January 12th, 2011
The invention of the laser has had as much of an impact in central London as the computer. It’s used in all walks of life, from engineering, to lighting displays through to medical procedures. So, it was only a matter of time before it found its way into the dentist’s surgery, in the form of Waterlase. Traditional drilling produces vibration and can lead to minute cracks in the teeth and generates a lot of heat in the process whereas laser surgery is extremely precise an accurate and eliminates all of these problems with one very attractive bonus- it’s very fast and almost painless, hence eliminating the need for anaesthetics. Using a laser to treat decayed areas in the mouth virtually eliminates bleeding and post surgery damage. It is perfect for cavity and root canal treatment doing the job of a drill with more accuracy and far less stresses on the surrounding tooth. Waterlase is also becoming more widely used in dental implant surgery, allowing the implant to be placed precisely, causing minimal damage to the surrounding gum tissue and shortening healing times. Finally, a laser also eliminates the need of a scalpel that can seriously cause damage to gum tissue, thus making it perfect for gum contouring to eliminate the gummy smile.
April 13th, 2010
Your mouth is an excellent indicator of your overall health. Many general bodily health complaints have symptoms that manifest themselves in the mouth. This is why whenever you visit your GP they will check inside your mouth for the telltale signs of a number of health complaints. This is hardly surprising given that the mouth is the gateway to the body, with all food and drink entering the body through the cavity, as well as it being an airway. But it does also work the other way, with the mouth being the cause of more general health problems.
Possible the most well known and serious is the fact that gum disease and oral infection has strong links to heart disease and even fatal heart attacks. When gum disease takes hold in the mouth, it begins to infect areas of gum tissue. These initially become inflamed, causing pain and possible bleeding. If the infection is not addressed either with improved cleaning or with treatment from a London dentist, the infection can spread to other areas of the mouth. It is also possible for it to enter the bloodstream where it can begin to cause serious problems.
If gum disease spreads into the blood it can set off a chemical chain reaction that can result in a narrowing of the arteries around the heart. This will increase blood pressure putting greater strain in the heart and even being responsible for heart attacks. The frustrating thing about gum disease is that it is preventable with better dental care yet 90% of adults in the UK will suffer from it at some point in their lives. More effective brushing and flossing, twinned with regular dental check ups can help to keep gum disease from causing any further health complications.
January 11th, 2010
Everyone knows about the health consequences of smoking but slightly lesser known are the negative dental effects of using tobacco products. These can range from smaller problems like bad breath to very serious and life threatening health problems like oral cancer.
The risk of dental problems is greatly increased by smoking and the list of problems it can cause is very long. Smoking can cause gum disease, discolouration and even tooth loss because the nicotine and tar found in cigarettes causes plaque to stick to the teeth and gums causing decay. Smoking also prevents the flow of saliva, which acts as a natural protective agent against tooth decay and gum disease.
Smoking is particularly bad for the gums as it limits the flow of blood to the tissue causing inflammation and increased infection. Gum tissue can also loosen as a result of smoking, creating spaces for bacteria to gather. These recesses are very difficult to clean once filled with plaque and bacteria. Smoking can also prevent successful treatment of many dental problems as it can impair healing.
If you are experiencing dental problems as a result of smoking or are concerned about what damage it may be doing to your teeth, make an appointment to see a City of London dentist to discuss possible treatments and advice on giving up. Quitting smoking at any stage in life can allow your teeth to recover to a certain degree. Gums will be healthier and any dental treatment will be far more effective for non-smokers than for smokers. You can help your teeth and gums stay healthy by stopping smoking today with help from a City of London dentist.
June 6th, 2009
Even though your wisdom teeth may not have erupted, they can cause all kinds of problems. For example, if they start to erupt, and then stop, the gum tissue around them can be easily irritated. This is especially important to consider if there is a small flap of gum covering the tooth. As may be expected, irritation can often lead to infection. Wisdom teeth can also cause all kinds of jaw pain, as well as throw your other teeth out of alignment.
