Each new patient undergoes a thorough Oral Health Assessment which consists of a comprehensive medical and social assessment and a detailed oral and radiographic examination. This allows us to measure your current level of oral health, identify those areas where you require treatment and establish all future monitoring needs.
We can then design your personal care plan enabling you to understand your role in achieving a high level of oral health. We aim to minimise the possible need for future invasive dental treatment. We will strive to keep you free of decay and gum disease, something which we are confident is achievable, and your dental health will be reviewed at regular six monthly intervals.
Plaque control and preventative care appointments with our dental hygienist
Gum Disease leading to Tooth Loss
The key to a healthy mouth is not just scaling and polishing. The following section begins to explain the importance we place on the prevention of dental disease.
What is the dental hygienists role in the practice?
The main aim is to provide professional cleaning of the teeth. This is usually called a scale and polish. However, perhaps their most important role is the education of the patient in the best way to keep teeth free of plaque. The hygienist will work with your dentist to provide a tailor-made solution for your treatment needs.
Why is oral hygiene treatment important?
Regular professional cleaning combined with your home care will maintain a healthy mouth. A clean and healthy mouth will improve your appearance, help you to keep your teeth and give you fresh breath.
What is periodontal (gum) disease?
Periodontal literally means “around the tooth”. It is a serious infection that affects the tissues surrounding the teeth. These tissues include the gums and bone supporting the teeth. Unchecked, periodontal disease can result in tooth loss. It is usually a slow, painless, progressive disease. Most adults with it are unaware they have it. If diagnosed and treated early, the teeth can be saved. For this to be achieved, the hygienist needs you to follow closely the advice and oral hygiene regime demonstrated in the surgery. Failing to comply with the advice given may eventually result in avoidable tooth loss. Home care is the most important element of successful gum treatment.
What causes periodontal disease?
The main cause is accumulation of plaque bacteria. Plaque is often a colourless mass of bacteria that sticks to teeth, crowns and bridges, and other tissues in the mouth. Plaque is constantly forming and irritates the gums causing them to become red and swollen. If not removed daily, plaque becomes the hard material known as tartar or calculus, which cannot be removed by brushing and flossing alone. A dentist or hygienist must remove it manually to stop the disease process.
What is a dental hygienist?
Dental hygienists are an integral part of any successful dental surgery team and are trained for two years to work alongside the dentist in providing and assisting with oral care to the patient. They play an important role in dental healthcare and are mainly concerned with gum health and the application of preventative materials to the teeth and gums. Here at the Old Surgery Dental Practive we have dedicated team of highly efficient dental hygienists, al of whom you can see in our meet the team section of our website.
What can I do to help the dental hygienist?
You can do a great deal to help yourself by following the advice, attending necessary appointments and using the products recommended. These can be bought from reception and are usually a lot cheaper than at other retailers. Smoking increases the effects of gum disease and the rate of tooth loss. A referral for smoking cessation therapy can be arranged at your hygiene appointment.
Will I always need to see the dental hygienist?
Oral Hygiene Education
Initial cleaning to begin removal of hard deposits of tartar above and below gum level. Your hygienist will begin to show you the skills and techniques used to achieve a healthy mouth.
Further removal of all deposits under gum level and around tooth margins. Periodontal aids may be prescribed and used, e.g. floss, tapes or interspace brushes. Your hygienist can also assess plaque control and improve your daily oral hygiene routine if necessary.
Maintaining Oral Health
At this stage you should now have achieved good oral health, and if this is maintained, should lead to healthy teeth and gums for life. Your hygienist will still remove any hard and soft plaque deposits and help refine the skills you have acquired to keep your mouth healthy and disease free.
Is the cleaning & preventative care treatment expensive?
Regular plaque control and preventative care appointments are included in our monthly payment plans. However, sometimes it may be necessary to have extra visits to bring you up to a good standard of oral health. A quotation will always be given prior to treatment.