A warm welcome to our new dentist, Gillian West

After over 8 years at the practice, Bjorn Heisler left the practice at the end of March 2013. We would like to thank him for all his efforts, and wish him well in the future.

Gillian West, a dentist with nearly 30 years experience of general dental practice, has taken over from Bjorn.  Gillian has worked locally for many years, and we believe that her breadth of knowledge and experience will be a great asset to the practice.

We would like to extend a warm welcome to Gillian, and we look forward to her becoming an integral part of our team.

Welcome back….and thanks!

We would like to offer a warm welcome back to our hygienist, Debbie Armitage, following her period of maternity leave. Great to have you back!

We would also like to say a big thank you to Hannah McKenzie, who provided cover while Debbie was on maternity  leave, and did a very conscientious job helping to care for our patients. Many thanks Hannah from all of us, and best wishes for the future.

New Team Member

We would like to welcome our newest recruit, Becky Chappell-King. Becky has been involved in dentistry since 1996, initially training and qualifying as a dental nurse, but also has experience of reception and practice administration/management roles. Becky will be working as part of our reception team, and we are sure she will be a great asset to the practice. Welcome to the team, Becky!

Time heals

Professor Tim Newton is literally one of a kind – he is the UK’s only Professor of Psychology as applied to dentistry, and much of his working life revolves around researching and understanding anxiety in dental patients. He leads the Kings Health Psychology service in London which was set up in 2008 to help adults with dental anxiety.

I suspect he is a busy man – with 12% of adults in the UK reporting extreme dental anxiety, and 28% being extremely anxious about  dental injections ( Adult Dental Health Survey 2009 ), he has plenty to keep himself occupied!

In an interview in the latest edition of the British Dental Journal (1), Professor Newton lists his 5 top tips for dealing with anxious patients. One of these tips is to consider how to make the patient’s journey through the practice less anxiety provoking – ( for example, seeing patients on time, making patients aware that a close friend or relative is welcome to accompany them). There are many strategies that can be used to improve the patient journey. In my own personal experience, the one strategy I find that works above all others is giving patients sufficient time – time for patients to explain their anxieties, past experiences and current concerns about their dental health. Also time for myself and my staff to listen and absorb those anxieties, and to work out a strategy for supporting the patient through their treatment.

The Roman philosopher Seneca said:  Time heals what reason cannot – how true this is for so many anxious dental patients. He could have been referring to many of the patients we see here at No Fear Dentists, who find that time spent with an understanding and sympathetic team can be the best therapy of all.

 

(1)  BDJ – Volume 213, No 8, Oct 27th 2012

Congratulations, it’s a boy!

The whole team at No Fear Dentists would like to congratulate our hygienist, Debbie Armitage, on the arrival of her first child, a healthy baby boy. Ethan was born on 19th June, weighing in at 8lb 9oz. Both Mum and Ethan are doing very well.

Latex Allergy and Latex Free Gloves

In continuing to try and improve the level of care for our patients, we wish to advise patients that we have recently made a decision to stop the use of latex gloves within the practice.

For many years, latex gloves have been the gloves of choice within the medical and dental profession, due to their comfort, ease of use and low cost. However, they do carry the risk of allergic reaction with a small number of people with latex allergy, which can be extremely serious. Where we are aware that a patient has a latex allergy, a latex free option would be used, but clearly there is always the risk that a patient may have a latex allergy and be unaware of this.

In view of this, and the improvement in quality of latex free gloves, we will now no longer be using any latex containing gloves within the practice. This will eliminate the risk to patients of any such allergic reactions.