Our Clapham dentists look at the damage that can be done through following incorrect advice.
You will, no doubt, be familiar with the term ‘fake news’ that has been bandied around the media for some time. Although this is largely connected to politics, there is plenty of fake news, especially on social media, that can be seriously harmful to your teeth.
One of the most pernicious methods used in this way are ‘click bait’ articles. These are designed solely to attract you to a web page, usually for advertising purposes. An example might be ‘whiten your teeth with this natural treatment that dentists don’t want you to know about’. Little is usually thought about the consequences if someone actually follows the advice.
Although it is impossible to cover all of these, the following are three of the most common types that we have seen.
This is almost certainly the most common one that you will see. According to these articles, you can whiten your teeth using lemon juice, household bleach and even mashed strawberries! Whilst some of these are just plain ridiculous, others are quite serious, potentially causing significant damage and pain to anyone who tries it. Most teeth whitening click bait articles involve the use of some form of bleaching agent, whether a household bleach or lemon juice. The use of household bleach is downright dangerous, for very obvious reasons, but even a natural ingredient like lemon juice can strip the enamel from your teeth, leading to sensitivity and increased vulnerability to decay and root canal infection.
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If you have persistently bad breath, you need to see a dentist.
Anybody who has had a conversation with a person with halitosis will know how deeply unpleasant it can be. There is a world of difference between someone with ‘garlic breath’ and someone who has deeper seated breath issues.
Whilst it is true that avoiding certain foods, garlic being the most well known example, will help, the reality is that this type of bad breath is temporary and will revert to normal if you avoid eating them for a while. More persistent and foul smelling breath however, is likely to have oral health issues as the root cause.
Oral health and your breath
There are two key dental issues which can cause you to have bad breath. Dental decay is one of these, though more often, this will leave a bad taste in your mouth rather than causing overly strong bad breath. Most people that see their dentist regularly should not suffer from this, and we are always available for emergency dental appointments should you suffer from toothache caused by decay in between your check ups.
A more likely cause of halitosis, or persistent bad breath, is gum disease. Unfortunately, whilst most people will brush their teeth, too many of us neglect the health of our gums, and, consequently, may suffer from gingivitis or worse, periodontitis.
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Creating a great looking smile for our Clapham patients!
Some cosmetic dental procedures require a certain level of commitment, either in time or in the undergoing of a fairly invasive procedure. However, in today’s blog, we thought that we would take a look at some of the treatments we offer at the Confidental Clinic, which are relatively swift or require minor intervention only.
This is one of the most popular cosmetic treatments for our Clapham patients and we offer a home teeth whitening solution which is both effective, comfortable and convenient. Your teeth can be up to eight shades whiter in just the space of a couple of weeks or so.
Teeth that are attractive and white, apart from small chips or cracks can be restored using dental bonding. This is a resin, produced in a colour to match your own teeth which is applied, shaped and then hardened using a UV light. This is an entirely non invasive procedure.
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Maintaining good oral care is important, especially in our later years.
A healthy mouth can make a big different to our lives. As well as allowing us to eat a wide range of foods easily, nice looking teeth can play an important role in social interaction and have a positive effect on many areas of our life.
These things are important to us when we are younger, but, as we get older, social lives tend to be less extensive and some are perhaps less concerned with their appearance. A combination of these factors may cause us to not look after out teeth as well as we may have previously done.
Elderly patient care
At the Confidental Clinic in Clapham, we try to ensure that our older patients are both aware of the importance of good oral health care, along with having regular dental inspections. Whilst six monthly checks are normal for most people, we may suggest that older patients see us more frequently, as some oral health problems, such as gum disease, occur more easily in the elderly.
For those who are responsible for the care of older patients, you will pleased to know that all of our staff receive training on treating vulnerable adult patients and and are DBS checked.
Older patient problems
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Just a few small changes in the way you look after your teeth can have huge benefits
Although modern dental care offers numerous ways to restore damaged or infected teeth, sometimes it is worth taking a look at our daily habits to see if there are ways that we can help to prevent problems from occurring in the first place.
Our dental team at the Confidental Clinic have put together a few tips that our Clapham patients can apply to their daily lives, which really can help to keep their teeth and gums in good condition. Most of these are simple everyday things that can make a significant difference.
How do you brush your teeth? – Many people simple pick up their toothbrush, apply the toothpaste and then start brushing relatively randomly. This is not the most effective way to brush your teeth and may even cause wear to the enamel. You should make sure that your brush is no more than three months old and a toothpaste containing fluoride should be used. The bristles should be angled slightly towards the gums in order to remove debris and bacteria from just under the gum line, and gentle circular brushing should be performed for around two minutes. When you have finished, simply spit, but do not rinse the mouth with water, to allow the fluoride in the toothpaste more time to work.
Floss – We know that we have mentioned this before, but adding flossing to your daily regime makes a real difference. It removes both food and ‘bad’ bacteria from the spaces between your teeth and helps to reduce the risk of gingivitis and periodontitis. If you find flossing difficult, please speak to the dentist or hygienist about it who will be able to demonstrate it for you.
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Both men and women can benefit from a teeth whitening procedure at our Clapham practice.
Whilst the majority of people who have a teeth whitening procedure at the Confidental Clinic are female, we are seeing an increasing number of men wishing to have it done too.
