Sunderland dentist from Oliver's House wins global rising star award for digital dentistry

An award-winning city dentist has been praised for leading the way in digital dentistry.

Saturday, 8th January 2022, 4:55 am
Oliver's House, Advanced Oral Health Centre associate dentist Salma Ainine is using the latest technology to perfect patients' smiles

Salma Ainine joined Oliver's House Advanced Oral Health Centre in East Herrington in 2018 and in that time has racked up numerous awards and nominations, including being named Best Young Dentist in 2019.

Her latest trophy, the ClearCorrect Global Rising Star Award, recognises her passion for utilising the latest in technology to improve her patients’ smiles.

The international accolade, which came as a surprise, was awarded at a ceremony in Barcelona and celebrated Salma leading the way in using Straumann’s Clear Correct aligners with dental monitoring scan boxes, meaning instead of having to visit the dentist patients can scan their aligner progress at home, using their smartphone and the scan box, and send it to Salma to review.

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Salma scanning a patient's teeth

It also means Salma can make precise adjustments to aligners, which are removable and changed weekly or fortnightly, the kind of tweaks which aren’t afforded with traditional fixed braces.

As well as using scanning in her work with aligners, Salma uses a state-of-the-art CEREC Primescan machine, which cost more than £120,000, to speed up the provision of implant-retained crowns, as well as traditional crowns and fillings.

The CEREC, which stands for Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics, is one of a few used in the country and Salma says it’s really brought dentistry into the 21st century.

Speaking about traditional silver fillings, she said: “The amalgam used in conventional dentistry has been used for more than 100 years and really hasn’t changed much in that time.

Oliver's House MyDentist practice in Durham Road, East Herrington

"But rather than building the crown or filling manually, and layering on the filling, the technology means we can scan a patient’s tooth and the machine will mill a porcelain composite into the exact shape needed, instead of sending a mould to a dental laboratory.

“It’s a lot quicker and more precise and it means we can save more teeth as we can scan right at the back of the mouth, where before it may have been easier to just remove the tooth.

"They also look better as we can colour match the crown to the patient’s natural tooth colour. Our patients have been really happy with the crowns.”

Salma, who developed an interest in combining dentistry with technology when studying at University of Dundee, said: “When we bought the machine three years ago it was one of only eight being used in the country and I’ve not heard of anyone else using it in the North East.”

Salma Ainine using the hi-tech CEREC machine to create an implant

Like all in the healthcare system, Oliver’s has had to adapt to the pandemic and with NHS dental services being difficult to access across the board, the private dentists say they’ve seen an influx of new patients, which has also led to new jobs at the practice including four new dentists, a new hygienist and four new dental nurses.

Still named Oliver’s House after city dentist Michael Oliver who ran the practice for 30 years, it has since been bought by {my}dentist.

Salma, who also specialises in facial aesthetics, said: “It’s got a really good reputation and a lot of people have heard of the practice because of Michael, so when they’ve had problems accessing their NHS dentist, people have been coming to us.”

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The machine mills porcelain composite into shape

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Salma is one of the few dentists in the country to use this type of machine in her dentistry