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Spring clean your smile

11th March 2017

With the bulbs starting to peak through and the weather slightly warmer, you can really start to feel that spring is just around the corner. Spring is the perfect time to clear out the old and bring in the new.

The same principle can be applied to your oral health. Over the busy new year period it is easy for your oral hygiene routine to slip slightly, so here at The Essex Smile Centre we have come up with a 5 -point plan to put the spring back in your smile.

1. Good Oral hygiene

It is important to ensure that you brush your teeth twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and use interdental cleaning aids to clean in between your teeth daily.

2. Indulge in a varied diet

Eating too much of the wrong kind of foods is bad for your oral health as well as your body. Spring is a great chance to indulge in a diet rich in vitamins, minerals, fresh fruit and vegetables, a diet which can help to prevent gum disease.

3. Kick the habit

Smoking has a detrimental effect on your mouth, teeth and gums, causing teeth to become stained and dull. With No Smoking Day on Wednesday 8th March, why not take the leap and use this spring as the year you quit for good.

4. Visit the hygienist for a scale and polish

The hygienist is specifically trained to offer help and advice on preventative dental treatment. The hygienist will also scale and polish your teeth, removing stains to brighten and whiten your smile.

5. Budget for your dental treatment

Your dental care should not be viewed as a luxury. Alongside toothpaste, toothbrushes, mouthwash and interdental cleaning aids, it is important not to forget regular dental appointments. Want to ensure that you’ve budgeted for your dental care? Why not consider one of our Denplan plans, with fixed affordable monthly payments you can ensure this spring you make your oral health a priority.

Call The Essex Smile Centre today on 01268 742333 and book your appointment with the hygienist to spring clean your smile or speak to one of our team about Denplan

New Year, New you

19th January 2017

Your future is created by what you do today not tomorrow “– Robert Kiyosaki

Have you been putting off getting your perfect smile? Looking for a brighter, straighter or fuller smile? Here at The Essex Smile Centre we are able to offer range of treatments not only to improve the appearance of your smile but also to help give you a more youthful appearance.

Teeth Whitening

If you are looking for a whiter, brighter smile teeth whitening could be the perfect solution. Teeth whitening will help to remove staining and discolouration caused by ageing, smoking, diet and medications, making it a safe and effective way to enhance the appearance of your teeth.

Benefits of Teeth Whitening

  • Teeth whitening improves your appearance dramatically for a relatively small outlay.
  • Teeth whitening boosts self-confidence and the personal feel good factor
  • Teeth whitening does not have any harmful side effects on your teeth and can help to improve the health of your gums
  • A whiter smile tends to minimise the appearance of facial wrinkles, giving a more youthful appearance.

Teeth Straightening

Teeth straightening can help to create a beautiful smile. At The Essex Smile Centre we are able to offer a range of teeth straightening treatments, including Invisalign, Six Month Smiles and the Inman Aligner. However, we focus in Invisalign because it offers the most discreet way to achieve the perfect smile. We have tried and tested all the other ways of teeth straightening and Invisalign always comes up tops. We offer a fantastic package which covers teeth whitening, retainers (fixed and removable) and contouring.

Benefits

  • Teeth Straightening can help to improve confidence and self-esteem, allowing you to achieve things you never thought were possible.
  • Teeth straightening allows gums to be kept clean and healthy by easier removal of any plaque or calculus present. In the long term this can help reduce the risk of tooth loss due to gum disease.
  • Teeth straightening reduces wear caused to your mouth and jaw, by clenching and grinding, because you wear night time retainers to keep teeth straight and protected.
  • Teeth straightening can also improve your overall health. Your teeth and gums can provide a clear picture of your overall health. If you look after your teeth and gums you are also likely to look after the rest of your body.

Implants

Implants replace the root of a missing tooth and can be used to support crowns, bridges or dentures, depending on the number of teeth to be restored. Dental implants provide a permanent solution to patients who wish to effectively recapture the aesthetic and functional nature of their smile.

