Frequently Asked Questions in Dental Center


It is common to see people having dental Braces these days. Does everyoone need them? Why do they have to wear Braces?

People wear braces for a variety of reasons. The most common reason for orthodontic treatment with braces is to straighten out crooked teeth. Sometimes, teeth protrusion is another reason for treatment too. Other problems requiring treatment include spaced out teeth, missing teeth, improper bites and jaw disharmonies. Young children may occasionally have problems with tooth eruption, which may necessitate early orthodontic treatment.

When is a good time to start Braces?

In the majority of people who have crooked teeth but normal jaw growth, treatment can commence when most of the permanent teeth are out. This usually occurs around the age of 11 to 13 years. However, there are some instances when early intervention is needed. Some children have developing jaw disharmonies where the jaws may be growing abnormally. Some have problems with permanent tooth eruption, either due to lack of space or misdirection of the teeth. In these situations, early braces treatment is required to assist with the growth of the jaws or help guide teeth into their respective positions. This can take place anytime from 7 to 11 years of age. Very often, these problems go unnoticed, which is why the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children should see an orthodontist from 7 years of age.

Are Braces only for Teenagers? Am I too old for Braces?

Orthodontic treatment is usually done during the teenage years. This is a good age as tooth movement is more efficient in younger patients. In addition, there are some growth potential remaining in adolescents, which may be beneficial during the course of treatment. Having said that, adults can benefit from braces too. There are no age limit for braces because teeth can continue to be straightened in adulthood.

I want to straighten my teeth but I feel conscious wearing traditional metal Braces. Are there other options available?

As more adults seek orthodontic treatment, the request for less visible, hidden or invisible braces have increased. Fortunately, there are braces available to not only suit the adult wearer’s request for a less visible or invisible treatment experience, these braces satisfy their functional purpose as well as traditional metal braces.

Ceramic braces, made of tooth-coloured ceramic brackets which are less visible at a glance, is a common solution to eradicating patients’ concerns to having their braces showing. Up close, a thin metal wire can sometimes be seen threading through the braces.

Invisible braces treatment is another aesthetic option for people who wish to straighten their teeth but desire a natural appearance. This system of braces consist of numerous clear plastic aligners that are worn over the teeth. Each of these aligners is custom made and progressively moves teeth into their desired positions. The aligners are barely seen when worn over the teeth due to the transparency and clarity of the material used. These braces are convenient and hygienic as patients can remove the aligners during mealtimes and whilst cleaning their teeth.

I have heard that retainers need to be worn after Braces treatment. Why is that so?

Upon completion of orthodontic treatment, the teeth are slightly unstable in their new positions. Teeth that have been moved have a tendency to return to their original positions due to the nature of the surrounding gum tissue. In order to minimise this tendency, retainers are usually worn over the teeth to maintain their corrected positions. In the initial period, they are worn throughout the day, only to be taken out when eating and brushing. When the teeth positions stabilise after a few months, the retainers may then be worn only at night.


How long do dentures last?

In all patients, the gums and jaw bone continue to modify and ‘shrink’ with time. Most dentures will need to be replaced after 5 to 7 years. This is to ensure that the denture is well-fitting and does not ‘rock-about’ when eating.

What are the common problems with ill-fitted Dentures?

Common problems are:

  • Gum soreness or ulcers from constant rubbing of the base of the denture against the gums
  • Not able to bite on harder or chewy foods
  • Food trap under the base of the denture which may result in gum irritation, gum infection and decay
  • Denture coming loose while smiling, talking and eating

Dental Implant

Who are suitable candidates for this procedure?

  • Most patients are suitable candidates for implant treatment. In general, patients in reasonably good health, can undergo dental implant treatment.
  • Patients with conditions like uncontrolled diabetes and high blood pressure are not suitable candidates for dental implant treatment. However, once they have brought those conditions under control, a review to determine their suitability can be arranged again.
  • Our advice is to have a thorough examination (including 3-dimensional x-rays) with your specialist. It is not advisable to proceed with implant treatment without first having a detailed discussion with your dentist.

What will happen without treatment?

When a single tooth is lost, the surrounding bone will shrink. This causes neighbouring teeth to drift out of position, and opposing teeth may grow into the space left by the missing tooth. When multiple teeth are lost, patients can look aged due to loss of support for the lips.

How long do Implants last?

According to a current research, implants have a success rate of 95% in the last 10 years. However, parts of the implant may need replacement during the research period. Hence, it is important to use implant that is manufactured by reputable companies, so that replacement parts can be sourced easily when necessary.

Do Implants need special maintenance?

Implants are like our natural teeth and need to be cleaned daily. They will also need to be checked and cleaned regularly by your dentist. Professional cleaning of implants is done with special instruments to prevent damage to the surface of the implant.


How does it work?

Based on your Dentist’s diagnosis a 3D simulation of your tooth movement and final result is made. Once verified by your Dentist, a series of aligners are custom made in Align Technology’s laboratories using advanced 3D computer imaging technology. You are required to wear each aligner for two weeks before replacing it with the next aligner in the series until your teeth have been moved to the desired position.

