Endodontics

“Root canal treatment” is a phrase that may make even the bravest of patients less than enthusiastic about visiting the dentist. However, root canal treatment, or endodontics, is essential if your tooth becomes infected, and may prevent you from losing it.

endodonticsIf you find you need endodontic treatment, you will come under the care of our specialist endodontist, Dr Nectaria Polycarpou. As well as being a skilled practitioner with many years of experience and many happy patients, Nectaria has an empathic, caring nature, enabling her to manage even the most complex cases in a relaxed, comfortable environment. As with all of our dental team at Harley Street Dental Clinic, Nectaria is committed to pain-free dentistry.

Root canal treatment becomes necessary when the pulp or nerve at the centre of your tooth becomes infected. This may be caused by untreated tooth decay or by an accident or injury that has damaged your tooth. Often, the first symptom is severe pain or a swelling known as a dental abscess.

If your dentist discovers you need root canal treatment, you will be referred to Nectaria. She will use a binocular microscope and special tools to remove the source and all traces of infection, to thoroughly clean and shape the space inside the root, and to fill it to prevent infection recurring.

Depending on your individual case, you may need one or two appointments to complete treatment. Endodontic treatment is usually carried out under local anaesthesia, although sedation can be arranged for nervous patients. Most patients report it feels no worse than having a filling.

Because root canal treatment is a skilled and delicate procedure, appointments usually take between one and two hours, depending on which tooth is affected. Back teeth usually have more roots and root canals than front teeth.

Endodontic treatment is nothing to be afraid of and should not cause any pain. We will also provide you with analgesia to take care of any post-treatment discomfort.

What is root canal treatment, and why does your dentist recommend it?

If your dentist said: “You need root canal treatment?” would your heart sink a little bit? At Harley Street Dental Clinic we understand that many patients are nervous about root canal treatment. However, we are keen to reassure our patients that this specialised procedure is not just pain-free, but is also essential to prevent the need for your tooth to be extracted – an outcome nobody wants. It really is nothing to be scared of.

root canal treatmentRoot canal treatment, also known as endodontics, is necessary when the pulp or nerve at the centre of a tooth becomes infected. This is fairly common and can result from untreated tooth decay, accident or injury. You may or may not realise that your tooth has been damaged; the first sign that something is wrong is usually toothache.

Endodontic treatment involves your dentist using a binocular microscope and special files to cleanse the tooth of infection. After cleaning the space inside the root this is then filled to stop further infection occurring. In most cases, the tooth is then fitted with a crown to give it extra strength following the procedure. All of this is done under local anaesthetic, so you should experience no pain or discomfort.

At our Harley Street dental clinic our endodontic work is carried out by specialist Dr Nectaria Polycarpou, who is highly skilled and experienced and is also known for her kind, compassionate nature, which helps patients to relax before and during treatment.

Most patients who have had the procedure at our Harley Street centre report it feels no different to having a standard filling, although your appointment is likely to be longer because this is delicate, skilled work. You will require two or more appointments with the dentist to complete this procedure to ensure all infection has cleared.

Some teeth have more root canals than others (the front teeth often have one, the back teeth two or more) so the length of your appointment will depend on which tooth is involved.

How a cosmetic dentist can transform your smile more quickly than you think

A skilled cosmetic dentist has many techniques at their disposal to provide every patient with the perfect smile. Harley Street Dental Practice offers an extensive range of cosmetic dental treatments, from teeth whitening to full smile makeovers and full-mouth restorations using dental implants.

cosmetic dentistHere, we examine some of the quickest ways a cosmetic dentist can transfer your smile. . .

Cosmetic dentistry is a broad field, with many different procedures available. At our Harley Street dental clinic we believe that every patient’s treatment plan should be just as individual and unique as they are. A good cosmetic dentist will never recommend a “quick-fix” solution; they care about treatment that looks and acts naturally and lasts for a long time.

However, there are some fast ways to boost your smile with the help of a cosmetic dentist here at our Harley Street practice.

