Teeth whitening used to be a thing only the rich had done, but with new techniques and more simplified training procedures it has become affordable to many more people says a Bath dentist. The cheapest method is to simply bleach the white using home kits; these are available in most chemists’ shops and can be bought for under £100. They are easy to use and quick to do the job, but like all cheap versions of a good idea they have a limited life span and the effects aren’t all they are promised to be. It involves mixing up a paste that is placed into a gum shield, this in turn is placed over the top and bottom sets of teeth and left to do its job. The main problem here would be that different teeth are discoloured more than the other ones, and so the bleach wouldn’t necessarily do such a good even job. The next process involves a technician at a salon who uses a gel and an intense light source to create a reaction; this in turn breaks down the discolouration and leaves a whitening effect on the teeth. This method has its drawbacks though, if your teeth have receding gums then the light will damage the root of the exposed tooth, and the process can’t be done. It is also a bit more expensive at around 200 to 400 pounds a time. Veneers are the next alternative and this will need a dentist to apply them, they are similar in design to a false nail and are glued onto a discoloured tooth or teeth in much the same way. They aren’t removable like a nail and stay on for the duration of their life span, which is around 3-5 years. They can also cover up a multitude of other teeth problems.
February 26, 2010 at 5:12 am | teeth whitening | No comment
Gum or periodontal disease is the bane of us all; it causes not just discomfort and pain, but also an embarrassing smile. The good news is that it can stopped in its tracks and slowed down; although a cure is not possible once the damage has been done. A Weston-Super-Mare dentist is advising his patients that a better oral hygiene regime may well be the answer. The disease starts when bad bacteria gets into cuts and abrasions on the gums, this is caused by acid build up which is a by-product of the bacteria feeding off the food residue that gets trapped in gaps between the teeth. Saliva is produced to neutralise the acid, but that can often be insufficient when our saliva glands stop working. This is something that happens when we are asleep or have a build up of sugar in the blood, this is what diabetics suffer from and one of the signs is a dry mouth. You don’t have to be diabetic to get the symptoms of a dry mouth, it is caused by many other factors, however they all have the same consequences and that’s saliva deficiency. Once gum disease takes control the gums will swell up and soften, this allows vigorous brushing to leave cuts and infection will set in. Abscesses and tooth ache will follow and then the exposed gum line will allow tartar build up on the exposed root of the tooth, this will weaken the tooth and it will eventually break off. A good regime of oral hygiene care will not cure the problem, but it will go a long way to preventing further damage. Our teeth are our biggest asset and it is important that we do all we can to make them last, a simple change in oral care is all that it often needs.
February 23, 2010 at 5:35 am | gum disease | No comment
Gum disease isn’t curable in its advance stage; this is called Gingivitis and is the periodontal disease that eats away at the gum line. It is caused by bacteria infecting the gums by entering them through cuts and sores on the bottom of the ridges. Bacteria is a resident of our mouths and we need it to get rid of the food residue that lingers in between the teeth. However, like all good things it has its drawbacks and acid production is one of them, this eats away at the tooth enamel and the gums and sets them up for infection. Once an infection takes a hold a lot of damage can be done in quite a short period of time, obvious ones are an abscess or a boil which can both be very painful. A dentist cannot work on a tooth that is infected by either one of these, first they will need to prescribe a course of antibiotics to clear up the complaint. Then they can look at the root cause of the problem, this is usually due to bacteria seeping into the gums and can lead to further problem. The worse case scenario as mentioned is Gingivitis which is an advanced case of periodontal disease; and is irreversible. Once the gum line disappears then tartar builds up on the exposed root of the tooth and wears it away, this always leads to the loss of the tooth prematurely unless it is kept at bay. One of the best ways is to make sure you floss in between the teeth at every opportunity, and especially after a snack or meal. Plaque is dead bacteria and tartar is an accumulation of that plaque, your dentist will clean tartar away when they do your half yearly check up, but you must also do your bit to keep this build down to a minimum.
