The Post Dental Implant Diet

No, not yet another eating craze, but sound advice for our dental implant patients!

If you are planning to have dental implants placed to replace a missing tooth, or a number of teeth, you have probably done some research into what the procedure involves, and, quite possibly, also the cost.

Making sure that your dental implant placement is a success though, comes down to more than just the skills of our Greenwich dentist, very important though they are. Aftercare is also important. This includes not only how we clean our teeth, but the diet that we follow afterwards too.

Immediately following the procedure

Given that your treatment involves minor oral surgery, you will certainly need to pay close attention to what you eat in the days and weeks following the implant procedure.

When the implant has just been placed into the bone, and the osseointegration period where bone and implant bond has not really started, you will need to avoid putting any stress on your new replacement tooth. This means no chewing of hard foods. Indeed, we strongly recommend that you follow a liquid diet only for a short while and avoid the temptation to ‘test out’ your new implant.

Intermediate term

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Same Day Dental Implant Placement

A one day treatment to replace a full arch of teeth

If you have more than ten consecutive teeth missing on either the upper or lower jaw, our one day dental implant procedure, sometimes called an ‘all on 4’ is a great way to replace them.

This method avoids the need to replace teeth individually and can also be used where a full arch of teeth are missing.

Although a full set of dentures could be used for the same purpose, in the opinion of our Greenwich dentists, the All on 4 treatment offers a number of benefits that dentures simply can’t.

The procedure

Unlike with individual implant placement for a single missing tooth, this revolutionary method uses just 4 (or occasionally 6) dental implants, even where a full arch of missing teeth is being replaced.

Once you have had a thorough examination at the Confidental Clinic, including scans and x rays to determine if you are a suitable candidate, the implants can be placed. Two special implants are placed towards the rear of the mouth. These are placed at an angle that provides significant extra strength and stability. The other 2 (or 4) implants are then placed towards the front of the mouth. These are regular implants as used for single tooth replacement.

Unlike individual placement where a three month period is necessary for the bone and implant to be fully bonded, your implants will typically be immediately ready to have a fixed bridge of replacement teeth attached. You will then be able to leave our dental practice with a brand new set of teeth, albeit there will still be some time needed for the implants to heal fully.

Advantages over dentures

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A Minor Cracked Tooth Should Be Treated Promptly

Don’t delay treatment for what you might consider to be minor issues!

With the wealth of medical information at our fingertips these days, it can be all too easy to self diagnose and decide whether a problem is serious or not. We often forget that our bodies, including our teeth, are far more sophisticated things than we might be aware of. Making a judgement whether we need treatment, rather than have it checked by a professional, could well lead to trouble a little further down the line.

Most people will see one of our Greenwich dentists when they are in pain from a toothache. Where the tooth doesn’t hurt or there is no obvious damage, such as a fine crack, it may be tempting to leave it; especially if you are a nervous dental patient. This is not a good idea though! Even minor problems can become bigger and may require much more extensive treatment at a later date, if not dealt with promptly.

A cracked tooth

Whilst some cracked teeth are visibly obvious, this is not always the case. Sometimes we may not be able to see the crack, but suspect it exists because we heard a loud sound as we ate something hard. After a bit of probing with the tongue and testing it out gently, we may decide that even if it is cracked, it doesn’t hurt and doesn’t seem to be causing a problem, so why have it looked at?

But taking this approach is asking for trouble and there are a number of issues which can soon arise from an untreated cracked tooth.

Decay – Once the enamel of the tooth has become compromised, the dentin layer beneath is more vulnerable to bacteria that causes tooth decay. Although it may be some time before the tooth actually hurts, the decay can become quite extensive and require a large filling, or even extraction, if not treated.

Infected root canals – If the bacteria reaches the pulp area in the root canals of the tooth, infection is almost certain to occur. This can be very painful as the nerves are stored in this area. Once this happens, the only way to resolve the issue is to have root canal treatment.

Treating a cracked tooth

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Causes And Solutions For White Spots On Your Teeth

Our Greenwich dental team examine this not uncommon problem.

Other than their regular appointments at the Confidental Clinic, patients generally come to see us when there is an obvious problem, such as a toothache or a broken tooth.

From time to time though, a patient will make an appointment because they have noticed something a little unusual with their teeth. One of these is when they have noticed white spots on them.

Are white spots serious?

Although it is sensible to have them checked out by your dentist, having white spots on your teeth is rarely a cause for serious medical concern. They can have a number of causes, and solutions can range from a change in lifestyle choices, through to cosmetic dental treatments.

The following are some common causes:

Dental fluorosis

Dental fluorosis usually occurs when we are young and develops before the teeth appear through the gums. A similar condition occurs when the enamel does not develop properly in its early stages. This usually corrects itself over time, but care should be taken as it does increase the risk of tooth decay.

Poor dental hygiene

If you eat too many sugary or acidic foods, especially when wearing a dental brace, you are more likely to see these spots. Make sure to clean your teeth well both at home and through seeing a hygienist for a thorough scale and polish treatment every six months or so.

Treatments

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How Strong And Secure Is A Dental Crown?

Crowns are commonly used for restorations and implants at the Confidental Clinic, Greenwich.

A crown is a useful type of tooth restoration used to resolve a number of dental problems. When a cavity is large, a root canal treatment carried out, or for a dental implant placement, crowns of various types can be used to complete the procedure.

Except for dental implants, where crowns are attached to the replacement titanium tooth ‘root’ via an abutment, crowns are usually fitted to the prepared natural tooth using a strong dental adhesive.

How strong are they?

