The keystone of a great smile

Behind every great smile is a diligent dental hygiene routine. Dental decay and gum disease, the two main causes of tooth loss, are both caused by the acids given off by the bacteria that live in our mouths, so it’s very important to take the time and effort to keep these invisible critters at bay.

Dental Hygiene in BanburyIn themselves, the bacteria responsible for so much damage in our mouth are not harmful. They just love to feast on the sugars in our mouths. When sugar cane was introduced to the court of Queen Elizabeth 1 in the 1500s, no one knew it caused so much harm. Good Queen Bess was a raving sugar addict, had sugar at every meal and even used it to brush her teeth with. Her teeth all started to rot and turn black.

Now back in those days, the Queen was the leader of fashion, and everyone at court followed suit with the black teeth look, some using soot rubbed on their teeth to get a quick makeover.

Nowadays, we know that sugar is the main fuel for decay in the mouth, and we are advised to either avoid it as much as possible, or to brush it away after eating so that the bacteria is our mouths have less to feed on.

Dental hygiene is vital to keeping our teeth healthy. The bacteria that feed on sugars don’t just float around, they stick to our teeth, particularly in the crevices around the gum line and the grooves on the molars. Eat some really sugary food and give it an hour or two and you can actually feel ridges of bacteria developing and your teeth becoming furry-feeling.

Here at Amsel & Wilkins in Banbury, we recommend a twice yearly clean and polish with our hygienist. This may be more often if you are a smoker, have diabetes or are pregnant, because these three things can increase your chances of gum disease. Our hygienist will remove the tartar that has built up and give you advice on how to better clean your teeth. If you have clean teeth, you will hang onto them for longer with diligent dental hygiene in Banbury.

The foundation of good oral health

You may think that your mouth is home to just your teeth, gums tongue, and taste buds, but, you are in fact the home to millions of invisible citizens made of bacteria, who live there. They are meant to be there and don’t do any harm themselves.

Dental Hygiene in BanburyThese invisible critters feed on sugar and get to work on digesting any that are left in your mouth when you have been eating or drinking sugary drinks. If they have a good supply of sugars, they can rapidly breed and build up a layer of stickiness on your teeth. This film of bacteria is called plaque, and if it is not removed after about three days it hardens into something called tartar or calculus. While the bacteria themselves are harmless, the acids they give off are not.

What decay does

These acids can eat through the enamel that form the protective casing over your teeth, and once they have made a hole through to the dentin, other bacteria can get it and start to eat away, creating decay. This can get down into the pulp and nerves of the teeth, and that’s when you get toothache. It may be just decay, but if it gets infected as well, you may have to have root canal therapy. This is when the dentist has to clean the infection out from the root of your tooth, and then, when it is empty, fill it and seal it. You get to keep your tooth this way, and natural teeth are always better than replacement teeth.

Sometimes it’s not possible for us at Amsel & Wilkins in Banbury to save your tooth, and you will have to have it replaced with either a fixed bridge, a denture or a dental implant.

As you can see, each treatment is more invasive and more expensive. It’s going to be way cheaper to just practise good dental hygiene in Banbury, with twice-daily brushing with a fluoride toothpaste, flossing, mouthwashes and interdental brushes. You should also come for a bi-annual check-up and get your teeth professionally cleaned and polished by the dental hygienist.

Brighten your smile with professional bleaching in Banbury

Over time, most adult teeth become discoloured, yellowed or duller. You do not have to smoke, drink coffee or red wine to lose your sparkling smile. When we age so do our teeth, becoming more transparent and developing darker enamel.

In the world of cosmetic dentistry, teeth whitening is perhaps the easiest and most common method to improve the colour of your teeth. At Amsel and Wilkins, we will boost your confidence in your smile with bleaching treatments that are custom-made to fit your individual needs.

Bleaching in BanburyWhat causes yellow teeth?

Tooth enamel is naturally white. Unfortunately, as it is worn down it becomes transparent and starts to show through to the next layer of the tooth underneath. This layer has a naturally yellower tone, so the thinner your tooth enamel becomes, the more yellow your teeth will look. Tooth enamel can become thinner due to a number of reasons and ageing is one of them. This is why people of a certain age tend to have yellow teeth. Other causes include caffeine, red wine, highly-pigmented foods and beverages and certain medications. Yellow teeth can also be the result of genetics.

