Looking after teeth in lockdown

Although dental practices are now able to start seeing patients, the restrictions in place mean that many of you may still have to wait to see a dentist.

So, while you’re hanging on in there until your next hygiene appointment, here are just some of the ways you can look after your teeth during lockdown:

Do eat high-alkaline foods, such as tofu, almonds or avocado, as they will help to neutralise acidic food and drink that can erode tooth enamel

Do brush your teeth at least twice a day and start flossing if you don’t already – a recent YouGov poll found that 30% of Brits brushed their teeth either just once a day or less.

Do wait an hour after eating before brushing your teeth as it helps to avoid damage to your tooth enamel

Don’t crunch ice as it can cause microscopic cracks in the surface of the enamel, which could develop into more serious problems over time.

Don’t consume too many fizzy drinks as they are highly damaging

Don’t eat sticky, chewy sweets such as caramels or toffees as they can loosen fillings or brace wires

If you’ve had any dental concerns during quarantine, call us on 0117 905 9866 to arrange your appointment – we open on Monday 13th July.

Associate Dentist at Bristol Dental Practice

We are delighted to welcome Dr Emma Langridge as our new Associate Dentist at our Bristol dental practice.

Emma has a great passion for ethically-based, minimally invasive dentistry, providing bespoke treatment plans to suit each individual patient. She is a big believer that all her patients should be able to smile with confidence and will work with patients until these aims are achieved. This may be simply optimising dental health for some, or for others, this could be changing the appearance of teeth for a smile to be proud of.

Whatever your concern, she will be able to help. In a calm and relaxed setting, she will provide you with a first-class experience at CK Dental.

Since graduating from Cardiff University in 2014, Emma has undertaken a number of hospital posts, allowing her to obtain more advanced skills in the areas of Restorative Dentistry, Oral Surgery, and Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. She has since gone on to optimise these skills within the general practice setting, now providing a wide range of dental treatments from oral surgery through to cosmetic dentistry and facial aesthetics.

Emma is committed to providing the highest standards of treatment for all her patients, regularly attending a multitude of courses. Dentistry is an ever-changing world and Emma is looking forward to making use of the newer concepts of digital dentistry to enhance your patient experience.

Outside of work, Emma lives locally in Bristol. She is a self-confessed foodie and enjoys sampling the wide range of restaurants Bristol has to offer. Alongside this, she enjoys travel, fitness and Pilates.

Invisalign FAQs

When many of us think of teeth straightening our minds probably cast back to the train track braces that we were given at school. There were functional – they did the job, but they would never win any awards for beauty or subtlety. So, what happens if you didn’t opt for teeth straightening as a child and you now wish you had? Or your teeth have moved as you have got older and are now looking overcrowded or protruding? As an adult, the idea of steel braces doesn’t necessarily sound very appealing – however, there is a much more discrete option which has proven to be extremely popular.

Invisalign uses a series of aligners that are created to fit over your teeth. They are not attached in the same way traditional braces used to be, they slide in and out as you wish. If this sounds like the kind of thing you have been looking for, here at CK Dental we outline answers to some of the most common questions.

Invisalign FAQs: How are they made?

These clever aligners are made using 3D computer modelling, which scans your mouth and produces a bespoke fit.

Invisalign FAQs: How long do you need to wear them for?

Typically, you should expect to wear Invisalign braces for between nine and 18 months, although depending on the complexity of the work they need to do, in some rare cases they could be needed for up to three years. The time it takes Invisalign to work is very similar to traditional braces as the theory is essentially the same.

Invisalign FAQs: How long do you wear them each day?

Although you can take them in and out, it is recommended that you keep your aligners in for as much of the day as possible. They will work most effectively if they are kept in for as much of the day and night as you can manage. You need to take them out when eating and drinking, but if you can keep them in for 22 out of each 24-hour period, you’re doing well.

Invisalign FAQs: How much does Invisalign cost?

The cost is largely comparable to the traditional braces that are also still available – and are in fact more discrete than they used to be. Costs range from around £2,500 to £5,500, depending on what needs doing.

Invisalign FAQs: How can I be sure that I can trust Invisalign?

The concept has been in development for over two decades, and it has been growing in popularity over that time. It is reported that over 8 million people globally have benefited from this treatment, so it is definitely not in its infancy.

Invisalign FAQs: Can I make an appointment to learn more?

