Caring for the dental health of the Dartford area and beyond!
  1. Patient pre-appointment screening and information - 8th September 2020 by 4drdc-logins

    At Dartford Road Dental Centre the care of our patients and our staff is our utmost priority. Like all UK healthcare providers, we are very closely monitoring the spread of coronavirus and operating in line with national advice and guidance from Public Health England and NHS England.

    IF YOU ANSWER YES TO ANY OF THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS PLEASE CALL THE SURGERY AND POSTPONE YOUR APPOINTMENT.

    1 – Do you or anyone in your family have a fever (>37.8oC)?
    2 – Do you or anyone in your family have a cough, or change in taste/smell?
    3 – Are you or anyone in your household self-isolating, vulnerable or shielding?
    4 – Have you or anyone in your family tested positive for COVID-19? If yes, have you or the person in your household recovered/has it been 14 days since diagnosis or 7 days since the onset of symptoms?
    5 – Have you travelled internationally in the last 14 days?

    We have always, and continue to, maintain the strictest of infection control measures. These measures have now been increased further to ensure safety of all concerned. Please could you follow the guidance below before, during and after your visit with us:

    · The practice is no longer operating a walk-in service: do not come in early. If you are early, please remain in your car/outside the building until it’s time for your appointment.
    · WCs will not be available, therefore visit the toilet before you attend.
    · Please bring your own face mask.
    · A nurse will welcome you in. She will provide you with alcohol hand gel to use. Your temperature will be checked on entry and recorded. Please do not take any paracetamol before attending as this makes readings inaccurate.
    · Apart from minors and those who lack capacity, we are only able to see the patient concerned, please do not attend with friends or family members.
    · Where possible please do not bring additional items with you, e.g. bags, coats, etc..
    · We are avoiding cash transactions and therefore prefer card payments.

    For your information and to put your mind at ease, all our staff are screened on a daily basis and throughout the day by the practice manager.

    Finally, thank you for your custom and we look forward to seeing you soon.

    Dartford Road Dental Centre

  2. FACIAL AESTHETICS WITH YOUR DENTIST IN DARTFORD, KENT - 19th August 2020 by 4drdc-logins

    The natural ageing process, lifestyle and the environment contribute to unwanted facial lines, wrinkles and uneven skin tones.
    One of the most effective ways to make noticeable but subtle enhancements to your appearance and look younger is to smooth out those lines and wrinkles. We can help you achieve the results you want, using the very latest products and techniques.

    What is facial aesthetics?

    Facial aesthetics is the term we use to describe the range of non-surgical treatments our practice offers to temporarily soften expression lines and define certain facial features and contours, facial aesthetics are known and described in many forms e.g. Botox®, fillers, anti-wrinkle injections etc.

    What does facial aesthetics consist of?

    At Dartford Road Dental Centre we offer a range of treatment options that have proven to be both safe and effective, this includes injections to temporarily soften the appearance of frown lines and crow’s feet.
    Other options include dermal fillers designed to increase the volume and improve the appearance of the skin. Fillers can be used to temporally improve the definition of certain facial features including lips, cheek and chin.

    How can I ensure facial aesthetic treatment is safe?

    The most important aspect for patients when considering facial ascetics treatment is ensuring the practitioner is both suitably qualified and experienced. Consider also using practitioner who works from a clean and safe environment who provide a reputable service e.g. a health care establishment.

    At Dartford Road Dental Centre we have worked hard to build up a reputation of being a caring patient focused practice providing dental care and facial aesthetics in a safe and clean environment.

    What are my options and how does it work?

    Botulinum toxin was approved by the FDA in 1980 and has been safely used in patients since then. In the cosmetic industry the toxin is used to help relax and smooth wrinkles by blocking the movement of the muscles which cause them. Small injections of Botox® are made into the area of concern and after 5-7 days the effects start to show, lasting for 3-6 months before returning to normal.

    Dermal fillers are made of biodegradable Hyaluronic Acid in a liquid gel form and can enhance skin by smoothing lines and plumping up areas of lost elasticity. They can be used to contour the cheeks and chin, correct acne or chicken pox scars, and fill deep lines. They can also restore a more youthful look to lips that have become thinner and lost definition.

    As with all non-surgical treatments, these effects will gradually wear off so you will need top-ups to maintain smoother, plumper skin. If anti-wrinkle injections are used regularly, however, you will be able to wait longer between top-up appointments.

