Here at The Dental Practice, we believe that regular dental examinations can help our patients achieve optimum dental health. During an examination, the teeth, gums and soft tissues are checked for any abnormalities. Early discovery of any dental disease allows for easier intervention. This means quick, easy and cost-effective dentistry for you !
Dental X-rays are a very important diagnostic tool as they can detect early decay in hard to see areas such as in between teeth and under existing fillings. As a new patient, you may be offered X-rays as part of your initial consultation if your clinician thinks it appropriate. It is recommended that existing patients have X-rays taken of their teeth every two years or so unless there is a problem, in which case they may be required sooner.
At The Dental Practice, we have digital X-ray facilities.
Your safety is paramount, our radiography equipment undergoes annual servicing and we have a radiation monitoring system.
Dental or oral hygiene is the activity of keeping your mouth clean in order to prevent dental disorders such as cavities, gum disease, and bad breath. Oral hygiene is something that can and should be taken care of by both you and your Dental Professional.
At The Dental Practice, we can offer our patients a variety of different filling materials including :
We no longer use amalgam fillings. If an old amalgam needs replacing we will use composite filling material.
Composite fillings are tooth coloured. These types of fillings have a number advantages :
- They can alter the appearance of teeth changing both shape and colour.
- They are bonded to tooth structure which means that they actually integrate with the tooth, thereby sealing the gap between tooth and filling and adding strength to the tooth
Composite is bonded directly onto the tooth and so small chips and fractures can be easily repaired.
Less tooth substance needs to be removed when preparing the tooth to accommodate a white filling.
Composite fillings are completed in only one visit.
Ceramic inlays are tooth coloured fillings for use in back teeth when a high degree of aesthetics and strength is required. These require two dental appointments.
- The tooth is prepared by removing all decay and shaping the tooth appropriately then an impression is taken which is sent to the laboratory where the ceramic inlay is made.
- A second appointment a week later allows for the permanent fixation of the ceramic restoration with a strong dental cement.
A child’s first adult molars grow into the mouth – one in each corner – at around 6 years old. No baby teeth will fall out prior to this as the adult molars grow behind the last milk tooth at the back of the mouth.
Second adult molars grow in behind the first adult molars at around 12 years of age. These 6 and 12 year old molars are formed with deep grooves (fissures) on their biting surface which can harbour millions of cavity causing bacteria. Some of these fissures are too narrow for even one toothbrush fibre to reach making them more prone to decay.
By having these tooth fissures sealed, decay can be prevented on the biting surfaces of the teeth. The best time to place fissure sealants is as soon as possible after they have grown into the mouth. However, they can be done at any time.
The procedure is quick and easy and is completed in three simple steps :
- The teeth are thoroughly cleaned
- The sealant is applied which flows into the grooves
- The sealant is set hard with a blue light leaving a smooth, easy to clean surface.
Having fissure sealants placed is a quick and easy procedure that can be provided by any of our dentists.
Fissure sealants can last many years and do not routinely need to be reapplied.
Dental veneers (also referred to as porcelain veneers or porcelain laminates) are wafer thin, custom made shells of tooth coloured materials designed to cover the front surface of teeth.
These shells are bonded to the front of the teeth changing their colour, shape, size or length resulting in an improved appearance.
Dental veneers can achieve results similar to crowns but the preparation of the tooth to accommodate the veneer is much less than that of a crown preparation. This means it is a much less invasive solution if you want to improve the aesthetics of your smile. Dental veneers are not as strong as crowns and are not suitable for everyone.
Porcelain dental veneers are made in the laboratory and require a second ‘fitting’ appointment. A less expensive alternative are resin composite veneers. Composite veneers are applied by your Dentist in a single visit and consist of the same tooth coloured material used for fillings. However, porcelain veneers resist stains better than composite veneers and better mimic the light reflecting properties of natural teeth.
Discuss the options with your Dentist and they will advise you on the method which will best suit your individual needs.