Yes of course! Come and talk to the team here at CK Dental in Bristol and we can help get you started on your Invisalign journey. Call 0117 905 9866 to arrange your Invisalign appointment.

dental treatment under general anaesthesia

Dental anxiety means more than just being a bit nervous about visiting the dentist. It can have a profound impact on your oral health and overall wellbeing. Recently, a leading UK dental law firm conducted a large-scale survey into the problem of dental anxiety.

Ninety-one per cent of those surveyed found they had experienced some of the following signs of anxiety – almost half experienced feelings of dread, a quarter suffered from a dry mouth, sweating or feeling sick and 15% had heart palpitations.

They were also asked what they specifically disliked about going to the dentist. Fear of pain, cost of treatment, needles and sound of drilling were all listed. People from Wales and the South West were particularly bothered by bad memories of a previous experience.

These bad experiences can be the result of experiencing pain or discomfort either during or after a dental procedure. Twenty-nine per cent stated that the dentist didn’t put them at ease.

Here at CK Dental, we are highly experienced at treating nervous patients and our practice is unique in offering both dental treatments both under sedation and general anaesthetic.

Dental treatment under general anaesthesia

Treatment can only be performed under a general anaesthetic in a hospital environment. CK Dental is located with the Nuffield Health Bristol Hospital, The Chesterfield in Clifton, making it one of the few dental practices in the UK that are able to offer dental treatment under general anaesthesia.

For severely dental phobic patients, this option represents the difference between being wholly incapable of visiting the dentist and being able to have a much-needed dental procedure. It is ideal for patients that have not found they are able to relax enough under conscious sedation to undergo treatment.

By providing this care in a hospital environment, you will be looked after by our anaesthetist, our lead dentist and a specially trained dental nurse and you will be further supported by the medical team available at the hospital.

For more information on the treatment options we offer dental phobic patients, including dental treatment under general anaesthesia, call 0117 905 9866.

dental anxiety treatments

If you have reservations about visiting the dentist then you are not alone, this is more common than you might think. Many of us are nervous about visiting a dental environment, which can present itself as fear, stress or general anxiety. For some, this nervousness can mean that we put off visiting or find excuses to delay routine check-ups. This can lead to long-term problems with your oral health, so it is important to try and find a way of getting past these fears.

The fact that you are here reading this piece is a positive sign – it indicates that despite your concerns you are looking for a way to overcome this in order to ensure you are giving your teeth, mouth and gums the specialist attention they require.

Depending on the severity of your dental anxiety, the symptoms may present themselves in a psychological or physical way – many will have a combination of these. Aside from the worry that is causing the problem in the first place, those with dental anxiety may demonstrate some or all of the following symptoms:

  • Sweating more than usual
  • Feeling faint (maybe even actually fainting)
  • Faster than normal heartbeat
  • Chest palpitations (brought on by the fast heartbeat)
  • Overt distress and unease
  •  Feeling or acting snappy/irritable/agitated

Here at CK Dental, we understand that even one of these symptoms is extremely unpleasant, and two or more can feel debilitating. With that in mind, it is no wonder that people’s anxiety can make them feel unable to attend their appointments.

How to address the problem of dental anxiety

The first thing to understand is the implications of allowing dental anxiety to stand in the way of your appointments. Your oral health will begin to suffer over time without regular check-ups. If you develop a problem with your teeth, mouth or gums, then if it is addressed quickly there is a greater chance that it will not develop into something more serious.

Not only that, if you allow your anxiety to keep you away from the dentist then it becomes a ‘vicious cycle’ – once you miss one appointment is it easier to miss another and another. The longer you stay away the harder it will be when you really need to see a dentist.

There are many ways in which we can help you overcome your concerns about visiting the dentist, so why not pop in for a relaxed and informal chat with staff ahead of your appointment to help put you at ease. Staff will be able to talk you through some of the techniques we use here at CK Dental to help patients feel at ease. Not only that, we really listen to our patients to understand what their concerns are. If we understand what is troubling you then we can work hard to make you feel as comfortable as possible.

We also offer dental treatment under sedation and dental treatment under general anaesthetic. General anaesthesia can only be administered in a hospital environment and CK Dental, which is located within Nuffield Health Bristol Hospital, is one of the few dental clinics in the UK that are able to offer this procedure.

Call us on 0117 905 9866 to arrange a consultation to discuss treatment options for dental phobic patients.

dental phobia options

Feeling nervous about visiting the dentist is something that can affect children or adults and it can stem from a wide variety of factors. Depending on the root cause of the problem and the age of the patient, different tools and techniques can be tried out in order to try and offer the necessary reassurance to overcome this.

If a child has had a bad dental experience while young (for example having a tooth knocked out and needing treatment, having an oral injection that caused pain) then the memory of this may remain with them into adulthood.

