What’s what in your teeth line-up?

In our blog posts from our Glasgow dental clinic we can cover a multitude of topics – from cosmetic dentistry, dental implants and patient testimonials right through to staff courses and family events.

Today’s blog post is going back to basics on the dental front with some facts about teeth.

We decided to share a brief and simple description of the teeth that humans should have in their mouths…assuming they’ve not undergone any trauma, loss or decay.

We can help improve both aesthetic and function qualities of your smile.

We can help improve both aesthetic and function qualities of your smile.

If they have dental issues then of course our experienced team of dental professionals here in Glasgow can assist. Cosmetic dentistry and restorative dentistry techniques have made huge advanced especially in the last few decades.

The use of dental implants, for instance, can ensure both aesthetic and functional benefits for patients with only a few missing from their existing line-up of teeth – or for patients with few or no teeth and who could perhaps need upper or lower dentures retained by the implants.

Each tooth has a different shape and function – and of course exist to help the process of eating. Most adults should have 32 teeth – while as youngsters we’ll have 20 primary – or baby – teeth that eventually make way for the permanent set.

INCISORS

Firstly lets check out the incisors…These are the four front teeth on the top and on the bottom jaw and are used for cutting and chopping food. Usually first ones to erupt in babies.

CANINES

Then we move onto the canine teeth – the sharp, pointy teeth. We have one on each side of the incisors on your top and bottom jaw, making a total of four. These teeth aid the tearing apart of food.

PREMOLARS

Premolar are situated next to your canine teeth. Premolars are also called bicuspid teeth. There are eight premolars in total – four on the top jaw and four on the bottom. These teeth are bigger and wider than the incisors and canine teeth. Their function is to crush and grind your food.

MOLARS

Then we have the molars. There are eight of these – four on the top and four on the bottom.
Molars are your strongest teeth and these work with your tongue to help you swallow your food, mashing it up until it’s ready to be swallowed safely.

WISDOM TEETH

There are also third molars – known more commonly as your wisdom teeth. These are the last teeth to erupt and won’t often do so until late teens or even your 20s – if at all. If wisdom teeth do come through they can cause issues such as crowding and will often need to be removed.

If you have any questions about this post or would like to find out more about the services and treatments our team can offer at our Glasgow dental clinic then please call our reception team on 0141 339 7579.

Kasia embarks on course in dental implant nursing

Our dental professional team at our Glasgow dental clinic is well qualified to carry out the treatments and services we offer our patients.

But, like every other UK-based dental clinic professional, the emphasis for our Glasgow team is very focused on learning more and gaining further knowledge and qualifications in a range of treatments from teeth whitening to cosmetic dentistry and dental implant work.

Continuing professional development is a key priority at our Glasgow clinic and the staff were are often attending seminars or courses. Sometimes our own clinic will be the venue for courses and seminars with delegates coming from all over the country to attend.

Dentist Jillian Clare is currently enrolled on a smile design course which she attends monthly in London.

Our endodontist Ross Henderson has recently completed his thesis for his Masters in endodontics – more commonly known as root canal therapy.

Dentist Liz Glass recently completed studies and subsequent examination to become a Member of the Faculty of Dental Surgery.

Kasia Zawada who's embarking on dental implant nursing course.

Kasia – embarking on further studies in dental implant nursing

And now our dental implant nurse Kasia Zawada is embarking on a year-long course which will see her attending monthly sessions at London’s King’s College Hospital.

Next July she will complete the course and on passing the exam should receive their certificate in dental implant nursing.

As well as being based at our Glasgow clinic, Kasia works with me at the Edinburgh New Town Dental Care clinic when I’m seeing dental implant patients there.

We look forward to hearing how Kasia progresses on the course and we’ll keep you posted on news of any other courses are Glasgow team embark on in the coming months.

Should you have any questions about the above blog post or would like to find out more about the services and treatment on offer please call our reception team in the first instance on 0141 339 7579.

