Regular visits to the dentist: the key to maintaining good oral health

How often do you visit the dentist for a routine check-up? At Harley Street Dental Clinic we generally advice that you should have a check-up every six months, to ensure your mouth remains healthy and your smile stays happy. Every patient’s needs vary, of course, and some people may need to attend more frequently, whilst others may need to come less often.

oral-healthYou should always follow your dentist’s advice – and it goes without saying that if you experience anything unusual in between standard appointments, you should come to see your dentist at Harley Street straight away.

The benefits of general dental check-ups

Many common conditions, such as tooth decay and gum disease, have few early warning signs that are noticeable at home. At Harley Street Dental Clinic we use the latest technology and techniques so that we can spot the early signs of these problems before they become serious. Your dentist may use x-rays to help in their diagnosis. This often enables them to spot decayed teeth that have yet to produce any outward symptoms.

As with most things, with dental health problems the sooner they are spotted, the easier they are to treat.

At Harley Street Dental Clinic we are committed to preventative dentistry – stopping problems before they start. Regular visits to the dentist and the hygienist for a professional tooth clean are essential steps in this process.

When you register as a new patient at our Harley Street clinic, your dentist will follow a detailed nine-step plan to assess your dental health, diagnose any problems, and treat them as appropriate.

This involves:

  1. Complete examination of your teeth, gums and surrounding structures
  2. Take x-rays as necessary
  3. Ask about any dental health issues you may have
  4. Discuss how diet and habits such as smoking can affect oral health
  5. Review your teeth cleaning habits
  6. Thoroughly explain any further treatment you may need, including hygienist appointments and referral to specialist colleagues as appropriate
  7. Provide you with a fully-customised treatment plan
  8. Answer your questions
  9. If you need no further treatment, let you know when to book your next check-up.

Orthodontics without metal braces: Harley Street treatment options

Modern orthodontics offers a number of subtle ways to straighten your teeth, without a glint of metal in sight. At Harley Street Dental Clinic we have three in-house orthodontic specialists, who provide treatment to children, adults, and teenagers.

metal-braces-harley-streetHere at our Harley Street clinic, we are always keen to point out the benefits of teeth straightening treatment to patients of all ages. An increasing number of adults are turning to orthodontics, whether they missed out on having treatment during their younger years or underwent treatment only to experience adult relapse – teeth moving back to their old position, often due to failure to keep up with the retention stage.

We also recognise that a lot of adults are put off by the thought of wearing metal “train-track” braces, which is why at Harley Street Dental Clinic we offer a number of more discreet routes to straighter teeth.

Orthodontics as an adult can. . .

  • Help you to maintain good dental hygiene by reducing hard to reach areas where plaque can build up, making your teeth easier to clean and cutting your risk of gum disease and dental
  • Better protect protruding front teeth from accidental damage.
  • Improve your bite (how your jaws meet), reducing excessive wear on some teeth, and making it easier to eat a healthy diet.
  • Help in some cases of bruxism.
  • Boost your smile’s appearance, and with it your body image and self-esteem.

Harley Street Dental Clinic offers treatment with both braces and aligners. Your orthodontist will help you to choose the most appropriate appliance for your needs.

Harley Street discreet orthodontics

Lingual braces

Braces remain the staple of orthodontics. They can be used for everything from mild cosmetic correction to more extensive treatment involving the bite. Lingual braces are made from metal but nobody will notice them in everyday life because they are fitted to the rear (lingual) surfaces of the teeth.

Invisalign

This system of clear, removable aligners can treat a range of conditions in between six to 12 months, with minimal impact on your lifestyle. Maintaining dental hygiene during treatment is easy – you just pop the aligners out to clean.

Overcome fear of the dentist for good

Has fear of the dentist prevented you from getting much-needed treatment? If you are anxious, nervous, or even phobic about dental visits, we urge you to get in touch with Harley Street Dental Clinic, because we believe that we can help you to get back to oral health without it being a traumatic experience.

nervous-patientsBeing scared of the dentist is very common, and in the world of modern dentistry clinicians tend to be much more sympathetic to and understanding of nervous patients’ needs than they might have been in the past. The team at Harley Street Dental Clinic is exceptionally experienced in dealing with nervous, anxious, and phobic patients, and we guarantee that you will be treated with the utmost care, respect, and understanding at all times.

