We aim to prevent disease rather than treat it later. We provide fluoride varnish and fissure sealants for child patients to combat tooth decay. We complete orthodontic extractions, and have links with local orthodontic and child dentist specialist for timely referrals.
We can offer two different dentures depending on the clinical situation and your preference, either a metal or an acrylic denture. Our laboratories can repair broken dentures or make tooth additions within a day, giving you the best service.
At Westwood Dental we aim to see all patients who are in need of emergency treatment within opening hours as soon as possible. In the unlikely event that we cannot see you during opening hours, we can find available appointments for you quickly, with one of our sister practices the area.
Your dentist will first check your teeth and gums, and talk to you about any treatment you need. The main aim is to help you get your mouth really healthy.
The hygienist or dentist will thoroughly ‘scale and polish’ your teeth.
You will be shown the best ways to brush and how to clean in between your teeth using interdental brushes or floss to remove the bacterial ‘plaque’, which forms constantly on your teeth. When you eat or drink something sugary, the bacteria in the plaque turn the sugar into acid, which may cause tooth decay. Plaque can also cause gum inflammation (swelling and soreness) if it is not regularly and thoroughly removed. The hard tartar (or ‘calculus’) which builds up on the teeth also starts off as plaque.
Your dentist and hygienist will also talk to you about your diet, and any habits such as smoking and drinking.
Dr Nick Lewis, our restorative consultant and resident Implantologist, specialises in treating patients with complex restorative needs including providing solutions for difficult denture cases) and problems associated with advanced gum disease. He accepts self referrals and also referrals from local dentists. All patients referred to him, are returned to the referring dentist, once treatment is completed.
Download our guide on Dental Implants here.
What is root canal treatment?
Root canal treatment may be required when the nerve and blood supply of the tooth (also known as the pulp) has become infected either due to decay or injury. The aim of root canal treatment is to remove the infection from the root canals in order to allow for healing to occur.
What does root canal treatment involve?
The tooth will be isolated and kept clean throughout the root canal treatment with a rubber dam. The tooth will be made numb with a local anaesthetic, the infected pulp will be removed and any infection will be drained. The root canals will be disinfected to remove bacteria and then subsequently filled with a rubber material. A temporary filling will be placed to seal the tooth. Once signs of healing can be seen, a permanent filling will then be placed in the tooth. Root canal treatment usually takes two or more visits to complete.
Heavily broken down teeth may also require a crown after root canal treatment in order to prevent the tooth from fracturing.
After your root canal treatment has been completed, your dentist will regularly monitor the healing of your tooth at your check-ups.
What are the benefits?
The benefits of root canal treatment include:
- Removing infection from the root canal
- Relief of any pain and swelling caused by infection in the root canals
- Prevention of further spread of infection
- The tooth can be kept in the mouth and thus be used for chewing and eating
Are there any alternatives to root canal treatment?
The alternative to having a root canal treatment is to have the tooth out. Once the pulp is destroyed, it is unable to heal, and it is not recommended to leave an infected tooth in the mouth.
Most root canal treatments can be carried out by a general dentist. However, if the tooth has a complex anatomy and or has been previously root treated, it may be advantageous if the treatment is completed by a dentist with advanced skills in endodontics. If your tooth has a complicating factor that makes it eligible for NHS referral, your referring dentist will collect the relevant NHS fee from you and there should be no further charge when you see the dentist with a special interest in endodontics.
Alternatively, you may opt to have your treatment undertaken privately by our internal dentist with a special interest in endodontics (Dr Shreeti Patel). Another option is to be privately referred to an external specialist in endodontics.
Our friendly team of dentists, nurses and receptionists will be more than happy to discuss these options with you at your appointment.
For more information on root canal treatments, please visit:
What is Cosmetic Dental Treatment?
Cosmetic treatment includes dental treatment that allows the appearance of teeth to be improved. The colour, shape and alignment of teeth can be improved using a variety of treatments. Treatments offered include: tooth whitening, veneers, white fillings, crowns, bridges and implants.
What does tooth whitening involve and what different methods are available?
Tooth whitening is an effective way of improving the colour of your teeth without removing any of the tooth surface. Teeth naturally darken with age and due to dietary stains such as tea, coffee and red wine. Stains are removed from the enamel during the teeth whitening process.