Dentist Liz’s puppy continues its training: update on Ramsay’s journey

We like to share news on what’s happening on the clinical side of our work here at our Glasgow dental clinic.

We also like to let you know of any new advances in treatments such as dental implant work and cosmetic dentistry.

Dentist Liz Glass with pup Ramsay

Flashback – Dentist Liz with puppy Ramsay shortly before he left Glasgow for training

But we also enjoy giving you an insight into the life our experienced and committed team members share when they’re away from the Glasgow clinic…and that can range in topics from family life, sporting interests and big life milestones to hobbies and courses.

ASSISTANCE DOGS

Earlier this year we shared news about our dentist colleague Liz Glass and how her family’s pet labrador Twiggy had given birth to some pups.

One of the male pups – called Ramsay – was donated by Liz and her family to the excellent charity called Canine Partners which trains puppies to become assistance dogs for people with disabilities. These dogs can make a huge difference to those people who are assigned their canine partner.

Liz has just shared with us an update on how Ramsay is progressing since he headed off from her home in Glasgow for his new ‘working life’.

Liz's pup Ramsay after leaving Glasgow to train with Canine Partners charity

Liz’s pup Ramsay after leaving Glasgow to train with Canine Partners charity

According to the charity team, young Ramsay is making good progress, settling into training classes and is learning to do as he is asked promptly rather than in his own time!

SOUND IN TRAFFIC

The update report added: “With encouragement he settles well both at home and in class when the humans are having coffee.

“He seems sound in traffic and his lead walking is improving. He loads into the car well and travels with no problems.

“At first he was tending to bark at other dogs but now it is the occasional whine rather than a bark which is good. Hopefully the whining will stop as he matures.”

The charity also provided Liz with some new photos of Ramsay…and there’s certainly a big difference in him since the last time he appeared in our blog!

We look forward to further updates on Ramsay’s progress.

Should you have any questions about this blog or would like to find out more about the treatments and services on offer at our Glasgow dental clinic then please contact our receptionists on 0141 339 7579.

Big brother’s watching you – via your teeth…

There are many reasons you might want to visit the dentist…

Perhaps you would come to our Glasgow dental clinic for a routine check-up, a smile makeover consultation, teeth whitening or even dental implants

The list of reasons is extensive.

But coming to see the dentist and having a tooth sensor fitted?

That’s the latest innovation revealed in the media this week with an article focusing on work that’s been carried out in the National Taiwan University.

The boffins there have developed a prototype of a tooth sensor that can fit onto dentures or braces and has been created by medics to allow them to track whether a person is following the health advice given to them.

SMALL MOTION SENSOR

This tiny piece of electronic gadgetry apparently can also be embedded into a tooth and holds a small motion sensor called an accelerometer.

According to the reports the theory is that the jaw moves in different ways during certain activities such as chewing, eating, smoking or drinking.

Said sensor then amasses this information on the smallest of circuit boards and then transmits the data collected to a smartphone. The patient’s doctor can then download the vital data and determine whether the patient has been following guidelines – perhaps sticking to a diet or has given up smoking.

Our team here at the Glasgow dental clinic enjoy reading the reports about the latest advances in the world of dentistry and teeth-related matters. This topic was certainly one that created a bit of interest in the staff room.

Should you have any questions about this post or would like to find out more about the treatments and services – not the application of the above mentioned tooth sensor I might add – we do offer then please contact our reception team on 0141 339 7579.

Cuppas combat cavities? New research reports on tea benefits

From time to time the humble cuppa is credited with assisting a myriad health issues.

Tea – in various guises of green, mint and the normal brew – has been credited in medical and media reports to help cases of Parkinson’s Disease, high blood pressure and indigestion as well as to reduce certain cancer risks.

Now the latest reports claim that at least three cups a day can help keep your teeth in good condition and cut the risk of decay.

photo showing a simple cuppa

The humble cuppa…at centre of new research

Black tea – according to the report in the Daily Mail at the weekend – can help to combat two particular types of bacteria – Streptococcus mutans and Lactobacillus – associated with tooth decay and gum disease.