How can teeth whitening help?

If you already have yellow teeth, teeth whitening is the fastest way to quickly brighten your smile. At Amsel and Wilkins, we offer home whitening which consists of custom-made bleaching trays that patients have to wear with bleaching gel at home for a few hours every day over a period of two weeks or so. This methods is very safe and offers effective results.

If you are a good candidate for teeth bleaching in Banbury, your dentist will discuss the process with you. Professional teeth whitening allows your dentist to choose the right method based on the condition and colouring of your teeth without hurting your enamel.

To learn more about our teeth whitening , please call us today.

Your smile matters – cosmetic and face consultations in Banbury

With so many cosmetic treatments available today, how can you be sure you are choosing the best? If you have decided that the time has come for that smile makeover you have been thinking about, cosmetic dentistry can help you achieve your goals. Unlike regular dentistry, cosmetic dentistry focuses on the aesthetics of your smile for a healthy-looking and balanced result.

Cosmetic & Face Consultations in BanburyAt Amsel and Wilkins, we appreciate the transformative effects of cosmetic treatments in helping our patients achieve their ideal smile. Our experienced dental team will begin with a comprehensive examination of your teeth and proceed to a smile analysis as well as a detailed discussion of your goals and smile aspirations, before creating a customised treatment plan. Our modern dental techniques and treatments can provide a comfortable dental experience and great results.

What to expect during a cosmetic and face consultation

To get an idea of what you want to achieve with cosmetic dentistry treatments, your dentist will ask you a number of questions about your treatment goals. You may want to consider in advance your least favourite feature about your smile. For instance, do you simply wish to whiten your teeth with teeth whitening, or do you need more extensive treatment, like teeth straightening? Understanding what you expect to achieve with cosmetic dentistry will help your dentist decide which treatments could be ideal for you.

After understanding your concerns and examining your teeth thoroughly, your cosmetic dentist will work with you to create an individual treatment plan. Depending on the state of your teeth and your aesthetic goals, your treatment plan may involve a single procedure or multiple treatments over the course of several appointments. Our aim is to explain as much as possible from the beginning and help you navigate your way through the procedure.

Your consultation appointment will also give you the opportunity to get to know us better. We are happy to answer your questions and give you more information about our dental practice. We will be happy to show you photographs and testimonials, so you see for yourself what kind of results you can expect from our cosmetic treatments.

Silver, it’s not a good look

Silver fillings. They’re not truly silver, are they? They’re not made of silver, and frankly, they don’t look silver either. In your mouth, they look dark, glinty grey. They may protect your teeth, but they don’t do a whole lot for your image, and if you’ve got a lot of them, you may feel too self-conscious to laugh. There’s no hiding your past love affair with sugar when you’ve got silver fillings.

So, why not replace old silver fillings in Banbury? Why not indeed! Here are some good reasons why, because yes, there are even more than the fact that they don’t look so nice.

Replace Old Silver Fillings in BanburyTeeth filled with white fillings are stronger

If you need a new filling, then have a white one, please. When we put in a silver filling we have to remove a greater amount of healthy tooth material than when we use white composite material. This means the tooth is much stronger with a white filling and more likely to withstand years of chewing.

Less chance of decay under white fillings

When we put in a white filling, we layer in the composite material, curing each layer with a special light. It bonds seamlessly to the sides of the cavity, leaving no space for decay-causing bacteria to be able to sneak in. Silver fillings are packed into the cavity, tight against the inside of the tooth, but there is no way to bond the two together, so there is always the chance for decay to happen underneath the filling.

White fillings have replica chewing surfaces

When you have white fillings, we build up the layers and when they have been hardened we can sculpt them to recreate the mounds and valley of your lost molar. We’ll get you to bite down on carbon paper every now and then as we sculpt so we can make sure your teeth bite together really well. Conversely, amalgam, which is a pretty soft material, cannot be sculpted and so you end with a tooth with a flat centre to it, which is far less efficient at grinding up your food for swallowing.

Go white with Amsel & Wilkins

Nothing says youth and health as well as a lovely set of pearly white teeth. How are yours looking after the winter and all that tea, red wine, coffee and other staining foods, not to mention tobacco? Bit on the yellow/grey side? How about when you laugh? Are you advertising your dental history to the world with rows of dark, glinty amalgam fillings?

