Category: Uncategorized

April 7, 2023 by Gentle Dental 0 Comments

How much do dental crowns cost?

A tooth crown, also known as a dental crown, is a common dental treatment for restoring a broken or cracked tooth. Dental crowns are used to cover and protect damaged or weakened teeth, restoring their shape and function. While it’s important to understand the cost of a dental crown, you should also know what dental crown is, how it protects your tooth, and what to expect during the procedure.

What is a dental crown?

A dental crown is a prosthetic device that is placed over a damaged or weakened tooth to restore its shape, size, and strength. Crowns are typically made of porcelain, ceramic, or metal, and are custom-made to fit your tooth perfectly. They can be used to cover teeth that are cracked, chipped, or severely decayed, and can also be used to strengthen a tooth after a root canal procedure.

Why do you need a dental crown?

There are lots of reasons why you might need a dental crown. Here are a few of the most common:

To protect a weakened tooth from further damage

To cover a tooth that is severely discolored or misshapen

To cover a dental implant or a tooth that has had a root canal procedure

To cover a tooth that has a large filling and needs additional support

How does the dental crown procedure work?

It usually takes two appointments before your dental crown is fully fitted. At your first appointment, your dentist will prepare your tooth by removing any decay or damage and filing it down so that the crown can fit on top. Your dentist will take an impression of your tooth and send it to a dental lab to create your custom crown. In the meantime, you will be given a temporary crown to protect your tooth.

During your second appointment, your dentist will remove the temporary crown and replace it with your permanent crown. They will make any necessary adjustments to ensure a perfect fit, and then cement the crown in place.

Does getting a dental crown hurt?

Getting a dental crown is not a painful experience. Your dentist will use local anesthesia to numb the area around the tooth before they begin the procedure. This will ensure that you do not feel any pain during the process of preparing your tooth for the crown.

Some patients may experience minor discomfort or sensitivity after the procedure, such as mild pain, soreness, or sensitivity to hot or cold foods or beverages. These symptoms usually subside within a few days, and over-the-counter pain relievers can be used to manage any discomfort.

If you experience severe pain or discomfort after getting a dental crown, it’s important to tell your dentist right away. This could be a sign of an infection or other complication that requires prompt treatment.

How long do dental crowns last?

Tooth crowns can last for many years with proper care and maintenance. You should brush and floss your teeth regularly, and avoid biting down on hard objects or using your teeth to open things. You should also visit your dentist regularly for check-ups and cleanings.

How much do dental crowns cost?

The cost of dental crowns in New Zealand can vary depending on a few factors, such as the type of material used, the location of the dental clinic, and the extent of the damage or decay. On average, dental crowns can cost between $1,200 and $2,500 per tooth in New Zealand.

Porcelain or ceramic crowns are usually more expensive than metal crowns, but they provide a more natural-looking result. If you require a crown for a front tooth, porcelain or ceramic crowns may be recommended to match the colour of your natural teeth.

Are dental crowns covered by insurance?

In New Zealand, most dental insurance policies provide partial coverage for dental crowns, with patients expected to pay the remaining amount. It is always best to check with your dental insurance provider to see what your plan covers.

It’s important to note that the cost of a dental crown is an investment in your oral health and can prevent further damage to your teeth in the long run. If you have any concerns about the cost of dental crowns or would like to discuss payment options, speak to your dentist.

Do different types of dental crowns cost more?

Yes, some types of dental crowns are more expensive than others due to the materials used and the manufacturing process involved.

Porcelain or ceramic crowns

Porcelain or ceramic crowns are typically more expensive than metal crowns because they require more time and skill to create a natural-looking tooth shape and color. These types of crowns are often recommended for front teeth where appearance is important.

Metal crowns

Metal crowns, such as those made of gold or silver, are usually less expensive than porcelain or ceramic crowns. While they may not provide the same natural-looking result, they are very durable and long-lasting.

Porcelain fused to metal crowns

Another type of dental crown is the porcelain-fused-to-metal crown, which combines the natural-looking appearance of porcelain with the strength and durability of metal. These crowns are often used for back teeth, where strength and durability are more important than appearance.

Zirconia crowns

Zirconia crowns are also gaining popularity due to their strength, durability, and natural-looking appearance. While they may be more expensive than metal crowns, they are less expensive than porcelain or ceramic crowns.

It’s important to note that the cost of a dental crown will depend on many factors, including the materials used, the location of the dental clinic, and the extent of the damage or decay. Your dentist can recommend the best type of crown for your needs and budget. Book a dental crown consultation with Gentle Dental now.

April 3, 2023 by Gentle Dental 0 Comments

Do I need to see a dental hygienist?