February 22, 2010 at 5:20 am | gum disease | No comment
A good dental hygiene program is the most important part of our whole hygiene regime, in the morning is when we are most vulnerable to being lax in our oral hygiene regime says a Swindon dentist. In the night our mouths produce an excessive amount of acid, and this acid is the single most cause of tooth decay in both children and adults. It only really needs for us to get into a habit of oral hygiene that becomes second nature to us. First of all we need keep a glass of water beside the bed and sip it throughout the night, its important because saliva usually keeps acid build up down, but when we sleep we stop producing saliva. This lack of saliva allows the bacteria in the mouth to go wild and produce excessive amounts of acid; this in turn makes plaque which is then attached to the teeth and usually in between them. If we don’t get rid of this in the morning then it will cause bad breath all day, and then it will impact and become tartar which is that thick, hard and rough material at the bottom of our tooth line. This will eat away at the teeth’s roots and weaken them drastically; this in turn will end in the gums becoming infected and the loss of the tooth before its time. All this can be avoided by a good oral care program, start off by flossing and make sure you get right in between the teeth, and then make sure your tooth brush has enough bristle length to get in between the teeth, as well as around to the back of them. Plaque is the enemy here and the elimination of it will result in better teeth and gums, free from infection and most important of all it will give us a lovely smile, nice breath and more confidence.
February 17, 2010 at 5:15 am | oral hygiene | No comment
Bad breath is the worse thing we experience first thing in the morning, much of which is brought on by what we have eaten and drunk the night before. When we drink too much alcohol we also tend to forget to clean and floss our teeth, which just adds to the problem. This can make our breath have a bad smell all day says a dentist from Chepstow. Drinking a half litre of water at night will help to keep down our acid production while we sleep, our saliva gland stops working as we sleep and so acid builds up. This produces plaque and that will attach itself to the inner part of any crevice in the mouth, as well as the tongue. Spicy food and drink isn’t just the problem here though, a lax regime in oral care is the biggest enemy of good clean breath. If we don’t floss and brush properly then we are banging our heads against a brick wall. Brushing is very important and it needs to be done properly with the right brush and stroking method, flossing is even more important as it not only removes the morning plaque, but it also helps to prevent a build up of tartar. Tartar is that rough edged substance that we can feel with our tongue when we are feeling around the back of the teeth; it is usually removed by a dentist when we have our half yearly check up. It is better to prevent the build up as it only adds to the problem of bad breath. Bad breath can also be a sign of diabetes and liver disease, so if it persists even though you are following all the advice go and consult a doctor. Oral hygiene advice is free at the dentist; see your surgery hygiene nurse.
February 16, 2010 at 5:01 am | oral hygiene | No comment
Food is the fuel we need to keep our bodies working and we all have our favourites, but do we know which ones are good for our teeth. A Bath dentist has advised patients that although certain foods may be good for us, they are harmful to our teeth, on the top of the list are sugar and acid based foods and that doesn’t just mean sweets, chocolate and candy products. Literally any food that is hard to chew is not good for your teeth or gums, these foods will cause an abrasion on the gums and also at the same time scratch off the enamel that protects the surface of a tooth. Ice is a no-no and should be avoided like the plague, especially if you wear braces. Fruit is good for us and we are advised to eat five a day as apart of our diet, this will also help to keep our gums and teeth healthy through the vitamins they naturally have within them. However, fruit contains acid and it is this acid that harms our teeth. We therefore have to take counter action to avoid this rather than avoiding the fruit itself, and washing our mouths with water afterwards will go a long way to neutralising that acid. A swishing motion is needed to do this, think of it as a mouth wash, and indeed use a mouth wash after eating fruit especially citrus types and apples. Lots of so called healthy bars are also a no-no as they use sugar based chewy substances to hold the bars together. The food content may seem appealing and healthy with lots of natural seeds and nuts, but take a look at the labels to see what else they contain. It isn’t just a case of certain foods being good for our bodies; we need to be careful what they contain as our mouths are also part of our body.
February 14, 2010 at 8:06 am | general dentistry | No comment
The worse problem with a periodontal disease such as Gingivitis is that it is often left too long before we start to seek treatment. Whenever gum disease treatment is left for another day the condition can only go one way, and that causes the condition to worsen over time. This will always end in tears, and in the worse case scenarios it will also end up with a much more serious condition. However, advanced gum disease treatment is easily avoidable if the problem is seen to by a dentist, and before it spreads to the area above the gum line. A dentist will generally scrape away the tartar that is a build up of bacteria which likes to congregate around the teeth’s roots, and in between them. There is no cure for gum disease as once it sets in it will cause irreparable damage. It is never too late to start a good regime of oral hygiene care though, even when the damage has been done and the gum line is eaten away. The good news is that although it isn’t curable gum disease can successfully be kept in touch, and healthy teeth can be brought back to a state of top condition. It is highly recommended that once the first signs of gum disease are noticed an appointment is made with your dentist, it is so important to catch any gum disease before too much of the gum line is lost; infections in the gum can leak into the blood stream and cause other problems with platelet production. This has been researched heavily, and the results indicate a link between heart disease and gum disease. So we can now see that getting gum disease treated early on in the process will prevent a lot more problems than just our oral care ones.
