Category: Dentistry

Blog posts and articles about general dentistry treatments from Dr Nishan Dixit, your Harrow dentist

Do Braces Hurt?

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit is the founder and principal dentist of Blue Court Dental. Patients enjoy his relaxed, friendly and gentle approach while experiencing his meticulous attention to detail. He has a special interest in providing smile makeovers, natural-looking white fillings and cosmetic braces, but also provides a range of treatments from preventative and general dental care to complex dental rehabilitation.
Dr Nishan Dixit

Latest posts by Dr Nishan Dixit (see all)

We are very often asked a whole range of questions about the comfort of wearing dental braces. This blog post seeks to answer a range of these questions, particularly about braces being comfortable on your cheek and lips.

What is the effect of braces on face shape and lips?

You will usually not find that braces affect the shape of your face and lips unless you have a tooth which is particularly sticking out, you might find that until this tooth moves that the brace over this area stands out more noticeably.

If you have a tooth which sticks out and you’re worried that the shape of your lip will be affected then it’s worth asking about different types of braces. Some types of braces fit on the inside of your teeth and therefore don’t affect your face shape and lips. Other braces, such as Invisalign used ultra-thin clear aligners rather than conventional brackets and wires. These also can be more imperceptible than conventional orthodontic braces.

How do I stop biting my cheek after I get braces?

Biting your cheek after braces can be quite a common problem. You might bite your cheek once by accident but this area then swells and you end up biting it more often, creating a vicious circle. If you bite your cheek try eating on the other side and using a baby teething gel to relieve pain.

Using baby teething gel to help orthodontic brace pain

Orthodontic wax
Image credit: www.sunstargum.com

If you have fixed orthodontic braces then make sure you apply your orthodontic wax over this area to ensure that your cheek doesn’t rub on the braces.

 

Do braces hurt?

Typically braces don’t hurt although there might be some mild discomfort. Whenever you have a new aligner (if you are having Invisalign) or have your wire adjusted then you will feel the initial pressure on your teeth. This can reveal itself as mild discomfort or feelings of sensitivity. You should however find that this begins to disappear after approximately 3 days. It’s also worth bearing in mind that each time you go the same procedure will cause the same feelings of discomfort, simply being aware of this fact can help enormously.

Do braces hurt during the procedure?

If you are having a removable orthodontic brace such as an Inman aligner or Invisalign then there will be no discomfort at all during the procedure. The only discomfort you might encounter is during the initial impression stages, many people dislike the impression goo which dentist use. If this is you then it will be worth looking out for a dentist which uses a digital scanner to take a 3-D photographic scan of your teeth rather than have to have the conventional impression. This can make the whole procedure of having braces extremely comfortable.

Even if you are having fixed orthodontic braces the procedure is also painless. You may, however, notice some mild discomfort a few days after the braces fitted whilst your teeth adjust to being under the pressure of orthodontic treatment. Staying power is of prime importance with orthodontic braces, not just when the braces are applied but afterward to ensure you get the best results.

How do I prevent braces from rubbing the inside of my cheek?

The secret here is to always use the wax which your orthodontist or dentist provides for you. The wax is easily mouldable to fit over the orthodontic brace/bracket and stick to it. It then ensures that the inside of your cheek glides smoothly over the wire and brackets without rubbing.

How long does it take for you to get used to braces?

You should find you get used to orthodontic braces quite quickly. You may find that you need to adjust your diet (avoiding sticky foods) and possibly sticking to soft foods initially. You might also require some over-the-counter pain relievers if you get any discomfort immediately after the braces are fitted.

How will your face change after dental braces?

no teethDental braces can have a dramatic impact on the way your face looks… If you want them to that is. Your teeth play a large part in supporting your lips and giving the appearance of use, just look at a photograph of someone without any teeth, their lips are wrinkled and they automatically look old even if they are not. Your orthodontic dentist will take this phenomenon into account when planning your treatment.

It’s also possible that during the process of moving your teeth you are able to exercise facial muscles in a new way. The muscles in your face can then build giving your face more defined features which is often a huge benefit.

Is it different playing an instrument with braces?

If you play a musical instrument such as the flute, clarinet or trumpet then it’s worth mentioning this to your dentist prior to going ahead with braces. You may find that having a removable orthodontic brace works better for you if you play such an instrument. You can then take the brace out whilst you play ensuring that you maintain your embouchure.

Photo by Toomaj F. Bungs from Pexels
Photo by Toomaj F. Bungs from Pexels

If the musical instrument you play involves a mouthpiece that your teeth rest on, such as a clarinet it’s worth considering that your teeth may have made an indentation in the mouthpiece of the instrument. As your teeth move they may not fit into this old indentation quite so well, meaning that your instrument playing might be affected. You may need to consider a new mouthpiece during or after orthodontic treatment.

How do you treat pain produced by the rubber bands in braces?

Just to be clear it’s not the elastic bands which cause any discomfort or pain, it is likely to be the brackets around which the bands are placed. The best way to keep paying to a minimum with these is to ensure that you apply the orthodontic wax which will be given to you when the braces fitted.