Veneers

Veneers are micro-thin shells of porcelain that are placed over the front surfaces of the teeth to mask a range of imperfections – much like false fingernails. They look natural and beautiful, and a good cosmetic dentist will ensure your veneers are matched to the natural colour of your teeth.

Crooked teeth, teeth with permanent discolouration or staining, gappy teeth and teeth with small chips or cracks are all perfect candidates for treatment with veneers. You could have a brand new smile in as little as two appointments.

Teeth whitening

When carried out by a cosmetic dentist, teeth whitening is a safe, predictable and reliable way to boost the appearance of your smile. It involves the use of special dental bleaching gel, which safely removes everyday stains (such as those caused by coffee and tea) from your teeth, leaving them several shades brighter.

Teeth whitening treatment can be carried out at home or here at our Harley Street clinic.

Why introducing your child to the dentist early can help combat dental phobia

When should I start taking my child to the dentist? That’s a common question asked by many parents. At Harley Street Dental Clinic we believe that the answer is “the earlier the better.” We recommend bringing your child in as soon as their first teeth start to appear – on average from the age of 12 months. This has the dual benefits of helping your child establish good oral health habits from an early age, and also lessening their chances of developing dental phobia.

combat dental phobiaA bad experience during childhood is one of the most common reasons nervous and phobic patients cite for being afraid of the dentist. While it’s true that, just as in any profession, there were and may still be some dental professionals who are not naturals at working with children, at our Harley Street clinic we have a dedicated children’s dental team, led by Professor Raman Bedi, who is the chairman of the Global Child Dental Fund and co-chair of a global expert committee on caries management and prevention.

Professor Bedi and his team take the time to build a rapport and a relationship of trust with young patients, talking to them as well as to their parents and explaining everything in an age-appropriate manner. The idea is to help your child develop good oral health habits from a young age, which includes stringent home care as well as regular visits to the dentist.

Children’s dental health in the UK still has a lot of room for improvement. Young children still have high instances of tooth decay, which has been linked to general problems including heart disease and diabetes in later life.

By bringing your young child into our Harley Street dental practice, they will quickly learn to see the dentist as a friendly face, and are more likely to be interested in keeping their mouth healthy. Preventative measures such as fissure sealant and fluoride varnish can help prevent decay, and any problems that do arise can be tackled early.

Unhappy with your smile? Ask a cosmetic dentist about smile makeovers

A smile makeover is a procedure used by a cosmetic dentist to address and correct the aesthetic issues that make people unhappy with their smiles. At Harley Street Dental Clinic, we provide a six-step smile makeover plan that can be used to help all cosmetic dental patients, from those with a small, simple concern to those requiring complex full-mouth restorations using dental implants.

cosmetic dentist about smile makeoversThe Harley Street Dental Clinic is one of the UK’s leading smile makeover clinics, with a highly experienced, dedicated team providing a wide range of cosmetic dental treatments. Whatever your issues with your smile, we are confident that we have the perfect cosmetic dentist to help you.

What will my cosmetic dentist do?

Here are the steps your cosmetic dentist will follow when you come for a smile makeover consultation in Harley Street:

1 First assessment. You will be appointed a cosmetic dentist who will first listen to your concerns about your smile before examining your teeth, gums and surrounding structures, as well as checking your general oral health and taking such factors as hair colour into account.

2 Treatment recommendation. Your dentist will discuss their findings and the various cosmetic dental treatments that can help you achieve the smile of your dreams. This may be one treatment, or a combination of two or more.

3 Computer imaging technology. Using scans and 3D computer-aided smile design, your cosmetic dentist will show you what results you can expect from various relevant treatments.

4 Treatment plan. Once you have made an educated decision about treatment, your cosmetic dentist will draw up a treatment plan.

5 Appointment scheduling. Your cosmetic dentist will let you know how many appointments you will need, and you can start to book them in.