How do I get started with Invisalign?

After your initial evaluation with your Dentist, you will discuss your goals for a new smile. This information will then be used to plan your treatment, take impressions and photographs of your teeth and smile. With advanced computer technology, the Dentist can then show you a 3D simulation of how your final smile could look like, even before you start your treatment.

How long does the Invisalign treatment take?

The total duration of treatment depends on the complexity of the treatment and is generally comparable to that of traditional braces. Typically, treatment can last between 12 and 24 months. During your consultation, your Invisalign Provider will be able to provide you with more detailed information.

How often must the Aligners be worn?

For best results, the aligners should be worn for 20 - 22 hours a day. You will be prescribed a new set of aligners every fortnight, we recommend a check-up once in every 4 – 6 weeks with your dentist.

Do the Aligners hurt?

The smooth aligners are not abrasive, nor is it harmful to the insides of your mouth. Pressure will be felt in the initial days after the fitting of your aligners. This is a good sign, as it means the aligners are moving your teeth.

How long has this technology been available?

Align Technology, Inc., the company that manufactures Invisalign®, was founded in 1997. Since then over 2.6 million patients have been or are in treatment with Invisalign®. For more information please visit the website – www.invisalign.com.my

Root Canal Treatment

Is Root Canal Treatment painful?

You may have heard from your friends that root canal treatment is very painful. Root canal treatment should be a pain free procedure with just local anaesthesia. The reason why some patients experience pain is because it is difficult to achieve profound anaesthesia for a tooth with an acute abscess. In such situations a course of antibiotics will be prescribed. Treatment will be postponed till a few days later.

Can all teeth be treated with Root Canal Treatment?

Most teeth can be treated with root canal treatment. However, if there is a crack which extends beyond the crown of the tooth or if the root is fractured then the tooth cannot be saved. Your dentist will also ensure that the tooth has adequate bone support and can be restored before proceeding with a root canal treatment.

Scaling Polishing

Will frequent Scaling and Polishing damage my teeth?

The process is perfectly safe and will not damage teeth. The instruments used are designed to remove hardened calculus effectively without damaging the surface of the teeth.

How often should I have Scaling and Polishing done?

The frequency depends on the individual’s needs. For most people requiring regular maintenance, scaling and polishing should be done once every 4 to 6 months.

Why is Scaling and Polishing necessary when I am already cleaning well at home?

The process removes hardened calculus that cannot be removed by simple tooth brushing at home. Good oral care maintenance at home is still important as it helps to prevent the formation of plaque, while scaling and polishing removes any calculus that has formed.

Teeth Whitening

Are there any side-effects associated with Teeth Whitening?

Teeth whitening is an extremely safe and straightforward procedure. The most common side effect experienced is sensitivity, the intensity varies from patient to patient. Teeth whitening will not affect the integrity of the tooth structure and existing fillings; however, existing fillings, veneers or crowns present in the front teeth are unlikely to lighten to the same degree as natural teeth and may need to be changed accordingly.

Is Teeth Whitening safe for Pregnant and nursing mothers?

Teeth whitening is generally perceived to be a safe procedure for pregnant of nursing mothers. This is because the active ingredient in whitening gel, Peroxide, breaks down in water and releases oxygen radicals, which penetrates the tooth and whitens it, and does not affect any other parts of the body. There are also no studies to indicate that teeth whitening poses any risks to a developing foetus, but, as the first trimester is a crucial period for the development of the foetus, we generally recommend caution. It is also completely safe for new mothers to use whitening gels whilst still nursing.

Is Teeth Whitening suitable for young children?

Caution is generally advised when carrying out whitening procedures on children. This is because their permanent teeth may not yet be fully developed.

What are the side effects of using whitening gel or undergoing the high-intensity light treatment?

Before teeth whitening gel is applied, a patient's lips and gums will be protected. This means that, other than short term tooth sensitivity, there are generally no other side effects experienced.

Will my teeth become more brittle after the teeth whitening treatments?

Teeth whitening does not affect the integrity of teeth, therefore it will not lead to the teeth becoming brittle.

Are there any situations whereby I would be unsuitable for the in-office whitening procedure?

Every patient is different, for example, abnormalities in the development and structure may result in innate weakness of the natural teeth. For this reason, we advise that patients undergo an individual consultation before committing to any dental procedure.

Do I have to give up drinking coffee if I wish to keep my teeth white after the procedures?

We do not advocate that patients forgo coffee in order to maintain white teeth. Our dentists will advise you on various ways to maintain your new smile; generally regular professional cleaning and use of the maintenance trays will help remove any superficial stains, including nicotine stains caused by smoking.

How white should my teeth be? How can I determine the ideal level of whiteness for my teeth?

The ideal level of whiteness varies between individuals. Our dental surgeons will be able to advise on individual cases.

If I wear the tray with whitening gel for several hours a day, instead of 1 hour per day, can I achieve whitening at home in a shorter period of time than 14 days?