All in all, it’s not a combo that’s going to create a dazzling smile, so maybe now is the time to go white in Banbury, with your trusty dental team here at Amsel & Wilkins.

Go White in BanburyWhite fillings

Did you know that white fillings make stronger teeth than amalgam fillings? That’s because your dentist doesn’t need to remove as much as healthy tooth material to put in a white filling. Also, the composite materials we use, bond to the inside of the teeth, so your filling is impenetrable by sneaky, decay-causing bacteria. Not so with amalgam, which sits inside the cavity and can allow bacteria to enter between it and the tooth. And, another big plus is that white fillings can be sculpted to recreate the mounds and valleys of an effective chewing surface, where amalgam can only lie flat within the tooth.

Several good reasons to go white next time you need a filling, or to get one replaced. Or why not have all your amalgam fillings replaced at once? You’re going to love tipping your head back to laugh again if you do.

Teeth whitening

Our teeth naturally get yellower as we age and the thinning enamel reveals the yellow dentin below. This, or staining as described above, can be transformed with the Zoom! whitening system.

Power whitening in the clinic takes about an hour to lighten your teeth by several shades. Protective barriers are put over your lips and gums before we paint your teeth with the whitener, which is then activated by a UV lamp.

Whitening at home takes a couple of weeks of wearing custom-made gel trays every day for a short period. The advantage of home whitening is that you can top up your treatment at any time.

Getting your fillings changed and your teeth whitened will help your confidence in your smile to go through the roof.

What to expect during a dental hygiene appointment in Banbury

An essential step to keeping your mouth healthy is to regularly visit your dentist for check-ups and ongoing oral care. By doing so, you can help prevent oral health issues from getting extensive and more expensive. Regular cleanings should be performed every six months to ensure that your teeth remain healthy and plaque-free.

At Amsel & Wilkins, we believe that prevention is better than cure and we offer a thorough hygienist’s clean and polish in Banbury. Our experienced hygienists are trained in the latest techniques to offer you quality dental care. We are also committed to educating our patients on tooth brushing and flossing.

Dental Hygiene in BanburyWhy you should schedule regular dental cleanings

Even if you brush and floss your teeth diligently at home, it is impossible to get rid of the plaque gather below your teeth and gum line on your own. Regular dental cleanings are essential for every patient as they are the only way to remove plaque and bacteria from hard-to-reach places in your mouth. Moreover, they have significant health benefits. Not only do they prevent gum disease and tooth decay, but they also give you a brighter smile and prevent bad breath. Last but not least, your dentist will detect early signs of cavities and gum disease.

What should I expect during a teeth cleaning?

A hygienist’s clean and polish in Banbury is a painless procedure and typically takes less than an hour. The first part of the cleaning will involve the dental hygienist using special equipment to remove plaque and tartar from both above and below the gum line. Next, the hygienist will polish your teeth. The last step in the teeth cleaning procedure involves advice on how to brush and floss your teeth properly.

Protect your oral health

At our dental practice, the length of your hygienist’s clean and polish appointment will vary according to how long it has been since your last dental cleaning and the amount of plaque build-up on your teeth. We are committed to providing the most advanced dental health services to keep your mouth, teeth and gums healthy and clean. To book an appointment, contact us today.

Get a new denture in Banbury

False teeth have been around since at least 700 BC, when they were made out of human or animal teeth. Tooth decay became a much bigger problem after the Industrial Revolution when refined sugar became cheap and readily available. Advances in modern dentistry have led to a decline in the number of people with dentures. However, inadequate dental care can still lead to extensive tooth decay and gum disease, and dentures may be used to replace teeth that have been lost.

Dentures in BanburyAt Amsel & Wilkins, we appreciate that losing multiple teeth can cause more than just aesthetic problems; gaps in your mouth can affect your ability to bite and chew food properly as well as your ability to speak. More importantly, missing teeth can cause the rest of your teeth to move into the empty spaces, making them difficult to clean and further affecting your oral function.

Luckily, you can smile confidently again with the help of customised, natural-looking full or partial dentures created just for you. Partial dentures, in particular, are an effective and inexpensive solution if you are missing some teeth and you now want to have dental implants.

