The Ageing Effects Of Smoking

How smoking affects your facial features and your teeth, prematurely aging you.

We have covered in a previous blog post, the dangers to oral health caused by smoking, with the increased risk of oral cancers and advanced gum disease.

Although these issue do, quite rightly, grab the headlines, there is another issue which long term smokers have to face, and that is the way that it affects their appearance.

Although it may once have been ‘cool’ to smoke, and there is little doubt that in earlier times, the sight of Bogart and Bacall smoking could be classed as ‘alluring’, few would argue that to be the case these days. With a heightened awareness of the damage that smoking causes, more and more people are attempting to stop.

At the Confidental Clinic in Clapham, we see the effects on oral health of smokers on a daily basis. Our facial aesthetics team also see the effect that it has on the patient’s appearance in general.

‘Ugly’ teeth

We don’t really like to use the term ‘ugly’, but it is often an appropriate term where someone has smoked for a long period of time. From a dental perspective, there are a number of visual symptoms which can cause a smoker to have an unattractive smile.

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Receding Gums – The Causes And The Risks

stages of gum disease

Helping our Clapham patients to maintain healthy gums.

Gum recession not only detracts from an otherwise attractive smile, but can create other problems too. In today’s blog, we take a look at why some people’s gum recede, how to prevent it, and the problems that can occur if we don’t.

Natural causes

It should be said that gums are likely to recede, to some degree, as we grow older. This is simply one of those unfortunate facts of life, like wrinkles, that we would rather avoid. Most of us would probably agree though, that we would rather our gums not recede until we are in the later years of our life and avoid it completely if at all possible.

Other causes

Medical – There are a number of potential medical reasons for your gums to recede. These include hormonal changes, such as during pregnancy, and other medical conditions where the immune system is affected, making it less able to fight bacterial infections. Some medications may also cause gums to recede as a side effect. If your medication has this listed and you are concerned, please consult your GP before stopping any medication.

Gum disease – This is one of the most common reasons for gum recession that we see here at the Confidental Clinic in Clapham. Both gingivitis and the more advanced periodontitis, will cause this to happen over time. In addition to improving your home oral health regimen, we strongly advise that you see our helpful dental hygienist on a regular basis for professional cleaning (also known as a scale and polish).

Incorrect brushing – In their desire to have clean teeth, some patients are prone to use excessive force when brushing. This can have the effect of wearing away the gums and, at the same time, causing enamel damage which increases the risk of tooth decay. A gentle circular motion with a relatively new toothbrush is all that is needed and our hygienists will show you the correct techniques.

The problems

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Addressing Thinning Lips And Other Signs Of Ageing

Safe and effective facial aesthetics at our Clapham dental practice.

If you hadn’t visited a dental practice in the UK for a number of years, you might be surprised to notice that some, including ourselves, now also offer facial aesthetics as well as both general and cosmetic dentistry. On the surface, this may initially seem a little strange but actually fits in well with our approach of helping patients achieve the look that they wish for.

The clean and hygienic environment of a dental practice also makes this an ideal safe space for these treatments to be carried out with minimal risk of infections for the patient.

Dedicated teams

At the Confidental Clinic in Clapham, we have a dedicated team who are trained to carry out facial aesthetics procedures such as anti wrinkle treatments and dermal fillers. Of these, the anti wrinkle treatments, such as Botox, are perhaps the most well known. However, in this blog, we will take a look at how dermal fillers, a slightly less well known option, can be used to give you a more youthful appearance too.

Reversing ageing signs

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Preparing For Your Cosmetic Dentistry in Clapham

Making sure your mouth is healthy for a positive outcome.

At the Confidental Clinic in Clapham, we offer a wide range of cosmetic dental procedures to help patients realise a great new smile. Before a cosmetic procedure takes place though, it is important to make sure that your mouth is as healthy as it can be.

By ensuring that problems such as decay and gum disease are not present, we are able to minimise the risk of the dentistry failing, saving you both disappointment and money.