For adults, the cause of dental phobia may be due to a number of reasons:

  • A very common reason for these feelings is due to the perceived lack of control in the situation, some patients report feeling vulnerable in the dentist’s chair which leaves them feeling agitated and anxious
  • Some struggle to trust dentists (and possibly other medical practitioners too)
  • Some may also have had a negative experience in the past which has left them ill at ease with dentistry in general,
  • Others may have suffered from a head or neck injury which has left them feeling uncomfortable with the positioning required for the dentist to access their mouth, or just generally concerned with having more treatment in that area,
  • If there is another condition that patients are suffering with (such as acrophobia or claustrophobia) then this can compound the issue.

Encouragingly, many adults who have suffered from dental anxiety in the past report that finding a dentist who is understanding and sympathetic to their feelings helps enormously in terms of finding a way to overcome how they feel. Here at CK Dental our team appreciates the challenges that anxiety can cause patients and we are here to help in any way we can.

Looking at dental phobia coping methods

There are many tips and techniques that can be utilised to try and mitigate these feelings. Taking deep, rhythmic breaths can help slow down your heartbeat and help you feel more in control. This will also help reduce sweating and the feeling of palpitations caused by a racing heartbeat. Distractions are also an effective technique. Trying to focus the mind on something completely different can really help take your mind off your worries. Many patients suggest listing to music, audiobooks or podcasts; all of which are a good source of distraction in this situation.

If all else fails, then speaking to your GP about a referral to a psychologist can really help. Techniques such as CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) can help you understand more about what it is that is causing you so much concern, and experts can help with bespoke coping techniques.

Another option is dental treatment under sedation. Referred to sometimes as ‘twilight sedation’, conscious sedation involves putting the patient into a semi-conscious state that allows them to be comfortable throughout their treatment, whether it be a simple cleaning or a more invasive, lengthy dental procedure.

Here at CK Dental practice in Bristol, we are also one of the very few dental practices in the UK to offer dental treatment under general anaesthetic. General anaesthesia can only be administered in a hospital environment, which is why CK Dental, which is located within Nuffield Health Bristol Hospital, The Chesterfield in Clifton, is perfectly placed to offer this service.

Call us on 0117 905 9866 to arrange a consultation to discuss treatment options for dental phobic patients.

Bristol dental implants

Having a missing tooth, or more than one missing tooth, can be problematic in many ways. Not only can it affect confidence and leave people feeling unable or unwilling to smile properly, but it can also affect how people eat and speak as well.

If you are embarrassed by missing, broken or crooked teeth then you may be considering dental implants. Many of us have implants, in fact, they are so discrete that you would probably struggle to notice an implant nesting within someone’s smile.  As such, they are a popular, effective way of fixing some of the unsightly oral issues that some of us are grappling with.

An implant is inserted in place of a missing tooth. The tooth may have fallen out or you may agree with your dentist that it is best to remove a tooth and replace it with an implant. The ‘root’ of the implant is a screw which is fitted directly into the jaw bone and then the implant itself is attached to the screw. It is typically made of titanium, which is one of the strongest, non-corrosive metals. Over time the jaw bone will also grow around the screw, which holds it in place even more firmly. As such, within reason and with the correct care, this is a permanent solution to the problem.

There is plenty of advice that patients will be given by your dentist to help the implants bed in as effectively as possible in the hours following the surgery. There is a special antiseptic mouthwash that patients would need to use initially (morning and night) to ensure that the area remains free from infection. Also, they would be advised to wash with an oral salt bath after meals for the first week or so. Never the nicest thing to do, but salt is extremely effective at

Strong patient satisfaction

Overwhelmingly patients are delighted with implants. They address the aesthetic issue and offer a long-term fix that blends in very effectively with the natural teeth.

If this sounds like the kind of procedure that could help you achieve a more satisfying smile, then get in touch with the team here at CK Dental to talk through the options available to you. Call 0117 905 9866 to arrange a consultation.

Bristol Dentist

As we look forward to the new year – and with it our new year’s resolutions – the Oral Health Foundation is keen to encourage us to donate to the Save a Smile appeal, a charity which aims to help educate and inspire people to take better care of their oral hygiene.

As with all charities, the resources they need, the material they use, the ways in which they can share their messages and advice; all tale time and money to facilitate effectively. And that’s where you come in. Many people haven’t heard of the Save and Smile appeal, so here at Bristol dentist CK Dental we wanted to do our bit to help raise awareness of this worthy cause.

