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June 28, 2007

Tooth Whitening-expectations

Blogged under Tooth whitening by DrJean on Thursday 28 June 2007 at 6:22 pm

After doing numerous whitening procedures for different individuals in my clinic,I have come to learn some things about different kinds of responses to whitening.

Generally,most people can achieve good results.It is especially impressive on smokers’ teeth.The before and after effect is quite remarkable.I have had a number of customers who came to do whitening as an incentive for themselves to quit smoking,and I commend them for it.

As a rule of thumb,if you have teeth with an even tone or opacity,and you do not have numerous large fillings and crowns in the front teeth,AND you do not hope for toilet-bowl-white teeth after whitening,then you are likely to get satisfactory results with the Britesmile system that I use.(I can’t say about other systems,as I do not use them.)

As I have mentioned before,teeth that are tetracycline-stained usually do not respond well to teeth whitening.Tetracycline is a very strong broad-spectrum antibiotic which was previously widely used because of its effectiveness.However,when taken during teeth fomation,ie taken by a pregnant mother(with their fetus in permanent-teeth-formation stage) or by very young children(when the rest of their permanent teeth are still forming),it deposits on the dentin and enamel of the teeth and creates a permanent stain.These teeth has gray or brown stains either as a uinformed discolouration of the entire tooth or they may appear in the form of horizontal bands of stain.These bands can be of varying intensity and can appear form very mild to very dark in colour.

These are just some examples which I picked up from the internet.


As these stains are deep into the teeth(the deeper,the darker the discolouration),these tetracycline-stained teeth do not respond well to whitening.I heard a lecturer teach in a seminar that I attended recently that they may respond to a certain extend but the whitening procedure has to be repeated several times over a span of months.

The other type of teeth that do not respond well to whitening are those with 2 tones of colour on their teeth.These are teeth that has a a more yellowish and opaque colour on the portion nearer to the gums and the portion nearer to the biting surface appears transluscent.Somehow,the transluscent edge does not respond too well to the peroxide as compared to the opaque portion.Therefore the overall result may not be as favourable,especially if the expectations are high.

Speaking of expectations,I normally assess my customers before they proceed with the treatment,including their expectations.If it is unrealistic,I will discourage them from going ahead with the treatment.That is only fair.I believe this applies to all things.


June 17, 2007

“A lifetime of Healthy Smiles”

Blogged under Oral health care,Personal by DrJean on Sunday 17 June 2007 at 8:44 am

That is the tagline and vision statement for the National Oral Health Plan(NOHP) 2010 for Malaysia.

I just attended the MDA/FDI Scientific Convention(MDA stands for Malaysian Dental Association and FDI is short for Dentaire Internationale or federation of National Dental Associations) over the weekend and attended a number of lectures,some more educational than others.Well,if you want to see many,many dentists(shudder!) all at the same time(yikes!),in the same place,these kind of conventions would be the place to be in. 🙂 


Amongst the many lectures/sessions,there was one which was presented by the Oral Health Division of the Ministry of Health of Malaysia.Dr Choo Yoke Yuen,who is the Principal Assistant Director of Oral Health Division,presented an update on the NOHP 2010.The NOHP was initiated in year 2001 to improve the oral health of the nation and recently there was a review to track the progress and achievements of this plan thus far,hence the NOHP 2010 of Malaysia.

I sat there listening to someone passionately sharing about objectives and goals of the nation to improve the oral health of individuals,from children to adults.She talked about successes thus far as well as goals yet to be achieved.Strategies to achieve these goals were mentioned.

And for some moments there,I just felt a little sad.Here I was,in a convention hall with a small group of dentists,of whom I was probably one of the very few from the private sector.Most of those attending this particular lecture were from the public services.The rest of the world(ie private practitioners,were either attending another lecture running concurrently,or busy buying dental products from the host of dental exhibitors there).The Health Ministry may be achieving their oral health goals in the last 6 years and aiming for more in the coming years;but what are the dental practitioners in the private sector doing to help? By this I mean,there need to be a lot more done to educate the public and preventive measures done intentionally.Prevention is after all better than cure.There is still so many out there who are not aware of the importance of proper oral health care.

However,on a positive note,the general public are becoming more discerning and are increasingly willing to be educated about their oral and dental health.And parents are beginning to bring their children for dental checks at a young age,before any problem sets in.And children are generally being exposed to dental clinics and dentists at a younger age,where the environment is non-threatening.So,hopefully,we will have a next generation of people with not only much better teeth,but also not fearful of the dentist! Yay!

June 13, 2007

Tooth whitening-a testimonial

Blogged under Testimonial,Tooth whitening by DrJean on Wednesday 13 June 2007 at 5:56 pm

“As a dental practitioner, I’ve always wanted to have first-hand experience at tooth whitening to help me communicate the entire process more effectively to my patients. The market has been inundated with so many whitening systems that choosing a product can be quite a dilemma, even for dentists! After doing some research I settled on Britesmile.

