How veneers were initially used, and their benefits for Essex patients today.
Cosmetic dentistry in the UK is relatively new to many people, especially compared to the US where it has been common practice for many years.
An increasing number of patients from the Chelmsford area of Essex though, are using the cosmetic treatments available at Blue Sky Dental in order to give them a smile they could only otherwise dream of.
We have discussed in previous blogs, how the popular cosmetic treatment, dental implants originated, but may not have discussed how dental veneers first started. So let’s address that today.
The ‘Hollywood’ smile
In 1928, Hollywood films were becoming increasingly popular, with more and more people going to the cinema to see the latest films. Stars of the day included the likes of Douglas Fairbanks and Rudolph Valentino, and, increasingly, many films included romantic scenes where a close up was required.
Given that, at this time, many actors and actresses both smoked and drank fairly heavily, long before the days where health concerns were noted, it wasn’t uncommon for their teeth to be badly stained and far from attractive. This could certainly spoil a smile that took up a large part of the cinema screen!
To address this, a dentist called Charles Pincus was asked to design a way of improving the appearance of an actor’s smile. To do this, he created dental veneers which were used to mask the often stained surface of the actor’s teeth.
Modern day veneers
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Orthodontic treatment with convenient and comfortable aligners.
Perhaps the longest dental treatment to complete is straightening of teeth.
Naturally, it is important not to put excessive pressure on teeth to correct their position as this could cause irreparable damage, but this often means that the patient will need to wear their braces for a year or more. This is a factor which probably deters quite a number of people from wearing them.
Whilst there are some orthodontics, such as Cfast, which are designed to correct minor issues with the front teeth, and which can complete the treatment in a much shorter time; where more significant correction is needed with a wider range of teeth, these are usually not suitable and longer term orthodontics are needed.
Convenient orthodontics for our Chelmsford patients
The inconvenience of having to wear uncomfortable braces for a year or more is enough to put many people off having the treatment. Thankfully, there are now orthodontic systems available which, at the very least, minimise the discomfort and inconvenience of wearing braces. At Blue Sky Dental, we offer one of these systems in the form of Invisalign.
What is Invisalign?
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Reasons for considering Blue Sky Dental in Chelmsford as your first choice practice.
Making a decision about which dentist to register with, especially when you are new to an area, can be a tricky one. You may not have built up a network of friends or work colleagues yet who can advise who they go to. It can be tempting then, to choose the dentist who is situated the closest to you. This is a logical approach as most of us live busy lives and finding a convenient dentist nearby is a practical choice, but it is not always the best one.
If you take a look at your nearest Chelmsford dental practice, what do they offer? All dentists have to be registered with the General Dental Council, so they should be able to carry out essential dental care at least. For those seeking the widest range of options for looking after their teeth and gums though, there is more to consider than just this.
Specialist dental treatment
In addition to procedures that most patients are familiar with, such as fillings and extractions; our team of specialists are able to handle complex dental problems which many practices are not; referring patients instead to other dentists.
Among the specialist dental services provided at Blue Sky Dental are:
- Oral surgery (inc removal of wisdom teeth)
- Prosthodontics (replacement of teeth and other mouth structures using artificial means such as implants)
- Periodontics (the care and treatment of periodontitis)
- Endodontics (root canal treatment)
By using Blue Sky Dental, you will not need to visit another, different practice should you need any of these treatments, instead, receiving your treatment from one of our experienced specialist dental team.
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This standard, but useful technology reveals deep seated problems.
If you have been seeing a dentist at Blue Sky Dental for some time, there is every likelihood that you have had at least one x-ray.
These are usually taken when we suspect that there may be something wrong but the symptoms are not immediately visible.
Although patients probably tend to think of their teeth as the visible white object that they can see above the gum-line, there is a large section of the tooth that lies beneath the gum and also embedded in our jawbone. Because we cannot see beneath the gum line with the naked eye, our Chelmsford dentists may use x-rays to determine what issues, if any, are happening where we can’t otherwise see.
