The Benefits Of Implant Retained Dentures In Purley

If your dentures feel unstable in your mouth, implants may offer the solution.

Dental implants are now widely used for both single and multiple teeth replacement. Their strength, longevity and ease of care make them very popular with an increasing number of our Purley patients. One use that they are perhaps less well known for though, is their role in securing loose dentures.

With millions of people wearing false teeth, it is very likely that many will have become accustomed to having them, and will have adjusted to them so that they are generally, happy to eat with them. Few denture wearers though will deny that there are times when their dentures let them down, either by moving around in their mouth, or creating difficulties when eating certain foods.

At the Confidental Clinic in Purley, we are able to offer a solution to these problems in the shape of implant retained dentures.

The implant procedure

Depending on each individual case, we typically use anything from two to four dental implants to stabilise your dentures. This does require some minor oral surgery but this will be done using a strong local anaesthetic and should cause no more discomfort that some other dental procedures.

Once the implants have been placed, your dentures can then be attached to the implants, providing you with a stability that you may not have thought possible.

The benefits

Read more ›

Why Sipping Drinks Could Be Harming Your Teeth

Although we are often told that it is polite to sip, it can lead to enamel erosion on our teeth.

Older patients of our Purley practice may remember, as a child, being told not to ‘guzzle’ their drink. This word is barely used now but basically means to drink it fast and greedily. It was certainly not deemed to be polite to do so, and young children were taught to drink as their parents did, which was generally to sip.

Whilst it may well have seemed more polite and genteel to sip drinks slowly, recent studies have shown that this action, although done with the best of intentions, is actually one of the reasons why many of us have compromised enamel on our teeth.

Eroded enamel

Enamel erosion may not seem to be as bad as, say, a broken tooth, but it is just as serious, if not immediately quite as uncomfortable. On a minor front, eroded enamel creates a rough surface on the tooth and any staining products that are consumed, such as red wine or tea, will stick to the surface much more easily, causing premature teeth discolouration. More seriously, once the protective enamel layer has been damaged, the softer and more porous dentin layer beneath it is exposed. This allows acids and bacteria to enter the tooth and helps the decaying process to begin. Bacteria can also enter the root canals more easily and infections may follow soon after.

How to drink

Read more ›

Wet Or Dry Toothbrush?

Our take on the recent discussions on social media about how we should brush our teeth.

You may have recently seen a number of tweets about whether you should wet your toothbrush before adding the toothpaste, or put it on dry, before brushing. Surprisingly, this simple debate seems to have started a social media storm, so we thought that we would also put forward the thoughts of our Purley dental team on this particular subject.

Wet or dry?

The reality is that it makes little difference whether you use a wet or dry toothbrush, unless perhaps, you suffer from a dry mouth, in which case, wetting the toothbrush may help to apply it more evenly in the mouth. Providing that you brush your teeth well, and are able to supply sufficient saliva to moisten the mouth, either way will work … providing that you brush your teeth correctly.

The right way

You should always use a toothpaste that contains fluoride. Most brands will do, but if you use a ‘natural’ toothpaste, do make sure to check the ingredients. Fluoride strengthens the enamel on the teeth and helps to prevent tooth decay.

You should brush your teeth using a gentle pressure, and in a circular motion. It is important that you do not press too hard as this can damage the enamel and can also cause gum recession. For this reason, it may be better to buy a good quality electric toothbrush which includes a pressure sensor. This will then cut out temporarily when you apply too much pressure.


Read more ›

Improve Your Smile With A Lip Enhancement!

When having great looking teeth is not quite enough.

If you are a regular patient of the Confidental Clinic in Purley, you may have elected to let us help you have a great looking smile. Straighter teeth using orthodontics and whiter teeth using our effective teeth whitening procedure can make a great difference to your smile, improving it beyond what you may have thought possible.

But what if this seems to be not quite enough?

Great looking teeth are essential for a beautiful smile, but sometimes, other features can let us down. Framing our teeth are our lips, and, as we get older, these often lose some of their volume and appear to be thin and unattractive.

Dermal fillers

As part of the process of growing older, we lose some of the natural collagen in our body. It is this that provides both fullness and elasticity of certain features, such as our lips and cheeks. As these start to lose their shape and volume, sagging cheeks and thinning lips contribute towards our ageing appearance.

