Are you destroying your teeth at night?

Are you destroying your teeth at night?

Are you

Why is decay so bad?

Once the decay process has started it continues until it is removed. The further the decay continues the larger the cavity in the tooth. The larger the cavity in the tooth the weaker the tooth is long-term even with a restoration. If the decay continues through the enamel and the dentine and reaches the pulp, the nerve will be affected and start to die off. This results in pain for the patient and root canal treatment or extraction being the only two options available if this occurs.

What Causes decay?

Decay (clinically referred to by dentists as caries) is the process of destruction of enamel and dentine of the tooth by acid produced by bacteria in the mouth fuelled by sucrose(sugar).
Bacteria adhere to the teeth in a layer form known as plaque.
Therefore the main two things needed for the decay process to occur are plaque (bacteria biofilm) and sucrose (sugar)

To prevent decay

To prevent decay we have to minimise sugar intake and frequency and remove thoroughly plaque containing bacteria.

Review your diet. Reduce frequency of snacking and intake of any sugary drinks. Especially sports drinks/smoothies/energy drinks and sugar in tea and coffee.

Plaque removal: Brush well 2 times per day and floss daily. Flossibg cleans the 30% of tooth surface not accessed by the brush.

Get the teeth cleaned by your dentist every 6 months to remove the plaque that you can’t access or that has hardened and is difficult to clean off.

Use a fluoride toothpaste and mouthwash. Fluoride if the one ingredient that can reverse early decay.

If you have decay

It is important to see you dentist for regular check ups to catch any decay in it’s earliest form when the cavity is at it’s smallest to minimise tooth destruction and to keep filling sizes to a minimum.

New Year, New Teeth

It is 2018, begin the year with a positive, proactive attitude.

Do you like your teeth? Do you feel you look after them as well as you should?

It is very easy to put off attending the dentist until there is a problem. It’s a new year, do not wait until that tooth breaks or you wake up with a throbbing pain. Call Blackrock Clinic Dentistry 01 206 4218 and attend for your check up now. We advise a check-up every 6 months to ensure decay or gum disease is caught early.

If you are PRSI qualified, you will benefit from a free basic examination and a contribution towards a Scale and Polish now. Call with your pps number now.

Do you floss?

Make it your new year’s resolution to floss daily

Tip: Leave your floss beside you toothbrush, if you stare at the floss enough, you may just start using it. Your tooth brush does not effectively clean in between your teeth.  Our favourite floss is Oral B satin floss (it comes in a blue box).

Would you like to have whiter teeth?

On a regular basis, patients ask us about veneers, crowns, etc to improve the aesthetics of their teeth. Sometimes by completing a simple session of bleaching your teeth can greatly improve the appearance and many patients will be delighted with this non-invasive procedure. Please see our blog on bleaching below.

Are you drinking Sports drinks, fruit juices, smoothies?

Most people try to begin the year with increasing the amount they exercise and fruit intake. It is important to know that sport drinks and fruit juices and fruit by itself are acidic. This means they can erode your teeth.

Tip: 1) Drink sports drinks, fruit juices through a straw.

2) Never brush directly after eating fruit. The acid can make the enamel softer leading to erosion of your teeth. Rinse with water or drink milk or eat cheese to neutralise the acid.


When should a child visit the dentist?


On a weekly basis, patients at Blackrock Clinic Dentistry ask us when they should bring their child to the dentist.

  • The first baby teeth to erupt are usually the lower front 2 teeth at age 6-10 months. Please see the chart below re the eruption pattern.

We advise as soon as the baby teeth begin to erupt then attend the dentist for a dental check-up. Why?

  • It is very important to get your child familiar with the dentist at an early age. It is vital that they like attending the dentist.
  • Prevention is better than cure so we recommend attending every 6 months.
  • Catch decay early to avoid extractions at an early age.
  • Sometimes orthodontic intervention is required at any early age so regular routine dental examinations are important.
  • Diet  advice- your dentist will advise you on the best and worst foods or drinks for your child’s teeth.
  • The dentist will advise you the best oral hygiene technique and tips on how your child can improve brushing their teeth.


Do you qualify for a Dental Examination and Scale and Polish under the PRSI scheme?

Under the new terms, we are pleased to say that the PRSI will now offer a contribution to your yearly dental exam and scale and polish.

Say goodbye to tartar and hello to sparkling teeth..

Call 01 206 4218 or email for more details. Please have your PPS number ready.

Sensodyne Sensitive Dental team of the year


We are over the moon that Blackrock Clinic Dentistry is nominated for the Sensodyne Sensitive Dental team of the year award. This is very exciting news for us and will look forward to dressing up in our gowns on December 2nd. Wish us Luck!


How often should I get my teeth cleaned?

How often should I get my teeth cleaned?

The answer varies. We understand that is not a definite answer but this is the truth.

Tartar and plaque form in each person’s mouth at a different rate. Obviously your oral hygiene regime at home will play a big role in this.

