Dental hygiene is a very important part of keeping a healthy smile.
Allyson and Vicci our hygienists are specifically trained in the prevention of periodontal (gum) disease and dental cavities. They are keen to re- educate patients with regards to the use of toothbrushes, electronic aids, dental floss and inter-dental brushes.
Your hygienist will carefully examine and chart your teeth and gums noting in particular: inflammation, bleeding, swelling, and the presence of plaque and calculus. She will remove plaque and surface stains by gentle scraping, polishing and high-tech prophyflex power sprays.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q - What is dental hygiene?
A – Dental Hygiene is also known as Oral Hygiene and is the action of cleaning the teeth, gums, and tongue according to recommended dental practices for healthy oral wellbeing that prevents tooth decay and gum disease, and gives a fresh smelling breath.
Q - What dental treatments fall under dental hygiene?
A – Dental Hygiene treatments include teeth cleaning by recommended brushing techniques or use of electric brushes, scaling to remove plaque and tartar, teeth whitening to remove tooth stains and give whiter looking teeth, polishing for brighter looking teeth, flossing to remove plaque build-up, use of antiseptic mouthwash, and dental diagnostic and treatment services. These services may include gum care, filling cavities, root canal treatments, fitting crowns and bridges, or shaping the teeth with veneers for protection and enhanced appearance. Education and guidance for healthy dental practices also falls under dental hygiene, as do emergency treatments for injury to the mouth, gums and jaw.
Q - Why is dental hygiene important?
A – The importance of dental hygiene cannot be stressed enough on a number of levels: for healthy teeth and gums that prevents tooth decay and gum disease; for prevention of illnesses such as hypertension and heart disease; to reduce discomfort and pain from damaged teeth and gums; for whiter teeth and a brighter smile; for improved appearance and enhanced confidence; and for learning about your physical oral make-up and how vital this is especially for first impressions when meeting others. Bad breath or stained and broken teeth can be off-putting to people when interviewing for jobs or meeting potential partners. Dental hygiene also helps you understand the benefits of a healthy diet, such as fruits, vegetables, high-fibre foods, and milk; and balanced life-style, such as not smoking tobacco or reducing intake and protection in high-contact sports, that improves overall wellbeing.
Q - How can I learn more about dental hygiene?
A – Our resident dentist is trained in oral hygiene and will advise you on how best to take care of your teeth and the treatments that you may need. The Internet also has vast resources for learning more about your teeth and gums, and so do books at the library. Feel free to bring your questions with you to your next appointment.
Q - How often should I clean my teeth?
A – Teeth should be cleaned with fluoride toothpaste and a brush or electric brush according to the recommended brushing technique when waking up and before sleeping at night. It’s also good to combine this cleaning with mouthwash rinses to get rid of all food and bacteria that may collect between the teeth. Flossing once a week serves a similar purpose and so does chewing sugar-free gum after meals.
Q - What are the best daily methods for healthy oral hygiene?
A – The most recommended daily methods are brushing of teeth with fluoride toothpaste in a gentle circular motions. The proper technique is sometimes best achieved with an electric brush designed for this purpose. Rinsing with mouthwash is also advisable after teeth cleaning. Chewing sugar-free gum after snacks and mealtimes can help prevent buildup of plaque and bacteria from trapped food. If you feel discomfort in your mouth on a particular day, it is better to contact our resident dentist for advice, and especially if you have incurred an injury to your mouth. Leaving damaged teeth and gums can cause tooth loss and gum disease that can affect your overall health.
Q - How regularly should I see a dentist?
A – Unless you need specific dental treatment as advised by your dentist or if you have had an injury to your teeth, gums or jaw, it is safe to visit your dentist every six months. Our resident dentist can schedule these appointments for you ahead of time to ensure that your dental hygiene needs are met.
Q - What can affect my dental hygiene?
A – A number of things can affect your dental hygiene in positive and negative ways. By seeing our resident dentist regularly as per scheduled appointments, by following oral hygiene guidelines for dental health and seeking advice, by avoiding habits such as tobacco that stain the teeth and delay gum healing, or sugary foods that can cause decay, you can prevent plaque buildup and tartar that embeds in your teeth and gums resulting in swelling and bleeding that leads to tooth loss, decay and gum disease.
Taking care when exercising or when doing combat sports such as hockey, boxing, or football, by wearing protective mouth guards to reduce risk of injury that can affect your overall dental and physical wellbeing is also important. Seeing your doctor to check your health, such as for diabetes or osteoporosis, that can also contribute to reduced dental health is recommended. Also notify your dentist of medications that you take, such as antibiotics, which can cause tooth deterioration. If you are unsure about what affects your dental hygiene, contact our practice for advice from our resident dentist.
Q - What costs are associated with dental hygiene?
A – The cost of dental hygiene treatments can depend on quite a few things, like where you are located and the dental practice you choose to attend, the available treatments and those recommended for you, and especially the condition of your teeth and gums or what you would like done cosmetically to improve your appearance for more confidence and a brighter smile. There are many treatments available for your needs, and you can contact our resident dentist to find out about these treatments, costs and payment plans.
Q - How can my dental hygiene affect my overall health?
A – Keeping abreast of your dental hygiene needs and seeing that you follow recommended guidelines for optimal oral health is imperative for reducing the likelihood of gum disease that can spread infection to the rest of your body. People with diabetes, osteoporosis, hypertension, and who play sports regularly, can be at greater risk of damage to their teeth, gums and jaw. Early onset of poor dental health or injury can be easily treated at a reasonable cost before more advanced and expensive treatment is needed both dentally and medically from health deterioration, such as broken bones and heart disease.
Some people severely lack confidence because of the quality of their teeth, which affects their smile and also the impressions that they make on others. Good dental hygiene and treatments can be appearance-transforming and build up self-esteem and make others wish they had your white, bright and beautiful teeth and smile. Often people choose tooth whitening, veneers, or facial reconstruction to help them step up in the career they desire. Dental health can not only affect physical health, but mental health too that is vital to enjoying a happy life.