Following the announcement at the weekend that we are to enter a further period of national lockdown from 5th November, we would like to reassure our patients that there are no plans to close dental practices and we will remain open as usual. Dentistry is classed as a medical service and as such you may travel to appointments.
We have not yet returned to a "normal" service as we continue to have restricted capacity whilst we operate a COVID-safe environment, and prioritise those patients with acute dental problems.
Please continue to contact us by telephone on 0191 5262589 if you require advice or an appointment.
The Government announced on 28th May that Dental Practices can commence re-opening from 8th June.
We are looking forward to reopening and welcoming patients back to the surgery.
We have been working hard during the lockdown period to ensure that we can provide a safe service for our patients, whilst maintaining a safe working environment for our staff.
When we re-open, it will not be "business as usual" as the current requirements for social distancing and advanced PPE will greatly reduce the number of patients we can see each day and the types of procedures we carry out.
We will be prioritising patients so we can help those who need us most first, so please bear with us during this period. For those patients who we have had to cancel appointments for, or who have contacted us with problems during the lockdown period, we will be in touch.
Please bear in mind that although we are reopening for face to face care on 8th June, at this stage:
We would like to thank you for your continued support, patience and understanding during this difficult period.We look forward to continuing to care for your oral health and to a time when we can return to our normal routine.
John & Victoria Gamon - Partners
On behalf of all the team at Hetton Dental Practice
Please find below links to three important documents which you should look at prior to your appointment
1. Pre-appointment information - includes what to expect when you attend for your appointment during the COVID 19 pandemic
2. Medical history form- please read and if you wish complete in advance of your appointment, we will go through this with you in the surgery. It is particularly important to bring details of any medications you may be taking
3. NHS PR form- this document is one that is usually signed by all NHS patients prior to their appointments to confirm you accept the conditions of NHS treatment and if you have an exemption from charges, to confirm what this is. During the pandemic to reduce risk of cross infection we will be signing this form on your behalf electronically once you have confirmed any exemption and that you are happy for us to do so.
If you are self isolating and unable to leave the house then the last thing you want is to develop toothache. If you are not able to see us, there are a few things you can try to manage the pain until you can. It is unclear at this point when normal service will resume. If you have a swelling on your face or difficulty swallowing, this requires urgent professional attention so don't be afraid to contact us for advice.
Pain from teeth
Decay is a bacterial infection of a tooth. If the bacteria gets close to the nerve in a tooth, it can cause the tooth to be acutely sensitive. As the infection causing inflammation of the nerve gets worse, the ligaments holding the tooth in position can also get inflamed which causes pain on biting.
If the tooth is acutely sensitive to temperature, antibiotics will not fix this. The decay needs to be removed to allow the tooth to heal. If the bacteria has caused irreversible damage to the nerve in the tooth then a root filling is required or the tooth needs to be extracted.
To help manage toothache until you can visit us, there are a few things that may help reduce the pain
If there is a cavity in the tooth, a temporary filling material can be packed in to this space. These temporary filling kits are widely available from supermarkets or pharmacies.
Anti-inflammatory tablets (NSAIDs) can reduce the sensitivity. A combination of ibuprofen and paracetamol has been found to be beneficial if you can take them both - however, there are some reports that Ibuprofen may increase the symptoms of COVID-19 so Paracetamol alone is probably best if you have symptoms.Make sure you don't exceed the recommended dosage!
Don't stop taking the anti-inflammatory when the pain stops (or it will come back again!) You are wanting to reduce the inflammation of the nerve in the tooth which is causing the pain.
Desensitising toothpaste such as Sensodyne repair and protect or Colgate sensitive pro relief can help.
Anaesthetic gel such as Orajel applied to the area can help to numb the pain.
Clove Oil - This essential oil can be found in health food stores and you can apply it onto the painful tooth with a cotton bud. This works well if there is an exposed nerve due to deep decay but for it to work, you need to place it onto the exposed nerve
Keep your head elevated at night time- When you lie down to go to sleep, the blood pressure in the tooth can increase which increases pain. An extra pillow at night time can help
Keep the area cold- reducing blood flow to an area will reduce the inflammation and pain. Do not apply ice directly to a tooth as this can increase the pain as toothaches are quite sensitive to hot and cold temperatures.
If there is an infection - a swelling next to the tooth or pus discharging;
Rinse your mouth with warm salty mouthwash to try and draw out the infection into your mouth. Dissolve a spoonful of sea salt in warm water and rinse around your mouth/ hold it in your mouth next to the infected area. Repeat several times until the pain subsides.
Never put heat externally on your face as this can draw the infection into the tissues in your face causing external swellings.
Pain from gums
If there is bacteria or food debris trapped between the gum and the tooth, this can cause pain.
Thoroughly clean the area with floss or a te-pe interdental brush. You could put corsodyl gel onto the brush to help clean the area
Rinse thoroughly with Corsodyl mouthwash can help (but Corsodyl will stain your teeth so we dont recommend this for long term use)
Pain from ulcers
Mouth ulcers can be a sign of underlying medical conditions such as iron deficiency so shouldn't be ignored. Any mouth ulcer which doesn't heal in two weeks should be checked by a dentist.
To reduce the discomfort, you can try a topical ansesthetic gel such as Orajel
To help with healing of ulcers, Gengigel can be effective as well as soothing the pain.
If a tooth or filling has chipped or cracked, this can cause sensitivity from the tooth being exposed or pain to your tongue from sharp edges.
The sensitivity can be reduced by rubbing a de-sensitising toothpaste onto the tooth or placing a temporary filling material over the broken corner until a more definitive filling can be placed.
We are a long established Dental Practice in the small town of Hetton-le-Hole between Sunderland and Durham. Our aim is to provide dental care and treatment of a high standard in a friendly and caring manner.
Nothing is more beautiful than a healthy smile. It looks great to those around you and makes you feel good. The team at our practice do everything possible to make your teeth the best they can be and keep them healthy in the long term.
Why not see what we can do for you?
About the practice
Our practice has three surgeries and is located in a mid-terrace building close to the centre of the town of Hetton-le-Hole
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For healthy teeth that last a lifetime: we offer a wide range of dental services.
We provide both NHS and private dental care.
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