Our Dental Services
Harris Dental Services
Harris Dental provides solutions for all ages in the Esperance community. We are committed to providing quality personalised dental care, tailored to your individual dental needs.
Treatments and technologies we offer include:
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Many people are interested in whiter teeth. This requires a full dental assessment, to determine if whitening is required and how best to achieve it. Whitening most commonly involves using a kit that is custom-made to fit your teeth. We instruct you how to use this kit at home, under our supervision. Alternatively, tooth whitening can also be achieved by placement of white fillings, veneers or crowns.
Many people suffer from dental anxiety, so don’t feel alone if this applies to you. We will talk to you to identify the sources of your anxiety. We can then take measures to make your visits as comfortable as possible. Generally speaking, the best way to counter dental anxiety is to find an empathetic dentist and allow them to guide you through your treatment. There is no magic bullet here, rather a process of building trust with your dentist over time.
Dental Radiographs [X-rays]
Where appropriate and with your consent, dental radiographs are an extremely useful and often essential aid in providing you optimal dental care. For some radiographs, such as periodic two-yearly bitewings, the digital sensor is placed inside your mouth. Whilst for others, such as panoramic (OPG) and orthodontic (Lat Ceph) images, a different technique is used. Digital dental radiographs are extremely safe and painless, resulting in a much lower exposure to the patient than traditional film x-rays. And they provide your dentist with an immediate image that can be easily viewed by the patient.
Root Canal Therapy
Root canal therapy can save a tooth badly-damaged by decay, gum disease or trauma. Essentially, we remove the infected pulp/nerve tissue from inside your tooth, and replace it with a synthetic filling material. The tooth is usually then covered by a ceramic or metal crown for protection from future fracture. Without root canal therapy, these teeth are usually extracted.>
Splints are special mouth guards usually worn overnight, to prevent tooth and TMJ [jaw] damage from bruxism [subconscious tooth clenching and grinding]. Excessive tooth clenching and grinding can permanently damage your teeth by wearing away the enamel; resulting in cracked and broken teeth/fillings, chronic tooth hypersensitivity and bite changes over time. Bruxism can also lead to chronic headaches and painful disorders of the TMJ.
You may need urgent treatment if you have severe toothache, swelling that suggests an infection, significant dental pain that is not controlled by common painkillers or traumatic injury to the face, mouth or teeth. We aim to see and treat all patients with urgent problems as soon as possible to minimise your pain and inconvenience.
Where teeth are damaged or knocked out through injury, immediate care is often critical to ensure the best outcomes. Delays can cause long term structural damage. Similarly, aching teeth, damaged fillings or sore gums can cause longer-term complications if left untreated. We can assist in your reconstructive dental treatment following injury; which may require fillings, crown and bridgework or implants.
Sleep Apnoea & Snoring Appliances
Snoring appliances are made in conjunction with your medical doctor and a respiratory specialist, usually after a full sleep study has been performed. We design your appliance to be worn in your mouth during sleep. The appliance maintains an open, unobstructed airway; helping to promote normal sleep in people who snore, or who suffer from sleep apnoea – a medical condition where the patient stops breathing temporarily during sleep.
An osseo-integrated dental implant consists of a titanium fixture [screw] that is surgically placed into your jaw, with an artificial tooth [crown] attached to this fixture. If you decide to have a dental implant, the surgical placement is performed by a specialist periodontist in Perth. The crown is then usually placed by us here in Esperance. For patients considering implants, we will refer you to the periodontist to assess your suitability for this procedure. A CT scan and radiographs are required for him to assess you fully. Implants can also be used to anchor dentures.
Comprehensive Treatment Planning
Comprehensive examination and treatment planning, is the cornerstone of all successful dental treatment. In order to deliver quality dentistry, we must thoroughly examine you first. This process begins with a full medical history, then a discussion of your recent dental history. We then perform a clinical examination, including x-rays or photographs where required. We process all the data obtained and then present you with a costed dental treatment plan.
Jaw problems [TMJ Dysfunction] can result from chronic tooth clenching/grinding habits [see Splint Therapy below], or can be due to normal wear and tear that occurs to the TMJ/jaw joint over time. They can lead to chronic facial pain and can be extremely debilitating. TMJ dysfunction is normally treated with splint therapy, which can reduce pain symptoms and improve quality of life. In severe cases, we may refer you to a pain specialist for more comprehensive treatment.
Prevention is better than cure. If your teeth and gums are examined and cleaned regularly, it is much easier to detect and resolve problems before they become serious. Such problems include the two most common and destructive dental diseases – dental caries [tooth decay] and periodontal disease [gum disease]. Preventive care includes periodic examinations, cleaning and patient oral hygiene education. Preventive care is the backbone of our practice, and it has been well-documented that teeth that are regularly cleaned and maintained properly at home will last much longer.
General Restorative Dentistry
General restorative dentistry maintains the health, function and aesthetics of your teeth. Restorative methods range from simple direct fillings to laboratory-fabricated veneers, inlays/onlays, crowns and bridgework, to full mouth reconstructions. These restorations are usually made from highly-aesthetic tooth coloured composite resin or ceramic materials. In certain situations metallic or gold-based materials are used.
Unfortunately, not all teeth can be saved. We perform most extractions here in Esperance under local anaesthetic. In some cases, we will refer you to a specialist oral surgeon for more complex extractions performed under general anaesthetic. Wisdom teeth, for example, sometimes require specialist referral. Usually an OPG x-ray, taken here, will show us the anticipated level of complexity and the appropriate treatment required.
The focus of cosmetic dentistry is to improve the appearance of your teeth. Cosmetic procedures include tooth whitening, ceramic veneers and composite resin bonding, all using natural-looking tooth-coloured materials. These are procedures that preserve your natural tooth structure and give you the confident smile you’ve always wanted.
Dentures or “false teeth” are acrylic or metal removable prostheses for replacing a single missing tooth or multiple teeth. Dentures are customised to fit your individual mouth. Typically, people wear dentures to replace lost or missing teeth so they can continue to enjoy eating and smiling with confidence. We offer a complete denture service, including relining, cleaning and some repairs.
Sports mouthguards, that are professionally-fitted and worn during sporting activities such as football, netball, basketball, hockey and martial arts, help reduce traumatic injuries to teeth, jaws and gums. At Dr Christopher Harris and Associates we take impressions of your teeth to make a custom fitted mouth guard for each individual patient. Mouthguards are recommended for patients of all ages who participate in potentially dangerous sports or activities.
Orthodontics deals with problems of tooth and jaw development and alignment. These may be cosmetic issues or can relate to bite problems. The most common orthodontic treatments for young people are removable and fixed appliances. The visiting orthodontist, Mr Crofton Daniels, visits Esperance every two months. He performs procedures both in Esperance and Perth. We work closely with him to ensure excellent results for the correction of orthodontic problems. Orthodontic treatment can also be appropriate for some adult patients.
Pediatric dentistry promotes the dental health of your child, and also serves as an educational resource for parents. We aim to make your child’s dental experience a positive one – a visit to the dentist needn’t be something to fear. With a gentle introduction to the dentist at a young age, kids can actually look forward to having their teeth checked. At Dr Christopher Harris & Associates we assess and, where possible, treat children of all ages. The majority of children require simple preventive procedures [cleaning, fissure sealants, topical fluoride application], which can usually be performed in the chair. In more complex cases, we will refer your child to see a pediatric dental specialist in Perth, who may perform treatment under general anaesthetic.
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Don't hesitate to contact our friendly team to request an appointment, consultation, callback, or simply more information about our services.