Benefits of Fluoride

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Have you ever thought about what the fluoride in our toothpaste does?

Fluoride is a natural mineral that is found in many foods and in all drinking water. Most toothpastes also now contain fluoride, and it is the main way that most people get their fluoride.

Many reports have been published throughout the world about fluoride. After many years, the scientific conclusion is that fluoride toothpaste and correctly fluoridated water are of great benefit to dental health, help to reduce decay, and cause no harmful side effects to general health.

Tooth decay is a major health concern worldwide and is still a big problem in the UK. Despite being preventable, it is one of the most common reasons for hospital admission in children.

Brushing your teeth with a fluoride toothpaste is one of the most effective ways of preventing tooth decay.

Fluoride Benefits

Fluoride is beneficial to teeth because it helps to:

  • Rebuild weakened tooth enamel.
  • Slow down the loss of minerals from tooth enamel.
  • Reverse early signs of tooth decay
  • Prevent the growth of certain harmful oral bacteria.

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Fluoride Levels

A range of toothpastes are available containing different levels of fluoride.

  • All children up to three years old should use a toothpaste with a fluoride level of at least 1000ppm (parts per million).
  • After three years old they should use a toothpaste that contains more than 1,000ppm fluoride.
  • Adults should use a toothpaste containing 1350ppm to 1500ppm fluoride.

Oral hygiene advice

It is important that although over the past year all our routines have changed, that we make sure not to forget our oral hygiene.

  • Brush at least twice a day using a fluoride toothpaste for two minutes.
  • Use interdental cleaning aids to clean between teeth in those areas that brushing alone misses. There are a wide range of interdental products available so there is bound to be one for you: floss, tape, interdental brushes, floss picks or an air flosser.
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  • Parents should supervise their children’s brushing, starting brushing as soon as their first tooth appears and using only a pea-sized smear of fluoride toothpaste until they are about 7 years old.
  • Spit your toothpaste out after brushing and do not rinse. This will help to ensure that the fluoride stays on your teeth longer.
  • If you use a mouthwash use this at different times to brushing to ensure that you do not wash away the beneficial fluoride from your toothpaste.
  • Aim to limit sugary foods and drinks to mealtimes to reduce the number of acid attacks your teeth must contend with each day.

If you would like more oral hygiene advice, call Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre on 01622 682 029 to book an appointment with our hygienist today.

The Dangers of DIY Braces

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Over the past few years there has been a large increase in the number of people looking to improve the appearance of their teeth with options such as clear braces and clear aligner therapy. DIY braces and at home teeth straightening options are popping up everywhere, promising dentist quality results at a fraction of the price. The convenience of mail order teeth straightening seems unbeatable, allowing you to straighten your teeth without the need for regular dental appointments. Unfortunately, things that sound too good to be true most often are!

With this in mind there are some things the team at Maidstone Dental & Implant Centrewant to make you aware of regarding your choice of teeth straightening.

What is mail order teeth straightening?

Companies have started to offer cheaper alternatives to attending the dentist for teeth straightening. These companies will send you an at home impression kit to take impressions of your teeth. Once these are sent back, they will be reviewed by one of their technicians, who determines if you are suitable for these aligners. If so, aligners are sent back to be worn for a prescribed period.

This may seem very similar to the process of teeth straightening through the team at Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre, but there are some very big differences.

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Teeth straightening requires supervision.

Moving teeth is a medical procedure and needs personal supervision by a dentist. The dentist can monitor how your teeth are moving and if necessary, they will adjust your treatment plan to ensure your teeth move at the most safe and efficient rate.  Moving teeth without a thorough assessment of the overall health of the teeth and gums could result in the loss of teeth, which can cause expensive and lifelong dental problems.

Training

Dentists have years of training and they will identify and treat serious oral health concerns before they even consider offering their patients’ teeth straightening treatments. Serious oral health problems, like gum disease and cavities can be overlooked with home kits because there is not a lot that can be seen from photos or impressions. Mail order teeth straightening  do not use x-rays to see the structure below the gum line and with mail order teeth straightening there is no way of knowing what level of training the people assessing your photos and impressions have.

More expensive in the long run

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Moving teeth too fast or with poorly fitting aligners can result in serious problems. A dentist adjusts treatment along the way to correct any orthodontic errors that crop up. Mail order aligners instead operate along the lines of wear it and hope for the best. This can mean that having paid for your mail order teeth straightening, you will then have to pay even more to see a dentist to repair the damage caused.