As a general rule of thumb we advise against over-using the whitening tray and gel, which would include prolonged usage in a single day. We do this because we are following the protocol recommended by the manufacturers.

I have tried teeth whitening toothpaste and teeth whitening kits and these have not helped me at all. How do I know that the in-office or home whitening treatments will be effective?

The main difference between store bought products and professionally dispensed products is in the mode of application and concentration of the whitening gels used. Professionally dispensed gels are of a higher concentration and thus, deliver a more predictable and noticeable result.

My teeth are discoloured due to tetracycline. Can these procedures remove the stains?

We expect some degree of whitening to occur, even on tetracycline stained teeth. However, depending on severity of the stains, it may not be possible to remove all of the stains.

What about hygiene standards at Wong & Sim Dental Centre?

We understand the concern and importance placed on personal safety. Wong & Sim Dental Centre uses autoclave sterilisation and disposable/non-contamination techniques to ensure that the highest hygiene standards are met.

Does this procedure hurt?

Most patients experience no discomfort. However, some do experience mild temporary pain.

How much does this procedure cost?

At Wong & Sim Dental Centre our approach is to customise treatment for each individual. The cost will very much depend on the specific patient’s programme. We believe that, by doing this, we are able to ensure maximum value for patients as they are charged only for the treatment they need and not for general dental packages. This will eliminate any treatment or services not needed.


What is the difference between Porcelain Laminates and Veneers?

Porcelain laminate and veneer are different terms used to refer to a thin porcelain shell that is shaped to resemble the front surface of a tooth. These shells are often used to restore damaged or discoloured teeth.

What is used to bond the Veneers to teeth?

We use a bonding adhesive to prepare the teeth, we then permanently attach veneers using resin and a special dental curing light, which binds the two together.

How durable are Veneers? Can they chip or crack? Will they fall off?

The veneers used at Wong & Sim Dental are made of the highest quality porcelain, yet it could chip or crack in contact with hard materials. Veneers have an average lifespan of at least 15 years. Good and regular maintenance will help veneers last longer, however, they are not meant to last forever so there is a need to have replacements at some point.

Do Veneers come in standard sizes or can they be customised to fit my teeth?

At Wong & Sim Dental we customise each veneer to fit every patient's specific requirement; we do not rely on standard sizes.

Is it true that tooth enamel must be removed to make space for the Veneers? Is this harmful to my teeth and will it make them more sensitive?

The amount of enamel we remove differs from person to person. Some patients may not need any enamel removed, whilst others may need a considerable amount removed. The reason tooth enamel is removed is to ensure that veneers can be bonded to the teeth without looking too bulky or unnatural. This procedure is not harmful to your teeth and will not result in them becoming more sensitive.

What circumstances would make my teeth unsuitable for Veneers?

In general, unhealthy teeth with extensive decay and a weak structure are unsuitable for veneers. In addition, people who grind or clench their teeth are also advised to seek alternatives to veneers.

What about hygiene standards at Wong & Sim Dental Centre?

We understand the concern for personal safety. Wong & Sim Dental Centre uses autoclave sterilisation and disposable/non-contamination techniques to ensure that the highest hygiene standards are met.

Does this procedure hurt?

Most patients experience no discomfort. However, some do experience mild temporary pain.

How much does this procedure cost?

At Wong & Sim Dental our approach is to customise treatment for each individual. The cost will very much depend on each specific patient's programme. We believe that by doing this, we are able to ensure maximum value for patients as they are charged only for the treatment they need and not for general dental packages. This will eliminate any treatment or services not needed.

Wisdom Tooth Surgery

How is Wisdom Tooth Surgery done?

A wisdom tooth surgery is a minor but delicate surgical procedure to safely remove a wisdom tooth. Local anaesthesia is applied to the area that requires extraction. If the tooth is buried under the gum or has partially erupted, after making sure that the surgical area is numbed, small incisions are made to allow for the extraction of the wisdom tooth. Sometimes, a dentist is able to cleanly extract the wisdom tooth without the need for incisions. The decision on how the procedure will progress is dependent on the examination and x-rays during the initial consultation. You can with the process in the video below.

What are the different methods available to ensure a pain-free wisdom tooth surgery?

Wisdom tooth surgeries are usually done under local anaesthesia. There is a small percentage of patients who are sensitive to pain and are anxious about the procedure, these patients have the option of having the removal done under General Anesthesia by a qualified specialist to help patients sleep comfortably throughout the procedure

How safe is this procedure?

Research has shown that wisdom tooth surgery is a very safe and straight-forward procedure. With proper examination and x-rays analysis, dentists will be able to predictably and safely perform wisdom tooth surgical procedures. The x-rays helps the dentist to plan for a successful surgery and to note on details like the positioning of your wisdom tooth and how close the root is growing to the nerve that runs in the lower jaw. This is important as the compression of the nerve will cause the patient to experience some numbness to the lower lip.

There are some common discomfort that the patient will experience in the initial days after the surgery. Mild pain, bleeding and swelling lasting one of two days will be experienced, however, painkillers and other medication will be prescribed to aid with pain management and healing.