A dental bridge is a device used to fill the space where a tooth has fallen out or been removed. A typical dental bridge consists of a pontic (a false tooth or teeth) that is attached to crowns on either side and permanently bonded in place.
Without the use of a bridge, spaces in the mouth from missing teeth can cause surrounding teeth to shift, twist or tip leading to chewing and/or jaw alignment problems. The poor position of these teeth may cause cleaning problems and lead to gum disease. Dental bridges safeguard the position of the existing teeth and help maintain a healthy, vibrant and functional smile.
When a tooth is cracked, decayed, or damaged, a dental crown may need to be fitted onto the tooth.
A dental crown is a permanent covering that fits over the original tooth. Permanent crowns can be made of zirconia/porcelain, gold, and other metals.
Zirconia/porcelain crowns typically have the most realistic appearance. For your incisors, canines, and premolars white crowns are the best choice. However, when crowning back molar teeth the material of choice is gold although this is a material seldom used these days ! It is strong and it has a similar wear resistance to your own enamel.
Compared to a metal/ceramic (white) crown it requires less preparation of the existing tooth to fit a gold crown. Before deciding, practice smiling in the mirror……which is most important, strength or beauty !?
Dental crowns can whiten, reshape and realign existing teeth.
Although not the ideal solution, dentures can provide an economical and functional restoration that will last for many years.
Dentures are removable.
They are supported by the surrounding soft and hard tissues in the mouth. There are many different denture designs but there are two basic types. The first is all acrylic of which a flexidenture is a more sophisticated version. The second uses a chrome-cobalt (metal) frame onto which the teeth are attached by a small amount of gum coloured acrylic. This second type is often the preferred choice in partial dentures, where some natural teeth remain as it is stronger and less bulky. It is also healthier for the remaining teeth for reasons your dentist will explain. Partial dentures are usually held in place using clasps or clips which are sometimes visible. Flexidentures have pink coloured clasps or clips. More sophisticated dentures can be fitted in combination with permanent crowns which incorporate special attachments, which allow the clasps to be hidden.
An overdenture is a complete denture that is partially supported by some remaining roots or implants. These roots or implants usually have some type of attachment that allows an insert placed in the denture to snap the overdenture in place. Overdentures are a very effective form of complete denture therapy and are far more stable than a normal complete denture.
If dental decay is left untreated it will eventually progress deep inside the tooth until it reaches the nerve. The nerve will become infected and, as long as there is enough tooth substance remaining, will require a root canal filling prior to any tooth reconstruction.
Another reason a tooth may need root canal therapy is if a tooth is subject to trauma causing fractures or cracks that pass through the nerve chamber. To help avoid this please protect your teeth with a mouthguard when playing contact sports or wear a nightguard if you grind/clench your teeth.
Where a root canal treatment is needed the damaged nerve is removed. The canal is cleaned and then filled with special material.
These treatments have a high success rate but it is important to understand that a small number do fail. Your dentist will review all root canal treatments (even old treatments) to make sure that the surrounding bone remains healthy.
A root-filled tooth usually needs a crown to prevent further breakage.
Under proper conditions and with diligent patient maintenance, implants can last a lifetime.
People lose teeth all the time, either through trauma (when teeth are knocked out) or due to decay, gum disease or severe wear and tear.
Whatever the reason for losing your teeth, they need to be replaced, both for aesthetic and functional reasons. The most common treatments for missing teeth are either a denture or a fixed bridge. However, dental implants are now becoming a more popular treatment option to replace missing teeth, as they provide a longer-term solution, slow down bone loss and preserve nearby healthy tooth tissue.
What is a Dental Implant?
A dental implant is an artificial tooth root. It is made of a specially coated titanium that a dentist places into your jaw to hold a replacement tooth or teeth bridge.
- Simple placement requires that enough depth and thickness of bone remains after the extraction area has healed. Your dentist will advise you if this is the case.
