Patient choice is important but first choices may not always be the most appropriate.
Let’s be honest, the Internet is great. At the press of a few keys we can find out about the smallest town in the remotest part part of the world that once would have taken weeks or months to research. Overall, this is great, but this instant information does not mean that professional advice can be ignored altogether.
Occasionally, we meet a patient who has spent some time researching ways of improving their teeth and then books an appointment at our Surbiton practice, armed with instructions of what they want us to do. Whilst we are always happy to help our patients to achieve their aims, a little investigation may indicate that their well researched path is not actually the most appropriate for them.
Let us take, for an example, a case where a patient came to us wanting to have their teeth straightened. Their research led them to choose the popular Invisalign system to straighten their teeth, based on the many benefits of this system, including comfort, discretion and also that they can be removed when eating, thereby offering a high level of convenience.
Invisalign would be an excellent first choice orthodontic for many reasons; however, in this particular patient’s case, their teeth were largely aligned correctly and the main “problem” was with some minor crookedness in their front teeth. Therefore, there was more concern about appearance than with any functionality problem.
Whilst Invisalign could be used to correct this problem, the method may not necessarily be the only choice. Invisalign can be used for minor and more complex issues but can take longer to work than some brace systems. So it is sensible to consider other solutions for this type of problem which can potentially produce faster results.
Six Month Smiles
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Cutting corners on dental implant placement could prove to be a bad mistake.
As reports in the newspapers seem to be indicating, money is starting to get a little tight for some people. Generally, when this happens, we look at ways to cut back our expenditure, perhaps buying less, or more likely, switching to cheaper brands.
Whilst this may work with some products, it is a risky strategy when it comes to dental care, and especially implant placement.
If you do a search for ‘dental implants’ even within your own area, you are likely to see a number of adverts offering ‘cheap implants abroad’ or similar. These can, at first glance, seem very tempting. After all, who would not want to pay less and have a few days in a hotel to recover too!
The financial incentive to go abroad for dental implant treatment is understandable, but is also probably the only plus factor. There are a significant number of risks in taking up these offers, and we look at a few of these below.
How qualified and experienced will the dentist be? – Whilst there are many talented dentists abroad, it can be difficult to ascertain whether the ones offering these cheaper implants have the level of expertise required to place implants safely and successfully. Different countries may have different standards and may not adhere to those that we are used to in the UK. In addition to this, even where the skills have been gained, experience can count for a lot. Some of these dental practices may be relatively new to implant placement, unlike the experienced implant dentists at our Surbiton practice.
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Cracked, chipped and badly stained teeth can look great again!
It is not unusual for a patient to come to our Surbiton practice, asking to have their teeth whitened. In most cases, following an examination of their teeth and general oral health, we are able to do this using a straightforward teeth whitening procedure.
To some other patients though, we may have to tell them that they would not really benefit sufficiently from this particular procedure. This usually applies to patients whose teeth are either very badly stained or are chipped or cracked.
All three of these problems means that a whitening procedure would likely be insufficient for their needs. In the case of badly stained teeth, perhaps those of a heavy ex smoker, there may be some improvement, but the results would probably not be as significant as they might expect. In the cases of chips or cracks, a whitening treatment would not touch these, and, indeed, may highlight these flaws even more.
Replacing the enamel
Once a patient’s teeth have suffered from this type of damage, the best and least invasive solution is to replace the surface enamel of the teeth with a porcelain veneer. This is an increasingly common and popular procedure for patients with this type of problem.
The procedure itself does involve removing a fine layer from the damaged front surface of the tooth which is done using a dental bur and is performed after a local anaesthetic has been administered. Once the teeth have been prepared in this way, impressions are taken of the teeth and sent to a dental laboratory for the manufacture of the veneers. This process usually takes a little over a week, and temporary veneers will be fitted to protect your teeth in the meantime.
Upon the return of your new veneers, we will remove the temporary ones and attach your new veneers before finally trimming and polishing them to give them a great looking and natural appearance.
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Oral health advice for very young children.
If you have recently had a baby, probably the last thing on your mind is how to look after their teeth; getting enough sleep is more likely to be a priority! Taking a little time to look after your young child’s teeth though, will pay dividends as they start to grow up and have strong healthy and attractive smile.
Our Surbiton dentist at Confidental Clinic, offers some thoughts below, on some simple things that you can do to look after your young child’s teeth.
Although it is important to clean a baby’s gums to prevent any problems; once their teeth start to appear, this should be replaced by regular brushing. This should be a soft brush with a small head. Initially, the use of water alone to brush is sufficient. Gradually though, very tiny amounts of a mild, fluoride toothpaste can be introduced, building up to a pea shaped amount as they develop.
Whilst you will initially have to brush their teeth for them; once capable, they should be encouraged to do this themselves so that they see this as a normal thing to do. You should supervise them whilst they do this though to make sure that they brush their teeth correctly, until such time that you are happy that they will do so themselves.
Pacifiers, thumbs and drinks
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If you are looking for ‘invisible’ braces in Surbiton, look no further!
Most people have heard of dental braces and the request to have teeth straightened is one of the most common that we hear from patients at the Confidental Clinic in Surbiton.
Whilst some patients do express concerns about the visibility of any braces that they may be required to wear, they are usually reassured by the range of near-invisible brace options that we offer at our practice.
This wide range of braces allows us to treat most types of misaligned and crooked teeth, and all of them offer a greater degree of discretion than conventional dental braces can. Of all the types on offer, it is Invisalign, one of our most popular orthodontic systems, that appeals to perhaps the largest number of patients, and for good reasons.