Full dentures

Our dental practice offers high-quality, customised, full dentures that are designed to meet your individual needs. Our full dentures are biofunctional, meaning that they are created to reproduce your oral function as closely as possible. Full dentures are usually fitted as soon as your natural teeth are removed, so you are never left without teeth. However, in some cases, there may be some delay to allow your gums to heal. Your dentist will take impressions of your teeth and send them to our technician. While you are waiting for your new dentures, temporary dentures may be fitted to your mouth. Full dentures fit comfortably over your gums and are easy to remove for cleaning.

Partial dentures

Removable partial dentures usually have replacement teeth fixed to an acrylic base that matches the colour of your gums. The acrylic base may cover a metal framework. Partial dentures are attached to your natural teeth with a clasp. This holds them securely in place.

If you wish to get a denture in Banbury, contact us today.

Why bother with braces?

Have you noticed how more people have lovely straight teeth these days? Is it because they were born that way? No. Sadly few westerners have good arches and good straight teeth, our diet isn’t good enough. The reason is that more children and more adults are getting their teeth straightened.

Looks great, doesn’t it? But isn’t it just pure self-indulgence? Well, no, at Amsel & Wilkins we think that there is much more to straighter teeth in Banbury than pure vanity.

Straighter Teeth in BanburyCleaning

The most important thing about straighter teeth is that they are much easier to keep clean. If you want to keep your teeth for as long as possible, you need to remove that plaque at least twice a day. Plaque is the sticky film of bacteria that builds up on your teeth throughout the day, multiplying as it feeds on the sugars left from food and drink in your mouth. As they feed, the bacteria give off acids, which erode your tooth enamel (leading to decay) and irritate your gums (leading to gum disease). Leave plaque in place and you’ll lose your teeth to decay or gum disease eventually. But, if you have fewer nooks and crannies for plaque to hide in, your teeth will last longer.


Straight teeth that line up along the jawbone evenly distribute the strong forces created when we chew. If your teeth are wonky in some way, chances are that only a few of your teeth are bearing the burden, and, with forces of up to 97kg or 200lbs being created when we chew, it’s easy to see how teeth can just crumble away before their time.


Our smile is our most important non-verbal tool of communication. We use it to say hello and signal that we are warm and friendly. People are hardwired to look at smiles to work out if this is a friend or a foe. If you suppress or hide your smile because you are embarrassed, people will probably misinterpret this as a sign of coldness. Using your smile smooths your path through life.

So, there you have it, three very good reasons to invest in straighter teeth. Come and see us to find out more.

Why people love Invisalign

At Amsel & Wilkins, we get to see just how much our patients who need teeth straightening love Invisalign in Banbury. And yet, we also know that there are still plenty of people who have never even heard of this revolutionary way to straighten teeth.

It is such a shame because many of those people would leap at the chance to get straighter teeth if they knew there was a way to do so without having to go through the hassle of cleaning stuck food out of their braces, or being on the receiving end of stares and even jokes.

Invisalign in BanburyInvisalign totally avoids both of these scenarios by being removable and invisible. It’s one problem with getting it known, no one can see our patients wearing their aligners, so they can’t ask about them and be told, ‘Yes, they’re amazing and I goth them at Amsel & Wilkins’. Instead, people just see teeth magically getting straighter, if they notice at all, because it’s a gradual process. More likely that, someone might say ‘Hey, didn’t you used to have wonky teeth?’ Or more likely not, because we’re British and we don’t do stuff like that.

How does Invisalign work?

Invisalign doesn’t have brackets and wires that are cemented to the fronts of the teeth. Instead it relies on a series of mouth guard-style rigid, very thin, transparent aligners. These snap on over the teeth and are so thin that, at 0.3 millimetres, they disappear when they are in place. Very few people spot them because they’d have to be staring hard into someone’s mouth to do so, and that’s just not polite, is it?

The other great thing about this way of straightening teeth is that Invisalign aligners are removed for eating, and cleaning. This saves a whole lot of time in the bathroom poking about with interdental sticks. It also means that you can continue to eat whatever you like without fear of bunging up or breaking your straightening device.

The aligners do need to be worn for 20–22 hours a day, but people find that doing so keeps their eating on the straight and narrow, and some even lose a bit of weight.