Whilst we can’t yet stop this loss of collagen, our Purley patients can benefit from a facial aesthetics treatment known as dermal fillers. These are used to replace the lost collagen in the cheeks and lips, and are also very useful at treating ‘crow’s feet’, or the lines around our eyes.

Like the better known Botox, dermal fillers are applied to the affected areas via a very fine needle. Patients may feel a little ‘scratch’ as the needle enters the skin, but this should otherwise be a relatively comfortable procedure. There have been very few side effects noted of this treatment and it is widely considered to be a safe and effective procedure when provided by qualified practitioners such as those at the Confidental Clinic.

You may experience a little localised swelling and bruising initially, but this will soon subside. The effects of dermal fillers can last for anything from approximately six to eighteen months, depending on the individual. The treatment can be repeated safely, for as long as the patient wishes, once the effects start to disappear.

A youthful smile

Read more ›

Dentophobia – Treatment in Purley

patient with dental fear

Overcoming, or easing, your fear of the dentist.

Many people have phobias. Some, such as Omphalophobia, or fear of the navel (yes, it does exist!) are naturally quite rare.

Others, such as Aviophobia, or fear of flying, are much more common. Competing with the fear of flying for the number one phobia though, is Dentophobia, or a fear of the dentist.

It might surprise Purley patients at Confidental Clinic to know that dentists themselves are not immune from this phobia. Realistically, having someone working in your mouth a few inches from your face is never going to be high on anyone’s list of favourite experiences, but equally it shouldn’t be unpleasant or painful. Few people would deny that receiving necessary dental treatment is essential, so what then, can we do to help those who have a fear that prevents them from visiting their local dentist?


Communication with our patients is important and this is especially the case when a patient is exhibiting signs of anxiety. Our dentists are experienced in treating nervous patients and will be able to help most patients relax through their friendly chair-side manner.

Modern Equipment

One phobia that many nervous patients have is the sound of the drill. The high pitched whirring sound is not there to frighten you, but is the result of the drill rotating at very high speeds. Whilst this may sound like a technicality, it enables procedures to be carried out quickly and efficiently, reducing the treatment time. The use of other equipment such as x-rays and scans means that we are able to treat any damage in as minimally invasive way as possible.

IV sedation

Read more ›

Causes Of Enamel Damage Or Erosion

dental surgery

Four things to avoid to keep the protective enamel on your teeth strong and healthy.

The outer part of the tooth is known as the enamel layer which is a hard, non-porous, material that protects the more vulnerable inner part of our teeth.

As the root canals inside our teeth contain the nerves, it is not hard to see why we should keep our enamel as strong and healthy as possible.

Unfortunately, as some patients of the Confidental clinic in Purley have discovered over the years, modern life can throw up many challenges to the enamel layer on our teeth. In today’s blog, we take a look at some of these and how to minimise them.

Sugar and fizzy drinks

Sugar has long been the enemy of healthy teeth. It is not actually the sugar itself which causes the damage though, but the acids that it creates. It provides a food source for the potentially harmful bacteria in our mouth and as both the acid bi-products and bacteria increase, the enamel comes under attack, starting the erosion process.

High sugar drinks especially, have been linked to the rise in the number of children needing hospital dental appointments to have teeth extracted due to decay. It goes without saying that these are best moderated, with water or very diluted, sugar-free options being better alternatives.

Acidic fruits

Many people who consider themselves to live healthily, may well have a diet that is high in fruit. Whilst this food certainly offers a great source of vitamins and minerals, the high acid content in much fruit, especially the citric ones such as oranges and lemons, are actually quite harmful to our tooth enamel. This is thought to be one of the reasons for a higher incidence than normal of tooth decay in vegans.


Read more ›

Do We Need To Drink Milk To Have Healthy Teeth?

With an increasing number of people avoiding dairy products, will this harm our teeth?

One of the wisdoms passed down through generations is that drinking milk is essential for healthy teeth and bones. With veganism becoming increasingly popular in the UK, and some reports indicating that vegans are more prone to dental problems, is milk actually essential if we want our teeth to remain in a good condition?

Milk is very high in calcium, and calcium is essential not only to build healthy teeth, but also strong bones too. Indeed, people lacking in calcium may be more prone to broken and fractured bones than someone who has healthy bones. The same applies to our teeth, and anyone lacking in this important nutrient may well find themselves needing more dental care than others.


