The Wand pain free injections


The WAND is a computerised numbing system invented in America by Milestone Scientific.  Many people have an incredible fear of needles.   The WAND  is designed to make your visit anxiety free and comfortable.  Its shape and feel matches it’s name – The WAND!

It is a highly advanced piece of technology that we have been using for many years in our practice.  So long in fact it makes the old needle system look positively archaic.  Feedback from our patients has been highly positive, and for some we can go as far to say they have been cured of their fear.  It utilises a small computer chip that very carefully controls the flow of anaesthetic, and a feather weight hand piece to deliver the anaesthetic in a way that is extraordinarily more comfortable than the old hand held needle.

The Wand also offers different ways of numbing a tooth.  Traditionally the old dental needle still used by most dentist’s cannot perform what is known as PDL numbing.  This numbing means you can numb up individual teeth and go without the entire face numb for many hours following the dental procedure. This is called “STA” and works by numbing the ligament around the individual tooth only, rather than numbing all the soft tissues such as lip and tongue around the tooth.  This is useful for some dental procedures where only one tooth requires numbing.  Ask our Brisbane Dentist next time you are in if this is suitable for you.

“It has positively changed the way we do dentistry and will positively change the way you feel about going to the dentist.”– Dr Barbara Szylkarski

So take the first steps to getting back to looking after your teeth today.  We also have some tips to help you overcome your fear of the dentist.



The Australian Dental Association (ADA) has teamed up with Dairy Australia to help promote other dairy food options and stop the tide of sugary drink consumption.You may  have seen our facebook or linkedin post earlier this month outlining the latest Australian Dental Associations education campaign.

You will be most pleased to hear that studies show, eating hard cheese may protect against tooth decay. Plain milk and sugar-free yogurt have also been shown to have either a neutral or a beneficial effect on teeth. Dairy’s beneficial impact on dental health is likely to be due to the fact that milk, cheese and yogurt contain calcium, phosphorus and the protein casein. These are nutrients which have been shown to protect tooth enamel.

So eat a small amount of hard cheese after meals to help protect teeth from dental decay. Maybe there has always been a good reason why the Europeans finish their meals with a cheese platter!

A healthy balanced diet combined with good oral hygiene and regular preventive dental care can help keep teeth healthy. Tooth decay is the most common health problem in Australia, but it is largely preventable!  Preventive dentistry is the cornerstone of exceptional dental care, this is yet another way you can protect your teeth for a lifetime.





Being an elite athlete or a great runner has always been synonymous with fit and healthy. But what Dentists may find in the mouth paints a very different picture.

It is often recommended to “fuel up” and hydrate to improve performance. The products designed to do this can be highly acidic and full of sugar. Sugar laden sport drinks, gels and chews commonly used are viscous and sticky and will hang around the teeth for long periods of time. These are like a Christmas feast for the cavity causing bacteria. Clean away the plaque that sticks along the gum line and white chalky lines have been etched into the enamel from the acid producing bacteria, the start of cavities.

Worse still, drinks splashed across front teeth and swished around the mouth have created waves of thinned enamel. These waves often follow precisely the way the drinks are consumed. Obliterating the enamel completely in some locations will leave the teeth raw and sensitive.

During high-intensity training the mouth also dries out, removing the critical saliva. Saliva is the lifesaving substance that teeth long for, to push the minerals back into the teeth. Many runners are mouth breathers with saliva that has become thick and frothy.   The type of saliva that does little to wash away and neutralise the acids and lubricate the mouth.

There is also a high incidence of broken teeth, failed restorations and short teeth. Runners and athletes are commonly teeth grinders or clenches, especially during periods of intense work out. Teeth that have already been softened by the acids are easily worn away. Sticky and chewy protein bars and energy blocks will help to remove fillings and crowns already struggling to hang on, to short weak teeth. Creating restorative plans that will last can be complex and challenging and require expert dentistry.

So what should you do? Rinse with water after consumption of sugars and acidic drinks. It is best to not consume them at all, but try and avoid sugar the remainder of the day to give the teeth a break.   It has been shown that it is the number of repeated sugar and acid attacks throughout a day that causes the most destruction. There is much debate as to whether the consumption of these products actually help to improve performance. Use products such as tooth mousse that will help to restore lost minerals. And once the oral environment is healthy, consider a dental splint that clips to the top teeth during the night to protect against further wear to the teeth.

