Dr Christopher Barker



Does Medicare cover any treatments?

Periodontal treatment in private practice is not subsidised by Medicare. However a rebate may be available from Medicare for the cost of a CT scan if it is required.

What rebate will I get from my private health cover?

Please check with your health insurance provider to determine your eligibility for partial reimbursement for fees quoted. The rebates available vary between providers, and we recommend you quote the ADA code numbers listed in your treatment plan to determine your ‘out of pocket’ expenses.



What is Periodontitis?

Periodontal disease (known as Periodontitis) is inflammation and infection of the gums it can affect one tooth or many teeth. It is caused by plaque which is a thick and sticky film of bacteria that builds up on teeth.  Plaque can harden to become calculus, also known as tartar.  Plaque and calculus are caused by poor oral hygiene (ie not brushing or flossing often enough).

Who can suffer form Periodontitis?

Recent studies suggest that up to 50-75% of periodontitis can be attributed to genetic influences. Therefore periodontitis can be inherited and the condition can run in families. This destructive reaction to plaque is also influenced by the body’s immune response. Anything which suppresses your immune response has the potential to accelerate periodontal disease (such as smoking). Numerous studies have show that gum disease is far more common and more destructive in smokers. Similarly, diabetes will exaggerate the destructive response to plaque. Other conditions that exacerbate the symptoms of periodontal disease include puberty, pregnancy, stress and some medications.

Why treat periodontitis?

If periodontitis is not treated the gums around your teeth  ‘lose their grip’ on the tooth, which can make them, fall out.  Without your teeth it is harder to chew crunchy, tough or chewy foods.

Trying to fix the issues can represent many challenges, can be significantly more expensive and in some cases the only available options may not be ideal

As such the best way to manage this is take proactive approach and manage it initially. As this will be the most economical and predictable option on the long term.



How much do dental implants cost?

The treatment and related costs depend on many contributing factors and can vary from person to person.  The costs are calculated from the number of dental implants to be inserted, and if the bone has to be “built up” to support the implant.  We will discuss the proposed treatment along with a written fee estimate before any treatment.

Who can have dental implants?

Dental implants can provide an optimal solution for all age groups as long as the jaw bone’s growth is complete.  Dental implant treatment requires a good general state of health, good gum (periodontal) health, and sufficient bone quality and volume.

Whether dental implants are the best solution in an individual case can only be determined by detailed examination and discussion with your dentist / periodontist.  If all the medical requirements are met, careful treatment planning by the dentist is also required if an optimal and long-lasting outcome is to be achieved.

How long after the implant is placed can the crown be put on top?

Once your implant is inserted it will be left to heal for between 3 to 6 months.  A temporary plate/denture can be made for use during the healing process.

How do I care for my Implants?

To maintain your dental implants, similar to your natural teeth, you will need regular check-ups and ongoing good home care.  Maintaining good oral hygiene is important for the care of your new implants and a significant factor in the long-term success of implant treatment is continued thorough but gentle removal of plaque and tartar.  We will develop a home care plan to increase the chance of success of your implant.

Regular check-ups including professional implant and tooth cleaning is recommended and we will work together with your dentist to maintain your implant.