Treatments

Crowns

A crown is a cap that is placed over a tooth and held in place by dental adhesive or cement.

Crowns are used for several reasons:

  • as a protective cover for badly decayed teeth or fractured teeth
  • as a permanent restoration for teeth with large fillings
  • to correct minor problems in natural teeth like spacing and irregular shape or severe discolouration.
What are crowns made from?

Crowns can be made from a variety of materials.  They can be made from plastic, ceramic or metal alloys.  A combination of metal and ceramic is also possible to maximise strength and simulate the appearance of natural teeth.

How are crowns made?

Firstly, a thorough clinical examination is conducted with radiographs, by the dentist.  The suitability for crowns is assessed and any preparatory work is carried out.  Your dentist will also be able to advise on material choices, treatment sequence and any other concerns you may have.

At the second appointment, the teeth to be crowned are prepared. This involves reduction of the tooth size (usually under local anaesthesia) followed by an impression or mould of the prepared tooth.  This trimming of the tooth is required to create space for the crown to be fitted.  The mould taken is then sent to a laboratory where skilled technicians will fabricate the crown. In the meantime, a temporary crown is made and fitted onto the trimmed tooth.

At the third appointment, the temporary crown is removed and the tooth surfaces cleaned.  The completed crown is tried on the tooth for fit, harmony with the bite, and appearance.  Finally, the crown is cemented onto the prepared tooth with dental cement.

How long do crowns last and how do I care for them?

Crowns are made of inert materials that do not deteriorate over time. However, the underlying tooth is still prone to decay and gum disease.

Ceramic on the surface may chip or fracture. Avoid chewing excessively-hard substances like ice or bones. Daily brushing and flossing are essential for maintaining good oral health as well as keeping the crown trouble-free. The most vulnerable portion of the crown is the margin or the junction between tooth and crown.

Regular check-ups will enable your dentist to detect any problems with your crown and recommend necessary treatment.

Teeth Whitening

Whitening is a process where the tooth discolouration is 'whitened' to a lighter shade. It removes the staining agent through chemical means. It is a safe procedure when carried out under professional supervision. Treatment results usually depend on the severity of the discolouration. Both vital (i.e. live) and non-vital teeth (e.g. tooth with root removed) can be bleached and may take several visits to complete. It is not effective on dental restorations such as amalgam fillings, metal or porcelain crowns, etc.

Teeth can discolour for various reasons. The dentist will recommend the most ideal method based on your oral condition after an in-office examination to establish the cause and nature of your tooth discolouration, as well as provide you with more information on the various types of whitening procedures available, duration & frequency of treatment.

Sedation

It's not uncommon for people to be afraid of going to the dentist or of some dental treatments. Sometimes, a dentist might suggest that you be sedated during the treatment to put you at ease. This is usually done using nitrous oxide gas and oxygen, directly into the bloodstream through an injection or with tablets. You will remain awake throughout your treatment but the drugs will mean that you are less aware of what's going on around you and, as a result, you will be far more calm for the duration of the treatment.

Orthodontics

Cosmetic dentistry includes orthodontics or "tooth straightening".

Children are assessed as their permanent teeth develop so that any problems that are found can be dealt with. This service is free to children and  adults can be referred privately

Bridges

These replace removable palates or lost teeth by fitting a replacement tooth or teeth firmly to adjacent teeth. This is altogether a more natural looking and comfortable solution which does not involve removal of the replacement teeth.

Dental care for children

Prevention is always better than cure, which is why we believe in seeing children at the earliest possible age, and making their first visit to the dentist an enjoyable experience.

Children are now expected to have a regular dentist.

The earlier a child is seen by a dentist and examined the quicker potential problems can be spotted before they become actual problems. Advice can be given in the hope of preventing dental problems.

Fee guide

Most treatments are available on the NHS where the charges are fixed by the Department of Health. Private dental treatment is also available which can be tailor-made to your own requirements. In both cases the cost of treatment will be estimated before the commencement of treatment  many patients can receive free or subsidised treatment as follows If you are not exempt from charges, you should pay one of the following charges for each course of treatment you receive.

Band 1 course of treatment - £19.70
This covers an examination, diagnosis (e.g. X-rays), advice on how to prevent future problems, a scale and polish if needed, and application of fluoride varnish or fissure sealant. If you require urgent care, even if your urgent treatment needs more than one appointment to complete, you will only need to pay one Band 1 charge.

Band 2 course of treatment - £53.90
This covers everything listed in Band 1 above, plus any further treatment such as fillings, root canal work or if your dentist needs to take out one or more of your teeth.

Band 3 course of treatment - £233.70
This covers everything listed in Bands 1 and 2 above, plus crowns, dentures and bridges.