We have also performed many full mouth rehabilitations, having undertaken the expert dental training required to match your elite level fitness training.



Leichhardt Street Dental Practice is located in Spring Hill with easy free parking and easy access. For 22 years, Dr Barbara Szylkarski has been a dental provider for the Department of Veteran Affairs, offering eligible veterans treatment with no out-of-pocket expense in accordance with the DVA’s schedule.

Dr Barbara Szylkarski has worked alongside Brisbane specialists in completing both simple and complex DVA treatments, and has been involved in the process of seeking approvals for more complex treatments.

Please let us know when you book your appointment that you are an eligible DVA card holder so we can have the necessary paper work completed for you.

Call today on (07) 3839 7279.

Holes in my teeth


This is a question I am asked all the time – Why do I always have holes in my teeth?  And the answer is far more complex than you might think.


Everyone has different types of bacteria in their mouth which cause holes.  This bacteria  passed on from  mother/father to child has been found to be good bacteria. But the bacteria changes to bad bacteria if the environment changes.  For Example:  With high sugar diets, hole causing bacteria grow in abundance and good bacteria decrease. We used to ask if your mum or dad had bad teeth as we thought this meant the child did.  But we now know we can change the bacteria if we improve the diet.


We also have different types of enamel.  Some of us have had fluoride as children and will have stronger enamel.  If you were very sick as a child, had a lot of medication and fevers, you are far more likely to have weaker enamel that allows holes to form in teeth easily.  Some people have genetic enamel conditions. These are factors we do not have a great deal of control over.

What can I do to stop getting holes in my teeth?

What we can do is control the environment in our mouth.  If we are more susceptible to dental disease, we have to work harder at controlling the environment to stop holes forming in our teeth.

Obviously good brushing and flossing are critical factors, but we often forget about saliva and diet.
We supply the bacteria in our mouth with sugar, the bacteria convert this to acid and create holes in our teeth.  Tooth cavities are classified as a disease.  Sometimes we have very acidic diets and go straight to dissolving the protective enamel on our teeth.  A critical factor in creating a healthy mouth is a good supply of saliva.  Saliva is needed to neutralise the acids we have in our diet as well as those produced by bacteria.  So start drinking more water today!  At least 2 litres per day is needed to hydrate your body.

Once you have done that you then need to get the saliva glands working.  Chewing sugar free gum is the best way of doing this.  If you don’t like gum, try chewing celery as its full of water and helps to stimulate the saliva glands with the chewing action.

Saliva and plaque testing is one of the most effective tests we can do at your examination, we can determine your risk, identify the cause and start you on a plan to reverse your dental destruction.  Please don’t hesitate to let us know if this is something you would like to try when you book in for your next examination and chat further to answer your question “why do I always have holes in my teeth?”


time2switch your Private Health Insurance

How much are you getting back from your Private Health Fund?

Time to Switch is the new campaign launched by the Australian Dental Association in an effort to create more transparency with Private Health Insurance. We are often asked about health insurance rebates, and how much will they pay? The rebates are so different from patient to patient varying from 20% rebate up to 90% rebate.

So the question that needs to be answered is do you have the right kind of policy, particularly when it comes to extras cover? To figure this out can be a near impossible exercise. Websites that compare insurance policies are generally based on commissions the insurance companies pay to the websites and are also dependent on which health funds participate with the website.

According to the ACCC there are over 20 000 policies in the market place with inconsistent restrictions and exemptions making it near impossible to compare policies.

Private Health Insurers have been granted another premium increase this year. At the same time that premiums have been going up the dental extras rebates that you receive have been going down. If you are unhappy with the way your Private Health Insurer has been treating you, then go to time2switch. You can compare your policy, make a complaint or choose a new policy. The resources are incredibly thorough and worth a visit.



Saliva plays a vital role in dental health. It is nature’s primary defence system for the oral environment, and is particularly important for protecting teeth. Saliva protects your teeth by neutralising acid, flushing food and bacteria from the oral cavity, and delivering calcium, phosphate and fluoride to our teeth.

