Synergy Parkside Dental Centre
Goldsworth Park Health Centre
Woking GU21 3LQ

Straighter Teeth For A More Attractive Smile!

Orthodontic treatments offer a great way to a beautiful, even smile.

Invisalign Straight TeethWith the additional time that many of us have involuntarily had over the last few months, we may have idled some of it away by dreaming, or looking in a mirror and thinking that there are some things we would like to do to improve our appearance.

The first step towards this for many, will likely have been a trip to the newly opened hairdressers for a long overdue haircut. Others though, will possibly be looking at longer term goals as well.

One problem that we may have noticed about our appearance, and especially when we smile,  is something that happens over time and which cannot be corrected overnight. We are talking about uneven or crooked teeth of course.

As teeth start to leave gaps or to overlap, they not only spoil an otherwise attractive smile, but can also make cleaning more difficult and potentially lead to oral health issues such as decay and gum disease.

So if you have been considering doing something about your crooked teeth, the Synergy Parkside Dental Centre can help!

Invisalign

One of the most popular orthodontic systems available at our Woking practice to correct uneven teeth is Invisalign. This system uses an entirely different method to traditional braces. Whilst older style braces use a series of wires and brackets that exert pressure on your teeth to reposition them, Invisalign uses a series of plastic trays to the produce the same effect. These trays are made from impressions that we take of your own teeth and use a high quality medical grade transparent plastic. This customised method means that any discomfort is minimised, with each tray applying a small amount of pressure to gradually coax your teeth into the correct position.

The trays are transparent and are fairly discreet when wearing, indeed they are barely visible to those around you. They are also removable and should be taken from the mouth when you are eating and when you brush and floss your teeth in the morning and evening. It is important to make sure that both your teeth and the trays are cleaned well before you return them to your mouth. Failing to do so could mean that sugars, acids and bacteria are trapped between the tooth enamel and the trays.

We are currently offering a free consultation and free scan for potential Invisalign patients. Why not contact us on 01483 766355 to find out more?

Inman Aligner

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Diabetes and Your Oral Health

Dental considerations for diabetic patients in Woking

Dentist examines patientIt is important for all of us to look after our teeth and gums well. Damaging them can have a significantly negative impact on our quality of life and can cause problems with eating and even our speech in some cases.

Gum diseases are also increasingly being linked to health issues such as heart disease. For most of us, looking after our teeth is a relatively straightforward issue. We brush and floss our teeth well and see a dentist at Synergy Parkside every six months for a check up.

There are some groups of people, however, who are at a higher risk of oral health problems than others. These include older people and cigarette smokers amongst others. One of the most common health conditions that can lead to more problems is diabetes.

Diabetes

Diabetes causes blood sugar level problems in the body and can lead to damage to the heart, kidneys, feet and eyes. In addition to this, high blood sugar levels can cause damage to the blood vessels which subsequently reduces the amount of oxygen supplied to the gums. Because of this, our Woking patients who are diabetic are typically at a higher risk of gum disease than non diabetics.

Due to this increased risk, it is important that diabetics not only follow their GPs advice and take any necessary medication to keep the diabetes under control, but also pay additional attention to their oral health.

Gum disease problems

As we mentioned earlier, gum disease has been linked with a number of general health issues. Because of this alone, it is worth making sure that your gums are looked after. With poor gum health come a number of unpleasant symptoms which might include soreness, inflammation, bad breath and wobbly teeth. This latter symptom is a particularly worrying one as it indicates that the infection has also affected the bone which supports the teeth.

This stage of gum disease, known as periodontitis, occurs when the bacteria causing the disease has reached beneath the gum line and has attacked the roots of the tooth and the surrounding bone tissue. As the bone degrades, it causes the roots of the teeth to become loose and wobbly. When this happens, there is a real risk that tooth loss can occur. Although a treatment known as ‘root planing’ or a ‘deep clean’ can be used to attempt to reverse this, it is not always successful and it is a far better approach to try to prevent gum disease from occurring in the first place.

Good gum care for diabetics

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Our Woking Dental Practice Is Open!

Welcoming patients back for treatment

Dentist in surgeryIt has probably felt like an eternity for some, and especially those of you who have suffered dental problems that did not qualify for urgent emergency care.

