Which Dental Procedures Are Not Available From The NHS?

While many services, such as crowns, root canals and fillings are available on the NHS, many other services are not. The majority of these procedures fall under the realm of ‘cosmetic dentistry’; dental work to improve the appearance or comfort of your teeth and gums rather than an essential service for their health. Cosmetic dentistry includes procedures like dental implants, veneers and teeth whitening that are all available from your dentist. Read on to find out more about these additional services that your dentist can provide.

Dental Implants

A dental implant is the most permanent and long term solution to replace a lost or broken tooth, and is considered a significant improvement on the typical denture solution. Consisting of a titanium rod, a support collar and a crown, implants can be used to replace both single teeth and multiple adjacent teeth within a single fixture.

Initially the titanium rod is inserted into a prepared socket in the bone until it becomes fixed (a process known as osseointegration) before the support collar and crown are attached later on.

Once the dental implant is in place and is fully integrated within the jaw bone it will function exactly as a normal tooth would.

Veneers

Veneers can be used for several reasons in cosmetic dentistry; either to cover up stained or cracked teeth, or to correct the size of inter-dental gaps. They provide an excellent finish to the external surface of teeth and comfortably hide from view any aspect of your teeth that you’d rather not see.

The procedure for veneers can vary slightly but typically involves shaving away a layer of tooth equal in thickness to the veneer that will then be applied. The veneer is then fixed in place on the shaved surface of the tooth using dental cement.

Teeth Whitening

Teeth whitening is an extremely popular dental procedure, probably because it can quickly lead to a significant improvement in teeth appearance. Teeth whitening is particularly popular among those with dark or stained teeth but can be taken advantage of anyone who would like to brighten their smile.

The procedure involves the application of a bleaching gel, followed by a specialised light source to accelerate the whitening.

Other Procedures

In addition to the services detailed above, private dental care offers the chance to take advantage of the latest and best advancements in oral care, with high quality treatments available for standard procedures like bridgework root canals and tooth restoration.

 

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What Can Be Treated with Botox?

Over the years, botox has developed into a product with a diverse range of uses. Through the good and the bad it has begun to revolutionize how we use it in our everyday lives. The list of uses is forever growing as new technologies improve each day, but the most common uses are currently for medical, research and cosmetic treatments. Although it has historically been used mostly by women, over recent years it has begun to find a home with men as well.

Botox, also know as the purified form of botulinum toxin has been known to ease the pain of chronic migraine suffers through regular injections, whether that be weekly, monthly or yearly. These types of injections are available as on option on the NHS in parts of the UK, and is offered as part of a safe and effective treatment for adult sufferers.

As well as injections in the forehead, it is also used for those who suffer from excessive sweating. It works by blocking out the signals the brain sends to the sweat glands, which balances both the problem and the condition for months at a time. These types of injections are currently used in the feet, face, armpits and forehead.

The most common use of botox is through cosmetic procedures – preventing wrinkles. It is achieved by injecting the toxin into the facial muscles (most commonly the wrinkles between the eyebrows) to paralyse them. However, results aren’t seen instantly, but they can normally be seen within 3-5 days. Many private clinics, such as NW1 Dental Care in Camden, offer botox treatments to patients.

Over recent years it has been found to minimise the look of crow’s feet and superficial wrinkles, but as something that is still new to the market, it is not yet known what the long term side effects are.

Through the use of medical and cosmetic needs the different uses all have one thing in common. The biggest benefit to the injections are that they are used to relax the muscles, whether it be facial or not, and overtime, the long term use of these injections is to prevent the muscles from repairing themselves to their original state.

herpes – causes and treatments

It’s Just a Cold Sore

There it is, a small, round blister on the edge of the mouth. It seems like it might be a pimple, but you can’t be sure. So on goes the acne cream, the lip balm and a plethora of home remedies that serve more to placate the sufferer than actually cure the ailment, which is the dreaded cold sore. While it is a small thing really, to the sufferer, it stands out like a boulder, impeding your daily progress with worry and inattentiveness as your mind is fixated on the small, round blister. The embarrassment does more damage than the cold sore itself, so a little education can go a long way toward alleviating both the cold sore and the stigma. A visit to your local dentist is probably a very good starting point.

Picture of various types of herpes

 

 

Cold Sore Causes

Cold sores, or fever blisters, are generally caused by the herpes simplex 1 virus, although simplex 2 can also cause cold sores. Anyone can get a cold sore; it simply requires contact with the virus and a mucous membrane, or through a compromised area of the skin, such as cut or chapped lips. A cold sore is an area on the mouth that has become ulcerated as a result of the infection. They are normally round with a deep red center. It is important to have a proper diagnosis, either from your dentist or your GP, so proper treatment can begin.

Cold sores can last for up to twelve days and are highly contagious when active. Simplex 1 will infect cells that are exposed through cuts or chapped lips. Once the infection has passed, the virus resides in the skin’s nerves’ spinal dorsal root in its latent stage. When it becomes active it will travel back to the site of the original infection where it is capable of causing new lesions. When the virus is latent, it is much less capable of causing infection. An active lesion or cold sore will be contagious for 7-12 days where it becomes extremely infectious. A lesion without treatment can last as long as three weeks.

The virus can be triggered by hormones, stress, and trauma to the area. Sometimes the virus becomes active without any apparent precipitating factor.

Removing the Stigma

The best way to abolish the stigma connected to having the herpes virus is through education. Firstly, genital herpes is not caused by the same herpes virus that causes cold sores. While they are both herpes viruses, cold sores are mostly caused by herpes simplex 1, while genital herpes is caused by simplex 2. Although it is possible for simplex 2 to infect other areas of the body, its mode of transmission is through direct mucosal membrane contact. As people begin to understand that cold sores can’t cause, nor are they a result of genital herpes, the less stigma will be attached to the virus.

Secondly, most people are infected with herpes simplex 1 already. One estimate sites that up to 80% of the UK population is infected, however, simply because the virus is in the body does not mean it will cause a cold sore. Some people never have an outbreak, others will have only one, but a segment of the population will succumb to multiple outbreaks. While cold sores cannot be cured, they can be treated, and in some cases prevented.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Clinical lab analysis and testing can be done on cold sores. These tests may include PCR to identify the virus. Your dentist or doctor can swab an active lesion to test for the presence of herpes simplex 1.

Because the cold sore is viral in origin, treatment should include anti-viral medications. Some patients take medications like Aciclovir, which is considered an antiviral medication and interferes with the replication process of the virus. Some patients who suffer severe outbreaks take this medication on a daily basis to prevent cold sore episodes, others take it only when they feel an outbreak coming on or when they actually have an active lesion. There are also anti-viral creams that can be used to reduce the duration of an outbreak.

To reduce embarrassment, online treatments can be found for conditions such as genital herpes on www.drfelix.co.uk an online pharmacy , a secure online treatment portal, so that hopefully minimizes any social stigma. In effect, no-one need ever know you are treating the virus, ensuring your total privacy. If you are taking Aciclovir then the dose will normally be 200mg five times a day for five days. If you are prescribed Valaciclovir, it is a usually a one gram dose taken three times a day for seven days and for those taking Famciclovir, the dose is on 500mg tablet once a day for three days.