Meet the team….

Welcome to our third meet the team and this time’s team member is Lynn Sloss.  Lynn is married to Donald, last time’s “Meet the Team” and as our Business Manager is usually to be found in our upstairs office although she does appear at the front desk on occasion.

“What do I love about my job? That’s easy , the team I work with, who are a fantastic bunch of people, and the fact that through them we can give patients, particularly the young and the fearful, a fantastic dental experience and the smile they deserve. Growing up I had some fairly painful and not overly sympathetic visits to the dentist. I really didn’t like my smile and was very self conscious of it and so to work with a team who believe in doing the best for the patient in the most caring and professional manner is amazing. Donald has been my dentist since he was a dental student- I do feel sorry for him sometimes but not enough to change dentist- and is responsible for changing my opinion of dentists and for giving me my smile back.

Away from work I love spending time with family and our dogs, am a keen photographer and enjoy all sorts of crafts. ”

Cats or dogs: Definitely dogs- apologies to all cat lovers out there. It’s probably more of a size thing than anything, I’m not very coordinated and tend to stand on or fall over smaller animals, probably explains our 2 Newfoundlands and the Pyrenean/Leonberger cross that we have.

What would your superhero power be? Not sure it’s superhero but I’d quite like to be like Samantha in Bewitched who could do the housework by wiggling her nose.

If I had an extra hour a day I’d spend it: doing something fun- definitely not doing the housework!

Thank you to our lovely patients

We received these lovely flowers from Megan last week as a thank you for her week’s work experience with us. In turn we’d like to say a big “THANK YOU” to our lovely patients who are always very welcoming to the work experience students we host. As a team we are all happy to share our love of dentistry with the students in the hope of persuading at least some of them to join the profession in some role.  We, and they, really appreciate patients welcoming them and sharing their experiences with them. It is especially rewarding when the students are as interested and keen as Megan was so a thank you to Megan too for an interesting week.

Sugar and your teeth

In keeping with our sugar awareness month Donald’s post in Review Ripon this month highlights the problems for our teeth of eating and drinking too much sugar.

Tooth decay and age

Tooth decay can happen at any age. While recent studies have shown that a quarter of five year olds suffer from tooth decay,  a change in lifestyle, eg eating mints to help stop smoking, can cause tooth decay at any age. Tooth decay hurts and is harmful to our overall health so what can be done about it?

Sugar and tooth decay

Sugar affects us all in many ways.  To be fair to sugar, as far as your teeth are concerned, it’s not the sugar that causes the damage it’s the bacteria that occurs naturally in your  mouth that feeds on the sugar creating acids in your mouth that in turn  destroy the enamel of your teeth leading to cavities, decay and ultimately pain and possible tooth loss. The good news is that the body tries to fight these acid attacks using your saliva, the acids leech minerals from the enamel of your teeth and the saliva tries to put minerals back. Unfortunately the more often you eat sugary foods creating these acids the less the saliva can keep up with replacing the lost minerals in your teeth.

There’s a constant battle or tug of war going on in your mouth between the acids attacking your teeth and the saliva trying to repair them and this can be a good way of describing to children what is happening to their teeth when they drink that sugary drink or eat that sticky sweet.

How to help your saliva win the battle?

How often acid attacks occur is one of the biggest problems. Cutting out sugary snacks and drinks between meals can really help-remember to watch out for hidden sugars in fruit juices and dried fruits e.g raisins. Swap sugary snacks for fibrous vegetables or dairy products e.g. cheese or yoghurt, where possible. Chewing fibrous vegetables increases saliva production which helps fight the acids and dairy products contain minerals to help strengthen the teeth. Watch out for hidden sugars in foods such as cereals and salad dressings.

As always the advice to brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes using a fluoride toothpaste will also help by cleaning away bacteria filled plaque and supplying fluoride to help prevent tooth decay.

Follow our blog on our website to see how some of our team attempt to go sugar free for July, or why not join us. Your teeth will thank you for it.

