first eight years of life, usually from swallowing toothpaste with fluoride)
There is no doubt that the health of your child’s baby teeth is as important as the health of their adult teeth. Regular visits to your child’s Calgary dentist can prevent smaller issues from developing into larger issues that require more intervention. This can be very important as it relates to some children’s willingness to attend the dentist office as, sometimes, extensive dental work can lead to anxiety which can be difficult to overcome in future dentist visits. Untreated dental issues in children, particularly extensive dental issues, can also lead to missed social activities, sporting activities and school due to your child's pain and discomfort.
If it's time for your child's first or next dental visit, our Calgary dentist is here for you and your family! Our office is open Monday to Friday, with early morning, evening and Saturday appointments available. Call us today at 403.283.4252. Let's make your child's smile last a lifetime!
Root Canal Therapy by our General Calgary Dentist
Often, root canals are associated with pain. The reality is, however, that such pain is generally not from the root canal procedure itself but from the condition of the affected tooth. Typically, root canals relieve the pain you are experiencing as a result of a serious infection in your tooth or significant trauma causing damage to its internal structure.
A root canal, also known as endodontic treatment, is a dental procedure that may be able to save your tooth in certain circumstances, which is always the preferred option over the extraction of your tooth. Endodontic treatment is a safe and effective treatment for a tooth that has become severely inflammed, infected or damaged.
How is a Root Canal Accomplished?
Under a local anaesthetic, the necrotic or affected inner components of your tooth are carefully and thoroughly removed in order to salvage the remaining root and tooth structure. The canal is then cleaned, a disinfectant is applied and the canal is filled with a material called gutta percha. Root canal treated teeth are generally fortified at an additional visit with a post and often completed with a crown, which makes your tooth both aesthetically beautiful and functional. Whether a filling or crown will be placed on the tooth by your Calgary dentist depends upon the amount of tooth structure remaining and other considerations including the patient's preference. After the final restoration, the root canalled tooth should function like any other tooth.
If you have any questions about root canal treatment by our Calgary dentist, including its safety and effectiveness, or, if you desire a second opinion about proposed treatment to your tooth, call our Calgary dental office in the Kensington/Hillhurst/Sunnyside areas in NW Calgary at 403.283.4252 today and our team would be happy to assist you in any way we can.
Preventative Dentistry At Our Calgary Dentist Office
Good oral hygiene is vital not only for a healthy and beautiful smile, but also for your overall health. According to the Canadian Dental Association, recent studies have shown that gum disease can not only affect your oral health, but may even contribute to the development of heart disease and other ailments.
At Advance Your Health Dental, we know we have an important role to play in your overall health.
To encourage you to make your oral healthcare a priority, we always strive to make your dental hygiene visit to our Calgary dentist office as convenient, comfortable and efficient as possible, so you can enjoy the benefits of a happy, healthy smile for a lifetime.
Our caring and gentle team of experienced dental hygienists are here to assist you in achieving and maintaining your optimal oral health by tailoring an oral hygiene program for you that is specifically designed for your particular needs, state of health and overall oral hygiene goals.
Don't underestimate the importance of a healthy smile and book your dental hygiene appointment today!
The Importance of Annual Dental Check-Ups by Our Calgary Dentist
A dental examination at our Calgary dentist office involves so much more than just checking for cavities. At your annual dental examination, our Calgary dentist will conduct a thorough examination of your oral health, both inside and outside your mouth, to both monitor your oral health and diagnosis any new areas of concern. In addition to checking for cavities (tooth decay) during your dental examination, Dr. Dirk Thompson, our Calgary dentist, will also be:
- checking for early signs of gum disease (gingivitis)
- assessing the progress of any pre-existing gum disease
- screening for oral cancer
- checking for signs of teeth grinding or clenching
- assessing any jaw or facial pain you may have, including TMJ (temporomandibular) jaw pain
- discussing any cosmetic dentistry issues you may have, including whitening your teeth, crowns, veneers and dental implants
- providing recommendations for any new or outstanding dental treatment
- recommending an at home oral healthcare routine
- making any necessary referrals to dental specialists
OUR JUDGMENT FREE ATMOSPHERE
If you have not had a dental examination in a while, Dr. Dirk Thompson, our Calgary dentist, and our entire dental team recongnize that you may feel hesitant or even embarassed to see a dentist. At Advance Your Health Dental, our goal is to always provide you with dental care that is judgment free in a relaxed and positive atmosphere that encourages you to have honest and open conversations about your dental health with our team.
