The Ultimate Christmas Smile Survival Guide From Abbey Road Dental!

Keep your smile healthy over Christmas and avoid an emergency visit to the dentist

Dentist Dr Diana SpencerChristmas is a wonderful time of year when all of us enjoy kicking back and enjoying parties and memory making with family and friends.

Despite Christmas being the time of year we all smile plenty, it is actually a really high risk time of year for oral health too.

Alcohol, partying, stress, naughty foods galore and other risk factors all contribute to an increase in dental issues over the festive period.

So to help you maintain your beautiful smile over the holidays, here is your ultimate Christmas smile survival guide from Abbey Road Dental:

Don’t Take Any Unnecessary Risks

It is so important that you do not crack nuts or open bottles with your teeth. If reading that this is the kind of thing that happens over Christmas shocked you, you might be surprised to know lots of injuries to the teeth and gums occur during the holidays due to these kinds of risks. Instead of using your teeth, it’s a good idea to use the correct tools for the job!

Take It Easy On The Naughty Foods Or Eat Them During Mealtimes

If you can take it easy on the pastries, chocolates, cakes and other Christmas treats, your oral health will benefit. There are so many things that are consumed over Christmas that can cause issues with the teeth. If we can’t persuade you to relax on the indulgence, could you consider only eating the naughtiest foods during mealtimes? One of the biggest issues with consuming naughty foods at Christmas is how the teeth are constantly exposed to sugars and acids because we all graze. Eating indulgent foods over mealtimes and especially following those episodes with water to rinse and perhaps sugar-free gum, limits that window of damage and helps your teeth and gums.

Try To Maintain Your Oral Health Routine

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SmileFast Dental Veneers

A spotlight on the latest treatments at Abbey Road Dental, St John’s Wood

White teeth after cosmetic dentistryAbbey Road Dental is proud to offer the most up-to-date dental treatments for our patients and we offer restorative, general and cosmetic services, as well as a range of additional treatments that commonly fall into various categories.

We are always looking to enhance our selection of services to patients with the latest that dentistry has to offer, which is why we are excited to now list SmileFast dental veneers amongst our broad range of cosmetic treatments.

SmileFast Dental Veneers At Abbey Road Dental

SmileFast veneers is a ‘cutting edge’ dental transformation process we are proud to offer at our modern local dental clinic. The treatment has been deemed a revolution in smile makeovers, and that is because many treatments can actually be completed in just 60 minutes. A new smile in under an hour! We couldn’t believe it either! Patients can get affordable, fantastic results quickly, leaving the clinic with their beautiful new smile without having to wait several sessions.

How Does SmileFast Work?

SmileFast is truly groundbreaking in its technique, bringing together various elements in the discipline of cosmetic dentistry.

We can help you to quickly see how your new smile will look, as well as providing a detailed plan of how it works, all following a consultation process to check suitability. We will only ever offer the treatment to patients who are able to get the most out of how it works. If there are any issues or outstanding dental health problems we can offer alternative treatments and referrals where appropriate.

Once we have agreed that you are suitable we can take photos and information before using 3D technology to prepare your smile for the transformation. We can design the perfect smile for you, and place a custom set of composite veneers in just one application. The veneers fit over the front social six front teeth enabling you to walk away with a stunning smile extremely quickly.

Teeth Whitening In Combination With SmileFast

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Confused By Dental Jargon?

Common Dental Terms Explained By Your St John’s Wood Dentist

Here at Abbey Road Dental in NW8 we make a huge effort to ensure that we explain any dental terms we use as well as we possibly can to all of our patients.

We also try to answer any questions you may have, as well as trying to avoid using confusing dental jargon when it isn’t necessary.

However, we want all our patients to feel empowered with their dental care and a great start to that is information. So to help you feel more ‘in the know’ about the world of dentistry and the words used, here are some of the most common dental terms explained:

Cosmetic Dentistry

Cosmetic dentistry is a type of dentistry that involves making the teeth look better, whether that is with adult straightening, teeth whitening, veneers, crowns or cosmetic bonding. Often cosmetic dentistry is done in conjunction with other areas of dentistry as part of a complete smile makeover.

NHS Dentist

An NHS dentist is a dentist that may offer private services, but they also offer NHS services. If you are registered with an NHS dentist you can have treatment according to the NHS price band system, however some treatment may fall under private treatment, such as cosmetic dentistry. If you join an NHS dentist they will clarify the type of treatment you need and whether it comes under NHS price bands before treating you.

Private Dentist

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Jaw Pain

What are the main causes?

head and jaw painJaw pain is a common issue for many and yet most people don’t associate it with dental issues and don’t think to mention it to the dentist.

In fact, jaw pain and dental issues go hand-in-hand and one can cause the other.

