How our Clapham dental hygienist helps to prevent gum disease.
As we have mentioned in previous Confidental Clinic blogs, gum disease is responsible for more tooth loss than decay, yet, despite this, most people take less care of their gums than their teeth. Whilst regular brushing will help to look after the teeth, it is less effective at removing harmful bacteria from between the teeth and the gum line.
Additional techniques such as flossing, or inter-dental cleaning with a special brush, greatly improve the chances of removing this ‘bad’ bacteria, and yet, only around 20% of us floss and many that do, often do so incorrectly.
Even if someone takes really good care of their teeth and gums, there are still areas where bacteria can collect which make it almost impossible to remove with home cleaning. Visiting our Clapham dental hygienist, Lauren Bennet, should be seen as more than an ‘extra’ and, instead, an essential part of keeping your gums healthy.
There are a number of ways in which these visits are important for good oral health.
- Scale and polish – This is the procedure carried out by the hygienist where hardened bacteria, known as tartar or calculus, is removed professionally from the teeth and the gum line. This is a non invasive procedure and should cause no significant discomfort. The teeth are also polished using a high speed brush to remove any remaining surface staining. This also often results in improving the appearance of the teeth.
- Brush and floss correctly – Many people that brush and floss do so incorrectly. Excessive brushing can cause worn enamel and using a ‘sawing’ motion to floss the teeth is not an effective way to remove plaque and food residues. Our hygienist is always happy to show you the best way to perform these essential tasks.
- Lifestyle choices – Everybody makes different lifestyle choices and we are not here to judge yours. In our educational role though, we do need to point out areas that can cause oral health problems. Two of the most common of these are drinking and smoking which can cause not only gum disease, but in some cases may lead to oral cancers. Sugar intake may also be discussed, not only because it increases the likelihood of tooth decay, but also because some patients. e.g. diabetics, are more likely to suffer from oral health issues than those who do not have diabetes.
- Family advice – Our hygienist is great with children and many adult patients have brought their children to see Lauren too. A lot of parents find that, after discussing their teeth with her, they take more responsibility for cleaning their teeth and look after them better.
If you are someone who has always thought a dental hygienist as being an unnecessary ‘extra’, we strongly recommend that you arrange an appointment with Lauren at our Clapham dental practice. We are sure that you will be pleasantly surprised at how much healthier and cleaner your teeth are, following your appointment, and you will leave our practice feeling more confident about how to look after your teeth correctly.
Appointments can be made by calling the Confidental Clinic on 020 7801 9060.