General cosmetic procedures

Whether you are thinking of having a straightforward teeth whitening treatment or something a little more complex, such as dental veneers, it makes sense to make sure that your mouth is as healthy as possible first. There is little sense in spending good money on teeth that may need to be filled or worse, are on the way to being lost completely. For example, in the case of dental veneers, if the underlying tooth becomes decayed, this is likely to weaken the bond with the veneer and failure can result. In cases where the decay is significant, the shape of the tooth may be changed so radically that the veneer no longer fits the tooth at all and other restorative procedures need to be considered.

We’ve possibly all seen cases in the media where patients have had cosmetic dentistry failures simply because their own dentist had not addressed the health of their mouth before commencing?

This can be avoided by ensuring that your teeth and gums are as healthy as they can be. With good aftercare, your new cosmetic treatments should be effective for the maximum time possible.

Dental implants

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Dentures – Still a Popular Solution For Missing Teeth

Why dentures are still one of the most common tooth replacement methods.

Whilst we are firm believers that dental implants are currently the best option for replacing a missing tooth, the reality is that not everybody follows that particular route.

Whilst most of our Clapham patients would accept that  dental implants are the strongest and easiest to use solution, for some, the cost, or simply the invasive nature of the procedure, deters them from having them placed.

Although we do offer help for nervous dental patients at the Confidental Clinic, the fact is that the use of modern partial dentures does offer a means of having a replacement tooth without the need for invasive procedures.

Modern dentures

The good news for potential denture wearers is that modern dentures are more comfortable and natural looking than their predecessors. Whilst they may not offer the strength and stability of a dental implant, they do offer an acceptable compromise without the need for dental surgery. Most modern dentures are made from acrylic and these are the most commonly used. The replacement tooth is made in a shade to match that of your natural teeth to create a realistic looking smile. Small metal clasps are also used which attach to adjacent teeth to help to improve stability.

Especially where more than one adjoining tooth needs to be replaced, patients of the Confidental Clinic might wish to consider the flexible Valplast dentures that we have available at our Clapham practice. These offer a heightened degree of comfort and will flex with the mouth, making them feel more natural than traditional dentures.

Denture care

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Zygomatic Dental Implants For Complex Cases

Avoiding the need for bone grafts or sinus lifts prior to implant placement.

Whilst most patients who opt for dental implants are able to have this procedure without the need for a bone graft or sinus lift, some patients, unfortunately, are not. This can be due to a number of reasons with the prime one being loss of bone in the jaw, especially where a tooth has been missing for some time.

As the strength and long life of a dental implant depends, to a large degree, on the quantity and quality of the bone structure, it is usually necessary, in these cases, to perform a bone graft or a sinus lift in order for there to be a firm foundation for the implant to be placed.

Zygomatic dental implants

At the Confidental Clinic in Clapham, we offer our patients the option of zygomatic dental implants. These differ from regular implants in that they are longer, and, instead of being placed at the usual ninety degrees into the bone structure, they are placed at an  angle into the cheekbone (also known as the zygomatic arch) and use this area to provide the necessary bone structure to secure the implant in place.

Naturally, prior to any procedure, all options will be investigated, and scans taken of your jaw. This is essential to determine whether you can have regular implants or require zygomatic ones. It is also an essential part of the procedure if zygomatic implants are needed as it enables us to determine the exact position in which the implants need to be placed.

Instant replacement teeth

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Are There Side Effects To A Teeth Whitening Procedure?

Safe and effective cosmetic dental treatments at our Clapham practice.

The teeth whitening procedure is one of the most well known and popular cosmetic dental procedures currently available. All of us will have seen the result of this treatment when we see Hollywood ‘stars’ with perfect white teeth.

Unsurprisingly then, many people have visited the Confidental Clinic to have their own teeth whitened, greatly improving the appearance of their smiles.

Despite it being a non-invasive procedure, a few patients have expressed concerns about whether there are any risks attached to a whitening procedure; something that our experienced Clapham dentists discusses below.

The procedure

To quickly recap; the whitening procedure offered by the Confidental Clinic is a personalised home whitening one which involves making trays to fit each patient individually. The whitening agent is placed into these and they are then worn for a few hours a day for a few weeks, until the whiteness you want has been achieved.

