Clean teeth and healthy gums are very important for overall health and wellbeing. You need to visit your dentist and hygienist Richmond on a regular basis to ensure that your teeth are clean and that your gums are free of disease. It is recommended that you visit your dentist and hygienist at least once every six months. If you suffer from dental health complications such as cavities, tooth decay or gum disease, then it is important that you visit the dentist and hygienist more often. If you have crooked and wonky teeth then you are more likely to develop dental health complications and you should also visit the dentist more regularly. Smokers need to visit the dentist every three or four months to make sure that their teeth and gums are healthy. Also patients who suffer from certain medical conditions such as diabetes need to visit the dentist more regularly to prevent unpleasant symptoms and premature tooth loss.
Your dentist examines your teeth for any signs of abnormalities making sure that your teeth are free of cavities or tooth decay and that your gums are free of signs of disease. The dentist carries out general dental treatment to restore the health of your teeth, whilst recommending you to the hygienist to look after your gums. Your hygienist is concerned with good dental hygiene and the health of your gums. The gums work together with your jaw bone to hold the teeth in place, therefore it is very important that your gums are healthy and free of disease. Healthy gums should be pale pink in colour, they should be firm to touch and they should fit snugly around your teeth. If your gums are red or swollen, if they are sore or tender and they bleed when you brush or floss then this indicates that you are suffering from gum disease. You need to pay attention to your dental hygiene and it is also essential that you book an appointment with your dentist to prevent any further complications. Gum disease can result in tooth loss, therefore you need to visit your dentist and hygienist sooner rather than later to prevent irreversible damage to your teeth.
How does the hygienist carry out a scale and polish?
Plaque and tartar build up on the surface of your teeth containing millions of bacteria which release acids and toxins that result in tooth decay and gum disease. When you visit your hygienist they will examine your gums carefully and look for any signs of gum disease. If plaque and tartar have built up on your teeth then your hygienist will carry out a scale and polish. Scaling refers to scraping away deposits of plaque and tartar from the surface of your teeth. The hygienist will use an ultrasonic device to remove most of the tartar from your teeth. Stubborn remains are then scraped away using specialised handheld instruments. The polishing stage includes buffing your teeth so that the surface is smooth, making it difficult for plaque and tartar to adhere to the surface of your teeth. This also removes the superficial stains from the surface of your teeth, revealing the white enamel underneath. Finally your hygienist may apply a protective coat of fluoride to complete the process. a scale and polish should be pain-free, however you can ask for a local anaesthetic if you are uncomfortable.
How does the hygienist carry out root planing?
Root planing is carried out in the same way as a scale and polish, however it is done to clean the roots of your teeth. To do so your dentist has to push away the gum to reveal the roots of your teeth. This can be uncomfortable, therefore the procedure is carried out under local anaesthetic. Similar to scaling, plaque and tartar is scraped away from the roots and the roots are buffed to smooth the surface. Antibiotics may be injected into the gums when necessary and the gums will recover and move back into place to fit snugly around the teeth. Root planing is an effective and non-surgical treatment for gum disease and should help improve the health of your gums encouraging better dental health in the future.
After undergoing a scale and polish or root planing it is important that you continue to maintain excellent dental hygiene at home to prevent the return of gum disease. You may be asked to visit the dentist more regularly and by doing so the dentist and hygienist will also help you prevent gum disease from recurring. Speak to your dentist today and find out more about maintaining better dental hygiene and enjoying healthy teeth and gums.