FIGHT DECAY

Dr Carrie Ruxton who has written about her findings in the British Nutrition Foundation’s “Nutrition Bulletin” headed up this new study and believes that the most effective tea dose was 3-4 cups per day.

The research scientists reported that black tea continued to fight decay, even when some sugar had been added to it.

Green tea – long associated with having health benefits – also appeared to have a similar effect – but in addition helped prevent cases of bad breath by effectively neutralising the sulphur compounds that contribute to the condition.

Dr Ruxton believes that there is good evidence that tea drinking protects against tooth loss and is quoted as saying: “Evidence specific to black tea suggests that three to four cups a day could help to reduce levels of bacteria in the mouth,
‘I’m sure this news is set to be welcomed by dentists and hygienists alike as as they continue to educate the nation on the need for greater oral care.’

Tea contains antioxidant ingredients called flavonoids and catechins, tannin-type substances, that have an anti microbial effect.

The new report also looks at how green tea could help weight loss, increases energy expenditure and burning up more body fat.

REDUCING RISK OF DENTAL CARIES

As you can imagine the Tea Advisory Panel, set up by the industry, was positive in its welcome for this latest research.

Their spokesman Dr Tim Bond was quoted in reports saying: “A relatively little known benefit of tea until recently has been its potential for reducing the risk of dental caries.

‘This benefit is thought to be due to a reduction in inflammation in the oral cavity and prevention of the adhesion and growth of bacteria linked to periodontal disease.”

Our dental hygiene team here at our Glasgow dental clinic can provide you with information about foods and drinks that may cause some additional risk of dental decay. We can also give advice on maintaining good dental hygiene which in turn can help minimise the incidence of bad breath.

If you have any questions about this post or would like to find out more information about the dental services and treatments we can offer patients please call our Glasgow dental clinic reception team on 0141 339 7579.

Image courtesy of Kritsana/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

What makes the perfect dental nurse? Competence, confidence and cooperation

Here at our Glasgow dental clinic we have a team of three dental nurses – Kasia, Louise, Pamela and our newest addition June.

Between them they support the dentists based at the surgeries in our clinic.

People often ask me what makes a good clinic nurse?

I can sum it up in just three words – “competence, confidence and co-operation”.

Each of our Glasgow-based team has oodles of all three – and their understanding of the task they face during each appointment is so spot on.

Dental nursing can be treated either as a job or a vocation. Only those indivuduals with a true desire to help others regardless of the effort it takes have a vocational instinct.

I believe the dental nurses we employ do share that desire and and have a superb grasp of the role. They also appreciate the importance and benefits of strong team work in the clinic.

COMFORT BLANKET

I recall some significant feedback from a patient undergoing dental implant work at the Glasgow clinic.

The patient described Kasia’s involvement “like being a comfort blanket” during the treatment.

I work closely with Kasia, especially when we are looking after patients who have opted to undergo dental implant treatment at the clinic – here in Glasgow and also at the New Town Dental Care clinic in Edinburgh where I see dental implant patients.

Kasia also helps to train other implant nurses.

DEVELOPING EXPERTISE

She has held a role with the implant supply company AstraTech, conducting a series of Train the Trainers Nurse Courses, a role for which she underwent a rigorous interview session. She travelled all over the UK to carry out these training sessions.

These training sessions allow Kasia to share the expert knowledge she gained both in her studies and working alongside our team of experienced dental care professionals.

In her role as a trainer she is able to work closely with many other dental nurses from all over the UK.

These are usually nurses who have expressed an interest in developing their expertise into the world of implant surgery or whose dentist employers are expanding their skills in that field and so need the assistance of an implant nurse.

Should you have any questions about this blog post or wish to find out more about our treatments and services please contact our reception on 0141 339 7579.

A Beatle “reborn” from an old molar? Imagine…

We enjoy reading some of the more unusual media stories about the dental world and one offering that’s been doing the rounds in print and online certainly fits that bill.