    Wrinkle softening is a straightforward procedure so you can even visit us during your lunch hour! Treatment takes just a few minutes and effects will show in a couple of days. There is no need for a recovery period following the procedure.

    Can dermal fillers be used alongside Botulinum Toxin?

    Yes. Fillers are injected under the skin whereas Botulinum Toxin is injected into the muscle.

    Dermal fillers will break down naturally over a period of 6 to 9 months and can be used independently as a highly effective anti-wrinkle treatment, or safely alongside Botulinum Toxin.
    Often, we see patients who would like to reduce wrinkle lines however sometimes if the lines are too deep Botulinum Toxin will not be as effective, so using fillers to smooth the lines out is also an option.

    Contact us now to book a consultation with our highly experienced dentists, Dr Baber Khan and Dr Claire Culverwell.

    For more information you can check our facial aesthetics pages by following the links below.

    https://www.drdc.co.uk/treatments/facial-aesthetics/dermal-fillers/
    https://www.drdc.co.uk/treatments/facial-aesthetics/wrinkle-reduction/

  3. WE ARE BACK TO NORMAL! - 8th July 2020 by 4drdc-logins

    As a practice we have implemented many changes to ensure your safety and that of our team, which include seeing less patients to maintain social distancing, COVID-19 screening questionnaires, front door buzzer and your patient journey. You will be informed of these changes in detail when you book your appointment.

    We have always, and continue to, maintain the strictest of infection control measures. These measures have now been increased further to ensure safety of all concerned.

    We pride ourselves in investing in technology to create a modern and safe environment for our patient. With a plasma-based filter, the Woodpecker Q7 Purifier, we recycle air in the rooms, filtering out pollutants and microorganisms, including viruses.

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    We are now open as normal, including evenings and Saturdays. We are only able to see the patient concerned, please do not attend with friends or family members. Of course, minors will need to attend with a responsible adult, as will those that lack capacity. Please do not come in if you don’t have an appointment.

    For your information and to put your mind at ease, all our staff are screened on a daily basis and throughout the day by the practice manager.

    Finally, thank you for your custom and we look forward to seeing you soon.

    Dartford Road Dental Centre

  4. We are now open! - 15th June 2020 by 4drdc-logins

    We are seeing face to face emergency appointments.
    We are working hard to get through our backlog of patients in pain and urgent outstanding treatments. We are hoping to restart routine dentistry and hygiene from Monday the 29th of June (depending on government guidance). We will be in touch via email/telephone/text to arrange appointments and explain the changes you will find when you come in to see us.
    Please do not come in if you haven’t booked an appointment first.

    If you are a new patient who is looking to join our practice please get in touch!

    Stay safe and we’ll see you soon

    Dartford Road Dental Practice

  5. Post-COVID-19 return to work policy - 11th May 2020 by 4drdc-logins

    This policy has been created based on multiple updated sources from within the dental and medical professions. It outlines modifications to our normal procedures that we intend to employ once dental practices can be reopened after the COVID-19 pandemic peak of infection has subsided.

    It is not known at this time whether these procedures are temporary or whether they will become a permanent feature of the way dental practices must be run to ensure patient and staff safety in the future. The worldwide COVID-19 pandemic is still being evaluated and studied and policies and recommendations are likely to change in line with new scientific evidence over time.

    We would like to thank all of our patients for their patience and forbearance doing this long period of practice closure and for their understanding and cooperation whilst we implement new measures at the practice.

    Patient communication before reopening

    We would of course like to continue providing necessary dental care to all of our patients in the safest possible environment. We therefore respectfully request your full cooperation with any new or modified procedures at the practice.

    Our receptionists will be contacting patients with ongoing treatment and confirming appointments to continue with current courses of treatment. Our patients with ongoing or delayed courses of treatment will be prioritised in the first three months of opening.

    We will ask all patients who are returning for treatment to update their Medical History. This includes a new, more detailed, section regarding your recent activity which will allow us to assess your level of risk for coronavirus infection before you attend the surgery. We may be in touch via telephone more than usual prior to your visit.

    New measures to reduce risk of COVID-19 transmission

    Our normal cross-infection control protocols against all previously known pathogens are already woven into all clinical activity carried out at the practice. It should be remembered that the dental practice is already a very clean environment compared to public areas and it is not possible for us to control sources of infection outside the dental practice.

    There have been multiple suggestions from many sources as to how the risk of transmission of COVID-19 can be reduced in a dental clinical environment.

    We have collectively evaluated all of these and feel that the following measures will reduce risk to an acceptable level at the practice. Please be assured that all of our clinical staff will also be complying with these procedures to reduce the risk of cross infection in both directions.