Teeth straightening is a medical treatment. Straightening your teeth and aligning your bite is a considerable commitment, that requires an experienced dentist. Why trust your smile to anyone else?

If you would like to find out more about teeth straightening, call Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre today on 01622 682 029 and book a consultation.

Manual Vs Electric. Which is best?

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We are all advised that good oral hygiene is essential to keep our teeth healthy. It is important to ensure that you brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes using a fluoride toothpaste. Using a toothbrush regularly helps to remove plaque and bacteria which if left can lead to gum disease and tooth decay.

Over the past few years, the number of toothbrushes available has increased dramatically and it is very easy to become overwhelmed by the vast array now available in the supermarkets and pharmacies. So which toothbrush is best?

In this blog, we will look at some key characteristics you should consider when next buying a toothbrush.

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Size

Choose a toothbrush with a head small enough to reach all areas of your mouth and that will be able to clean hard to reach areas such as the sides and backs of your molars. The toothbrush should have a long enough handle so you can hold it comfortably in your hand.

Bristle Variety

Look for a toothbrush with soft to medium bristles. If you pick a brush with hard bristles it is very easy to cause damage to your teeth and gums by over brushing. In the long term, this could lead to toothbrush abrasion, this is where the enamel becomes worn away over time due to over vigorous brushing. Once the enamel is worn away it cannot be replaced.

Effectiveness

There have been a large number of studies that have look at the effectiveness of electric verses manual toothbrushes and no difference has been found. It does not matter whether you use an electric or a manual toothbrush the key is to use an effective brushing technique to remove plaque.

Usability

The most important factor when choosing a toothbrush is whether you are going to use it and use it well. Some people prefer the clean from a manual toothbrush, others feel that an electric toothbrush cleans better. If you are comfortable and enjoy using your toothbrush you are more likely to use it for the recommended length of time

No matter what type of toothbrush you choose you should ensure that you change it every three months or sooner if the bristles become worn or splayed to ensure that you can brush your teeth effectively.

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If you are still unsure do not hesitate to ask the dentist or hygienist when you next attend for an appointment and they will be able to advise you on the best toothbrush to meet your needs. Call Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre on 01622 682 029 to book an appointment today. 

Restore your smile to its former glory!

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Dental implants are one of the most poplar was to replace missing teeth. A dental implant is a titanium screw that is placed into the jaw to act as an anchor for a crown, bridge or denture depending on the number of teeth to be replaced.

In this month’s blog we are going to look at the benefits of choosing dental implants to replace your natural teeth and the procedure involved to restore your teeth.

Benefits of dental implants.

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Dental implants are currently the closest possible replacement to having your natural teeth back and if they are cared for properly could last for over 10 years.

Dental implants have the highest success rate of any implantation treatment. However, as with all implants there is no 100% guarantee of success.

Dental implants can be used to support crowns, bridges or dentures. This means you may not have to have individual dental implants to replace each missing tooth, as they can support several false teeth.

Dental implants can help to stabilise your jaw, promoting the growth of new bone and reducing the risk of bone loss which can cause sagging and premature ageing to the face.

Dental implants will match seamlessly with your natural teeth so you should be unable to tell the restorations from your original teeth.

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Over the long term, dental implants can provide a cost-effective solution to replace your missing teeth. Dentures or bridges need to be replaced every 5-7 years so overtime the cost of these tooth replacement methods can easily exceed the high initial cost of a dental implant.

Dental implants can be used to securely anchor a denture. This removes the worry of your teeth moving when you talk eat and smile, which can be a concern for some patients with traditional dentures.

Dental implant Treatment

Prior to any treatment the dentist will complete a full assessment of your teeth and gums. They will also take x-rays to determine the level and health of the bone in your aw. If the bone is not healthy enough or there is not enough it may be necessary to perform a bone graft prior to dental implant placement.

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Dental implants are placed under local anaesthetic. You may experience some discomfort in the week following surgery as the bone begins to fuse to the implant, but this should be easily managed with over-the-counter pain killers. This will then be left for 3-5 months to form a secure foundation and to allow the bone to grow around the dental implant securing it in place. 

Once the dental implant has fully healed an abutment is fitted over the top. This will support the crown, bridge or denture.

