Decon Pete – COVID-19 and 2020 – what a year!

Introducing Decon Pete who will discuss everything dental practices need to know about disinfection and decontamination. In his first column, Pete discusses ACH and its importance to dentistry.

Who would ever have imagined as we were all singing Auld Lang Syne at the end of 2019, welcoming in a new year, that 2020 would be one consisting of a global COVID-19 pandemic?

The UK went into a national lockdown with all but essential business’s remaining open.

When the country, eventually, began to re-open dentistry was met with a new set of protocols and a new way of working.

Dentistry was already one of the safest divisions of the medical industry and its professionalism quickly adapted to implement and enhance these working procedures in order to make it even safer for its patients and staff.

We have seen new working documents from the NHS SOPs and FGDP’s COVID-19 Practical Guide, … Read the rest

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Tooth loss could be a symptom of long COVID, experts suggest

Tooth loss could be a new side effect of long COVID, dentists have warned. 

It has emerged that coronavirus may irritate the gums through inflammation – causing patients to suddenly lose teeth.

This comes as patients continue to report symptoms of ‘long COVID’, a term used to refer to those suffering from prolonged effects.

Common symptoms include fatigue, breathlessness and muscle aches and pains.

Long COVID recovery

According to a report by the New York Times, patients who already have dental difficulties and test positive for COVID-19 may see them exacerbated by the virus.

For example, one patient reports losing a tooth after contracting the virus, alongside other symptoms such as muscle aches.

After reaching out online, she came across a number of others who had experienced similar problems after testing positive. This included sensitive gums and chipped teeth.

Dr David Okano, a Utah-based periodontist, said dental problems may … Read the rest

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Commercial tenancies during the COVID-19 pandemic

Ivath Khan explores the implications of the pandemic on landlords and tenants of business properties.

Before the pandemic, most business leases required payment of rent on a quarterly basis. At the start of the pandemic, most business were able to pay their March quarter rent.

But as the pandemic continues to interrupt our lives, questions have begun to pour into our offices as people struggled in adapting to the ‘new normal’.

Ivath addresses some of the questions.

Is a tenant able to suspend payment of rent under the lease as a result of the crisis?

The lease will contain tenant rights to suspend rent, if there are any. The tenant will have to check the wording carefully.

Tenant rights regarding rent suspension are unlikely to allow the tenant to suspend rent payments due to the impact of COVID-19.

Can a lease be terminated early?

The simple answer is, without … Read the rest

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Associates dentist secrets: six simple steps to quadruple Invisalign cases in 60 days

Join Keely Thorne introduce six simple ways for associate dentists to quadruple Invisalign cases on Sunday 6 December at 19:00.

Six simple steps to quadruple your Invisalign cases in 60 days. For frustrated associates wanting to make the most of the 2020 boom in cosmetic dentistry.

During this free live training event you will learn the refined processes that will enable you to reduce in-practice days. Learn ways to increase your number of Invisalign case starts, and therefore dramatically increase your gross income.

Keely Thorne has learned and refined the processes that she will share with you. She will break all of that information down into six very effective yet practical steps. She believes that if you follow these steps, you too will have the same success!

During this free live training event, Keely will show you:

  • How to take control as an associate
  • The step-by-step system that generates Invisalign
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Research update: cryolipolysis

Aesthetic Dentistry Today explores the evidence base on the non-invasive fat reduction treatment growing in popularity amongst UK dental practices: cryolipolysis.

Cryolipolysis for the treatment of submental fat: review of the literature

Lipner SR (2018) J Cosmet Dermatol 17(2): 145-51


Submental fat accumulation is a common cosmetic concern. Cryolipolysis utilises non-invasive cooling to lyse adipocytes. A cryolipolysis device was recently approved for treatment of submental fat.


This manuscript provides a review of the preclinical work and clinical trials related to cryolipolysis for the treatment of submental fat. Settings, efficacy, and side effects are also discussed.

Materials and methods

A literature search was performed through Pubmed, Embase, Web of Science, and CINAHL, using the search terms ‘cryolipolysis’, ‘submental’, and ‘paradoxical adipose hyperplasia’. Additional sources from the original source bibliographies were used to further supplement this review.