    Before attending the practice

    Our staff will contact you to complete a pre-attendance assessment over the phone. If we feel that you are a medium to high risk of having possibly been infected, even if you are asymptomatic, we will respectfully request for you to delay booking any appointments with us for at least one month. However we will endeavour to make provision for even higher risk patients to have emergency treatment when required.

    We would recommend that patients in high-risk and extremely high-risk groups delay non-essential dental treatment for as long as possible until the trend of the pandemic becomes clear. To find out whether you are in a higher or very high-risk group please see the link below:
    www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/people-at-higher-risk-from-coronavirus/

    We will operate a payment-in-advance policy to regular examination and hygienist visits (which are normally made on the day of your visit) during this period. Advance payment will be requested when your appointment is booked and should be completed before attendance. This reduces the requirement for unnecessary contact or use of card terminals at reception.

    When travelling to the practice, we would recommend that you limit your close contact with other members of the public as far as possible. If you are able to drive or be driven and picked up by somebody with whom you live, this would be ideal. Alternatively, we would recommend coming to the practice in a taxi, ideally a partitioned black cab so that you are separated from the driver. Please book cabs in advance as there may be a shortage due to this reason when businesses reopen.

    Please carry hand sanitiser with you at all times, use regularly and avoid touching your face. Please wash your hands thoroughly for at least 30 seconds at every opportunity.

    Arriving at the practice

    We would like to eliminate waiting times in reception as much as possible so that you are not in close proximity to other patients. Accordingly, appointments will be staggered so that patients do not arrive or leave at the same time as other patients as far as we are able to manage.

    We will ask you to use hand sanitizer on arrival and restrooms will be out of use.

    Practice procedures

    Our team will have spent time critically looking at every aspect of the practice with a view to removing all non-essential items in the open to reduce the number of objects that may act as fomites (surfaces on which microorganisms may reside and can potentially be the cause of cross infection). You will find that the practice may appear quite bare when you attend.

    All clinical and common areas including door handles and surfaces will be regularly disinfected at set times. We will be providing an additional 30-minute buffer period between patients to allow additional time for decontamination procedures, allow for any treatment overruns and allow preparation time for the next patient so that they do not need to wait in the reception area.

    All future appointments will be made and confirmed by email or telephone to limit your time spent at reception.

    Dental procedures

    All dental staff will be upgrading their personal protective equipment in line with current recommendations and evidence including FFP2 and/or FFP3 masks, visors and protective clothing as appropriate. We may look different to you but underneath it all it is the same team!
    We are especially mindful that most dental treatments are aerosol-generating procedures (AGP’s). It is almost impossible for us to carry out meaningful dental procedures without generation of some level of aerosol. Aerosol suspended in the air is a potential source of infection which we wish to keep to a minimum. Currently, the dental literature suggests:

    • Our use of our normal high-volume suction reduces aerosol production by over 90%.
    • Our regular facemasks filter approximately 60% of remaining airborne particles.
    • FFP2 and FFP3 masks filter 94% and 99% respectively of airborne particles in both directions (patient to clinician and clinician to patient).

    We, therefore, feel that our normal dental procedures can be carried out with minimal risk.

    At the end of your appointment, we will collect all of your protective equipment for disposal by incineration and you will be able to leave directly after your appointment.

    We are also looking into the validity of viricidal air filtration and purification systems for the surgeries and the reception area to further reduce aerosol risk.

    The time taken to carry out treatment sessions may need to be extended by approximately 30 minutes in order to accommodate enhanced cross infection control procedures so please be mindful that you may need to spend longer at the practice than usual.

    This policy will be constantly reviewed and updated as necessitated by circumstances over time.
    If you have any questions regarding this policy or about your dental care please do not hesitate to contact us.

  6. Managing your toothache at home - 28th April 2020 by 4drdc-logins

    NHS England and the Department of Health have instructed dental practices to PRIORITISE URGENT TREATMENT where possible. The following guidance is to support you in helping managing minor symptoms at home.
    This guidance is to reduce the risk of virus transmission to you, our staff, and our patients.

    YOU NEED URGENT DENTAL TREATMENT IF YOU HAVE:

    – Facial swelling extending to eye or neck or floor of the mouth
    – Bleeding following an extraction that does not stop after 20 minutes of solid pressure with a gauze
    – Bleeding due to trauma
    – Severely broken tooth, or tooth fallen out with pain
    – Toothache that is preventing sleep, eating combined with swelling and fever that is not manageable with pain killers

    Please call the practice if you have a dental emergency as above.

