Teeth staining & Corsodyl

Dr Ana Polidoro offers her advice on treating stained teeth.

Ana is available to offer teeth cleaning and other dental services in Holborn and Bank.

If you have any questions click here to email Ana

London dentist Holborn Bank Dr Ana Polidoro


Did you know Corsodyl mouthwash can stain your teeth?
We often see clients complaining of stained teeth. Stains can appear on your teeth if you frequently drink tea, coffee, and red wine or if you smoke cigarettes, amongst other causes. However, most people are not aware that chlorhexidine gluconate containing mouthwashes can also be a cause of teeth stains.

dental products


Some advertisement campaigns can be very misleading. Corsodyl ads claim to treat gum disease from the very first signs, which make people think their gums will become healthier just by using a mouthwash. In fact, gum problems are caused by plaque – a film of bacteria which forms on the surface of the teeth every day. Plaque has to be cleaned mechanically by brushing and flossing (or using interdental brushes). Should plaque not be removed on a daily basis, it will lead to the inflammation of the gums and bleeding. Once plaque hardens we call it calculus, which can only be removed with a professional teeth cleaning.

Corsodyl mouthwash does help to combat the plaque bacteria which cause gum disease, but it would be best used only when advised by a dentist. In such cases, patients are warned to avoid food and drinks which contain tannins, such as tea or coffee, especially for the first hour after use as to minimize the risk of staining.

teeth cleaning


Luckily corsodyl staining is not permanent and it can be removed with a thorough cleaning session, most of the times requiring the use of airflow (sodium hydrogencarbonate powder) used as part the Smilepod High Gloss Diamond Polish teeth cleaning and stain removal treatment.

If you have bleeding gums or stained teeth, your Smilepod London dentist can help!

Book to see Dr Ana Polidoro

Five Facts About Bad Breath

Bad breath is something most people have experienced but what do you really know about the causes? At Smilepod we reveal five things you need to know about bad breath

Bad breath causes

1 It’s common
Bad breath is nothing to be ashamed of- it affects one in four people regularly and, for the most part, is very easy to treat.

2. It’s often food related
Bad breath usually occurs when small pieces of food are stuck in the teeth. An unpleasant odour is released as bacteria begin to break down these pieces of food.

3. You can detect it yourself
Understandably most people would be uncomfortable asking someone if you’ve got bad breath, here’s a tip: lick your wrist and wait a couple of minutes for the saliva to dry. Once dry you should be able to smell for yourself.

4. Garlic and cigarettes are common culprits
As anyone who’s been on a date will know, bad breath is sometimes caused by the types of food you are eating. Strong smelling foods such as onion, garlic and spices will take longer to digest so an odour will remain. Cigarettes and alcohol will have a similar effect.

5. It can suggest dental problems
Bad breath can be a sign of a number of medical conditions including gum disease, dental cavities, dry mouth or an oral yeast infection. Sometimes illnesses in other parts of the body can cause bad breath including gastrointestinal, liver and kidneys problems. If you are concerned, give us a ring and we will be able to advise you.

bad breath causes 2

Regular hygiene cleans can keep bad breath at bay so if you are worried then just book into one of our seven Central London dental studios and we will advise you on oral health techniques and leave your teeth clean and fresh

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How to floss

Flossing your teeth – Smilepod London dentists share their tips and tricks

We all know that flossing is just as important as brushing our teeth as it removes plaque from areas a toothbrush just can’t reach like in between teeth and under the gum line. But flossing can seem like such a chore and is often easily forgotten. To help, we’ve come up with a few tips on how to floss properly.

1. Flossing should be done at least once a day, especially before going to bed. Try leaving the floss somewhere visible so it cannot be missed. Think about putting it next to your bedside table or near your toothbrush.

2. To start flossing, wind about 12-18cm of floss around you forefinger, leaving a few extra centimetres to work with.

3. Holding firmly with your thumb, slide the floss in between the tooth and gently move it in an “up-and-down” motion. This is important as it is the most effective way of removing the build up of plaque. Lean the floss against your teeth not the gums.  Gently curve the floss around the base of the tooth, making sure you clean under the gum line. Repeat this action for each tooth using a new section of the floss.