Prior to starting any treatment, the dentist will provide you with a full written treatment plan explaining exactly what treatment will be carried out and the estimated cost.

Once in place a dental implant should be no more difficult to look after than your natural teeth and can be cared for with a good oral hygiene routine and regular dental and hygienist appointments.

If you would like to find out more and see if dental implants are the right treatment for you, call Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre on 01622 682 029 and book a consultation today.

5 benefits of Invisalign

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Unlike traditional teeth straightening techniques, Invisalign removable aligners are made of clear resin meaning that they are practically invisible when in place. With Invisalign achieving the smile of your dreamsdoes not have to be a big deal. In fact, it barely has to impact your day-to-day life at all.Over 9 million people worldwide cannot be wrong.

Treatment Process

Your dentist will first take an impression of your teeth to check whether they are suitable for straightening using the Invisalign system. Once it has been confirmed that you are suitable for the treatment you will be provided with a detailed treatment plan which will give you an exact picture of where your teeth will end up. This means you will be able to see the outcome of your treatment before committing.

So, what are the benefits of choosing Invisalign aligners over other teeth straightening treatments.

No Unsightly Metal Brackets – If you are looking to straighten your teeth but want to ensure that no one else will know, Invisalign is for you! When the aligners are in your mouth no one else will know you are in the process of straightening your teeth.

Removable for Important Events – This means that if you have a job interview, a wedding, or an important family event you can briefly remove the retainers. This means you will not need to worry about unfortunate photos of your teeth straightening process appearing for years to come.

Removable for improved oral hygiene – Another reason being able to remove your aligners can be useful is to ensure that you can thoroughly clean your aligners, teeth, and gums. You will need to brush your teeth after every meal prior to replacing your aligners and use interdental cleaning aids daily. Your dentist will also advise you of the best solution to use to keep your aligners looking their best. With wire fixed braces it can be very difficult and time consuming to clean braces thoroughly.

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Eat all your favourite foods – You do not have to worry about breaking brackets or wires when you eat certain foods, such as popcorn or harder-to-eat items. Invisalign aligners are removed when you eat and drink and this means you can continue to eat a full and varied diet including all your favourite foods without fear.

Invisalign aligners are comfortable to wear – You will not experience mouth sores or major discomfort while wearing Invisalign. Two common complaints made by people who wear wire braces. When wearing Invisalign retainers, it will take a couple of weeks or so to get used to the feeling of having something on your teeth throughout the day.

So, what are you waiting for? Call Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre today on 01622 682 029 and book in for a free consultation to see if your perfect smile is closer than you think.

Top tips for a kissable smile

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To make sure you are kiss ready this Valentine’s season, why not check out our range of treatments to make sure your ‘pucker-up’ is perfect.

At Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre, after the year we have all had we are all for any excuse to get people puckering up! So, in the spirit of Valentine’s Day, we are urging our patients to get kiss ready and to share their smiles with their loved ones.

Visit the Hygienist!

One of the best ways to help ensure that your teeth are kiss ready is to book an appointment with the hygienist for a scale and polish. During your appointment not only will the hygienist be able to remove plaque and staining caused by lifestyle factors, they will also be able to advise you on the best oral hygiene routine to ensure that your teeth stay in tip top condition in between visits.

Banish Bad Breath

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Bad breath is a common problem but not something you want to be worried about in the run up to Valentine’s Day. Bad breath is most often caused by the gases emitted by the bacteria present on our teeth and gums. Bits of food that get caught between your teeth will be broken down by the bacteria and cause an unpleasant smell. This can be further exacerbated by strong smelling foods and drinks such as garlic, onions, and coffee.

To keep your breath fresh brush your teeth twice a day using a fluoride toothpaste and use interdental cleaning aids to clean in between teeth once a day to ensure that 100% of your tooth surfaces are cleaned. A mouthwash containing antibacterial agents can also help to kill bacteria that make your breath smell unpleasant.

Teeth Whitening

Teeth whitening is an effective way of lightening the natural colour of your teeth without damaging the tooth itself. So, if you are looking to ensure your teeth are looking their best this Valentine’s day why not book in for a course of at home or in surgery teeth whitening.

Your smile will appear much brighter following teeth whitening, helping to improve your confidence and self-esteem for whatever this Valentine’s Day brings.