About one in six UK adults identifies as being a nervous dental patient. There are numerous causes given for this fear; sometimes a patient has had a traumatic experience during childhood, whilst in other cases a trigger such as the sight of a needle, the sound of a drill, or the thought of being out of control can be responsible.

A lot of people also fear being judged if they have less than perfect oral health, or fear what ongoing treatment may be required. At our Harley Street clinic we know that being judgemental is nothing but counter-productive, making an already anxious patient want to run down the street in shame and never set foot in a dental practice again.

Rest assured: at Harley Street Dental Clinic we will never judge you if you have less than perfect oral health. A good dentist wants only to help you get that health back and to maintain it in the future, and enjoys nothing more than seeing a once anxious patient with a beautiful, healthy smile.

Your dentist will discuss all the options available to you in a tranquil private space away from the dentist’s chair. You may benefit from bringing music to listen to or a film to watch, or could opt for either inhalation or intravenous sedation. Each patient’s needs are different, and we are committed to finding the best way to help you.

Why visiting the dentist should be part of your child’s regular routine

“When should my child start visiting the dentist?” It’s a common question likely to have been asked by most first-time parents. At Harley Street Dental Clinic we recommend bringing baby in from the age of 12 months. By that time they should have some if not all of their milk teeth, and should be able to cooperate with the dentist to let them look inside their mouth (with a bit of friendly encouragement from Mum or Dad!).

children-dentistryOf course, we are aware that all children develop differently – it’s not uncommon for babies to be born with some of their teeth present. Should you have any concerns about your child’s teeth before the age of 12 months, or you want advice on how to look after the teeth of a very young baby, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with the team here at Harley Street Dental Clinic. We will be more than happy to help.

We are lucky to benefit from the services of a paediatric dental specialist, Professor Raman Bedi, at our Harley Street practice. Professor Bedi is the chairman of the Global Child Dental Fund and co-chair of a global expert committee on the prevention and management of caries. He is the head of a specialist children’s dentistry team here at Harley Street and, perhaps of most importance to new parents, he and his team are highly skilled in working with young patients.

Professor Bedi will take the time and the care to build up a real rapport and a relationship of trust with every child, ensuring that visits to the dental practice are quickly viewed as fun, and the dentist as a friendly face that your child looks forward to seeing for check-ups.

At our Harley Street clinic we believe in preventative dentistry, and offer a range of preventative treatments for children, including fluoride varnish and fissure sealant. However, should your child be found to need a filling, their dentist will use a laser in place of the traditional drill, which is a much less stressful experience for child and parent alike.

How a cosmetic dentist can use porcelain veneers to create a smile makeover

A cosmetic dentist can use porcelain veneers to improve the look of your smile in just a few short appointments. Veneers are one of the most popular treatments at Harley Street Dental Clinic, and can be used for anything from making a single, permanently discoloured match your other teeth to producing a full smile makeover.

porcelain-veneersVeneers have a long and illustrious history. They were first invented by a Hollywood cosmetic dentist, designed to give actors amazing smiles for film roles. But as they were stuck on with denture adhesive, they would usually drop off after a few takes. Those veneers were not built to last.

The modern veneers available from your Harley Street cosmetic dentist are a different matter. Rapid advances in the cosmetic dental world, coupled with the development of greatly improved dental bonding agents and ceramics, means that modern veneers are now durable, long-lasting, and as natural as they are beautiful in appearance.

Harley Street veneers

At our Harley Street clinic your cosmetic dentist can use veneers to correct a number of dental problems. These include permanent discolouration, minor alignment and spacing issues, small chips and cracks. The veneers of the modern age should last more than a decade – so long as you look after them and visit your dentist and hygienist regularly, of course.

So, what exactly is a veneer? It is a very thin, hand-crafted shell of material (porcelain, in most cases) that your dentist bonds over the front surfaces of your front teeth to enhance their appearance. One of the biggest advantages of veneers is that they require very little preparatory work on your teeth.

When you come to our Harley Street dental clinic for a veneer consultation, your cosmetic dentist will check your oral health and prepare your teeth to receive your veneers by removing a very thin amount of enamel.

Your cosmetic dentist will ensure that your veneers are made to the exact same thickness as the amount of enamel removed, so that the results look natural. The only exception is for cracked/chipped teeth, in which case the veneer will be made thicker in the damaged area.