By having annual dental examinations, our Calgary dentist can assess the inter-related components of your oral health and track your overall oral health over time which is an important aspect of ensuring a lifetime of optimal dental health.
Dental X-Rays At Our Calgary Dentist Office
In addition to completing a visual examination, our Calgary dentist may also recommend that dental x-rays be taken (where necessary), including bitewings, periapical x-rays and a panoramic x-ray. Our Calgary dentist may also use an intra-oral camera to take photos to help you plainly see and understand any dental issues that may be developing. By making use of the latest in dental technology, we can diagnosis dental issues before they become larger problems that require more extensive intervention and costs. Some of the dental issues that can be detected with the use of dental x-rays include the following:
- dental caries (cavities)
- cavities developing beneath existing fillings
- gum disease
- bone loss, from gum disease or other causes
- impacted wisdom teeth
- infection (dental abscess)
If you are new to our dental office and already have some x-rays, be sure to ask one of our friendly team members to request your dental x-rays from your previous dental office.
Dental Consultations and Second Opinions by Our Calgary Dentist
We understand that, sometimes, dental work can be daunting and a consultation appointment or a second opinion can help ease the uncertainty about what to do.
We are pleased to provide second opinion and consultation appointments in a pressure and stress-free environment where you are encouraged to ask questions, speak openly without judgment and leave feeling confident that you are in good hands with our Calgary dentist, Dr. Dirk Thompson. At Advance Your Health Dental, consultation appointments are offered for all types of general dental services, including the following:
- cosmetic dentistry
- sedation dentistry
- dental implants
- root canal treatment
- teeth extractions
- wisdom teeth extractions
- teeth whitening
- crowns, veneers and bridges
- full smile makeovers
- fillings and bonding
- dental cleanings and check-ups
- children's dentistry
It would be our pleasure to meet with you and find the solutions that suit both your current oral healthcare needs, your budget, your timeline, your aesthetic goals and your lifestyle. Let's make your smile last a lifetime!
Mouth and Sports Guards
Being active is an important element in maintaining your overall health. Some sporting activities, however, may put you or your child at increased risk of dental or facial trauma, which can be a serious oral health problem.
One of the most effective ways to prevent dental trauma while participating in sporting activities is to always wear a dental mouth or sportsguard.
Our custom-fitted sportsguards are easily fabricated in one short visit and are now available in your team colours! These appliances are specifically designed to help cushion the mouth, teeth & jaw, helping to prevent significant damage in the event of injury to the facial area.
SIX TIPS FROM OUR CALGARY DENTIST TO HELP YOUR MOUTHGUARD LAST.
Unfortunately, mouthguards don’t last forever and, even with the best care, must be replaced periodically. The frequency of replacement of your mouthguard depends upon a variety of factors, including how well the mouthguard is taken care of, how much you use it and the type of mouthguard that your Calgary dentist made for you. For teenagers and children, you can expect that their mouthguards will have to be replaced more frequently simply because their mouths and teeth are growing and changing.
To keep your mouthguard fitting and functioning properly for as long as possible, follow these six easy tips from our Calgary dentist:
- Clean your mouthguard with a toothbrush and toothpaste after every use and as soon as possible after removing it.
- After cleaning your mouthguard, make sure it is thoroughly dried before putting it back in its container to prevent the growth of (smelly) bacteria.
- Periodically clean your mouthguard with soap and warm water. Always ensure it is rinsed thoroughly after each cleaning.
- Every mouthguard our Calgary dentist provides to our patients comes with its own hard container. Ensure you always store your mouthguard in this container to prevent it from being chipped, damaged or warped.