Chief Executive of the Oral Health Foundation Dr Nigel Carter explains that each donation “can help fund some of the programmes, campaigns and resources that provide everyone with the tools they need to properly take care of their oral health.” Dr Carter goes on to explain: “In 2020, we will focus on giving these issues the urgent attention they require to help improve the quality of life for millions. But we cannot do that without you.”

What can your donation help achieve?

Just a modest donation can help the Save a Smile charity produce leaflets and information that can be shared with community groups, educating about how to achieve and maintain a healthy smile. A larger donation enables community outreach care such as home visits to patients suffering from serious oral illness such as mouth cancer or can help produce materials that can be used to educate young people in our schools and colleges. A substantial donation can help the charity provide larger level education for patients in the greatest need, such as the elderly or those who have complicated medical needs and as such, need a different approach to help get these important messages across.

Whatever you feel willing and able to donate, your help will be welcome. And as many of us look to the new year as a way of giving something back after the inevitable excesses of Christmas, we wanted to help spread the word of the good work this charity is doing.

Bristol family dentistry

According to new research published recently, youngsters should only be drinking water or milk up until they are five years of age, due to the damage that regularly consuming other drinks can do to their teeth. According to the Healthy Drinks, Healthy Kids research, drinking things other than milk and water doesn’t only affect children’s teeth, but can negatively affect other areas of their health and overall well-being as well.

There are a number of concerns with other drinks, even those that are marketed especially as being for children, but the sugar content is the concern that keeps rearing its head. In fact, “a panel of scientists have issued the new nutritional guidelines which suggest children should not be given any drink with sugar or other sweeteners in it.”

Here at CK Dental in Bristol, we concur with the report’s conclusion that the nutritional benefits that a combination of milk and water can bring, means there is no need to consume other drinks at all.

Benefits of milk

Milk is what children begin drinking when they are first born and there is a very good reason that parents are encouraged to keep milk in their children’s diet for as long as possible. Full fat milk is packed with good calories, calcium which helps bones and teeth and also important proteins. There are a variety of other vitamins and minerals found within milk that help their bodies and minds develop.

Benefits of water

Water is one of the few drinks which does not contain acidity, therefore it is not damaging tooth enamel. As well as the hydration credentials of water, there are no calories and no sugar in water, so it really can do children no harm at all.

Some parents hold the misconception that as long as they are brushing their children’s teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste then it doesn’t matter too much if they are drinking sugary drinks. Although following a thorough oral hygiene routine is definitely recommended, it cannot guarantee to fix all problems associated with the consumption of sugary drinks.

Some of the damage will start to take place between meals, so brushing at the start of the day and before bed will only be able to help so much.

For more advice on good oral health for children, call 0117 905 9866 to book an appointment at our Bristol family dentistry clinic.

mouth cancer

Last month was Mouth Cancer Action Month, an awareness-raising initiative which aims to educate people more about mouth cancer and also help prevent and treat the disease.

According to the Oral Health Foundation, as many as 8,300 people in the UK each year are diagnosed with mouth cancer. This number is increasing year on year and is responsible for more deaths than testicular cancer and cervical cancer combined. The difference, however, is that both cervical cancer and testicular cancer have benefitted from some very effective awareness-building activity, which has really helped educate individuals about what to look out for in terms of symptoms. Mouth Cancer Action Month hopes to raise awareness of mouth cancer in a similar way.

In terms of awareness building, as with many nasty illnesses, the sooner you detect that something isn’t quite right, the sooner you can get it checked out – and if necessary, begin treatment. Tackling mouth cancer early gives people the best chance of survival.

The objectives of Mouth Cancer Awareness Month include:

  • Helping people know and recognise the symptoms of mouth cancer
  • Encouraging them to take greater awareness and responsibility for their oral
  • Encouraging people to regularly check for unusual changes inside their mouths
  • Being proactive if you believe you have found something unusual and get this checked out by a dentist quickly

The kind of unusual changes in your mouth that you should be looking out for includes red or white patches in the cheeks, mouth or throat, mouth ulcers that you just can’t seem to shift, or lumps/swollen areas in the mouth, head or neck area. If you notice any of these then don’t wait for your usual dental check-up, book in as quickly as possible. Best case scenario
is that it will be nothing to worry about but put your mind at rest by getting it checked by an expert.

It is widely recognised that smoking is one of the biggest contributing factors to mouth, throat, neck and many other cancers, so if you are smoker it is sensible to be even more vigilant.

For more advice or if you have any concerns, call 0117 905 9866 to book an appointment at our Bristol dental clinic.