Oral hygiene is the field in dental medicine driven towards the prevention of the most common diseases of the oral cavity (cavities, gingivitis, periodontitis…) having as objective the maintenance of good oral health.
The oral hygiene appointment should be one of the first to be done since it is where the diagnosis and treatment plan are done by the patient.
In these appointments, scaling (tartar removal responsible for diseases such as gingivitis and periodontitis), removal of external stains (caused by smoking, coffee, etc.) and motivations and instructions for a correct and more efficient oral health maintenance.
When these types of treatments are not carried out or are carried out incorrectly, they lead to a gingival inflammation (gingivitis). A continuous inflammation, when not treated and controlled, may lead to a degradation of the gum and the bone surrounding the tooth. When this process starts to occur, it begins to be denominated as periodontitis, and may end up leading to the loss of the exposed dental pieces.
These appointments should be carried out twice a year (every 6 months) or every 3 months if there is any pathology where a more frequent control is necessary on the dentist’s behalf.
For people that are undergoing or have already done another type of more invasive treatment (such as orthodontics and implants), it is a fundamental area. In the orthodontics case, the occurrence of cavities and gingivitis (inflammation of the gum) is more common, wherefore a good and more detailed periodontal control must be done. In the case of patients with implants, the frequent realization of these appointments allows a bigger control and a more efficient cleansing of these materials, preventing inflammations and infections that can lead to its loss.
Besides these preventive treatments, more esthetically driven treatments that can also be carried out in these appointments, with dental whitening.
Whitening consists in a non-invasive treatment for teeth, which allows to turn them whiter.
It is done by placing a whitening gel on the surface of the tooth, that when penetrated, will bleach the tooth. It does not present any danger for dental health as long as it is done by a professional.
Currently there are two types of external whitening, one conducted in the doctor’s office and the other one at home.
Depending on the patient’s needs, the whitening that best suits each case will be done. However, the combination of the two methods allows a better efficiency and more lasing results.
Nowadays, more and more we have all techniques and tools at hand for a healthy mouth and beautiful smile, in a fast, accessible and safe way!
What about you, have you booked your oral hygiene appointment?
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Opinion article from Dr. Manuel Pinto de Almeida Read Dr. Manuel Pinto de Almeida’s opinion article published in the newspaper “Jornal de Notícias”: "Currently oral health is an important problem of public health. Good oral health is associated to the general...