FAQs & Advice

General Practice
What are your surgery hours?
We are open weekdays 8.30am to 5.30pm. On a Thursday we are open til 7.30pm by appointment only. The practice is also open on Saturdays from 9am to 1.30 pm by appointment only.
 
How do I book an appointment?
Simply telephone us on 0208 993 2601 or call in to see us. Alternatively, you can request an appointment online by using the form opposite.
 
Are you accepting new patients?
We are always happy to accept new patients. We also endeavour to book in any emergency appointments on the day that you call. A vast amount of patients are referred to us by existing patients. If you have been referred please let us know so we can thank them.
 
Can I be seen as an NHS patient?
We do offer an NHS service aswell as a non NHS.
 
Is there ways I can spread my payment?
We offer a 0% finance agreement to help you spread the cost of any large treatment plans,
view our finance options here

What should I do in an emergency?
If the practice is open, we will ensure that we can fit you in on the day. If it is out of hours, there will be a message on our answer machine telling you who to contact.
 
Is there parking?
There is currently public parking outside the practice. There is ample parking on the roads around the practice from 11am – 3pm (please check signs) as well as pay and display parking. Please allow time to park before your appointment.
 
Is there disabled access?
The practice has wide and easy access and we are also able to offer ground floor treatment rooms. Please let us know prior to your appointment if there is anything that we can do to assist in the smooth running of your appointment.
 
General Dentistry

Teeth

How often should I visit my dentist?
After your initial check up your dentist will advise you on how frequently you need to visit the surgery according to your needs. People at a greater risk to oral diseases may need to visit more regularly. Tobacco and alcohol use, diabetes, pregnancy, periodontal and gum disease, poor oral hygiene and certain medical conditions are some of the many factors that your dentist takes into consideration when deciding how often you need your dental cleaning and check-up.
 
What is decay?
Decay is the destruction of tooth structure. Decay occurs when plaque, the sticky substance that forms on teeth, combines with the sugars and / or starches of the foods that we eat. This combination produces acids that attack tooth enamel. The best way to prevent tooth decay is by brushing twice a day and flossing daily. To prevent decay you should eat healthy foods and avoid snacks an drinks that are high in sugar.
 
What is sensitivity?
Tooth sensitivity is when you experience short sharp pain or discomfort to your teeth from sugary foods, cold air, hot, cold drinks and food or even when brushing or flossing. Several factors can contribute to tooth sensitivity including cavities, gum disease, a fractured tooth or worn enamel.

What does an abcess/swelling mean?
An abscess of the tooth is an infection. An abscess can include pus and swelling of the soft gum tissues surrounding the tooth. An abscess can develop from tooth decay or tooth trauma, such as a broken tooth. If there is an opening in the enamel of a tooth, such as a cavity, bacteria can get in and infect the nerve of the tooth and cause an abscess. Once an abscess happens, the infection could spread throughout the mouth and body. If you suspect that you have an abscessed tooth, you should see your dentist right away.
 
What is a cavity?
A cavity is a hole in the tooth that is caused by decay. Decay occurs when plaque, the sticky substance that forms on teeth, combines with the sugary foods and drinks that we consume. This combination produces acids that attack tooth enamel. The best way to prevent tooth decay is brushing twice a day, with a fluoridated toothpaste and flossing daily and going to your regular dental check ups. Eating healthy foods and avoiding snacks and drinks that are high in sugar are also ways to prevent decay.
 
Why is fluoride good for my teeth?
Fluoride is a mineral that helps prevent tooth decay. Studies show that fluoride reduces cavities in people of all ages and is effective and safe when used correctly. Fluoride is in most toothpastes, however if your dentist feels it is necessary, it can be administered to the teeth in different ways in the surgery.
 
What is root canal?
A root canal is usually performed when the tooth cannot be filled or restored any other way because the decay has reached the nerve of the tooth or the tooth has become infected. Today, with modern technology and better anaesthetics, root canal treatments are no more painful than having a filling.

Most root canals can be performed in two to three visits. It is important to remember that after a root canal treatment you will need to make a follow up appointment with your dentist to have the tooth permanently restored. After the pulp of the tooth has been removed, the tooth can become very dry and brittle. Having a permanent restoration placed will help protect your tooth from fracturing.

Are there ways of restoring gaps?
If you have a gap or multiple gaps, your dentist will discuss with you your options on restoring these gaps. Your options may include dentures, bridges, implants. Benefits of each options according to your individual needs will be discussed with you at your appointment.
 
Gums and Oral Hygiene

What is gum disease?
Periodontal disease (gum disease) is inflammation of the tissues, which support the teeth and attach them to the jaw. If inflammation only involves the soft gum tissues it is called gingivitis. If however it starts to involve the bone of the jaw it is called periodontitis.

What casues bad breath?
Persistent bad breath also known as halitosis is a common problem, and the following dental issues could be contributing to it. These conditions could be one or more of the following:
  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Gum disease
  • Cavities
  • Oral cancer
  • Dry Mouth (xerostomia)
If bad breath is the cause of a dental issue, mouthwash can be used but will only mask the odour and not cure it. If you suffer from chronic bad breath, you should visit your dentist first, to rule out any dental problems. Some ways to prevent bad breath are, brushing twice a day, flossing daily, regular dental check ups, using a mouth rinse, brushing your tongue, avoiding tobacco and drinking water.

Shoud I use a manual or electric toothbrush?
Both forms of tooth brushes are effective if used correctly. Below are some advantages and disadvantages of both to help you decide which works better for you.

Manual Toothbrush:
Advantages:
  • Inexpensive
  • Most have an easy grip handle
  • Some come with a tongue scraper
  • Easy to travel with
Disadvantages
  • No built in timer to tell you when two minutes are up
  • Can be difficult for some people to hold onto firmly
Electric Toothbrushes:
Advantages
  • The larger ergonomic handles can be beneficial for arthritis patients or the elderly
  • Some have built in timers that let you know when you have brushed for a full two minutes
  • Electric toothbrushes provide a far more thorough cleaning
  • Some electric toothbrushes dispense toothpaste
Disadvantages
  • Some electric toothbrushes can be quite expensive
  • Most electric toothbrushes require charging or battery replacement
  • The replacement heads can be quite expensive
How often should I change my toothbrush?
Adults and children should change their toothbrush every 3 months because they become worn out and are not as effective as they once were. Exceptions to this would be if you were using an electric toothbrush, and the manufacturer states otherwise. Some electric rechargeable toothbrushes have very good brush heads that only need to be changed every 6 months. If you have gum disease, you should change your toothbrush every 4 – 6 weeks because bacteria can harbour in the bristles.

Does whitening toothpaste really work?
Whitening toothpastes, like all other toothpastes, contain carbamide peroxide to remove surface stains. Whitening toothpastes may have additional polishing agents and special chemicals that are more effective against stains than regular toothpastes. While whitening toothpastes can make your teeth appear a little lighter, by getting rid of superficial stains, but they do not actually bleach your teeth. Whitening toothpastes are ideal for people who smoke, drink coffee and tea and eat certain foods that can stain your teeth.

Whitening toothpastes are also good to use after you have undergone a teeth whitening procedure to keep surface stains from building up on your teeth. If you decide to use a whitening toothpaste, be sure that it contains fluoride for extra protection against tooth decay.
 
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