July is sugar awareness month at Clock Tower Dental Care

Various kinds of sugar

As a team we decided to put ourselves to the test and see if we could at least cut down on our sugar intake for the month of July. We knew it was going to be hard- we nearly all have a sweet tooth although we do try on the whole to only have sugary treats at mealtimes- usually lunch it has to be said, and we were right, it is hard! We’re concentrating on lowering our refined sugar intake not the naturally occurring sugars found in milk, fruit etc

So how are we doing? Well it’s day 5, some have already given up although we’re hoping to persuade them to try again as every little helps, one team member has had a day off for her anniversary dinner but is back on it, the majority are still choosing the no sugar or low sugar option where possible.

What have we found so far? Added sugar is everywhere, in salad dressings, cereals, baked beans to name a few. Our tip for today is to make sure you read the label and try the low sugar alternatives where possible or make your own sugar free version instead. One of the team has switched their family onto low sugar beans with no complaints (although she is remaining anonymous to save any potential arguments!

As the month goes on we’ll update you on how we’re doing and let you know if we have any hints,  tips and interesting facts to help you reduce your sugar intake and help your teeth stay healthy.

We’re getting a makeover….

Those of you who have been in to visit us lately will have noticed we’re having a bit of a makeover- the scaffolding’s a bit of a give away really! As you can see we’ve been giving the front of the building a bit of a do. A bit like a smile makeover it started with the decision that the windows needed a bit of TLC. Then the discussion progressed into “well then they’ll need to be repainted” followed by “if the scaffolding’s up anyway the wooden point and mouldings on the attic windows could do with maintenance” and before you know it we’re looking forward to a whole new look – including new front door colour! The first shade wasn’t quite right but hopefully the latest one will look good. We’re anticipating completion this week with the scaffolding coming down on Friday. Watch out for the first team picture to be taken in front of our beautiful building. Many thanks go to Paul Wrightson and John Gallazzi for the fantastic work they’ve done restoring our lovely building.

Want to live longer ? Look after your teeth

In this month’s Review Ripon article Donald looked at the benefits to your overall health to be had by looking after your oral health

National Smile Month is the largest and longest-running campaign in the UK to promote good oral health. The aim of the campaign is to help us achieve good physical and mental wellbeing by improving our oral health. The 3 main messages of the campaign are to brush your teeth last thing at night and on at least once more through the day with a fluoride toothpaste, cut down on how often you have sugary foods and drinks and to visit your dentist regularly, as often as they recommend.

The benefits of good oral health

Keeping our teeth for life

Good oral health can help reduce the risk of tooth loss due to decay or gum disease.

Research has found that the number of teeth we have is strongly linked to how long we will live. Those with 20 teeth or more at the age of 70 had a considerably higher chance of living longer than those with less than 20 teeth. With the proper care your teeth can last you a lifetime.

Reducing the risk of disease

Good oral health means you are less likely to have gum disease. This is important because gum disease can allow the bacteria from our mouth to get into the bloodstream.  This can lead to an increased risk of blood clots forming which in turn results in an increased risk of a heart attack.

Gum disease can also cause inflammation of the blood vessels, blocking the blood supply to the brain, leading to a potential stroke and has been linked to a higher chance of developing diabetes.

Reducing the risk of cancer and dementia

By keeping our teeth and gums healthy we are more likely to reduce our risk of certain cancers, particularly in women, as well as some forms of dementia. New research, on post-menopausal women found those with a history of gum disease were 14% more likely to develop cancer. Those people who have healthy gums are also 70 percent less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease than those who have suffered from gum disease over a long period of time.

Time invested in taking care of your teeth with regular brushing, a good diet and visits to the dentist will be rewarded with a healthy smile and increased overall health and wellbeing.











Introducing our new Tepe chart

In the latest article on dental health, Sam, one of our dedicated team of hygienists, introduces our new tepe chart and explains why tepe brushes are good for your teeth.