Benefits

Dental Implants are the next best thing to healthy, natural teeth. A dental implant restores a lost tooth or teeth so that it looks, feels, fits and functions like a natural tooth

  • Dental implants can be a long-term solution lasting for over 15 years with a very low failure rate, if looked after.
  • Dental implants help to retain the natural shape of your smile.
  • Dental implants help preserve your bone levels, helping prevent further tooth loss

Facial Aesthetics

Over time when we laugh, smile or frown our skin loses its elasticity and the wrinkles in our face deepen and lines become more permanent. Anti-wrinkle injections can help to relax muscles which will improve and reduce the appearance of lines, giving you a younger, smoother appearance to your skin

Benefits

Why wait? Call The Essex Smile Centre today on 01268 742333 and book your free smile evaluation and start you journey to a new you.

Handling Dental Emergencies over the festive period

14th December 2016

No matter how good you are at attending for your dental appointments, dental problems are likely to affect most people at some point. There are several simple things you can do to help prior to seeing the dentist.

  • Toothache or Swelling

First thoroughly rinse your mouth with warm water and use interdental cleaning aids to removing any food which may have become caught exacerbating the problem. Place a cold compress outside your mouth to help reduce any swelling. Most toothaches or swelling are likely to be caused by infection in the tooth or gum, this will need to be treated by the dentist. They may open the tooth or gum to help drain the infection away and may prescribe antibiotics to ensure that all the infection clears. You will require further treatment, often a root canal treatment to ensure that the infection does not keep reoccurring.

  • Chipped or Cracked Tooth

Rinse your mouth to remove any remaining loose pieces of the tooth, to prevent you swallowing them.
The dentist may be able to repair the tooth with a new filling, a crown or in the worst case the tooth may need to be extracted. If the tooth does need to be extracted the dentist will be able to advise you of the next options, whether this be a bridge, denture or implant.

  • Lost Filing

As a temporary measure until you see the dentist, use an over the counter temporary filling material to fill the hole. Your dentist may be able to replace the filling or crown the tooth to return it to its former state.

  • Knocked out Tooth

If a permanent tooth is knocked out by a direct impact, trip or fall. If you can replace the tooth into the gum as quickly as possible, making sure it is facing the right way. If it is not possible to reinsert the tooth, seek immediate dental help. There is the highest possibility of saving the tooth if you are seen by a dentist within an hour of the accident.

  • Broken braces and wires

If a wire breaks or becomes loose and is poking your cheek, tongue or gum place a small amount of orthodontic wax (ask your orthodontist for some wax) over the end to provide protection until you can attend to have the problem fixed. Never cut the wire as you could end up swallowing it!

The Essex Smile Centre will be open as normal until Friday 23rd December. Should you have any problems in the run up to Christmas call the practice on 01268 742333 before 10am and we will endeavour to see you as quickly as possible, ensuring you are able to enjoy your Christmas dinner in comfort.

The Essex Smile Centre will be closed on Monday 26th and Tuesday 27th December and Monday 2nd January. If you are a private or Denplan patient and have a dental emergency when the practice is closed please ring 01268 742333 the answerphone will give you details of how to contact the emergency dentist. If you are an NHS patient, please call 111 for further advice. The practice will be open as normal between Christmas and New Year.

For Denplan patients who are away from home, please contact the Denplan Emergency line on 0800 844999 if within the UK or +44(0)1962 844999 if abroad. Denplan will then be able to help you find a suitable dentist within the local area to help provide you with emergency treatment.

All the team at The Essex Smile Centre would like to wish our patients a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We look forward to seeing you all in 2017.

Mouth Cancer Action Month

24th November 2016

Mouth Cancer Action Month aims to raise awareness of mouth cancer and save thousands of lives through early detection and prevention. Each year over 7,000 people are diagnosed with mouth cancer. It is one of the few cancers still seeing an increase in the number of diagnoses. This is equivalent to 18 people each day being told that they have the disease!

