What’s in a name? The story behind our Glasgow dental clinic

Exterior of the Philip Friel Advanced Dentistry Clinic which offers bespoke general dentistry, cosmetic dentistry and life enhancing dental implants

Exterior shot of our clinic – with our name displayed.

We’re often asked about our Glasgow dental clinic’s name – Philip Friel Advanced Dentistry at Hyndland Dental Clinic – and why we selected that name to be proudly displayed on our premises here in the West End of Glasgow.

As the founder of the clinic I was more than happy to have my name ‘above the door’ but I also wanted a clinic title that sums up exactly what we offer in terms of treatments and services for our patients.

The title’s key word is “advanced” which, in our view, covers a myriad aspects of our patient care package…

Here are just three advanced aspects that we feel sum up exactly what we’re about –

Advanced care – this is key to everything we do at the clinic. From the moment our reception team receive your initial call or welcome you for the first visit patient care is our number one priority. Our dental care professionals are well qualified and experienced in their fields to deliver the right treatment plans for each patient, whether it’s for bespoke general dentistry, maintenance and hygiene services to more complex services such as cosmetic dentistry, restorative dentistry, specialist orthodontic work or dental implant surgery which is one of our Glasgow clinic’s particular focuses.

Advanced technology – when we were setting up our clinic we scoured the world for the best in cutting-edge equipment to ensure that with our professional skills we were able to offer the patients 21st century advanced treatment. We continue to upgrade/renew our equipment and technology and are constantly researching the latest advances in the dental care world.

Advanced dentistry – we work hard every day to ensure our ‘patient journey’ is right. We consider that our standards of care/treatment are such that we believe our patients are assured of the very best at all times. We consider that our ‘package’ of care/treatment along with our high levels of professionalism, supported by our clinic’s technology and equipment more than earns the label ‘advanced dentistry’.

We are also happy that the name we selected for our Glasgow clinic – Philip Friel Advanced Dentistry at Hyndland Dental Clinic – was approved by the General Dental Council before we went ahead with the official naming back in 2010.

Summing up we believe we offer ‘dentistry with a difference’ and are happy to discuss your dental care/needs.

Should you have any questions about this blog post or would like to discover more about the treatments/services we can offer our patients at our Glasgow clinic then please get in touch with us on 0141 339 7579 or via the contact section of the website.

Guest blog: Newest team member Imran shares his view on specialist orthodontics

We’re delighted to welcome our newest team member specialist orthodontist Imran Shafi to our Glasgow dental clinic. Imran has penned our August Guest Blog…

“Often we are asked what is the difference between a specialist orthodontist and a dentist that does orthodontics?

Orthodontics is a specialist branch of dentistry that is concerned with the development and management of irregularities and abnormalities in the teeth and jaws.

The field of orthodontics largely focuses on treatments such as tooth straightening using orthodontic braces or aligners, as well as problems pertaining to the jaw. The aim of orthodontics is to produce a healthy, functioning bite, creating higher resistance to disease processes and improving your personal appearance. Patients find that orthodontic treatment contributes to both their mental and physical wellbeing.

specialist orthodontist Imran Shafi joins our team at Glasgow dental clinic

Specialist orthodontist Imran Shafi

All specialist orthodontists in the UK have undertaken several years of further training after completing their dental degree. Hence they have a strong and broad foundation in general and hospital dentistry. The specialist training programmes are competitively entered and concurrently the orthodontist will have undertaken postgraduate university research to Masters or Doctorate level.

Philip Friel Advanced Dentistry’s orthodontists – I’ve joined Andrew McGregor who’s also based here – are registered on the General Dental Council as specialists.

BEST OPTIONS AND TREATMENTS

Therefore orthodontists have the full training to advise the best options and treatments for their patients. This ranges from simple and swift to complex and gold standard complete correction. As specialists, they know what’s appropriate for you, with current, evidence based knowledge and techniques.

Some general dentists have completed shorter and much less detailed courses in orthodontics and have an interest in the subject. They would have varying levels of expertise and ability in orthodontics.

The decision as to whether to have treatment with a specialist orthodontist or non-specialist is ultimately up to the individual. Cost wise, dentists and orthodontists generally charge the same amount for similar orthodontic treatment. As a patient you get the added benefit of being treated by a specialist when you see a qualified orthodontist.

INTEGRATED TREATMENTS OF THE HIGHEST STANDARD

At Philip Friel Advanced Dentistry we all work closely together with our professional colleagues to provide our patients integrated treatments of the highest standard. This can involve many disciplines from: root treatment; sedation; cosmetic dentistry and dental implants and all supported by our hygienists and dental nurses.

The specialist orthodontists are able to liaise with the team intricately at every stage, which is especially important when our patients are being transferred to or from our orthodontic care. It is imperative that this is undertaken seamlessly and easily for our patients to maintain our practice ethos of advanced dentistry.”

If you have any questions about Imran’s guest post or would like to learn more about the treatments and services we offer at our Glasgow dental clinic then please contact us via this website of by telephoning our reception team on 0141 339 7579.

