Bad breath is a very common problem and there are many different causes. Persistent bad breath is usually caused by the smelly gases released by the bacteria that coat your teeth and gums.
However, strong foods like garlic and onions can add to the problem. Smoking is also one of the main causes of bad breath, along with certain illnesses such as nasal and stomach conditions.
Bits of food that get caught between the teeth and on the tongue will rot and can sometimes cause an unpleasant smell. So correct and regular brushing is very important to keep your breath smelling fresh.
The bacteria on our teeth and gums (plaque) also cause gum disease and dental decay. If you see your dentist regularly this will not only help prevent bad breath but will also let the dentist look for and treat these problems.
Screening for gum disease forms an integral part of your routine examination.
Gum disease describes swelling, soreness or infection of the tissues supporting the teeth. There are two main forms of gum disease: gingivitis and periodontal disease.
Gingivitis means inflammation of the gums. This is when the gums around the teeth become very red and swollen. Often the swollen gums bleed when they are brushed during cleaning.
Long-standing gingivitis can turn into periodontal disease. There are a number of types of periodontal disease and they all affect the tissues supporting the teeth. As the disease gets worse the bone anchoring the teeth in the jaw is lost, making the teeth loose. If this is not treated, the teeth may eventually fall out.
All gum diseases are caused by plaque. Plaque is a film of bacteria which forms on the surface of the teeth and gums every day. Many of the bacteria in plaque are completely harmless, but there are some that have been shown to be the main cause of gum disease. To prevent and treat gum disease, you need to make sure you remove all the plaque from your teeth every day. This is done by brushing and flossing.
Unfortunately, gum disease progresses painlessly on the whole so that you do not notice the damage it is doing. However, the bacteria are sometimes more active, and this makes your gums sore. This can lead to gum abscesses, and pus may ooze from around the teeth. Over a number of years, the bone supporting the teeth can be lost. If the disease is left untreated for a long time, treatment can become more difficult.
The first sign is blood on the toothbrush or in the rinsing water when you clean your teeth. Your gums may also bleed when you are eating, leaving a bad taste in your mouth. Your breath may also become unpleasant.
Prosthodontics – A prosthodontist is a dental specialist who is skilled in the replacement of missing teeth and the restoration of natural teeth. They are registered on the general dental council’s specialist list, and have had at least 4 years of postgraduate training within a teaching hospital. This type of specialist is trained to deal with complicated and simple restorations of the whole mouth as well as treating facial deformities. Common procedures treated by a prosthodontist may include dentures, fixed bridges, crowns, implants, veneers and more.
Endodontics – An endodontist is a dentist that specialises in the care and treatment and diagnosis of the dental pulp, tooth root, and surrounding tissues and in the associated practice of root canal therapy. Patients are referred to an endodontist when their nerve becomes infected.
Periodontology - A periodontist is a dental specialist that has completed an additional 4 years of specialty training in diagnosing, preventing and treating gum disease. Periodontists can also place dental implants as well as perform cosmetic periodontal treatments.
Dental Implant – A dental implant is a small screw that acts as an artificial tooth root when placed into the jawbone. It is made of titanium, a metal well-accepted by the body and one that can form a strong bond with the bone to create a stable foundation, to create an anchor for the placement of a crown, bridge or denture.
Hypodontia – Is the dental term for missing teeth. Sometimes teeth do not form, it is generally a genetic problem and often occurs in families.
An emergency service is provided so that we can continue to look after our regular patients if dental problems occur when the practice is closed. This information is available out of hours on the answer phone. Emergency appointments are available Monday to Friday during normal surgery hours. These are bookable no more than 24 hours in advance.
Time constraints limit the treatment that can be performed during emergency appointments and whilst we will endeavor to resolve your immediate problem, it will occasionally be necessary to book follow-up appointments to enable treatment completion.
Should you have an out of hours dental emergency that cannot wait, please ring the surgery on 01424 845530 where our out of hours emergency numbers will be provided.
Your call will be triaged and dependant on the problem advice will be given or a dentist will be called out to see you at the practice.
This service is only available to our registered patients. If a dentist is called out there is a minimum charge of £200 to open the surgery, any treatment carried out will incur a further charge.