As a Dental Hygienist preventing my patients from dental disease and helping to improve their general health is so important to me. There is now much more evidence than ever before that the health of our mouth effects our bodies such as our Heart disease, Alzheimers, Cancer, Arthritis & other inflammatoryconditions, Diabetes and Pregnancy.
Dental disease the most common cause of tooth loss in adults suffering from gum disease (periodontal disease) and tooth decay (dental caries) is the most common chronic disease. Having a scale and polish or deep cleaning may sound uncomfortable, but it really improves the gums health. When I clean your teeth, I am removing the tartar (hard deposits) and plaque (soft deposits) from around and under the gum where harmful bacteria accumulate, if you are not cleaning your teeth very accurately. That's the basics of how we prevent and turn around gum disease (periodontal disease) and it's the most rewarding part of a dental hygienist's job.
Are you afraid of the dentist? If you are one of those people that is afraid to go to the dental hygienist becauseyou are embarrassed of the condition of your teeth or fearful of pain, please come. Don't tell anyone but you are our favourites and we love to help you through a journey to improve your mouth.
Bleeding gums It is not normal for your gums to bleed. Some patients say they avoid the areas that bleed when flossing or brushing. But that is exactly the opposite of what you should do to stop the bleeding. It’s the bacteria or plaque that’s causing the bleeding. It is a sign to step up your home care of brushing and cleaning between your teeth. Also use it a sign that it’s time to come in and see your dental hygienist again. Remember, your dental hygiene appointments shouldn’t hurt. We have ways to numb your gums and teeth and ways to make you feels more relaxed.
How often should I see a Dental Hygienist? The frequency of your dental hygiene visits depends on each individual. Your dental hygienist should assess when you should come in next. This should not just be a standard six months for everyone. It should be based on your current periodontal health, medical history, and cavity risk. Ask your dental hygienist what’s best for you. Some come every three months and others once a year.
Here are some little tips for you:
Don’t brush your teeth right after you’ve had breakfast, I’m always surprised more people don’t know this. Your teeth have just been exposed to acid so the enamel is soft, and a small amount could be brushed away. Instead, brush before breakfast and if you want rinse your mouth with water after having breakfast. Brush before bed and try late evening or throughout the day to clean between the teeth with floss or interdental cleaning aids.
Using a fluoride toothpaste is important as Fluoride protects our enamel. After brushing spit don’t rinse to leave as mush fluoride on the teeth and not rinse it away. In our practice we promote a new type of toothpaste called Biomin F. Biomin is different to other well known toothpaste brands as it does not dissolve 90 mins after brushingas all the others. The new Bioglass technology binds the toothpaste to the teeth and in turn binds the fluoride, so our teeth have 10/12 hours protection of slowly released fluoride keeping our enamel remineralised during the day.
Bring your children for their first visit at one year or within 6 months of the first tooth. Most people wait until age three or four, but oral heath should be assessed sooner. This can establish good home care practices and result in early interventions to prevent tooth decay.
Studies show that electric toothbrushes are better, but they are not for everyone. Many people use them wrong. Why not bring your toothbrush to your next hygienist appointment so Ican advise you on your brushing technique and improve the way you are cleaning.
A little info on our hygienist Donna:
Donna has been qualified as a register dental hygienist for over 30 years. Born in Scotland but moved to Ireland in 2000 and has experience in all aspects of dentistry as a hygienist, from working with specialists such Periodontists and Prosthodontists, IV sedation clinics and general dentistry. She is qualified to take X-Rays and give local anaesthetic. Donna has been active in her professional body serving over ten years with the Irish Dental Hygienist Association and took on the presidency for 4 years between 2016 -2020. Donna is now on the Board of Directors of the International Federation of Dental Hygienists as the IFDH Treasurer.