- Never clean your mouthguard in hot water or leave your mouthguard in the sun. Doing so could cause your mouthguard to warp or deteriorate.
- Always bring your mouthguard to your dentist appointment with our Calgary dentist or hygienist. At your appointment, our Calgary dentist or hygienist can inspect it and, if necessary, make recommendations for a replacement guard. Our Calgary dentist can also clean your mouthguard for you in our ultrasonic cleaner.
Is Dental Work Painful?
The answer to this often-asked and much worried about question is, no, you should not experience any pain during your dental treatment by your Calgary dentist.
Most dental treatments are completed with a local anaesthetic or “freezing”, which should thoroughly numb the area of your mouth that is being treated. Although you may feel some mild discomfort from the initial poke of the needle that delivers the local anaesthetic (don’t panic – they’re really not that bad!) or from keeping your mouth open for an extended period of time, if you are feeling any pain during the actual procedure, you should alert your dentist so that additional local anaesthetic can be given.
After your dental procedure, depending upon the amount and type of local anaesthetic given, you can expect the “frozen” feeling in your mouth to wear off within a few hours. While you are still frozen, our Calgary dentist recommends that you don’t eat or chew gum, as you could accidentally bite your lip, cheek or tongue and not even be aware of it.
After your freezing wears off, depending upon the type of procedure done, your overall health and your general pain tolerance, you may experience some discomfort or pain for 0 to 5 days. For minor dental procedures such as fillings and other dental restorations such as crowns or veneers, most people feel no pain or discomfort at all. After your dental treatment, to help alleviate any pain or discomfort and decrease any risk of complications, always make sure you follow our Calgary dentist’s, Dr. Dirk Thompson’s, homecare instructions and take pain relievers as recommended by Dr. Dirk Thompson.
And as always, if you have any questions about what to expect during your dental surgery by our Calgary dentist, please ask away! We’re here for you and happy to answer all of your questions so that you are always completely comfortable and informed about your dental procedure.
ORAL CANCER: WHY YOUR ANNUAL DENTAL EXAMINATION WITH OUR CALGARY DENTIST IS SO IMPORTANT.
Oral cancer begins in the cells of your mouth and can appear anywhere in your oral cavity including your gums, cheeks, lips, tonsils and throat. Early detection of oral cancer allows for the best possible prognosis and, if caught early enough, can save your life.
At your annual check-up with our Calgary dentist, Dr. Dirk Thompson, you will be given an oral cancer screening. Because the early signs of oral cancer can often be detected by a visual inspection, this is one of the reasons it is so important to attend for your annual dental examination with our Calgary dentist. In addition, it is important for you to regularly inspect your own month for any possible signs of oral cancer. Signs and symptoms to watch for include the following:
- a white or red patch or a mix of white and red anywhere in your mouth
- any lesion, lump, sore or growth anywhere in your mouth
- any thickening of the inner lining of your cheek
- any recurrent bleeding in any part of your mouth, including your lips
- changes to your sensation of taste
- difficulty in or painful swallowing
- changes in your voice
- any numbness or swelling in your mouth or jaw
- unexplained weight loss
Of course, not all lesions, bumps and growths are oral cancer. However, if you notice any lesion, ulcer or sore that does not resolve within two weeks, or if you have any concerns whatsoever, you should make an appointment with our Calgary dentist for a dental examination so that the area of concern can be checked and oral cancer ruled out as a possibility.
KNOW YOUR RISK FACTORS FOR ORAL CANCER.
Although no one is exempt from the risk of developing cancer, including oral cancer, there are several factors our Calgary dentist wants you to be aware of that may increase your overall lifetime risk of getting oral cancer, including the following:
- tobacco use (including cigars, cigarettes and chewing tobacco)
- excessive alcohol consumption
- ultraviolet exposure from the sun
- a previous human papillomavirus (HPV) infection
- a diagnosis of certain other types of cancers
- a family history of neck and head cancers
- having a diet deficient in vitamins, minerals and proper nutrients
- your genetics
- your gender (statistically more men than women develop oral cancer)
- a previous diagnosis of leukoplakia, which is a thick, whitish patch of tissue inside your mouth.