Overcoming Dental Phobia; A Patients Journey read more
If the thought of going to the dentist causes your heart to race and your hands to sweat you are not alone. Although many will choose to make dental health one of their New Years resolutions, in reality many will give the dentist a miss due to dental anxiety.
I know we have in the past written about dental phobias but I thought it was worth revisiting the topic as it is such a common theme with many patients who come to visit for the first time . The following account of a patient’s personal journey with us here at the Mayhill Dental Centre is very heart felt and thought it worth publishing in the hope that it will help other people overcome their anxiety.
“My husband Peter attended the Mayhill & was treated by Jason. His previous dental experiences had not been satisfactory for a variety of reasons. Jason sorted all the dental problems & since then Peter has had no mouth difficulties at all. For this reason he tried to persuade me to see Jason, who at that point had no idea that I had suffered trauma as a teenager & was terrified of attending the dentist. It took numerous visits to even get inside the Mayhill, from putting my hand on the door handle to walking away. I eventually entered Jason’s surgery with Peter, but had great difficulty even speaking to anyone & ending up in floods of tears, even though I was having no treatment. Jason & his staff were patience personified. He spoke gently, took time, explained & had infinite patience & understanding with me. He did what I consider extensive treatment from crowns to dentures for missing teeth, took numerous measurements of my mouth, photographs, etc with the result being a perfect fit of everything. He did in fact give me back a smile that I don’t remember having since a teenager. Jason changed my life for the better, not only with the dental result but in taking away my fear without the need for medication, but just in his manner & gentleness. How can you ever thank a person for making such a difference to your life. However I do so in saying Thank You Jason so very much.”
B Johns 17/10/2017
So do remember if you have a fear of the dentist you are not alone! Please feel free to call the Mayhill on 01600 712020 for further advice or help.
I wanted to take the opportunity to write and thank you for your heroic efforts yesterday. 90 minutes working on a patient is taxing for all concerned (and I was just lying there). I really appreciated the kindness and professionalism of your staff – it makes such a difference when the nursing staff are not the usual faceless parade of anonymous agency personnel, and your team on the front desk are kind and courteous. The level of equipment in The Mayhill is second-to-none and I appreciated the skill you used in my treatment. I was further impressed that I had no pain or swelling even after such a long treatment and have returned to my normal work pattern today. Thank you again for your kind and professional treatment yesterday, it’s much appreciated.
I came to the Mayhill practice after having had problems with my front teeth over the previous few months. I needed guidance to help me decide on how best to proceed. After many years of crowns and bridges, David steered me through the other options available, including dentures and implant types. My remaining front teeth were no longer able to satisfactorily support a new bridge. I had damaged roots from years of tightly fitting bridges and root canal work. To complicate matters there was an existing front tooth that required to be removed to reduce the risk of future problems. After considering David’s expertly explained options I was able to make the choice to proceed with a two implant option for my three front teeth. What a great decision it was. I now have the most comfortable and visually pleasing front teeth that I can remember (I’m now 62 years old) The whole team at the Mayhill have been extremely caring and professional and the lab work was of the highest order and accuracy. My initial implant fitting went perfectly first time and I hardly remember any discomfort during the implant work. It was over before I realised it was completed! I have never been more comfortable with the fit and appearance of my teeth. The colour match is flawless. I cant thank David and the team enough for the work they have done. I can certainly recommend the Mayhill for your dental implant work in future.
Today’s gold standard for tooth replacement is dental implants. A dental implant is a small, titanium alloy screw which is used to surgically replace damaged or missing natural teeth. The implant is placed into the jawbone so that the screw can firmly connect the artificial teeth or any other prosthesis to the jaw. Implants can also be used to support loose, removable dentures.
Prior to dental implants, a partial denture or fixed bridge was the standard approach for tooth replacement. With a fixed bridge, the two teeth on either side of the gap (abutment teeth) are crowned and these support a “pontic” (a false tooth) between them. The biggest disadvantage of this type of treatment is that the abutment teeth are drilled down to accommodate the crowns which can often compromise healthy teeth.
The biggest advantage of dental implants is that they do not affect the integrity of the adjacent teeth. However there must be a sufficient amount of healthy jaw bone to anchor the implant and the adjacent teeth and gums must be healthy. They also have a longer lifespan in comparison to bridgework. To assess the quality and volume of bone we can now use 3D scanners which makes treatment simpler and safer.
Why is replacing missing or lost teeth important in the first place?
Loosing teeth can put an emotional stress on ourselves. We all care about our appearance and how we look and this can affect our confidence both at work and on a personal basis.
Once a tooth is lost, the balance of the entire dental structure is disturbed. The gap can allow the remaining teeth to tilt and shift. This can affect regular chewing and can lead to further problems down the line. If multiple teeth are lost then bone can be lost which can make the face height change.
Chewing can be uncomfortable if missing teeth are replaced with ill fitting dentures. The gum often becomes thin and delicate and the forces developed by the denture can cause ulceration and swelling. Losing the ability to chew food properly can stop you from enjoying a big part of your life.
