FAQs

Click on below for our answers or views on Frequently Asked Questions...

 

How much does a check up cost?

Phone our friendly knowledgeable staff for the current cost of a standard 15 minute dental checkup.  This is a good starting point to get a general idea of your future treatment needs.  Please note however than in many situations X-rays are required before dental treatment can commence and our staff can give you the current price for these X-rays depending on the type of X-ray required.   REMEMBER:  Many dental problems have no obvious symptoms like pain or swelling until it is too late.  Call us on 3829 2299 to schedule an appointment with or without X-rays. [Why do dentists need X-Rays click here]

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Do you provide payment plans or accounts?

We have always been able to tailor make our treatment plans to our patients' needs and financial situations.  We deal with emergencies first and can then stage the remaining dental treatment as per our patient's financial situation.  For example, following the first check up if a patient needs 6 fillings and 2 extractions, a patient may choose to do just 3 of the most urgent fillings first.  We then work with the patient and can do say 1 filling per week or 1 filling per fortnight or all 3 remainign fillings together or 1 filling every 3 months...  We can and will do whatever suits our patients best.

Therefore, we have never really needed our patients to take any additional loans from finance companies.  We strongly believe there is no need to get patients into any debt for dental treatment as we are able to liase and plan with our patients to enable them to complete their dental treatment as per their individual financial situation.

For this same reason we also do not provide accounts as we find that by giving the patient a firm quote and a treatment plan and a good idea of what their next appointment will cost, they themselves can then budget and set aside the money for their dental treatment needs. 

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Can I stage my work to suit my financial circumstances?

Most certainly you can as also discussed in the question above.   At Toothwise, it is common for our dentists to work out a treatment plan in close consultation with you that suits your cash flow and schedule the less urgent work into the future.  Please discuss this with your dentist at your consultation.

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What will my health fund cover and can I claim on the day?

We are Preferred Providers for MBF [click here for MBF website] who pay 70%, 80% pr 90% of the cost of general dental treatment depending on the level of cover you pay for.   Some health funds like HCF pay 100% for a routine dental checkup including X-rays.  Some other health funds may pay less than 70% of treatment costs so there is a wide variation in what your health fund might cover.  You will need to contact your individual health fund to check on your entitlements remaining for the year as limits per annum apply.  Some dental treatments like crowns and bridges are categorised as 'major' dental and you need to check on your entitlement for these procedures which will often lapse with each new year if not used for planned treatment.

We are able to provide you with a list of the item codes for each future dental procedure that we recommend so that you can check your entitlement for that particular procedure with your fund.

We have HICAPs facilities which means you can claim the health fund entitlement on the day and only need to pay the gap which can be paid by EFTPOS, credit card, cheque or cash.   Kindly note we do not provide accounts and payment is required on the day of treatment.

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Why can't you give me a firm quote over the phone?

We are happy to give you an estimate of the range of fees involved, but to get a firm quote the dentist needs to first examine your mouth carefully preferably with X-rays.   [Why do dentists need X-Rays click here] For example, fillings in teeth generally depend on the size of the cavity.  So whilst a small filling generally will cost less than a very large filling if say pins are needed to hold the smaller filling in place then this is an additional cost only an examination will reveal.  Or if the filling is very deep and there is nerve exposure then we would need to do some nerve treatment first before the filling and that also would be an additional cost.

Similarly for extractions, a straightforward extraction will cost less than an extraction where the tooth is badly broken down or has hooked roots which show on the X-ray.  An extraction where this is the case will take longer and the fees then would need to be higher.  Similarly with crowns, we would need to discuss if you prefer a porcelain or gold crown, if you are allergic to metals, if it is a front tooth or back tooth, if it is easy to get to or if you have a gag reflex etc.  Root canal treatment costs also vary depending on whether it has one nerve canal or multiple canals, whether the infection is small and easy to clear up or it remains unsettled after the initial cleaning.

There are many variables that affect dental treatment and it is almost impossible to give you a firm quote over the phone.  We encourage you to have a full dental examination preferably with X-rays if you wish to get a comprehensive quote on all the dental work that is needed in your mouth.  We will print off your quote and discuss your treatment options with you so that you know exactly what you are up for and there are no hidden surprises.  The majority of our patients start here and they choose what they want done first. [How much does a check up cost? click here]

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Do you do white fillings?

Given a choice, in today's day and age hardly anyone ever asks for amalgam (silver) fillings.  Most people have read and heard of possible harmful effects of amalgam fillings and prefer to have the white fillings.  At Toothwise we offer white fillings.  White fillings such as composite resins work on the principle of bonding.  The advantage of bonding is that it strengthens the tooth structure and of course cosmetically white fillings are far superior to the black looking amalgam fillings.  Amalgams rely on grooves, pits and undercuts that need to be prepared in the tooth which tends to weaken the tooth structure and fracture of cusps of teeth around amalgam fillings is quite common.  White fillings were traditionally used in the front teeth for many years but with improved material technology, white fillings in all teeth are now the norm.

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Why do dentists need X-rays?

X-rays are required to check for decay/cavities under existing fillings or crowns, under biting surfaces, in between teeth, bone levels around teeth as well as to check for abscesses, cysts, tumors inside the jaw bones and stones in salivary ducts - problemsj that cannot be seen just with the naked eye.   Combined with a visual examination, X-rays provide valuable additional information that allows the dentist to make a full diagnosis taking much of the guess work out of treatment planning.

At Toothwise, we have X-ray machines and sensors required to take both Intra Oral and Extra Oral X-rays.  Whilst many dental surgeries still use film, we invested in digital radiography which provides for sharp clear images in an instant on the computer screen and there is no waiting time for processing and developing the film.  More importantly, the use of digital technology means that the exposure to radiation is a fraction of the radiation for film based X-rays making it an extremely safe procedure for all our patients.  Infact with this current digital technology, radiation exposure is so minimal that a lead apron is no longer regarded as essential.

Also having a digital image of your teeth and jaws on a computer screen allows the dentist to zoom into the image and explore areas of concern with you which you can also see from your chairside monitor allowing you to participate in your treatment planning.  Digital images can also be sent to a specialist in an instant if required.

Digital X-ray equipment in the surgeryIntra Oral X-rays are the most common type of X-ray taken inside the mouth and the commonly used ones are Bite Wing and Periapical X-rays.  One Bite Wing X-rays shows areas of decay between or on the biting surfaces of back teeth as well as bone levels between these teeth.  They however do not show the roots of teeth.  Back to top

 

Periapical Digital X-ray taken at Toothwise

 

To be able to see a whole tooth (i.e. the crown and tooth root), Periapical X-rays need to be taken.  Periapical X-rays are routinely needed when doing root canal treatment and for diagnosis of the condition of individual teeth.

 

 

Toothwise OPG X-ray machineOPG Digital X-ray taken at ToothwiseTo be able to see the entire upper and lower jaw, sinus and nasal cavities, the jaw joint also called the tempor-mandibular joint (TMJ), all the teeth and bone levels the OPG X-ray is required.  The OPG allows dentist to look for impacted teeth, problems under roots of all teeth where present, cysts/tumors in jaw bones, stones in salivary ducts, health of the sinuses, blockages in nasal cavities.  The Digital OPG is captured diectly on the computer.  As a new patient the dentist may need to take an OPG and Bite wing X-rays right and left sides to identify problems obvious or hidden.

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Why see a Hygienist?

Hygienists undergo rigorous training in the art and science of mantaining periodontal (gum and bone) health of patients which involves in-depth training for 4 years (more than a dentist!) in scaling, cleaning and more involved procedures like root planing in order to maintain the health of the gums and bone that support the teeth.  Hygienists are allocated more time to take care of your gums and bone and to provide you with advise on prevention of gum, bone and tooth disease.

Hygienists are also trained to provide comprehensive professional advice on diet and how it affects your dental health, dental hygiene procedures like brushing, flossing and rinsing, ill effects of smoking on gum and bone, checking for signs of tooth wear from grinding, looking for and advising patients of the deleterious effects of drinking fizzy drinks, performing oral cancer checks, taking X-rays including full jaw X-rays (OPG) that allow for diagnosis of impacted teeth, bone cysts and tumours.

Katie Martens our hygienist is very skilled and much loved by our patients.  Her appointment book is filled months in advance by patients who appreciate the difference in their oral health once they have had their oral hygiene appointment.  Katie is also a therapist and able to treat children under 18years of age.  She is lso trained to perform all the tooth whitening procedures that are done in the office which we call Zoom Whitening. [See example of Zoom teeth whitening]

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Is there such a thing as pain free dentistry?

Yes, good dentistry today is pain free and this does not mean going under General Anaesthetic to not feel pain.  Good local anaesthetic = pain free dentistry.  Administering the local anaesthetic does not need to be painful either.  We use several special techniques to ensure that you do not feel the "needle" much.  In fact, at Toothwise we call it the "magic water".  Our younger patients actually believe that they have had magic water and never realise (unless they are told!) that they indeed had a needle.  The number of adults that are surprised that we injected them are numerous and often compliment us on our technique.

Dental equipment and techniques have improved hugely over the years and it is definitely a much gentler experience than it used to be and we at Toothwise certainly work as hard as we can so our patients experience no or very little discomfort.  We rarely have to offer General Anaesthesia to even our most phobic and apprehensive patients as we believe we can provide pain free dentistry in our rooms just by using good, modern techniques of pain and patient management.

If however, you let things slide and do not attend to dental problems quickly resulting in deep infections in the bone or painful swellings in the face, it can be difficult to achieve good anaesthesia.  Pain free dentistry begins with you as the more regularly you see the dentist the less invasive it has to be and the easier it is on you.  It also is cheaper as problems are detected at an earlier stage and it takes less time to fix.