6 Models and templates. Any treatment requiring models or impressions, such as veneers, will be taken and 3D temporary templates will be created.

When to call an emergency dentist

When a dental emergency occurs, it’s vital that you see a dentist as soon as possible. Here at Harley Street Dental Clinic, we understand that dental emergencies can occur at any time, which is why we have a dedicated emergency line, and will try to see you on the same day whenever possible.

dental emergencyWhat constitutes a dental emergency?

There are numerous reasons that you may need to see a dentist urgently. These include:

  • Chipped or cracked teeth
  • Lost teeth through accident or injury
  • Broken teeth
  • Sudden, unbearable toothache
  • Dental abscess
  • Damage to orthodontic devices, bridges and other restorations
  • Excessive or unstoppable bleeding after oral surgery

Here is what your dentist may do if you come for an emergency appointment at our Harley Street clinic:

Chipped, cracked or broken teeth

You should see a dentist even for minor chips or cracks, to prevent further problems arising. Your dentist will smooth down any rough edges of a damaged tooth and restore it using white fillings, composite bonding or crowns, depending on the amount and area of damage.

Lost teeth

If your teeth are knocked out in an accident or through injury, it may be possible for your dentist to re-implant them in the socket. Only pick your tooth up by the crown, never by the root. If you can’t re-implant it yourself, put it in a clean container covered in your own saliva or milk, and come to our Harley Street clinic as soon as possible.

Tooth ache and dental abscesses

Unbearable tooth ache or dental abscesses (painful swellings) require quick action from a dentist. We will drain any abscesses under local anaesthetic and will get you out of pain – you may require further appointments to fully correct a problem.

Broken orthodontic devices and restorations

If a brace, bridge or other restoration breaks, book an appointment at Harley Street Dental Clinic as soon as you can. We will restore or replace devices as necessary.

Why you should always consult a cosmetic dentist for teeth whitening treatment

Teeth whitening treatment is probably the most common procedure a cosmetic dentist will be asked about. At Harley Street Dental Clinic, our team have provided teeth whitening treatment for scores of happy patients.

teeth whitening treatmentHere, we look at why you must consult a cosmetic dentist for teeth whitening. . .

By law, teeth whitening must only be carried out by a dentist or a hygienist on a dentist’s prescription. However, there are still some beauty salons offering the procedure, as well as numerous products available online and on the high street that claim to whiten teeth.

Many of these products will have a cheaper price tag than teeth whitening from a cosmetic dentist. That does not mean, however, that they do not come with hidden costs.

The teeth whitening products used at Harley Street Dental Clinic have been extensively tested and are completely safe. Products in beauty salons, online and on the high street are unlikely to have been subjected to such rigorous testing.

In the best-case scenario, these products will simply not work. You will feel frustrated that you have wasted your money, but in fact you have had a lucky escape, as some products can actually damage your teeth, gums or mouth. This can result in discomfort, pain and in some cases the need for extensive restorative dental treatment.

Teeth whitening treatment, like all cosmetic dental procedures, should only be carried out on healthy teeth. When you come to our Harley Street clinic for a consultation with a cosmetic dentist, they will be able to identify any oral health problems such as tooth decay or gum disease, which could result in increased sensitivity during whitening. They will treat any health problems first, before carrying out teeth whitening here in the practice or providing you with whitening gel and trays to use at home, depending on your preference.

Missing teeth: what your dentist can do

There are several options available to a dentist when patients present with missing teeth. At Harley Street Dental Clinic we always recommend replacing lost teeth, and have a variety of treatments to suit all needs and budgets.

missing teethTeeth may be lost through tooth decay, gum disease, accident or injury. If your tooth is knocked out by accident or injury, it is sometimes possible for your dentist to re-implant it in the socket. Should you suffer a mishap that causes you to lose a tooth, you should book an emergency dental appointment at our Harley Street clinic, bringing your tooth with you if you still have it.

