Opening Hours: Mon to Fri - 9 AM to 5 PM, Wed - 9 AM to 6 PM, Sat By Appointment Call Us: +61 (03) 9318 7700

Dental implants – permanently improving your quality of life

Dental implants

Dental implants can change the lives of those with missing teeth. Implants give individuals the chance to have permanent dentures or bridges, which can drastically improve the quality of life. Biting and chewing is infinitely easier, allowing better nutrition. There is improved oral comfort, decreased incidences of gum problems, improved speech, and for many, increased confidence knowing that he or she can smile again without the embarrassment caused by missing teeth.

What is a dental implant?

Also known as tooth implants, dental implants are tiny titanium screws that act as an artificial tooth root. The implant is inserted into the bone of the jaw through the mouth, and acts as an anchor or a support to a denture, crown or bridge.

With individual crowns, only one implant is required. There are various techniques used with implants, depending on requirements. For example, there may be just two missing teeth, several missing teeth or in some instances all the teeth are missing – and a complete set of artificial teeth or dentures are required.

The implant is only one part of the procedure when fitting artificial teeth. After placing the implant in the mouth, the bone has to heal through a process known as “osseointegration”. Osseointegration is when the bone fuses around the implant.

After the bone has healed, an abutment is placed on the implant. This is like a little connector between the dental implants and either the artificial tooth or the bridge. Sometimes, dental implants can be fitted with little press-stud-like attachments to hold a denture in place. These press studs minimise movement of the denture.

For more information on the treatment stages required for dental implants, refer to our previous blog, “Your dental implants: a step-by-step guide”.

The benefits of dental implants

Dental implants have many benefits. Here are the most significant ones.

  • They can help prevent receding gums.
  • Facial bone-loss and the resultant facial changes are prevented. When there are teeth missing, the bone in the jaws can start to degenerate. Over time, the results can be quite drastic, hollowing out the face and dramatically changing the appearance of the face and jaw. Dental implants keep the bone tissue healthy.
  • Implants are placed securely in the jaw, providing a permanent solution for artificial teeth.
  • In most cases, implants are surrounded by gum tissue, similar to natural teeth.
  • Generally speaking, dentures are much more comfortable than traditional dentures.
  • Dental implants can be cleaned just like normal teeth, using a toothbrush, toothpaste and dental floss.
  • They provide solid support for dentures, making biting and chewing easier.

Can anyone have dental implants?

Most people are candidates for implant dentistry; however, before the procedure commences, patients must have an x-ray or even a CT scan to ensure there is sufficient bone in the jaw. Certain health conditions can prevent an individual from having implants, particularly if the condition is likely to adversely affect the Osseointegration process. However, provided the individual in in good health, dental implants are generally a great way to permanently address the issue of missing teeth.

Is it painful?

No. The dental implant procedure is relatively painless and each step is very quick. Usually, it is performed in the dentist’s or periodontist’s (gum specialist’s) chair. The only minor discomfort may be due to the stitches in the days after the implants are placed. Occasionally, a general anaesthetic is required in which case the procedure is undertaken by an oral surgeon in hospital.

Read More

Your New Dental Crown: A Step-by-Step Guide

Dental crowns

Dental crowns, also known as tooth crowns or dental caps, are small, tooth-shaped caps that are fitted over a natural tooth to restore strength, shape or size, or to improve the appearance of the tooth. They cover the entire visible surface of the tooth above the gum line.

If your dentist has recommended a dental crown, there are usually two appointments required before you receive the finished result. The first step involves examining your tooth roots and the surrounding bone tissue. An examination is important to check that the tooth is ready for preparation for the crown. The second step involves fitting your new crown.

Step one: examination and preparation

Your dentist will first check that there is no infection or injury to the tooth pulp, or extensive decay in the tooth to be crowned. If there are any issues these will need to be fixed before proceeding with the preparation of the crown.

If the tooth is free of decay or infection, your dentist will anaesthetise your tooth and the surrounding gum tissue before getting started. The tooth requiring the dental crown will then be filed down along the top surface and sides in order to make room for the crown. The amount of tooth removed will depend on the type and size of the crown to be used. For example, some crowns are thinner and require less tooth structure removal, while a thicker layered porcelain crown will require more of the natural tooth to be removed.

