How Cygnet Dental Uses Veneers To Restore Damaged Teeth

Versatile porcelain veneers used to repair stained and chipped teeth.

great smileAs we slowly come out of a period of lockdown and gradually return to something like normal, many of us will be looking at the best ways to get our lives fully back on track. Although problems like the economy can only be addressed by government policies and initiatives, there are areas of our own lives that we can take responsibility for and put a plan of action into place to change things for the better.

Several of us may have put on weight through lack of exercise and poor diet whilst others may have started drinking more than usual or even started smoking again. For those concerned about their general appearance, there may also be some concern about the way their teeth are currently looking as well.

Staining and chipped teeth

As it hasn’t been possible to see a dentist for a few months until very recently, it is no surprise that many dentists are currently busy treating those most in need due to decay and broken teeth. These cases take priority to prevent any further pain and damage.

Those of you who regularly use our Wickford cosmetic dental services may also be looking forward to making an appointment again to restore the whiteness of your teeth. If you have previously done this on a recurring basis, you will probably have noticed your teeth are more discoloured than would normally be the case when regular maintenance was in place. In many cases, this can be simply be addressed with a teeth whitening procedure, although where staining has become more severe, other options may also need to be considered.

Whilst the team at the Cygnet Dental Practice will always use the least invasive treatment where possible, a simple whitening procedure may only have a limited effect where teeth that have become badly stained. This limited improvement may be enough for some, but anyone looking for a really attractive white smile may wish to consider dental veneers instead.

Veneers may also provide a solution for anyone who has chipped or cracked a tooth as they can be used for both aesthetic and restorative purposes.

Pros and cons

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Looking Forward To A Smoke Free Future

Addressing habits which compromise your oral health

Wickford Principal Dentist Dr PabariThe last few months have been difficult for most of us in one way or another. Whether you were unable to work and are worried about your finances, missed the social interaction of friends and family or simply found that your anxiety levels were raised due to concern about the effect of the virus on yourself and those around you, no doubt you will be relieved that the number of infections is slowly decreasing.

As we start to return to some sort of ‘normality’; it is worth sitting down and looking at habits that possibly became more pronounced during lockdown and which are harmful to both general and oral health.

At the Cygnet Dental Practice in Wickford, we believe in an all round approach to good oral care. This includes helping patients to take preventative measures as well as treating existing problems. In today’s blog we take a look at smoking which, as well as being well known to contribute to lung and heart disease, can also have a devastating effect on our oral health.

Smoking and mouth cancer

The most serious of oral infections that smoking plays a major role in is undoubtedly oral cancer. This can affect any of the soft tissue of the mouth, head and neck areas.  It can manifest in a number of symptoms including:

  • Sore or red patches in the mouth
  • White patches of the soft tissue
  • Loose teeth
  • Formation of lumps or bumps on the soft tissues
  • Difficulty in swallowing

When you attend our Wickford practice for your six monthly checkup, we make sure to look for any of these, or other unusual symptoms. We are not qualified to determine if these symptoms are due to cancer, and could indeed be caused by other factors. As it is important that any signs such as these are investigated thoroughly, we may refer you to your GP. If we do this, please remember that this is a precautionary approach and does not necessarily mean that we have detected that you have cancer. This will need to be further investigated by your GP or any specialist they refer you to.

Smoking and gum disease

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Ensuring A Safe Re-Opening Of Our Wickford Dental Practice

What to expect when Cygnet Dental opens again for business

Cygnet Dental Wickford LogoAs you will probably know, dental practices were given the go ahead to open on Monday. This is good news but unfortunately dentists were only advised at the same time as the general public, leaving us very little time to finalise our re-opening plans.

We are doing all that we can to open as soon as possible but we will not do so until we are satisfied that new procedures and protection are in place for both staff and patients.

We are still evaluating the guidance that has been provided and taking steps to put new procedures into place. In today’s blog, we explain some of the things that we are looking at and at some of the differences that patients may well see when we open. Naturally, we will advise when we are opening and this will be as soon as we can.