Spotting the phobic patients – and caring for them at our Glasgow dental clinic.

Caring for phobic patients is something that we take seriously here at our Glasgow dental clinic.

Our dental hygiene team of Jen and Viv recently penned an article about the signs to spot in a phobic patient and how that patient is cared for from our team’s perspective.

It will give you an insight into the whole topic of dental phobia – and more importantly the things that can be done to help someone who is afraid of coming to the clinic.

Here are their words…

Now we’re all used to hearing the words “I hate coming to see the dentist”, ” I hate this, my last hygienist was worse than the dentist” or even ” I’d rather have a baby”!

While the latter may be a little extreme it does, at least, give a small indication that this particular patient is not overjoyed at the prospect of time in the dental surgery.

Our hygienist team - Jen and Viv

Our hygienist team – Jen and Viv

So what about this one – “I’ve got phobia of the dentist”.

Paramedics are taught that in emergency situations it will usually be the quiet ones who need most help and attention – different situation but same theory should be applied.

While more vocal patients give us the chance to quickly tailor our approach so that during their time with us we can accommodate for and hopefully allay their fears, it is the silent type that can be far more difficult to spot and it is often these patients who are truly phobic.

So how do we know if the patient doesn’t say? We’re not mind readers after all. Well, give yourself some credit here – you’re probably far better at reading a person in a short space of time than even you realise.

From the first call of their name in the waiting room when they look at you like a deer caught in headlights – but only for a split second – before regaining their composure, through to all the little things when actually in the chair such as pallor, sweating, tightly clasped hands, finger wringing, skin pulling (usually of the hands) and breath holding.

I once saw a patient who held her breath for as long as she possibly could during treatment and continued to do so even after a long, gentle discussion on how this was not the most sensible course of action as breathing really is quite important! The event that changed her behaviour was when she almost fainted through lack of O2. She now carries on – and breathes – normally!

As these are only a small example of some of the many, many signs that all is not quite right with someone we all must remember to pay a huge amount of attention to all aspects of our patients behaviour, then something out of the ordinary will be easy to spot.

So, how do we treat these patients effectively?

Well, if they fall into the first camp then they can be relatively easy to treat; the most important thing can be to calm them down and make them feel at ease, so a good conversation about something other than dentistry is a good distraction. We try to keep our own voice steady, calm and even and patients will subconsciously follow suit.

We empathise and try to find out what it is exactly that they really don’t like and cater for this…

Is it the ultrasonic scaler? Hand scale. Drilling noises? We provide headphones or suggest to the patient to bring in their own music. It may take a little more effort and imagination sometimes but is it not worth it for happy, relaxed patients who want to tell the world what an amazing dental practice they go to?

One of the things consistently mentioned as a dreaded part of any trip to the dentist is ‘THE NEEDLE!’ even people with tattoos complain about it! We must explain to the patient that although they have the impression that this nasty, sharp needle is the sore bit, this really isn’t the case – the worst part is more likely to be pain felt when the anaestheitc liquid is inserted into the soft tissues.

One piece of equipment trying to combat this is the wonderfully named The Wand from DPS (Dental Practice Systems). This is a pen-like syringe, synced to a specific computer programme, which automatically delivers the anaesthetic at a slow, constant rate therefore reducing any pain felt.

Admittedly this sounds like a pretty cool gadget to impress your patients with (and we all know that we love our gadgets…) and it probably works very well, but is it neccesary?

SEDATION

How about just using lots of topical gel and actually leaving it on long enough to be effective (10-30 seconds) gently heating the anaesthetic cartridges, which has been shown to reduce the patients awareness of delivery and most importantly…..OUR DENTISTS WILL TAKE THEIR TIME!

So how about the genuinely phobic patients? In our view and experience most can be treated successfully using many of the same techniques used with nervous patients but may require more time spent at each visit or spreading out appointments, whatever is going to work better for the patient. We believe it is important to know your limitations though. Certain patients may only manage to get through treatment with the help of sedation, whether oral or I.V no matter what you try first, whereas some may even have to call on outside help such as hypnosis or acupuncture.

So we don’t rule out anything that may help our patients and we certainly don’t underestimate the power of fear!

If you have any questions arising from this post then please contact our team on 0141 339 7579.

The importance of a check-up: it’s not just your smile to think about…

As we’ve mentioned in previous blogs, it’s currently the 2013 National Smile Month and the message coming out from the organisers underlines the importance of a regular check-up to ensure your dental health and function are in tip top condition.

How often do you attend the dentist for a check-up?

The British Dental Health Foundation which runs National Smile month emphasises the links between bad oral health and many other health issues.

The campaign organisers write…

“Poor oral health doesn’t just cause problems inside the mouth. A smile is hugely important to our personalities, self-confidence, relationships and success.

GENERAL HEALTH AT RISK TOO

“General health is also at risk too as studies continue to associate poor oral health to serious health problems such as diabetes, heart disease, strokes, pneumonia, premature babies and other major conditions. With a good oral health routine, most of these conditions are preventable.”

Aside from committing the time and intention to visit your dentist there can be other reasons such as dental phobia that will lead to someone putting off that important check-up appointment.