If your wisdom teeth are impacted, it will be to your advantage to have them removed as quickly as possible. Fortunately, you can have this procedure done at a London dental office. Depending on the situation, your dentist may remove two wisdom teeth from one side of your mouth, and then do the other two at a later date.
In general, most people will not need to go to an oral surgeon to have wisdom teeth removed. That said, if you have other conditions that need to be considered, your dentist may feel that you need the extra skills offered by an oral surgeon. Fortunately, even if you do have to go to an oral surgeon, you will still be able to have the procedure done in an office setting, as opposed to in a hospital.
Many people today forget about wisdom teeth until they start causing problems. For example, you may not even think about them until you have swollen gums, or notice that there is a funny taste in your mouth. By this time, the wisdom tooth and the surrounding gum are probably infected. Once that happens, you will need to go on antibiotics, as well as have the tooth removed. Without a question, you are better off preventing this situation, rather than go through it as your mouth changes with age.
April 11th, 2009
Ankylosis is a term used in dentistry when a tooth is directly bonded to its surrounding bone. Teeth that are ankylosed are more often difficult to extract than teeth that are not ankylosed. It is difficult to determine if a tooth or teeth is/are ankylosed prior to the oral surgery procedure using dental X-rays. By performing an oral examination to determine if the tooth has any visible movement, your City of London dentist can make a fairly good educated guess to determine if the tooth is ankylosed. If the tooth is ankylosed, there should be no visible or palpable movement. Usually when ankylosed teeth are extracted, a portion of the surrounding bone will crack and be removed together with the tooth. Your City of London dentist will check to see if there are remaining other sections of loose oral bone in the extraction socket or in the immediate vicinity of the extraction site. These pieces of bone and other splinters of bone should be removed during this surgical procedure, in order to expedite the healing process. If these loss sections of bone are not removed, healing will take longer and be more painful. The loose pieces of bone left in place will eventually exfoliate and more through the gum tissue until they reach the surface. If this occurs in the future, you may feel a splinter type projection on the gum tissue that can become rather painful, and should be removed. Your City of London dentist will take all precautions to make sure that your tooth removal experience is pleasant.
September 13th, 2008
Are you experiencing a bad toothache or are you noticing drainage, blood and/or pus next to a tooth or teeth? Then you should telephone your London dentist immediately! You most likely have an abscessed tooth. A tooth abscess is the result of an infection(s) that occurs in the tooth itself due to dental caries or in the gum tissue next to the tooth. It left untreated, the problem can extend further, to the point where the tooth is lost and further problems arise. If dental caries is left untreated, the harmful microorganisms within the tooth itself will continue to spread and will most likely cause pain or a dental abscess. An abscess associated with gum disease results in the spread of bacteria in the gum tissue next to the tooth, creating loss of supporting bone and a periodontal pocket where the abscess forms. This can result in the loss of teeth.
The signs and symptoms of a tooth abscess are: dental pain; swelling of the gums and redness in the area; a horrible smell coming from the mouth; a bad taste in the mouth; you may have a temperature and; a boil in your gum adjacent to the abscessed area.
How will your London dentist help you once he determines that you have a tooth abscess? Your dentist will prescribe an antibiotic for the infection, which will help to kill the bacteria involved with the tooth abscess. However, in order to treat the tooth abscess, your dentist will drill a hole in either your tooth or its supporting structure to alleviate the pressure built up in your tooth or gums to allow the abscess to drain, thus relieving the pain associated with the abscess. If the tooth is infected, a root canal will be performed if you and your dentist agree to the procedure, or the tooth may require extraction. The dentist will have you place an ice-pack on the area outside your mouth, rinse with salt water (i.e., one teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of warm water), and may prescribe a pain medication or instruct you to use an over-the-counter pain medication.
In order to prevent an abscess, you should take proper care of your teeth and gums by: brushing two times a day, using dental floss to clean between your teeth, eating healthy foods and limiting sugar-based snack foods, and visiting your London dentist regularly for routine dental checkups.
