Are You Considering Dental Veneers?
Tuesday, June 30th, 2015
There are many ways that your teeth can become damaged over time, from chipping and wearing to staining and overall ageing. Few of us are born with a perfect Hollywood smile, and many people find that their imperfect teeth can lead to a general lack of confidence in their appearance and a reluctance to smile. If you are one of these people, then it may be time to consider dental veneers.
Veneers are the dental equivalent of false fingernails, using an overlay to cover up dental damage, staining, and general signs of wear. It is an effective method of teeth whitening for severely stained teeth without resorting to harsh chemical treatments, and it can also be used for teeth straightening in cases where your teeth are not too crooked and orthodontic braces are not an option.
Veneers are made out of porcelain, ceramic or a composite substance, shaped and coloured to match your existing healthy teeth, and cut into slivers as thin as an egg shell. These slivers are then permanently bonded to your teeth to undetectably cover up the unsightly damage or staining. Veneers can be used on a single tooth to quickly repair any localised damage, or on your whole smile to improve overall appearance and remedy excessive discolouration. They can also be used to fill in gaps by reshaping and enlarging your existing teeth, and also to fix mild cases of crookedness where conventional orthodontic treatment could take up to a year or more.
Dental veneers are resistant to staining from tea, coffee or even cigarette smoking meaning you can have a straight, white smile for many years.
The dental veneer procedure is a fairly complicated one and will require two visits to the clinic. You should be wary of dentists who are willing to perform the treatment quickly in one appointment. In the first appointment, your teeth are given a detailed check up to look for any underlying signs of trouble that might negatively impact the success of the veneers, and then a detailed mould of your teeth is made from which the final veneers will be fashioned. While your veneers are being made, which will take approximately a fortnight, you will be fitted with a temporary set which will give a good indication of the final results. Once the finished veneers have been received back from the ceramist, they can be permanently bonded to your teeth leaving you with the attractive smile you’ve been looking for.
Dental veneers are one of many cosmetic dentistry treatments. If you are unhappy with your smile, you should discuss with your dentist the various options available to find the one that is right for you. Brite Dental offer their patients a wide range of cosmetic dentistry treatments including Six Month Smiles and teeth whitening.
To find out more about how we can help you achieve your perfect smile, contact us today to make an appointment.
What To Do in a Dental Emergency
Monday, June 22nd, 2015
Tooth enamel is the strongest substance in the human body, however, it is not completely invincible. Through bad oral hygiene, accidental damage or hard foods, tooth enamel can become chipped, cracked, or in worse case scenarios, the tooth can be completely knocked out.
Enamel has no living cells so the body is unable to repair chipped or cracked teeth itself. This is why it is important that if you or someone in your family experiences a dental emergency you follow the right precautions in order to cause the least amount of damage and stress.
In this short blog on dental emergencies, we’ll answer the question of “what is a dental emergency” as well as listing some of the most common dental emergencies you may experience and how you should cope with them if they ever arise.
A dental emergency involves severe dental trauma or pain. Common examples of a dental emergency are:
Please remember that it’s critical for a dental emergency to be addressed as soon as possible in order to prevent long-term damage and more severe trauma from developing.
For patients experiencing a dental emergency, you can contact one of our surgeries directly or phone NHS 111 if the emergency happens out of hours.
Toothache is the pain you can experience in and around your jaw and teeth. Toothache can feel different and ranges from constant dull pain to shooting, more intense pain. It can also be caused by a number of different reasons, including sensitivity, tooth decay and gum disease.
If your toothache has lasted more than one or two days then you should make an emergency appointment to visit your dentist to have it checked and to find out its cause.
If your toothache is caused by dental decay and you leave it untreated then your tooth will become infected, leading to severe pain and in some cases, you will require root canal treatment to save the tooth from extraction.
To aid your toothache whilst you wait to see the dentist you can take painkillers, such as ibuprofen and paracetamol. You can also hold a cold compress to the outside of your cheek. You should not hold anything cold directly on your tooth as this can make the pain worse.
If you have chipped a part of your tooth and have managed to recover it, you should store the fragment in a clean container filled with your saliva or milk until you are able to visit a dentist.
Your dentist may be able to reattach the fragment back onto your tooth. You should also make sure to rinse your mouth out with warm water and apply pressure with a piece of gauze to the area if your mouth is bleeding.
If your dentist is unable to reattach your own tooth, they will replace it with a filling or crown depending on which tooth it is that is chipped. If the chip has occurred and broken half way down your tooth then you may have damaged the nerves. These instances can become very serious as damaged pulp can become infected.
If your tooth has been completely knocked out it is very important that you treat it with care – only handling it by the crown (white part at the top) and avoid touching the tooth’s root. If the tooth is dirty, you should avoid brushing or scraping it and instead rinse it with milk or saline (salt water) – not water or alcohol.
You should attempt to put the tooth back in the socket as soon as possible and once it is in place bite down on a clean piece of fabric such as a handkerchief to keep it in place.