Troublesome teeth can seem all consuming and even a relatively short wait for treatment can seem like forever. For those who have had to wait almost three months, it has probably been a very difficult time indeed.

The good news is that we have now opened our practice again following the lockdown. This means that you can finally start to receive treatment again and we look forward to seeing you all as we try to catch up on lost time. There will, of course, be some changes with how we operate and we will cover some of these factors in today’s blog.

Appointments

Our reception team is now awaiting your phone calls for appointments but please do bear in mind that we may not be able to see you as quickly as we did before the pandemic. There are a lot of operational changes being made which are likely to reduce the number of patients that we are able to see each day. Our Woking dental practice team will obviously do all that they can, but the safety of our staff and patients must come first.

We will also be doing our best to see those of you who are in more urgent need of dental care. We certainly don’t want you to suffer unnecessarily and will do what we can to treat you as a priority. To the rest of you, please bear with us whilst we work our way through the most urgent cases. We are sure that you would want us to do this if it was yourself that was suffering.

PPE

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Is Stress Affecting Dental Patients?

Synergy Parkside Dental looks at the possible oral health consequences of ‘lockdown stress’.

Stressed dental patientAlthough there is no formal news about dental practices opening yet and it may still be a little while away, things do seem to be slowly improving in the Covid-19 crisis and some shops are now gradually planning to re-open (with appropriate distancing and other precautions) in the near future.

We are also hopeful that the government will look at the options for opening dental practices soon as there will be an increasing number of people who are suffering with fairly uncomfortable oral problems.

Whilst treatment is available in special dental units for the most serious cases, even a moderate toothache can be very distressing even with the use of painkillers. There will be other problems too that people will be having to deal with without professional dental support.

All of this will add to the general stress of the restrictions that have been placed on us. In today’s blog, we take a look at some of the ways that this stress may have affected your teeth and gums.

Reduced home dental care

Even if unintentionally, it is quite possible that some of us will not have brushed our teeth as often or as well as we used to do. This is likely to apply more in the morning as we are out of a routine. Even a small reduction in this could have an effect on our teeth and gums, leading to possible tooth decay and gum disease. If you suspect that you may have been ‘guilty’ of this, remember that it is not too late to start to improve this now with regular brushing and flossing.

Increased snacking

There have been reports that, perhaps unsurprisingly, there has been an increase in snacking during lockdown. Whether this is through boredom or stress doesn’t really matter in terms of the result. Any snacking over a period of time is not good for the oral health of our Woking patients. Even relatively healthy foods, if consumed in this way, can be harmful as there is insufficient time in between snacking for our saliva to clear the mouth of food particles and excess bacteria. In addition to this, many ‘snack’ foods tend to be high in sugar, a well known problem for our teeth.

If you do snack; in addition to brushing and flossing, try to drink water after your snack, swilling it around your mouth before swallowing. This will help to remove some of the offending food particles.

Bruxism

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Children’s Tooth Care During the ‘Stay At Home’ Period

Challenges and solutions for looking after your children’s oral health at this difficult time.

Children with parentsDespite the slight changes initiated this week to start the easing of lockdown, the fact is that many of our Woking patients will probably still be spending most of their time at home.

Some will be working from home whilst others will not be able to work because the sector in which they normally do so is not yet allowed to open.

This, on its own, can be challenging enough, but for those of us at home with young children, the lockdown presents additional challenges. In addition to ensuring that they are not overly stressed, are getting a reasonable education and generally looking after their wellbeing, there is also the problem of making sure that their oral care is catered for.

Watch the ‘sugar treats’

It is likely that most of our Synergy Parkside patients who are parents of young children will have noticed an increased demand for sweets and fizzy drinks! The reality is that many young children will be bored, despite our best efforts, and will also have a lot more time on their hands. As many of them will probably know where we hide the sweets, and those that don’t will make demands until we finally relent, there is every likelihood that our children’s sweet consumption will rise during this period of lockdown.

Although we may allow a little more leeway than usual, it is still advisable to try to keep sweet consumption down to a sensible level. At all times, especially now, it is also important that we make sure our children are cleaning their teeth well.