Sometimes, if the tooth requires a cap because some of the tooth is missing, the dentist may need to “build up” the tooth area with a filling material in order to support the crown adequately.

Once your dentist is happy with the new shape of your tooth, she or he will make an impression of the tooth with a putty or paste. Impressions of the teeth below and above the tooth to be capped will also be made in order to ensure that the crown will not interfere with your bite.

Next, the impression is sent to a dental technician at a dental lab where the crown will be manufactured. If your dentist has ordered a porcelain crown for you, a shade will be selected at this time that closely colour matches your natural teeth. At this appointment, your dentist will also craft a temporary crown made of acrylic for you to wear while waiting for your new dental crown. Usually, you will have to wait 2 to 3 weeks for the new crown to be ready.

While waiting for your new crown, it’s essential that you eat and chew carefully, as the temporary crown will not be as sturdy as the new one. Avoid excessively chewy or sticky foods (like toffee) and try to avoid biting with that side of the mouth. Also be mindful of your temporary crown when flossing your teeth.

Step two: fitting your new dental crown

On your second visit to the dental clinic, your dentist will remove your temporary crown and check the colour and fit of your new crown. If you and your dentist are happy with the fit, he or she will prepare to fit the new crown. You will be given local anaesthetic, and then your new crown will be permanently cemented or adhered to your tooth.

Afterwards, your new crown should not be noticeable in your mouth. You may be slightly conscious of your tooth crown until you get used the feel of it in your mouth. If, for any reason, your bite does not feel comfortable, consult your dentist so that she or he may adjust it.

Dental crowns can rectify many tooth problems and when done with precision and care can dramatically improve your smile. At Finer Smiles Laser Dentistry we provide exactly the right precision and care to create a unique solution for every patient. Ask our team about dental crowns today!

Read More

The Child Dental Benefits Schedule – are your kids eligible?

Child Dental BenifitsGovernment initiative, formerly called Grow Up Smiling, replaced the Medicare Teen Dental Plan and basically meant that dental care for kids and teens could be bulk billed under the new scheme. The CDBS has been in operation now for almost a year but how many people actually understand how it works and whether their family is eligible? In this post we take a look at the scheme and try the shed some light on what it means for families with kids.

Firstly, the Child Dental Benefits Schedule was estimated to benefit some 3.4 million children Australia-wide. Eligible families are entitled to $1000 worth of selected general dental treatment per child over two calendar years. That’s the good news. However, there are some tax implications that families should be aware of and the CBDS is also means tested.

The dental services covered by the CDBS include examinations, x-rays, cleaning, fissure sealing, fillings, root canals and extractions. The scheme does not cover orthodontic or cosmetic dental work, nor will it cover any services provided in a hospital.

Child Dental BenifitsThe Federal Government has confirmed that children aged between 2 and 17 years of age from families who receive Family Tax Benefit Part A (FTB-A) or certain other government payments, will be entitled to the benefit. The Government has also advised families to keep their details current with agencies such as Medicare, Centrelink and the Department of Veterans’ affairs.

When visiting your dentist, make sure you have your Medicare card with you. The dentist will need to see your Individual Reference Number (IRN), which is the number set against the patient’s name on the card. Patient eligibility is determined each calendar year and is valid for that calendar year only. Confirmations of eligibility were sent out earlier in the year and if you have not yet received yours you may want to follow up with the relevant authority.

If you’d like to find out more about eligibility at Finer Smiles Laser Dentistry, we’re always happy to help.Call (03) 9318 7700 now to find out more

Read More

Welcome to the new blog from Finer Smiles Laser Dentistry!

Dr. Danny Ivkovic WrFinally it’s here – the new blog from Finer Smiles Laser Dentistry!

Designed to provide professional tips and advice on dental care from Melbourne’s leading laser dentist, Dr Danny Ivkovic, our new blog will be a resource for anyone considering laser dental treatment. As the only dentist in Maribyrnong to offer laser dentistry in all forms of dental treatments, Dr Danny is known throughout Melbourne for his top class family and cosmetic dentistry. Indeed patients travel from all over the city to be treated at his dental practice in Essendon and Highpoint Shopping Centre.