If you are unable to place the tooth back in its socket you should keep it in a clean container filled with either your own saliva or milk until you are able to visit a dentist. Like a chipped tooth, you should also make sure to rinse your mouth out with warm water and apply pressure with a piece of gauze to the area if your mouth is bleeding.
This advice is only for adult teeth. If your child’s baby tooth falls out, you should not try and reinsert it as their adult teeth will grow in as a replacement.
What Else Could Your Bad Breath Mean?
Wednesday, June 17th, 2015
Bad breath has a number of causes, the most common being poor oral and dental hygiene. If you have a poor dental routine then bacteria will build up in your mouth which can result in plaque, tooth decay and gum disease. Brushing your teeth, flossing and cleaning your tongue will help you to remove these bacteria.
Bad breath may also be caused by your habits. Smoking and consuming strongly flavoured foods and drinks such as garlic, alcohol and coffee may cause bad breath. This type of bad breath is generally temporary and can be remedied with good dental care and regularly visiting your dentist.
You may also experience bad breath as a result of crash dieting. Dramatically altering the foods you consume, either by through a low-carbohydrate diet or fasting causes your body to break down fat, producing chemicals called ketones which smell.
Bad breath is an embarrassing problem to have but did you know that it could also be a sign of other health issues? Halitosis has been found to be a sign of a number of health problems including: stomach cancer, lung cancer, kidney failure, diabetes and gum disease. Your mouth is a gateway to the rest of your body and any problems you are experiencing there may be an indication of a more serious problem. If you have noticed any change in your oral health you should make an appointment to visit your dentist who will be able to advise you.
You can prevent or reduce your bad breath by following a number of steps:
If you are concerned about your dental health the contact the Brite Dental team. Our clinical care team is here to look after you and your dental health needs. We have practices in four locations and offer both NHS and cosmetic dentistry treatments.
Your Dental Health During Pregnancy
Thursday, June 11th, 2015
Pregnancy can lead to dental problems in women, including an increased risk of tooth decay and an increased chance of developing gingivitis (gum disease). These problems can in turn affect your delivery, with studies showing that as many as 18 out of every 100 premature births may be triggered by gum disease.
It is always important to take proper care of your teeth and gums. However, if you are pregnant it is even more essential that you do all you can to avoid gum disease and other dental problems. Your baby’s teeth and mouth start to develop in the first weeks of pregnancy so by taking good care of your own oral health you will, in turn, help support the correct development of your baby’s dental health.
You may find that your experience unusual food cravings (or avoidance) during your pregnancy. It may also be the case that you have increased cravings for sugary foods. Snacking on sugary foods too often is bad for your teeth and can lead to an increased chance of tooth decay. You should try to snack on low-sugar alternatives where possible. However if you are finding it difficult to avoid your cravings then you should always rinse your mouth out with milk or water after consuming sugary food and drinks to stop plaque building up on your teeth.
During your pregnancy you will need an increased amount of certain vitamins. Calcium in particular is important not only to help your developing baby but also to protect your own bone mass. Vitamin D is important as well as it help the body utilise calcium. You can find calcium in yoghurt, milk and cheese and Vitamin D in eggs, fatty fish including salmon and margarine. During your pregnancy you should look to increase the amounts of these foods you are consuming.
During your pregnancy your body will have increased hormone levels which can make your gums more vulnerable to plaque. In fact, 40% of women will develop gum disease as some point in their pregnancy.
Research has also indicated a connection between gum disease and premature births and low birth weight. If your baby is born prematurely they could have problems with their hearing and eyesight and are at risk of health conditions such as cerebral palsy. If you experience soreness, swelling, pregnancy tumours (growths between your teeth) or bleeding gums you may be showing the first signs of gum disease It is imperative that if you experience any of these symptoms that you visit your dentist.
It is often the case that hormones produced during pregnancy will soften the ring of muscle that keeps your food inside your stomach. As a result, you may experience morning sickness or gastric reflux during your pregnancy which will lead to your teeth becoming coated with stomach acids. If this happens repeatedly during your pregnancy you can damage your tooth enamel which can lead to an increased chance of tooth decay. If tooth decay is left untreated you may require root canal treatment.
To ensure your teeth are not affected by morning sickness you should rinse your mouth out thoroughly with tap water and follow up with a fluoridated mouthwash. Whilst it will be tempting to brush your teeth straight away you should try and wait at least an hour as your stomach acids weaken your teeth and brushing straight away can damage your teeth.
It may also be the case that brushing your teeth is affecting your gag reflex. If you are experiencing this problem then you can try using a toothbrush with a smaller head, try distractions whilst brushing including listening to music, or simply slowing down your brushing action.
Pregnancy can be a difficult time for your health in a variety of ways. If you are trying to become pregnant then you should consider your current dental hygiene routine. You are less likely to develop dental problems during your pregnancy if you already maintain a good oral hygiene routine. Correct dental treatment during pregnancy was found in one study to reduce the risk of premature birth by over 80 percent.
Dental care is provided for free by the NHS during your pregnancy and for one year after your due date. You simply need to fill out a FW8 form to apply for a maternity exemption certificate (MatEx). To find out more you can contact Brite Dental NHS Dentist and Cosmetic Dentistry in Scotland.