PPE

PPE, or ‘personal protective equipment’ is essential to ensure that treatments can be carried out safely. Anyone who has kept up to date with the news though will be aware that worldwide demand for this means that it is very difficult to source at the moment. We continue to do our best to source the clothing and equipment needed so that we can see our patients once again.

Appointments

Currently, we are still offering a telephone service for patients who have a dental emergency. Where the problem is urgent, you may be referred to an urgent dental centre. For more routine problems, we will offer advice on how to manage it until it can be treated. We may also provide antibiotics where appropriate. Once we reopen, we will be contacting patients as quickly as we can. We do ask that patients understand that we will be prioritising those who are in need of prompt treatment or are in pain. Those who were mid way through a treatment will be contacted early too.

Our intention is to treat these patients as priority and then see others for more routine appointments. As it is likely that the number of patients we can see each day will be restricted, we ask that you really do make sure to clean and floss your teeth well each day. If you have a problem such as a broken tooth or have lost a filling, please try to avoid using that particular tooth when eating. This will help to prevent further damage until you can come in to see us.

Treatments

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Malocclusion – What Is It And What Problems Can It Cause?

How an uneven bite can create dental problems over a period of time.

Brace straightening teethHave you ever seen a celebrity or TV personality who seems to have perfect teeth and thought how lucky they are? If so, it is worth remembering that most may well have had cosmetic dental treatment in order for their teeth to look that way.

Likely treatments include teeth whitening and possibly even veneers. Less obvious, but equally important for a great, healthy smile are straight teeth and this may also have required orthodontic (braces) treatment.

Whilst some of us may have crooked teeth that are not the most attractive to look at, there are likely more of us who have an uneven bite. In some people this may be barely noticeable, whilst in others more pronounced.

Whilst orthodontic appliances are perhaps best known for creating even and attractive smiles, they also have an important role in correcting a malocclusion, or ‘bad bite’.

What is a “bad” bite?

A bad or uneven bite is when our teeth don’t meet evenly as they should do. This means that additional force is applied to areas of our teeth when we chew and break down our food as we eat. In some people, an incorrect bite might be obvious, but even a small malocclusion can cause problems for our teeth. Although visual problems such as an under or overbite are the most obvious issues because they can be quite visible, longer term damage to our teeth can also occur. Possible problems include:

Broken teeth – This is one of the more dramatic things that can happen, especially where the bad bite is particularly significant. Over time, the additional force applied to the affected area of the tooth is likely to cause it to weaken and it may eventually break.

Enamel wear – Especially where front teeth overlap, there is a good chance that there will be gradual enamel wear on the surface of the teeth. Not only does this increase the risk of tooth decay but it is likely to cause the teeth to become sensitive and affected by both hot and cold temperatures. It may also cause the structure of the tooth to weaken and cause the teeth to become chipped or cracked.

Jaw problems – Another issue that can arise with an uneven bite, especially when it happens over a long period of time, is that additional strain can be placed upon the ‘hinges’ of the jaw. This can lead to jaw problems such as TMJ (temporomandibular jaw) disorder. This can cause quite a bit of discomfort for sufferers and clicking or popping sensations are not uncommon, with some also experiencing discomfort not only in the jaw, but also the neck and head areas.

Correcting malocclusion issues

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Anxiety And Stress – Their Effect On Your Teeth And Gums

Stress associated with the Covid-19 crisis may have left some patients with a less healthy mouth.

Concerned womanMany of us are probably watching the news on a daily, or even hourly basis, to see what changes there are to the current advice about ‘lockdown’. It does appear that some measures are going to be eased early next week which is being heralded as good news by some.

On closer inspection though, these measures, if adhered to correctly, are relatively minor and the reality is that we will probably be in a reasonably strict lockdown situation for a number of weeks yet. But we wait to see.

Any safe advance that can be made to give us more freedom is to be welcomed, as long as it doesn’t cause setbacks. Many patients of our local Wickford dentists will be struggling with the current situation and, in some cases, the levels of stress and anxiety have probably become quite high.