“A tepe interdental brush is a tool for cleaning in between teeth to remove plaque and food deposits. It also, just as importantly, stimulates the gums and keeps them healthy. 

They come in a variety of sizes which are coloured coded for easiness and can be washed/rinsed and reused once a day, at any time to keep your whole mouth clean and healthy.

Toothbrushing alone can only removed 60% of debris, so these little brushes are crucial to your daily cleaning regime. Bacteria left behind can cause bad breath, tooth decay and gum disease.

Your dentist or hygienist will size you up for the colours that you will need, it is likely that you may need more than just one. To make keeping track of which colour you need to use and where, we have devised the  colour coded TEPE chart. As you can see in the picture below, which shows a demonstration chart, it shows on a diagram of your mouth what colour of tepe you need to use where.

We can scan this picture into your records so we can use this in the future to monitor, check and resize you at any time. This is also useful for the whole dental team, the dentist knows what instructions we have given you and reception can access this in order to know what colour of brush you may need to purchase not only on the day, but when ever you need to restock.”

We hope you’ll find these charts useful and that they’ll make it easier for you to maintain your dental health between hygiene visits. Please let us know if you find them useful or not by emailing and put tepe in the subject line.

It’s nice to be appreciated

We all know how good it feels to have your hard work appreciated and Hamish was delighted to receive this token of thanks from a grateful patient. In true team spirit Hamish shared the cake with all of us at lunchtime and we can confirm that it tasted as good as it looked. As you can see from the photo Hamish is as skilled and precise at cake cutting as he is at his dentistry.

Meet the team…..

Welcome to our second meet the team and this time it’s the turn of Donald Sloss to introduce himself. (In case you’re wondering about the order of these posts, we put all the names in the hat and picked them out to give everyone a chance to go first!).

“Following on from Stephen last time as the newest member of the team, I’m the longest serving clinical member of the team,  having moved to Ripon in 1991 with my family. I became a dentist after experiencing for myself the difference between bad and good dentistry which also led to a life long interest in helping people overcome their fear of the dentist. Everyone should experience good quality, comfortable dentistry and have the smile they want. I’m honoured this year to have been elected as President of the British Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry which, although it has meant extra work, has given me the opportunity to influence the development of cosmetic dentistry in the UK.

Away from work I enjoy spending time with my family and am a keen golfer when I have the time. We have three large dogs who keep us busy and amused and I’m trying to enjoy gardening in order to help my wife.

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go: I’ve been really lucky to travel a lot having been a dentist with the army originally and since then having attended courses and conferences abroad. My favourite country was probably New Zealand but I’d like to explore Canada, the wilderness appeals.

Seaside or countryside: Seaside as long as it’s a rocky shoreline with good waves

Which celebrity/star would you like to go to dinner with: Billy Connolly would probably be at the top of the list both for his sense of humour and his background. As one Scot to another I think we’d have a good evening.

Meet the Team……

Welcome to our new Monday Meet and Greet slot. We thought it might be nice to introduce ourselves to you so each Monday a different team member will get a chance to briefly introduce themselves and answer some questions- most of which have nothing to do with dentistry. First to do so is our newest clinician, Stephen Taylor.

“I am the post recent dentist to join the Clock Tower Team after arriving in August 2017. I am originally from the other side of the Pennines but moved north to Newcastle to study and work. I then spent a year living and practising dentistry in Australia, which was a fantastic experience and opportunity, before moving to Yorkshire.

I enjoy all aspects of dentistry and love working with patients of all ages, especially anxious patients and children. I have recently completed further training in sedation which enables me to provide sedation to those who need it to help them feel much more at ease and have a much more relaxing, pleasant experience when at the dentist.

Outside of work I love watching and participating in a number of sports especially football, tennis and rugby league- although I’ve moved to Yorkshire my loyalties will always lie with Liverpool and St Helen’s when it comes to sports teams.”

Morning or evening- I am an evening person

Where would you go if you could go anywhere- The Champions League Final in 2005

What would you do less of if you could- housework!

Look out for our another meet and greet next Monday.