Smile Makeover

If you are looking for the complete package to give you the confidence to pucker up this Valentine’s Day, why not book a consultation with our dental team to discuss a smile makeover. The dentist will perform a full assessment of your teeth and gum and put together a bespoke treatment plan to give you a smile you can be proud of. This may include crowns, veneers, teeth whitening, teeth straightening, hygienist treatments, dental implants and facial aesthetics.

This Valentine’s day make sure there is nothing stopping you sharing your smile with the ones you love and get pucker up ready at Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre. Call Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre on 01622 682 029 and book a consultation today.

Looking to save money on your dental treatment

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Want to maintain a healthy smile, without blowing your budget? Here at Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre we have some top tips to help you save money on your dental care.

1. Attend for regular, routine appointments

It may be easy to postpone your routine appointments if you do not feel you have any problems with your teeth, but it is much easier to fix any problems if they are identified and treated early. Just remember, the bill for a small filling will be much less than when you require an emergency appointment for a large cavity or abscess.

2. Join our Club

Join our Club

Our Membership Plan has been set up to reward and look after our patients who visit the practice regularly. Our membership plans give you the peace of mind of being able to budget for your dental treatment with convenient monthly payments and the optional Supplementary Insurance provides the peace of mind of knowing that you are covered for dental accidents and injuries both at home and abroad.

Essentials

Our Essentials plan is a maintenance plan that covers the cost of your routine treatment. By spreading the cost into fixed monthly amounts, it is possible to save money compared to paying as you go

Comprehensive Plan

Our Comprehensive plan is a plan that provides for your routine and restorative dental treatment and the amount you pay each month is based on a dentist assessment on the health of your teeth and gums.

3. Set up a payment plan

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At Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre we want you to achieve your desired smile. To make this goal achievable for everyone, we offer dental financing options including a 0% finance facility. This makes large treatments more affordable by allowing you to pay for it over an appropriate period, ensuring that you can get the treatment you need to make you look and feel amazing.

4. Maintain good oral hygiene at home

Routine dental appointments will help to cut down on your dental costs, but in order to ensure that you do not get a scare at your next visit, you need to ensure that you stay on top of the day-to-day care of your teeth as well.

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  • Brush your teeth at least twice a day using a fluoride toothpaste
  • Use interdental cleaning aids daily.
  • Change your toothbrush every three months or more often if the bristles become worn
  • Cut down on how often you consume sugary foods and drinks.

If you would like to ensure you start 2021 as you mean to go on, book your routine dental appointments today at Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre on 01622 682 029.

New Year, New You

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The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing – Walt Disney

Your dental health is an important part of your overall wellbeing, so why not make this New Year the year you achieve the smile you have always wanted. What are you waiting for?

Here at Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre we can offer a number of different services which can help to improve the appearance of your teeth and smile.

Teeth Whitening

Teeth Whitening

Teeth whitening can help to improve the appearance of your teeth by removing staining and brightening the appearance of teeth. Teeth naturally discolour with age and this can be further exacerbated by smoking, drinking red wine, black tea, and coffee. Teeth whitening can be completed in as little as an hour in surgeryor can be completed at home at a time to suit you. Teeth whitening provides a relatively inexpensive way to dramatically improve the appearance of your teeth.

Teeth Straightening

If your New Year’s resolution is to correct problems with your smile caused by tooth crowding or crooked teeth, why not consider one of our teeth straightening procedures. Teeth straightening has the advantage of not only enhancing the appearance of your smile but also improves your oral health.

Dental Implants

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Worried by an unsightly gap caused by a missing tooth? Why not consider dental implants. Dental implants are currently the closest possible restoration to having your natural teeth back and if cared for properly can last for 10 years or more. Dental implants can provide the support for crowns, bridges and dentures so can provide a solution to either one or several missing teeth.

Facial Aesthetics

Facial Aesthetics can help to boost your confidence and enhance the appearance of your skin. Laughing, smiling, and frowning can all take their toll on your skin. Over time wrinkles deepen and this can have the effect of adding years to your face.  Here at Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre we can find a solution to keep your skin looking younger for longer.

Want to start the journey to a new you? Call Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre on 01622 682 029and book a consultation today.

Top Dental Emergency Questions Answered

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No matter how careful you are, dental emergencies can happen to anyone at any time. In this blog we look at some top questions, to ensure you know what to do should you have a dental emergency.

