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Beautiful, clean teeth are key to the way we look and feel about ourselves and how others see us. We all try to look after our teeth: we brush, we floss, we use mouthwash regularly; but sometimes that isn’t enough to remove plaque deposits and give a polished smile.
Some of the most common issues that arise from poor dental hygiene are dental cavities, bad breath, gingivitis and periodontitis. By regular teeth-brushing you remove the build ups from your teeth – called plaque – and this helps to keep your teeth and gums healthy, but you can’t remove the hard calculus deposits that form and cause gum disease – that’s why people need to see a hygienist.
Calculus and gum health
Removing calculus and staining is important for how your teeth look but it’s also extremely important for your health.
Build-ups of calculus can lead to inflammation of the gums. The first sign of problems is a condition called gingivitis but left untreated this can and usually does progress to become periodontitis. Periodontitis is serious because this is when the gums start to detach from the teeth and recession begins. As the soft tissues recede, the supporting bone is also lost and, ultimately, teeth become loose or even fall out.
37% of the adult population suffers from moderate chronic periodontitis (where the pockets around the teeth are 4-6mm deep) and a further 8% has severe chronic periodontitis (where the pockets are more than 6mm deep). Poor periodontal health also has links with serious systemic illnesses like cardiovascular disease and diabetes. There is also emerging evidence of links with rheumatoid arthritis, chronic kidney disease, cognitive decline (eg dementia) and osteoporosis.
Gum disease doesn’t usually cause any discomfort and so people are unaware of it until it is quite advanced.
We will monitor the condition of your gums and advise about the best treatments to keep them healthy. With appropriate treatment and supportive therapy, gum disease can be arrested and we can help you to maintain a healthy mouth.
Of course, it’s also nice to have gleaming teeth and fresh breath!
Benefits of seeing a hygienist
- Helps to keep calculus from accumulating so your gums stay healthy
- Helps you to keep your own teeth for a lifetime
- You get more advice on good diet and preventing tooth decay
- Helps you be better at cleaning your teeth at home so you don’t develop serious gum health problems
- When you come to visit us we will give you an initial assessment on the condition of your teeth and gums – over the course of your treatment, each time you visit, we will monitor this
- Keep your teeth free from staining and calculus so you have a gleaming smile
- Helps to prevent halitosis (bad breath) because we’ll be cleaning away the bacteria that cause it