If you would like further advice please feel free to call The Mayhill Dental & Specialist Centre on 01600 712020 or email email@example.com
My husband Peter attended the Mayhill & was treated by Jason. His previous dental experiences had not been satisfactory for a variety of reasons. Jason sorted all the dental problems & since then Peter has had no mouth difficulties at all. For this reason he tried to persuade me to see Jason, who at that point had no idea that I had suffered trauma as a teenager & was terrified of attending the dentist. It took numerous visits to even get inside the Mayhill, from putting my hand on the door handle to walking away. I eventually entered Jason’s surgery with Peter, but had great difficulty even speaking to anyone & ending up in floods of tears, even though I was having no treatment. Jason & his staff were patience personified. He spoke gently, took time, explained & had infinite patience & understanding with me. He did what I consider extensive treatment from crowns to dentures for missing teeth, took numerous measurements of my mouth, photographs, etc with the result being a perfect fit of everything. He did in fact give me back a smile that I don’t remember having since a teenager. Jason changed my life for the better, not only with the dental result but in taking away my fear without the need for medication, but just in his manner & gentleness. How can you ever thank a person for making such a difference to your life. However I do so in saying Thank You Jason so very much.
– Barbara Johns [ October 2017 ]
When Should Your Child Be Seen for An Orthodontic Checkup? read more
This is a frequently asked question by parents of young children. This depends on the dental age of the patient rather than chronological age. Braces are usually associated with teenagers but this isn’t always the case. Treatment can start as early as seven years of age. A good time to have your child assessed by an orthodontist is after the front permanent teeth have erupted into the mouth or if there is extreme crowding of the teeth. Regular visits to the dentist are important as they will be looking out for any problems that might benefit early orthodontic treatment. Any concerns should be referred to an orthodontist.
Early warning signs:
Baby teeth that are lost too early or too late. Most are lost between the age of 5-14. Thumb sucking; especially if its excessive or carries on beyond the age of 4. Teeth that don’t bite together properly or stick out. Speech impediments such as a lisp or slurring Crowded adult front teeth
Benefits of Early Treatment:
It is important that your dentist keeps a close eye on your child’s development as some problems are treated more efficiently at a young age. As we age our jaw bone stops growing so orthodontic treatment becomes slightly more difficult. By starting early we can guide the jaw bone growth and change their position and width. The alternative solution for adults is tooth removal or surgery. Early intervention can also help make sure there is enough space as the adult teeth start to come through in the correct position. Front teeth which protrude are very vulnerable to trauma. This is especially the case in young adults who are playing contact sports. Gum shields will reduce but not eliminate the risks. Early treatment to reduce the overjet can reduce the odds of catastrophic trauma to these teeth.
What Does Early Orthodontic Treatment Involve
Wearing a fixed or removable brace although removable is more common. If the child has a small jaw or teeth that stick out your orthodontist might recommend a twin block brace. This is removable and repositions the jaws helping them into the correct position. This is usually followed by a fixed brace.
Referring Children for an Orthodontic Assessment
Your dentist can refer your child directly for a private assessment and treatment at any time for a specialist opinion. If you child has an NHS assessment and qualifies for treatment they may need to join a waiting list before the braces are fitted. This is due to limited funding available on the NHS. Typical waiting lists can be up to 2 years.
If you would like further advice or to arrange an orthodontic assessment please feel free to call 01600 712020 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
As we age, some people believe that losing their teeth is inevitable. This is a misconception! With proper care your teeth can last a lifetime. There have been huge strides made in technological developments. These modern techniques can extend the life of your teeth preserving function and of course a healthy smile.
Taking Care of Our Gums
As we get older our resistance to infection can reduce. The bacteria that cause gum disease can take advantage of this. Gum disease, not tooth decay is the number one cause of missing teeth in adults. If left untreated it can cause advanced gum disease called periodontitis. Ultimately this can cause bone loss and subsequent tooth loss. Daily brushing, flossing together with regular professional care will help keep your teeth and gums healthy. Some patients need more regular hygiene appointments and perhaps more involved treatment in order to restore and maintain gum health. A periodontist is a specially trained dentist who can help to save teeth which might otherwise seem to be hopeless.
Cutting Down on Wear and Tear
Although teeth are really strong, they can be worn down over time. All the years of chewing, grinding and biting can wear away the enamel-the hard outer layer of the teeth. Avoid chewing ice and other hard foods as they can cause chips in the enamel. There are cosmetic methods available that can improve the appearance of worn teeth such as composite facings and porcelain veneers.
Don’t Let Your Mouth Dry Out
Saliva helps keep teeth clean and protects them from decay. As we get older our mouths get drier and the odds of tooth decay go up. Medication can be to blame. Drink lots of water and hold it in your mouth for a few seconds before you swallow. Chewing sugarless gum can also encourage saliva. Avoid sugary snacks.
Replacing Missing Teeth
Our smile is integral to our health and happiness. Losing teeth diminishes this and most importantly function. The way we talk and eat affect the way we feel about ourselves. Loose dentures can now be a thing of the past. Technological advancements such as dental implants can now give you fixed teeth. This can subtract years off your age and add to your confidence and health. The ability to eat all foods is life enriching!
