What to expect at a hygiene appointment
Hopefully a large number of you already come to see us at the Canberra Dental Care for an appointment with a dental hygienist.
For those of you who don’t, we thought we would focus on the benefits of doing so. Including what happens during a typical appointment.
Most of you probably take good care of your teeth. Including doing all that you can to avoid the pain of toothache. But are you aware that your gums are just as important as your teeth. Neglecting them can have a significantly negative impact on your overall oral health.
Why take care of your gums?
Your gum health is important. This means an increasing number of people now see their dental hygienist on a regular basis. This will go a long way in avoiding some of the more common problems associated with gum disease. This can range from a relatively mild soreness, to wobbly and lost teeth.
There are two main stages of gum disease; gingivitis and periodontitis. Gingivitis is a milder form which can usually be treated and managed by ourselves. Periodontitis is an advanced stage gum disease which can result in tooth loss.
There are many possible symptoms of gum disease. Even gingivitis can have some unpleasant symptoms including sore and inflamed gums, gums that bleed when you brush your teeth, and bad breath.
A typical appointment
- Examination – We will take a look at your gums to determine if there are any issues at all, examining each tooth and surrounding gum tissue.
- Discussion – We will discuss any issues that we find and also ways in which you can improve how you look after your gums better at home. This can include advice on brushing and how to floss, but also other things that can affect your gum health such as whether you smoke or drink to excess.
- Treatment – This is typically a three stage process and we will take you through each individual stage.
- Dentist examination – One of our dentist will come in and review your teeth. This is a chance for them to see if there is anything that needs further treatment. The dentist will discuss your overall oral health.
Stage 1 – Initially, a hand ‘scraper’ will be used to manually remove much of the calculus or tartar from your teeth and the gum line. This is a hard layer made up of bacteria and mineral deposits. It also has the effect of providing a rough surface to the tooth which in turn attracts more bacteria.
Stage 2 – sonic cleaning – This is the second part of the cleaning process and will help to remove most of the remaining calculus/tartar. This tool uses ultrasound which causes vibrations that shatter the remaining hardened deposits and removes them effectively. There should be little or no discomfort during this stage of the process.
Stage 3 – professional cleaning – This is similar to home brushing but much more effective. A high speed rotating head is used to remove any final remaining deposits. This will leave your teeth and gums feeling smoother and your mouth much fresher. There is also a hidden bonus for those whose teeth are stained. Whilst it is not as effective as a teeth whitening treatment, the act of high speed polishing can also remove some surface staining on the teeth and brighten them up a little.
Hopefully by knowing What to expect at a hygiene appointment you feel confident to come and see us.
We look forward to meeting you and helping with your oral health!