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Gum Disease and Dental Hygiene

Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in the UK, which is why protecting your smile from the condition should be an essential part of your dental hygiene routine. Your gums are the foundation of your smile, so their health is crucial to the longevity of your teeth. Good oral hygiene at home will do most of the hard work in preventing gum disease, but visits to the hygienist will treat the condition and halt it in its tracks, delivering better oral health for your smile.

What is Gum Disease?

Gum disease starts as an inflammation in the gums caused by bacteria. Plaque deposits contain bacteria that trigger the immune system, and a buildup can lead to gums becoming irritated. This can lead gums to become red, swollen and sore, and bleeding. The initial stage of gum disease is gingivitis, which can be treated by the hygienist, who removes the plaque and tartar from the tooth surfaces, eliminating the cause.

If gingivitis is left untreated, it can lead to periodontitis. At this stage, the bacteria causes the gums to recede. Pockets start to form between the gum and tooth, eventually leading to the loosening of the teeth. Unlike the first stage, periodontitis isn’t reversible but can be maintained through periodontal treatments. However, good dental hygiene can prevent this from occurring.

What are the Signs of Gum Disease?

As gum disease starts as an inflammation in the gums caused by a build-up of bacteria, there are certain warning signs to look out for, which could be early warning signs.

This includes:

  • Bleeding gums during or after brushing, flossing, or eating hard foods
  • Gums are noticeably swollen, red, and sore
  • Painful chewing
  • Bad breath and a bad taste in the mouth

With proper oral care, these symptoms can be reversible, and a dental hygienist can help to prevent the symptoms from progressing more seriously. Without consulting a dental hygienist or taking the appropriate oral healthcare steps, it can become more serious and lead to shrinking gums and teeth becoming loose or falling out.

Gum Disease Treatment

Treatment for gum disease will be dependent on the seriousness of the condition, with a thorough assessment first carried out to determine the current oral health, and then discuss the treatment requirements alongside a home plan regarding your oral health routine.

If the treatment is mild or less severe, then gum disease can be treated with a daily brushing and flossing routine alongside an appointment with a dental hygienist, who will monitor the condition. If your dental hygienist believes it to be more serious, then your dental hygienist will provide advice and recommend further treatment, such as a deep cleaning under the gums, antibiotics, teeth removal, or gum surgery.

How to Prevent Gum Disease

Gum disease can easily be prevented, as it is caused by a build-up of plaque on the teeth. With a proper oral hygiene routine, plaque will be removed properly and prevent a build-up.

To prevent gum disease, we recommend:

  • Brushing your teeth with a fluoride toothpaste at least twice a day – spit after brushing and avoid rinsing.
  • Clean in between your teeth every day, using floss or interdental brushes
  • Replace your toothbrush every 1 to 3 months, or immediately after having a virus or cold.
  • See a dentist and a dental hygienist for regular check-ups

What Happens at a Dental Hygiene Appointment?

During a hygiene appointment, the health of your gums and teeth will be assessed. This will involve looking for any signs of swelling, inflammation, or bleeding. The hygienist may also take measurements of where the gum attaches to the tooth and check for signs of oral cancer.

Cleaning and Removing Plaque

One of the main aspects of the hygienist’s role is to carry out a ‘scale and polish’, a thorough clean of the teeth to remove plaque and tartar build-up. Scaling (removing tartar) also makes it easier to keep teeth clean, as there is no longer a rough surface to attract more plaque. This deep clean will be finished off with a polish to leave teeth shiny and smooth.

One of these cleaning treatments is called Airflow, which is a simple procedure that removes plaque, discolouration, and stains from your teeth while helping to prevent more serious conditions like gum disease. Compressed water, air and powder particles are used to remove bacteria and clean your teeth.

If gum disease has progressed beyond the early stages, a hygienist can remove deep tartar from the root surface. This is known as root planing (or debridement), and as it involves deeper cleaning under the gum line, the procedure may require an anaesthetic.

Helpful Advice for Good Dental Hygiene

Hygienists also offer helpful hygiene advice and demonstrate how to keep your teeth clean and plaque-free with toothbrushes, interdental brushes, and floss.

For younger patients, hygienists can apply fluoride varnishes to strengthen enamel or fissure sealants, which provide a protective barrier to stop bacteria from settling in the narrow fissures of the back teeth. These treatments offer a protective measure for young teeth when they first start to emerge.

From deep cleaning to advice on how to maintain healthy teeth and dental care tips, our dentists can help you to prevent gum disease and improve your dental hygiene routine with proper dental care.

Contact us today!

At ConfiDental Clinic, we understand the difference that a natural, healthy smile can make in your everyday life. Our friendly team of dentists are well-versed in Gum Disease, and our specialist Dental Hygienists can help advise and provide quality treatment that leaves you feeling confident and your smile brighter.

To learn more about Gum Disease and Dental Hygiene, get in touch with us today. If you are searching for a local and reliable dentist in the area, then book online at one of our four locations for a quality dental service.

Emergency Dentist Appointment

We are committed to providing the highest standard of personalised dental care with a gentle touch. If you are requiring emergency dental care, then don’t hesitate to contact us today.

Lisa Lambert
Lisa Lambert
The smiling reception is always professional and friendly and I was so pleased when my Dentist, Dr. Deval, took time to inform me of my choices which were best for me personally. A refreshing change. A smashing Dentist, Tuba and her lovely assistant Sanju have taken over from Dr Deval. Tuba, cares about her patients and works towards them keeping a healthy smile, she's a credit to the Dentist profession as is her assistant Sanju. She got rid of an abscess painlessly and on my next appointment she miraculously saved my tooth for which I am so grateful. Valentina and Sarah who work on the reception desk are always welcoming and very helpful. Many thanks to a great Dentist and her team. L Lambert.
Pavel Jagodzinski
Pavel Jagodzinski
I'm so grateful for all the effort and support during my two visits with Dr Tuba Pishgharavol at St Helier Dental Surgery in Morden. Dr Pishgharavol is really a professional, and at the same time showed her passion and commitment in very complicated a root canal treatment. However, all other staff is very polite, friendly and helpful. I would not hesitate to recommend this dental practice to my friends.
nicky lynch
nicky lynch
Highly recommended, all staff are professional and polite and really know what they are talking about. I wouldn’t consider putting mine or my families dental care in any other practices hands . Excellent service all round
Lilly Sineen
Lilly Sineen
Great customer experience from Fatima Ali and her team today. Warm, friendly and put me at ease. We discussed all my options regarding improving my teeth and even had a CT scan on my mouth. Very impressed with the setup and knowledge of the lovely crew. Highly recommended. Thank you for an enjoyable second visit. K. Lilliana Sineen
Jan Showell
Jan Showell
Very good professional service. The practice has a calm and helpful feel about it. I was very pleased with the tooth whitening treatment. The results are better then I expected and the treatment was easy to apply and comfortable to use. I would recommend this surgery for nervous patients like me.
Sioned Davies
Sioned Davies
Had a wonderful service at St Helier with Dr Tuba Pishgharavol and the lovely receptionists Sarah and Valentina. Would recommend highly. Thank you all 🙂

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