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Why do dentists sometimes need to ref?

Most of the major dental procedures such as crowns, bridges, root canal and surgical extraction are done by us at Toothwise. However for the more complex cases we prefer to refer you to dentists who have specialised in these procedures and have the highly specialised equipment such as powerful microscopes to find nerve canals and surgical equipment for surgical extractions.

Please understand we receive no benefit from such referals only the knowledge that your specialised problem will be solved and you will return to us as our patient.

 

 

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Do you take new patients and what about patient's with emergencies?

The majority of our patients are referred to us by either family members or friends.  This word of mouth referral system keeps us extremely busy but we welcome new patients as well.  We have three dentists and a hygienist and we offer extended hours of operation (8 am to 7:30 pm) Monday to Thursday and 8 am to 5 pm on Friday.

Remember that many dental problems have no obvious symptoms like pain or swelling until it is too late. Remember too the worst time to see a dentist is when you have an emergency.  This is because it is very rare that we would have an appointment available on the day as we are a busy practice.  Also, dealing with an extremely painful tooth and swollen face or a broken tooth takes longer and is more difficult for all parties.  Often it is impossible to even touch a painful tooth and antibiotics have to be taken before the actual problem can be treated.

We promise to see our existing regular patients with emergencies on the day, but it is often difficult to extend this same kind of commitment to care to someone who has not been to a dentist in years and waits until they have a severe toothache to seek help.  We make all efforts to see emergencies but as it disrupts our scheduling and keeps other patients waiting we encourage you to see us sooner rather than later when you feel pain.

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Why do Dentists sometimes run late?

At Toothwise we strive to run on time as we acknowledge that your time is valuable.  We do this by taking great care to estimate the right amount of time required for the procedures we plan to do at the next visit for our patients.  Occasionally even during planned appointments the patient may feel unwell and we need to give them extra time to recover.  Sometimes, treatment doesn't go according to plan for example a tooth may snap off during an extraction or a cavity may be deeper than anticipated requiring some nerve treatment and this all adds to the original estimated time.

Sometimes patients present with emergencies and it is impossible to gauge how long it takes us to get them out of trouble although our receptionists try and manage this by asking several routine important questions.  We manage this by blocking off times in our appointment books for emergencies but these cases may vary from say smoothening a sharp spot on a tooth to say managing a full blown abscess and it is not possible to anticipate the time needed in advance for these procedures.

If we run more than 5-10 minutes late we will keep you informed so that you can choose to either reschedule your appointment or wait with us.  We do appreciate your understanding on this issue.

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Why do you need 24 hours notice to cancel an appointment?  Is there a cancellation Fee?

We are an extremely busy practice and sometimes our patients have to wait for 1 -2 weeks for appointments especially if they want the popular evening slots.  If you are unable to keep your appointment, you can help another patient by letting us know in advance and we can then offer your appointment time to them.  To be able to do this you need to give us at least 24 - 48 hours notice.  Without sufficent notice, the time that was reserved for you goes wasted and it is very unproductive for us as well and adds to the cost of running the business.  It also affects our casual staff who miss out on work because of cancellations.

We do our best to minimise cancellations by confirming appointments with you 1 week before and then where requested 1 day before.  So please consider this when making an appointment or confirming with our staff.  We hope that someday when you are in need of an appointment, another patient who cannot make it to their appointment offers you the same courtesy and you are able to be seen on the day especially if you have a dental emergency.

To be fair to all our patients and our staff we reserve the right to apply a cancellation charge to your account if less than 24 hours notice is given for no valid reason.

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Why don't you work Saturdays?

We are open from 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday and also have late night appointments available as they are needed until 7 pm Monday to Thursday.  As a result, we are able to see most patients with their varied work schedules during the week.  We find that with the extended hours we offer very few patients need to see us on Saturday and it suits everyone.

We understand Saturday appointments are provided by some practices. We think you probably have better things to do on precious Saturdays if there are other times to visit.  In our experience there is also a high instance of late notice cancellation and 'no show' on Saturdays and this really defeats the purpose of being open then.

Weekends allow the whole team to rest and play so that we can offer you extended hours during the week.

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ADA Qld

Member of Australian Dental Association

07 3829 2299
reception@toothwise.com.au


Redland Bay Dental Surgery
Shop 3 Redland Bay Village
Cnr Broadwater Tce &  Stradbroke St
Redland Bay Qld 4165

Surgery Hours:
  • Mon-Fri 9 am to 5 pm
  • (late nights available
    by appointment)

Click here for map

Toothwise Redland Bay Dental Surgery frontage

Our Mission

Dental care is our profession, but caring for you is our passion

Our Vision

Wise with teeth .... teeth for life

Our Values

Genuine care, operational excellence, extraordinary service, new materials & innovative technologies to deliver quality, gentle, dental care