There are four clinical trials and one case series (total 101 patients) … Read the rest

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Government pledge to modernise GDC in response to COVID-19

The government has committed to transforming laws related to professional regulators – including the GDC. 

Kicking off a consultation earlier this year – Reducing bureaucracy in the health and social care system: call for evidence – the Department of Health and Social Care has committed to making a change among professional regulators.

This aims to modernise and transform the legal framework of the nine health and care professional regulators. This commitment to regulatory reform would also extend to dentistry and the General Dental Council (GDC).

Dr Raj Rattan, dental director at Dental Protection welcomed the news – but says words need to be put into action.

Bureaucratic burden

‘Dental Protection welcomes the commitment by DHSC to modernise the work of regulators such as the GDC, with the aim of reducing the bureaucratic burden on dental professionals,’ he said.

‘The high level proposals set out by the government are a welcome … Read the rest

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COVID-19 pandemic ‘turbocharged’ access crisis in dentistry, says MP

A Member of Parliament says the access crisis in dentistry was ‘turbocharged’ by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

MP Judith Cummins yesterday secured a debate on access to dentistry and oral health inequalities, adding that its necessity is now ‘more urgent than ever’.

Speaking in Parliament, she urged the government to make progress with dental contract reform before inequalities worsen.

She dubbed it ‘the single most important thing that the government can do’, adding that it should be carried out with a view to more prevention.

Cinderella service

‘Dentistry is very much seen as the Cinderella service of the NHS,’ she said.

‘Clearing the backlog will be a considerable challenge. Even in the best of circumstances it would take years, but unfortunately we are not in the best of circumstances.

‘As people who have tried to get dental appointments since June know, dentists are operating with considerably reduced capacity. About 70% of … Read the rest

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The impact of COVID-19 on sustainability in dentistry

A year on from the Extinction Rebellion protests in London, and following a COVID-19 pandemic, Alkisti Vousvouni discusses sustainability issues in dentistry.

The UK parliament and EU countries declared a climate emergency in 2019 in an effort to prioritise this complex issue.

As the climate emergency threatens our ecosystem and air quality, it is obvious that it is a healthcare emergency.

COVID-19 has been an inconvenience for some, detrimental for others and certainly a shake-up of the world; an irrefutable awareness of our fragility. Predictions and real life examples such as the Syrian war help us realise the huge risk of the imminent societal collapse should we fail to tackle the climate emergency effectively.

And if you think that the Middle East is a bit too far away, our privileged western world will suffer more in the post-COVID generations.

To paraphrase Greta Thunberg: ‘Our house is on fire and according … Read the rest

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Michael Awua-Mensah – a life in dentistry

We find out a little more about dentistry in Ghana from dentist, Michael Awua-Mensah. He discusses his path into the profession and the current challenges he faces.

Please introduce yourself

Michael Awua-Mensah: I go by the name Michael Awua-Mensah (Dr Awua). I’m a general dentist in Ghana, west Africa.

I had my six-year dental training at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology (Kumasi, Ghana).

For the past four years I have been practising dentistry with experience in both the public and private sector.

Why did you first get into dentistry?

Michael Awua-Mensah: Getting into the health sector was always a focus of mine. But I was not too sure of the exact profession to engage in.

I gained admission to an another university to pursue pharmacy. However, after shadowing a few dentists in my country, I knew that dentistry was the place to be.

How difficult was it

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Orthodontic marketing – how has it been changed by the pandemic?

The orthodontic industry has always been highly competitive and probably more so now. Neil Hillyard looks at how to market effectively in COVID-19 times.

Neil Hillyard is a co-director of Hillyard MacDonald, a patient engagement and practice development company specialising in orthodontics.

He is the author of one of the UK’s most popular patient-focused orthodontic blogs. He was also one of the founding members of the British Orthodontic Society Patient Panel.

In the last few weeks, we have seen practices starting to slowly migrate towards ‘normal’ operations. What the new normal looks like is still a work in progress. The priority is to implement new operating procedures and get used to delivering a service with enhanced PPE.

It’s easy to overlook some of the important patient focussed tasks you still need to undertake. One of these tasks is marketing. In this article, we will look at what may have changed … Read the rest

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