What is classed as a dental emergency?

Dental emergencies can be split into two main groups.

Visible damage to teeth – teeth can be chipped, cracked, or knocked out, crowns can fall out and fillings can be lost. It can happen while you are playing sport, in a trip or fall or by biting down on something hard such as a nut or something sticky such as a toffee.

Pain – dental pain may be caused by an infection in the tooth or gum or by a cavity or decay exposing the sensitive dentine of the tooth. 

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How do I treat a toothache?

If you are suffering with a toothache, rinse your mouth out with warm water. Using interdental cleaning aids, such as floss or interdental brushes, clean between your teeth to remove any trapped food. A cold compress placed on the cheek at the side of the toothache can help to reduce the pain as can over the counter pain killers. 

What do I do if I knock a tooth out?

If a permanent tooth is knocked out by force, with a trip or a fall, it is important that it is replaced into the socket as soon as possible. If the tooth cannot be replaced, keep it within a container of body temperature milk until dental help can be sought. It is important that you get to a dentist as quickly as possible, the best results are seen when a tooth is replaced into the socket within an hour of the accident. 

What do I do if I crack or chip a tooth or lose a filling?

If you crack or chip a tooth, rinse your mouth to remove any remaining loose fragments of teeth to prevent you from swallowing them. It is possible to use sugar free chewing gum to fill the gap caused by a lost filling or chipped tooth as a temporary measure until you can get to an appointment with your dentist.

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What do I do if I have a dental emergency over the festive period?

Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre is open as usual in the week leading up to Christmas. If you have a dental emergency in the days preceding Christmas, please contact the surgery on 01622 682 029 and we will endeavour to book you in for treatment as quickly as possible. Should you have a dental emergency over the festive period please ring the surgery on 01622 682 029 and the answerphone message will give you details on how to access emergency treatment. 

All the team at Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre would like to wish our patients a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We look forward to seeing you all in 2021.

Dentist healthy festive teeth wish list

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What do you think of when you picture Christmas day? Everyone slumped on the sofa, with their waistbands straining, a large tin of brightly coloured wrapped chocolates, a pile of nutshells or a few empty glasses of your favourite tipple? The festive season is full of fun and indulgence but be aware that all these wonderful culinary delights can put a strain on your dental health.

It is very important to be extra vigilant with your oral health over the festive period, if you want to avoid a dental visit in January. Remember your teeth are under attack from the sugars and acids in our foods for up to an hour every time you eat or drink. With regular snacking during the festivities this may mean that your teeth never really get a chance to recover.

So, the team at Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre have come up with five top tips to keep your teeth looking their best into 2021.

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Beware dried fruits

During the drying process, the sugars present in the fruits are concentrated. This means that a holiday favourite such as dates can contain as much as 63g of sugar in every 100g, which can be more than is in some chocolate bars! This is true whether they are eaten individually or in mince pies, Christmas cake or pudding.

Teeth are not tools

Many people end up damaging their teeth as they use them to tear Sellotape, open beer bottles or crack open nuts. Always ensure that you have a pair of scissors, bottle opener and a nut cracker handy, or you may be asking your dentist for a new set of teeth, come January.

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Say cheese

Cheese is great for teeth. It helps to return the mouth to its natural pH balance and reduces the risks of tooth decay. That is why an end of dinner cheeseboard is a great idea.

Do not forget your oral hygiene

It is very easy on busy days to forgo your usual routine and just give your teeth a cursory brush before bed. Teeth take a bit of a hammering, with all the chocolates, sugary foods and drinks and alcohol consumed over the festive period so be sure to take the time to:

  • Brush your teeth for at least 2 minutes, twice a day using a fluoride toothpaste
  • Use interdental cleaning aids, such as floss or interdental brushes daily

Moderation in all things

Moderation is definitely the most important thing to remember. Bear in mind that it is not the quantity of sugary food and drink you have, but how often you have them that will affect your oral health. Try to limit sugary foods and drinks to mealtimes wherever possible and drink drinks through a straw to reduce the time the liquid is in contact with your teeth.

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2020 has been a year like no other, all the team at Maidstone Dental & Implant Centre would like to take this opportunity to thank all our patients for their continued support and wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We look forward to seeing you all in 2021. Should you have any dental problems during the festive period do not hesitate to contact the surgery on 01622 682 029 for details of our out of hours emergency cover.