Update from your Dental Team at St. Paul’s Dental Practice.

To our valued patients,

Although COVID 19 still has a firm grip on our lives, during this Lockdown we have been able to remain OPEN because of the extensive special measures we have in place, the details of which can be found on our website.

We remain committed to maintaining a safe environment for our staff and all our patients that need to attend for an appointment.

Our priority is to see anyone with a dental problem, so if you have any concerns please don’t hesitate to contact us.

For safety reasons we are continuing to limit the number of people within the Practice at any one time. This naturally affects the number of available appointments and as a result, all routine ‘check-up’ appointments remain cancelled until the situation is much improved.

We are all too aware how long it has been since many of you were seen here and we hope to catch up with you soon. Meanwhile, remember we are the most knowledgeable professionals when it comes to looking after teeth and gums and have really good resources to share with you. We are here to answer your questions and give advice by phone, email or remote consultation and can post any dental care products to help with your daily oral care routine.

For up-to-date information please visit our Facebook page and website regularly or if you can’t find what you are looking for, contact us and your query will be directed to your Dentist, Hygienist, Oral Health Educator or Treatment Co-ordinator.

Help us to keep in touch with you by updating your contact details should they change. Contacting you by email is preferable to us. If you have not already done so, please provide us with your email address. We will only use email for the purpose of providing optimum dental healthcare and sending important Practice updates to you. You may opt out of receiving emails or texts from us, by informing us at any time.

Contacts: Phone 01626 365896

Email info@stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk

Website www.stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/stpaulsdental

We truly appreciate your patience and understanding during these difficult times and we value your feedback at any time.

We’ve come a long way this year as 2020 draws to a close!

Who could have predicted at the start of 2020 what a turmoil the COVID pandemic would throw us into? It really is unprecedented when the Government tells you to stop what you are doing, send your staff home and close your door!

When this happened on March 25th, our diary was full of patient appointments, with 3; 6; 9 and 12 monthly recalls, booked right the way through to 2021. All this went by the wayside like so many other well-laid plans and through implementing all the best practice, professional guidelines in order to safely re-open in June, it became evident that the rest of 2020 would be taken up with only seeing a fraction of our database of patients, those who needed urgent dental care!

It was extremely frustrating and demoralising for our Dentists not to be able to see anyone during the first Lockdown and have limited resources to deal with patients’ problems but I’m sure it was reassuring to you all, that there was at least a familiar voice on the end of the phone, as they shared amongst themselves the ‘on call’ responsibility each week.

For Nick, this wasn’t enough and he very quickly volunteered to assist at the Urgent Dental Care Hub in Torquay, about the only place at the time able to see patients face to face.

It is worth considering some additions to your first aid kit, should you find yourself without access to a Dentist again, maybe if travelling or working away for any length of time. Most items are available from chemists, supermarkets or online and like most things nowadays, you can even access great YouTube videos of how to apply them.

    • Temporary filling material. If you lose a filling, you want to plug the hole quickly. It’s a paste-like material that fills the hole and helps provide relief from sensitivity and harmful bacteria.
    • Dental wax. A soft material that can be used to temporarily cover sharp surfaces inside your mouth, such as broken teeth, orthodontic wires. (The wax surrounding cheese can also be useful)
    • Vaseline. To temporarily attach a crown, it’s easier to clean off than adhesives. Just fill the crown, pop it on, and the gel makes a seal that holds it temporarily in place.
    • Floss: Food stuck between teeth can definitely cause a great deal of pain and damage.
    • Nail file. Can be used to smooth over the sharp edge of a broken tooth and save your tongue, cheeks from damage and ulcers.

During the first Lockdown we dealt with 350 people in trouble and as soon as we were allowed to re-open we got to work, booking appointments for these people and catching up with all the others whose treatment had been put on hold due to COVID.

The way we operate has completely changed, with additional measures in place to keep everyone safe here at St. Paul’s, details of which can be found under ‘The patient journey during COVID 19’ https://www.stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk/routine-appointments.html

With so many restrictions in place, we have worked hard to get as many people through the door as possible since June. We have prioritised those with urgent treatment needs and those who are at risk of deteriorating oral health if not seen, covering all age ranges.