Aside from any general health issues that this might cause, it is a fact that undue stress and anxiety can have a negative affect on our teeth and our gums. Our Cygnet Dental Practice team explains more below.

Bruxism

When under stress, many of us clench our jaws and grind our teeth. Sometimes this happens when we are awake but predominantly occurs whilst we sleep.  This factor makes it hard to control, especially when the stress is caused by an external source such as the current situation.

In the most extreme cases, this grinding, also known as Bruxism, can cause breakages or chipping of the teeth. This is perhaps more likely on teeth that are already compromised, but severe grinding could damage even healthy teeth. Another possible outcome is TMJ which is a problem with the jaw that can be quite painful for those suffering from it.

Tooth decay and gum disease

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Coronavirus – Don’t Neglect Your Children’s Teeth

Advice to parents from the Cygnet Dental Practice in Wickford

Child with parentsAlthough children seem to be one of the groups least affected by the Covid-19 virus, they are not entirely safe from it and, like the rest of us, should be socially distancing. There are other aspects of the current situation which will be affecting them too, including their schooling. Some may also have anxieties around the current situation and, as parents, we are all doing our best to maintain a level of normality as best as we can.

Things change at times like this and our routines can go out of the window. As we know, most children do need some sort of routine, and one in particular which concerns us is the routine surrounding their oral care.

Have a strict brushing routine

Establishing a regular brushing routine for children can be quite difficult initially. Once this has been done though and they are abiding by it, it can be very tricky when you have to change it. Most children probably brush their teeth around their school or playgroup routine, and as that has been taken away for the time being, it is important that a new regular time slot is found.

Every child and family is different of course, and you will be in a better position than us to find one that works for your own children. Here are a few suggestions from your Wickford dental team which might help you to establish a new regular routine.

  • As soon as they get up (though this might be one of the more difficult ones to implement!)
  • Right before they start to do any school work that has been set for them or that you are teaching
  • After breakfast, but do allow at least half an hour before brushing as the enamel will be softer at this time and can be worn away more easily
  • After they have got dressed in the morning (presuming of course, that they aren’t spending the day in their PJs!)

Whatever the new routine, find one that works best for you and them and try to make sure to stick to it.

Don’t overdo the sweets

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General Dental And Invisalign Care During The Covid-19 Lockdown Period

Advice from your Wickford dental team.

Invisalign invisible bracesWe hope and trust that our patients are staying safe during this difficult time. The lockdown may be a break from work for some, but for others it will pose a lot of challenges, both financially and mentally. For those who are struggling, there are many articles available which may be of help.

From our perspective, we thought it would be useful to use this blog post to discuss how you can keep your teeth and gums healthy during this ‘lockdown’ phase.

We have also included a brief additional note for Cygnet Dental Practice patients who have started an Invisalign course of treatment.

General oral health advice

For many of us, our lives will have been temporarily turned upside down and our routines will have gone out of the window. There is a danger that, along with it, our oral health care routine may have suffered too. If we are used to brushing our teeth before leaving for work in the morning, that particular time slot may no longer exist, at least for now. Brushing our teeth twice a day is the very cornerstone of good oral health and we advise patients to try to find a new regular time to brush your teeth in the morning especially.

Our evening brushing should still be the last thing we do before getting into bed, but our old morning brushing routine may need to take place at a different time, such as before we walk the dog or do our morning exercise. Everybody is different but if you can find a regular slot to brush your teeth, you are more likely to maintain a regular routine.

Take care with what you eat

These are tricky times and we will all cope with it in different ways. Many of us will spend more time watching TV or generally relaxing where we can. With this often comes a desire to snack. Whilst some snacks, such as crisps etc, aren’t especially harmful for our teeth (though not ideal from a general health perspective), we may also find that we are eating more cakes or chocolate. The additional sugar consumed by doing so could result in an increase in cases of tooth decay.

Please bear in mind that our Wickford dental practice is currently closed for all but urgent emergency dental advice (please see https://www.cygnetessexdental.co.uk/#corona ). A mild toothache is unlikely to be treated at this time and may have to wait until we are reopened unfortunately. Even a mild toothache can make this already difficult period seem to last longer than it already does, so making sure that you clean your teeth well and avoiding too many sugary foods will hopefully help you to avoid this.

