Returning to the dentist after a long absence

gum disease checks

What to expect when you arrange an appointment with our Chelmsford dentist after time away

Ideally, patients should see a dentist at Blue Sky Dental every six months or so, sometimes more frequently if needed; as may be the case with diabetics for example.

Most people do manage to do this but sometimes we can drop out of this routine. Perhaps an appointment has to be cancelled for a legitimate reason and is not re-arranged. If we are happy with our teeth and are not having any problems, this can lead to some patients simply not rebooking their appointment, often meaning a number of years without professional monitoring of our teeth and gums.

Whilst missing appointments isn’t recommended, if you are fortunate not to need to make an emergency appointment for a painful tooth or other similar problem, some time may pass before you are prompted to see a dentist again. What then, should you expect when you return?

Your return

What we find when we examine your mouth after a time away will, of course, depend on your lifestyle. If you brush and floss your teeth regularly, don’t smoke and keep your sugar consumption low, we are likely to find less problems than if you do the opposite. Any return appointment will start with a thorough examination, often including x-rays, to determine the health of your teeth and gums and what action should be taken next.

Restorations

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Time For An Oral Health Spring Clean?

Just some of the steps you can take to give your teeth a spring sparkle in Chelmsford!

With Spring well and truly here, although you may not know it from looking out of your window, it can be a good time to get rid of the old and bring in the new.

This often happens with a spring clean of the home and perhaps a new wardrobe too. We aren’t, of course, suggesting that you get rid of your teeth, but there are a number of ways that we can help you to give them a ‘freshen up’ ready for the (hopefully) sunnier days ahead.

Oral health check

Let’s start with the most obvious. Although many of you are perhaps already patients of Blue Sky Dental; if you aren’t and have not seen a dentist for some time, now is a good time to register at our Chelmsford practice. There is no point in trying to cosmetically improve the appearance your teeth if they are unhealthy. If we can detect any problems in their early stages, treatment is likely to be less intensive than if a problem is allowed to develop.

Hygienist care

Even if you see your dentist regularly, if you don’t also see the hygienist then you are missing out on the opportunity to have the best possible oral health. However well you clean your teeth at home, bacteria will collect on the teeth and the gum line, forming a hard layer known as tartar. This can only be removed effectively using a special tool which shatters it. A toothbrush will simply not do the job. As a bonus, the high speed brush that is applied during your cleaning session will also remove some of the staining from the tooth surface.

Teeth whitening

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Cavities and Decay – Are They Really Inevitable?

white teeth and dental mirror

Some tips on how to reduce the need for dental fillings in Chelmsford.

Most of us probably have a filling or two. We tend to treat these as a minor inconvenience and something that is almost inevitable at some point in our life.

Whilst it is true that a breakage can be caused by an accident, and little can be done about that, the majority of fillings are needed due to a cavity caused by tooth decay. These are preventable with a little care and changes in our habits.

Sugar everywhere

It used to be that sugar was in sweets and when we added it to food. These days, sugar is everywhere, including in the vast majority of convenience foods, whether sweet or savoury. This means that we consume far more sugar than is good for us. The modern habit of snacking throughout the day also means that our teeth are continually bombarded with doses of sugar too.

Try to cut down on sugar, and certainly avoid some of the more damaging culprits such as fizzy drinks. Try also to eat at meal times and minimise any snacking. This will give your saliva time to wash away much of the sugar from your teeth and gums.

Clean your teeth – getting the basics right

Brush your teeth both morning and the last thing before going to bed. Once you have cleaned your teeth at night, do not eat or drink anything except for water. Make sure your toothbrush is not worn out and use a fluoride toothpaste. These simple tips will provide the basis of good oral care for our Chelmsford patients.

Dental floss

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Can Healthy And Attractive Teeth Improve Our Mental Well Being?

smile after cosmetic dentistry

The benefits of self-improvement

Mental health issues are finally being given the serious attention that they deserve. Too many people suffer from this issue, in varying degrees. There can be many causes of it, both medical and societal, and often the causes have no easy answers.

We would certainly not make the claim that having healthy and great looking teeth will solve mental health issues, but we do believe that they can make us feel better about ourselves, and often help us to gain more confidence. These factors can lead to a happier and more fulfilling life.

Daily effects

If we have a sensitive tooth, we may think twice about joining others for a hot coffee or cold beer, perhaps even avoiding social gatherings more than we normally would. Poor quality teeth that make eating more difficult can also cause us to avoid parties etc. This type of social isolation is likely to worsen our self esteem and may even lead us to become more withdrawn.

What we eat is also likely to affect how we feel. Although we may enjoy food for its flavour, its main purpose is to supply the body with important nutrients that keep us healthy and give us the energy to go about our daily lives. If our teeth are so poor that we restrict what we eat, we may well find ourselves lacking in some important nutrients.

