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 Mar 8, 2024


Didn’t we have a lovely time!



Thank you to everyone who managed to make it along to our birthday celebration.  We had a fabulous day.  I’ve included a few photos to give you a flavour of the day.  It was so much fun to meet everyone in such different circumstances. And as you can see from the photos it was very social.  Just like a drinks party at home really.  



At the end of the day we were shattered and ready for a quiet night -  though Jodie expressed her desire for a rest differently than the usual 'dying for a cuppa'!!  Obviously having fun is harder work than actually working!




We got so many cards and good wishes and wanted to say thank you for those.  I've included a pic of a beautiful home made card we got which wished us a 'fluo-ride of a fun party' and included a joke which I will pass on here.

Q. What does the dentist of the year get?

A.  A little plaque. 

They don't get better than that folks!




Much as it may embarass this client I cannot resist posting the next pictures. The card was from a client wishing us well.  And Tims' smile!!!   What can I say other that to publish a disclaimer - Gentle Dental had no part in the creation of this smile.   I couldn't understand why he was quite so enthuastic about attending the celebration when I met him a few days earlier.    It amazing what you can pick up on Amazon (other purchasing platforms exist),  and how evolution needs to take us further away from gorillas.   Not that I am comparing Tim to a gorrilla - or am I?







Now to more serious topics - I realise we need to keep reminiding you of the additional benefits you receive as a member of Gentle Dental. We frequently find that clients have not remembered about these when things happen with their teeth.


I know I have spoken about these before but I thought I would tell you some 'real-life' stories so you can see them in action, as it were, and it might cement the idea of these benefits in your mind and allow you to call on them when the need arises.  


I am focusing on the two main benefits - trauma cover & worldwide emergency cover.




Last summer we got a call from a client.  She had a new puppy which had jumped up and “smacked' her in the face a few days previously and she was now experiencing pain in her front tooth, which had previously been root treated.   We asked her to come to see us for an emergency assessment which, on the membership, is free of charge (normally £170).  There wasn’t anything signposting a major problem so we had to play a ‘wait and see what rears its head’ game and two weeks later the tooth obliged.  On exam at this stage Rob could tell that the root of the tooth had split.  The only option to relieve the discomfort, was to take the tooth out.

Our first priority always is to get a client out of pain so we moved forward, made a simple denture and fitted the denture on the same day as we took the tooth out so our client was not left with a gap at the front of her mouth.   We now had breathing space in which to plan the next steps.

Taking out a front tooth is straight forward for us but very traumatic for the client as, obviously, the gap is visible to all.  And while there are numerous options for replacement of the missing tooth - a denture, a dental bridge or an implant -  these can be quite expensive and take a long time to complete. 

We arranged time to chat about the options for replacing the tooth  and reminded the client about the trauma cover through her membership which would cover some of the cost of the treatment.  This helped with the decision as it certainly made the more expensive option, a dental implant, a more affordable option.   And this is what the client chose.

The membership allowed the client to reclaim almost £1700, approximately 0.4% of her total spend.  A very good return on a simple additional benefit to the membership, which costs you, the client, nothing. 

The below pictures are in order of immediately after the puppy incident, a few days later when the tooth decided to show us what was going on and finally the implant and crown in place.  As you can see from the final picture it is totally natural looking in her smile. 






With regard to the Worldwide cover, I had a client who mentioned at his hygienist visit how his recent holiday to the Caribbean was almost spoilt when a crown, visible when he smiled, came out.  The resort saved the day and found a dentist who recemented it for him.   However, his holiday insurance excess made it not worth the effort to make a claim.  I reminded him about his worldwide emergency cover and advised that he submit his receipts.  Two weeks later he had a payment in to his account which did not cover the entire cost but was way more than his travel insurance would have paid.

So basically, if you are a member of Gentle Dental and anything dental occurs when you are away from home, whether in this country or abroad, find a dentist to sort things for you, get a receipt and on your return either call us or Practice Plan to find out your next steps to make a claim.  

If you are not on the membership and would like to find out more speak to any member of the team who will be happy to help.  It is possible to be a member and make use of the members benefits alongside a work or personal private health plan.  We are more than happy to chat this through with you and explain the savings you can make. 




I would like to take this opportunity to introduce you to one of our new team member, Shilpa, who is a dental hygienist and she will be joining the team in June.   Karenn has moved away from Salisbury and is finding the travel exhausting so she is cutitng down on her days.  Shilpa stepping into the breach seems fitting as it was through Karenn that I first met her. 

Shilpa adn Karenn worked together at another practice and I first met Shipla about 2 years ago at a regional study day run by the British Society for Dental Hygienists and Therapists (BSDHT).  Since then I have come across her at every conference and meeting I attend and I don't go to them all by any means.  So unless she is stalking me, Shilpa obviously attended everything she possibly can to ensure she is up to date and knowledgeable about her role.  

Shilpa actually trained as a dentist in India and when she moved to this country with her young family she just couldn't take the time out to study for the dentistry exams she would need to take to allow her to work here.  She also realised that dentistry in the UK is quite different to India.   With this in mind Shilpa decided to apply to register as a hygienist and while that was happening she worked as a dental nurse, did the training course and registered with the General Dental Council (GDC) as a nurse.  She is a popular choice with the entire team, most of whom have met and chatted with her at the various training days we attend.  We are looking forward to welcoming her to the team. Also having tasted her traditional home cooking I am hoping for lots of tasty samosas etc. for the staff room.



We also say a sad farewell to Laura who has decided to pack a backpack to head to sunnier climes for a while.   Laura you will know from the reception team and she has been with us almost two years.   She will be missed by us all. 


We have welcomed some other new faces to the team.  However in the past I have enthuastically written about folks and then within a month or two they have decided it is not for them.  So rather than jinx things I will wait off and introduce the other new team members in the next newsletter.



We have reached the time of year when we work out our charity donation and choose our new charity.  Just to remind you this is a £10 donation we make to our chosen charity based on referrals of new clients we receive from you lovely people.  Last year we continued to support Hope For Tomorrow, the mobile cancer treatment service in Wiltshire and through your generous support raised over £3000 in sponsorship for our walk. Between this sponsorship and the £10 donation for referrals, we raised approximately £4500 for them.  Therefore, if we receive no objections, we feel we would like to put the £960 towards a donation to our new charity so we spread our support. 

Thank you so much for the faith you place in us and the confidence with which you mention us to friends, family and work colleagues.   We will continue to work hard to not let you down.

And now to our charity for this year and our decision making process on which one.  One of our clients is reaching an '0' birthday (70th) and is a keen cyclist.  He already embarks on what I would call 'mad' cycles each year but this year he is pushing it even further and doing a Duathalon. But not just any duathalon.  This one is a 16 mile run, 106 mile cycle and to finish, you just have to climb Mt Snowden!   I'm exhausted just writing about it.  He intends to raise money for Riding for the Disabled (RDA) and we decided we would join him in his quest (not in the actual cycling etc) and choose this as our charity this year.

RDA is a nationwide organisation run entirely by volunteers and does exactly what it says on the tin. Our local branch is in Wilton.  Rather than write lots about them, here is the link to their website if you would like to find out more.  I'm sure Rob and I will come up with some hairbrained way to raise more funds for the charity, though it certainy won't be as mad as Jerrys.




It simply remains for me to wish you all a Happy Easter and fingers crossed we get some dry weather in which to enjoy it.  I'm off to Ireland to visit my family so I know that is a vain hope for me.

See you all soon.


Niamh, Rob and the Gentle Dental team.

Gentle Dental Blog