4. Remove the floss by bringing it up and away from the teeth.

Still having trouble?

If you are still struggling with your flossing techniques, maybe you should try floss picks… They are just as good and you don’t need to spend the time winding the floss around your finger.

You might also want to try interdental brushes which can be combined with flossing. They will remove plaque from the backs of your teeth and from small gaps which are often quite hard to reach with regular floss. They come in a number of different sizes so when you next come to Smilepod be sure to ask your dentist.

If you still aren’t able to floss every day, minimise the level of bacteria and plaque deposits around your teeth by using the Philips Sonicare Airfloss. It’s a quick and effective way to remove soft plaque and combines the brushing and flossing process. This is a far better option than skipping flossing all together.

Remember: daily flossing reduces plaque build-up which means less chance of you getting tooth decay or gum disease!

Did you know:

According to the British Heart Foundation (March 2012), ‘Good oral hygiene can help to protect you against endocarditis’ (inflammation to the lining of the heart). As you can see, it’s really important to clean your teeth every day and to visit your dentist regularly.


British heart foundation (March 2012) ‘Brushing your teeth – stops heart disease’

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Teeth cleaning at Smilepod

What happens during a dental hygiene treatment?

Clients often want more information about what happens during hygiene treatments so Becky, the manager of our Bank Studio (Leadenhall Market), has prepared a step by step guide to what to expect during our Classic Clean (scale & polish) treatment so you know what to expect from the moment you step through the door.P6023150_edited-1

All of our dental hygiene treatments are available without referrals saving you time.

Although your hygiene clean will be carried out by one of our friendly dentists there will be no dental work during this treatment.

We understand that nervous clients can find visiting the dentist traumatic and aim to ensure every stage is fully explained to you.

Do remember that if you are nervous, you can ask your dentist to stop at any point as you are always the one in control.

becky for website1

As soon as you arrive at one of the Central London Smilepod dental studios one of the managers will greet you.

In the case of Bank Smilepod ( nr Leadenhall Market) , our friendly manager Becky willgreet you and help you feel at ease.

If it’s your first time visiting Smilepod, Becky will ask you to fill out a short ‘confidential customer questionnaire’ for your dentist.

It’s important that we have these details to confirm your address and to note any allergies you might have (such as to latex or penicillin) and to ensure the dentist you see can provide the best possible care for you..


It’s always a good idea to arrive a few minutes early for your appointment and Becky will be happy to make you a tea or coffee whilst you complete your form.

You will then meet one of our fantastic dentists (Dr Veronia De Zan is pictured) who will take you into one of the pods for your treatment.

The dentist will read through your questionnaire and ask you some general questions for example about your previous dental history and lifestyle habits so they can best advise you.


The dentist will then sit you back in a comfortable dental chair, provide you with safety glasses (to block any spray) and then start the cleaning treatment.

The Classic (clean & polish) begins with scaling which carefully removes all the plaque and tartar build up using an ultra-sonic scaler and hand scalers.

The ultra-sonic scaler squirts water into your mouth whist the dentist cleans around your teeth and you will feel slight vibrations. If any discomfort occurs, let the dentist know so they can make it as comfortable as possible for you.

Your dentist will gently clear away all of the debris from around the teeth and under your gums using these methods.

Once all the plaque and tartar has been removed, your dentist will then polish all of your teeth using our special prophy paste to give your teeth a lovely silky feeling.The polishing can feel very tickly on the teeth and gums.

P6093407_edited-1Once the cleaning is complete, the dentist will talk you through different ways to maintain good oral hygiene such as flossing and using an electric toothbrush.

Once the treatment is over the dentist will sit you up in the chair, give you the chance to rinse your mouth and then hand you a mirror so you can have a look at your lovely clean teeth!

Is it scary?

The Classic Clean is not scary at all. All of our hygiene cleaning treatments here at Smilepod are carried out by professional and friendly dentists who make sure the treatments you receive are enjoyable and stress free.