    YOU NEED TO GO STRAIGHT TO A&E IF YOU HAVE:

    – Facial swelling affecting your vision, breathing or preventing your mouth opening more than 2 fingers width
    – Trauma causing loss of consciousness, double vision or vomiting

    NON-URGENT DENTAL CARE

    May need to wait until the practice re-opens.

    • Loose or lost crown, bridges or veneers
    • Broken, rubbing or lose dentures
    • Bleeding gums
    • Broken, loose or lost fillings
    • Chipped teeth with no pain
    • Loose orthodontic wires

    PAIN MANAGEMENT

    Over the counter pain killers can help (take in accordance with instructions on the packet).
    Patients who have confirmed COVID-19, or believe they have COVID-19, should take paracetamol in preference to ibuprofen.

    BLEEDING GUMS

    Bleeding from gums is NOT a dental emergency. Bleeding gums are usually due to gum disease, and will not stop until brushing improves.
    Brush 2x a day with a fluoride toothpaste for 2 minutes. Concentrate especially on the areas that are bleeding. Use floss or tepe (interdental) brushes to clean between your teeth every day.

    WISDOM TOOTH PAIN

    Most flare-ups can be managed with good home care.

    • Thorough cleaning (even if painful)
    • Corsodyl mouthwash (max 1 week use)
    • Soft diet
    • Warm salty mouthwash
    • Pain killers

    If you have difficulty swallowing or swelling in your cheek, you may need antibiotics. Call us or NHS 111.

    TOOTH SENSITIVITY

    If you have extreme sensitivity to hot or cold, sensitive toothpaste can help. Rub toothpaste directly on the affected area and don’t rinse afterwards. Anaesthetic gel can also help ease pain.

    ULCERS

    Most ulcers heal within 7-10 days. To ease the pain, try:

    • Warm salty mouthwash
    • Difflam (Benzydamine) spray or mouthwash
    • Thorough cleaning (even if painful)
    • Corsodyl mouthwash (max 1 week use)
    • Soft diet
    • Pain killers

    Rubbing dentures

    Denture adhesives like Fixodent may help secure a loose denture. Sharp edges can be filed using an emery board.

  7. Why can’t I see my dentist? - by 4drdc-logins

    At Dartford Road the care of our patients and our staff is our utmost priority. Like all UK healthcare providers we are very closely monitoring the spread of coronavirus and operating in line with national advice and guidance from Public Health England and NHS England.
    We encourage you to follow the national advice and guidance which is available at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public

    We will continue to triage our patients via the telephone so if you have a dental emergency please contact our reception where a member of our team will speak to you and arrange a call back from a dentist. Our dentist will give you advice and triage your dental problem, and any patients who require emergency treatment will be referred to an Urgent Dental Care Hub.

    Please note that patients CANNOT be seen at dental practices that have not been designated as urgent dental care sites by NHS England.
    These measures are in place to break the cycle of spread of COVID-19 – thank you for your understanding.

    Why routine dental treatments are not available

    Dental check-ups and treatments involve close contact between the dentist, nurses and patient and so should not take place. Also, dentists and their teams have to avoid using tools like drills and the ones used for scales and polishes. This is to prevent them from catching the virus from an infected patient and passing it on to other patients.

    Drills and other high-speed tools create a lot of ‘spray’ from patients’ mouths so dentists need to use protective clothing and equipment.

    COVID-19 has a seven-day period before symptoms show, where someone wouldn’t know they had it and could pass it on to others. If an unsuspecting patient had a filling, the spray from doing that procedure would likely infect the dentist and the nurse.
    The personal protective equipment dentists wear when using high-speed tools is currently required by hospitals treating coronavirus patients. Without this equipment dentists, hygienists, therapists and nurses are not safe to treat patients as normal.

    What if I have a dental emergency?

    Assuming you have not got COVID-19 related symptoms, you should call your practice. They will be able to decide what your options are.
    If you believe or know you have COVID-19 and have a dental emergency, please phone NHS 111.

    Information taken from https://www.bda.org/advice/Coronavirus/Pages/patients.aspx

  8. Covid-19 Update – 23rd March - 23rd March 2020 by 4drdc-logins

    Covid-19 Update – 23rd March

    We would like to inform you that due to the COVID-19 outbreak we are currently unable to work as normal following the latest government guidelines.

    We have taken the decision to cancel all routine examinations, treatments and hygiene appointments.