Our team has worked without a single moan or winge, despite additional working pressure, the constraints of wearing additional PPE, tighter regulations to follow and all without the usual rewards of social gatherings, team building days or even just all being able to sit down together and relax.

We were grateful to have the added support of Nichola, who joined our team in June this year and we are yet to see what she really looks like behind the mask.

Despite our best efforts, since re-opening we have only managed to see about 25% of all our patients! We are fully aware how many of you have missed out on your routine appointments and we hope with the news of vaccinations becoming available, there will be some point in the not too distant future that we will be able to open all our surgeries and recommence normal appointments.

Meanwhile, we will continue to keep in touch as best we can, by newsletters, social media, texts, emails and through our website.

In addition, Anna one of our Oral Health Educators has created some videos of oral health care advice which you can find on YouTube  https://www.youtube.com/c/StpaulsdentalpracticeUk/videos

If you want to hear from us, keep your contact details up to date and inform us if there are any changes.

Contact us by email info@stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk; our webform or phone 01626 365896. We are here to answer any dental concerns you have and see you when necessary.

Remember now more than ever how important your daily oral care routine is as well as checking regularly for any changes in your mouth, being vigilant for signs of mouth cancer. https://www.dentalhealth.org/

Don’t forget, we stock a good range of all the Dental Care Products you will need for your home routine and these can be paid for by phone and posted out to you, without the need to leave your home.

Our Christmas opening times are listed on our website and a recorded message will be available on our phones, with details of when we are there or when to call the ‘out of hours’ service. https://www.stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk/find-dentists-devon.html

We very much look forward to seeing you in 2021 and would like to wish all our valued patients a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

A reason to be cheerful.

Something to smile about.
Just to reassure you all, that despite the recent raising of the National Coronavirus alert level back to level 4, there will be no reduction in the service we are currently providing to patients.
With the measures we have in place, St Paul’s Dental Practice continues to be a safe place for all patients, staff and visitors.
We are continuing to arrange appointments for anyone requiring treatment or with any dental concerns.
We have a very long list to get through, for those we feel are particularly at risk of deteriorating oral health if not seen.
Routine examinations remain cancelled and we know this means many of you haven’t seen us in a very long time! We appreciate your patience during this time.
If you are lucky enough not to have any dental issues, please sit tight until we can restart routine appointments. Revisit our Website or Facebook page for up to date news and please continue to take good care of your mouth, teeth and gums.
Maintaining a thorough, twice daily oral care routine is essential and remember to look out for any changes or anything unusual.

We would like to emphasise that if you have any concerns, please contact us by phone 01626 365896 or email info@stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk or through our website www.stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk

Take care, stay safe.

KEEPING IN TOUCH

If you didn’t receive this latest newsletter in your personal inbox, it’s because we don’t have your email address.

KEEPING IN TOUCH

Letting you know how things are at your dental practice.

We are continuing to follow government guidelines during this Coronavirus pandemic and since 8th June, the practice has been open, albeit on a fairly limited basis, providing urgent dental care only.

During Lockdown, 350 patients contacted us in trouble and our prime concern has been, now that we can see them face to face, to resolve their dental issues as soon as possible. We have also been in touch with patients who were due to have treatment which was postponed due to COVID 19, to see them as a priority, to prevent any deterioration in their oral health. This is for those due to have treatments like fillings and root canal treatment but also those with gum disease, who benefit from regular treatment with our Hygienists.

In accordance with the guidelines from the Chief Dental Officer for England, all routine appointments remain cancelled until the pandemic alert level drops further. This is for your safety and that of our staff.

We need to keep the number of people in the building at any one time to a minimum, so we are operating a closed-door policy, utilising a reduced number of surgeries, avoiding use of the waiting room and asking you to wait in your car or make use of the garden space, until you can be escorted straight in to the surgery.

Additional measures are in place to maintain a safe environment and limit the risk of infection. The team will be wearing additional PPE; undertaking scrupulous surface cleansing; carrying out pre-appointment COVID screening; taking payments over the phone and using electronic forms/information to reduce direct contact where possible.