Crowns are very strong, and generally, you should be able to use a restored tooth in exactly the same way that you would a natural tooth. The only exception to this is where a root canal procedure has been carried out. This is because the nerves will have been removed, making it easier to bite down harder than intended. So some additional caution is advised there.

How secure are they?

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Is Gum Disease Painful?

Some common misconceptions about gum health.

If your teeth aren’t giving you any trouble and you are fairly sure that you have no cavities, then it is easy to believe that your mouth is in good health. It isn’t just your teeth that matter though. Your gums are just as important.

Poor gum health can cause a number of problems and even eventually lead to tooth loss in some cases. This is one of the reasons why the team at the Confidental Clinic in Greenwich put such emphasis on helping our patients to have healthy gums.

How do you know if you have gum disease though? There can be a presumption that if you have a problem with your gums, that it will hurt, but is this really true?

Painful gums?

Gum disease can cause soreness of the gums, for sure. This is not always the case though, and even if your gums feel OK, you should still have them checked by our hygienist. There is no real point in waiting until your gum problem has become more advanced before having it treated.

Gingivitis, the earlier stage of gum disease, is much more easily treated than if it is left to advance to periodontitis. At this stage, more extensive and invasive treatment is needed. Having it treated early on will help to avoid this.

What if my gums bleed?

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Dental Anxiety Triggers

dental fear

Our Greenwich dentists look at some of the things that may cause dental anxiety.

Dental anxiety is very real and it is a fact that many people suffer from this. Whilst some may simply be able to acknowledge their anxieties but still see their dentist when required, others may well miss many appointments until a painful toothache forces them to receive treatment.

In today’s blog, we take a look at some of the things that might trigger anxiety in patients and what can be done to alleviate it.

The ‘needle’

One of the biggest anxieties we encounter at the Confidental Clinic is that of the ‘needle’. This is used to administer a local anaesthetic when an invasive procedure is needed. Despite what many people think, it is not the needle entering the gum which causes the discomfort, but more when the anaesthetic enters the bloodstream. We always take care to administer this as gently as possible in order to minimise any discomfort.

The drill

If you asked people what sound they most associated with the dentist, they would almost certainly say the drill. Once a patient starts to hear the sound of the drill, some start to anticipate pain (see next section). However, the modern dental drill is a very sophisticated piece of equipment which allows us to perform a procedure as efficiently and quickly as possible. The high pitched ‘whirring’ sound is caused by its fast rotating speed and without this, your procedure would take longer; something few patients would want.

The pain factor

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Reducing The Risks Of Oral Cancer

With a few lifestyle changes and regular checks, the risk and consequences of oral cancer can be decreased.

When you visit the Confidental Clinic for your regular check up, you probably spend most of the time crossing your fingers that there is no dental decay. Some patients may be surprised to know that not only do we check your teeth and gums for any problems, including tooth decay, but the oral cavity in general too.

The reason for this is that we are in an excellent position to notice any unusual signs that might give cause for concern. Some of these, such as red patches or lesions of the soft tissue could indicate the possible presence of mouth cancer.

Reducing the risks

Before we get onto discussing cancer itself, it is worth reminding our Greenwich patients of some simple ways to reduce the risks. The most obvious of these is to stop smoking, if you haven’t already. Smoking is perhaps the greatest threat to your oral cavity and you should make every attempt to stop. Whilst the occasional alcoholic drink should do little harm; if you are a regular or heavy drinker, the risk of oral cancer is also significantly increased. Excess alcohol consumption is also harmful to your general health so ask your GP to advise about how you can live a healthier lifestyle.

Another increasing contributor to oral cancer is the HPV virus. This is largely transmitted orally during sex; so if you are sexually active, and especially with a number of partners, it is advisable to talk to your GP about a possible vaccination.

What if we find potential symptoms?

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Some Dental Fun Facts For Kids

Educating children about having healthy teeth doesn’t have to be boring!

Any parent will want the best for their children, and that includes having great looking and healthy teeth. No parent wants to see their child suffer with toothache, and, in most cases, this can be fairly easily avoided.

Whilst we need to supervise our kids whilst they brush their teeth, it is also a good idea to get them thinking about their own teeth from an early stage, encouraging them to take at least some responsibility for their care.

Of course, a key part of their oral health care will be to see the children’s dentist at our Greenwich practice on a regular basis. Ongoing monitoring of growing teeth is especially important and can determine a number of factors as they develop from children into adults.

Education – don’t make them yawn!

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Tooth Extraction Aftercare

Looking after the extraction area following tooth removal in Greenwich.

At the Confidental Clinic, one of our main roles is to help our Greenwich patients keep their natural teeth for as long as possible.

There are many restorative procedures that can help us to do this, including fillings and crowns, but in some situations though, this may not be possible and the tooth may need to be extracted.

Once your tooth has been removed, it is important that you take good care of the area where the tooth has been extracted. Immediately following the procedure, we will stem any blood flow from the wound using a piece of sterile gauze. Once we are happy that a blood clot has formed, and the healing process is under way, the care of this area falls largely to the patient. We are, of course, always available should you have any concerns in the days following your treatment.

Below, we offer some simple tips to help you keep the wound clean and healthy, and speed up the healing time.

Leave the clot alone

Once a blood clot has formed, this will heal and protect the area of the extraction. It is important that this stays in place and you should not poke it with your finger, tongue or any implement, including a toothbrush. If the clot does become dislodged, please discuss this with your local Greenwich dentist. This can lead to a problem known as a ‘dry socket’ which can be very uncomfortable.

Keep it clean

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