Planning For Whiter Teeth?

As dentists open for business, cosmetic dentistry will soon make a welcome return

A cosmetically enhanced smileSlowly but surely, we are emerging from the lockdown period which has seen us socially isolated and adrift from the things that we’re used to. Gone, for now, are the gyms, the theatres and live music but some entertainments and establishments such as pubs, are slowly starting to open again. The good news for our Epsom patients is that the Clock Tower Dental Clinic is also open to patients once more and we all look forward to seeing you again soon.

As with other dental practices across the country, our priority is to treat those who were not able to access emergency treatment during lockdown and who may be in pain or have badly damaged teeth that need treating. This may mean that other treatments such as cosmetic ones might be delayed a little. We expect these to be available again soon though, and you may wish to use this time to consider your options for improving the appearance of your teeth and smile.

Discoloured and stained teeth

Lockdown may not have been kind to our teeth. Although it will have varied according to the individual, most of us will have had coping mechanisms to help us through, possibly including comfort eating, drinking more than usual and perhaps even starting smoking again for some ex smokers. All of the above and the fact that you will not have been able to see a dentist, means that not only problems such as tooth decay were likely to occur, but also the way that our teeth look is likely to have been affected. This is particularly so for their whiteness.

Many commonly consumed foods and drinks can cause staining of the teeth. These include tea, coffee, red wine or foodstuffs like dark coloured berries, soy sauce, curries and more. Although diligent oral care at home will help to remove this, over time, a darkening of the tooth surface is almost inevitable.

There will be some of you too, who sometimes have whitening procedures repeated to maintain a consistent level of whiteness of your teeth. As such, some of you will have had to miss appointments due to our temporary closure and are likely to have noticed a deterioration in the whiteness of your smile.

All is not lost though, and we should soon be able to help that white smile to return! There are two key procedures that we can use to achieve this.

Teeth whitening

This treatment is effective for most people who have stained teeth. It is an excellent and non-invasive way to whiten your teeth by up to 8 shades. It works on both surface staining of the enamel as well as the discolouration caused by the inner part of the tooth becoming naturally darker as we become older. At the Clock Tower Dental Clinic, we use the Zoom2 chairside teeth whitening method which allows us to whiten your teeth in around one hour at our convenient Epsom practice.  The procedure is painless and involves no surgery at all.

Our cosmetic dentists will prepare you for the treatment by protecting your gums to prevent any irritation from the whitening gel we use. Once the gel has been applied, a special light is used to activate the gel and within the space of approximately one hour, you will notice a marked improvement in the colour of your teeth.

Please do feel free to bring your MP3 player or other entertainment with you when you come for your appointment. We also have a DVD player if you wish to bring your own film to watch.

Dental veneers

Although most people will benefit from a teeth whitening procedure, there may be cases where the enamel is so badly stained that this will only have a limited effect. In cases like this, you may wish to consider teeth veneers as an alternative. Rather than whiten the existing tooth enamel, veneers can be used to replace a fine layer of the affected surface. This often requires that the tooth is prepared to receive the veneer, although some types can now be attached directly on top of the existing enamel. However the latter has to be evaluated very carefully to ensure that the veneered teeth don’t look more pronounced than usual.

Where standard veneers are used, we will use a dental burr to ‘shave’ off a very fine layer of enamel from the tooth surface. This is then replaced with a porcelain veneer of the equivalent thickness, attached using a powerful clinical adhesive.  The new veneer will then be shaped and polished, ensuring that it looks natural. One benefit of veneers is that they maintain their whiteness for a very long time. You will need to brush and floss as usual to ensure that the natural part of the tooth which supports the veneer, remains in good health.

We are looking forward to seeing you all again as soon as possible. We we are here to help you have healthy and attractive teeth, so for more information or to book an appointment, whether for general or cosmetic dentistry, please call the Clock Tower Dental Clinic on 01372 720136.