Our website and Facebook page are kept up to date with any practice developments but if you feel out of the loop or want to contact us with any concerns you may have, please call us 01626 365896; email us info@stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk or get in touch through the Contact us form on our website www.stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk

Whilst we are seeing a reduced volume of patients through the door and maintaining remote contact with you, it is more important than ever that we have up to date contact details such as phone numbers, mobile numbers, emails etc. If any of your details may have changed, please let us know as soon as possible.

If there is something we could do better, let us know.

However, if you are happy with the service we are providing, please let us know that too. We would appreciate a Google or Facebook review or a recommendation to friends and family.

Stay safe: Stay alert:

Best wishes from us

St. Paul’s Dental Practice

Your dedicated dental professionals

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What to expect when attending an appointment at St. Paul’s Dental Practice during COVID-19

If you have phoned with a dental problem and been asked to attend the Practice, this is what to expect:

* You will be contacted the day before your appointment where possible and asked a series of questions relating to any medical conditions you have and to screen for any signs and symptoms of COVID 19. This is to avoid using paper forms within the surgery.
* You will be asked to come alone, if at all possible. To limit the number of people in the Practice.
* You will be asked not to bring any personal belongings if possible as bags and coats are difficult items to sanitise.
* We will ask for payment for your appointment over the phone, to reduce the need for handling cash or the card machine at the Practice.
*The front door will be closed.
* You will be asked to either remain outside until we phone you to let you know we are ready for you or you will have been given a number to phone to let us know you have arrived. If you do not have a phone, please arrive at your appointment time and knock on the front door.
* The door will be opened by a member of our team, who will be dressed in full Personal Protective Equipment. This is for us to keep the Practice as clean an environment as possible, whilst also ensuring you experience a safe journey throughout your visit.
* Before entering the building, you will be asked to use a hand sanitiser provided for you.                                                                                                                                        * Social distancing will be maintained at all times within the Practice, please keep
a distance of 2 metres from any other visitors.
* Access to other areas of the building such as the waiting room and toilet will be restricted, to maintain our strict infection control measures.
* You will be escorted directly to and from the surgery for your dental treatment.

If any of the following apply:

  • you are in the extremely vulnerable category
  • have a confirmed case of COVID-19 or are self-isolating with COVID-19 symptoms or live in the same household as someone with COVID-19 symptoms
  • unable to attend the Practice

We will refer you to an appropriate service for your treatment needs.

We continue to take the safety of our patients and staff very seriously and adhere to current best practice professional guidelines. These additional measures outlined above, have been put in place to maintain our high standard of cross infection control and to ensure the safety of everyone attending the Practice.

For further advice or if you have a dental problem, please do not hesitate to contact us:

Tel: 01626 365896                                                                                                                Email: info@stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk                                                                            Web: www.stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk

Dear valued patient

 

Dear valued patient,

We hope this letter finds you and your family in good health. We have all been through a lot over the last few months, and all of us are looking forward to resuming our normal habits and routines. While many things have changed, one thing has remained the same: our commitment to your safety.

Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice and you may have seen this during your visits. Our infection control processes are made so that when you receive care, it’s both safe and comfortable.

We follow infection control recommendations made by the Department of Health; Public Health England; The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence; NHS and other professional bodies, so that we are up-to-date on any new rulings or guidance that may be issued.

You may see some changes when it is time for your next appointment. We have made these changes to help protect our patients and staff. For example:

  • The practice front door will remain closed.
  • Your team will be wearing additional personal protective equipment.
  • Our team will communicate with you before your appointment to ask some screening questions.
  • We have hand sanitizer that we will ask you to use when you enter the practice. You will also find it in other places in the practice for you to use as needed.
  • Access to the waiting area will be avoided. We request that you remain outside of the building until we are ready to start your appointment, at which point you will be informed by phone and met at the front door by a member of the team.
  • Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. That might mean that you are offered fewer options for scheduling your appointment or your appointment may be scheduled outside of our normal working hours.
  • We will do our best to allow greater time between patients to reduce waiting times for you, as well as to reduce the number of patients in the practice at any one time.

