What To Do Following A Tooth Extraction

Immediately after you have had a tooth removed, you should take it easy for the rest of the day. Do as little exercise as possible and keep your head up to avoid any bleeding.

What Precautions Should I Take?

Avoid hot foods and drinks until the anaesthetic wears off. This is because when you are under anaesthesia you will not be able to feel if you are burning your mouth and this could result in serious injury. Also, be careful not to chew your cheek.

Should I Rinse My Mouth Out?

Do not rinse the area for the first 24 hours. It is vital that the socket heals, and you must be careful not to damage the blood clot that is forming. This means that you should try to eat on the other side of your mouth and try not to let your tongue disturb it. If it is disturbed, it can allow infection into the socket which will affect the healing process.

Are There Any Foods Or Drinks I Should Avoid?

Avoid alcohol for at least 24 hours as this can encourage bleeding which would delay the healing process. Eat and drink lukewarm food as normal but try to avoid eating on that side of your mouth.

When Should I Brush?

It is vital that your mouth is kept clean after an extraction to prevent infection. However, be careful around the extraction site as the clot could become dislodged.

What Should I Do If It Bleeds?

It is important to remember that there is likely to be some bleeding for the first day or so. However, if you do notice bleeding, do not rinse out, instead apply pressure to the socket. Bite down on folded piece of clean material, such as a handkerchief for at least 15 minutes. If the bleeding hasn’t stopped after an hour or two, contact your dentist.

How Long Until I Can I Have A Cigarette?

It is important that you don’t do anything that can raise your blood pressure, as this can cause further bleeding. It is recommended that you avoid smoking for as long as possible after an extraction, but this should be for at least the rest of the day after your extraction.

What Should I Do To Help My Mouth Heal?

Different people will heal at different rates. You should keep your mouth and the extraction site as clean as possible, free of debris and food. Don’t rinse for the first 24 hours as this can delay the healing process. After this time, use a salt water mouthwash, which will help to heal the socket. Add a teaspoon of salt to a glass of warm water and gently rinse around the socket twice a day.

What Should I Do If I Am In Pain?

There will usually be some pain in the area for the first few days, and normally some simple pain relief is enough to ease the discomfort. Do not take aspirin as this will make your mouth bleed.

If you are still in pain, it could be due to an infection that has entered the socket. This is called a dry socket. If this is the case it is important to see your dentist, who may place a dressing and prescribe some antibiotics.

If, after reading this post, you still have an unanswered question, please call us on 01723 670500 for advice.

Mouth Cancer Action Month

Mouth Cancer Action Month is a charity campaign to help raise awareness for oral cancer. The campaign takes place throughout November and thousands of people help to raise awareness in their community.

The number of people being diagnosed with mouth cancer is on the rise so it is important that you know how to spot it early and what to do if you notice something unusual. This will help us learn more about cancer so we have a better chance of beating it.

Although there are many risk factors related to the disease, mouth cancer can affect anyone, which is why it is so important that we know what to look out for.

How Can You Take Part?

This November, we need your support. There are lots of ways you can take part:

  • Knowing how to spot mouth cancer early and regularly checking for unusual changes in the mouth.
  • Understanding what is likely to cause mouth cancer and reducing your risk.
  • Acting quickly when you see something out of the ordinary by visiting your dentist.


Fundraising is a great way to raise awareness whilst raising funds. These donations help the Oral Health Foundation continue their important work in learning more about oral cancer and how we can beat it.

For more information about the campaign, visit the Oral Health Foundation website and for more information about oral cancer, please click here to read our blog.

Are Dental X-Rays Safe?

During your visit to the dentist you may need to have x-rays done so that your dentist can get an overall view of your mouth. Many patients feel anxious when having x-rays done as it is unfamiliar to them.

Why Would I Need An X-Ray?

Tooth decay in the early stages may not show any visible signs and it may not initially cause you pain. Sometimes your tooth might look healthy but the x-ray may show something different. From an x-ray, your dental team will be able to see if you have any decay under the enamel, any infections in the root, or any bone loss around the tooth. X-rays can also help the dental team see between your teeth or under the edge of your filling. By finding dental diseases at an early stage, you will be able to treat them before they progress into something more serious.

How Often Should I Have X-Rays?

If you are visiting the dentist as a new patient, the dental team will most likely suggest that you have x-rays. This will help them to identify any issues that need to be taken into account during your treatment. After that, x-rays may be recommended every 6-24 months, depending on the person, their age and the condition of their oral health.

Are X-Rays Dangerous?