But what happens when saliva stops protecting our teeth?

Basically, the oral cavity becomes more acidic. There is reduced buffering of acid, reduced clearance of bacteria and food from the mouth, and diminished re-mineralizing potential. An acidic environment can cause softening of enamel leading to increased wear and erosion.  Such environment also favours the propagation of more aciduric and cariogenic bacteria, which increases the risk of dental cavities.

We offer a simple test to evaluate how well your saliva is protecting your teeth. Saliva’s effectiveness is influenced by several properties including flow rates, viscosity, pH, buffering capacity, diet and oral hygiene. We measure these properties to determine the effectiveness of your saliva and determine the answer to why the saliva is not protecting the teeth. With an understanding and recognition of the problem, appropriate lifestyle and oral hygiene changes can be made to move the oral environment back into balance.



The issue of sugary drinks has received an enormous amount of publicity, particularly relating to the health risks caused by excess consumption. These not only include tooth decay but also obesity and type 2 diabetes, a problem in children and adolescents as well as adult.

There are some extremely interesting facts now available on the website
The statistics offer a very sobering picture of the state of our sugar consumption. Remember to think twice before grabbing that soft drink or vitamin water. Think water, milk or unsweetened drinks. The website also has a great resource to help you cut back. So get started today.



It may be time to start flossing and stop mouth washing particularly if you feel you always have bad breath. Is a mouthwash worth using and should you believe all the claims made on the side of the mouthwash bottle?
The answer to this is not so straight forward. There are both pros and cons to using a mouthwash and this can differ depending on the ingredient in the mouthwash.

Will it cut down my risk of getting cavities?
If the mouthwash contains fluoride there are numerous studies to support the fact that it will cut down your risk of demineralization of the enamel and decrease cavities.

Will it control my gum disease?
Gum disease is caused by plaque and bacteria that inflame and infect the gum. A mouthwash that contains chlorhexidine is known to have some antibacterial action; however excessive use leads to a staining on the teeth.

Will it help with mouth ulcers?
A mouthwash can help to decrease bacteria around the ulcer and decrease the irritation of the area.

Can they be irritating?
The mouthwash may actually irritate the gums, ulcers and soft tissues if the alcohol content in the mouth rinse is too high.

Will it improve my bad breath?
This is probably the most common reason for using a mouthwash. However the effect is very short lived and will not make up for poor oral hygiene. It is the equivalent of using a load of deodorant but without actually ever having a shower.

Can it cause cancer?
The debate continues on the likelihood that the alcohol content in the mouthwash will result in cancer. Many companies now make an alcohol free version so if you are at all worried, avoid the alcohol containing mouthwash.



Something can be done about sensitive teeth which can arise from acid attack, grinding and tooth brush abrasion.

You may develop sensitivity when the protective enamel is disrupted and wears away to expose the dentine layer underneath. That’s the layer you feel if you didn’t have anaesthetic with your fillings.  It’s made up of lots of little pipes that contain fluid and nerve endings.  When different temperature liquids run across these tubules or this tooth structure is touched it causes a jolt of pain.  This pain is generally relieved shortly after the stimulus is removed.

Most desensitizing toothpaste utilises chemistry that aims to block these tubules, with some working better than others.  The latest research is showing that calcium and phosphate, minerals that exist in teeth,  work best to block these tubules.  These minerals are available in tooth mousse by GC.   Colgate has also released some new independent research that shows its Arginine chemistry in Pro-Relief toothpaste is very effective at desensitizing and remineralizing tooth structure.
If you apply these to teeth daily for about 4 weeks you can have relief from that cold pain.

  • Causes of Sensitivity:
    Gum Recession and gum disease
  • Excessive consumption of acidic drinks and reflux
  • Grinding your teeth
  • Incorrect Brushing techniques
  • Chipped and Broken teeth
  • Remember:
    Choose a soft toothbrush and use a good brushing technique
  • Visit your GP to treat any reflux and regurgitation from stomach acid
  • Wear a splint if you are grinding your teeth and fix any broken teeth
  • Drink plenty of water so you have a good saliva flow to carry the minerals to your teeth
  • Avoid acidic drinks

Click Here to Book an appointment online today or call us on (07) 3839 7279