February 12, 2010 at 4:47 am | gum disease | No comment
Brushing is just one stage of cleaning our teeth, but it has to done properly or we are wasting our time says a Swindon dentist. The brush is the first thing to consider, and choosing one that is right for your mouth can be a nightmare. If your gums are soft then you will need to have a brush that won’t damage the surface, for that is the best way to start an infection. A semi hard brush will be needed in that case. The bristles length also needs to be taken into consideration, we need to be able to get in between the teeth and around the back of them. An electric brush can be a real help or it can be a hindrance, again it all depends on the type, make and style. Your dental hygiene nurse will be best suited to your personal needs in choosing a brush; some chemists do have trained people on hand to advise as well. Once the brush is chosen we need to start using it properly or it won’t be of much use to us, start brushing up and down in a slow motion, get to feel the brush and how it seems to work on the front of the teeth, especially look to see if the bristles are getting in between the teeth themselves. Now start a circular motion, this will move any plaque that has escaped the previous motion, look upon it as if you were polishing a mirror, and even practice on a mirror if you need to. Moving around to the back of the teeth we really need to able to feel the motion of the brush, as we cannot see the results immediately, use the same method of motion in the two mentioned directions. This should be enough to keep plaque at bay.
February 10, 2010 at 5:25 am | oral hygiene | No comment
The essence of good oral hygiene is keeping your mouth free from bacteria, plaque and food debris so that it looks and smells as healthy as possible. This can be indicated by teeth that are clean and free from food particles and staining, gums that are pink and do not hurt or bleed when brushed and breath that does not smell.
This can be achieved by adopting a fairly simple but quite regimented system of cleaning and regular dental check ups. Teeth cleaning is carried out most effectively in several stages. The first and most important is brushing your teeth twice a day with an appropriate brush and paste. A Weston-super-Mare dentist can recommend the most suitable products for your particular teeth. Brushing should be carried out gently so as not to damage the gums and at a forty-five degree angle to the teeth for the most effective cleaning.
Second to brushing in importance is flossing, which dentists recommend should be performed once a day. Flossing is important because it cleans teeth below the gum line and in the difficult inter-dental areas hard to reach with normal brushes. Both brushing and flossing help to prevent the build up of plaque, a substance that releases damaging acids that cause tooth decay if not removed. They also remove food debris that causes over 90 per cent of cases of bad breath.
Further cleaning methods that can benefit oral hygiene are using mouthwashes (always ask your dentist before using), inter-dental brushes and tongue cleaners. Effective brushing and flossing should be enough but these other apparatus can also help in some cases. However, effective cleaning is only really beneficial when teamed with regular check ups with your dentist. Even the cleanest mouth can still be susceptible to dental decay, and only a trained dentist can spot the first signs of decay and gum disease. Dentists recommend a check up every six months to help keep your mouth as healthy and clean as possible.
February 6, 2010 at 5:45 am | oral hygiene | No comment
Everyone is familiar with the rather unpleasant metallic smile associated with fixed metal braces used for orthodontic teeth straightening. Anybody of a certain age remembers the fear of having these metal train-track braces fitted and the teasing that almost inevitably accompanied them. Fortunately for today’s generation of teenagers and young adults, there are a range of more discreet straightening systems available on the market.
By far the most discreet however is the Invisalign system of clear plastic braces. Made from one millimetre thick see-through plastic, Invisalign braces are almost completely invisible to anyone not standing within a few feet of the patient’s teeth. The system works by using a series of clear retainer braces, worn for a period of roughly two weeks each, making small adjustments to the alignment of the patient’s teeth.
The aligners are also completely removable meaning the impact of the patient’s life is significantly reduced. For the first time there is a brace that fits around the patient’s lifestyle and not the other way round. The advantages of Invsalign over more conventional braces are clear for all to see, but there are differences when it comes to feeling as well. Because the braces involve no metal, there is no uncomfortable or irritating rubbing on the soft tissue of the mouth. When a new retainer is fitted there maybe some minor discomfort as the teeth adjust but this is common to all orthodontic treatments and very quickly wears off as the wearer becomes accustomed to the new brace.
Invisalign braces are available from Bath dentists who can give an estimation of cost and length of treatment, which may vary according to the degree of straightening required by the patient. With Invisalign presenting a genuine alternative to fixed metal braces there is no longer a need to fear orthodontic teeth straightening and no barrier to having the perfect smile.
February 4, 2010 at 5:11 am | invisalign | No comment