While dental x-rays do involve radiation, the exposure levels are so low that they are considered safe to use on children and adults. There are multiple sources of background radiation that you are exposed to daily that give off higher levels of radiation over a year than a dental x-ray. The only circumstance where it may not be considered safe for an x-ray is if you are pregnant. You should inform your dental team if this is the case and they will decide the appropriate course of action.

Why Does My Dentist Leave The Room During An X-Ray

The dental team might take hundreds of x-rays every week. It is important that staff limit their exposure to radiation by moving away from the x-ray beam.

Types Of X-Ray

There are several different types of x-rays which record images at different angles in your mouth. The most common are:

  • Bitewing – This shows the crowns of your teeth ( the part that is visible above your gum).
  • Occlusal – This x-ray shows the entire arch of teeth in either the top or bottom jaw.
  • Panoramic – Used to show the entire mouth on a single image.
  • Periapical – This x-ray focusses on two complete teeth from root to crown.

To summarise, dental x-rays are very safe as they only expose you to minimal levels of radiation. It is important that if your dentist recommends that you have x-rays taken that you follow their advice as without all of the information they will not be able to meet all of your treatment needs.

What Are Your Tooth Whitening Options?

Whitening Toothpastes

The idea of whitening toothpastes has been around for over 50 years, but the science involved has improved drastically. Previously they were extremely abrasive and harmful to your teeth as they removed stain and enamel layers. Modern versions are much more tooth friendly and can help to maintain whiter teeth if used regularly. However, they rarely whiten to a huge degree.

Whitening toothpastes contain detergents and a mild abrasives to gently scrub the staining from the surface of the enamel.

Internal whitening

Teeth can darken for a variety of reasons, such as external trauma. When a tooth experiences trauma, the pulp becomes nectrotic (dead). Blood is released as a result of the inflammation and tubules in the teeth become stained black. Non-vital teeth usually respond well to external bleaching, however it is sometimes necessary to whiten the tooth from within the root canal.

Supervised Home Whitening

Dentist-supervised home whitening is the safest, most popular, well researched whitening procedure. The first step is an assessment and diagnosis, coupled with good quality photographs showing the closest matching shade tab.

This method requires the manufacture of custom made trays by a laboratory.

In Office Whitening

The dentist will apply a fine layer of the bleaching gel and leave it for a period of time before using the suction to remove it and repeating the process.

To further speed up the process, the dentist may shine a special light at your teeth once the gel has been applied. This procedure takes less than an hour and can brighten your smile by upto 6-7 shades.

What Is Causing Your Mouth Pain And What Can You Do?

Mouth pain has many possible sources, including injuries, sores and certain diseases. Keep reading to learn the potential causes of your mouth pain.


You may experience some pain in your mouth if you have had an accident, such as falling over and biting your your lip or tongue. This can cause discomfort and tenderness on the inside of your mouth.

Similarly, you can injure our mouth by biting into food that is too hot. This could result in the roof of your mouth becoming burnt.

Dry Mouth

The salivary glands in your mouth produce saliva that helps to keep your mouth hydrated. If these glands stop producing as much saliva, it causes dry mouth. This can lead to mouth sores or a rough tongue.

In most cases, dry mouth is caused by dehydration but there are other causes, such as certain medications and cancer treatments.

Herpes Simplex Virus

HSV is the virus that causes cold sores

Although cold sores are usually associated with the lips, if you have only recently been infected with the virus, you may develop painful lesions on your tongue, gums and throat.

other symptoms of the virus include:

  • A sore throat
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • A fever
  • Muscle aches

Other Infections

As well as HSV, there are other diseases that can cause painful lesions to occur in your mouth:

  • Chickenpox
  • Shingles
  • Hand, foot and mouth disease
  • HIV
  • Infectious mononucleosis

Oral Thrush

Oral thrush is a fungal infection and anyone can get it but you will be more prone to infection if you have a weakened immune system or underlying health conditions.

Oral thrush can appear as cream-coloured lesions in many places within your mouth.

Oral Cancer

Oral cancer can affect many areas of the mouth including:

  • Roof of the mouth
  • Insides of the cheeks
  • Back of the mouth
  • Tongue
  • Salivary glands
  • Gums

Some of the most common symptoms include:

  • Painful lesions that won’t heal
  • Lumps or growths
  • White or red patches inside the mouth
  • Pain or difficulty swallowing
  • Numbness in the lower lip, face, neck or chin.

Risk factors include:

  • HPV infection
  • Heavy alcohol consumption
  • A weakened immune system
  • A family history of cancer
  • Being male

Home Remedies For Mouth Pain

  • Take an over the counter painkiller like ibuprofen or paracetamol.
  • Make a saltwater rinse.
  • Apply ice.
  • Avoid spicy, acidic or salty foods.
  • Drink more fluids.
  • Avoid smoking.
  • Brush and floss your teeth gently.

