A dentist recommending chocolate? Yes, that’s right, the news you always wanted to hear!

Recent studies emerging from Japan, England, and the U.S. support the fact that chocolate is actually an effective ingredient in fighting cavities, plaque, and tooth decay.

I must interject though at this point before you go and grab the closest bar of Galaxy or Dairy Milk that we are referring to high quality dark chocolate. Milk chocolate we can’t be so positive about!

And is the crux of this good news. Compounds in chocolate may be more effective at fighting decay than fluoride. Researchers are predicting that one day, the compound found in chocolate called CBH will be used in mouthwashes and toothpaste – how crazy is this!?!
Tooth decay occurs when bacteria in the mouth turn sugar into acids, which eat away at the tooth’s surface and cause cavities. Compounds in the cocoa bean husk have an anti-bacterial effect and also are anti acids fighting against plaque. This makes chocolate less harmful than many other sweet foods your dentist might warn you against because the antibacterial agents in cocoa beans offset its high sugar levels.

This research has even revealed that the cocoa extract is more effective than fluoride in fighting cavities. This compound has been proven effective in the animal model, but it will it will take another two to four years before the product is approved for human use and available for sale (in the form of mouthwashes and toothpastes) – so don’t get excited just yet.

Now, before you reach for your favourite chocolatey snack, read on…

For the best therapeutic effect (yes, I’m still talking about chocolate), it’s best to chew on cacao nibs. Most will find this option pretty bad to taste!

The second best choice, is dark chocolate with less than 6-8 grams of sugar per serving – organic if possible. Be aware that chocolate is a calorie-rich food, so modify your calorie intake accordingly.

Do all of this for your teeth, but you can actually enjoy the other benefits dark chocolate offers to boot – mood elevation and better blood flow!

With the recent findings, it’s now more true than ever, that chocolate is a superfood. Chocolate has over 300 chemical compounds in it, making it one of the most complex foods we know of, and I predict that many new compounds in chocolate beneficial to us will surface over time and cement its nutritional five star rating.


Anyone who has been to St Stephens Dental Practice will know it looks a little different and eye catching inside.

The practice is brightly decorated, comfortable and welcoming.

Owner Martin Southon is very keen on art of all types so there is quite a differing array on display. He has tried to make the practice seem much less clinical and intimidating than most dental practices.

The waiting room and surgeries feature original paintings by Lin Broadley and Issy Richardson, brass frog sculptures by Tim Cotterill and Geckoman and photos by Barry Amos. There are vintage post cards and images of dentistry in the past.

There are a wide selection of up to date magazines and televisions in the waiting room and surgeries showing interesting “ambient” programs.
In the waiting room there is an old restored dental chair and drill to show how far dentistry has moved on. But the most original and unusual item on show is a new arrival.

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It is a wood carving of an upper molar tooth nearly 2 feet tall and carved from a single piece of walnut wood. This is the result of a commission from local sculptor and wood carver, Daniel Hilton. The idea came to Martin when he was treating Daniel. This is one of the most unusual things he has created and is very tactile and a true work of art. The tooth is very accurately replicated and is completely eye catching. It is completely one of a kind.

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If you like Daniels work you can see more on his website, and to speak to him either Email at or phone on 07852984598.

To book an appointment at St Stephens Dental Practice please call on 01227 452668 or Email at or just drop in if you would like to have a look at the artwork on show.

St Stephens Dental Practice where we will give you the confidence to smile.


It turns out that keeping your breath fresh every day could be even easier than you thought if you do this one simple thing every morning… but can you guess what?
New research has suggested drinking a glass of water first thing in the morning is an effective way of reducing morning breath!

At St.Stephens Dental Practice, we followed the research published in the ‘International Journal of Dental Hygiene’ which showed drinking or rinsing the mouth with a glass of water helped remove up to 60 per cent of the substances which contribute to bad breath!

As Martin Southon, dentist at St.Stephens Dental Practice explained “A glass of water in the morning can aid in washing away bacteria. This bacteria can be the cause of bad breath. However, please bear in mind this is NOT a solution, only an aid”

“The best way to beat bad breath effectively is to ensure that you have an good oral health routine. This should involve brushing your teeth last thing at night and at least one other time during the day with a fluoride toothpaste. You should also floss or use small brushes to clean between your teeth at least once a day”

If you want to be sure you have a good oral hygiene routine, give us a call on 01227 452668. Make an appointment to see to see one of our friendly dentists who can help give advice and tips on how to keep your mouth healthy!

Not sure if your breath smells bad?

Try this simple tip – Just lick the inside of your wrist, wait for it to dry and then sniff the area. If the smell is bad, you can be fairly sure that your breath is too!

Other medical conditions that cause bad breath include infections in the throat, nose or lungs, sinusitis, and bronchitis. Diabetes and liver and kidney problems can also contribute . If you want to get to the route of your bad breath, make sure you visit us at , as we can help you uncover these problems. The earlier the causes are found, the more effective the treatment will be.

So remember, water is an essential part of the diet and has many benefits for oral health so having a glass of water in the morning is a good idea for more reasons than just quenching your thirst.

I hope this helped and remember to like our Facebook page for more amazing tips! 🙂