Dentist Michael Zuk, based in Red Deer in Canada, who bought John Lennon’s discoloured molar for £19,500 at a 2011 auction, reckons scientists can potentially extract the singer-songwriter’s DNA and one day could clone a new Lennon!

To quote one of his songs – “imagine”!

DISCOLOURED MOLAR

Lennon gave the tooth to his housekeeper after the music genius had it pulled out in the ’60s, and dentist Michael bought it from her son more than 30 years after the Beatle was shot dead at his US apartment block in 1980.

Michael has been quoted as saying:

“Many Beatles fans remember where they were when they heard John Lennon was shot.

“I hope they also live to hear the day he was given another chance.”

We note that in many of the stories the auction house said at the time of the sale that DNA could not be obtained.

But with new advances in genetic/DNA research, Michael believes that Lennon’s DNA can be harvested and, in time, converted from tissue cells into stem cells, and eventually into a reborn Beatle.

He’s further quoted: “To say I had a small part in bringing back one of rock’s greatest stars would be mind-blowing,”

MOUTH CANCER AWARENESS

Until that day dawns there is a more serious and positive side to this venture. Michael is advertising other dental endeavours: pendants and a piece of sculpture made from Lennon’s “tooth dust”, a picture book of celebrities’ teeth, the parody song “Love Me Tooth”, and other initiatives to promote awareness of mouth cancer.

Up until we read the lines about the worthwhile cause of mouth cancer awareness – something that our own Glasgow dental clinic is doing this year too – we might have been forgiven for checking our calendars to see if April 1 had arrived early…

Should you have any questions about this blog post or would like to find out more about the services and treatments our Glasgow dental clinic can offer patients please call us on 0141 339 7579. We’ll be happy to assist with your enquiry.

What a difference a dental implant can make…

Dental implant surgery is a particular focus for my professional work.

The benefits achievable with dental implants can be key to effective cosmetic dentistry and restorative dentistry work – all playing part of aesthetic and functional improvements (also more commonly known as a ‘smile makeover’)…

There can be a number of reasons why a dental implant can be the effective solution for a patient.

artwork shown in our Glasgow clinic where dental implants are offered

Implants can make significant difference in function and appearance.

I recall looking after one male patient from our Glasgow dental clinic who had suffered a sports injury – he’d been a footballer and in a clash had instantly knocked out his two front teeth. I was able to see him at short notice and assess the damage caused in the accident.

Like anyone the loss of these teeth and the impact on his smile were fairly traumatic factors but it was evident to me on examination that we could achieve a long-lasting and effective solution for the patient by using dental implants.

The treatment took about 15 months in total but during the patient journey we kept him fully informed with what was happening and what needed to happen to achieve the end result.

Much of that time is taken up in the simple healing process post surgery and to allow the titanium implant to become properly secured in the patient’s mouth.

The patient’s own words to us in a testimonial summed up the outcome following completion of his treatment plan.

He kindly wrote: “The shape and shade of each new tooth has exceeded my expectations and the overall effect has restored my confidence.”

I carry out dental implant work both at my Glasgow clinic and also at the New Town Dental Care clinic in Edinburgh.

Should you wish to find out more information about how dental implant surgery could help you please contact us on 0141 339 7579. Our reception team here at Glasgow would be happy to help with your enquiry.

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.

Mouth cancer awareness campaign: knowing the risk factors

Throughout 2013 our Glasgow dental clinic has been running a mouth cancer awareness campaign – promoting the risk factors and sharing expert knowledge about the condition.

We’ve worked with the team from the Ben Walton Trust which is a charitable organisation set up following the death of a young Scottish student – Ben Walton – after contracting mouth cancer.

In this post we’re sharing information about the risk factors related to mouth cancer. The information comes from the team at the British Dental Health Foundation, a UK-wide charity which exists to promote positive messages about dental health and share information about dental/oral issues.