According to the National Smile Month 2013 website, 15 per cent of adults who have been to a dentist suffer from extreme dental anxiety.

The site also reveals how visiting the dentist is ranked number one (22%) for making people nervous, closely followed by heights (19%). Nearly 10 times as many people (22%) are nervous of visiting their dentists, compared to their doctor (2%).

Our team here at our Glasgow dental clinic is experienced in supporting people who suffer from varying degrees of dental phobia. From the moment a patient arrives at our reception, the team will be on hand to extend a warm welcome and give any advice and support you require.

We also have a team focused on helping those phobic patients undergoing treatment via sedation techniques. Our hygienist team is also well experienced in caring from any phobic patients attending the clinic.

Should you have any questions about the points raised in this blog post, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team here by phoning 0141 339 7579. We look forward to hearing from you.

New study into dental phobic patients by University of Hong Kong: YouTube videos used for research.

Our team here works hard at helping phobic patients and we can use sedation techniques to help patients overcome their fears in attending for appointments.

It’s an important service we offer patients and our entire team is used to looking after those patients who have difficulties in feeling relaxed or confident about the dental clinic environment.
Our colleague Jamie Maguire has a particular focus on patients sedation and you can read more about our sedation treatments by clicking here.

Jamie Maguire has a focus on sedation for patients at Philip Friel Advanced Dentistry in Glasgow.

Jamie Maguire – has a particular focus on sedation for phobic patients.

According to DentalNews.co.uk a new study at the University of Hong Kong which used YouTube as a platform has revealed multiple manifestations and impacts of dental fear and anxiety, including immediate physical reactions (eg, crying, screaming, and shivering), psychological responses (eg, worry, upset, panic, helplessness, insecurity, resentment, and hatred), and uncooperativeness in dental treatment.

Testimonials from children, adolescents, and their parents suggested diverse origins of dental anxiety, namely personal experience (eg, irregular dental visits and influence of parents or peers), dentists and dental auxiliaries (eg, bad manner, lack of clinical skills, and improper work ethic), dental settings (eg, dental chair and sounds), and dental procedures (eg, injections, pain, discomfort, and aesthetic concerns).

The selected YouTube videos were transcribed verbatim. Non-verbal expressions such as facial expressions and body postures were also described.

A panel of three members consisting of a paediatric dentist, a behavioural scientist/public health practitioner, and a layperson with no dental background, read through the transcripts and watched each video carefully to ensure that the context was precisely understood and documented.

The research concludes that dental anxiety is better prevented than treated, through coordinated efforts of dentists, dental auxiliaries, pediatric patients, and their parents.

You can read more details about this study by clicking here.

Sedation: key facts about a solution for patients attending the clinic.

There have been some reports in the media recently regarding the greater numbers of people receiving dental care with various sedation techniques in Scotland.

Now you may think that this is due to more and more people feeling nervous and anxious of receiving dental treatment, but I am not too sure this is the case.

I think more and more people are aware of the benefits of receiving dental care, and this includes the various sedation techniques such as “twilight sleep”.

In today’s world, people are aware of the importance of having a nice smile in their working and personal lives. Many of us are no longer willing to compromise on our appearance or our ability to chew and enjoy food in comfort, and people who are anxious of dental care are no different.

Some people may be nervous about undergoing dental care; this is perfectly normal. Often these anxieties can be dispelled with a caring attitude and good communication from your dentist, as well as gentle use of effective numbing techniques.

Websites for dental anxiety support, e.g www.dentalfearcentral.org, are wonderful resources where anxious patients can receive support from fellow patients and caring dentists, helping them on their journey to achieve optimal dental health.

Modern dental conscious sedation is a technique whereby different drugs are used to relax and sedate the anxious or phobic patient, and is carried out by dentists who have undergone additional postgraduate supervision and training.

It is an invaluable technique used to help those people whose anxiety may be such that a form of sedation is required to allow them to achieve their dental goals. Conscious sedation is also preferred to a general anaesthetic for potentially difficult surgical procedures e.g. removal of lower wisdom teeth or multiple implant placements; due to the exceptional safety record of conscious sedation, a more pleasant experience, and significantly lower costs compared with general anaesthesia.

Prospective candidates for conscious sedation are first assessed by the sedating dentist, to ensure that sedation is appropriate.

This will involve taking a detailed medical history, as well as assessing the patient’s medical fitness. If it is deemed that conscious sedation is appropriate, a full explanation of the procedure is provided, and an appointment arranged for treatment. On the day of the procedure, the patient will arrive with an escort who will accompany them home and look after them for the rest of the day.

The sedation drug will make the patient relaxed and a little drowsy, and for many, they will have no memory of the treatment.

After a short rest in the clinic to ensure that it is safe for the patient to go home with their escort, the patient is discharged, a step further along their road to optimal dental health and the smile that they have dreamed about.

The team here at our Glasgow dental clinic can offer patients advice and information on sedation techniques as well as in-clinic sedation. Please feel free to contact us via the website or by telephoning the team on 0141 339 7579.