Ways a dentist can make over your smile

A cosmetic dentist enjoys nothing more than seeing how a smile makeover can transform a patient’s self-esteem. Harley Street Dental Clinic is lucky to have a uniquely-skilled team of dentists and dental professionals, all of whom like working together to create the perfect smile for every patient.

cosmetic-dentistry-belfastIf you are unhappy with your current smile, you may be surprised to learn that you are not alone. More than 90% of the UK population feels uncomfortable smiling in photographs because they dislike some aspect of their current smile. Complaints range from stained or discoloured teeth to badly misaligned smiles and even missing teeth. Whatever your issue with your smile, why not come into Harley Street Dental Clinic to find out more about how your dentist can help?

Cosmetic dentistry was once only available to Hollywood superstars, but thanks to advances in techniques and materials coupled with a growing demand among the general public, treatment from a cosmetic dentist is more popular and more readily available than ever before.

Cosmetic dental treatments at our Harley Street clinic

When you come in for a cosmetic dentistry consultation at our Harley Street dental practice, your dentist will spend the time getting to know a bit about you and what you like and/or dislike about your current smile, as well as what the ideal results of treatment would be.

Your dentist will then undertake a complete clinical examination, taking into account far more than just your teeth and gums. To create the perfect smile, factors such as facial structure, hair colour, and lifestyle will be taken into account. At the end of your consultation your dentist will discuss the pros and cons of all available treatments with you, enabling you to make an informed choice. Only once you are completely happy and have answers to all your questions will your practitioner draw up a treatment plan.

Popular treatments at Harley Street Dental Clinic include:

Teeth whitening – With a dentist, this is a safe and predictable way to remove tooth stains.

Porcelain veneers – A fast, minimally-invasive way to make over a smile.

Discreet orthodontics – Subtle methods of teeth straightening.

How a cosmetic dentist can create the smile of your dreams

A good cosmetic dentist will take many things into account when designing your perfect smile. Harley Street Dental Clinic is lucky to benefit from the services of a range of highly-qualified specialists and dental professionals, who will work seamlessly together to create the smile you’ve always dreamt of, no matter what your treatment needs.

cosmetic-dentist-harley-streetThere is no such thing as a “one size fits all” approach to cosmetic dentistry, and you should be exceptionally wary of anyone who tries to tell you otherwise. When you come to Harley Street Dental Clinic for a consultation with a cosmetic dentist, they will of course look at your teeth and gums – taking into account factors including alignment, shape, size, and colour of your teeth, as well as how much gum tissue is on show when you smile. However, they will also take facial proportions, hair colour, lifestyle factors and personal aspirations from treatment into account.

After a detailed consultation, your Harley Street cosmetic dentist will involve you in all stages of treatment planning, answering any questions or concerns you may have and describing the pros and cons of any treatments they may recommend, so that you know what you can expect and can be sure you are making a well-informed choice. Only when you are entirely happy will your dentist draw up a treatment plan.

Depending on your individual needs, you may receive all of your treatment from your original cosmetic dentist, or you may be referred to one of their colleagues for specialist treatments. Whatever your requirements and whomever carries out any particular stage of treatment, your original dentist will oversee all of your care here at Harley Street Dental Clinic.

Many patients benefit from combining two or more options from our extensive cosmetic dentistry menu. Among the popular options from a Harley Street cosmetic dentist are:

Teeth straightening

Using braces or aligners to subtly improve tooth positioning.

Porcelain veneers

Thin porcelain shells bonded to the front of the teeth to improve their appearance.

Teeth whitening

Delivered by a cosmetic dentist, this is a safe and quick solution to common tooth stains.

How a dentist can replace missing teeth to restore your smile

A dentist will always tell you that missing teeth should be replaced promptly. Harley Street Dental Clinic offers a number of solutions to tooth loss, and the best one will be discussed by your dentist after a thorough examination and consultation.

replace-missing-teethWhy it is important to replace missing teeth

No matter why you have lost your tooth or teeth, you should consult a dentist as a matter of urgency. We offer emergency dental appointments at our Harley Street clinic, and will always endeavour to see you on the same day whenever possible.

Should your tooth be knocked out as a result of accident and injury, if you still have the tooth you should bring it with you to your appointment. In many cases your dentist will be able to re-implant it in the socket.

If you do still have the tooth and it is undamaged, be careful to only touch the crown (the part that is visible in the mouth) and avoid touching the root. Clean it under cold running water and put it in a clean container covered in your own saliva or in milk until you can see the emergency dentist, and call Harley Street Dental Clinic straight away.

