woman dentist checking up a patient

Your oral hygiene champion, the hygienist

The role of the dental hygienist Richmond is vital to helping you retain your teeth. Six monthly visits to the dental surgery should include regular hygienist treatment. Hygienists are highly qualified and registered members of the dental team. Their job is more than just removing plaque and calculus from your teeth. They will examine your oral cavity and can identify signs of medical conditions such as mouth cancer and coeliac or liver disease from the stains on your teeth among other indicators.

Oral hygiene guidance

Hygienists can educate you on the right toothbrush to use that will not damage your teeth or irritate your gums. The technique that you use to brush and floss your teeth needs to be suited to your particular mouth. How and when to use interdental brushes should also be part of your dental hygiene routine and they will advise you. Supporting and guiding you in how to stop smoking is another area where hygienists can provide invaluable help.


Help with your smile

Teeth whitening is becoming increasingly popular and any dental treatment should be handled by a qualified dental clinician. Hygienists will always precede a dental whitening procedure with an oral examination. They need to identify and understand what the cause is of any tooth discolouration. There are certain medical conditions which have been known to result in colour changes to your teeth. Eating disorders, coeliac and liver disease as well as calcium deficiency, perhaps as a result of an eating disorder, are all possible causes. Any serious disease that the hygienist identifies will be followed by advice to consult your medical practitioner. This information will be recorded in your records. The dentist will then establish if it is appropriate to proceed with the teeth whitening procedure. If it is, then using the correct strength solution as prescribed by the dentist that suits your particular teeth and gums, your teeth will be whitened.

Dietary advice

What you eat affects your teeth and hygienists will discuss your diet and advise you how your teeth are being affected by what you eat and drink. Sugary foods and drinks play a huge part in accelerating tooth decay. Sugary fizzy drinks, alcohol and coffee are common culprits of tooth decay, but regular brushing and flossing can slow the process. Acid caused by certain bacteria fermentation of carbohydrates can cause dental decay. Hygienists are well trained in this area and will guide you. Dental and gum disease caused by bacteria can result in bad breath and tooth loss. That is why regular six monthly dental visits are so important in maintaining a healthy mouth.

Feeling clean and fresh

The smooth clean feeling when you run your tongue over your teeth after the hygienist has cleaned and polished your teeth is very satisfying. Polishing your teeth also has the effect of reducing the amount of bacteria in your mouth. We all have bacteria in our mouths, the problem is that some of them can cause tooth decay. Teeth polishing is a painless procedure and is achieved by using a rubber cup and polishing paste.

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