We’ll be posting articles on laser dentistry and how the pain-free nature of this technology can reduce stress and anxiety amongst nervous patients enormously. There’s no longer any need to be scared of needles and drills! Dr Danny will also be posting about how laser dentistry can assist with cosmetic dentistry and creating the most beautiful of pearly white smiles!

There’ll also be plenty of news updates about what’s happening in the practice and lots of and valuable information about the latest developments in the industry. Looking forward to seeing you back here soon!

The Team from Finer Smiles Laser Dentistry.

Read More

8 Reasons Why You Should See a Laser Dentist in Melbourne

Laser DentistIt’s fantastic to see that in Melbourne, laser dentistry is certainly catching on. Being one of the first laser dentists in Melbourne , it’s been 10 years since I first introduced the laser to our Highpoint dental clinic and it’s been wonderful to see our patients enjoy the treatment so much – and watch its popularity steadily grow. Now, for those that are new to the subject, I can genuinely say that laser dentistry is simply a better, faster, pain-free way of getting your dental work done!


Here are 8 reasons why you should try laser dentistry:

1. A more pleasant, more comfortable dental experience

Sadly, many people put up with the pain of conventional dentistry – or worse, forego essential dental appointments altogether for fear of pain or blood. With modern laser dentistry techniques, you’ll be amazed at how there will be fewer injections, less drilling – and with commonly performed gum procedures – less bleeding. Visiting the laser dentist is a pleasant, comfortable experience.

Heat, pressure, and vibration are the three main causes of dental pain that are associated with the traditional dental drill. At Finer Smiles Laser Dentistry in Melbourne , we use the Biolase Water Laser, which allows us to treat teeth and gums with incredible precision, without generating any painful heat, pressure or vibration, which means the need for anaesthetics is substantially lessened. Put simply, there is less need for needles – and fewer numb lips!

2. Less bleeding and fewer stitches

With common procedures such as gum treatments, laser dentistry is ideal as there will be less bleeding. With lasers, the ‘coagulating capability’ is increased, so there is a lot less blood. High energy light beams from the laser assist in the clotting of the blood vessels in a way that is simply not possible with conventional dentistry practices. Because of this, requirement for stitches is considerably reduced.

3. Less swelling and post procedure pain

As the laser causes less interference with your tissues, there is less bleeding, bruising and swelling, and consequently less pain when you leave either of our Melbourne-based clinics. So, you can make the most of your day without hiding a swollen face or feeling that you can’t show your face in public.

4. Less need for anaesthesia

You’ll be delighted to know that, for some procedures, anaesthesia won’t be necessary at all, so there will be no numb face, no dizzy head, and best of all – more money in your pocket!

5. Less chance of infection

One of the brilliant benefits of laser is that the high energy beam sterilises the area we are working on and there’s far less chance of infection – another advantage over traditional dentistry and more peace of mind for the nervous patients out there.

6. Fewer Visits to the Dentist

Because laser dentistry is less invasive, time is saved, enabling you to have several procedures in a single session, rather than having to come back for repeat visits – it saves you time and money!

7. Versatility

If you’re looking for a dentist in Melbourne, laser dentists are certainly a recommendable choice as lasers are used so effectively and economically for a vast array of dental procedures. As well as gum treatments, laser is brilliant for hard tissue procedures such as cavity preparation, decay removal, surgical procedures involving bone, cosmetic dentistry and even root canal work.

8. Precision and safety

The precision of the laser enables us to remove only the damaged parts of the tooth, leaving the rest intact. Traditional dentistry relies on drilling, which often involves removing large amounts of the tooth to complete the procedure, all the while potentially causing cracks and pain. Laser precision means e can maximise the effectiveness of the treatment while minimising disturbance to your teeth. It’s more accurate and safer all round for the health of your teeth.So there you have it – perfect teeth, pain-free.

So if you’re looking for a laser dentist in Melbourne, give us a call today ! We’re always happy to help.

Finer Smiles Laser Dentistry Highpoint: (03) 9318 7700

Finer Smiles Laser Dentistry Essendon: (03) 9379 0007

Read More