September 11th, 2008
Tooth sensitivity is tooth pain that can be caused by the following sensations on your tooth or teeth, these are; excessive heat, cold, sweets or sour foods and drinks. Even breathing cold air or touching your tooth or teeth in the wrong area, may produce this sensitivity. The ache felt in the tooth may be sharp and abrupt, and penetrate deep into your tooth’s nerve endings. The causes of tooth sensitivity and its treatment can both be explained to you, and treated, in our London Clinic.
The causes of tooth sensitivity happens when the tooth’s dentin layer is exposed due to receding gum tissues, or when the tooth is not properly covered all the way around by enamel on the crown portion of the tooth, and cementum on the root portion of the tooth. When this occurs, exposed minute dentinal tubules, which make up the dentin layer of the tooth, are exposed to the environment. These dentinal tubules communicate with the pulp of the tooth. The pulp contains nerves, a blood supply, and other tissues. When exposed, these dentinal tubules (or channels) allow the external stimulus to create a situation where the nerve cells endings are triggered, leading to pain.
There are many reasons why people have tooth sensitivity. These include, but are not limited to: using a hard bristle brush and being overzealous with your brushing, thus wearing down enamel over time; gum recession; gum disease; cracked, chipped, or decayed teeth; teeth grinding; overuse of whitening products, abrasive toothpastes, plaque accumulation (as end-products of bacteria are acidic), several over-the-counter mouthwashes that are acidic, and acidic drinks and foods. Also, individuals between the ages of 25-30 years olds are at increased risk of tooth sensitivity. Regular dental therapies may also leave your tooth or teeth sensitivity however this is usually a temporary situation.
There are several things that you can do to reduce or eliminate tooth sensitivity. These include but are not limited to: maintaining good oral hygiene; using a soft- bristled toothbrush; using fluoride-based toothpastes for sensitive teeth (e.g., smear it on your tooth with your finger and let it penetrate for a few minutes and then brush); pay attention to what you eat and drink; try to avoid grinding your teeth, use fluoridated dental products, and visit your dentist regularly. If you cannot manage tooth sensitivity by yourself using the above methods, speak with your dentist. Your dentist may recommend the placement of tooth bonding materials, fluoride based polishes or dentin sealers.
September 6th, 2008
Many dental care products available in London contain various nutritional supplements; coenzyme Q 10 is one of these supplements. Historically, the benefits of coenzyme Q 10 (CoQ10) in oral health have been known for decades. Oxidative damage occurs in periodontal disease, and research has demonstrated possible therapeutic effects of anti-oxidants in treating and/or preventing periodontal disease are useful, with special attention on CoQ10. Clinically, topical application of CoQ10 to periodontal pockets was evaluated with and without professional cleaning below the gum tissue, and significant improvements were seen that included the reduction of gingivitis, bleeding on periodontal probing and gingival enzyme activity, only at the CoQ10 treated sites. Another clinical study demonstrated that topical application of CoQ10 was extraordinarily effective in reducing periodontal pocket depth, and that healing was so excellent after 5-7 days of treatment that diseased gingival sites were difficult to locate.
Additionally, a clinical study demonstrated that patients with periodontitis frequently have significant gingival and white blood cell CoQ10 deficiencies. This white blood cell CoQ10 deficiency indicated a systemic nutritional imbalance, and was not likely caused by neglected oral hygiene. A gingival deficiency of CoQ10 could predispose individuals to gingivitis and periodontitis, and periodontitis could even augment CoQ10 deficiency. Also, the beneficial effect of CoQ10 has also been reported in an individual case study, where three dentists separately and independently scored clinical improvements of five symptoms of gingivitis and periodontitis, with the initial benefits being observed only three weeks after the beginning CoQ10 treatment.
Although, significant clinical reports demonstrated beneficial effects with CoQ10 on periodontal disease, the mechanism of the role of CoQ10 in periodontal disease was not known until, from 1971 to 1974, when CoQ10 gum tissue deficiencies were observed in patients with periodontal disease when compared to patients without periodontal disease. Clinical results suggested that topical application of CoQ10 improves adult periodontitis not only as a sole treatment, but also in combination with traditional non-surgical periodontal therapy.