How long does it take to get braces put on?

You can usually expect an appointment for a couple of hours to have braces put on. If you are having Invisalign braces then the appointment will be much less as there is no actual fitting to be done.

Summary

We hope this article has given use and detailed information about the different types of pain or discomfort associated with different types of orthodontic brace. On the whole orthodontic braces don’t hurt and any discomfort can be easily remedied with pain relief bought in your local pharmacy. It’s also worth noting that this discomfort is temporary and should only last a few days after the braces are fitted and/or tightened.

10 Interesting Questions About Dental Implants

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit is the founder and principal dentist of Blue Court Dental. Patients enjoy his relaxed, friendly and gentle approach while experiencing his meticulous attention to detail. He has a special interest in providing smile makeovers, natural-looking white fillings and cosmetic braces, but also provides a range of treatments from preventative and general dental care to complex dental rehabilitation.
Dr Nishan Dixit

Latest posts by Dr Nishan Dixit (see all)

How strong are dental implants compared to real teeth?

As you will know, a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. A tooth implant has many links so it is clear to identify what we mean when we are talking about the strength of the implant. They are made up of the following:

 

  1. The implant itself which is implanted into your jawbone
  2. A trans-mucosal element which connects the dental implant under the gum to the restoration of the gum
  3. The screw which screws in the trans-mucosal element into the implant
  4. The restoration on top, the part that you see.

Some implant systems blend a few of these elements together, however the list above is relatively standard.

In times of extreme force applied to the restoration we don’t always want that force transmitted down to the dental implant. If the tooth implant were to fail then it can be a very costly procedure, therefore sometimes implants are designed with this screw which connects the transmucosal element to the implant as a failsafe mechanism. If too much force is applied to the restoration then this screw breaks, this protects the dental implant itself and means the repair, by way of replacing the screw is relatively simple, cheap and quick to do.

Nothing is as good as your natural teeth so we always recommend treating implants as second-best to keeping your natural teeth wherever possible.

Why are implants best for tooth replacement?

One of the things your dentist will always be wanting to do is to keep as much of your mouth intact and as healthy as possible. Dental bridges often mean reduction of the teeth either side of the gap in order to accept the new single tooth replacement. A dental implant on the other hand does not require reduction of adjacent teeth.

A dental implant also can help to stabilise gum in your jaw bone around the new tooth or teeth. When a tooth is lost the surrounding bone tends to collapse into the gap, this can lead to a loss of bone height around the gap. Having a dental implant placed immediately after a tooth is lost can help to prevent bone grafting in the future.

What are the pros and cons?

Dental implant pros:

  1. Can look like natural teeth.
  2. Support the surrounding bone and prevent it resorbing.
  3. Often the most cost-effective option when considered over the life of the implant.
  4. A wide range of options on how to restore the implant including crowns, bridges and dentures.
  5. Can last for many years.

Dental implant cons:

  1. May be the most expensive way to replace missing teeth in the short-term.
  2. A lengthy procedure including implant surgery.

Do dental implants work like real teeth?

A successful implant can work exactly the way a natural tooth works. They effectively work as a replacement tooth, looking and working the same as a natural tooth.

However:

  1. A dental implant does not have a periodontal ligament around it like a natural tooth, this acts like a suspension mechanism to protect the tooth. All forces placed onto the dental implants are transmitted directly to the bone.
  2. The dental implant does not have any nerves and so you cannot feel any pain or sensation through the dental implant

What do they really feel like?

Once an implant is placed and the teeth and gums have healed then the restoration attached to the implants will feel like natural teeth. The only exception to this rule is if you have removable dentures.

Which is better, dental implants or bridging?

Bridging often involves removing tooth structure from teeth either side of the gap that you wish to fill. If this tooth structure is healthy then this can mean potentially compromising the dental care of adjacent teeth. Dental implants on the other hand do not need to involve teeth either side of the gap meaning they are a more conservative option.

What’s better, dental implant or partial denture?

Modern dentures can look extremely lifelike and be very effective. However if you have a partial denture it will almost certainly have some form of clasp around the tooth as well as a plastic area which touches the gum and other teeth. A poorly fitted partial denture can irritate this delicate gum and cause recession.

Partial dentures are however much cheaper than dental implants but because that are often made of plastic have a much higher fracture rate.

Are dental implants safe?

With proper care and attention as well as a dedicated dental team dental implants have a success rate of up to 98%. The implant itself will invariably be made of medical grade titanium, amazingly the human body does not recognise titanium as a foreign object and so the bone will fully integrate with the dental implant. This makes titanium a truly biocompatible material to use.

Why are dental implants necessary?

Implants are never necessary. They are always an elective procedure. An important option is always ‘do nothing’, you in your dentist should always consider the ‘do nothing’ option for any treatment, weigh up the alternatives and decide if any treatment is right for you. The definition of ‘right’ will always be an individual decision based upon:

  1. Desired results.
  2. Affordability.
  3. Timeframe.
  4. Acceptability of treatment e.g. surgery etc.

 

Is a dental implant painful?