Where young children are concerned, we need to make sure that they are brushing their teeth twice a day, both morning and the last thing before going to bed (with nothing but water afterwards). There are two things that we particularly need to do.

Firstly, their routine is likely to be very different now, and whereas they may have previously brushed their teeth before going to nursery or school, they may be going straight from bed to the TV. Make sure that you find a new regular time for them to brush their teeth in the morning before they settle into their new routine. Secondly, this is a good time to make sure that they are brushing their teeth correctly and for long enough. To do this, we may need to supervise our children when they brush their teeth. Remember, routine dental treatments can’t currently be carried out and a child at home with toothache is not going to be fun for the child or the parents!

Oral health education

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Don’t Ignore Your Gum Health!

‘Stay at home’ lockdown isn’t great but it does give us chance to review personal oral care

Healthy teeth and gumsMany of you will still be at home, unable to work, or perhaps working from home. One thing that undoubtedly is happening though, is that many of us are having to find ways of filling time that we didn’t previously enjoy.

While some people are learning new skills, others may just be watching more TV; everybody has a different way of coping with the current situation and that is fine. Sometimes though, it is good to turn off the TV and do something practical. In today’s blog, your regular Woking dentists offer a small suggestion that will only take up a few minutes of your day, but could significantly contribute to you having a healthier mouth.

Looking after your gums

How much do you think about your gums when you are cleaning your teeth? Most of us probably think little about it unless they feel sore or are inflamed, or perhaps even bleeding. Like most things to do with our health, it is better to look after it in a preventative way than have to treat it later. The same applies to our gums. If we neglect our gums, not only will we often suffer from discomfort, but, if left untreated, it can result in teeth becoming loose or even falling out.

There are 2 key stages to gum disease; these are generally known as gingivitis and periodontitis.

Briefly, gingivitis sometimes causes symptoms such as sore or inflamed gums, bleeding and also halitosis (bad breath). Periodontitis can have similar symptoms but also affects the roots of the teeth and potentially, the surrounding bone structure. When this becomes infected, teeth may become loose and even fall out.

Prevention of gum disease

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Continuing Our DIY Oral Care Advice For The ‘Stay At Home’ Period

Further advice for AJ Dental Group patients whilst we are closed due to Covid-19

Eating an apple with good teethIn our last blog, we offered advice to our Woking patients about what to do to help keep their teeth and gums healthy during this current ‘lockdown’. Hopefully, this advice will mean fewer dental problems will arise during this period.

As the current UK advice on social distancing now looks likely to be extended for possibly a few more weeks, it is almost inevitable that some dental issues will arise for at least a few of our patients.

Hopefully these will not fall into the ‘urgent emergency’ category but could, nonetheless, be uncomfortable until treatment becomes possible again.

Unfortunately we cannot carry out any ‘face to face’ treatments at the moment, but you can still call us for dental advice. We will possibly be able to refer you to an emergency regional dental centre but this will only be for true emergencies.

Although we generally advise against home treatment for dental problems and encourage patients to see us as soon as they can if they have a toothache etc, this is currently not possible. So to help those of you who aren’t fortunate enough to avoid problems during this time, we offer some helpful ‘treatment’ advice below.

Toothaches and sensitive teeth

Even a relatively minor toothache can be uncomfortable and will make this period feel longer that it is. There are a number of practical things that you can do to relieve it though.

Anti inflammatory tablets

These tablets can help to relieve some of the discomfort associated with a toothache and also help to reduce swellings. Most of us will have some of these at home in the form of paracetamol or ibuprofen but please be certain that they are suitable for you before taking them.

Toothpastes for sensitive teeth

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Looking After Your Teeth During The Prolonged Stay At Home

Advice from our Woking dentists about keeping your teeth healthy whilst ‘isolating’.

Taking care of your teethHopefully, all of our patients are following government instructions and staying at home wherever possible. These are challenging times for everybody and boredom and anxiety are likely to be problems for a lot of people.

Whilst the key health issue here is obviously the Covid-19 virus and hopefully avoiding it, we also urge patients of the Synergy Parkside dental practice practice to continue to look after their teeth as well as possible during this extended period at home.

There are some potential pitfalls for our oral health in the weeks and months ahead, but with a little thought and care, most of us will be able to keep our teeth healthy for when this difficult period is behind us.

