07 5465 7995
3 Gehrke Rd, Plainland QLD 4341, Australia

In this section we aim to present you with some detailed information on a variety of important dental topics. Our dentists have tried to cover a range of topics and have picked areas that we feel would be benefitial to you. If there is something you would be interested in knowing more about please contact don't hesitate to contact us.


The Importance of Oral Hygiene During Orthodontic Treatment

Braces and other correctional devices do wonders for your dental health - and your smile - but they can sometimes make keeping your mouth clean and fresh difficult.

Poor brushing and flossing habits can leave food stuck in your teeth and braces over long periods. This can cause bad breath and a buildup of plaque which, in turn, leads to bigger dental problems down the line such as cavities, or swollen, tender gums. On removal of the braces, this can also leave  staining and white marks on the teeth (decalcification, or a breakdown of tooth enamel).


However, keeping a strict cleaning regime throughout your treatment will ultimately give you much better results, and help you avoid the possibility of further dental treatment once your braces are off.  Adhere to the following tips and your teeth will shine brighter than ever.


Brushing tips

How long should you be brushing for?

With or without braces, the standard recommendation is to brush for at least 2 full minutes. Extra care needs to  be taken in order to properly clean braces if there is food in them, bringing brushing time up to around 4 or 5 minutes.


How often should you brush?

If you have braces or are currently undergoing other orthodontic treatment, brushing your teeth at least twice a day is strongly recommended - at least once in the morning after breakfast and after dinner before bed. It’s also a good idea to clean your teeth after lunch in order to remove food caught between your braces.


Brushing alternatives

When out and about, try to carry a travelling toothbrush or interdental brush with you if possible. If you cannot clean your teeth, it is highly advised that you at least rinse your mouth to dislodge as much food as possible.


Remember your gums!

Pay special attention to your gums when brushing as this area is often neglected. If food collects along the gum line and is left there, the bacteria that develops can cause the gums to become tender and swollen, and may even bleed. The gums can be difficult to get to with braces on, so make sure you take the time to clean them properly.


Flossing tips

Flossing can get neglected when people have braces as it is a slightly more involved process. The following tips will help you keep your oral health in top shape:


Use the right floss

Make sure you floss with either waxed floss, dental tape, a special braces cleaning brush or floss. Unwaxed floss is likely to shred on the braces and get caught. Your dentist can suggest products that would best suit your needs.

Use plenty

Make sure the piece of floss you use is enough to get a proper grip and won't slip out - 40cm should be plenty.


Master your technique

The correct way to floss with braces is to thread the floss under the main wire first to clean between the wires and teeth, and then floss between the teeth as normal. Repeat this for each tooth to get the best results.

While undergoing any type of orthodontic treatment, you should continue with regular dental checkups - one appointment at least once every 6 months is strongly recommended to avoid any future problems and promote oral health.

Should you have any further questions about orthodontics, or are interested in the possibility of orthodontic treatment, contact us at Fernvale Dental. We are happy to announce that we now offer orthodontic treatments. Call us today to book your orthodontic consultation!


Halitosis - Chronic Bad Breath

Bad breath can have a big impact on your life.  Among other things, it can make conversation unpleasant, make food taste differently, and even result in difficulties with dating.

Halitosis is the medical term for chronic bad breath. Everyday bad breath (morning breath, for example) disappears with regular brushing and flossing. Lingering oral odour, however, can be more serious and potentially difficult to self-diagnose, as you may become familiar with your bad breath and not notice the smell. If you cannot fix your bad breath with everyday brushing and flossing, you may be in the 2.5% of the population that have halitosis. It is important to note that your bad breath may stem from a bigger dental or oral problem.  If you suspect you may have additional issues, contact your dentist.

Symptoms of Halitosis

·      Constant bad breath

·      Build-up of plaque around teeth

·      Post-nasal drip, or mucous

·      Thick saliva and a constant need to clear throat

·      Dry mouth

·      Constant sour, bitter metallic taste

·      Burning tongue

Causes of Halitosis

One of the main causes of halitosis is poor dental hygiene. Good hygiene habits and regular dental check-ups are critical for maintaining oral health and avoiding bad breath.