A common question is do dental implants hurt? Whenever you have any invasive dental procedure you will always be given a numbing injection. This is usually the most painful part of any treatment.

To help with the injection we recommend asking your dentist to use a numbing topical gel first, this gel gently numbs the gum so that when the needle goes in there is minimal pain.

You may also find that there is some mild discomfort after the dental implant has been placed, particularly in the days immediately after the surgery. Over the counter painkillers can usually help with this and the pain normally subsides after a few days.

How many implants am I likely to need?

This depends on exactly what your situation is. Dental implants are normally used to treat 2 groups of people:

  1. People with missing teeth
  2. People with loose or unstable dentures

In both cases the outcome is the same, implants restore your ability to smile, eat, chew and laugh again with confidence. Many patients also find that their dignity is restored and their ‘dental comfort’ is massively improved.

For people with missing teeth (or tooth), without dentures

If you have more than one tooth missing, then we will often place 2 (or even more implants) and ‘bridge’ the gaps as highlighted by the arrow in this photograph.

The custom made crowns that fit over the top of implants ensure that you will not see any metal and will be made to blend in to your surrounding teeth invisibly… no-one will ever know you ever had teeth missing.

If you have all your teeth missing then you will either need a denture, or a ‘full arch implant bridge’, dentures are explained below, but a full arch bridge will usually involve the placement of around 4-12 dental implants (it depends on your exact situation as to how many you will need).

Screwed gently to these implants will be a full new set of teeth which you are not able to remove yourself (we can remove them for deep dental cleaning periodically).

This is often the preferred option for patients with no remaining teeth as often a full arch bridge can be made to look exactly like your own teeth.

In some instances, with all implants, we may find that additional surgical treatments such as bone grafting are required. These are explained later on in this guide, but only a full clinical assessment by one of our implant specialists will tell for sure.

For people with missing teeth with dentures

If you currently have dentures and find that they are loose, then dental implants can help enourmously. We simply place 2 or 4 implants gently in to your mouth, then place some ‘clips’ inside the denture (like a press-stud), this means you will hear an audible click as your denture locks in to place.

Depending on your exact situation we may decide that making a new denture is best for you, or we may even be able to convert your existing denture.

So if you wear dentures and feel you are not able to go out for a great meal with your friends then this could be a perfect solution for you.

Blue Court Dental Centre provides dental implants in Harrow for the local people, including Wembley, Stanmore and Greenford.

Ways to manage your dentist fear

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit is the founder and principal dentist of Blue Court Dental. Patients enjoy his relaxed, friendly and gentle approach while experiencing his meticulous attention to detail. He has a special interest in providing smile makeovers, natural-looking white fillings and cosmetic braces, but also provides a range of treatments from preventative and general dental care to complex dental rehabilitation.
Dr Nishan Dixit

Latest posts by Dr Nishan Dixit (see all)

The British Dental Association estimate that around 25% of the UK population suffer from some form of dental anxiety with around 12% having extreme fears affecting their ability to attend the dentist.

Visiting the dentist is key to ensuring that your oral health remains good. Without good dental health gum disease can take hold meaning that more dental treatment is possibly required, thereby exacerbating the dental fear.

Finding ways to relax and stay calm at the dentist is what this blog post is all about.

Why are we scared of dentists?

The first thing to understand is that fear is a learned behaviour, think about it, we aren’t born afraid of the dentist, it is something that we have learnt to do as we have got older. Accepting this is an extremely beneficial thing to do as it means that if we can learn to be afraid then we can also learn to relax and be calm.

 

Fear of pain is one of the most common reasons people cite for being scared of the dentist, this is quite understandable especially if people have had bad experiences in the past. What is worth noting is that modern dental care has made extremely big advances in recent years. With topical numbing gels and fine needles injections can be extremely comfortable with no pain, this then also leads to painfree treatments.

Will dentists judge me and my teeth?

This is often another common reason people give for not visiting the dentist, a dentist is not there to judge or to criticise, we are here to help, encourage and educate you about how to stay dentally fit and healthy. A dentist cannot achieve this goal if they are judgemental so you will find that any good dentist will support and encourage you and not be judgmental.

What are my options if I’m afraid of the dentist?

The really important thing to understand is that you do have options. It’s quite common that people feel they have no options, especially nervous or anxious patients.

A good dentist that specialises in treating anxious or nervous patients will ensure you have as many options available to you as possible. Here are your options:

  1. Talking to your dentist. You should always ensure you have a dentist you can trust and talk to, a good dentist will take time to listen to your concerns and ensure they take your anxiety into account.
  2. Ensuring you stay in control. Make sure you agree a stop signal with the dentist before any treatment begins. Simply knowing that you can raise your hand at any point to take a quick break means you’re in control and can really help you relax.
  3. Breathe slowly and gently. Breathing slowly and gently helps muscle relaxation generally, if you just breathe slowly and gently throughout your treatment you will find you stay more relaxed.
  4. Ask about sedation. Some dentists offer gas and air via inhalation sedation. This can also help if you are feeling anxious.

How to stop being scared of the dentist

Relaxation techniques are a great way to stop being scared of the dentist. Understanding that fear of the dentist is a learned behaviour and can therefore be unlearnt is a key principle to accept.