Where a tooth has started to suffer from decay, it will be necessary to remove the decaying material and fill it, possibly using a white tooth filling for a better aesthetic effect. Providing that your teeth are checked regularly, there is every chance that the filling may be minor. Occasionally though, it may be necessary to take an x-ray to determine the extent of more extensive decay, and, from this, decide the most appropriate treatment.
Some gum disease symptoms are obvious. Bleeding, sore or inflamed gums are certainly a sign that all is not well, with gum disease being the most likely cause. It may be necessary to take x-rays to determine how advanced the problem is. When at its advanced stage, periodontitis, the bone structure surrounding the tooth can be compromised. X-rays are an excellent way to determine the degree of any damage caused if this is the case.
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Going abroad for cheaper implants may not be the bargain that you hoped for.
You may have read in the news very recently, of a patient who travelled to India 2 years ago to have his dental implants placed. On the surface of it, he saved a lot of money. However, because of complications from his procedure, he has had to undergo further treatment in the UK.
This is not an uncommon result of seeking out special offers for implant placement in other countries. Whilst this is by no means inevitable, it is a real risk that patients should consider before making a decision about whether to risk the overseas treatment, or pay the usual UK rates and have a safe and effective implant procedure at our convenient Chelmsford surgery.
There are a number of things that you should consider if you are thinking of having your treatment abroad.
Is the dentist suitably qualified? – In the UK, an implant dentist must be registered with the General Dental Council and have undergone the extra training and passed the relevant qualifications before they can place implants. It can be very difficult to ascertain the degree of a dentist’s skills in some countries and regulations may also vary from place to place.
Are they using high quality implants? – This is one way that some dentists abroad may manage to cut costs significantly. This is a dangerous move though, as only titanium implants will bond successfully with the bone, the key to this procedure’s success. Using other materials, or general poorly made implants means that the risk of failure is much higher.
What about aftercare? – Any UK dentist will want to see their patient for regular checks following the placement of the implant, until such a time that they are happy that the process has been successful. Even then, regular six monthly check ups will be necessary to make sure that they, and your natural teeth, are healthy. Follow up appointments abroad could prove to be very expensive, and, if the dentist is not properly qualified, may only add to the risks.
Local implant placement
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Even modern dentures can be problematic – what’s the alternative?
Although there have been many advances in teeth replacement systems, we still see a lot of patients at our Chelmsford practice who wear “standard” dentures.
Whilst most are happy with the appearance of these, some patients still enquire to see if there are alternatives which are even more stable and less maintenance intensive.
Here at Blue Sky Dental, we are pleased to offer alternatives to dentures in the way of dental implants, or, alternatively, we can stabilise your dentures using implants too.
A common complaint of denture wearers is sore gums. In most cases this is likely to be caused by small movements of the plate which rubs against the gums. Over time, this can cause soreness and possibly inflammation of the gums.
The ‘awkward moments’ factor
Most denture wearers will have a tale to tell about when their dentures let them down at an inconvenient moment. Whether sailing through a job interview or meeting someone for the first time and all is going well until …… your dentures work loose, either visibly, or enough to cause your speech to falter. Whilst most modern dentures are much more stable these days, periodically they can let the wearer down when eating or speaking.
Alternatives and improvements to dentures
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Improving your smile safely and effectively at Blue Sky Dental in Chelmsford.
Hopefully, all of our Chelmsford patients have had a happy Christmas and New Year and are raring to go in 2018.
Whilst the festive period may have been busy and, perhaps, a little hectic; as things start to wind down, many of us will start to think about what we hope to achieve this new year.
It is probably no coincidence that our cosmetic dental team receive an increase in enquiries about teeth whitening procedures at this time of year. We are always happy to help our patients to achieve a new level of whiteness with our safe and effective home teeth whitening system.
