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Dentists may have extracted thousands of teeth unnecessarily



An investigation into NHS dental treatment has revealed that many dentists could have unnecessarily chosen to extract thousands of teeth simply because it is a faster and simpler procedure than trying to restore the tooth using a filling or root canal treatment.

According to The Times, dentists are earning more money by treating a greater number of patients on a daily basis, which would not be possible if they opted for more complicated treatments, instead of just pulling out bad teeth. Reforms introduced in 2006 meant that dentists are paid per ‘Unit of Dental Activity (UDA)’, with regular check-ups counting for one unit and root canals for three – although root canals take at least twice as long as an extraction.

Mike Waplington, president of the British Endodontic Society, said that the  number of root canal treatments had dropped by half, whilst extractions were up by a fifth following the new rules of treatment. He said that there is an ‘incentive’ for dentists to extract the teeth rather than treat them with a longer procedure that does not benefit them as well financially. He added that this system could ‘have affected tens of thousands of teeth.’


Puppy has a 3D-printed tooth fitted

 A puppy that became depressed after a damaged tooth made it painful for her to eat has been given a new lease on life after her broken front tooth was replaced with one that was built using a 3D printer. Hanna, a 15-month-old Labrador retriever broke her tooth chewing on a bone and the pain of the injury prevented her from eating, according to MailOnline.

Thanks to a team of Brazilian dentists, Hanna can now eat normally and is getting back to her old self after they built her a tooth using the newest forms of 3D printing technology. The team of dentists and scientists from the University of Santos created the tooth by making a mould of the dogs jaw and then producing a digital prosthetic.

3D design specialist, Cicero Moraes, said that the new tooth would be ‘tougher’ than the natural tooth and added that this was the smallest thing he had so far designed using this cutting edge technique. Dentist Roberto Fecchio said that Hanna recovered very quickly and before long she was back to her normal routine. However, he added that she should avoid putting too much pressure onto the new tooth because a root canal filling had to be carried out on what was left of the tooth, which can leave it vulnerable to damage.


Bradford dentist to travel to Morocco to offer treatment to children



A dentist from Bradford is set to travel to Morocco later this month to help children that have no access to dental treatment. Carl Taylor, 37, is principle dentist at Taylored Dental Care, and he is to travel with a group of dentists who aim to help improve dental health in rural areas of the country.

The dentists are travelling with the Dental Mavericks charity and they will pay for travel themselves, as well as offering their services free of charge. Dr Taylor explained to the Telegraph and Argus that many children are in ‘great need’ of quality dental services as they live a long way outside cities and towns where clinics are situated. He said that it is ‘heartbreaking’ to think of children with easily treatable conditions that are suffering pain and inflammation as a result of lack of treatment.

Dr Taylor is hoping to treat at least twenty children per day while he is in Morocco, mainly in remote areas located in the foothills of the High Atlas Mountains, many miles outside of Marrakech, where treatment would be more readily available. Co-founder of the charity, Cally Gedge, said that this is lifesaving work which aims to prevent less serious conditions, such as decay, from deteriorating to the point of septicaemia, which can be fatal if left untreated.



Joey Essex posts pictures following dental surgery




Joey Essex is not known for his brains, but the 25-year-old former TOWIE regular is now claiming that having his wisdom teeth removed has actually made him smarter. Joey posted several pictures on Instagram before and after his dental surgery, which involved the removal of all four wisdom teeth.

Joey took a selfie of him wearing a chilling face mask after the teeth were removed – designed to reduced pain and swelling after the extractions – and added the caption ‘Good morning everyone !!! Since having my wisdom teeth taken out… I’m sure iv started to become even more cleverer !!! No joke [sic].’

He also posted a picture of himself recovering in bed after the operation, alongside his dental team, with a caption thanking all of his followers for their well-wishes. He captioned the snap ‘Lots of love out there for the fans. Love you all. Appreciate your support on my journeys I always do thank you !!’ It wasn’t just the dentists taking care of the reality star though, his Nan popped in to check on him and even brought Cup A Soup to cheer her grandson up. Joey posted a picture of the two, with the caption ‘My nanny always looks after me.’


Dentists in India find link between obesity and tooth decay



Researchers in India are suggesting that they have discovered a strong link between childhood obesity and tooth decay. Dentists at the Dental Council of India (DCI) said that it would be working with the Union Ministry of Health in the country to try and combat the two problems together.

Obesity among children in India is on the rise and as a result the number of children with tooth decay has also risen sharply in recent years. DCI member Dr AK Chandna spoke to Indiatoday, saying that dentists in the country have been carrying out ‘major studies’ on the problem and the link between the two conditions, the results of which are currently being compiled. As well as poor diets leading to weigh gain and tooth decay, obese children are vulnerable to cavities due to ‘ineffective chewing’ resulting from a reduction in physical activity.

He added that the sugar intake of children in the age-group of 5-12 is very high, which is obviously linked to decay. He said that other countries, such as China, were already taking action with similar problems by limiting the sale of sugar to the general public. Dr Chandna added that the DCI is ‘working in this direction’ and was planning to ‘reach out to the health ministry for taking an appropriate step.’