Practising breathing techniques both before your appointment and during treatment can also help.

Requesting an early morning appointment is also a great way to ensure that any dental phobia is contained to a short period early in the day, rather than allowed to build throughout the day.

You may also find of bringing a friend with you can help to keep you calm.

Good ways to relax and calm the mind at the dentist

  • Enjoy a cup of green tea. Green tea has been shown to have a chemical, L-Theanine, which has been shown to elevate levels of serotonin and dopamine in the brain which can help you relax.
  • Chew sugarfree gum. This can help to keep saliva flowing and prevent your mouth from drying out. It’s also been shown to lower anxiety and control cortisol levels. Of course you can’t do this whilst in the chair!
  • Remember to breathe slowly and gently. You could do this in the waiting room of the dental practice and during treatment to help relax.
  • Visualise your happy place. Most people have a happy place that they think of, this could be a holiday or a time you spent with friends. Visualising this whole experience can be extremely relaxing and calming.
  • Listen to calming music. This type of music can be different for each person but listening to the music you find relaxing and peaceful can also help you with your dental anxiety.

We hope you have found the information contained in this blog post useful, our dental practice in Harrow is a friendly and calm practice, taking time to listen to your needs and concerns and help out wherever required with any dental fears.

Just remember, it’s good to talk…

 

Why do I have tooth sensitivity?

Many people suffer from sensitive teeth for a variety of reasons, this article highlights why you may suddenly develop sensitive teeth, what you can do about it at home, what treatments the dentist may be able to offer you and how to reduce the pain from tooth sensitivity.

What causes tooth sensitivity?

diagram of a toothYour teeth are made up of three primary layers:

  1. The nerve and pulp. This is the deepest living part of your tooth, it contains the nerve and has blood flowing through it to keep your tooth alive, it is protected by two out of protection layers.
  2. The dentine. This is the softer portion of your tooth, it gives the tooth it’s primary colour and its role is to support the hard yet brittle outer enamel.
  3. The enamel. This is the hardest substance in the human body and protects the outer portion of your tooth.

Sensitivity occurs when hot or cold substances, such as eating ice cream, get too close to the nerve, there are many reasons this could happen, including:

  • Tooth wear caused by over brushing.
  • Gum recession caused by over by over brushing or general ageing.
  • Cracked teeth caused by trauma.
  • Decay in teeth caused by poor oral hygiene.
  • Tooth grinding or clenching.

Why are my teeth suddenly sensitive?

The key to understanding this is to think about how the hot or cold feeling may be getting through to the nerve. If you have had a recent trauma then perhaps the tooth is correct. If you haven’t been to the dentist for a while perhaps there is an area of tooth which is decayed.

The image below shows gum tissue recession around the gum line, possibly caused by over brushing. The enamel is thin in this area which can easily lead to teeth sensitivity.

Image Credit: www.implantdentist.co.nz/procedures/gum-regeneration/
Image Credit: www.implantdentist.co.nz/procedures/gum-regeneration/

If you can’t immediately identify what the problem is then visiting a dentist or dental hygienist may be best option.

How do you stop sensitive teeth pain

If you have sensitive teeth with no obvious cause then you may find that using a protection and relief toothpaste such as Sensodyne may help.

How does Sensodyne work?

These toothpastes work because there are tiny holes, called tubules, in the dentine of your tooth. If the enamel becomes eroded away then these tubules can transmit the hot and cold through your tooth. These toothpastes work by quickly creating a barrier so that the hot and cold feeling can’t be transmitted to the nerve.

However, it’s worth noting that these types of toothpastes WILL NOT work if the sensitivity is caused by excessive enamel or dentine loss such as cavities, excessive wear or cracks caused by trauma.

How long does tooth sensitivity last?

Tooth sensitivity is usually only instantaneous when the nerve becomes exposed to hot or cold. Remove the hot or cold and the sensitivity goes away. However, the reality is that this is not practical to do on a day by day basis, we have to eat and drink after all! Unfortunately, if your teeth are sensitive they won’t get better on their own, you will either need to use a relief and protection toothpaste or visit a dentist to ascertain why your teeth are sensitive.

What does the dentist do for sensitive teeth?

The basic premise for reducing tooth sensitivity is to protect the outer surface of the tooth to prevent the hot and cold sensations been transmitted through to the nerve, or in extreme circumstances to remove the nerve itself. There are a variety of ways of treating sensitivity at the dentist, including but not limited to:

  • Fluoride treatments to strengthen tooth enamel. These fluoride gels can be applied topically at the dentist or trays can be provided for use at home.
  • Bonding. Composite bonding materials can be used to bonded to the outer surface of the tooth to rebuild the enamel where it has been lost. This can cover up the dentin hypersensitivity.
  • Surgical gum graft (Please see the explanation video below). If the sensitivity is caused by excessive gum resorption which exposes the more sensitive root of the tooth then a gum graft to replacing some of the gum tissue may be undertaken to cover up some of this exposed area around the gum line.
  • Root canal. In extreme circumstances a root canal can be used to remove the nerve of the tooth. This is not normally a preferred option and will only be undertaken in extreme circumstances.

