“Good oral care is part of a healthy lifestyle. It’s easy to keep your teeth and gums in good health. A simple routine of cleaning your teeth daily, establishing good eating habits, and having regular dental visits can help prevent tooth decay and gum (periodontal) disease.” American Dental Assoc.
Preventive care at our office can save “time, money, and teeth”. Our staff strives to develop a partnership with you in which we provide ongoing education about oral health and how it relates to your overall health. We will provide you with the tools and knowledge to maintain your daily oral health.
“Healthy smiles make great impressions!” According to the American Dental Assoc. you can keep your mouth in good condition by doing the following:
- Brush twice a day, and after meals
- Clean between your teeth and below the gumline daily
- Eat a balanced diet and limit snacks
- Visit us regularly for a dental evaluation and professional cleaning.
The following list describes general dental hygiene services most commonly performed to help prevent problems.
- Interview: Let’s get to know each other better!
- Health history review: We review your health and dental history, medications, and any current problems or complaints.
- Visual examination: We evaluate your teeth and oral soft tissues, checking for abnormal conditions and oral cancer.
- Documentation of conditions: Diagnostic x-rays are used to evaluate the hard tissues such as teeth and bone. Our findings are recorded for future reference.
- Recommendations and Treatment Plan: We will recommend dental care that treats and helps to prevent disease, and which meets with your personal goals for dental health.
Basic dental cleaning (prophylaxis): Our professional hygienists provide gentle, thorough removal of bacterial plaque, surface stain, and tartar (calculus) above the gum line followed by polishing and flossing. We recommend innovative and effective measures to assist you with your daily home care.
Non-surgical treatment for gum and bone infections (also called periodontal therapy and supportive periodontal maintenance): We offer a more advanced cleaning known as root planning when bacterial plaque and calculus are present in pockets below the gum line. To provide a gentle, comfortable experience, we administer topical and local anesthesia where
treatment involves areas of inflamed gum tissue.
Preventive Re-Care: Since good oral hygiene is a life long endeavor necessary for long term disease control, we appoint you at periodic intervals for evaluation, monitoring, supportive therapy, and maintenance cleaning.
Tooth decay & Cavity Prevention:
- Fluoride treatments: We apply a gel, foam, or varnish to your teeth to remineralize the tooth surface, making the
surface harder, less porous, and resistant to acid attack.
- Pit and Fissure Sealants: We apply a thin plastic coating over the grooves and crevices of your teeth, sealing them
from bacteria, sugars, and acids.
Nutritional counseling: We discuss the effects of food and drink related to your oral and general health, and make recommendations which contribute to a healthy lifestyle.
Patient Oral Hygiene Instruction: We offer instruction in easy, effective cleaning of all tooth surfaces and surrounding gum tissue. Additionally, we provide options for the effective cleaning of all dental restorations, implants, and fixed and removable appliances.
- We recommend a basic soft bristle manual or sonic power brush.
- For plaque removal from in between the teeth and below gumline, we recommend various specialty brushes and cleaning aids.
- While taking into consideration your individual needs, we will recommend an assortment of specialty toothpastes and prescription gels
- We also recommend assorted mouth rinses for the following: plaque control, plaque disclosure, anti-cavity action, and dry mouth management.
The following paragraphs could be placed into a side panel since the subject relates to all the above.
What causes tooth decay and gum disease?
“Your Teeth are covered with a sticky film of bacteria called plaque. Following a meal or snack, the bacteria convert the sugar and starch in the food into acids that attack tooth enamel. Repeated attacks can cause the enamel to break down, eventually resulting in cavities.”
Plaque that is not removed with thorough daily brushing and cleaning between teeth can eventually harden into calculus, or tartar. Brushing and cleaning between teeth becomes more difficult when tartar collects along or near the gumline. Plaque that is not removed can cause the gum tissue to become irritated and inflamed, making the gums swollen or causing them to bleed. This is called gingivitis, the early stage of periodontal (gum) disease. The good news is that gingivitis is reversible with professional teeth cleaning in the dental office and good oral hygiene at home.
If periodontal disease is left untreated, the gums may pull away from the teeth and form pockets or spaces between the teeth and gums that usually become infected. Without treatment, the infection can progress, bone loss can occur and teeth may become loose, fall out or require extraction.
Twice-daily brushing and cleaning between the teeth daily with floss or other interdental cleaners help remove food particles and plaque from the mouth and are essential in preventing both tooth decay and periodontal disease.” American Dental Association
The following photos and graphics are all courtesy of the American Dental Association.