A tooth that has been knocked out should be picked up by the crown (the visible part of the tooth in your mouth). Avoid touching the root. Carefully clean the tooth in cold water if necessary and put it in a clean container covered in milk or your own saliva to bring it to your dentist.

If we can’t re-implant your tooth, your dentist will go through all appropriate tooth replacement options.

Bridges

Bridges are a common way to replace one or two adjacent missing teeth. They comprise a solid precious metal base with false teeth attached. For teeth in your smile line, we add porcelain to the base to make it look more natural. Bridges may be supported by crowns or wings on adjacent teeth, or may be attached to dental implants.

Dentures

Dentures can also be attached to dental implants, or can be made to fit snuggly over the gums. Partial dentures replace a few missing teeth while full dentures replace all teeth in one jaw. At our Harley Street clinic, our prosthodontist will create highly natural-looking dentures for you.

Dental implants

Dental implants replace the root portion of a missing tooth. Crowns, bridges or dentures are then attached on top. They are the only permanent way to replace missing teeth.

Make visits to the dentist part of your child’s routine – children’s dentistry

When should I start taking my child to the dentist? It’s a common question that many parents will ask themselves. At Harley Street Dental Clinic, we recommend seeing children from the age of 12 months onwards, by which time in most cases their milk teeth will have started to appear.

childrens dentistryTaking your child to visit the dentist from an early age can help them to establish good oral health habits for life. At our Harley Street clinic we have a specialist children’s dental team, headed up by Professor Raman Bedi. Professor Bedi is the chairman of the Global Child Dental Fund and co-chair of a global expert committee on caries management and prevention. He takes the time to build up a rapport and a relationship of trust with all of his young patients.

Even if all of your child’s teeth haven’t erupted by the age of 12 months, it is still a good idea to bring them into our Harley Street clinic for a check-up. They may benefit from observing parents or siblings sitting in the chair and opening their mouth to let the dentist look at their teeth, and copying what they see.

Dental visits from an early age will help your child to see their dentist as a friendly face whom they look forward to visiting every six months. Information about good oral health will also be provided in an age-appropriate manner, helping children to develop good habits that will stick with them for life.

Children in the UK still have unacceptably high levels of tooth decay. By bringing them into our Harley Street clinic to visit a dedicated children’s dentist, you can help your child to stay decay-free. If they do need further treatment such as fillings, we use a laser rather than a drill, which is far more comfortable and less distressing for young patients.

What a cosmetic dentist can do for you

A cosmetic dentist provides treatments that focus on the aesthetic appearance of your smile. At Harley Street Dental Practice our skilled cosmetic dental team have helped countless patients to transform their smiles, and with it boost their self-esteem, professional and personal interactions.

cosmetic dentistMany people are unhappy with the way their smile looks. If you find yourself hiding your smile behind your hand in public or even not smiling at all because you are embarrassed about the appearance of your teeth or gums, you may think that help is beyond your reach, or that you’ve left it too late to get treatment.

At Harley Street Dental Clinic, we believe that it is never too late to seek the help of a cosmetic dentist. There have been massive advances in the materials, techniques and technology in the field of cosmetic dentistry in recent years, which has enabled more and more patients to achieve the smile they’ve always wanted.

The team here at Harley Street is highly specialised and comprises a unique mix of skills. Whether you have a small concern or a big problem, we are confident that we have the perfect cosmetic dentist or team of dentists to help.

When you come into our Harley Street clinic for a consultation with a cosmetic dentist, they will listen carefully to the concerns you have about your smile, and will conduct a thorough examination of your teeth and gums before recommending appropriate treatments.

This could be something as simple as removing stains from your teeth with at-home or in-practice teeth whitening, or could be as extensive as a full-mouth rehabilitation using crowns, dentures, bridges or dental implants, depending on your individual needs.

No matter what treatment you need, you can relax and know that you are in safe and skilled hands. Your cosmetic dentist will pay great attention to detail, using the highest-quality materials and the best techniques to deliver the smile of your dreams.