Mouth cancer can affect the lips, tongue, cheeks and throat. Mouth cancer can affect anyone but is more prevalent in people over 40, particularly men. Although recent years have seen more diagnoses in younger patients and in women. If mouth cancer is caught early enough there is around a 90% chance of survival, therefore it is incredibly important that you attend for regular dental appointments as your dentist when they examine your mouth, teeth and gums will be able to identify the early stages of mouth cancer.

Risk Factors

The main two risk factors for mouth cancer are tobacco use and alcohol consumption. The chemicals present in cigarettes, cigars and chewing tobacco all enter your body through your mouth. Over time these chemicals can affect the saliva in your mouth, turning cells cancerous. Drinking large quantities of alcohol on a regular basis is also a risk factor. By combining the two you increase your chance of developing mouth cancer by over 30 times!

Recent reports have also linked mouth cancer to the human papillomavirus (HPV). HPV can be caught through oral sex and research suggests that is could soon rival smoking and alcohol as one of the main causes of mouth cancer.

What to look out for?

Mouth cancer can appear as a painless mouth ulcer that does not heal normally, as a white or red patch in the mouth or a lump or swelling.  It is important if you notice any changes in your mouth that you visit your dentist so that they can perform a thorough assessment. If they notice anything that gives them cause for concern, then they will refer you to the local hospital so that the consultant can perform further tests. Remember early diagnoses is key to getting the best possible outcome.

Top tips for keeping your mouth healthy

  1. Visit your dentist as often as they recommend for routine check-up appointments
  2. When brushing your teeth, be sure to look out for any changes in your mouth, any red or white patches or ulcers.
  3. Be sure to protect yourself in the sunshine by using a good protective sun cream on your face and neck and a barrier cream on your lips.
  4. A healthy diet, rich in vitamins, helps to protect against the development of many cancers
  5. Think about quitting smoking.
  6. Ensure you keep your alcohol consumption within the current guidelines.

If you are concerned about any changes in your mouth, do not hesitate to contact The Essex Smile Centre on 01268 742333 and book an appointment for a consultation today. If in doubt get it checked out!

Make this the year you quit smoking for good.

28th October 2016

With many people using Stoptober as the push they need to stop smoking, we look at the effects smoking can have on your oral health.

Most people understand that smoking is bad for their health. However, many people do not realise the damage that smoking does to their mouth, teeth and gums. In the long term smoking can cause tooth staining, gum disease, tooth loss and in severe cases mouth cancer.

Teeth Staining

The nicotine and tar present in cigarettes can cause your teeth to turn yellow very quickly and if you have been smoking for a number of years, they can turn brown. This can have a dramatic effect on your appearance and confidence.

Gum Disease and Tooth Loss

If you smoke you will have higher levels of bacteria present in your plaque, which if not removed can lead to gum disease. If you do develop gum disease, the lack of oxygen present in your bloodstream will prevent the gums from healing, nicotine also constricts the flow of blood. If you are a smoker, it is likely that any gum disease will progress quicker than for a non-smoker. Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults in the UK.

Mouth Cancer

Not only can smoking lead to lung and throat cancer, it is also one of the main causes of mouth cancer as well. Every year thousands of people die from mouth cancer brought on by smoking.

With all this in mind the team at The Essex Smile Centre have come up with their 5 top tips to help you quit

Tips for quitting

1. Set a date

Pick a date when you are going to stop and stick to it. Try to make sure that it is at a time when you are not trying to juggle too many other things. If it is a time of high stress you are much more likely to give in to temptation.

2. Think positive

This may not be the first time you have tried to quit smoking but that doesn’t mean it is not possible. Build on the experiences from when you have tried to quit before, what caused you to fail previously and what can you put in place to ensure that it doesn’t happen again.

3. Keep it simple

Do not attempt too much at once. Many people try to diet as well as quitting smoking, this is a recipe for disaster. Try to concentrate on one thing or the other, it may take a bit longer but you are far more likely to succeed.

4. Get Moving

Exercise can help to cut cravings and may help your brain to produce positive hormones making it easier to stay strong. This can be a good thing to do if you are used to having a cigarette after meals, go for a walk instead and create a new habit to curb the cravings.