Dentists say the Government is failing NHS patients


As the pressure for dentist to take on new patients increases, dental professionals are questioning government policies on payment and patient registration, with one dentist saying that the system is failing NHS patients. One in three NHS dentists in England is refusing to take on new NHS patients and patients are facing a waiting list of up to nine months for those surgeries that are taking on new patients.

Dr Nigel Carter, chief executive of the British Dental Health Foundation, said that the issues needed to be addressed ‘imminently’ or ‘we are going to see a repeat of queues round the block if somebody does manage to open a new NHS surgery.’ He added that ‘dentists would like to be doing more NHS work but are unable to because they’re unable to get the contracts to do it.’

According to NHS regulations, dentists have to be clear about their availability and should not require NHS registration before a patient can get treatment. A spokesperson for the Department of Health said ‘It is not acceptable for dentists to mislead patients about their services. Practices need to be clear on whether they accept new patients, the length of their waiting lists and charges.’

Kanye West cites dentists visit for change in attitude


Kanye West has spoken to Paper magazine about his life and music career, and fans might be surprised to find that his outlook on life was changed by something as simple as a trip to the dentist. The 37-year-old said that he was ‘vibing out’ on nitrous oxide during one visit to the dentist and he cites this as bringing his life into focus.

He told the publication that this was his ‘version of Steve Jobs and his LSD trip’ and he found himself asking questions such as ‘what is the meaning of life?’. The rapper seems to have found the answer and he isn’t afraid to share it, he says ‘Then I thought; to give. What’s the key to happiness? Happiness. What do you want in life? When you give someone something, should they give you something in return? No. We don’t have to expect to be compensated by the person we give to. Just give.’

Whilst still under the influence of the gas, Kanye realised ‘it doesn’t even matter if I’m remembered’ and following the experience he found that he ‘had a completely new attitude on everything.’ Although he sometimes makes headlines for his outspoken ways, the father-of-one insists that all he’s trying to say is ‘Help me to help more! I’ve given all I’ve got.’

Demand for cosmetic dentistry fuels spending at UK dentists


As more and more people seek the perfect smile, dentists are enjoying a boom in business in the UK; experts estimate that turnover could have increased by almost a quarter over the past four years. Cosmetic dentistry at the 100 largest firms in the country reached almost a billion pounds last year, with an average figure of £10million for each surgery.

Peter Alderson, managing director of finance company LDF, said that the British people have embraced cosmetic dental treatments, such as whitening and orthodontics, which is reflected in the incomes at the country’s top dental surgeons. Mr Alderson added ‘Increasing numbers of dental patients are… willing to pay significant amounts of money for cutting-edge services, especially if they are delivered in a more exclusive, private clinic-style environment.’ He went on to say that, thanks to investments in new equipment, such as the latest IT systems, surgeries are able to bring new patients in for various modern treatments. Although this is expensive for most practices, it seems to have paid off if the latest numbers are anything to go by.

Official figures suggest that 200 dentists in England earn over £300,000 a year by doing a mixture of private and NHS dental work. The figures on private dental work only are not currently available and are not thought to be published.

Dentist warn against DIY orthodontic treatment


There are many videos on the internet showing people who have supposedly straightened their teeth using DIY methods instead of going to see an orthodontist, but dentists are warning against this practice as it could lead to permanent tooth damage and possibly even tooth loss later on.

A woman from Washington State has more than 100,000 views on YouTube as she explains how she used elastic hair bands to bring her two front teeth together to close up a large gap in just 44 days. Although she is happy with the result, a New Jersey dentist has spoken to abcnews about the dangers of such practices; Dr Joseph Banker warned that moving the teeth too quickly can lead to root resorption, which may cause the teeth to become unstable and could even lead to tooth loss.

The American Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics have also weighed in on the debate, saying that the rubber bands could slip under the gum line and it becomes extremely difficult ‘if not impossible’ to remove them and avoid infection. In a statement, the dental body explained that ‘the teeth extrude, the crowns fan out as the roots are pulled together, the teeth become increasingly mobile, and then they might just fall out.’

Sharon Osbourne says that British people have ‘fugly’ teeth


TV presenter Sharon Osbourne has spoken about the state of British teeth on her daytime show The Talk, blaming the problems on a lack of dentists in the country. The reality star called British teeth ‘fugly’ meaning they are extremely unappealing to look at.

Sharon joked that ‘there is only one dentist in England’ and no one can find him, so everyone in the country has ‘fugly teeth’. The 62-year-old made the comments as she discussed her own dental condition, recalling how her dental implant came out on live television last year – she blamed the dental damage on poor restorative work. Sharon tried to stick the tooth back in with superglue during a commercial break for the show but it didn’t work and the presenter was left without a tooth for the remainder of the broadcast. She joked ‘as if nobody my age has a tooth that doesn’t come out?’

The dental problem surfaced after only a few weeks with the implant, and Sharon explained ‘I am sat there two weeks later on the show and I can feel grit in my mouth, and I thought what had I eaten. And then I realised it was big bits of grit and then the tooth is waggling, and I am like ‘oh my Lord – right on air.’

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