Children

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Caring For Your Newly Treated Tooth

Dental restorations can extend the life of a damaged tooth – but please look after them!

We all hope that our teeth will stay strong and healthy if we take good care of them, and certainly, regular cleaning and dental checks will help to increase the chances of this. Few of us will escape ever having to have treatment though, and restorations such as a crown or root canal treatment usually means that we are able to keep our natural teeth for longer, rather than have to have them extracted.

Although restorations are generally made from artificial materials such as ceramic or porcelain which cannot decay, this does not mean that we do not need to look after them.

In today’s Blue Sky Dental blog, we will take a look at some of the common restorations that we carry out at our Chelmsford practice. We will also offer aftercare advice at the time of a procedure and are happy to answer any questions about them at any time.

Fillings

Whether you have had an amalgam or a tooth coloured filling, it is always worth remembering that they are there. A filled tooth is usually a strong tooth, but this may depend on the size of the cavity that was filled. Larger cavities will naturally need larger fillings and will probably not be as strong as where a smaller filling has been used. Whilst a filling should enable you to eat most foods as you usually would, it is always worth avoiding biting down too hard.

You should always clean a filled tooth as you would your normal teeth. Minute gaps can sometimes appear between the filling and the tooth and whilst these may not cause discomfort, at least initially, bacteria can still enter. Keeping this risk at a minimum with regular brushing is important, as are regular six monthly checks at our Chelmsford dental practice, so that we can keep an eye on the condition of any fillings you might have.

Crowns

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Are Fruit Teas Ruining The Teeth Of Our Chelmsford Patients?

Blue Sky Dental in Chelmsford

‘Healthy’ foods and drinks are not always as beneficial as they seem.

We are constantly being encouraged to eat more healthily, reducing the amount of fats and sugars in our diet. Unfortunately, many of these unhealthy foods and drinks actually taste good, and that, combined with sometimes confusing advice, means that perhaps not as many of us change our diet as much as we should.

Whilst there are undoubted benefits to switching to a diet that is higher in fruit, vegetables and other healthy foodstuffs, even these are often not without their drawbacks.

Fruit teas

One recent ‘healthy’ alternative to our normal diet that has hit the news is our growing love of fruit teas. These now come in a wide variety of flavours and can offer a great pick me up with their refreshing tastes. Despite this though, recent studies have shown that drinking fruit teas can be very damaging to our teeth. The reason for this, it seems, is the actual fruit content of the teas. This especially applies where the fruits involved are citric, such as oranges and lemons. These contain high levels of acids that can cause significant enamel erosion if drunk too often.

It is not just the fact that we drink these that seems to be the problem though, but rather HOW we drink them. Instead of sipping and swallowing the fruit teas, many of us are allowing the tea to remain in our mouths for a short while before swallowing it. This allows the acids in the teas to come into contact with our teeth for much longer than if we swallowed it immediately. Over time, the damage to the enamel of our teeth can be quite significant.

Restoring damaged enamel

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The Finer Points Of Cleaning Our Teeth

Don’t be distracted by the minutiae .. Getting the basics right is essential.

Some of you may have seen, or read about, the recent debate on social media, as to whether you should put toothpaste on a wet or dry toothbrush?

With access to the whole world just a few keystrokes away, it is now very easy to put forward any point of view that you wish, and quite often have it believed, however strange it is!

In this instance, it was simply a question that spiralled and even made the national papers. In the opinion of the dentists at Blue Sky Dental, this particular matter is of no real relevance and predominantly a matter of choice (although if you have a dry mouth, wetting the brush might be a good idea). It is important though, not to get sidelined by these ‘fringe’ issues and make sure that you have the basics right.

There are three key things that you need to do to help make sure that your teeth and gums remain healthy; brush your teeth, use dental floss and have regular professional monitoring by one of our Chelmsford dentists. Of course diet also plays a part but we’ll cover that elsewhere in our blog.

Brushing

Brushing your teeth twice a day, both morning and the last thing at night before going to bed, is the bedrock of good oral health care. This only takes a few minutes out of your day, so you should make sure to get it right. Use a toothbrush that is no older than three months, use a fluoride toothpaste and brush in a circular motion fairly gently. There is no need to use excessive pressure when brushing, and this may actually cause enamel damage and gum recession if you do. To gain the maximum protective benefit from the fluoride, you should spit, but not rinse, once you have finished brushing.

Dental floss

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Dental Veneers – The Original ‘Hollywood Smile’

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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Clear Braces For A Pleasing Teeth Straightening Experience

Invisalign brace

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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What is “high quality” specialist dental care?

Blue Sky Dental in Chelmsford

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.

Cosmetic treatments

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