For more information on other causes of mouth pain, click here.

If your mouth pain doesn’t subside with over the counter medication, call us on 01723 670500 for advice.

What To Expect At A Dental Check-Up

Some patients find it difficult to come to the dentist, but by knowing ahead of time what to expect, it can help to calm your nerves.

Arriving At The Practice

When you first arrive at Newby Dental Practice, you will be welcomed by our friendly receptionist team into our relaxing waiting room. You may be asked to fill in a medical form.

During Your Check-Up

Once it’s time for your check up, you’ll be take through to the dental surgery. They will start with a quick chat to answer any questions or concerns you might have. This will allow your dentist to thoroughly check your mouth, whilst keeping a close eye on anything that has been bothering you. You should let your dentist know if you have been experiencing any pain, sensitivity or unusual sensations and they can advise you on any treatment that you might require.

During the check-up, you’ll be asked to lie back comfortably in the chair so that the dentist can begin a thorough check of your teeth, gums and mouth. They are checking for plaque, gum disease, tooth decay and the early signs of mouth cancer. Your dentist may also take an x-ray to check for any underlying problems.

Once the check-up has been completed, your dentist will advise you of any treatment that you might require and let you know when you will need another appointment. Our reception team will then get them booked for you.

If you need to book your next check-up, call us on 01723 670500.

What Are The Most Common Dental Issues And How To Prevent Them? Continued.

Following on from the previous post, here are some more common dental problems that people suffer with and how to treat them.

Cracked Or Broken Teeth

Teeth can crack for many reasons such as:

  • Pressure from grinding your teeth.
  • Large fillings that have weakened the tooth.
  • Chewing or biting hard foods such as ice, nuts, or boiled sweets.
  • Injury.
  • Age.

Treatment depends on the size of the crack, where it is, and your symptoms. Your dentist may recommend one of the following:

  • Bonding: Using a plastic resin to fill the crack.
  • Crown: A dental crown is a cap placed over the damaged tooth.
  • Root canal: When a crack is so large that it extends into your pulp, your dentist may recommend a root canal to remove the damaged pulp. This will help to prevent the tooth from becoming weaker.
  • Extraction: If the tooth, and the nerves below it are so damaged, the only option may be to remove it.
  • No treatment: If the cracked tooth isn’t affecting your appearance and isn’t causing any pain, your dentist may advise leaving it alone.

Receding Gums

Receding gums are a condition in which your gums pull back from your teeth, exposing the root surfaces. They can be caused by a number of factors, including:

  • Aggressive brushing over a long period of time.
  • Build up of hardened plaque.
  • Smoking.
  • Family history of gum disease.
  • Diabetes.
  • HIV.

One of the best ways to prevent receding gums is to visit your dentist regularly. Even if you don’t notice any symptoms, a dentist will be able to see the early signs of gum disease. You can also help to prevent gum problems by practicing good oral hygiene, by brushing twice daily and flossing once a day.

Dry Mouth

Dry mouth happens when the salivary glands don’t produce enough saliva. This causes a dry feeling in your mouth. It can also cause bad breath, dry throat and cracked lips.

The causes include:

  • Dehydration: This can be caused by not drinking enough water, vomiting, or sweating. When you’re dehydrated your mouth produces less saliva.
  • Medications: Dry mouth could be a side effect of certain medications, including those that treat anxiety, depression, diarrhoea, high blood pressure and asthma. It is important that you don’t stop taking these medications until you have spoken to your doctor.
  • Radiation therapy: Dry mouth is a common side effect of radiation to the head and neck. Radiation causes damage to the salivary glands causing them to produce less saliva.
  • Stress: When you’re anxious, your body makes more cortisol which changes the composition of your saliva.
  • Snoring and mouth breathing: Breathing through your mouth causes saliva to evaporate.
  • Smoking: Smoking can reduce the production of tobacco.

Teeth Grinding

Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, is often stress related. It can be caused by:

  • Stress and anxiety.
  • Sleeping problems like snoring and sleep apnoea.
  • Taking certain medications.
  • Smoking, drinking lots of alcohol and caffeine.

To prevent teeth grinding:

  • Find ways to relax. Try breathing exercises or doing something that you enjoy like listening to music or doing exercise.
  • Try to improve your sleep by developing a routine of going to bed at the same time every night.
  • Have regular dental check-ups.
  • Ask your dentist if they think a nightguard would help.

Why You Should Drink Water To Help Your Teeth

We all know that there are numerous health benefits to drinking water, but did you know that it’s also good for your teeth?

