Dr. Teki Sowdani, diamond Invisalign provider and celebrity cosmetic dentist shares his expert advice to ensure the best possible journey to a perfect smile.
How did you get into dentistry?
I did work experience in quite a few different things, one of which was at a dentist, I was really inspired by the way the dentist treated his patients, he was very kind and chatty and the patients really loved being there. This was really different to my childhood experience of the dentist - I had a lot of treatment when younger and wasn’t ever scared of the dentist. But equally never imagined myself to be doing that as a job.
What does a typical day look like for you?
Over the years I have learnt when I am most productive, and I am definitely not a morning person! I have recently started going to the gym before work, which has made me feel more energised throughout the day. So I start a bit later - 10am, starting with a short appointment - maybe a review or consultation. Then I like to do a big case - composite bonding for example - before lunch and after lunch. As this is when I am most focussed. Then I like to finish the day with a few shorter appointments, similar to the morning appointments. We usually finish around 7pm as working in London and going home to Essex it’s good to avoid peak travel times.
What is the difference between composite bonding and porcelain veneers? Porcelain veneers are made in a lab, where they are created by a dental technician after being designed by the dentist. They are then fitted onto the patients teeth- most of the time after some preparation (shaving down) of the teeth. Composite bonding is when we are using white filling material to bond (glue) onto the tooth, this is done directly in the patients mouth, and usually means no preparation or filing down of the teeth.
How long does composite bonding last?
Composite bonding typically lasts 5-7 years, however this could be a lot shorter or a lot longer depending on how well the patient maintains it. Things that will help composite to last longer are; cleaning well, and flossing, visiting hygienist on regular basis and wearing retainer while you sleep.
Are there different types of composite bonding?
Yes, some dentists break down composite bonding into edge bonding - where composite material is just added to edges of the tooth for example where it is chipped or worn down. Composite veneers - some dentists refer to when they are covering the entire surface of the tooth in composite material. I prefer to just use the term Composite Bonding to keep things simple, and in many cases patients may have a combination of these two methods.
How long does the average person need to wear Invisalign for?
Most Invisalign cases are completed within 6-12 months. The shortest cases are 3-4 months, and some really complex cases can take up to three years.
What is the most popular cosmetic procedure your clients choose?
Composite bonding, many of those that have Invisalign actually came in wanting composite bonding, however their teeth needed to be straightened beforehand to achieve a nicer looking and longer lasting result. It is a pain free and healthier way to achieve the look you want.
What is your favourite transformation story and why?
When I feel like I have made a difference to that patients life, in some cases people perceive their smile as a barrier if they are self-conscious about it. So there is nothing nicer than for me to see a patient after a few months or years and seeing them happy in life and knowing their smile has contributed to that.
You have such a long wait list; do you have any plans to expand so you can see more clients?
Yes, we have always been aware that there are lots of patients that are waiting, who have been recommended by patients who have been so happy with their results. And in my opinion that’s the best way to find a dentist. However, I have to balance taking on new patients with ensuring they receive the quality, care and attention they deserve. As the team has naturally grown over the past year or so, we will hopefully be in a position to expand by the end of this year.
Are there any new treatments / trends coming out soon?
The trends are still strongly based around improving your smile without damaging your teeth. But what has definitely changed over the past few years are the materials available to dentists to achieve nicer results that last longer. Newer composites that are whiter, stain less and stronger will all be coming soon.
When choosing a dentist what should be taken into consideration?
Ultimately a dentist is a healthcare professional, and the word ‘care’ is really important. I would always choose a dentist that cares about you, listens to your concerns aswell as a dentist who is specialised in the treatment that you’re after. Nowadays with Instagram it’s great because you can see the dentists work and get a feel for the type of person they are, before even your first visit.
What are the biggest myth busters when it comes to cosmetic dental work?
1. That Invisalign is the same with any dentist. Invisalign is a type of brace, but how that brace is used, and the result achieved, is down to the skill and expertise of the dentist.
2. That Invisalign doesn’t work. Invisalign has developed so much over the years and now it has reached a point where it can correct every type of orthodontic problem.
3. Composite bonding is completely reversible. Some patients go into composite bonding thinking that if they don’t like it they can just have it removed, and it’s not as simple as that. When we bond composite onto teeth it is not designed to be removed we want it to last as long as possible. To remove composite from a tooth without scratching or scuffing the tooth is extremely difficult. So it is extremely important to be sure that composite bonding is the right treatment for you, and to see a dentist who can deliver the bonding to your expectations.
4. Porcelain veneers are bad. Porcelain veneers are an important and great treatment if used in the right situation. In certain cases something more hard wearing and stain resistant might be required. Also, the teeth don’t need to be shaved down into pegs. Porcelain veneers can be done with a lot less shaving down of the tooth than you might think.
Have you ever seen any botch jobs that you have had to fix?
Now that the demand for composite is through the roof, there are lots of dentists who may not have had the right training, or expertise doing bonding on teeth that aren’t straight. This then leads to lots of staining, and potentially decay.
What is your ultimate goal for teeth by teki?
I would love to be considered one of the most popular dentists in the UK based around our two core values quality and kindness.
For more information visit - (@teeth_by_teki)
All photos from Teeth By Teki.