**As a general rule, we usually advise 6 monthly scale and polishes. We will then advise if you can become a yearly attender or need to increase your dental visits to help with your dental health.

Plaque builds up- then hardens- becomes calculus – this is the substance you see at the back of your lower front teeth- look at yours now. Calculus can build up anywhere in the mouth but this is usually the most common place.

Once plaque hardens to calculus – you will not be able to remove this with your toothbrush. This will sit on the gum and attract more plaque causing your gum to recede.

Patients can start to have calculus build up within weeks of getting their teeth cleaned.

Points to note:

**Patients with permanent retainers usually require their teeth to be cleaned every 3 months as they cannot effectively clean around the retainer without the help of the dentist.

**Patients who suffer from dry mouth usually require 3 monthly cleans as they are more prone to dental decay with less saliva produced.

**Smokers must have their teeth cleaned regularly- studies have clearly demonstrated the links between gum disease and smoking.


Good News

We are delighted to announce that patients who are PRSI qualified will receive a contribution to their scale and polish once a year from October 28th, so no excuses! Say no to halitosis and calculus!

Call Blackrock Clinic Dentistry on 01 206 4218 to book.

To root canal treat or extract?

When do you have to decide?

When the nerve in your tooth starts to die off , pain symptoms and ultimately an absess occurs. If this happens you’re only left with two options for your tooth. Extraction or Root canal treatment.



Extraction is removal of the whole tooth. It can usually be completed in one sitting under local anesthetic by your dentist. The negative is that you inevitably lose your tooth and are therefore left with a gap.


Root Canal Treatment

Only option if you want to save your tooth and the nerve has died off or become infected.


What is root canal treatment?

Root canal treatment is the procedure that cleans out the infected or necrotic nerve tissue from the inside of the tooth. The inside of the tooth ( root canals) are then fully cleaned and disinfected before being filled and sealed to prevent infection reoccurring. The filling material used is gutta-percha. It is recommended to get a crown post root canal treatment on a molar tooth to increase the longevity and prevent fracture.


Who carries out root canal treatments?

If it is a straightforward treatment in an anterior tooth (tooth nearer the front of the mouth) most general dentists are more then competent to complete this treatment. If it is a complicated root canal treatment or a molar tooth that needs root canal the prognosis for the tooth is better if the treatment is completed by a endodontist. All root canal treatment can be completed in the surgery under local anesthetic. Sedation is also available for nervous patients.


What is an endodontist?

An endodontist is someone who has undergone specialist training to a high standard in root canal treatment on top of their general dentistry degree.


Our Endodontist

We would like to welcome Dr Geraldine Murray to our practice having undergone further studies in London in endodontics. Geraldine has settled well into the team and can complete root canals along side our anesthetist service if sedation is needed.

If you are interested in root canal treatment please call 01 206 4218 for more information or to schedule an appointment.

Tooth Whitening Tips and Tricks

Tooth whitening:


Bleaching teeth is very fashionable in this day and age. Here at Blackrock Clinic Dentistry, we are asked on a daily basis about how safe is tooth whitening. Patients want to know about all the products on the market and which ones actually work.

We would like to give a summary on tooth whitening and some of the products available and which ones we like.


In –house bleaching by the dentist:


We advise for best results to wear them for over 3hours per day or overnight. You will only a quarter fill your bleaching tray but this will be demonstrated by the dentist. Ensure to wipe your gums after placing your trays on the teeth. Our patients, usually achieve 3-4 shades whiter teeth but this could vary depending on the shade of your teeth at initial consultation. The dentist will discuss this with you. Call Blackrock Clinic Dentistry now on 01 206 4218 or email


  • This is a safe, effective way of whitening your teeth. 90% of patients will get to the shade they are happy with.
  • This is the most common form of whitening your teeth. It involves taking impressions of your teeth and custom made trays are fabricated. The trays are very easy wear and thin so one can sleep with them in easily.
  • The bleach will contain 6% hydrogen peroxide.
  • We would recommend : Post bleaching, rinse your mouth with water and wash out your trays with cold water.
  • Wait for 30 minutes before brushing your teeth. Avoid any fruits or acidic drinks for at least 1 hour but this should be minimized during the bleaching process.

Points to note:

  1. Bleaching your teeth can make them sensitive. If you have a lot of root exposure, then do not bleach your teeth unless under the supervision of your dentist. Your teeth may become sensitive after a few days of bleaching, then STOP, take a 1-2 day break. If they continue to be sensitive, then contact Blackrock Clinic Dentistry about the next steps. You likely will have to stop bleaching your teeth for now. This is rare with the current level of bleach we now use.
  2. When bleaching your teeth, avoid smoking, red wine, coffee, curry or any other dark foods that stain teeth.
  3. Use sensodyne – repair and protect or complete protection for 2 weeks prior to bleaching. Blackrock Clinic Dentistry recommends to also use sensodyne during the bleaching process if your teeth are anyways sensitive. If you find your teeth are painful post a bleaching session, then you can place sensodyne toothpaste into your bleaching tray for 1 hour.
  4. You should not bleach your teeth under 18.
  5. Bleach will not whiten composite (white) fillings/ crowns/veneers/bridges/etc…
  6. Bleaching teeth can make them slightly more porous meaning they could take up stains more easily in the future.