How you can help:

  • With the exception of children and patients with carers, patients should come alone.
  • A distance of at least 2 metres must be observed if other people are present in the practice.
  • We would prefer to restrict access to the toilet on site, in view of the additional cleaning that would be required by our staff to maintain our enhanced standard of infection prevention during this time.
  • Where possible, all necessary forms will be emailed to you in advance and returned before your appointment, via email.
  • Payments will be taken over the phone after your appointment or can be made by bank transfer in some circumstances.
  • Please attend your appointment with minimal and only essential personal belongings, since personal items are difficult to clean and disinfect.
  • Please do not arrive without an appointment.

We look forward to seeing you again and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we take to keep you, and every patient, safe in our practice.

To make an appointment, please call us on 01626 365896 or email info@stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk or use the ‘Contact us’ form on our website at www.stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk

Thank you for being our patient. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to welcoming you back.

Sincerely,

St. Paul’s Dental Team

Have you heard on the Grapevine?

And now for the good news.

Dentistry in general practice can recommence from Monday 8th June.

So we will be working really intensively this week to make this possible, whilst continuing to put the safety of our patients and staff first and adhering to all government guidelines.

It cannot be business as usual but a start to a slow but steady recovery.
For the foreseeable future all routine appointments will remain cancelled, while we prioritise patients in pain and with current dental issues.

There are many things we will need to do differently, like all organisations returning to business during an ongoing Coronavirus pandemic and you will see necessary variations from your usual dental experience.

We need to limit patient contact outside of the treatment room to a minimum and will endeavour where possible to utilise other methods such as email and telephone for forms and payments.

Watch this space for further details.

If you have an urgent dental problem, phone the Practice on 01626 365896
For routine enquiries, please initially try to contact us by email info@stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk or via the ‘contact us’ form on our website www.stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk

Your ongoing patience and consideration to the current COVID 19 situation is much appreciated, thank you.

Updated news during COVID-19

Hello to our valued patients,

We wanted to update you on our current situation during this stage of the Coronavirus pandemic.

We do not yet have a confirmed date for when we can reopen the Practice. Dentistry remains high risk because of the close contact required and because most treatments create an aerosol, releasing particles into the atmosphere.

In order to keep our patients and staff safe from Covid-19, we are strictly adhering to government guidelines.

When we are permitted to resume seeing patients face to face, it will not be back to normal but towards a new normal, a term you will have no doubt heard used recently, where additional measures will be in place to continue to ensure everyone’s safety.

We will have a back log of patients in need of urgent dental care and anticipate a dramatic reduction in the number of appointments we will be able to get through in a day, in implementing these additional measures including more stringent infection control, utilising additional equipment and ensuring social distancing.

We want you to know that the entire team at St. Paul’s are committed to the task ahead of us and continuing to provide excellent dental care to you all.

Meanwhile our Dentists, Nick, Neil and Rachel are continuing to share the responsibility of our telephone triage service and during our normal working hours are available to help you with any dental problems you have.

We know your dental history and have access to your individual records, so we are well placed to be able to help. We will do everything we can to save teeth where we can and if all else fails we can refer on to the local Urgent Dental Care Centre.

Phone 07716 192815 to speak to one of our Dentists.

Outside of normal working hours the emergency dental service provided can be accessed via NHS 111 or by phoning 03330 063 300

How you can help us.
If you have a dental problem or something you are even just a bit concerned about, let us know.
We can add you to our priority list and make sure you are seen at the earliest opportunity when we return to work. We will also be prioritising those of you whose appointments for dental treatment were cancelled at the beginning of lockdown.
If you are lucky enough to have got through this early part of the pandemic without any dental problems, please continue to be patient until such time as we can resume more routine dental care appointments.
For routine matters you can continue to contact us via email at info@stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk

Kindest regards

Your dedicated dental professionals
St. Paul’s Dental Practice Ltd.

Current status!

 

 A message to reassure you all.

We are taking this current Coronavirus epidemic very seriously and doing everything we can to follow government guidelines and keep all our patients and staff as safe as we can.

As we know, guidance is changing daily and we are monitoring things closely.