Failing to properly clean your teeth, dentures or braces is another cause of halitosis. You should brush your teeth for at least 3 minutes, and floss every day. Make sure to brush all your teeth on different angles, and your gums as a lot of bacteria is stored there.

Gum disease and cavities are also other factors leading to halitosis. Bacteria is formed when food gets embedded within the teeth, which can lead to infection and potential chronic bad breath problems. Dentures or braces that are not cleaned regularly or that don't fit properly can also harbour odour-causing bacteria and food particles.

How Diet Affects Your Breath

Diet can also play a prominent role in halitosis. Coffee, garlic, onions, strong curry, fish, acidic beverages and alcohol all promote bad breath and can also cause stomach issues like acid reflux (another cause of bad breath) and belching.

Limiting these foods can prevent your bad breath from getting worse. Foods such as apples, spinach, probiotic yoghurt and plenty of water have been known to lessen the effects of halitosis.


Tobacco products stain your teeth and cause a lingering odour that can make your breath undesirable. Smoking also aggravates gums and hastens tooth decay, which can lead to long-term halitosis.

It is important to note that your bad breath may stem from a bigger dental or oral problem. If you are suffering from halitosis, or would like to find out more, contact us at Plainland Dental today - we can help you to identify possible causes and provide expert advice.



Saliva, The Silent Defender!

Keeping hydrated on a hot summer’s day can be a challenge with temperatures rising further and further. However, it is very important to keep your water intake levels high to also keep saliva levels in the mouth high.

Saliva plays a vital role in keeping our mouths healthy and is produced by 3 different glands within your mouth. Daily production of saliva ranges from 0.5 – 1.0 litres and is composed of ~99% water with the other 1% being solids, mostly proteins and electrolytes. Saliva helps keep our mouths in a healthy state through the following functions:

• Protecting teeth from decay and erosion by countering acids in the foods we eat

• Digesting food via enzymes contained within

• Cleansing and lubrication

• Coating our gums and soft tissues, thus giving protection against bugs and microbes

• Diluting and clearing sugars and carbohydrates introduced into the mouth

Low saliva flow has not only been linked to higher rates of dental decay, but also dental erosion, which if left untreated can become quite a serious issue. If you are concerned about dental decay or erosion, or are after more information, please give our friendly staff at Plainland Dental a call on (07) 5465 7995

Dr. Alistair Tang


Tooth Whitening – Is it for me?

With the ever whitening smiles of today’s celebrities, tooth whitening is more popular than ever.

Tooth whitening can be very effective in improving the shade of your teeth but there are several considerations to make before taking the leap.

Teeth whitening works by using chemicals to break down stains that have formed on and within tooth structure. An inevitable side effect of this is that it can irritate the nerve, and so we ensure that the nerve of the tooth is sealed as much as possible. We strongly encourage a comprehensive exam before starting teeth whitening to ensure that the nerves of your teeth are well insulated and protected from any short or long term effects of the whitening product.

There are types of staining which whitening products will not do much at all. Thinning of enamel (the hard outer layer of your teeth) can lead to natural darkening of teeth as the more yellow dentine layer shows through. Certain variations in the formation of the enamel can also lead to certain stains, spots and bands on enamel. For these types of stains, tooth whitening products are not very effective; however we do have other options at the dentist for these.

Whitening chemicals are designed to break down stains above all else. Common stains include tea, coffee and wine. For these, whitening products are very effective. Together with meticulous oral hygiene to maintain any improvements from treatment, whitening can be a great tool for keeping your smile fresh and free from food and drink stains.

If your interested in teeth whitening or want more information call the practice on 5465 7995.

Dr Sang Ho


Mouthguards - Should I wear one?

We all want our children to be healthy and active, but if they are over the age of 7 and play contact sports, without wearing a mouthguard they could be placing their health at risk.

Mouthguards are made of rubber and specially designed to protect the front teeth and lips from trauma. This can prevent the need for expensive dental work after injuries to fix broken teeth.

Mouthguards come in a range of colours, and custom made mouthguards are very comfortable and should be worn when playing footy, hockey, netball, basketball and even when skateboarding.

A mouthguard which is custom made by a dentist can also reduce or prevent the impact of injuries to the head and jaws, reducing the risk of broken jaws and brain damage.