A lot of marketing in this area appears to be aimed at women, as can be seen from the whitening toothpaste advertisements on TV, so, in today’s blog, we thought we would look at how men too, can benefit from this popular treatment.
You don’t have to go back too far to find a time where many men would have yellow teeth, probably from their early twenties, from smoking. At one time, it would be quite unusual to find a man that didn’t smoke. Naturally, as they became older, their teeth would become heavily stained with tar, often appearing quite yellow. Whilst this may not have been worn as a badge of pride exactly, few people were really concerned about how their teeth looked.
Perhaps things slowly started to change with the introduction of ‘youth culture’. As advertisers realised that there was a new market there, and men became aware of the opportunities available to them, new products started to appear on the market. Some of these enabled men to improve their appearance, something especially important to those in their teenage years and early twenties. Whilst, initially, there may have been a feeling that some of this was a little ‘effeminate’, times change and you would probably find it difficult now, to find many men who don’t use at least some form of male grooming product.
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Our Clapham dental team explain why it is not just tooth decay that should be avoided.
The chances are that if you asked ten people on the street what the main cause of tooth loss is, probably around nine of them would say tooth decay.
This is understandable as we are often told, as children, that sweets will ‘rot our teeth’. Decay is probably all too familiar for some of us who may have experienced painful toothache at some point in our lives!
Whilst dental decay is a serious matter and can cause both pain and damage to the teeth, even needing extraction where the tooth can no longer be saved; there is another issue which is responsible for more tooth loss than even tooth decay, and that is gum disease.
The most common, and probably best known, of gum health problems is gingivitis. Whilst once almost unacknowledged by the general public, toothpaste manufacturers now target this with new products aimed at reducing gum disease. These toothpastes can certainly help, but only if used as part of an overall gum health care programme, including regular hygienist visits. Gingivitis can be uncomfortable, with symptoms such as sore or bleeding gums, but, if treated early enough, is reversible and should cause little long term damage.
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Explaining how we remove a tooth at our Clapham dental practice.
Whilst preventing dental problems is naturally better than having to treat them, there are now many procedures that are available to save a tooth when decay, or other problems, have occurred. From a minor dental filling through to root canal treatment, our dentists will do all that is practical to save a patient’s natural teeth.
Sometimes though, this may no longer be possible and a long standing troublesome tooth, or one that has received sudden damage, may have to be extracted. Many patients still believe that we actually ‘pull’ out the tooth. The procedure, however, is a little more involved.
X-rays and examination
When a patient attends our Clapham practice, either with a long term problem with a tooth, or an emergency dental appointment for something that has just happened, we will examine the tooth closely, likely taking x-rays to determine the nature of the problem. Where no alternatives are available, or where the prognosis is very poor, we may extract the tooth. This procedure will always be performed using a local anaesthetic and will take place at the Confidental Clinic except for where there may be complications, such as can occur with wisdom teeth, for example. These procedures may be carried out in hospital or by referral to a specialist.
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Safety aspects of anti-wrinkle treatments and dermal fillers at our Clapham dental practice.
To anyone who has successfully had the lines and wrinkles on their faces treated using either Botox or dermal fillers, the idea of undergoing facial aesthetic treatment is no big deal. For many others though, who may be considering it but have not yet taken the first step, the thought may be quite worrying.
Unfortunately, for many people, their only encounter with cosmetic facial treatments has been through some of the more scaremongering stories in the daily tabloids. Usually this involves celebrities whose procedures have gone badly wrong. Understandably, given that this has been their only exposure, it can make some people think twice about having it done themselves.
Celebrity beauty gone wrong
Let us first take a look at why some of these procedures may have gone wrong. There are two likely possibilities. Firstly, in the case of some celebrities, it’s the search for perfection. Where money is not an issue, some people may push to have as perfect an appearance as is possible. Even if we do not agree with what defines ‘perfection’, the reality is that, with money, it is usually possible to find someone who will push these procedures to the limit.
The desire for full lips, for example, may result in the now infamous ‘trout pout’. Related to this issue is the fact that many professional facial clinics refuse to perform more ‘extreme’ treatments, thus forcing the customer to seek out less ethical clinicians who may lack the necessary skills or experience to perform an appropriate procedure.
In safe hands
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Our Clapham cosmetic dentist discusses how we can help people who have worn down teeth.
The older we get, the more the daily wear and tear of our lives takes a toll on our teeth. Some of this may be purely cosmetic, such as the fact that our teeth darken with age; sometimes though, a more noticeable impact can be seen when our teeth start to gradually wear down.
Causes of wear
There can be a number of factors which can cause our teeth to wear down in different ways.
Bruxism – This is where the teeth grind together, often during stressful periods and very often whilst we sleep. This can be very difficult to control, and, although there are solutions available to restore damage caused by this, which we will discuss later, it is best to wait until you no longer grind your teeth before attempting a permanent solution.
Poor diet – Too many of us still have a diet that is relatively high in sugar. As we know, this contributes to attacks on the enamel of the tooth, weakening it. One particular problem that affects many of us is the rise in consumption of both sugary fizzy drinks and high sugar ‘energy’ drinks. Both of these have been shown to contribute to erosion of the surface enamel of the teeth, exposing the dentin layer underneath.
Excessive brushing – Yes, even doing your best to look after your teeth can have its pitfalls. Excessive pressure placed when brushing your teeth can cause the enamel to wear away. Make sure to brush gently. There is no need to ‘scrub’.
Solutions for worn teeth
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