By: Catherine Willingham
You’re not the only one. Like many people, I had one bad (read: massive rip-off) experience when I first arrived and I’ve also heard ‘on the grapevine’ that many dentists have a quota to meet per patient, so I was totally put off going for ages. Not an ideal strategy when it comes to dental health, I’ll admit!
I’ve got a checklist for any potential new dentist. They need to be amalgam free and offer individual care and attention, with state-of-the-art equipment and (this is key) definitely not charge a ridiculous amount. And another thing, they also need to take the time to really explain things and not be rushing off to their next patient. Basically, I’ve been looking for a dentist I can trust, one who doesn’t see me as a gullible $ sign.
And I’ve found them.
Aesthete Smilestudio, right in the heart of Raffles Place. I actually enjoyed my appointment with them (I know, who can ever say that about visiting a dentist?), and here’s why:
They’re more than a dentist. They’re kind of like a spa too.
They combine the comfort and safety of a traditional clinic with the relaxing atmosphere of a modern contemporary spa. Subdued lighting and a fish tank in the waiting room, soft music and absolutely no flouridey-smell help create a beautifully calm environment. The team was friendly and attentive and happy to answer all my questions.
They want to change the way you feel about visiting the dentist.
They believe each visit should heighten your sense of sight, sound, smell, touch and taste. (Totally unlike the usual pain and anguish I’d expect from a dentist!) When I was filling in the obligatory new patient forms, I was asked which flavoured water I’d like for the cleaning (from a list of twenty-three, I chose green apple) and which flavor I’d like for my fluoride treatment (orange, from a choice of 8).
They’re a Smilestudio- offering treatment & cosmetic dentistry in one place.
Their aim is to create and maintain beautiful smiles offering both dental treatments and cosmetic dentistry. I was just in for a check up (a full oral examination then cleaning, scaling & polishing- with the yummy customized flavored water and fluoride treatment) but Aesthete does all the dental treatments you’d expect including implants, crowns, root canal, gum contouring, and, if you’re after whitening or straight teeth a-la Invisalign, they do this and much more too. They even do wisdom tooth surgery. Check out their full list of treatments here.
They’ve got some seriously impressive digital equipment.
Their x-ray machine is really quick (only 11 seconds!) and emits less radiation than you’d be exposed to flying from Singapore to NYC. These images are then available instantly in the examination room for you and the dentist to talk through together. They combine these with photos of your mouth taken using an intra-oral camera (once you get over seeing an enlarged version of the inside of your mouth on screen, it’s completely fascinating). Then they switch to a 3D-modelling program, creating a model of your teeth from all sorts of angles. All of this info is then recorded in your digital file ready for your next visit.
They use a very snazzy air-polisher for cleaning.
It’s called Prophy Max and it’s not like the old circular ‘car wash’ type cleaners (which actually scratch your teeth). It’s a frequency-controlled digital scaler, powered by air and water, which blasts salt to clean your teeth, removing stains from all surfaces of your tooth without stripping the healthy bits. Yes, you can taste the salt, but it feels sooo much better than the old way!
They have clients, not patients.
‘You’re not sick, you’re at the dentist’ Dr. Thean reminded me. He encouraged me to make an excellent maintenance program a way of life so that I don’t end up needing more invasive (and costly) treatments later on. He suggested x-rays once every two years (or once a year for a high-risk patient) and visits for scaling, polishing and fluoride every four to six months, but this varies depending on your lifestyle. For example, a heavy drinker and smoker would likely need to visit every 2 months to keep things fresh. (Yes, that’s going to add up in the $ department!)
They don’t try and sell you treatments that I don’t need.
Dr Thean told me what was right with my teeth and also what could potentially cause problems later on. But that was it. No tutting about potential procedures. No rambling pretence to try and sell me something crazily expensive. Being in a spa environment, I was absolutely waiting for the whole package thing to rear it’s ugly head. But nothing of the sort.
They’ve found a new client, and I’m raving about them!
I can honestly say that a trip to Aesthete was an enjoyable experience. I left with sparkling clean teeth, a thorough understanding of my oral health and a firm resolution to be back. See you in 6 months Aesthete Team.
Costs (excl GST): Examination $98, Scaling & Polishing $138, Fluoride $48, X-ray $120 (once every two years, or one a year for a high-risk patient).
Aesthete Smilestudio Pte Ltd
24 Raffles Place, #02-04 Clifford Centre, Singapore 048621
+65 6438 3811