The entire process took one hour and consisted of three 20-minute cycles.The overall experience was comfortable though I did feel some pain towards the end of the 3rd cycle. Nevertheless it was bearable and I could continue with treatment and go about my routine afterwards. This sharp, tingling pain lasted about 12 hours.

As expected the teeth appeared a little chalky immediately after, due to dehydration. By the 3rd day this settled into a nice, natural white shade which earned me some praises over Chinese new year  🙂 There was an overall improvement of about 4-5 shades, which isn’t bad at all. I am looking forward to introducing this product to my patients and hopefully we’ll be seeing brighter and happier smiles soon.”

Dr Amy Chin

Dental Surgeon,BDS (Malaya)

June 10, 2007

Dental specialities

Blogged under Dental Education by DrJean on Sunday 10 June 2007 at 11:38 pm

As a general practitioner in dentistry,I do all kinds of dental treatment except those that require further speciality for example,I do not do braces but I refer my patients to the orthodontist who does it.I thought it would be good to mention the various specialities in dentistry.These specialists actually further their studies in their respective fields for at least 3 years or more,after they complete their degree in dentistry,in order for them to practice in their field of expertise and usually their practice is limited to their speciality ie they do not do practise fields of dentistry.

Orthodontist – Dental specialist who treats and corrects crooked and misaligned teeth.They also deal with deformities of the face and jaw,and for certain cases,they will work together with an oral and maxillofacial surgeon(see below).

Endodontist – Dental specialist who performs routine as well as difficult and very complex root canal procedures,including endodontic surgery and the treatment of traumatic dental injuries.

Periodontist –  Dental specialist who specializes in prevention,diagnosis and treatment of periodontal diseases. 

Oral and maxillofacial surgeon – Dental specialist who treats consitions,defects,injuries and esthethic aspects of the mout,teeth,jaw and face.

Pediatric dentist – Dental specialist who provides primary and comprehensive oral health care for infants and children through adolescence,including those with special health care needs.

Prosthodontist – Dental specialist who restores and/or replaces teeth and their associated parts eg dentures,crowns and bridges.

Specialist in Oral Pathology and Oral Medicine – These specialists diagnose and treat oral conditions that require further investigation in the laboratory,for eg sometimes,tissue samples need to be taken for further tests.

Whenever necessary, I would refer my patients to the particular specialist,for further invstigation and treatment.


June 6, 2007

Our first anniversary

Blogged under iSmile team by DrJean on Wednesday 6 June 2007 at 2:40 am

One year has passed by.ONE YEAR!!! It feels like I just got started at iSmile.

It has been a fulfilling year for me,both as a dentist,and as an individual who wants so much to have a balanced family and work life.I still wish I can spend more time with my four kids though and it scares me to see them growing up so fast.Nevertheless,I am thankful for the current circumstances.

Naturally,one year anniversary calls for celebration.I brought my team and their husbands for Brazillian food(apa tu???) at Bossanova in Parkroyal Hotel,downtown.

The food was interesting.The buffet table had a large spread of appetizers and salads.The grill had 13 variants of meat and seafood,which was served at our table by chefs in their tall hats,holding HUGE skewers and knives.

The ambience was nice and we had these 2 lady crooners belting out jazzy and upbeat numbers.There was a dance floor,supposedly for the diners to salsa and samba.Suddenly,all of us decided that our feet had turned to lead 🙂

We had a blast!!and we took lots of photos(but of course!)




     My fantastic team                                          and their wonderful husbands!



June 3, 2007

Real pirates never floss!

Blogged under Trivia by DrJean on Sunday 3 June 2007 at 7:43 pm

I think Johnny Depp is an actor par excellence.He is obviously a class above most of his fellow actors.Naturally I am an ardent follower of the Pirates trilogy and OF COURSE I have gone to watch the Pirates of the Caribbean 3,At World’s End.

I read an interesting article recently about pirate teeth.It started with some folks wanting Mr Depp to endorse a certain Captain Jack Sparrow toothpaste.Johnny turned that down.Smart boy!He likens selling pirate toothpaste to selling shampoo to the bald. 🙂

Director Gore Verbinski actually encouraged the cast of Pirates not to brush their teeth during the filming of the movie.Yikes!! He was quoted as saying,”I thought it would be more authentic to have pirates with bad teeth since I am sure they never floss.”That’s funny,because the cast were wearing fake pirate teeth.Mr Verbinski,STAY AWAY FROM MY PATIENTS!!

I had my chance to make up my own little pirate when my 4-year old had his class party with the Pirates of Caribbean theme. 🙂


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