    Please do not arrive at the practice unannounced.

    We will be maintaining a telephone service for advice and booking emergency appointments. Please note, as the practice is closed, if we do need to see you in person this will be at our sister practice Crook Log Dental Practice in Bexleyheath.

    Dental emergencies include:
    • Severe pain for over 48 hours
    • Facial Swelling
    • Trauma or uncontrolled bleeding

    We understand this is inconvenient and it may mean the treatment timelines are extended. We will be able to reconvene normal service once it is safe to do so.

    If your appointment needs to be postponed, one of the team will be in touch.

    Thank you for all your support during these uncertain times. Stay safe and we look forward to seeing you all soon.

    Best wishes
    Dartford Road Dental Centre

  9. Covid-19 Update - 20th March 2020 by 4drdc-logins

    Dear Patient,

    Everyone is concerned about the developing situation with covid-19.

    We would like to reassure you that, as always, we are here for you and shall continue to act to ensure the health and the safety of our patients and team. We remain dedicated to the prevention of cross infection and transmission of infections.

    As dental professionals we are well versed in high levels of cross infection control, and the dental surgery is a very clean environment. There is hand sanitiser on the reception desk, and we ask each patient when they come in to sanitise their hands. All our treatment rooms are wiped down and sanitised between each patient as standard procedure.

    As matters develop we will need to respond to changing advice, possibly on a daily basis. We will do our best to continue to provide care to those who need it. As part of this, we would ask any patient who has cold or flu like symptoms to cancel their appointment, follow government advice, and not attend till those symptoms are gone. You can get further advice on symptoms from the NHS website here.

    Based on current guidance, in order to minimise risk, we are providing a skeleton service moving forward. We will be able to provide routine dental exams for healthy individuals and emergency treatments as standard. All non-essential treatment will be postponed for approximately 8-12 weeks. Patients with treatment deemed by the dentists as ‘essential’ may still be carried out, and you will be contacted directly in this case.

    We are asking all our patients over the age of 70 or who are medically compromised to postpone their visit to the practice.

    If you are self-isolating, or would just prefer to stay at home, and have dental concerns, we will be glad to arrange to have a discussion with you on the phone or via email. This won’t be able to deal with everything but we hope we may be able to provide reassurance in many situations.

    We are also able to offer advice through our E-Consultation page on our website home page (www.drdc.co.uk). On here you can send us pictures of your mouth and we will get back to you as to whether you need to come in or not.

    You will continue to get email reminders for your dental examination and hygiene visits. Please note, this is automated. We are currently booking in these appointments but in 8-12 weeks time so please give us a call or email us.

    Your oral health matters, and now more than ever please ensure you are brushing your teeth twice daily, and cleaning in between your teeth. Keeping your mouth healthy is an important part of keeping the rest of you healthy.

    The latest government guidance on Coronavirus can be found here : https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

    With Best Wishes,

    The Dartford Road Dental Centre Team

     

  10. Meet the team - 9th September 2019 by 4drdc-logins

    Dartford Road Dental Centre, our multi-disciplinary private dental practice is expanding even further!
    Our highly qualified team is growing so that we can continue to meet the needs of our patients.
    We feel it is important to keep you up to date with the members of our amazing team just so you know who to expect at your next visit.

    Over a series of blogs, we are introducing you to each and every member of our team.

    Introducing Lauren our Orthodontist….

    lauren

    This is Dr Lauren Hardwick
    Lauren graduated in dentistry from the University of Sheffield. She began her dental career initially in general dental practice and then in the hospital-based speciality of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, before returning back to general practice.

    During this time Lauren developed an interest in Orthodontics as a result of which she undertook training in Orthodontics. Initially over three years at Kings College London to reach specialist level, where she qualified with a distinction in her Master of Science in Orthodontics. She also attained the Membership in Orthodontics (MOrth) with the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. Furthermore, she was awarded and selected for a short clinical attachment in the Orthodontic department in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA. Lauren then undertook her Consultant training at Guys’ Hospital.

    Lauren has recently been appointed as Locum Consultant in Orthodontics at Chelsea and Westminster Foundation trust where she will provide complex care for Orthodontic patients.
    Lauren has been heavily involved in orthodontic research and audits. She has presented her work at National and international conferences, as well as having papers published in peer-reviewed scientific journals such as the British Orthodontic Journal.

    If you would like to book an appointment with Lauren or any of our Dentists,
    Please pop in to speak to our Reception team, call 01322 223 927 or email [email protected].