Preventive dentistry and Oral hygiene
Preventive dentistry is the modern way forward in helping you keep a healthy mouth. It helps you to keep your teeth, and means you need to have less dental treatment. The two main causes of tooth loss are decay and gum disease. When the dental team and patient work together, this can help to prevent the need for treatment – especially fillings and extractions.
What is involved?
Your dental team will first check your teeth and gums, and talk to you about any treatment you need. A detailed history is taken to assess previous dental treatments. This also gives the dentist an idea as to how regular the patient is with his/her routinely dental appointments.
The main aim is to help you get your mouth really healthy. In a healthy mouth it is unlikely that decay or gum disease will continue to be a problem.
- The dental team will thoroughly remove all plaque and tartar from your teeth. This is often called a ‘scaling with finishing and polishing’.
- The dental team will show you the best ways to brush, and how to clean in between your teeth using interdental brushes or floss, to remove the bacterial ‘plaque’ which forms constantly on your teeth. When you eat or drink something sugary, the bacteria in the plaque turn the sugar into acid, which may cause tooth decay. Plaque can also cause gum inflammation (swelling and soreness) if it is not regularly and thoroughly removed. The hard tartar (or ‘calculus’) which builds up on the teeth also starts off as plaque.
- You will be told which oral care products are the best ones for you to use.
Will dental treatment be recommended to you?
A ‘preventive dentist’ will often recommend treatment to strengthen a tooth to make sure it does not fracture in the future. For example, if the team see that a tooth is cracked or is weak and in danger of breaking, they may advise a new filling or perhaps a crown or ‘onlay’ to protect it. This is always better than waiting until the tooth breaks and then dealing with it as an emergency.
What are pit and fissure sealants?
The biting surfaces of teeth can be protected by applying ‘sealants’. These make the tooth surface smoother and easier to clean, and prevent decay starting in the difficult-to-clean areas. A patient with deep fissures and grooves in his/her teeth is certainly advised for the preventive modality. The team will suggest whether this would be right for you. For more information, visit our advice on pit and fissure sealants.
Can you do anything at home?
Yes, most certainly you can. It is very important to keep up a good routine at home to keep your teeth and gums healthy. We recommend that you:
- Brush your teeth last thing at night and at least one other time during the day, with fluoride toothpaste – brush in the way your dental team have shown you.
- Spit out after brushing and do not rinse, so that the fluoride stays on your teeth longer.
- Clean in between your teeth with ‘interdental’ brushes or floss – brushing alone only cleans up to about 60 percent of the surface of your teeth.
- Use a mouthwash. Many mouthwashes contain antibacterial ingredients to help prevent gum disease and fluoride to help prevent decay. Using the mouthwash in between the times you brush your teeth means that your teeth and gums are protected for longer.
The information on this site is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. All content, including text, graphics, images and information, contained on or available through this web site is for general information purposes only. Zenith Dental Care, Noida (www.zenithdental.in) makes no representation and assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of information contained on or available through this web site, and such information is subject to change without notice.