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  1. Say Aaaaargh! Changing the tone of modern dentistry

    September 20, 2017

    A patient recently brought this newspaper picture in to the practice. We all laughed and it made me think about how Dentistry has changed in general and at Helens Bay in particular. I have been in practice here for 23 years in October and love the changes we can offer patients and the tools at our disposal.

    The rate of change has quickened in the last 5 years as the digital revolution gathers pace.

    For the last 10 years we have been able to image a tooth and construct a crown in a few hours allowing smiles to be restored in a single visit.

    This years latest technology has advanced to imaging multiple teeth to make bridges, crowns, veneers and crowns for implants. More same day solutions to resolve smile issues.

    We don’t need sticky impressions for this work! Accurate digital images capture all the information we need.

    To allow placement of implants with greater accuracy we can make a virtual guide, digitally imaged and manufactured in-house.

    For patients undergoing orthodontic treatment no impressions are necessary the camera captures all the information we need with accuracy and clarity.

    Last week, a patient was referred to me with both upper front teeth damaged beyond repair to see what his options were. The good news for him was that because of our imaging technology his options are much superior to this time last year in terms of speed of outcome.

    We removed the broken teeth and then placed an implant into each tooth socket.

    We digitally scanned the implants and designed two crowns on the computer screen and milled them.

    When ready and polished we screwed them onto the implants and in 3 hours we gave him back his smile. I was almost as delighted as the patient.

    When I started in Helens bay I couldn’t have foreseen what my daily workflow was going to be but it fills me with enthusiasm for the future anticipating what I may be doing next.


  2. 7 things you may not know about Helens Bay Dental

    May 19, 2017

    1. Gareth Small and Sarah Lochhead have a combined 34 years of providing dental solutions at Helens Bay
    2. We offer the latest Digital solutions in Dentistry across all treatments- faster treatment, beautiful predictable results and smiles that last! We have provided 3800 same day crowns in the last 10 years
    3. We have an in house Implant team who have placed 1800 implants in Helens Bay
    4. We have an in house Short term straightening team who have improved smiles for 200 people so far. Digital techniques at the practice can eliminate the need for sticky impressions!
    5. We have a dedicated, caring Nursing and Reception team who will book you in with your own treatment provider for all your visits because they know what you like.
    6. We are accepting new patients! If this sounds like the service you would like for you and your family call in and see us!
    7. Our hygiene care is lead by Lorraine Dunlop, Dental Therapist and we call her our Children’s treatment champion

  3. London Digital Symposium

    May 8, 2017


  4. Six Month Smiles – Mark’s Story

    April 27, 2017


  5. An implant story – Mike


  6. Who wants Digital Dentistry? I thought I knew!

    April 7, 2017

    The recent advances in Digital Dentistry have been developed by technicians, observed by many dentists and adopted by few. I embraced the technical revolution and have been offering digital imaging and Same Day Crowns for 12 years. Not because my patients were asking for it but because I was interested and the techniques were challenging and gave wonderful predictable outcomes ie crowns!

    Now in 2017 we are being sought out because we offer these techniques.

    Busy people want single visit results and not temporary solutions.
    ‘I can only get out of work once next week I cant make multiple appointments”

    Nervous patients who fear multiple injections and gagging with impression trays want to sit back and let the camera do the work.
    ‘ I would highly recommend the surgery for anyone that has gagging issues or feels uncomfortable with objects in their mouth”

    Existing patients expect the latest technology and a fast reliable guaranteed outcome…
    ” I have a wedding next week will you be able to fix my tooth by then?”

    The world of Dental development is driven by big companies and slowly adopted by Dentists in practice but now that patients are seeking us out based on our ability to provide the treatments we are confidently moving onto the next level!

    Watch this space for news!


  7. Short Term Orthodontics – Emily’s Story

    March 6, 2017


  8. Amazon Drones & Dentistry

    January 17, 2017

    Many of the Helens Bay patients will already know that my daughter Emily is currently studying Dental Therapy at Queen Mary University of London.

    Like many students of the practice we are able to continue to provide dental care at a distance however when Emily called me to say that her wisdom tooth was starting to give pain I was only able to offer advice.

    The advantage of training in a dental school was that she was able see a dentist and the recommendation was to have the tooth removed.

    This was going to be Emily’s first experience of dentistry apart from orthodontics.

    The wisdom tooth was difficult to remove but Emily was brave and was glad to see it gone now we just had to deal the aftermath!

    The pain was building as evening approached, Emily was finding it very challenging and the phone lines were red hot. It was at 9.30pm that it struck me that following multiple implant placement and difficult surgical procedures we normally provide a Tens device for patients to manage their discomfort.

    One slight problem…the Tens devices were in Helens Bay and Emily was in East London.

    A lightening bolt of inspiration struck…

    Are Tens devices on Amazon ?

    A quick search on my iPhone yielded good news! And for an extra £5 they could be delivered within the hour.

    Thoughts of a drone flying into Emily’s flat were conjured up.

    Device ordered at 9.40pm, in Emily’s hand at10.09pm and on her face at 10.10pm!

    Delivery time 29 minutes which was amazing and within 10 minutes Emily was feeling the benefit and got a good nights sleep.

    So a combination of technology and first class delivery service from Amazon gave us a happy outcome and a smooth recovery for our extra special patient. We like to think we go the extra mile for all our patients but this was a first in delivering the extra care to a different city.


  9. Don’t you do injections anymore?

    November 21, 2016

    blog2At Helens Bay we are often reminded by patients that a concern they have about proposed Dental treatment is a dislike of dental injections

    We have such a great new system that last week a patient asked had we stopped using injections!

    In 1997 Milestone Scientific launched a computerized anaesthetic device in the UK and I attended the event. I wanted to see what this could do for my patients to improve the quality of their dental experience. Prior to this not much had changed in 150 years!

    blog1This game-changing device used a microprocessor to slow the delivery of Dental anaesthetic and minimize discomfort. So I bought it and have used it ever since

    Last month at Helens Bay Dental we took delivery of the newest version of this device, which allows us to numb our patients in an even more comfortable way… hence the comment “ have you stopped using injections?”

    The best road testers of this device are the Helens Bay team and they wouldn’t dream of having a regular dental anaesthetic and needle.

    Patients are so surprised as the new system talks to the Dentist as the anaesthetic is delivered and everyone agrees it is a significant improvement


  10. You’re not alone – We can help!

    July 6, 2016

    At Helens Bay we have been placing and restoring dental implants since the year 2000.  Gareth, Lidia and Sarah work as a team with the help of the hygiene department and our very experienced dental nurses and treatment coordinator.  Between Lidia, Gareth and Sarah they have over 80 years of experience in delivering private dentistry.  Lidia has been placing implants for over 20 years and has placed over 6000 implants at Helens Bay.  We have placed and restored just under 2000 dental implants since the year 2000.

    Lidia and Gareth have travelled extensively to attend training courses both in surgical and restorative areas.  They have also both trained and mentored dentists in Ireland on placing implants from Biomet 3i and Nobel Biocare.

    We provide a 10 year guarantee on the implant and five years on the restoration. At Helens Bay we have a Cone Beam CT scanner to enable the planning of implants and also we can use Cerec technology in some cases to design and fabricate the crown.  In 2012 we attended the Malo clinic in Portugal and were trained in the All on 4 technique – this means a patient can have their unrestorable teeth removed, implants placed and a batch of replacement teeth constructed within 24 ours to allow the patient to have a new set of teeth fitted to bring back their smile.