The first thing that we should say is that the biggest risk with this procedure is to choose to have it done by a non professional. High street whitening outlets were once commonplace but are now illegal. Only registered dental personnel can perform this procedure. A number of non professionals have been prosecuted for offering this treatment, very often in an uncontrolled and harmful manner. Please make sure that you do not take this risk!

Your health

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The Dental Hygienist – Healthier Gums The Easy Way

stages of gum disease

How our Clapham dental hygienist helps to prevent gum disease.

As we have mentioned in previous Confidental Clinic blogs, gum disease is responsible for more tooth loss than decay, yet, despite this, most people take less care of their gums than their teeth. Whilst regular brushing will help to look after the teeth, it is less effective at removing harmful bacteria from between the teeth and the gum line.

Additional techniques such as flossing, or inter-dental cleaning with a special brush, greatly improve the chances of removing this ‘bad’ bacteria, and yet, only around 20% of us floss and many that do, often do so incorrectly.

Hygienist appointments

Even if someone takes really good care of their teeth and gums, there are still areas where bacteria can collect which make it almost impossible to remove with home cleaning. Visiting our Clapham dental hygienist, Lauren Bennet, should be seen as more than an ‘extra’ and, instead, an essential part of keeping your gums healthy.

There are a number of ways in which these visits are important for good oral health.

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Partial Dentures – Non-invasive Teeth Replacement

Our Clapham dentist takes a look at this commonly used tooth replacement method.

Here at Confidental Clinic in Clapham, when a patient loses a tooth, either because of decay or due to an accident, we will always advise that they replace it with one of the restoration procedures that we offer.

If you lose a tooth or teeth, and they aren’t replaced, then after time the surrounding teeth can move to fill the gap left. Missing teeth can also cause problems with your bite.

A partial denture

We offer a range of procedures designed to help our patients that have suffered tooth loss. Not all of the treatments are suitable for everyone, and some whilst offering excellent results can be quite time consuming to complete, and very often they require quite invasive treatment or surgery. If you are looking for a means of replacing a missing tooth or teeth, without undergoing complicated and invasive dental surgery, then a partial denture may just be the treatment that you are looking for.

The modern denture is designed to be far more natural looking, helping to blend in well with your remaining teeth. They are comfortable to wear, less prone to breakages and far more easy to maintain than dentures may traditionally have been.

Types or partial denture that we offer include:


An acrylic denture is the most cost effective type that we offer. It consists of a gum-coloured plate that is moulded to fit over your gum, with the teeth attached. The teeth are carefully made to cosmetically match with your existing teeth, helping the denture to look as natural as possible.

Cobalt chrome

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Lower Cost Dental Implants Abroad – Is It Worth the Risk?

Looking at the pros and cons of travelling overseas to have dental implants placed.

If you are considering undergoing a dental implant procedure, then you may possibly have been tempted to travel abroad for your treatment. Maybe you’ve seeing adverts either on-line or in newspapers, from practices and agencies, attempting to lure people with the offer of cut-price dental implant procedures in far off lands?

Some factors to consider

Here at the Confidental Clinic in Clapham, we would strongly recommend to anyone who is considering travelling abroad for dental treatment, that they fully research both the clinic, and the country in which the clinic is based. Particularly checking the country’s regulatory body, and the levels of treatment and care that it enforces. We also recommend that you should check the dentist’s qualifications, and their personal experience in carrying out the procedure.

Having a dental implant is a complex procedure that requires excellent communication between both parties. This is something that may prove difficult if English is not the first language of either the dentist or his assistants.

There are implants, and then there are implants!

We would recommend that you determine the type and quality of the implant that will be used, prior to agreeing to any aspect of your treatment.

Here at Confidental Clinic we will only ever use quality implants that are manufactured to the highest standards, by companies that have become established names in the field of implant dentistry. There are cheaper implants available, though these are often without the quality and reliability that our implants offer. It is usually these cheaper, so called ‘copy’ implants that are used in clinics that offer cheaper procedures.

Consultation and aftercare

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