What does a hygienist do?
Your dental hygienist will carry out careful removal of all traces of plaque and tartar from the teeth and gum pockets. She will also demonstrate ways that you can keep good plaque control yourself such as special tooth brushing techniques or use of interdental floss. A few visits may be necessary to begin treatment followed by regular recall visits every three to six months. If you are able to maintain good plaque control then in most cases the gums will begin to heal. The swelling and redness will subside and bleeding will stop. There will also be some reattachment of the gums to the teeth eliminating gum pockets. However, it must be stressed that the outcome of treatment will depend in the most part of plaque control you are able to maintain yourself.
What about the active treatment?
- Good oral hygiene will help prevent gum disease
- Brushing your teeth regularly helps remove plaque from the surface of the tooth
- It is important to brush between the teeth twice a day with a soft bristled brush. Be sure to choose a brush size and shape to fit your mouth. Ask your team for advice.
- Plaque produces substances that attack and inflame gums making them tender and bleed easily.
- If the gums are not treated the bone around the teeth can be destroyed.
- Gum disease is one of the main causes of tooth loss in adults.
What else does a hygienist do?
Modern hygienists may also carry out fluoride treatments, fissure sealing and give local anaesthetics to make polishing more comfortable.