Description of the service
What is oral hygiene?
Preventive dental care, or oral hygiene, is a field of dentistry consisting of all the procedures that prevent the development of diseases in the oral cavity, especially periodontal diseases (periodontitis) and caries.
Preventive dental care consists of two fields:
- professional cleaning procedures that reduce the number of bacteria in the oral cavity;
- education: making patients aware of their health needs, and instilling the right habits that help them follow the right oral hygiene principles in a simple and effective way.
- Preventive dental care helps notice the early signs of caries. Regular visits to a dental hygienist also help avoid gingivitis and ensure higher aesthetic comfort.
When to visit the specialist?
Brown streaks and stains on your teeth: a common problem for heavy drinkers of coffee, tea or red wine. Discolourations can be accompanied by plaque and tartar, which are results of poor oral hygiene. They can be removed in a dental hygiene practice thanks to a professional teeth cleaning procedure.
Yellowish or brown tartar between your teeth or along your gum line: this is a sign that you need an urgent visit to the oral hygiene practice. Small tartar deposits are invisible to the eye, so if you are able to see them, there must be plenty of them. Tartar deposits are often accompanied by bleeding gums when brushing or flossing.
- Gums bleeding when brushing: bleeding without mechanical trauma clearly indicates gingivitis. The inflammation is caused by excessive number of bacteria in the oral cavity, accumulated due to supragingival and subgingival dental deposits. In order to treat it, the tartar and plaque need to be removed, and you need to start the proper gum care at home.
- Problems when flossing: you are unable to get the floss inside the interdental space or the floss is frayed after use, this may indicate that there are large tartar deposits between the teeth or that the filling in this area has become tarnished or damaged. In both cases, scaling will help you. The filling can also be polished with a special polishing device.
- Gums are dark red or look swollen: these are other signs of gingivitis. Be sure to visit the oral hygiene practice if you notice this sign, in order to have the dental deposits removed, as they accumulate massive amounts of bacteria, and learn how you can take better care of your teeth.
- Discomfort or pain in the oral cavity that is difficult to locate: in the case of gingivitis, it is difficult to describe and accurately locate the pain. It spreads as the inflammation progresses. This feeling disappears after the tartar and deposits are removed, and the inflammation is cured.
- Bad breath: it is caused by the bacteria living in your oral cavity, especially if they are present in excessive quantities, accumulated in dental deposits and food debris. The fight against them starts with the proper dental and tongue hygiene. It is also a good idea to have your teeth scaled and sandblasted by a hygienist.
- Rare dental visits: dental check-ups that are infrequent increase the likelihood of developing gingivitis and dental caries. The absence of discomfort does not mean that everything is fine. Bacteria are constantly multiplying in the oral cavity, even under dental deposits, whereas early stages of caries might not give painful symptoms.
Oral hygiene at enel-med
At enel-med dental practices, we offer a full range of preventive dental care and hygienic procedures.
These are usually performed without anaesthesia because they are painless. They are only associated with certain discomfort depending on individual sensitivity of each patient.
Learn more about our offer:
- Removal of tartar and plaque
These are basic preventive dental care procedures that reduce the number of bacteria in the oral cavity, helping avoid their further growth, and also improve the appearance of the teeth.
Tartar is removed using an ultrasonic scaler and manual tools. This method makes it possible to crush the hard structure of the tartar without damaging the underlying tooth surface. The procedure may be accompanied by some discomfort and hypersensitivity due to vibrations emitted by used devices.
Deposits, or the unsightly brown streaks and stains on teeth, are removed with sandblasting. This is a procedure that involves abrading the deposit from the surface of the teeth by a mixture of sand and water under pressure. It might cause some discomfort for the patient, but it is worth withstanding, as a similar result cannot be achieved by other methods.
- Teeth polishing
Teeth polishing usually ends other cleaning procedures. It allows to smooth the surfaces that have become rough after sandblasting or tartar removal (both fillings and natural parts of teeth).
