Author Archives: phebe

Oral cancer

An example of an oral cancer-squamous cell carcinoma


Oral or mouth cancers are any tumours that grows anywhere in the mouth. They are often associated with tobacco use. It is a condition of concern because some oral cancers are fatal if not detected and treated early, such as squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), which is due to uncontrolled proliferation of the squamous cells. Almost all oral cancers begin in the flat cells (squamous cell) that cover the surfaces of the mouth, tongue, and lips.

Continue reading

Removable orthodontic appliances

Orthodontic treatment can be divided into:

i) Removable orthodontic appliances

ii) Fixed appliances (braces)

iii) Orthognatic surgery

Fixed orthodontic appliance

We will be focusing on removable orthodontic appliances in this article.

Firstly, you may want to know what are the types of movement involved in orthodontics and the amount of force required for that movement of a single tooth: Continue reading

Early Childhood Caries (ECC)

Rampant caries

What is it?

Early Childhood Caries (ECC) is a chronic and infectious oral disease of young children, most commonly seen in poor and minority populations.

The American Dental Association (ADA) defines ECC as “the presence of one or more decayed (non-cavitated or cavitated lesions), missing (due to caries) or filled tooth surfaces in any primary tooth in a preschool-age child between birth and 71 months of age”. Continue reading

Neonatal and natal teeth

What are they?

A baby’s first tooth usually erupts when he is about 6 months of age. Until then, they are toothless. However, in some individuals, teeth may erupt at a much earlier age, such as from birth. Natal teeth are teeth that are present or have already erupted when the baby is born. Neonatal teeth are teeth that erupts within the 1st30 days of life.

Natal/neonatal teeth


Is it normal? Continue reading

Abnormalities or variance in shape of teeth

Our teeth may have different sizes in different individuals, but they all have a typical shape to serve their different functions. Different teeth can be identified from each other by their shapes. However, sometimes abnormalities or variations occur in the shape or form of the tooth, which may be due to developmental causes, or environmental causes such as trauma or genetic causes. Here are some variations in tooth form that one may find in no particular order of occurence:

Dilacerated incisor seen from the side view

1. Dilacerated tooth Continue reading

Abnormalities in size of tooth/ teeth

1. Large tooth/ macrodontia

Macrodontia is derived from the word “macro” which means large and “dont” which refers to tooth or teeth. Macrodontia means a condition whereby a tooth or a group of teeth is abnormally larger than usual. We are not talking about the “bunny teeth” that we  had when we were about 6-7 years old, when our 2 upper front teeth has just erupted. The head and jaws of a child that age will continue to grow, and soon the 2 front teeth will no longer seem protruding and large.

Macrodontia can be divided into: Continue reading

Causes of abnormal number of teeth in your/your child’s dentition-Part II

We have discussed hypodontia in the part I of this article. Here we will look at extra teeth in addition to those in the normal dentition.

Extra tooth


Hyperdontia, or supernumerary teeth, are teeth additional to those in the normal series. They can be found anywhere in the tooth-bearing region. They are most commonly found in the upper front tooth region, followed by the lower back tooth region. Just like hypodontia, they can  be present on both sides (right and left sides) of the dentition. Hence, when there is a supernumerary tooth on one side of the jaw, a dentist would check for the possibility of a supernumerary tooth on the other side as well. Continue reading

Causes of abnormal number of teeth in your/your child’s dentition

A typical human being has 20 deciduous (or milk, primary) teeth, consisting of 4 incisors, 2 canines, and 2 molars in each jaw (upper and lower). This is followed by the permanent dentition (or secondary dentition), which consists of 4 incisors, 2 canines, 4 premolars, and 6 molars in each jaw, making up a total of 32teeth in a typical adult.


If a person has less than 20 deciduous teeth or 32 permanent teeth (not including those that has been extracted or those that are impacted), the condition is termed “hypodontia”, or “oligodontia”. If there is complete absence of teeth in one or both dentitions, it is called “anodontia”. Hypodontia is: Continue reading

Side effects of radiotherapy to the head and neck on the mouth



Radiotherapy is one of 3 treatment options that can be used to treat tumours, the other 2 being surgical removal and chemotherapy. Sometimes these therapies are used in combination with each other. There are many structures in the head and neck, therefore radiation to the head and neck area (could be due to oral, nose, skin etc cancers) can cause a multitude of complications as listed below: Continue reading

About Recaldent

GC tooth mousse

Demineralization and Remineralization

A tooth is made up of enamel, dentine, and the pulp. Enamel is the hardest part of the body, even harder than any bone in your body. This is because enamel is made up of 90% inorganic matter, consisting mainly of hydroxyapatite crystals, which are essentially made up of calcium and phosphate.

After meals, the bacteria in the mouth will break down sugar or carbohydrate left on teeth surface, producing acids which will then cause demineralization of the teeth surface, depleting it of calcium and phosphate. This process starts in enamel, and can progress to the dentine and eventually pulp, causing pulpitis. Continue reading