Age should be no barrier to having straight teeth. Crooked teeth can be difficult to clean and this can often lead to tooth decay. Modern, discreet and often invisible braces can move teeth quickly to help you achieve a great smile.
It’s never too late to achieve a beautiful smile. Age gives us the time and ability to pursue our own interests and passions. Take this opportunity to invest in your smile and enjoy the positive effect that it will have on your life!
Please feel free to call the Mayhill Dental & Specialist Centre for further advice on 01600 712020 or email email@example.com
I would like to record my thanks and complete satisfaction with my implant treatment. As a very nervous patient with a thousand questions, I was treated superbly. From the welcome of staff at reception to the work of David and Jim I was made to feel reassured. The process has been very thorough and explained throughout.
Only regret- should have come to the Mayhill years ago.
Dental Anxiety is one of the most common phobias in the world with nearly a third of all adults disliking the dentist and 1 in 10 of us having a phobia so strong that we actually avoid visiting the dentist. A phobia is an intense, unreasonable fear. People with dental phobias often put off routine care for years or even decades. To avoid it they will put up with gum disease, pain and even broken teeth.
Overcoming Mild Dental Anxiety
This is discomfort and nervousness as opposed to fear or panic.
Talking to your dentist
This is the first step to overcoming dental fear. With a combination of kindness and gentleness, dentists can do a lot to make dental treatment stress free.
Practicing Breathing techniques
Controlled breathing relaxes the body and shifts the mind to other things. This simply involves inhaling and exhaling through the nose for a slow count of three.
Needle phobias can be overcome through painless treatment. Advances in technology has also improved dentistry. Treatment can now be pain free. The dental wand ( a computerised injection system that looks like a pen and delivers anaesthetic very slowly so it is painless) is great for anyone with needle phobia. A numbing gel can also be used to numb the gums before an injection so you don’t feel the needle.
Overcoming Severe Dental Anxiety
This is a psychological phobia that is less due to nerves and more due to fears. We can potentially overcome severe dental anxiety in a few ways:
Counselling: This is free on the NHS for severe phobias and helps hundreds of people. There is also a wide number of support networks such as DentalFearCentral http://www.dentalfearcentral.org.
Sedation: This may prove one of the best solutions for severe sufferers of dental anxiety, giving you a better chance of visiting the dentist again! There are different types of sedation available. The simplest is oral sedation which is a tablet you swallow an hour before treatment. You will still be awake and aware of what is happening around you but you will also be drowsy and more relaxed. There is also the option of intravenous sedation. This is an injection which is administered into the back of the hand. You will still be awake, however you will be in a deeply relaxed state and may not remember what happened afterwards.
Here at the Mayhill Dental Centre we provide gentle and caring dentistry with the options of the dental wand and sedation. If you would like further advice or just a chat please feel free to call us on 01600 712020 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Is Tooth Sensitivity Cramping your Style? read more
Is the taste of ice cream or a sip of a hot drink making you wince with pain? Does brushing or flossing sometimes cause you pain? If so, you may have sensitive teeth. Any sensitivity needs to be checked with a dentist as there could be other possible causes such as tooth decay, fractured teeth, worn fillings, grinding or clenching and gum disease. If your dentist has ruled out these problems then it is likely to be tooth sensitivity.
Tooth sensitivity occurs when the enamel that protects the teeth gets thinner or when gum recession occurs, exposing the underlying surface called the dentine. This reduces the protection the enamel and gums provide to the tooth and roots. The dentin contains microscopic tubules which are exposed when the enamel wears thin. These tubules allow heat, cold and acidity to stimulate the nerves inside the tooth. This causes hypersensitivity. Dentin may also be exposed when gums recede.
Preventing Tooth Sensitivity
Incorrect or over brushing can cause gum recession. Teeth should be brushed gently using a soft bristled toothbrush twice a day. A soft brush can prevent tooth abrasion and prevent enamel wear. Use short strikes following an up and down movement.
Avoiding acidic foods and drink can help prevent sensitivity and enamel wear.
Use a fluoride toothpaste to strengthen tooth enamel.
Flossing once a day can help get rid of plaque on the gum line and keeps gum healthy thus avoiding gum disease.
Desensitising toothpastes; These contain compounds that help block transmission of sensation from the tooth surface to the nerve. Put some paste on your finger and directly apply on the sore spot and gently massage.
Desensitising products; The dental team can treat the affected teeth with fluoride gels and varnishes. These can be painted on to the teeth at regular appointments to build up protection. If this does not alleviate symptoms the dentist may seal or fill around the neck of the tooth to cover exposed dentine.
Surgical gum grafts; This will replace the lost gum tissue from the root.
Root Canal Therapy; If the sensitivity is severe and persistent and does not respond to other methods.
Get treated for Bruxism: if you grind or clench your teeth use a mouth guard at night. Grinding your teeth can cause the enamel of the teeth to wear away, making the teeth sensitive.
If you would like further advice please feel free to call the Mayhill Dental Centre on 01600 712020 or email on email@example.com