How will my teeth feel afterwards? 

P6023226_edited-1After the Classic Clean you’ll feel like you have had a new lease of life. Your teeth will feel silky smooth and your tongue wont be able to leave them alone!

Why are regular cleans important?

Cleaning your teeth regularly is the most effective way of keeping your mouth looking and smelling healthy.  It also helps to prevent tooth decay, gum disease and bad breath.
Healthy teeth and gums will give you a more confident smile, make you feel good and also enable you to speak and eat properly.

A good daily oral hygiene routine with adequate brushing and flossing techniques will prevent teeth or gums problems from starting or developing further.


Seeing your dentist regularly for early detection of problems is also very important.

Should you have any other questions or concerns contact Becky directly

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Dental Hygiene and diet

Dr Zara Fernandez discusses the importance of diet and healthy teeth

The foods you choose and how often you eat them can affect your general health and the health of your teeth and gums, too.

london dental images

If you consume too many sugar-filled sodas, sweetened fruit drinks or non-nutritious snacks between meals, you could be at risk for tooth decay.
Brushing and flossing is very important but diet and the frequency of sugar exposure is the key factor.
Every time you consume drinks or foods containing sugars the PH level in your mouth becomes highly acidic, creating a perfect environment for the bacteria which cause cavities.
It takes around 40 minutes for your mouth to regain a safe PH level again.
So the more you are snacking between meals the more often your mouth will be subjected to high levels of acid. My tip is to avoid having sugary snacks between meals and if you need to have something, the healthiest options would be water or a sugar free chewing gum.
With regular dental care, we can help prevent oral problems from occurring in the first place and catch those that do occur in the early stages, while they are easy to treat.

If you want to know more about keeping your mouth healthy book to see Zara at Smilepod

Book to see Zara

Dental hygiene and orthodontics

Braces and dental hygiene

Good dental hygiene is essential when you are undergoing orthodontic treatment as you will be more susceptible to developing a dental problem than usual. This post will run through the basics, but if you have any questions just mention it to your Smilepod dentist at your next appointment and we can advice you.

Bad breath causes

Why it’s important

  • When you are wearing braces you are more likely to get small pieces of food stuck in your teeth. This will lead to a build up of plaque that can cause problems such as bad breath, gum disease and dental cavities.
  • If you wearing braces or a retainer you need to make sure that they are kept in good condition so they can work their magic and give you the smile of your dreams.

Looking after your braces

When you are cleaning your teeth with braces you need to be vigorous to remove unwanted plaque and careful not to damage your braces. Getting this balance right will take some practice and these tips should get you off to a good start:

  • Try using a soft bristled tooth brush. These are better at getting into those hard to reach places than those with medium or hard bristles. Electric toothbrushes are fine to use, but be careful not to loosen any wires. If you are having trouble you could try a special toothbrush for braces.
  • Start brushing your teeth three times a day- once after each meal- to make sure there are no bits of food stuck in your teeth or brace. If you’ve eaten and can’t brush your teeth, try rinsing your mouth thoroughly with water.
  • Make sure you are taking the time to brush properly, we recommend 2-2.5 minutes. Using a timer can help you keep on track.
  • Flossing can be a real challenge when you are wearing braces, but it’s extremely important to persist. Speak with your dentist for advice on flossing and to find out more about special flossing instruments you could use.
  • Use disclosing tablets to check how thorough you’ve been. They will show any areas you’ve been missing.
  • Watch what you are eating as some foods are more likely to get stuck in your teeth or damage your braces. Either avoid or take extra care when eating sticky or hard foods such as caramel or sweets.

ortho blog

Looking after your retainer

Removable retainers also need to be kept clean. You can use toothpaste and a toothbrush to do this, although, just like with braces, you need to be careful not to damage them. There are also some special cleaning solutions you can use but speak to your dentist about these. Don’t use hot water as it may distort the shape of your retainer.