Teeth are polished with special polishers, brushes, interdental strips and professional polishing pastes. The treatment leaves the oral cavity with a pleasant feeling of smoothness and freshness, which should also accompany us after each properly performed brushing and flossing at home.
In some cases, polishing can replace sandblasting, especially when deposits on teeth are small and located in places accessible for polishing accessories.
Did you know: The surface of crowns, bridges and veneers must not be polished with abrasive accessories. An antibacterial gel is used to polish them. Prosthetic works are made of materials on which no deposits should appear. Therefore, if they do appear, this means large hygienic negligence.
Fluoridation involves supplementation of fluorine. This element strengthens the structure of tooth enamel, protecting it from harmful acids produced by bacteria and found in food. Fluoride therapy also reduces bacterial growth, and is effective against tooth sensitivity.
Fluoride has no side effects, and can be used in patients of all ages. Its dose, concentration and frequency of application depend on the purpose for which fluoridation is used.
As a topical treatment, fluoridation works with varying effectiveness on different tooth surfaces. The presence of tartar and plaque on teeth reduces the surface on which the fluoridating preparation is active, so fluoridation is best performed immediately after the cleaning procedure in the oral hygiene practice.
- Briefing on oral hygiene
As absurd as it sounds, we all need tips on brushing our teeth and cleaning our interdental spaces. The condition of our teeth is an individual matter, as are our needs and sense of comfort. Hygiene standards are subject to various advancements, and there are many accessories on the market that make oral hygiene easier. A dental hygienist will give you advice on which ones to choose, and how to select them properly.
How to prepare for an appointment with a hygienist?
- Remember the date of your last dental cleaning procedure at the oral hygiene practice.
- Take a look at your gums: see if they bleed when you brush and floss the teeth.
- Try to locate the hypersensitive areas in your oral cavity to tell your hygienist about possible soreness.
- Remember what kind of toothbrush, toothpaste or mouthwash you use. Also, write down the oral hygiene accessories you use and how often you do it.
- Write down any questions you have, e.g. about hygienic accessories, new cleaning products or whitening agents that you want to use, but do not know if they are suitable for you – the hygienist will dispel all your doubts.
What are the benefits of regular oral hygiene?
- Health under control: regular teeth cleaning is like a dental check-up – during the procedure, the hygienist will check the surfaces of your teeth for caries as well. Remember that early detection of dental caries means less invasive treatment. A beautiful, healthy and natural smile.
- Fresh breath: regular removal of dental deposits reduces the number of bacteria, which are the main cause of bad breath.
Personalised health and hygiene tips you receive at the dental hygiene practice.
- Professional assistance in oral hygiene: the hygienist will help you choose the accessories and preparations that will ensure you are taking good care of your teeth and do not harm them.
Consequences of lack of regular oral hygiene:
- rapid development of caries, progressing with uncontrolled proliferation of bacteria. Caries is several times more common in teeth with tartar and plaque. It is likely to develop under dental deposits, invisible until they are removed. The later it is discovered, the more invasive treatment is necessary;
- inaesthetic discolourations on teeth, removable only with professional treatments in the oral hygiene practice. Discolourations that are not removed for a long time become even more darker;
- nflammation of the gums, manifested by their dark red colour, bleeding and swelling. If left untreated, it causes pain and the formation of pathological pockets, accumulating subgingival calculus deposits. Bacteria developing in the pockets spread inflammation and destroy the structures surrounding the tooth: the periodontium and the bones;
- Inflammation of the periodontium, which is caused by untreated inflammation of the gums. This condition requires long-term specialist periodontal treatment. It can cause the loss of even healthy teeth;
- Health hazard: bacteria from the oral cavity penetrate to your blood and reach internal organs. This is dangerous especially for people suffering from other conditions, e.g. cardiovascular and rheumatological diseases;
Difficult treatment of teeth, caused by abnormal gum condition. Gum inflammation tends to cause profuse bleeding, which makes caries treatment more difficult: placement of a filling requires the area to be dry.
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