1. Strengthens Your Teeth

Some areas in the Uk have a water supply that naturally contains fluoride and in other areas it is added to the water. So by just drinking tap water, you are helping to strengthen your teeth. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that helps to keep your teeth strong and prevent tooth decay.

2. Keeps Your Mouth Clean

Throughout the day, as you eat, the sugars get stuck to your teeth. The bacteria in your plaque break down the sugar to form acids which can wear away the enamel on your teeth. To protect your teeth, drink a glass of water after you eat to help wash away any remaining sugar.

3. Keeps Your Mouth Hydrated

Not only does a dry mouth feel horrible, a lack of saliva can leave your teeth vulnerable to acid attacks. Saliva is 99% water so keeping hydrated will ensure that your mouth produces enough saliva. Your saliva washes away left over foods and keeps your teeth strong by washing them with calcium, phosphate and fluoride.

4. Its Sugar Free

Unlike other drinks, water is sugar and calorie free. Even drinks that are advertised as healthy can be full of sugar, so swap these for water to help protect your teeth from acid attacks. Avoid fizzy drinks completely, as even the diet versions contain acid which can erode your enamel, weakening your teeth.

How To Deal With Issues With Your Dental Crown

Although issues with dental crowns are rare, they do still occur. You should arrange an appointment with your dentist, but in the meantime there are things that you can do to minimize the discomfort.

Consistently Rinse Your Mouth With Saltwater

One cause of discomfort can be when bacteria finds its way inside the dental crown. This could occur as a result of damage, the crown becoming loose, or a number of other issues. The best way to relieve discomfort until your dental appointment is to keep the crown as clean as possible. Simply use a saltwater rinse several times a day and avoid eating any foods that contain high levels of sugar.

Apply A Cold Compress

Another problem caused by bacteria entering the crown includes swelling of the gums and irritation of the tooth’s root. One way to ease the pain is to apply a cold compress to the affected area. Hold the compress for fifteen to thirty minutes to keep the swelling down.

When Is It Considered An Emergency?

Every instance of a dental crown issue requires punctual care which may include repositioning or replacing the crown. However, the issue becomes a dental emergency when the pain becomes intolerable and treatment can’t wait until the next day. This may be due the the development of an infection.

If you are concerned and your dental crown is causing you discomfort, please call us on 01723 670500 for advice.

6 Fun Ways To Teach Your Child To Brush Their Teeth

You can begin introducing an oral hygiene routine a few days after birth. Use a clean, wet gauze or washcloth to gently wipe their gums after feedings. As soon as their first tooth erupts, it’s time to begin brushing using a small soft toothbrush twice a day. You should brush your child’s teeth until you feel that they can brush on their own. Every child will be ready at a different age but most can brush by the time they are in preschool. At that time, you should supervise to make sure they use the right amount of toothpaste and following up any places they might have missed.

However, It may be difficult to get your child to brush their teeth when they reach the stage of being able to do it themselves. Follow our tips to find out how to make them enjoy implementing an oral hygiene routine.

Make It A Family Activity

Setting an example for you children is one of the best ways to get them to enjoy brushing their teeth. By brushing your teeth at the same time, you are giving your child a fun, family activity to look forward to everyday. Brush and floss at least twice daily with your children, including once before bedtime. This routine will help to form consistency that they will carry with them into their later life.

Find Fun Dental Education Resources

Read age-appropriate books or watch videos about dental hygiene with your child. Your child will enjoy the time spent together but also they might find it interesting to learn about the importance of their oral health, especially if their parents are interested too.

Use A Special Toothbrush

It is likely that your child will enjoy brushing their teeth more if they can use a special toothbrush of their choosing. As adults, it can be easy to forget the effect of incorporating toys into everyday life.

Create A Tooth brushing Competition

To make tooth brushing more fun, make it a game and set a timer for two minutes. The winner must brush their teeth for two minutes without stopping. This will create a friendly competition and encourage your children to brush their teeth properly.

Reward Tooth Brushing

To encourage your children to brush their teeth twice a day, use a simple rewards system. Start with small rewards, such as a gold star, and award it for the basic necessity, brushing twice a day. Then, award a larger reward for every 10 gold stars. This will make your child motivated to brush their teeth.

Make A Trip To The Dentist A Fun Visit

Make sure that your child understands that a trip to the dentist can be a reward for them keeping their teeth clean, and not a negative outcome for not brushing and flossing. Parents can pass on their fear of the dentist to their children by simply talking about it in a negative tone. Try to avoid this. If you are anxious about a trip to the dentist, try to talk about it in a neutral tone.

Creating a fun routine a home from an early age will ensure that your child develops the habit of caring for their teeth.