- While high-tech in nature, dental implants are actually more tooth-saving than traditional bridgework. Since implants do not rely on neighbouring teeth for support, there is no need to trim down or touch any of the teeth nearby.
The main system regularly used in this practice is Zimmer. We are familiar with other systems (for example NobelBiocare, Straumann) so can assist patients who have had other types of implants inserted elsewhere.
Dental implants are so natural-looking and feeling, you may forget you ever lost a tooth.
Do you hide your smile because of spaces from missing teeth ? Maybe your dentures don’t feel secure ? Perhaps you have difficulty chewing……….
If you are missing one or more teeth and would like to smile again, speak and eat again with comfort and confidence, there is good news !
- Dental implants are teeth that can look and feel just like your own.
- Dental implants are an ideal option if you have good general oral health and have lost a tooth or teeth due to gum disease, an injury or badly decayed/fractured tooth structure.
If you would like to find out more about implants, check out this website http://www.cosmeticdentistryguide.co.uk/implants
All types of minor oral surgery are performed in this practice.
Wisdom teeth are the last of your adult teeth to grow into the mouth. If they do so in the correct position they usually cause no problem.
However, lack of space often causes these teeth to grow in sideways, only partially grow out of the gum or even remain completely submerged. These problems can result in infections under the overlying gum, decay, and problems disrupting the course of your orthodontic treatment (braces). When these issues are identified, early removal is recommended.
Removal of your wisdom teeth is possible under both general and local anaesthetics. Your dentist will discuss and advise the most appropriate method.
The surgical removal of wisdom teeth is performed in the practice, other surgical procedures include surgical endodontic treatment (reverse root canal treatment). Surgery can also be performed in an attempt to stabilise gum disease that has failed to respond to the initial less invasive procedures.
Here at The Dental Practice, we have three dentists IAS trained in the use of ClearSmile. This treatment involves the use of sequential clear aligners (there are several similar systems in use worldwide). Also hand in hand with ClearSmile we also use Inman aligners, particularly on lower teeth. The photo shows upper ClearSmile and lower Inman aligners.
These systems offer a quicker (approximately 4 months) and more localised treatment (front teeth only) to adults who do not want to have conventional fixed braces as seen below.
Clear Ceramic Brackets or Metal Braces
For conventional fixed braces (normally younger teenagers) there are a number of Consultant Orthodontists working in our area.
During any fixed orthodontic treatment we advise regular hygiene visits as fixed brackets can be difficult to clean.
Clear ceramic brackets or the traditional metal braces are available.
Here at The Dental Practice, we offer different tooth whitening procedures, this allows us to meet all our patient’s needs.
Bleaching does not harm or weaken the tooth structure and is perfectly safe.
It is highly recommended that prior to any bleaching a consultation and a full mouth scale & polish is carried out.
Please book an appointment with any of our dentists. Bleaching is not suitable for everyone, your mouth will be assessed and you will be told if you are a good candidate. You will be able to discuss which procedure is most suitable for you during this appointment.
Tooth whitening uses hydrogen peroxide which gently penetrates the surface layer of the tooth ‘bleaching’ out any discoloration. However, temperature sensitivity is a common side effect lasting 24-48 hours after bleaching. This can be minimized by using desensitizing toothpaste – you can try Sensodyne Repair and Protect for a few days prior to and after bleaching. NOT rinsing with water after brushing will enhance the desensitizing effect.
It is highly recommended that during Home bleaching (Opalescence) and for 24 hours after in-clinic laser bleaching (Biolase Laserwhite 20), anything that may stain the teeth is avoided (e.g smoking, red wine, coffee, curry)
Failure to comply with this advice may result in premature staining of your newly bleached teeth !
Our quality assurance programme is regularly reviewed with all local dental board guidelines followed. Cross infection control, radiological working practices, equipment maintenance and renewals are just a few areas that we consider to be highly important in our practice.