The Christmas Quiz! – What Have You Learned From Our Dental Blogs in 2019?

Please try our quiz and see what you can remember from this year’s Mike Allen Dental blogs

Are you sitting comfortably, or are you perhaps starting to panic about all the Christmas presents you haven’t even thought about buying yet? Whatever you are doing, why not take a break, make a cup of tea and see how much you can remember from our blogs this last year.

We have always tried to make our blogs informative without being too technical so that our patients can benefit from them. See how well you can remember what you have read by answering the questions, set by our Burton dentists, below. Answers are at the bottom of the page. Have fun!

  1. Does a chipped tooth need immediate treatment or can it be delayed until your next check up appointment before being examined?
  2. Name 3 reasons why you should have your teeth straightened, excluding aesthetics
  3. Name 3 options for replacing your very back tooth when lost
  4. Name the 2 main roles that a dental hygienist plays
  5. What is dentin?
  6. Apart from to determine if there is a root canal infection, why do we use x-rays in this specific case?
  7. What causes persistent bad breath?
  8. What medical issues have been linked with gum disease?
  9. Electric or manual toothbrush?
  10. Why is a root canal treated tooth sometimes referred to as a ‘dead’ tooth?


  1. It may be that the tooth will not require treatment but this can only be determined by having it checked by the dentist. If the chip has exposed the dentin layer underneath, even if only a little, tooth decay and even root canal infections can follow. However small the chip is, always get it checked out as soon as possible.
  2. Although most people opt for orthodontic treatment to improve the way that their teeth look, there are 3 good reasons why you should have this done anyway.
    • Straight teeth are generally healthier – It is easier to clean teeth that are evenly spaced and harder for food and bacteria to become trapped.
    • Efficiency – Straight teeth enable easier chewing and also put less stress on other teeth. Where teeth are crooked, an uneven bite is likely to lead to wear and possibly even breakages.
    • Confidence – An even set of teeth produces a great smile and as well as looking good, often provides a boost in confidence too.
  3. A bit of a trick one here. For most teeth there are three options, dentures, dental implants and a bridge. Where it is the very rear tooth that is missing though, a bridge can’t be used as it needs a tooth either side of the gap to be attached to.
  4. At Mike Allen’s Dental Practice, we believe that seeing the hygienist every six months or so is an essential part of your overall oral health care plan. They perform 2 key roles. Firstly, by using a ‘scale and polish’ procedure, hardened tartar can be removed from the teeth and gum line, helping to prevent gum disease. They also have an educational role to play in helping the patient to find better ways of looking after their oral health.
  5. Dentin is the part of the tooth that lies immediately below the enamel of our teeth. It is a semi porous material that allows sensations to travel from the tooth to the nerves and the brain. It is vulnerable to decay when the enamel is damaged and patients should therefore do all that they can to keep the enamel of their teeth healthy.
  6. We always take an x-ray before we perform a root canal procedure to make sure that there are no abscesses present. Where one is detected, it will be treated before the root canal treatment starts.
  7. Persistent bad breath, or halitosis, can be caused by a number of things. Foods that we eat, such as garlic, are notorious for giving us smelly breath although this is temporary. Where you have persistent bad breath, it is very possible that gum disease is present. Bad breath can often be reversed with a scale and polish and improved home dental care.
  8. It seems that gum disease is being linked with an ever increasing number of medical issues. These include heart disease, strokes, Alzheimer’s and  diabetes amongst what seems to be an ever growing list.
  9. This is largely a personal choice but evidence points to electric toothbrushes being more efficient. They are also great for children and may help them to clean their teeth better when they are tired at night.
  10. A root canal treated tooth can be said to be ‘dead’ as the nerves are removed during the procedure, leaving the treated tooth with no sensation. This is one of the reasons why you should be careful about biting harder foods with it after the procedure.

So there we are. How did you do? Is there anything that you would like us to cover in our blogs in 2020? If so, please let us know. Until then though, we wish all of our Burton patients a very merry Xmas and a happy New Year.

New year appointments can be made via our usual telephone number – 01283 845345.