All that is needed to make a mouthguard is a quick appointment at the dentist where an impression of the top teeth is taken. The mouthguard will generally be ready in 2 weeks.

In time just as children outgrow clothes they will outgrow their mouthguard as well, so bringing it to regular check-up appointments will help your dentist advise you of when a new one is needed. 

If you think you need to have a mouthguard made, give our staff a call on 5465 7995 to book your appointment today.

Dr Yastira Lalla



Hypomineralised teeth (Chalky teeth)

Hypomineralisation (sometimes called chalky teeth) is a developmental condition that affects teeth as they are forming during the last trimester of pregnancy and the first four years of life. Enamel on these teeth has marked, chalky looking areas with less mineral than unaffected enamel.
Irregularities in the enamel can happen either during or after enamel formation. More often than not it occurs after formation, through the breakdown of the enamel from bacteria and its acid waste – more commonly known as the process of tooth decay. This is preventable with good oral hygiene.

It can also occur naturally, resulting in hypomineralised teeth and this isn't as preventable. Causes of hypomineralisation include sickness resulting in fever, consuming certain antibiotics and trauma during infancy, while the teeth are still developing. The most affected areas are the front central incisors (middle teeth) and first molars (six year old molars) as these are developing around the time of birth when such complications are more likely.

The first major repercussion of hypomineralisation is that the mineral deficient enamel layer is not well formed and more prone to breaking down and experiencing tooth decay. The second disadvantage is the chalky appearance of the tooth which, unless the area is small, is very hard to mask without drilling and preparing the tooth.

Regular dental check-ups and maintenance are ideal for both finding and reviewing high risk, chalky areas on teeth. Once aware of weaker enamel in your own, or your children’s mouths you will be able to focus more on maintaining meticulous oral hygiene in these areas, helping to prevent tooth decay.

If you are concerned about your teeth contact us on 5465 7995 to make an appointment with your dentist.


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Is smoking really that bad?

Smoking.....we have all heard about the terrible effects it has on our lungs. However, smoking also has many negative effects in the mouth. It is also one of the leading causes of bad breath. Its harmful implications affect the teeth, gums and oral mucosa.

Smoking results in a higher risk of widespread tooth decay, therefore leading to toothache and further general discomfort. This decay will break down the structural integrity of the teeth. If left untreated, it is often difficult to fix and may require extraction to prevent spread of further infection. Smoking additionally leads to deep staining on the teeth. This staining is very difficult to remove. Most people then regularly aim to remove these stains via vigorous tooth brushing techniques with far coarser toothpastes. However, the consequence of this is long term generalised dental sensitivity to hot and cold stimuli.

Smoking has also been linked to periodontal gum disease. This disease is where the gums and jawbone recede from the teeth, and it may lead to the teeth becoming loose if advanced. It is a very undesirable condition, where there is no cure, and the condition can only be managed. Having loose teeth is very uncomfortable to chew with and does not have an aesthetic appearance. In severe cases, these teeth need to be extracted, resulting in greater difficulty in chewing.

Lastly, studies have shown that smoking may cause alterations in the oral mucosa. The alterations may vary quite markedly, and lead to the development of conditions from oral candidiasis to lichen planus. Studies have also shown that smoking leads to higher risks of mouth cancer. The most deadly of which is known as squamous cell carcinoma. If detected too late, it may be extremely unfavourable for the patient. It is highly recommended that these checks for oral cancer are undertaken periodically.

 Dr Matthew Kei


Early and late loss of baby (deciduous) teeth

Baby teeth are also referred to as the deciduous or primary teeth. Although deciduous teeth eventually exfoliate, they do play a very important role in development. Healthy deciduous teeth are important for:

Straighter smiles

  • Ideally deciduous teeth should be there until they are ready to come out naturally as a major role of theirs is to maintain space and guide the adult teeth into the correct position. Losing teeth early because of decay and toothache can result in crowding of adult teeth.

Good Oral hygiene 

  • Cavities in any tooth can create havoc. Cavities in deciduous teeth can be even more detrimental as deciduous teeth are naturally less resistant to decay compared to adult teeth.