Although milk is high in calcium, it is also worth remembering that much of this advice came from an era where rationing was common. During this time, people ate less meat, and, although more natural food was eaten, and therefore less sugars etc, the diet could be monotonous and was likely to be lacking in some nutrients. The advice therefore, to drink milk for strong teeth and bones, was possibly born from these shortages.

Fighting decay

At the Confidental Clinic in Purley, one of the most common procedures that we carry out on a daily basis is the filling of decayed teeth. A high sugar diet and poor cleaning of the teeth are two of the main reasons for this. A diet with dairy products can help in the fight against tooth decay not only because of the calcium in milk and cheeses, but also a type of protein called caseins. Caseins, when combined with the calcium and phosphorus in dairy products, form a protective film on the enamel. This film then helps to protect against some of the potentially teeth damaging bacteria that live in our mouths.

Going dairy free

Read more ›

Stress Related Dental Problems

Neglect and bruxism can lead to a significant amount of damage to your teeth.

Stress is a reality of daily life for most of us. This can come from many different angles including family matters and work.

It is widely acknowledged that stress can have a negative impact on our general health, but it also affects our teeth and gums too.

Whilst overcoming, or at least reducing stress may be difficult, it is worth taking the time to make changes to your life for the sake of your teeth, and your overall health.


When we are stressed, we often turn to instant ‘solutions’ to our problems. One of the main choices is often alcohol as it is freely available, and many people do find that it helps them to relax. Unfortunately, ‘too much of a good thing’ can have consequences, and, whilst it may relax us, too much alcohol consumption can lead not only to heart problems and other issues, but also to oral health problems such as mouth cancers and periodontitis.

Our diet too may suffer when we are stressed, and we may find ourselves turning to ‘comfort’ foods; many of which contain very high levels of sugar which is harmful to our teeth.


Read more ›

Healthy Teeth At Christmas

Make sure not to let your oral health care slip.

Christmas can be an exciting time, but also very busy. Whether attending social events, family parties or simply keeping an eye on the kids, it is probably not surprising that many of our regular routines go out of the window at this time of the year.

Some of these, such as our diets, can cause some temporary issues such as weight gain. Usually, once we return to ‘normality’ though, things will return to the way that they were.

The same cannot be said about dental care. Any damage caused to your teeth over the festive period, will not simply repair itself. Professional treatment would likely be needed by one of our Purley dentists to restore your teeth, and we are sure that you would prefer to avoid the need for this, where possible.

Below, the Confidental Clinic team have put together a quick list of how you can help to avoid the need for either emergency treatment, or restorative dental treatments once the holidays are over.

Keep cleaning your teeth – It might be easier to get straight into bed without cleaning your teeth, after a long day. It only takes a few minutes to clean your teeth though, and the effort is well worth it.

Keep flossing – There will almost certainly be a lot of toffee, chocolate and other teeth damaging foods that get trapped between your teeth at Christmas. Try to remember to floss, in order to remove it, if you possibly can.

Read more ›

Energy Drinks – Why You Should Avoid (Or At Least Reduce) Them

High sugar drinks are very bad for your teeth, and your general health too!

We probably expect athletes and sportsmen to use energy drinks to give their performance a short term boost. What has been surprising though, is the number of people walking down a street, doing their everyday thing, but also drinking a high energy drink.

We are unsure of why this is the case, although marketing and role models obviously help, but we can’t help wondering if people are aware of the potential harm they are doing to their teeth.

There are two types of energy drinks that are very popular; those with high sugar levels (including natural sugars) and those that mix sugars with caffeine. Both can seriously damage your teeth.

Worn enamel

An increasingly common problem that we see at our Purley dental practice is that of worn and damaged enamel. Whilst there can be other reasons, including bruxism and excess brushing, the damage done by high consumption levels of these high energy drinks is undoubtedly playing a major part.

In addition to the large quantities of sugars that these drinks contain; rather than being drunk quickly over a short period of time, they are often sipped over a long time. This means that the teeth will be almost continuously in contact with the sugars in the drink, allowing insufficient time for saliva flow to effectively wash the sugars away.

If you decide to use a sports drink on occasions, such as for a marathon, this need not be a problem so long as you generally take good care of your teeth. Regular consumption over a long time will almost certainly lead to worn enamel and tooth decay.

What to do

Read more ›