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Oct 2017
27th
 

Minimally Invasive Dentistry 2017

As you may be aware, our ethos is based on minimally invasive dentistry. Preserving tooth and gum is key to a healthy mouth. Why remove what nature provided us with? In the past, tooth decay would lead to large amounts of tooth being cut away so that amalgam metal fillings could be packed into the cavity. When we say packed, this is exactly what we mean. Amalgam does not bond to tooth. Therefore the tooth has to be cut with an undercut- the base of the cavity being narrower than the top so that the filling cannot drop out. Of course, by doing this you have to remove healthy tooth. Crazy? We think so. Thankfully, dentistry has moved on and the term Minimally Invasive Dentistry or MI is becoming more popular. We have always believed in this philosophy and have ahead of the times in this regard. Finally, the profession is waking up to the fact that prevention is far better than 'cure'. A great example will now be discussed. Our patient presented with minor decay on the tooth surface of a molar tooth. The treatment is simple; remove the decay and restore the tooth. In the past, the top of the tooth would have been cut open and made deeper to accommodate a metal filling. This is pure madness. Modern techniques and adhesive dentistry mean that we can clean the decay using fluid abrasion ( a bit like jet washing) and then bond a flowable filling material to seal the area. This requires NO drilling, no needles and is completely pain free. Sounds too good to be true? No, it is the truth! Here are the before and after photos:

Decay on the top of the molar tooth. Sticky and a slight pit is present. Decay on the top of the molar tooth. Sticky and a slight pit is present.
Tooth restored after fluid abrasion and sealant Tooth restored after fluid abrasion and sealant

As you can see the area is hardly visible. Minimal tooth needed to be removed to clean the site and the sealant is super smooth and tough. In fact, this is more resistant to plaque and staining. Shouldn't all dentists be adopting MI dentistry? Well, yes of course. However, as with any profession, some are stuck in the dark ages, simply cannot be bothered to update thought processes or will not invest in the technology to progress. If you have been diagnosed with tooth decay, ask for MI dentistry. Case treated by Dr Nissit Patel using Aquacare fluid abrasion. Photographs are the sole property of Progressive Dentistry and may not be used without strict permission.

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