1. What are the different filling materials?
For information about filling materials, please refer to "Filling" of "Oral treatment".

2. If I already have dental caries, can I stop the caries just from getting worse by performing daily oral hygiene care?
If you already have dental caries, it is best that you seek treatment from a dentist as soon as possible so that he can thoroughly examine your carious teeth. If the caries on your teeth are limited at an early stage (only the enamel is affected), the dentist only needs to apply topical fluoride to remineralize the decayed area. However, if your caries has already advance into the dentine, a filling is necessary because the decay has already spread deep into your tooth. Filling is the only method that can control the decay in this case, and daily oral hygiene care only cannot prevent the situation from getting worse.

3. Is it normal to feel discomfort after having a filling? Is there any way to improve the situation?
Generally speaking, it takes a few days to a week to get used to the new filling. Besides, during the filling procedure, it is necessary to remove the decayed portion of your tooth before a filling can be inserted. Therefore, it is possible that your tooth is more sensitive to external stimulation after a filling is placed. These discomforts should diminish as time goes by. If the situation doesn't improve, or even worsens, then you should see the dentist for a detailed investigation.

4. Is it necessary to crown my tooth after pulp treatment?
If your tooth is clinically too fragile after a pulp treatment, you will need to have a crown made for extra protection of the tooth.

5. I have already had a crown made after my pulp treatment, but I am still experiencing tooth sensitivity when drinking cold water. Is there a problem?
Tooth sensitivity after a pulp treatment (endodontic treatment) can be caused by:

  1. Problems with the adjacent teeth or periodontal tissues. Problems such as exposed dentine (or teeth sensitivity) or dental caries can cause tooth sensitivity when drinking hot or cold beverages.
  2. Pulp treatment may be unsuccessful and further treatments may be needed. If you are experiencing this condition, you should see a dentist as soon as possible for a detailed investigation for the cause, and seek further treatments for improvement.
You may refer to the link below for the list of "Specialists in Endodontics" in Hong Kong:
http://www.dchk.org.hk/en/list/dentist.htm

6. Where can I receive scaling treatment?
If you need to have a scaling, you may either go to a private dental clinic or a dental clinic that is operated by social services organizations. You may first inquire and compare their charges before deciding to receive treatment.
The list of all registered dentists in Hong Kong is:
http://www.dchk.org.hk/en/list/list.htm

7. Can scaling remove stains caused by cigarette smoking?
Cigarette stain is caused by external factors and can be remove by scaling.
The causes of tooth stain are:

  1. Heavy smoking or the frequent intake of dark-coloured beverages such as tea or coffee will cause accumulation of colour pigment on your teeth, which leads to black or brownish stains.
  2. If your teeth are not thoroughly brushed, dental plaque which absorbs food colouring will be accumulate and form stains.
To avoid the staining of teeth, we suggest that you should:
i. Quit smoking immediately
ii. Reduce intake of dark-coloured beverages such as tea or coffee.
iii. Brush thoroughly every morning and evening before bed and floss your teeth every night to eliminate dental plaque.
iv. Regular dental check-up and scaling.

8. The wound is swollen and painful after an extraction, when will it heal?
For information about extraction, please refer to "Extraction" of "Oral treatment"

9. Is it normal to have a hole at the original spot after an extraction? Would the hole close by itself?
This situation is normal. The surrounding dental alveolar bone and tissues will heal after a period following the extraction. The hole will slowly disappear thereafter.

10. Is it necessary for me to have a crown over my tooth if the enamel has been ground away? How long can I use the crown for? Are there any side effects?
If enamel has been ground away and not treated, your tooth may experience sensitivity or even dental caries. You should visit a dentist so that he can repair the tooth or make a crown for you according to your need. Crown can be made with many different materials such as porcelain, porcelain fused to gold, gold alloy, stainless steel, etc. Different material has different durability so it depends on your individual situation to decide which material is most suitable for you. Under normal circumstances, artificial crowns are rather durable and seldom have side effects. However, if you do not have a good oral hygiene habit, there are chances for your tooth to suffer from dental caries again.
For more information, please refer to "Crown" of "Oral treatment".

11. Is it really necessary to have a crown made after having pulp treatment on a tooth?
Please refer to the FAQ on "Pulp treatment".

12. What are the differences between denture and crown?
Denture and crown are two different treatment methods. If the tooth has not been removed, your dentist may consider placing a crown on top of the tooth. If the tooth has already been lost, a denture has to be made to replace the missing tooth.

13. Is the implant procedure a surgery? Do I need to stay in the hospital? Would my face be swollen after the implant procedure? What are the prices?
If you think that you have dental problems, you should consult a dentist immediately to have a detailed oral check-up to find out the sources of problem and to receive proper treatment. The need for having an implant can only be confirmed after detailed clinical examination and diagnosis. Implant procedure involve surgery, and there are three parts in the procedure: (1) detailed check-up (2) surgical operation (3) crown or denture insertion.
It depends on the individual's health condition to see whether there are needs to stay in the hospital; but hospitalization is usually not necessary. It also depends on the side effects of the surgery to determine whether your face will be swollen after the surgery. Commonly, the face is slightly swollen after the surgery. Besides, health problems such as diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and so on will also, to a certain degree, affect healing after the surgery. Moreover, the angle of insertion of the implant has to be very precise; otherwise it might permanently damage some important oral structures such as nerve fibres. Therefore, it is very important to have a detailed check-up before the implant surgery.
The cost of the implant varies from a few tens of thousand to a few hundreds of thousand dollars depending on the individual's situation. You can consult your dentist directly. Below is a list of all registered dentists in Hong Kong.
http://www.dchk.org.hk/en/list/list.htm
Should you wish to learn more about implant, you can refer to the sections "Dental Implant" and "Denture" of this website.

14. What are the differences between Implant and Denture?
An implant is a kind of fixed prosthesis. It is done by implanting a biocompatible material such as titanium alloy inside the dental alveolar bone to replace the root of the tooth. After the implant, false teeth such as crown, bridge, or removable denture can be mounted on top of the implant.
For more information, please refer to the sections "Dental Implant", "Crown", "Denture" and "Bridge" of this web site.

15. What is the suitable age for receiving orthodontic treatment? How long does it take to complete the treatment?
Orthodontic treatment is suitable for all ages. You can first consult your dentist, and he will give you advice on your situation and refer you to an orthodontist accordingly. The entire treatment process takes about one to three years. The actual length of time depends on the complexity of your treatment.
Currently, all local registered dentists had been trained professionally. Please refer to this link for a complete list of registered dentists:
http://www.dchk.org.hk/en/list/list.htm

16. Can "Projected upper front teeth" be corrected?
"Projected upper front teeth" is a kind of malocclusion and it can be corrected by orthodontic treatment.
Orthodontic treatment is a relatively complex oral treatment. It is best to first consult an orthodontist before deciding to receive treatment. Cost of the treatment depends on the condition of your teeth and the complexity of treatment.
Please refer to the link below for a list of "specialist in orthodontics" registered with the Dental Council of Hong Kong:
http://www.dchk.org.hk/en/list/dentist.htm

17. What are the prices for an orthodontic treatment like?
Every orthodontist charges differently according to the complexity of your treatment. They cost about a few tens of thousand dollars. You may first inquire different orthodontists to compare the prices.
Please refer to the link below for a list of "specialist in orthodontics" registered with the Dental Council of Hong Kong:
http://www.dchk.org.hk/en/list/dentist.htm

Last revision date: 18 January 2013