Summary

One of the key things to focus on is brushing your teeth and maintaining good dental care throughout your life, ensuring you brush and floss regularly. Tooth sensitivity is a common problem, particularly in later life as the gum becomes more exposed and the teeth wear. Certainly, this is one of the best ways to prevent tooth sensitivity. If you are older then be aware about using a soft bristled toothbrush, watching to ensure you don’t consume too many acidic foods and drinks and be aware if you grind your teeth. Cold air can also affect sensitivity, so you may find you need to wear a scarf in cold weather.

 

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit is the founder and principal dentist of Blue Court Dental. Patients enjoy his relaxed, friendly and gentle approach while experiencing his meticulous attention to detail. He has a special interest in providing smile makeovers, natural-looking white fillings and cosmetic braces, but also provides a range of treatments from preventative and general dental care to complex dental rehabilitation.
Dr Nishan Dixit

Latest posts by Dr Nishan Dixit (see all)

What alternatives are there to amalgam fillings?

One of the things most dental practices want to do is to offer you alternatives to treatments, having a dental filling is no exception. There are a wide range of options when it comes to treating tooth decay with a dental filling and in this blog post, our Harrow dentist, Dr Nishan Dixit discusses what alternatives there are to the classic silver amalgam filling.

Types of dental fillings in the UK

There are a variety of materials that can be used for a dental filling, each is selected depending upon the material properties, what the material needs to do and your clinical situation. Those materials include:

  • Amalgam (silver coloured fillings).
  • Composite (white fillings).
  • Porcelain ( white fillings).
  • Gold.

Amalgam Filling Alternatives

There are a few alternatives to amalgam fillings, these typically include restorative materials such as glass ionomer white fillings, composite white fillings, porcelain white fillings and even gold fillings although these are not used very often nowadays.

Amalgam fillings

Amalgam fillings are still commonly used in the UK, particularly in NHS dental practices. The material is relatively cheap, easy to work with and durable. Amalgam silver fillings contain a mixture of silver, tin and copper which is bound together with mercury.

Mercury poisoning is a concern of many people with amalgam fillings. The most risky time for release of free mercury is during placement and/or removal of an amalgam filling, this is due to release of mercury vapour. Having an amalgam filling removed can potentially release more mercury than leaving it in place.

Several studies have shown that the amount of mercury released from fillings is extremely low, especially when left in place. However, due to their typically unsightly nature and potential to release mercury many patients are preferring to opt for a more cosmetic option.

Another problem with amalgam fillings is that you can get what is known as an amalgam tattoo. This is where the dark silver colour from the amalgam shows through the front surface of the tooth creating a dark effect around the gum making it look like it has a tattoo.

Composite fillings

These are one of the most commonly used alternatives to mercury fillings. Composite fillings are mercury free and are often a blend of fine ceramic particles mixed with a composite material which sets when a special light is shone on it. The composite comes in a variety of tooth coloured shades so your dentist can select the right one for you. Composite fillings may wear faster than your natural teeth so you may need to have them replaced a little more often.

Amalgam fillings versus composite*

Property

Amalgam

Composite

Wear (1 highest 5 lowest) 3 4
Fracture resistance (1 worst 5 best) 3 4
Cost (1 expensive 5 cheaper) 4 2
Loss of tooth structure (1 least 5 most) 4 2
Health concerns (1 unhealthy 5 healthiest) 1 4

How long do white fillings last?

White fillings typically last up to 10 years. Data shows that after five years approximately 75% of fillings remain. This has reduced to 50% after nine years. This is based upon research undertaken in 2001.

Can you have White fillings on front teeth?

Yes, white fillings on front teeth are often called dental bonding. They can either simply replace a small decayed area or cover the whole of the front of the tooth. They can also be used to add to teeth to make the teeth longer, if worn down, or to change the shape of a tooth.

Are there any side effects from white fillings?

Unlike amalgam where people are concerned about the side-effects from mercury, white fillings have a few inherent side-effects related specifically to the material used. Any side effects from a white filling are common to all types of filling and include:

  • Numbing of the area due to the anaesthetic used.
  • Sensitivity of the tooth for a few days afterwards.

 

How long after a filling can I eat

This depends upon the type of filling you have had, amalgam takes approximately 24 hours to harden completely, during this time you should eat softer foods and avoid anything sticky. The white filling is set and made completely hard by curing the composite with a light in the dental surgery. This theoretically means that you can eat straightaway after a white filling.

We do however recommend caution as you probably will have had an anaesthetic to numb the area whilst the filling was placed. It is better to  wait until the anaesthetic subsides before eating as you should be careful of biting your cheek and tongue as these area are still numb.

*Subjective data based on experience. Individual properties may vary depending upon the size, position and age of the restorations including the skill of the dentist that placed the original restoration.