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How to treat bad breath

Bad breath isn’t just anti-social, it’s our mouth’s way of telling us that we aren’t taking care of our teeth and gums. Realising that you have bad breath is a good reason to start taking oral hygiene seriously- and no- mints and chewing gum won’t hack it.

bad breath treatment2

So if you are worried about bad breath we have prepared some quick and simple ways for you to tackle bad breath.

Good oral hygiene
Ensure you are brushing for at least three minutes twice a day. We recommend an electric toothbrush such as Phillips Sonicare to remove all the build up of bacteria. Flossing twice a day is essential as this can remove pieces of trapped food leading to odours

Regular dental checks and cleans
Fight bad breath by keeping up to date with your regular dental appointments and cleans as this is one of the surest ways to prevent bad breath. A deep clean will remove any remnants of food and bacteria from places which are difficult to reach with even the best flossing techniques.

Drink and chew
Drinking water regularly can keep your mouth moist. Equally, chewing (sugarless) gum will stimulate the production of saliva which will help wash away any nasty bacteria and food remains.

Avoid smelly foods and cigarettes
Be aware of what you put in your mouth. Sometimes keeping a food diary can help you identify the cause of your bad breath. Whether it’s a particular type of pungent food or cigarettes that are causing the problem, the first step towards a cure is identifying the cause.

See your dentist
If your bad breath problem is persisting, you are up to date with your dental visits and you have been maintaining a rigorous dental routine, we recommend that you come and see your dentist. Your dentist will be able to advise you on alternative treatments and diagnose any further conditions.

bad breath treat3

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Save the world brushing your teeth

Brushing your teeth tips

Saving the world is not usually on most people’s to-do lists. However, it might surprise you to learn that it’s not as hard as it sounds.


In fact, everyone has the opportunity to do so everyday. How? Well, the vast majority of people leave the tap on while they brush their teeth. Though this is only for a short amount of time, collectively it adds up.

Leaving the tap running wastes up to 9 litres of water per minute, so turning the tap off when brushing can save 12-18 litres per time. This is a huge waste of water that can be avoided – it’s a bit like having your toilet flush running the whole time you’re on it.

This is a practical tip to help save money and the environment whilst taking care of your teeth. Imagine how much water could be saved if everyone read this post?

Sometimes a simple change in daily habits can have a huge impact. So next time you’re cleaning your teeth, remember to turn that tap off

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The power of a good teeth clean

Lauren Holmes, one of our London Smilepod dentists, discusses the power of a good teeth clean:


One of my clients has just left my studio a little teary eyed. Not because I have been a heavy handed or unkind dentist or because I have provided her with a life changing smile makeover, but simply because the power of a good clean changes how she feels.

Like many of us, my client enjoys her share of coffee, tea and red wine and hadn’t been flossing twice a day. This inevitably resulted in a build-up of calculus on the teeth and around the gum margin which led to stains, looked unsightly and encouraged a build up of bacteria. This ultimately has had an impact on the health of the teeth and the supporting gum and bone.

As the appearance and general feel of her teeth gradually worsened over time, the client admitted that she lost the motivation to floss regularly. She finally decided to do something about it as she was preparing for a family holiday to visit her sister. She wanted to get back that ‘clean teeth’ feeling before heading off as well as to re-start her flossing and cleaning routine.

Make your smile dazzle

During the treatment I went out of my way to ensure she didn’t feel embarrassed about her situation. I have a gentle approach so she was able to open up and feel comfortable. We talked about the reasons for the build up of calculus and staining and ways she could prevent it in the future. I also carefully checked the health of the teeth, gently probing the gums and explaining the consequences of not removing the calculus regularly. One of the biggest risks is Periodontitis (gum disease) which is a leading cause of tooth loss.

As a dentist, I enjoy providing complex restorative treatments, root canals and aesthetic dentistry. I thrive off providing high quality treatments which make a big difference to the health and appearances of my clients. Having said that, it can be equally rewarding to take the time with clients to help them improve their oral hygiene, both through cleaning treatments and advice.

Our Moorgate studio

The unique thing about Smilepod is that all hygiene cleans are carried out by fully qualified dentists. This means that we are able to discuss and advise on all dental needs including check-ups, treatments and cosmetic dentistry (such as Invisalign – the clear alternative to braces). In our team, we have a number of dental specialists and are very international, bringing expertise from all over the world to the heart of London.

