Taking care of your teeth can not only give you a winning smile but is important for your overall health. A healthy mouth will help you eat well, feel confident and look great. We all know the importance of regular dental check-ups but did you know the benefits of visiting your dental hygienist?
What is a dental hygienist?
Dental hygienists are professional clinicians who work alongside your dentist to help you maintain a healthy mouth and smile. Your dental hygienist will teach you how to look after your teeth and gums, and will tailor-make an oral hygiene regime specific to your needs. Our hygienist Louise plays a crucial role in prevention and treatment of gum disease.
What are the signs of gum disease?
The first sign is blood on the toothbrush or in the rinsing water when you clean your teeth. Gums may also bleed when eating, leaving a bad taste in the mouth. Your breath may also become unpleasant. Gum disease is a leading cause of tooth loss.
If gum disease is discovered and diagnosed early it can be successfully treated. However, if left untreated gum disease can progress, causing disease of the bone and tissues supporting the teeth (periodontitis). Periodontitis is more severe and can cause tooth loss.
Why is oral hygiene important?
Good oral hygiene helps to prevent dental problems – mainly plaque and calculus which are the main causes of gum disease and caries (tooth decay). Good oral hygiene may also help to prevent or delay dental erosion.
- Dental plaque is a soft whitish deposit that forms on the surface of teeth. It forms when bacteria (germs) combine with food and saliva. Plaque contains many types of bacteria and will cause gum disease if not remove effectively. You can remove plaque by good oral hygiene as demonstrated by the dental hygienist.
- Calculus, sometimes called tartar, is hardened calcified plaque. It sticks firmly to teeth. Generally, it can only be removed with special instruments the dental hygienist.
Helping maintain good overall health.
Did you know that gum disease is a major risk factor for heart disease, stroke and unstable diabetes? By attending the dental hygienist regularly, treating dental disease early and maintaining good oral hygiene at home, your hygienist can help you achieve better health and ultimately a better quality of life.