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit is the founder and principal dentist of Blue Court Dental. Patients enjoy his relaxed, friendly and gentle approach while experiencing his meticulous attention to detail. He has a special interest in providing smile makeovers, natural-looking white fillings and cosmetic braces, but also provides a range of treatments from preventative and general dental care to complex dental rehabilitation.
Dr Nishan Dixit

Latest posts by Dr Nishan Dixit (see all)

‘Teenager happy with natural, durable restorations’ – As seen in Dentistry

Dr Nishan Dixit describes a case where submerged primary molars were restored using a simple technique with Venus Pearl composite.

Nishan Dixit

Read Full Article Here

 

Easy & Quick Straight Teeth

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit is the founder and principal dentist of Blue Court Dental. Patients enjoy his relaxed, friendly and gentle approach while experiencing his meticulous attention to detail. He has a special interest in providing smile makeovers, natural-looking white fillings and cosmetic braces, but also provides a range of treatments from preventative and general dental care to complex dental rehabilitation.
Dr Nishan Dixit

Latest posts by Dr Nishan Dixit (see all)

More more people are realising the benefits of having straighter teeth, not only to the way they look but also making teeth easier to clean and therefore keep healthy. With modern lifestyles it’s becoming increasingly common to want to have orthodontic braces  as quick as possible,  without having to wait months or even years for the result.

As an Invisalign approved provider we are proud to introduce you to Invisalign Go, the fast braces system for rapid results in Harrow.

Am I suitable for Invisalign Go?

Quick results can be achieved with this system because we are only attempting to move the anterior (front teeth).  It is typically these teeth in the aesthetic zone of your smile which have the largest cosmetic impact on the way you look. By just focusing on these teeth, which have smaller roots and therefore move quicker,  we can achieve straighter teeth quicker than many other systems.

So are you looking to straighten your front teeth only? Then you may be a candidate for Invisalign Go.

How quick is quick?

The average treatment time is 7 months, this means your individual treatment could be slightly less or possibly slightly more. If you wish to straighten both the top teeth and the bottom teeth this can be done at the same time and need not necessarily lengthen the treatment time from having one single arch only treated.

How will I know if these braces will work?

The beauty of using Invisalign is its ability to track and plan  your progress.  You will typically have  review appointment every 8 weeks and you will be changing  your fast aligners every 2 weeks.  It’s also possible for us to take digital photographs of your teeth and compare them against the digitally produced treatment plan which is done right at the beginning. The digital  treatment plan before you start treatment will work out where your teeth should be at any stage throughout the process, we can then use ongoing digital photography to compare progress against the plan.  Revolutionary!

What does Invisalign look like when being worn?

Almost invisible braces
Compare Invisalign to conventional braces

Because Invisalign Go uses clear aligners they are almost imperceptible and virtually invisible.

Take a look at the image here, if you look extremely closely you can just about see the edge of the Invisalign braces around the gum margin of the teeth in the image at the front. Invisalign really is virtually imperceptible in normal everyday living.

This means you can wear your clear aligners all day long with no one else knowing, a huge move forwards in orthodontic technology.

How do I get started with Invisalign Go?

The simplest way to get started is to request an appointment for a review, your dentist can then take a look at your overall dental health to ensure you are suitable  for this type of rapid brace, digital photographs may be taken as well is impressions which can then be used to create your digital plan treatment.

Treatment can then begin in a matter of weeks… Why not book your appointment today

Why do my teeth look yellow?

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit is the founder and principal dentist of Blue Court Dental. Patients enjoy his relaxed, friendly and gentle approach while experiencing his meticulous attention to detail. He has a special interest in providing smile makeovers, natural-looking white fillings and cosmetic braces, but also provides a range of treatments from preventative and general dental care to complex dental rehabilitation.
Dr Nishan Dixit

Latest posts by Dr Nishan Dixit (see all)

 

This is a question we get asked lots at our dental practice here in Harrow, so we thought we would take some time to take a look at the common reasons why your teeth may not be quite as white as you’d like to be… Some of those reasons are obvious but others aren’t!

What are you eating?

red white
Image credit: Master-isolated-images FreeDigitalPhotos.net

It sounds quite obvious but there are many foods which have any impact on the colour of your teeth. Some foods stain your teeth directly whilst others contribute to dental decay by being rich in sugar.

Foods which contain high amounts of sugar feeds the acid excreting bacteria which live in your mouth, the more sugar there is in your food the more this bacteria is able to feed and excrete the bacteria which then attacks your teeth causing dental decay. Teeth can then become dark either through the dental decay or by the bacteria forming solid deposits, known as plaque, which then become stained by the strong colours in some foods.

Some food on the other hand is naturally dark staining such as dark berries, tea and red wine. These may stain your teeth on their own but the staining is compounded if you have plaque on your teeth caused by a combination of poor oral hygiene and sugar in your diet.

Of course, so many of us like to eat foods like this, so if we want our teeth to be bright and white then we just have to get on top of our dental healthcare!

Are you brushing as well as you could?

Even if your diet isn’t too rich in sugar and you avoid the food with strong colours then your teeth could still be yellow then it would likely that your oral health care routine isn’t as good as it should be.

Quantity of bacteria in your mouth
Image credit: wellordie.com/health

Your mouth contains so many bacteria, more than the population of the world in fact, so it’s really important that you keep on top of this and remove as much bacteria and food as you can after each meal.