Whitening toothpastes:


Verdict: They will give a better glow to your teeth and they can make your teeth look whiter.

Points to note:


  1. Whitening toothpastes, in general, do not actually whiten teeth. They can remove stains etc,.. They can make the teeth look whiter in different lights.
  2. Whitening toothpastes can also make your teeth sensitive so we advise not to use if you have sensitive teeth in general or root exposure. If your teeth have starting becoming more sensitive since using a whitening toothpaste, then stop. Please find the below article


Whitening Strips


Verdict: They are easy to use for short periods of time. They will brighten up your teeth but we advise use these for a “top up” post bleaching with the trays. They may not give a uniform white result.

Points to note:

  1. There are numerous whitening strips on the market offering different levels of bleach. Obviously the stronger the bleach, the more chance of whitening your teeth. However this will also increase the risk of sensitivity. It takes approx. 7 days to see the results.
  2. Whitening strips can also make your teeth sensitive so we advise not to use if you have sensitive teeth in general or root exposure. If your teeth have starting becoming more sensitive since using a whitening toothpaste, then stop.
  3. Whitening strips will not whiten white fillings, crowns, bridges,etc.

Should I bleach my teeth if I have receding gums?


  1. The answer varies. It depends on how severe your receding gums are. It depends if your teeth are sensitive. There are different strengths of bleach and it may be possible to bleach your teeth and avoid the root surfaces of your teeth that are exposed due to your receding gums. It really is case dependent and we advise not to bleach your teeth if you do have receding gums unless you discuss it with your dentist.

For more information, please call Blackrock Clinic Dentistry on 01 206 4218.

Help, I am Nervous of the Dentist !

Help, I am Nervous of the Dentist !

Are you scared of the dentist? More than 50% of people are likely to answer yes. It is a very common phobia. Every day, Blackrock Clinic Dentistry deals with nervous patients.

People quote many reasons for feeling scared of the dentist… Fear of the drill, previous bad experience, etc..

These are all very reasonable fears and we do encourage patients to admit their reasons for not attending the dentist on a regular basis. We know it’s a cliché but admitting your fears will help you deal with the problem.

  • It is recommended to have a dental examination every 6months and usually people also require a scale and polish every 6months.
  • We highly advise that patients do not neglect their teeth. A small cavity in a tooth usually means that there is a lot of decay in that tooth. A cavity can lead to an infection in the tooth and then either root canal or an extraction of this tooth will be required.
  • If you are careless about your teeth then this can also affect your self-confidence and also increases the risk of damage to your general health.
  • If your gums are bleeding on a regular basis, then you need to visit the dentist. A mouth wash will not help solve the problem.
  • When teeth become infected this is often followed by a swelling. Swellings can increase very quickly constricting your swallowing and putting your health in danger.


So, you are convinced you should have your teeth looked at?

What is the next step on having dental treatment?

  • Find a dentist you can trust and chat to.
  • Book an initial consultation just to talk through your dental requirements.
  • Find out your options for sedation oral or i.v if you feel this will help.
  • Motivate yourself to have your teeth examined before the end of the month.
  • It may help to wear your ear phones during treatment.


Do not suffer a tooth ache in silence, let the dentist help.

Push yourself today and call. Say goodbye to stained teeth and hello to a smile you are proud of.

Blackrock Clinic Dentistry are specialists in treating nervous patients and offer oral sedation and I.V sedation with our consultant anaesthetists with emergency appointments available.

Flossing – Is it worth it??

Flossing – Is it worth it??

Why should I floss?

Flossing is a very important part of your daily oral hygiene routine. Brushing alone only cleans 70% of the tooth surfaces. By flossing you’re helping to clean the non accessible areas decreasing the likelihood of cavities or gum disease.

How should I floss?

Below is a video of the best technique.

When should I floss?

It is recommended to floss once daily. When should this be? As long as you get it into your daily routine the timing isn’t too important. It would be ideal to complete before brushing in the evening to dislodge anything that can be brushed away.

At what age should my children start?

Whenever they are able to grasp the habit. Their manual dexterity usually allows then to become half decent at flossing around 10 or 11 years old.

Should it hurt?

Normally there shouldn’t be much tenderness from flossing. Although if you haven’t flossed for a while there maybe tenderness for a couple of weeks until the gums become healthy. It is also normal for the gums to bleed on flossing if you haven’t flossed for a while. If bleeding or tenderness continues after a couple of weeks of routinely flossing it is advised to contact your dentist.

Other options?

If you have difficulty mastering the flossing technique, there are other options for interdental cleaning. You can use interdental brushes or a water pick. Talk to your dentist about what the best option for you is.

Please read the link  below for more information and opinions

Should You Floss Before or After Brushing Teeth?