5. Remember Why

Before you stop, make a list of all the reasons that you want to quit smoking. If you find that you are wavering or think you might have a relapse, get the list out and read it. This will help you to focus on the positives of not smoking until the craving has passed.

6. Rewards

Why not give yourself a pat on the back for quitting smoking and reward yourself with a little gift?
There are two good reasons for rewarding yourself:

You are congratulating yourself for doing well for making a start or reaching a personal quit smoking milestone. Well done!
You are practicing new or other ways of rewarding yourself. That smoking is no longer associated with ‘reward’, instead other things are.
Your quit smoking reward need not be big. Ideas include:
Buying a DVD or a CD
Buying some new clothes or shoes
Getting your hair cut
Buying something for a hobby
Eating something yummy
Putting money in a jar you would otherwise spend on smoking and watching it grow

If ever there was a great time to reward yourself, it’s when you quit smoking!

If you would like you Dental Health checked and advise on giving up smoking, do not hesitate to contact The Essex Smile Centre on 01268 742333 to book an appointment.

Protecting your teeth whitening investment

23rd September 2016

You’ve done it! You have just completed a course of teeth whitening and are reaping the rewards:

  • A healthier looking smile
  • The confidence to smile and smile often
  • Increased confidence
  • A more youthful appearance

But how do you ensure that you get the best possible return on your investment? In this blog we look at ways to ensure that your teeth stay as white as possible for as long as possible.

Avoid Foods that Stain

Following teeth whitening treatment there are certain foods and drinks that you should be mindful of to help maintain your now pearly white teeth.

These include wine and tea, both of which contain high levels of stain promoting tannins. Ideally try to intersperse glasses of water between each glass of wine and consider switching to a herbal, green or white tea which have been shown to have much lower staining capacity.

Fizzy drinks, no matter what their colour, are sufficiently acidic to promote the staining of teeth by other foods and drinks that you have at the same time. This is further exacerbated if the fizzy drinks are cold.

Berries and dark sauces also have the ability to stain your teeth.

A good rule of thumb to follow is that if you would worry about a food or drink staining your clothes or table linen, it will also have the ability to stain your teeth.

Stop Smokin

One of the effects of smoking is staining on the teeth due to the nicotine and tar in the tobacco. It can make your teeth yellow in a very short time, and heavy smokers often complain that their teeth are almost brown after years of smoking.

Consider stopping smoking to reduce the amount of staining on your teeth.

Put in place and effective oral hygiene routine

 A good oral hygiene routine helps to remove plaque, calculus and helps to keep staining to a minimum.

 We would advise that you:

  • Brush your teeth twice a day using a fluoride toothpaste

  • It is best not to brush your teeth until at least one hour after eating as brushing straight away can cause tiny softened particles of enamel to be brushed away

  • Change your toothbrush every three months to ensure you are getting the most effective clean.

  • Use interdental cleaning aids to brush in between your teeth daily

Eat a balanced and varied diet

A wide variety of fruit and vegetables in your diet help to ensure you get all the vitamins and minerals you need and help keep your teeth and gums healthy.

To help your teeth and general health aim to eat 3 meals a day plus no more than two snacks. If you do snack stick to crudities and nuts rather than sweets and chocolates. Nuts provide a great source of calcium and vitamin D which have been shown to help improve your dental health.

Visit the hygienist

A healthy smile is so important in defining who we are and how we interact with each other. Recent studies have shown that people are more likely to underestimate a person’s age if they smile.

Alongside your regular at home oral hygiene routine, it is a good idea to visit the hygienist for regular scaling and polishing. The hygienist will be able to remove staining caused by smoking, food, drink and other lifestyle factors. They will also be able to advise you on the best oral hygiene products to keep staining to a minimum in between appointments.

If you would like to find out more about teeth whitening and keeping your smile bright do not hesitate to contact The Essex Smile Centre on 01268 742333 .Please go online to book your dental health examination or if you are considering a smile makeover book a free smile evaluation today.