For now, we are remaining operational and the Practice is open for all your dental needs. As a dental service we already adhere to strict cross infection control measures and have a high standard of working conditions. At the same time we are putting additional control measures in place, in our public spaces.

We appreciate your co-operation in assisting us with these additional measures and ask you all to follow the national guidelines and not put anyone else at risk.

If you feel it would be wiser for you not to attend the Practice, we will happily postpone your appointment. Please let us know if you are not intending to attend any appointments.

If you are self isolating and have any dental health concerns during this time, then please feel free to contact us in the usual ways and we will be able to advise you.

Telephone: 01626 365896     or     Email: info@stpaulsdentalpractice.co.uk

For further information on the current guidelines for tackling Coronavirus visit http://www.nhs.uk

 

Which Toothpaste should I use?

Read on for our top tips on toothpaste essentials.

If you brush your teeth well, you don’t need any extra ingredients other than Fluoride. Fluoride helps control tooth decay by reducing the effect of acid erosion.

Look back at our previous Blog on Fluoride for all you need to know. 1st Feb 2018

However adding toothpaste to your brush does enhance the experience, if only by adding moisture and breath freshening agents.

There are other ingredients beside Fluoride with proven oral health benefits.

  • Triclosan is antibacterial
  • Arginine neutralises plaque acids
  • Silica is abrasive, so can remove surface stains
  • PVM/MA Copolymer is a binder, when added to ingredients such as Triclosan, helps it stay on your teeth and gums
  • SLS Sodium Lauryl Sulfate is a foaming detergent which dissolves dirt and grease

Toothpaste manufacture is a competitive industry and all sorts of claims are made. Big name brands can be more expensive but don’t be too misled, you need to compare prices per 100ml.

If you pay more, do you get a more effective product for your money?

Generally bigger companies can afford more extensive or better quality research for evidence of effectiveness.

Your oral health comes down to your own daily hygiene regime alongside regular visits to your Dentist and Hygienist and tooth brushing is an important part of this but we are all individuals and our teeth and gums can be affected differently by common factors such as our general health, environmental influences or lifestyle.

Because of this toothpaste manufacturers create products to target specific needs.

Sensitivity – the key ingredient is potassium nitrate but there is little evidence that specific toothpastes targeted at reducing sensitivity are any better than reducing acidic foods and drinks in your diet or avoiding brushing after eating.

Wait at least 30 minutes after eating before you brush.

Tooth enamel is a protective layer for your teeth. Acids created by the breakdown of food can wear away that protective enamel. During meals, the acid level is raised and your teeth are at their weakest state.

Saliva works to restore the proper pH level and wash away acidic food particles, giving your enamel the balance it needs to continue its protective work.

Even soft-bristled toothbrushes can be highly abrasive when enamel is weakened by high acid levels. It’s best to let saliva do its job first after you eat.

Another common cause of sensitivity is over-brushing or being too enthusiastic with your toothbrush. Ask your Hygienist to show you the best way to brush.

Avoid toothpastes that contain abrasive ingredients, often those claiming to whiten teeth or remove stains.

Whitening – there is limited evidence of whitening toothpastes having an advantage over standard fluoride toothpaste and in no way can they compete with the effectiveness of professional whitening.

How do they whiten? Colgate adds optical brighteners, a blue pigment that leaves a sheen on your teeth temporarily. Other types contain abrasives such as silica. Beware fads such as charcoal based toothpastes, these can be strongly abrasive but often don’t contain fluoride, so fail to protect your teeth from decay. There is no substantiated evidence for the benefits of charcoal.

Enamel erosion protection – claims like strengthens, restores enamel or prevents erosion are backed up by limited evidence that there is a significant advantage over standard toothpaste.

Again take note of dietary and brushing advice above for effective enamel protection.

So when it comes to choosing a toothpaste look at what is in it and don’t be swayed by the hype that goes with it! Make a good choice based on Fluoride content, antibacterial properties and taste and ask your Dentist for their recommendation.

Don’t forget your empty toothpaste tubes are recyclable through the Colgate/Terracycle initiative, for which we are a collection point.

And hot off the press! Colgate have also just started manufacturing recyclable toothpaste tubes.