Good oral hygiene isn’t just about brushing and flossing every day; it’s also about visiting your dental team regularly. While most people know it’s important to see their dentist, they’re less sure about the role a dental hygienist plays in oral care. Here’s everything you should know about visiting a dental hygienist.     

What is a dental hygienist?  

If you’ve never been to a dental hygienist, you’re not alone. Dental hygienists work alongside dentists and orthodontists to provide extra care to dental patients. Their role is to focus on preventing and treating oral health problems like gum disease, inflamed gums, loose teeth, receding gums or bad breath. Part of their role is to educate patients on caring for their teeth and gums. A typical appointment may involve your hygienist cleaning your teeth and offering advice around:  

  • Flossing more effectively  
  • Choosing the right toothbrush  
  • Preventing plaque buildup  
  • Using dental aids  

Why should I see a dental hygienist?  

Seeing a dental hygienist regularly is essential for a few reasons. While your at-home dental routine matters, it’s hard for even the most dedicated person to clean everywhere. Bacteria and plaque can build up between your back molars, under gums or behind bonded retainers. Once plaque has hardened into tartar, removing it with a toothbrush is impossible.  

Another reason to see a dental hygienist is to treat gum disease. Signs of gum disease include bad breath, bleeding gums, sore or swollen gums, a receding gum line and loose teeth. You should see a dental hygienist immediately if you have any of these signs.  

A hygienist will clean and treat your teeth and advise you on improving your oral health.  

What happens at a hygienist appointment?  

At an appointment, your dental hygienist will ask about your dental routine, what type of toothbrush you use and if you have any specific concerns, like bleeding when you brush or floss or a buildup of tartar. They will then examine your mouth and assess the health of your teeth before performing a clean, scale and polish.   

Clean, scale and polish  

Your hygienist will start removing any plaque and tartar using specialised tools like an ultrasound scraper to remove the bulk of the tartar. They will then use smaller hand-held instruments to remove stubborn remains and get between the teeth.   

After they have removed all the tartar, your hygienist will polish your teeth. Polishing helps smooth the surface of your teeth and makes it harder for plaque to accumulate in the future. Polishing also helps remove stains and will leave your teeth whiter and shinier. During this stage, your hygienist will apply a special gritty toothpaste to your teeth and clean them with an electric toothbrush.  

Once the cleaning is finished, your hygienist will ask you to rinse your mouth. Rinsing helps to get rid of any debris and leaves your mouth feeling fresh and clean.  

Deep clean  

Rather than a clean and polish, your hygienist might recommend a deep clean. A deep clean is a more intensive treatment that targets the area below the gum line. This treatment, also known as root planing and scaling, is typically recommended for people with periodontal disease. During a deep clean, your hygienist will remove plaque and tartar from the tooth surface and the root surfaces of the teeth exposed beneath the gum line.  

Your hygienist will also smooth out any rough spots on the roots of the teeth to prevent bacteria from accumulating and causing further damage. A deep clean may require multiple appointments and may be performed under local anesthesia to ensure you are comfortable.  

A dental hygienist will recommend a deep clean based on your oral health needs. Maintaining good oral hygiene practices will prevent the need for a deep clean in the first place.  

Pocket clean  

Pocket cleaning involves cleaning the pockets between the teeth and gums when bacteria and plaque build up. This buildup causes inflammation and damage to the gums, leading to periodontal disease.  

A pocket clean is usually only recommended for patients with periodontal disease. The procedure is important for maintaining good oral health and preventing further damage to the gums and teeth.  

Fluoride treatment  

Your hygienist may recommend fluoride treatment at the end of your appointment. A fluoride gel or varnish is applied to your teeth and helps to strengthen the enamel. This will also help protect your teeth from decay.  

Advice and follow-up  

Finally, your hygienist may advise on oral hygiene practices and recommend any additional treatment needed to maintain good oral health. Regular visits to the dental hygienist can help prevent gum disease, cavities, and other dental issues, making it an essential part of maintaining good oral health.  

Does visiting the dental hygienist hurt?  

Typically, scaling and polishing are not painful procedures. You might experience discomfort if you haven’t had a cleaning for a while. More intensive treatments like deep cleaning or dental pocket cleaning, use a local anesthetic to ensure you are completely comfortable and pain-free. You may feel some sensitivity after scaling, deep clean or pocket cleaning. This usually goes away after a few hours.  

If you feel any discomfort or pain during any dental hygienist procedure, tell your hygienist so that they can make you more comfortable.  

How often should I see a dental hygienist?  

You should see a dental hygienist at least once a year. If you have a history of gum disease, some dentists may recommend that you make an appointment every six months. In between appointments, continue to brush twice a day and floss daily. This will prevent the need for restorative procedures in the future.   

