How To Overcome Your Fear Of The Dentist

Dental anxiety is fear, anxiety or stress associated with a dental setting. Having dental anxiety can cause delayed appointments and avoiding treatment. Attending the dentist is vital to ensure you are checked for mouth cancer, gum disease and dental decay.

A fear of the dentist is very common for patients in the UK. Newby Dental Practice is here to provide tips to help you feel better when attending the dentist.

Signs Of Dental Anxiety

People with dental anxiety may experience:

  • Sweating
  • increased heart rate
  • Dry mouth
  • Stomach pain

What Causes Dental Anxiety?

Dental anxiety can often be attributed to a fear of pain. This often derives from a previous experience that has resulted in pain or hearing ‘horror stories’ from friends and family. However, thanks to the latest developments in technology, appointments for patients are much more comfortable and often painless.

Some patients may be embarrassed by the appearance of their mouth and self conscious about possible mouth odour. This can result in dental anxiety and prevent patients coming to the dentist. Fortunately, our experienced dentists are trained to treat all types of dental health concerns and will be able to help.

How To Ease Dental Anxiety

Ask your dentist to play some music or talk to you about other subjects to take your mind off your treatment. This will give you something else to focus on and help to keep you calm.

Bring support to your appointment. Ask your dentist if you can bring a friend or family member to the appointment as having a familiar face nearby will help to ease your nerves.

Patients who suffer with more severe dental anxiety can be offered forms of sedation to help them relax. Our friendly team are available to give any advice if you are concerned about your visit. Please call us on 01723 670500 or email us at

Is Chewing Gum Good For Your Teeth?

Chewing sugar-free gum stimulates saliva production, which helps to clear away food, rinse away bacteria, strengthen the enamel on your teeth and reduce acid in your mouth that can dissolve the enamel.


Xylitol is a natural sweetener which can be effective at preventing cavities. Sugar-free gum often contains xylitol and it has been shown to reduce the amount of cavity causing bacteria in plaque. It also helps to neutralise acids made by bacteria, strengthening tooth enamel.

Can Gum Strengthen My Teeth?

Some chewing gums contain a substance called phosphopeptide-amorphous calcium phosphate (CPP-ACP). It has been shown to remineralize or slow down tooth decay.

What Gum Should I Use?

Make sure that you are chewing sugar-free gum. If you use gum that contains sugar, your teeth will be constantly surrounded by a sugary environment until you dispose of the gum. This would be very harmful to your teeth.

Do I Still Need To Brush My Teeth?

Yes. Chewing gum is not an alternative to brushing your teeth. It is helpful to use between meals to neutralise the acd left behind but is it not a substitute to brushing and flossing.

How Does My Dental Health Affect My General Health?

You are probably aware of the impact of your oral hygiene on your teeth and gums, but did you know that poor oral hygiene can have adverse effects on your general health?

What Problems Could My Dental Health Cause?

  • Heart disease
  • Respiratory disease
  • Strokes
  • Diabetes

Heart Disease

People with gum disease are twice as likely to suffer with heart disease than those who don’t have gum disease. Bacteria from the mouth can travel in the bloodstream. The bacteria produce protein which causes the platelets in the blood to stick together in the blood vessels. This makes blood clots more likely, reducing normal blood flow so the heart doesn’t get all the nutrients and oxygen it requires. If affected badly, this could lead to a heart attack.


Researchers have discovered that when our gums bleed and become inflamed, it causes changes in how blood and oxygen flows to the brain. Gum disease is associated with inflammation which plays a role in atherosclerosis (hardening of the blood vessels).


People with diabetes are more likely to have gum disease. It is likely that this is because people with diabetes are more likely to get infections in general. If you have diabetes, it is important that any gum disease is diagnosed as it can increase your blood sugar, putting you at risk of complications.

Respiratory Disease

It is thought that bacterial chest infections are caused by breathing in droplets from the throat and mouth into the lungs. This can cause pneumonia or make an existing condition worse. People with gum disease have more bacteria in their mouths which is why they may be more likely to develop a respiratory disease. This is particularly the case for elderly people, which is why it is important that they maintain a good oral hygiene routine.

What Should I Look Out For?

  • Inflammation of the gums.
  • Bleeding gums.
  • Bad taste in your mouth.
  • Bad breath.
  • Loose teeth.
  • Regular mouth infections.

If you are concerned you may have gum disease, call us on 01723 670500 to book an appointment.

Energy Drinks And Your Teeth

There are many people that believe that energy drinks are not as harmful as sugar-filled fizzy drinks, however, this may not be the case.

Even if the energy drinks that you are consuming are sugar free, they still contain acid. The acid in the drinks causes the pH of the mouth to lower considerably. It takes around 30 minutes for the saliva to neutralise this acid and return the pH back to normal. For those 30 minutes your teeth are essentially being bathed in an acidic environment.

The hyperactive energy produced by the drinks can also cause people to grind their teeth. This can cause tooth breakage and damage.

Energy Drinks And Gums

As the enamel breaks down, it can’t protect the softer parts of the teeth or prevent the bacteria from causing damage. As the enamel wears down, the gums become more susceptible to damage. They can start to recede and expose the tooth roots which can cause the gums to bleed and become inflamed, showing early signs of gum disease.

How Can I Reduce The Damage Caused?

Although it is not recommended to drink energy drinks regularly, if you are going to drink them from time to time, it would be a good idea to try drinking through a straw to minimise your teeth’s exposure.

Another way to reduce the effect would be to rinse your mouth out with water after finishing your drink to try to neutralise the acidity in your mouth.

Try not to sip your drink. The longer it takes you to drink your energy drink, the less time your teeth have to repair themselves from the acid attack.

Alternative Ways To Boost Your Energy

A few simple lifestyle changes could help to boost your energy.

  • Engage in regular physical activity.
  • Drink at least 2 litres of water a day.
  • Make sure you get enough sleep.
  • Include lots of fruit and vegetables in your diet.