If you are experiencing jaw pain you might be getting a wide range of potential symptoms in the jaw joint, such as:

  • Throbbing
  • Sharp pains
  • Earache
  • Headaches
  • Tingling
  • Aching

You might feel the pain when you eat or talk, or just all the time. It might have started all of a sudden or begun as mild discomfort and then developed over time. It could have begun after a certain procedure or injury. Understanding the cause of the problem is really important so you can get out of pain, and so that the problem doesn’t cause further issues with your jaw and other parts of the oral cavity.

Here are some causes of jaw pain and what they might feel like:

Clenching & Grinding Of The Teeth

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Dry Mouth

How It Can Affect Your Oral Health

Dry mouth is an oral condition that is often overlooked, despite the fact it can be extremely uncomfortable and cause a whole host of oral issues.

At Abbey Road Dental in St John’s Wood, we understand that there are lots of factors that affect your oral health, not just the way the teeth are cared for, or indeed lifestyle. Many different things can affect oral health including medications, illness, age, pregnancy and more.

We always have a broad approach to diagnostics to ensure that we consider each and every potential factor in any pain or issue a person is having with their oral health. Dry mouth is often a very simple issue that causes many complex problems and it can be caused by many different things. By understanding why dry mouth is present we can treat you accordingly and stop it doing any additional damage. We can also help you feel as comfortable as possible whilst you are affected by the problem.

What Is Dry Mouth?

Dry mouth means that you don’t have the amount of saliva in your mouth needed to keep your mouth lubricated as it is supposed to be. Everybody experiences dry mouth differently, but common symptoms can include:

  • A dry mouth or throat
  • A mouth or throat that feels sticky, as though the saliva is thick
  • Issues speaking
  • Issues swallowing
  • Issues speaking
  • A tongue that goes completely dry
  • Painful sore and cracked lips
  • Tooth decay that occurs more frequently
  • Unpleasant breath
  • Mouth ulcers
  • Issues with aggravated gums

Why Dry Mouth Happens

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Your First Hygienist Appointment

What to Expect At Abbey Road Dental In St John’s Wood

Here at Abbey Road Dental we are proud to have an exceptional dental hygienist on our team who works with us to provide the complete range of oral health services we offer.

Understanding the services offered by the hygienist is important for patients who may benefit from those kinds of treatments.

Sometimes we may refer you to a hygienist as part of a treatment plan, or you can independently book the hygienist yourself for certain treatments.

So, What Is A Dental Hygienist?

A dental hygienist focuses on preventative oral care and gum disease and helps patients in the quest to maintain good gum health and keep all their natural teeth long-term.

One of their key activities is to remove plaque and tartar on your teeth. If the plaque and tartar is not removed properly it can cause you to develop gum disease which is the leading cause of tooth loss in the UK. You may also suffer from tooth decay, which can also lead to tooth loss. The appointment will also include useful education for the patient to help them clean their teeth as well as possible between visits.

What Should I Expect From My First Hygienist Visit At Abbey Road Dental?

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Your Tongue And Oral Soft Tissues

An Oral Health Spotlight From Abbey Road Dental

Often when it comes to oral health, the spotlight from the general public is on the teeth and gums; at least for most of the time. This is understandable as the teeth and gums are primary structures within the mouth.

However, the teeth and gums are not the only important structures and the tongue and soft tissues in and around the mouth are incredibly important too. Although dentistry is often focused on the teeth and gums, the entire mouth requires careful care and attention to ensure you can enjoy a comfortable, functioning mouth day-to-day.

To help you understand more about these often overlooked parts of your mouth and their role in oral health, today Abbey Road Dental shines the spotlight on your tongue and other oral soft tissues.

Oral Soft Tissues And Tongue – What Are They?

Lots of areas inside your mouth are categorised as oral soft tissues, with many having parts that are internal and external. Your cheeks and lips are classed as oral soft tissues, and the roof of your mouth, your throat and the area under your tongue are all part of the oral cavity. The tongue itself is a muscular organ that is covered in tissue and tiny bumps and plays an important part at the beginning of the digestion process. The gums are also counted as the soft tissues of the mouth and they have their own category of care within dentistry called periodontics.

Oral Cancer

When it comes to oral cancer, all oral areas can show symptoms and signs of the disease. When the dentist at Abbey Road Dental does an oral cancer check as part of your checkup, they will look for any signs of abnormalities in the mouth. They will look around the lips, mouth and tongue for sores, white patches and general areas of irritated tissue. They may ask you about any areas they think could be suspicious, to see if perhaps a sore has not healed, or a patch of irritated or white skin which has been present for a while. In the instance where an area of the mouth looks suspicious the dentist might refer you to your GP or the hospital for further investigations. The sooner that oral cancer is diagnosed, the better the prognosis, which is one of the reasons regular checkups with your dentist are so important.