When brushing your teeth we recommend using a pea sized amount of fluoride toothpaste twice per day for 2 min each time. We also recommend flossing daily to ensure your teeth clean in between and then using a fluoride mouthwash in between meals (never after brushing as the mouthwash has less fluoride in than toothpaste).

Are you scrubbing rather than brushing?

anatomy of a toothYes, it’s possible to clean your teeth too much! If you scrub your teeth too much then the gum can recede as it will often become irritated due to the excessive brushing. As the gum recedes it may expose the softer dentine part of your tooth which is lower down towards the root. This part of the tooth is softer than the enamel (a part which you usually see) and is therefore more susceptible to both dental decay and staining.

When you brush, go easy and don’t scrub, if you visit a dental hygienist regularly they will be able to tell you if it looks as though you may be pressing too hard when you clean your teeth. It may also be worth considering an electric toothbrush, many of these have pressure sensors and light up red if you are pressing too hard, a really useful aid if you find this is a problem for you.

Your teeth just are naturally yellower!

Some people’s teeth are just not naturally as white as other peoples. Over the years celebrities have had so much teeth whitening that the commonly accepted shade for teeth is now considerably whiter than it was a few years ago.

Dental manufacturers have had to create new whiter and brighter colours for their materials to match this new trend, what was considered an average tooth colour 10 years ago would now be considered yellow.

Shade guide
Whiter shades have been created by the dental manufacturers to cope with the cosmetic demand of white teeth

Perhaps you are taking medication which makes your teeth look yellow?

The first thing to say is that you should never stop taking any medication that has been prescribed to you without first consulting your doctor. It has however been reported that some medications may affect the colour of your teeth, most often this happens if the medication is taken during childhood whilst the teeth are still forming, rather than extrinsic staining of the teeth at a later date in adulthood.

Some medicated mouthwashes can also stain teeth, so please ensure that you read the label of any medicated mouthwash that you may have been prescribed.

Rest assured though, if your teeth have been stained through using a medicated mouthwash this can easily be removed by your dentist or hygienist.

Do you smoke?

Well, you knew this would probably come up at some point! Smoking darkens teeth because it changes the delicate PH balance in your mouth, it also dries your mouth out which leads to an excessive buildup of bacteria. This bacteria not only has a rather noticeable smell, but also can contribute to increased rates of dental decay.

Plaque on teeth

The smoke itself also has many of these colouring components which, particularly when coupled with poor oral hygiene, can stain the teeth quite noticeably.

As a sidenote, if you have any damage to the gum in your mouth then smoking also slows down the healing process, just another reason to begin the quitting process.

You are older than you were yesterday!

It’s just a fact that as we age various things happened to our body! Gravity takes over and alas, our teeth can appear yellower. The reason for this isn’t because your teeth are actually going yellow, it’s because that as we get older the outer surface of the tooth (enamel) wears away, as the enamel wears away with age the yellower underlying dentine becomes more exposed. As that dentine nears the surface it has the effect of making the teeth look yellower.

This is often more prominent on the lower teeth towards the biting incisal edge. It can be noticed that there is significant yellowing or staining right on that chip area, this is known as secondary dentine and is a common concern with people in, shall we say, more senior years!

And the good news is…

The good news is that most of these problems can be quickly and simply resolved. If you give up smoking, look at your diet and ensure your oral health care routine follows the suggested procedure then you can have a big impact on the colour of your teeth. Your dentist can also whiten your teeth in a couple of ways.

If your teeth just have surface staining perhaps from smoking or food stains then this can be removed with an air abrasion technique. This blasts very small particles at the end at your teeth which very gently remove the surface stain. If however the enamel of your tooth is intrinsically not as white as you would like them teeth whitening could also be the perfect option for you.

What ever you decide, your friendly dentist in Harrow is here to help, please contact us today to book your appointment and begin your journey to brighter, whiter teeth.

 

How to Look After Children’s Teeth Properly

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit is the founder and principal dentist of Blue Court Dental. Patients enjoy his relaxed, friendly and gentle approach while experiencing his meticulous attention to detail. He has a special interest in providing smile makeovers, natural-looking white fillings and cosmetic braces, but also provides a range of treatments from preventative and general dental care to complex dental rehabilitation.
Dr Nishan Dixit

Latest posts by Dr Nishan Dixit (see all)

tooth and mirror

Most parents want to look after their children’s teeth in the best way possible but often find the advice given confusing or difficult to follow. In this blog post we set out to explain in simple terms  the easiest way to look after children’s teeth, prevent future problems and keep visits to the dentist to the absolute minimum.

1. Brush using the right kit, in the right way at the right time

Using the right kit

Children have smaller mouths than adults, clearly and so need to have a smaller toothbrush. If you try to clean a child’s mouth with an adult’s brush you will find that you will be missing parts of their teeth, particularly right around the back teeth. Use a child’s toothbrush with a pea sized amount of Children’s toothpaste. Children’s toothpaste has a reduced amount of fluoride compared to adults toothpaste, this ensures that your child does not receive too much fluoride.