Need to book an appointment with a dental hygienist? Book in with Wellington’s gentlest dentists today.   

December 11, 2022 by Gentle Dental 0 Comments

How to Treat Bad Breath

Bad breath, also known as halitosis, can be embarrassing. It can impact your self-esteem and make you not want to get physically close to other people. The good news is that improving your dental hygiene is one simple way to make your mouth feel and smell clean. In more persistent or severe cases, bad breath may be a sign of an underlying health condition. Read on to discover the causes and treatment for halitosis. 

What causes bad breath? 

There is no one single cause of bad breath.


Certain foods, such as onion and garlic, can make your breath smell bad temporarily as the strong smells of these foods can linger in your mouth, on your tongue and in your stomach.

Poor Oral Habits 

If you find that your breath smells (and not just after eating food) it may be poor oral hygiene habits. After we eat, small particles of food get stuck between our teeth and gums. Brushing in the morning and again in the evening helps to remove this food. Without proper and frequent brushing and flossing, these food particles can start to smell as bacteria collects on the teeth, tongue and gums.


Smoking is another major contributor to bad breath. Nicotine and tobacco products have a strong smell and can linger for a long time on your teeth, tongue and gums.


If you suffer from halitosis and nothing seems to help, your bad breath could be caused by an underlying medical condition or medication side effects. Dry mouth can cause bad breath. Saliva naturally helps to wash away food particles in our mouths. When there is a decrease in saliva production this debris gets left behind and starts to smell.

Gum Disease 

Bad breath is also a symptom of gum disease. Periodontitis is a serious type of gum disease that results in inflamed gums, bad breath and an unpleasant taste in the mouth. If your gums are red and swollen, you may have early signs of gum disease and should see your dentist immediately.

Tonsil Stones 

Tonsil stones are caused by food getting stuck in the tonsils and hardening into calcium deposits. These can sometimes contribute to bad breath. 


A buildup of bacteria on the tongue can cause bad breath. If you experience a white film at the back of your tongue this may be odor-causing bacteria. This bacteria can interact with some amino acids and produce an unpleasant sulphur smell.  


Dentures that aren’t cleaned correctly can harbour bacteria, food particles and plaque just like our natural teeth do. This can contribute to bad breath. 

Health conditions 

As our mouth is connected to other areas of the body, bad breath isn’t only caused by poor oral health. Respiratory infections, diabetes, liver or kidney disease, nasal drip, bronchitis, and ear, nose and throat infections can all cause our breath to smell.  

What does it mean if I have bad breath all the time? 

It’s normal to experience bad breath from time to time. However, if you suffer from halitosis regularly you should see your dentist first to check for signs of gum disease. They will be able to examine your teeth and gums and may recommend that you see a dental hygienist for a thorough mouth clean. 

Bad breath can indicate that you aren’t taking care of your oral health. If this is the case, start brushing and flossing your teeth twice a day and booking in for dental visits every six months. 

If your teeth and gums are healthy and well cared for, your bad breath could be a medical-related problem. If you’re on medication that causes dry mouth, speak to your doctor about the side effects. Drinking water regularly can help alleviate some of the discomfort and the smell of bad breath.  Book in for a general checkup and talk to your doctor about your halitosis. Problems with your stomach, throat, ears and nose can also cause bad breath. 

How do I prevent bad breath? 

Studies show that around 30% of people worldwide experience halitosis. Many of these cases are caused by poor dental hygiene. Improving your oral health habits is the easiest way to work out whether your halitosis is quickly treatable. 

 Brush and Floss Every Day 

Plaque builds up on our teeth every day from the foods we eat and collects bacteria which causes bad breath. Trapped food can also start to break down and will smell if not dealt with. You can improve the smell of your breath by simply brushing for two minutes morning and night, and flossing once per day. 

 Drink More Water 

Water helps to flush away the food particles which break down in our mouths. Coffee can also cause bad breath as the smell lingers on the back of the tongue. Alleviate these food smells from your mouth by drinking water after your morning coffee and having a glass of water at lunch or after you snack. 


Mouthwash can help to freshen your breath and rid your mouth of bacteria. While it’s not a necessary step, it can help your mouth feel more fresh. 

 Scrape your tongue 

Odor-causing bacteria can build up at the back of the tongue and begin to smell. Scraping your tongue after you brush your teeth will help alleviate bacteria, food and dead cells. You can use your toothbrush or buy a tongue scraper. These are designed to apply even pressure across the back of the tongue and are easier to fit into the back of your mouth than a toothbrush. 

 Book in for a dental appointment 

Booking in for regular dental appointments will ensure that your teeth, mouth and gums are healthy. If you are experiencing bad breath it could be a sign of early gum disease. Early treatment is recommended. Book a dental appointment now with Gentle Dental.