Preventive Dentistry is less costly, more comfortable, and far more enjoyable for all of us. Our goal is to have our patients eliminate cavities and gum disease through good oral hygiene, proper diet and nutrition, thus keeping dental problems to a minimum. In general, we recommend that dental cleanings be performed at least every 6 months to prevent excessive plaque and calculus build-up on your teeth. Some people tend to accumulate more build-up than others, and some people’s calculus is much more tenacious than others. After seeing you routinely, we can create a customized recall to best fit your needs that may involve coming for cleanings as often as every 3-4 months.
Your toothbrush bristles are designed to clean about 2-3 millimeters below your gums, but the instruments using in a preventive dentistry professional cleaning can go deeper than this and clean hard-to-reach areas. This will prevent build-up from accumulating below the gumline, which can lead to bone loss, infection, and tooth mobility. The hygienist will usually take X-rays at your cleaning appointment once per year as well. These X-rays help the dentist look for decay and other tooth-related problems as well as assess the health of the bone supporting your teeth.
Routine cleanings allow us to closely monitor your oral health and intervene as quickly as possible when problems are detected. preventive dentistry can sometimes be a simple as prescription toothpaste to help strengthen your enamel if we see early breakdown of the enamel. We may also suggest placing sealants over deep grooves in teeth if we see the deep grooves are trapping plaque that you’re having difficulty removing. Sealants can help prevent decay. The hygienist can also serve as a helpful resource for education about various dental products. Very young, very old, and medically compromised patients often do not have the dexterity to brush and floss properly. There are several flossing aids that the hygienist can discuss with you, and she can give you one-on-one instructions on how to use them to help keep your teeth as clean as possible. If you wait until your teeth hurt to come see the dentist, treatment often involves root canals and extractions, which are major services.