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Offering strength and stability, dental crowns provide a solution to a number of dental problems.
Dental crowns offer an excellent means of restoring a tooth and are used in a number of procedures. They can be made from a number of different materials, and, at the Confidental Clinic in Surbiton, we will assess and recommend the best type for you, depending on the type of procedure involved, and your own circumstances.
In today’s blog, we take a look at how dental crowns are used in the procedures available at our own practice.
The most common use for a dental crown is where a tooth has been badly broken, or a large amount has to be removed due to dental decay. Whilst in both cases it may be possible to offer a simple filling, this should be weighed up against how reliable and strong it would prove to be. In many cases, it is better to restore the tooth using a dental crown. This will provide the tooth with sufficient strength and hopefully minimise the need for further treatment should a filling not be strong enough to resolve the problem.
Root canal treatment is an effective way to save a tooth that has become infected; the only other alternative being to extract it. Because this procedure necessitates the removal of part of the top of the tooth in order to access the root canals, the restored tooth is, quite naturally, weakened significantly. The addition of a dental crown both completes the root treated tooth aesthetically and restores sufficient strength for daily use.
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Look after your gums for a healthy and attractive smile.
Most of us will have been told to clean our teeth when younger. Probably though, fewer will have been told to clean their gums as well. This is unfortunate as gum health is just as important as looking after our teeth and, if neglected, can even lead to tooth loss over time.
Gum disease is not uncommon, and can cause unpleasant symptoms such as sore or bleeding gums and bad breath. It is also relatively easily treated in its early stages but if allowed to develop, will start to damage the bone that holds our teeth in position. At this stage a more extensive treatment, a ‘deep clean’, will likely be needed. For some though, even this procedure may come too late and tooth loss may be unavoidable.
Ensuring that your gums are healthy is not especially difficult and just requires care and attention when cleaning your teeth and gums at home. This should include flossing if you do not already do so, combined with regular dental supervision and cleaning. An excellent way for our Surbiton patients to improve the health of their gums, and mouth in general, is to book an appointment with our dental hygienist. This is an ideal opportunity to discuss any oral health issues that you might have, and to learn more about how you can improve the way that you keep your teeth and gums clean.
In addition to this, the hygienist will offer a thorough clean which removes any hardened bacteria (also known as tartar), which often builds up in areas that patients find difficult to keep clean. With healthier gums, you increase the chances of keeping your own teeth for a very long time, possibly throughout your whole life.
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A simple procedure is all that it takes to give you younger looking skin.
Whatever the results of today’s elections, the one thing that we can all be certain of is that, tomorrow, we will wake up one day older.
Days turn into weeks and weeks into months until there comes a day when we take a look in the mirror and wonder exactly when those wrinkles first appeared on our face!
Age has a habit of creeping up on us without us realising it, but some of the effects of ageing can be reversed should we choose to do so. One of the most obvious physical signs of growing older are those telltale wrinkles that appear on our face. Here at the Confidental Clinic in Surbiton, we can help to reverse these.
Our Surbiton facial aesthetics team at the Confidental Clinic are fully trained and experienced and are here to help you to achieve the look that you want. Our procedures are safe and will produce natural looking results that will leave you with fewer facial wrinkles.
There are two main types of procedures available; anti wrinkle treatment and dermal fillers
Anti wrinkle treatment
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Our Surbiton dentists discuss how tooth sensation can indicate underlying problems.
As experienced cosmetic dentists, naturally we hear a lot from patients about how they would like their teeth to look. Some request whiter teeth, whilst others are more concerned about their crooked teeth and want them straightened as quickly as possible.
Equally though, the way our teeth feel is also important and may help us to know whether they are actually as healthy as they might look. Below, we take a look at some of the sensations that people experience with their teeth, along with potential causes.
Whilst patients will nearly always attend a local Surbiton dentists when they are in pain, some choose not to make an appointment where the discomfort is very minor. Even if you experience a level of discomfort that can be managed without painkillers, this is almost always a sign that something is wrong and should not be ignored. If you do not receive early treatment, you may end up with a severe toothache and in need of a more invasive dental procedure later on.
Some patients barely notice an uneven bite, whilst for others, the way that their teeth meet feels unusual and, whilst perhaps not uncomfortable, may feel unnatural. Although this sensation may not cause any pain, if you have an uneven bite the likelihood is that, over time, your teeth will wear down and the enamel become damaged. In some cases, an uneven bite may even cause a tooth to break. It is best to have this problem corrected using one of our wide range of braces available at the Confidental Clinic.
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What our Surbiton dentists look for during routine examinations.
During your regular six monthly dental examinations, our dentists will inspect for many things. Some of these are fairly obvious and include looking for signs of dental decay and gum disease. In addition to this, they also play an important front line role in the fight against oral cancers.
Although oral cancers may not have grabbed the attention of people in the way that breast and lung cancers have, there were over two thousand deaths from this in 2014 with many more people suffering from it in other ways. As with all cancers, the earlier it can be detected, the better the chance of effective treatment.
Increased oral cancer risks
A number of factors can increase the risk of oral cancer. The leading one of these is, unsurprisingly, smoking. Thankfully, most people are starting to realise the dangers of smoking tobacco products and have managed to stop altogether, or have switched to an alternative such as vaping.
Alcohol consumption can also contribute to oral cancer, especially if you are a regular drinker. There are other medical factors too which might raise the risk, including HPV. At the Confidental Clinic in Surbiton, we encourage those at a higher risk to take extra care of their oral health and, if recommended, see us more regularly to be extra vigilant.
Detection and symptoms
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