I find that providing cleaning treatments for clients allows me to develop a good rapport and helps make them feel comfortable with me before undertaking more complex treatment.  A clean, healthy mouth also provides the best foundation for an exam or restorative treatment, improving success rates and longevity of the treatments carried out. It is good practice to have a hygiene treatment before undertaking any dental work.

cleaningAs she was leaving, my client told me that she felt like she had a brand new mouth. She also shared how she had previously felt embarrassed about the look of her stained teeth when talking to people. Part of the reason she had been neglecting herself was because of having a small child but the treatment helped to rejuvenate her and motivate her to look after her oral hygiene. A simple cleaning treatment clearly provided a psychological benefit.  After the treatment, I felt that wonderful sense of job satisfaction that gets me out of bed every day. It’s so amazing to know how much can be achieved with a simple clean!

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Which mouthwash to use

With so many dental care products on the market today, how can you know which ones to use? At Smilepod our dentists and dental team will happily recommend the right products for you.


Read on to discover some useful facts from our dentists which will help you choose.

Smilepod Soho Manager Angi looks at some popular mouthwash options.

Angi is a trained dental nurse who runs our Soho Smilepod Studio in the heart of Central London.

Angi is fluent in English and Hungarian and is passionate about providing high quality dental care. If you stop by the studio, Angi would be more than happy to advise you on the best dental products for keeping your teeth and gums healthy.


If you are cavity prone:

Prevent cavities using mouthwash containing fluoride. Fluoride is a mineral naturally found in water and soil which coats the teeth with a protective film that strengthens tooth enamel. It helps to make your teeth stronger and more resistant to decay.

Fluoride is the only mouthwash ingredient that has been proven to prevent cavities. But it doesn’t protect against gum disease. Unfortunately, antibacterial ingredients are not compatible with fluoride so it’s not possible to have an ‘all-in-one’ mouthwash.

One very effective fluoride mouthwash, recommended by our Smilepod Dentists, is Fluoriguard (in its alcohol free version).

If you have gingivitis or periodontitis:

Fight gingivitis-causing germs with a prescription mouthwash.

Clinical trials have shown that chlorhexidine, the active ingredient in prescription mouthwashes, has much stronger antibacterial properties than the ingredients in over-the-counter brands such as Corsodyl or Curasept.

Note: Chlorhexidine can stain teeth, so it’s only recommended for short courses of treatment. Your Smilepod dentist will advise you on how long to use it for, which is generally for up to three weeks.

If your teeth do stain from using this product, don’t worry. Any staining can be removed by a thorough clean at one of our London Smilepod Studios. Ask for our High Gloss Diamond Polish cleaning treatment which will leave your teeth sparkling.

If you have irritated gums:

Stop the spread of infection. Colgate’s Peroxyl mouthwash is available at all our Smilepod Studios. This type of mouthwash contains an active ingredient called Hydrogen Peroxide which is good for stopping the spread of infection.

When Peroxyl comes into contact with mouth tissue, oxygen is released in a bubbling action which provides mechanical cleansing to flush out mouth debris and help with the relief of oral irritation.

Your dentist will advise you on the length of time for treatment, but generally it should not exceed two weeks. If you are unsure, pop into one of the Smilepod Studios where we can advise you further.


If you are concerned about bad breath or gum disease:


We all know bad breath can be embarrassing and when it comes to gum disease, prevention is better than cure. If you have any concerns, a good solution is an antibacterial formula which will fight bad breath, plaque and gingivitis.

Listerine, Corsodyl Daily and other products that contain thymol, eucalyptol, methyl salicylate, and menthol are the only over-the-counter antibacterial mouthwashes which effectively reduce gum disease and plaque.

Antibacterial formulas can reduce the bacteria count in the mouth by an average of 75% and many of these mouthwashes are available in pharmacies as well as our London Smilepod Studios.

We recommend that you regularly use mouthwash to maintain good oral health.

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