Injuries To The Soft Tissues And Tongue

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Understanding The 6 Stages Of Tooth Decay

Get closer to your teeth with Abbey Road Dental!

One of the main reasons teeth hurt is because of dental decay. This begins when enamel starts to break down and tiny areas of decay develop on the surface of the tooth.

“Bad” bacteria naturally present in the mouth create an acid bi-product which in turn eats away at the teeth, starting the process.

At some stages of decay, the teeth can be recovered with appropriate dental work coupled with improved oral hygiene. However, if it is left too late, a different level of dental restoration may be needed to restore teeth. Indeed, if left too long, it may not be possible to save the tooth.

It is a really good idea to understand the stages of decay so that you can be aware of your own oral health, and how to prevent things from getting any worse, alongside the guidance of your dentist.

Stage 1

The very first stage of tooth decay is when little white patches appear on the very outer layer of the teeth. This happens because the tooth is starting to lose calcium, and plaque has started to build up. As the bacteria in the mouth produce more acid bi-product, the tooth begins to slowly demineralise. This stage of decay is a really important warning sign and can even be reversed or stopped in its tracks by the correct treatment. Your NW8 dentist can speak to you about caring for your teeth and stopping the progression of any decay. As well as treatment, we will also emphasise the importance of an excellent dental hygiene regimen.

Stage 2

During the second stage of decay the lower level of enamel begins to deteriorate and there is no decay reversal available at this stage. The enamel and minerals will degrade and cause a small area of damage. The decay will continue to cause damage at this stage and the tooth will weaken and become susceptible to breaking. In the event that your tooth breaks you should always seek dental attention quickly.

Stage 3

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Dental Phobia

Don’t Let It Stop You From Having A Comfortable And Beautiful Smile.

Fear of the dentistDental phobia is extremely common, and yet when you suffer from it yourself, it can feel like you’re the only person in the world absolutely paralysed with fear at the thought of visiting the dentist. How can other people just happily visit their local dentist every six months without a second thought?

Here at Abbey Dental Road we completely understand how you feel. We have successfully helped people in different places on theĀ  phobia spectrum, some with mild nerves about the dentist, some with extreme dental phobias. Our clinic in St John’s Wood has helped many dental phobic people get in that chair and get the treatment they deserve.

Our primary perspective on dental phobia is understanding that the reasons for it are different for everybody, and that there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach.

Everybody has a different reason, or a combination or reasons for feeling so afraid of the dentist. For some people, they don’t even know where their phobia started. Regardless of how a dental phobia starts, the fact is that it prevents a person from getting the oral health support that they deserve. So it is incredibly important to sensitively and compassionately treat a person for their phobia first, so that the appropriate oral care can follow.

More Than A Fear Of Pain

Most people who are phobic of the dentist are not just ‘worried’ about their dental visit. Dental fear or anxiety can come with a wide range of symptoms such as:

  • Shaking
  • Issues with breathing
  • Nausea
  • Lightheadedness or even fainting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Panic attacks
  • Deep anxiety

A dental phobia can cause a wide range of symptoms that a person may experience just at the thought of going to the dentist. Often these symptoms are accompanied by a deep level of shame and embarrassment, exacerbated if the person’s oral health has deteriorated because they have avoided the dentist for so long. Worrying about what people think can often be an additional barrier preventing a person from even considering speaking to anybody about their problem. They worry about being judged, or that nobody will understand how afraid they are of the dentist.

What Abbey Road Dental Can Do To Help….

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The Spotlight On Dental Implants

Advanced replacement of missing teeth in St John’s Wood.

Dental Implants are considered by many to be the ‘gold standard’ in tooth replacement and we are extremely proud to offer them at our NW8 clinic in St John’s Wood.

Although dental implants have been around for a long time, it is only within the last decade that the treatment has truly been refined. An incredibly effective tooth replacement solution, implants look and feel as similar to natural teeth as is currently possible within modern dentistry.

If you have missing teeth and want to know how you can restore your smile with the latest in treatment technology, please take a look at our spotlight on dental implants here in Abbey Road.

What Are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are a replacement for a missing tooth root, providing strong support for the tooth replacement at the gum level. The devices are made using titanium and are designed to be extremely durable and as similar to a natural tooth root as possible.

The implants are usually placed following a detailed consultation, and then left to bond with the jawbone for a few months, sometimes more. Once they have bonded with the jawbone the full restoration can be completed, and the implants themselves can last a lifetime if cared for properly.

Who Provides Dental Implant Treatment At Abbey Road Dental?

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