Here’s what the Foundation has to say about the risk factors related to mouth cancer.

Smoking

Around a fifth of the UK’s population smoke and the habit is still considered the leading cause of mouth cancer. According to the World Health Organisation, up to half of current smokers will eventually die of a tobacco-related disease, including mouth cancer. Smoking helps to transforms saliva into a deadly cocktail that damages cells in the mouth and can turn them cancerous.

Alcohol

Drinking to excess can increase mouth cancer risks by four times. As alcohol aids the absorption of tobacco into the mouth, those who smoke and drink to excess are up to 30 times more likely to develop the disease.

Poor diet

Around a third of cases are thought to be linked to an unhealthy diet. It is recommended that people eat a healthy, balanced diet including five portions of fruit and vegetables each day. Increasing evidence also suggests that Omega 3, found in foods such as eggs and fish can help lower risks, as can foods high in fibre such as nuts, seeds, whole-wheat pasta and brown rice.

Chewing or Smokeless tobacco

Smokeless tobacco is normally defined as any tobacco product that is placed in the mouth or nose and not burned. Although some people believe this type of tobacco is safer than smoking, the reality is that it is much more dangerous. The types of smokeless tobacco products most used in the UK often contain a mix of ingredients including slaked lime, areca nut and spices, flavourings and sweeteners. The terminology for smokeless tobacco varies, but the main types used in the UK include:

Gutka, Khaini, Pan Masala (betel quid), Shammah and Maras powder (these are sucked or chewed);
Zarda, Qiwam, or Mawa (chewed);
Lal dantmanjan, Gadakhu, Gul, Mishri, or Creamy Snuff (dental products which are used as toothpaste or rubbed on gums);
Nass (can be used nasally, sucked or chewed).

Smokeless tobacco is used particularly by South Asian Communities, especially women. The incidence of mouth cancer is significantly greater among South Asian women. Other parts of South Asian communities are also more at risk from the effects of smokeless tobacco including: people of Bangladeshi origin; those in older age groups; and people from lower socioeconomic groups.

Human Papilloma Virus (HPV)

The Human Papilloma Virus, transmitted via oral sex, is increasingly being linked to mouth cancer. Younger people are particularly at risk. A recent study in the USA has connected over 20,000 mouth cancer cases to HPV in the last five years. Experts suggest it may rival tobacco and alcohol as a key risk factor within 10 years, although some research indicates that people with mouth cancer caused by HPV may have a greater chance of survival. People with multiple sexual partners are more at risk.

Who is at risk?

Mouth cancer incidence has always been strongly related to age. In the UK, just under half (44 per cent) of all mouth cancer cases were diagnosed in people aged 65 and over, with more than a quarter (25 per cent) diagnosed in the under 55s. Although the gap has significantly diminished over time, men are still twice more likely to develop mouth cancer than women, although for men, age-specific incidence rates peak at ages 60-69, whereas for women it peaks in the over-80s.

Given the most well established risk factors for the major types of oral cancer are excessive alcohol consumption and smoking, it is not surprising that mouth cancer incidence is strongly associated with deprivation. The most recent England-wide data shows incidence rates for head and neck cancer are more than double (130 per cent) for men living in more deprived areas compared with the least deprived, and more than 74 per cent higher for women. Similar results have also been published for Northern Ireland and Wales while Scotland shows an even larger deprivation gap.

The rising incidence and mortality rates in young and middle-aged adults are undeniable. A series of studies in southern England looking at risk factors for patients under 45 years concluded that most young patients are exposed to the traditional risk factors of tobacco smoking and alcohol. However, the relatively short duration of exposure to these known risk factors suggests that other causes may also be involved. There was also a small sub-group of patients who had little, if any, exposure to the major risk factors.

Our clinic’s message

Should you have any concerns about any mouth problems then please contact your doctor or dentist as soon as possible. Our Glasgow dental team is able to carry out an examination to ascertain if you are showing any symptoms that need further investigation.

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