Should your tooth be lost completely, or too damaged for your dentist to re-implant, there are a number of tooth replacement options available at our Harley Street dental practice. The pros and cons of these options will be discussed by your dentist.

Tooth replacement at Harley Street

We are lucky at Harley Street Dental Clinic to have a unique collection of dental professionals who will work together to create the perfect tooth replacement solution to suit your needs. We offer:

Bridges

Traditional dental bridges are used to replace one or two adjacent missing teeth and use surrounding teeth for support. Crowns or wings will be fitted to the supporting teeth with one or two false teeth in between. By combining a bridge with dental implants, they can be used to replace several teeth.

Dentures

A good solution for several or all missing teeth. Your clinician may recommend securing dentures with dental implants.

Ways that a cosmetic dentist can brighten your smile

A cosmetic dentist has numerous ways to brighten up your smile. Harley Street Dental Clinic has a wide range of cosmetic treatments on offer, delivered by a unique and highly skilled team of dental professionals. If you wish that your smile was brighter or whiter, why not join us for a cosmetic dentistry consultation?

cosmetic-dentistEveryone wants a bright, white, aesthetically appealing smile. However, a number of lifestyle factors get in the way, leading to stained or discoloured teeth that can make you embarrassed to show your smile off at all. Whatever the cause of the discolouration or staining of your teeth, a cosmetic dentist can help.

Treatment from a Harley Street cosmetic dentist

When you come into our Harley Street clinic for a consultation, the first thing your cosmetic dentist will to is to ascertain the nature of your tooth discolouration. The commonest reason for staining of the teeth is inadequate or ineffectual dental hygiene. If your home brushing routine doesn’t make the grade, plaque will build up on the teeth, leading to unpleasant brown staining.

A dental hygienist can professionally clean your teeth to get rid of all the plaque, and can help you to modify your home routine to help the problem recurring. Good oral hygiene is important not just for aesthetic reasons, but also for the sake of your oral health. Plaque can lead to problems including dental decay, gum disease, and bad breath.

If your teeth are poorly aligned, they can be difficult to keep clean despite your best efforts. Harley Street Dental Clinic offers a number of discreet orthodontic treatments that can improve the alignment of your teeth, and so improve your oral hygiene.

For other common causes of tooth staining, such as smoking or drinking a lot of coffee, teeth whitening is an excellent option. Delivered by a cosmetic dentist this is a safe and rapid way to combat stains.

Permanent discolouration can be improved with porcelain veneers, which are bonded to the front of the teeth to improve their aesthetic appearance. Your cosmetic dentist can also replace metal fillings with tooth-coloured alternatives.

A good dentist can help your child maintain their oral health for life

Visiting the dentist from an early age has been proven to help prevent dental phobia later in life. At Harley Street Dental Clinic we recommend bringing your child in from the age of 12 months onwards, when some of their first teeth should have started to appear. Of course, all babies are different, and some are even born with teeth. If you notice anything of concern with your baby’s teeth at any stage, bring them in for a consultation.

oral-healthHarley Street Dental Clinic has a dedicated children’s dental team, led by paediatric specialist Professor Raman Bedi, who is chairman of the Global Child Dental Fund and co-chair of a global expert committee on caries prevention and management.

The benefits of early visits to the dentist

By visiting the dentist from the age of 12 months onwards, you not only teach your child that the dental practice is nothing to be afraid of, but also you help them to establish good oral health for life.

Children in the UK still have unacceptably high levels of tooth decay, and whilst this is improving there is still a lot of work to be done. A good children’s dentist can spot any potential problems early, and can provide your child with age-appropriate information and encouragement to help them get the most out of brushing their teeth.

At our Harley Street clinic, Professor Bedi will always take the time to get to know young patients, and will talk to them as well as their parents to explain any treatments or changes to the home tooth cleaning routine that are required.

Links have been proven between bad dental health and other general health conditions, including diabetes and gum disease. Therefore, visiting the dentist is vitally important for patients of all ages.

At our Harley Street clinic we believe that prevention is better than cure, and offer a number of preventative measures to child patients, including fluoride varnish and fissure sealants, designed to strengthen the teeth and help prevent decay.

Should we find your child does need a filling, their dentist will use a laser to removed decayed areas of a tooth, which is pain-free and far less stressful than a traditional drill.