Invisalign wearers

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Dr Vashali Nanji – One Of Our Patient Friendly Dentists

Excellent with nervous patients, Vashali also provides a wide variety of treatments for her Wickford patients.

Dentist Vashali Nanji, WickfordIn Vashali Nanji, the Cygnet Dental Practice is proud to have a dentist as part of the team who is especially good at putting even the most nervous patients at ease, helping them to receive essential dental care.

Graduating in 2011 with Honours from Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, she offers a valuable service to all of our Wickford patients.

It isn’t just her calm and relaxed manner, along with the gentle way that she administers treatment that our patients admire, but also the beneficial dental procedures that she can provide. In today’s blog, we will take a look at some of these.

Dental implants

Vashali accepts referrals for dental implants which enable those who have missing teeth to have a strong and secure replacement. They are also a popular option for patients who have switched from partial dentures to having implants placed. Dentures still have a role to play in dental care but most dentists would agree that implants now offer the best long term solution for replacing teeth in most cases. Those that replace their dentures with implants are likely to find it easier to eat more difficult to chew foods. There is be no movement of the replacement teeth and cleaning is easy – so it isn’t hard to see why people come to Vashali to have implant treatment.

Dentures

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Our Cross Infection Control Promise

Minimising the risk of infection for patients and dentists at our Wickford practice.

Cygnet Dental Wickford LogoViruses are currently headline news and whilst most of us will have a viral infection from time to time, most of these will be usually relatively minor. Even with a relatively mild virus though, it is still important to take them seriously and limit the risk of cross infection.

As you would expect, the team at the Cygnet Dental Practice come into contact with a lot of patients each week and obviously we do all that we can to protect both the patient and members of our dental team.

What we do

Even before the current headlines, our dentists have always  taken the issue of cross infection seriously and worn the appropriate protection. All of our dentists will wear disposable face masks as well as disposable surgical gloves when treating a patient. These are safely disposed of after examining or treating each patient as viruses and bacteria may linger on them.

Understandably, most of the equipment and implements that we use are not disposable as they are very sophisticated and are therefore expensive. These are thoroughly sterilised though in order to kill any germs and bacteria that might linger on them. We will never use the same equipment on different patients without it having undergone this thorough sterilisation process in between.

Finally, our Wickford practice is kept thoroughly clean, not only in the general reception areas but especially the treatment rooms which regularly undergo a deep cleaning process to keep them as hygienic as possible.

Finally, you may have seen reports that there is a shortage of face masks following the present situation. Currently, this is not an issue for us but we will make alternative arrangements should it become necessary.

What can you do?

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Straighter Teeth With Fast Acting Orthodontics

‘Six Month Smile’ braces available at our Wickford practice.

Young people with nice smilesIt is one thing to wish to have straighter teeth; it is another to undergo the treatment required to have them. Although there is usually no dental surgery involved, it does require a commitment of time and a little patience to achieve this aim.

The biggest barrier in patient’s minds is often the thought of having to wear teeth braces for a lengthy period of time. As we will discuss a little later though, things have changed, and patients of the Cygnet Dental Practice will find that it is now not the challenge that it once may have been.

Why straighter teeth?

Before we look at the role of orthodontics, it is worth asking why you should bother having straight teeth. After all, even crooked teeth will enable us to chew our food in most cases. For most people the answer is aesthetics. Badly crooked teeth can affect a person’s confidence when it comes to their smile. Even a slight overlapping of visible front teeth can detract from an otherwise pleasant smile.

It isn’t just aesthetics though. Crooked teeth, and especially those that overlap, are much more difficult to keep clean. Tiny particles of food and bacteria can easily become trapped in the very tight spaces provided; spaces that a toothbrush and even floss may not be able to reach. This can lead to tooth decay with the likelihood of fillings and possibly even an extraction needed. In more complex cases, there is also the issue of “bite” where misalignment can lead to further problems such as headaches and an aching jaw.

Which dental braces?

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