Home whitening treatments are available where moulds are taken of the teeth and clear trays are made to fit precisely over your teeth. You will then be shown how to apply tooth whitening gel into the tray. The trays have to be worn for a minimum of 3 hours a day for two weeks for the teeth to lighten in shade.
In-surgery tooth whitening procedures can also be done. This is where the gel is applied to the teeth in-surgery and the gels are activated by bright lights. This is a single visit treatment.
Tooth whitening is only recommended in dentally fit patients. It is not recommended for those with very sensitive teeth or in pregnancy. Colour regression may also occur in smokers.
What are veneers?
Veneers can be used to improve the shade of the front teeth and achieve minor changes to the shape of the front teeth. Veneers are thin slices of porcelain that can be placed over the front teeth- much like a false nail being placed over a nail. They are made to accurately fit over the surface of your front teeth, with minimal tooth reduction required.
White fillings can be placed on the teeth to repair broken teeth and improve the appearance of teeth.
How can crowns improve the appearance of teeth?
If teeth are heavily broken down, then a crown may be required to protect the remaining tooth structure. Aesthetic crowns can be made to look tooth-like in colour. A range of ceramic crowns, metal-ceramic crowns and composite crowns are available. Your dentist will advise you on the advantages and disadvantages of each type of crown.
Discoloured teeth can be a result of many factors. Most of which can be improved with teeth whitening. There is a choice of Home Whitening or In Surgery Whitening. Same day Teeth Whitening is now available using the Zoom Technique. We can achieve up to ten shades of whitening in just one visit, with results typically lasting for years. Many patients report that they have never felt so comfortable with their smiles.
Many patients choose elective cosmetic procedures such as veneers to improve their appearance. Poorly shaped teeth, and spaces between teeth, can easily be corrected through bonding with veneers, broken down teeth can be repaired with all ceramic crowns and bridges which look extremely lifelike. They look good and feel good and blend in with the surrounding natural dentition.
Adults have a maximum of 32 teeth. The wisdom teeth are the last teeth to erupt at around 17-25 years of age. Nowadays, many people have jaws which are too small to accommodate these wisdom teeth. This can lead to a shortage of space for the wisdom teeth to erupt into.
Why do wisdom teeth often cause problems?
Often wisdom teeth only erupt partially, and some gum can remain covering part of the tooth. This makes the wisdom tooth more difficult to clean and can lead to the gum around the tooth becoming infected. Dentists describe this infection of the gum around the wisdom tooth as ‘pericoronitis.’ Our friendly team of dentists, hygienists and nurses can advise you on the best way to keep your wisdom teeth clean.
If the inflammation is mild, then good oral hygiene, warm salt water mouth rinses and rinsing with chlorhexidine mouthwash (for a maximum of two weeks), may be enough to alleviate the inflammation. However, if the inflammation is more severe or has occurred before, a course of antibiotics may be prescribed and the tooth may be subsequently extracted.
Often this shortage of space may lead to the wisdom tooth lying at an angle against the tooth in front of it, and the dentist will describe the tooth as an ‘impacted’ wisdom tooth. Sometimes this can lead to bacterial plaque accumulating around the tooth and this may lead to decay or gum disease affecting the wisdom tooth or the tooth in front of it. If the decay or gum disease is very advanced, the wisdom tooth may have to be extracted.
When is extraction of wisdom teeth advised?
At Westwood dental practice, we are strong believers in evidence based practice. We firmly adhere to National Institute of Clinical Excellence Guidelines which states that lower wisdom teeth should only be extracted if:
- Infection of the gum has occurred two or more times or if there has been one severe episode of infection around the gum.
- The tooth is decayed, or if it is causing decay or gum disease in the adjacent tooth.
Is extraction of wisdom teeth difficult?
The difficulty of the extraction will depend on the position of the wisdom tooth and the nature and curvature of the roots of the wisdom tooth. Each case is individually assessed and your dentist will advise you if you need to be referred to a specialist oral surgeon at the hospital or a specialist oral surgeon in general dental practice. All extractions are carried under local anaesthetic. Extractions may be provided under intra-venous sedation in a hospital setting.
What are the benefits?
- Relief of pain and swelling caused by infection
- Prevention of further spread of infection
All members of our dental team are happy to answer any questions you may have regarding your treatment. For more information on wisdom teeth, please visit: