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Is modern medicine changing our views on dentistry?

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Modern dental surgeries are bright and appealing places designed to put the patient at ease. A recent article in The Guardian revealed that scientists have even developed a pain-free filling technique which should cut down on the traditional fears associated with a visit to the dentist.

Healthy and hygienic

When visiting a contemporary dental surgery you can expect to find sterile equipment, bright lights and a comforting atmosphere. To see evidence of the range of sterile gloves used by modern dentists, just visit this website to allay any fears you may have about potential transference of infection. The introduction of 21st century science to traditional dental solution is an added bonus.

Theory over practice

So, in theory all UK citizens should have perfect teeth and be happy to attend the dentist for regular checkups and treatment. In practice this isn’t the case. Despite the introduction of Electrically Accelerated and Enhanced Remineralisation (REAR) and other techniques for treating decaying teeth, many Brits try to avoid a trip to the dentist by carrying out their own fillings, often with disastrous results.

One of the reasons behind this practice isn’t fear of pain but due to restricted family budgets. Dental care is available on the NHS but very few people qualify for free dentistry. This article suggests that finance rather than fear of dentists is why there is a boom in ‘do it yourself’ dentistry.

It’s not all implants

With an increasingly large number of glossy white artificial smiles gazing out at the general public from TV screens and films anyone would be forgiven for thinking that British dentistry was in great shape. Cosmetic dentistry is expensive. DIY teeth whiteners can look bizarre, but there are changes ahead in the field of regenerative dentistry. There have even been successful tests in the USA where rats have developed regenerated teeth as a result of low powered laser treatment. Clinical trials on this process for humans are expected to start in 2016.

The modern dentist is not a barber surgeon

Dentists do suffer from bad PR. Despite the obvious fact that modern dentists do not use pliers to extract teeth – of course, they haven’t for well over a century – most members of the public still fear a trip to the surgery!

Advances in modern anaesthetics and diamond tipped dental drills and other innovations mean that a visit to the dentist nowadays will be pain free. Sadly, many people are still scared of the dentist and won’t visit a clinic until their tooth has well and truly decayed and is beyond rescue. Some experts believe that part of the problem of the public’s perception of dentists is that we simply don’t like people playing about with our mouths, however professional their approach.

With the introduction of fluoride to UK water and various publicity campaigns encouraging people to floss and clean their teeth regularly, then the nation’s teeth should be decay free. This fact alone should mean that regular trips to the dentist will be seen as a positive move rather than instilling a feeling of dread in the hearts of the populace.