Brushing in the right way

Brush your children’s teeth twice per day. Up until the age of 7 we recommend brushing your children’s teeth for them and then supervising after this age. When you brush clean for 30 seconds in each quadrant, top left, top right, bottom left and bottom right ensuring that you clean the biting surface, tongue side and cheek side of your Children’s teeth.

Brushing for the right amount of time

The whole process should take 2 min and this should be done twice per day.

2. Maintain a healthy diet

ID-10044145Ambro.Maintaining a healthy diet is important for overall body health  as well as dental health, but the two are linked. The simplest piece of advice, and probably the most important, is to watch the amount of sugar that your child has in their diet. It’s not just the added sugar (such as on cereal in the morning)  it’s the hidden sugar in so many  food items particularly fizzy drinks and processed food. A good way to monitor this is to use the governments sugar smart app which we have blogged about in the past.

Sugar is so damaging because it feeds the acid excreting bacteria which cause dental decay. Limiting the amount of sugar your child eats will have a dramatic effect on tooth decay.

3. Visit your dentist

We would say that, wouldn’t we! But it’s true, your dentist is able to detect the early warning signs of gum disease and dental decay before you will notice it at home. They can advise on your  child’s oral health care routine and let you know if there are areas that you are missing whilst you are cleaning. It’s extremely important to ensure  that your child’s over all dental health remains in good condition throughout their lives, and this starts from an early age.

Many people mistakenly believe that because children lose their teeth that they don’t need to worry about looking after them…… they will get a new set after all. This is  a misconception, the habits that we form at an early age will continue into later life. If your children don’t have a good oral health care routine with their baby teeth, why would they change that routine and habit when they lose their baby teeth? The reality is that they won’t and those same bad habits will continue through to the adult teeth…  Which don’t get naturally replaced.

For further advice and information  please request an appointment with our dental hygienist at our practice in Harrow, we’ll be happy  to answer any questions and give you advice on your own dental health care routine.

Images courtesy of  freedigitalphotos.net

Study claims that 100,000 patients per year are heading straight to A&E with dental emergencies

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit

Dr Nishan Dixit is the founder and principal dentist of Blue Court Dental. Patients enjoy his relaxed, friendly and gentle approach while experiencing his meticulous attention to detail. He has a special interest in providing smile makeovers, natural-looking white fillings and cosmetic braces, but also provides a range of treatments from preventative and general dental care to complex dental rehabilitation.
Dr Nishan Dixit

Latest posts by Dr Nishan Dixit (see all)

According to a new study by the BritishDental Association at Newcastle University has found that far more patients are attending accident and emergency with their dental emergencies than official government statistics state.

People visiting A&E for dental problems in the UK

The official government statistics claimed at around 14,500 patients with dental problems attend their accident and emergency department  (statistics from 2014/15). However, the British Dental Association’s research indicates that due to systematic under-reporting the figure is far more likely to be closer to 135,000 patients per year.

Henrik Overgaard-Nielsen, chairman of general dental practice at the BDA, said:

“Ministers keep underestimating how much their indifference to dentistry has knock-on effects across the health service. GPs and A&E medics are having to pick up the pieces, while the government’s only strategy is to ask our patients to pay more in to plug the funding gap.

“We are seeing patients who need our care pushed towards medical colleagues who aren’t equipped to treat them. As long as government keeps slashing budgets and ramping up charges, we will keep seeing more of the same.”

There are many reasons why NHS dentistry is struggling to cope with the demands of dental emergencies  and it’s not our intention to get involved with the politics of why that may be. The reality is that many dental practices may find it extremely difficult to cope with the bureaucracy and funding within the NHS, and so to provide their patients with the treatments of choice opt to work in the private sector only.

So is Private dentistry an expensive alternative?

The perception is often that private dentistry is a very expensive alternative however it is possible to see a private dentist, with all  of the  benefits that brings from as little as 56p per day, that’s less than the average mobile phone contract and less than a cup of coffee per day!

There are two ways to enjoy private dentistry for these low fees, let’s look at each in more detail.

1. Keep Your Mouth Healthy

It sounds obvious, but the more you do at home to keep your mouth clean, your teeth bright and your gums healthy then the lower your dental costs will be. According to research by the American Dental Association in 2013:

  • 56.8% of women brush their teeth twice a day
  • 49% of men brush their teeth twice a day
  • 50.5% of Americans floss daily

With only around half the population brushing their teeth according to the recommended amount  of twice per day it’s no wonder that dental health suffers!

2. Saving For Your Dental Treatment

If you took 56p per day and saved this in a bank account then by the end of the year you would have £206. This is enough for two comprehensive dental examinations without private dentist, including x-rays PLUS two appointments with the dental hygienist. This equates to £17.16 per month which is less than most people pay on a mobile phone contract, so the question has to be asked which is more important,  looking after your health  or paying for a mobile phone?

The cost of dental treatment

Blue Court Dental Centre is a local dental practice in the heart of Harrow offering private dental care to the local people. Please contact us today to make an appointment and explore your options from as little as £17.16 per month.