The basics

Make sure that you have the essentials available. This includes a toothbrush, toothpaste and dental floss. You should be able to get most of these from the shop when you do your other essential shopping. If not, with a bit of searching, you should be able to find these online. If possible, try to keep a spare toothbrush or make sure that you have replacement heads for an electric brush. If you suspect that you have any symptoms, you should throw away your old toothbrush or change the head of the electric one when the infection has passed. This will help to avoid re-infection if that is possible and also helps avoid infecting others who use the bathroom with you.

Your routine

Many of us will have drastically changed routines for the next several weeks. This can cause us to forget to do things that we usually do. For example, brushing our teeth might be the last thing we do in the morning before leaving for work. If you are now working from home or are temporarily out of work, try to write down a routine that works for you and creates one where you brush your teeth after doing something else, such as shaving or after you walk the dog in the morning. There are no hard and fast rules and you should use whatever works for you. But please try to keep the discipline.

Avoid too many comfort foods

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Dr Andrew Gough – Partner – Synergy Parkside Dental Centre

An occasional look at the roles of our Woking dental team

Dentist Andrew GoughMost of our blogs have been either about general dental care or specific treatments that we offer. These will continue, but we thought that it might be interesting for our patients to have a look at some of the specific roles carried out by individual dentists at our clinic.

In today’s blog, we will take a look at the role of Dr Andrew Gough who has been with us since the late 1980’s.

He is therefore one of our longest standing dentists and many of our patients will be familiar with him and his approach.

Making it fun

Can dentistry be fun? Most patients would probably disagree, but Andrew believes that it can be so and prides himself on his work with both children and older patients who are anxious about receiving dental treatment. With care, patience and the ability to explain clinical procedures clearly, many patients of a nervous disposition now find that they can see the dentist, if not actually looking forward to it, at least then with greatly reduced anxiety levels.

Smile makeovers

Andrew takes special interest in providing smile makeovers for his patients. Each patient is assessed individually to determine what treatments they need. This can range from something relatively straightforward such as a teeth whitening procedure, to more extensive treatment like dental veneers. All procedures are discussed and of course no pressure is placed on them to have any particular cosmetic procedure.

In addition to smile makeovers, Andrew is fully trained to provide wrinkle-reduction and dermal fillers for patients who wish to help roll-back the signs of facial aging.

Dental implants

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What Is A ‘Deep Clean’?

Looking at the difference between a clean by the hygienist and this more complex treatment.

gum diseaseAt the AJ Dental Group, our focus is on preventative care as far as is possible. Although we have every confidence in the procedures that we use to restore damaged teeth, there is no disputing that it is far better not to need the treatments in the first place by improving our cleaning and general oral care regime.

One of the ways that we do this is to encourage our Woking patients to see a dental hygienist on a regular basis. This not only allows them to learn about what they can do to keep their teeth and gums healthy but to also have a thorough cleaning known as a ‘scale and polish’.

Occasionally, we may have to advise a patient with poor gum health that they need to have a ‘deep clean’. Much as they might wish it was so, this procedure is not the same as a clean by the dental hygienist and is something very different as we shall see below.

Scale and polish

Let us first look at this procedure and what it entails and its purpose.

However well we brush our teeth, and even if we floss as well, there are always areas of our teeth that are next to impossible to keep entirely clean. It is in these areas that we tend to get a buildup of both bacteria and mineral deposits that form a rough surface. This surface will then collect even more bacteria, along with staining, and over time, this can lead to problems such as decay and gum disease. As we have mentioned before, gum disease can be quite uncomfortable, causing gums to become inflamed and sore and can also lead to problems like bad breath. Having a scale and polish procedure is an excellent way to help avoid it.

The procedure itself is relatively straightforward, non invasive and there is usually no need for a local anaesthetic in order for it to be carried out.

The first stage is to manually remove the excess tartar before ‘shattering’ and removing the rest using a sonic implement. Finally, the patient’s teeth are cleaned using a high speed brush to remove any final remnants and to leave the teeth and gum line as clean as possible. This procedure is usually carried out at six monthly intervals, or more frequently for those at higher risk of gum disease such as smokers and diabetics.

Deep clean

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