Whilst a teeth whitening treatment is not inherently dangerous, it can be damaging in the wrong hands. It is now illegal for anyone but a qualified dental professional to perform this procedure. Previously, some inexperienced people were setting up teeth whitening clinics, often using much too strong solutions of bleach to whiten teeth. This could be very painful and also potentially damaging to the teeth.
Our ‘at home’ system includes custom made trays, in which the bleach is placed and which are produced from impressions of each patient’s teeth. Not only does this make them more comfortable, but also greatly reduces the risk of any burning of the soft tissue from the whitening agent.
Whilst it is now illegal to perform this procedure if you are not a dentist, people are still being prosecuted for this. Never risk your teeth in this way; instead talk to our Chelmsford team about our whitening treatment.
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Some last minute festive oral health tips from Blue Sky Dental.
For those of you who are not too busy running around looking for last minute Christmas presents, we thought that we would use our last pre Christmas blog to offer some gentle advice to help you to get through the festive season with the minimum of risk to your teeth.
We are sure that our Chelmsford dental patients would rather enjoy the food, drink and entertainment than have to see an emergency dentist because of a painful or broken tooth!
We have put together a few tips below, which will help you on your way to having a happy and trouble free Christmas.
Keep your teeth clean
Especially at this time of year, when we have eaten a lot of high sugar foods, it is important to make sure that you both brush and floss your teeth. This should be obvious, but, after a long and sometimes tiring day, it can be much easier to crawl into bed without brushing your teeth. It only takes a few minutes to do this very important task, and is well worth any effort involved.
Don’t start smoking
If you are an ex smoker, this time of the year can be quite challenging. As the alcohol starts to flow, you might be encouraged by a friend or relative who smokes to just have the ‘one cigarette’ or cigar. Whilst some ex smokers may be able to do this, most will probably find that their temptation to smoke returns. Taking this path is a sure way to oral health problems, to say nothing of your wallet!
Watch the sugar
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What tooth friendly presents will Santa put in your sack?
This might be the last Blue Sky Dental blog that we post before the Christmas holidays, so we thought that we would write a piece to help those of you who are still running around looking for last minute Christmas presents for their friends and family.
As dentists, of course, we would also like to help you keep your teeth and gums in good condition at this time of year, and hopefully, our last minute present suggestions will help you to do this.
Christmas could be a useful time to make sure that your family’s toothbrushes are still new enough to be effective. In fact, you shouldn’t use a toothbrush, or electric brush head that is over three months old. After this time, or earlier if the bristles are worn, it become less effective at removing both food particles and bacteria from the teeth and gum line.
Whilst a manual toothbrush can brush your teeth effectively, this is perhaps more easily achieved with an electric toothbrush. Many of these also have a built in pressure sensor which cuts out if you press too hard. This helps to stop you from damaging the enamel of your teeth through excessive pressure.
Sugar free sweets and chocolates
We all like to eat more sweets and chocolates at Christmas than is good for us but fortunately there is now a wide range of sugar free chocolate and other confectionery available. Why not buy these as a substitute for the more teeth damaging ones that contain high levels of sugar? Many of them taste just as good if not better.
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Losing a tooth can leave patients with a dilemma.
Unless we have neglected our teeth for some time, and acknowledge doing so; for most people, losing a tooth can come as something of a shock. Especially if it is a visible front tooth, we are not likely to want to live with a gap where a tooth should be, particularly when we smile!
Many patients come to see our Chelmsford dentists, concerned that they don’t want to wear dentures, often because their parents did and they saw how awkward this could make eating, or even sometimes speaking, whilst wearing them.
Although dentures now offer a realistic looking tooth replacement method, the problem of stability has not yet been entirely overcome, and probably never will be. Whilst they are OK for eating some foods, others will present problems and may cause them to become dislodged whilst you are eating; something which could prove embarrassing in certain social circles.
It is certainly no fun having little or no confidence that your teeth are going to remain where they should, and some people take the easy option of avoiding social eating rather than suffer the embarrassment of wobbly dentures.
Thankfully, this problem can now be remedied through the placing of dental implants.
Why dental implants?
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