Eating, diet and nutrition

  • Having healthy deciduous teeth allow good chewing habits, allowing children to eat uninhibited.

Predicting when a deciduous tooth will exfoliate is difficult; and when a baby tooth exfoliates too early or remains for too long it can be concerning. Below is a guide for when we can expect deciduous teeth to be replaced by adult teeth.

tooth exfoliation chart

The most important aspect to remember is that this is simply a guide to when teeth should be erupting or exfoliating as there is a large amount of variation for when a tooth will exfoliate in any one child. What is more important is the order in which teeth exfoliate, as incorrect order of deciduous teeth falling out can sometimes mean that an adult tooth is missing.

Things to remember

  • Teeth falling out of order is more of a concern than teeth that have naturally fallen out early or remained longer than anticipated.
  • Missing adult teeth is a genetic trait. 
  • Generally, early diagnosis of baby teeth will allow and wider choice of treatment options

The most worthwhile advice in regard to any dental issue, and especially with deciduous teeth is timely advice. For this reason, examinations and regular reviews of childrens’ teeth at the dentist can ensure future problems can be spotted and avoided whilst the kids can keep a smile before, during and after their visit to the dentist.


Dr Sang Ho


How important really are my gums?

Everyone knows that a house or building needs a strong foundation to support it; a well-built house can still have a weak foundation which could compromise the integrity of the entire structure. Your gums form the foundation for your teeth and keeping them healthy is just as important as having healthy teeth. Gingivitis and Periodontitis are the most common conditions which affect the gums and are often collectively referred to as ‘Gum disease’

Unlike Gingivitis, which is swelling and inflammation of the gums and can usually be reversed by maintaining good oral hygiene, Periodontitis is a destructive, irreversible disease of the gums and bone which hold the teeth in place. Periodontitis causes the bone which anchors the teeth to shrink away and can continue, painlessly, until almost all the bone is gone and the only treatment is to have the affected teeth removed.

Periodontitis can affect anyone although there are some risk factors commonly associated with developing periodontitis, such as smoking and having diabetes. Importantly, there is strong evidence to show that diabetics are more likely to develop periodontitis and that poorly controlled periodontitis can have a negative effect on diabetic management. Periodontitis has even been associated with heart disease and with preterm low birth weight children in females.

Periodontitis cannot be cured, but it can be treated by routinely removing the bacteria under the gums which cause it in a procedure referred to as root planning or debriding. Regular reviews are also essential to monitor the disease progression and prevent future tooth loss.
If you notice that you have bad breath that won’t go away, red or swollen gums, loose teeth, gums which bleed while brushing or receding gums or longer looking teeth you may benefit from having a check-up with your Local dentist which will include an assessment for Gum disease.

Dr Yastira Lalla


Flossing - Is it really worth the effort?

Brushing our teeth twice a day…..surely it is enough to keep the teeth clean right?

This is certainly a good question and is asked frequently.  Tooth brushing is very important.  However, it can never sufficiently clean off the plaque in between the majority of teeth.  

Consequently, the bugs hiding in these regions are able to ferment the sugary content in our diet to rot away the areas between the teeth.  These holes are often hidden from the eye and require x-rays to diagnose.  If picked up too late, the teeth may be irreversibly damaged.

Flossing is therefore an extremely important oral hygiene procedure, as it is able to clean the tight spaces in between the teeth.  It is often overlooked because it is difficult to master and takes too much time.  

At Plainland Dental, the dentists want to show you how to floss properly and efficiently.  No question is too silly to ask, and we want to be able to address any of your concerns.  Prevention is the key to a healthy oral environment.


Dr Matt Kei


Pregnancy and Dental Care

It is important that you tell your dentist you are pregnant as it can affect the type of care necessary for you. Routine check ups, scale and cleans and general fillings can be carried out at any stage of the pregnancy without any concerns. Major dental work such as extractions and root canals are assessed case by case and your dentist will talk through any concerns or questions you have regarding the proposed treatment.


Childrens Dental Care

To ensure a lifetime of healthy smiles, it's important to introduce your children to professional dental care from an early age, even as young as 2 or 3.  Regular checkups from this age will allow them to feel comfortable in the chair, and help establish a friendly relationship with the dentist and dental nurse.