Dental Therapist Q&A

We’ve asked our resident Dental Therapist, Ruth Lovering, to answer some of the most frequently asked questions on dental health.  We start with some of the more basic questions she is faced with during her busy day. 

We will be adding more questions and answers to the list.  However, if you would like to ask a question, please feel free to send them to us.

Q. When should I brush my teeth?

A. Everyone should brush their teeth twice a day using a fluoride toothpaste. Once in the morning and last thing at night making sure that any drink consumed during the night is just water. Make sure you spit out after brushing but it is now recommended that you do not rinse thus enabling the fluoride in the toothpaste to help your teeth.

Click here for more information on the Elgydium range of toothpastes 

 

Q. What is the best way to clean my teeth?

A. No particular technique has been shown to be better than another, however each person should check with their dentist/therapist or hygienist as their method may need to be modified to ensure all the teeth surfaces are cleaned every time.

Click here for further advice on toothbrushing

 

Q. My gums bleed when I brush my teeth.  Is this normal?

A. No, it is not normal in an otherwise healthy mouth.  Bleeding gums are one of the first signs of gingivitis and you should visit your dentist/therapist or hygienist for a check-up. They will check your teeth and gums and remove any plaque or tartar that has built up.  They will also advise on the best way to clean your teeth, so that you can remove plaque build-up on a daily basis.  They may also recommend an antiseptic mouthwash containing chlorhexidine, such as Eludril.  It is important for you to seek help as if left untreated, gingivitis may lead to periodontal disease and this is more difficult to reverse.

Click herre for more advice on gum disease

 

 

 

 

 

Dental Therapist Q&A

Ruth

We’ve asked our resident Dental Therapist, Ruth Lovering, to answer some of the most frequently asked questions on dental health.  We start with some of the more basic questions she is faced with during her busy day.  

We will be adding more questions and answers to the list.   If you would like to ask a question, please feel free to send them to us. 

When should I brush my teeth?

Everyone should brush their teeth twice a day using a fluoride toothpaste. Once in the morning and last thing at night making sure that any drink consumed during the night is just water. Make sure you spit out after brushing but it is now recommended that you do not rinse thus enabling the fluoride in the toothpaste to help your teeth.

Click here for more information on the Elgydium range of toothpastes
 

What is the best way to clean my teeth?

No particular technique has been shown to be better than another, however each person should check with their dentist/therapist or hygienist as their method may need to be modified to ensure all the teeth surfaces are cleaned every time.

Click here for further advice on toothbrushing
 

My gums bleed when I brush my teeth.  Is this normal?

No, it is not normal in an otherwise healthy mouth.  Bleeding gums are one of the first signs of gingivitis and you should visit your dentist/therapist or hygienist for a check-up. They will check your teeth and gums and remove any plaque or tartar that has built up.  They will also advise on the best way to clean your teeth, so that you can remove plaque build-up on a daily basis.  They may also recommend an antiseptic mouthwash containing chlorhexidine, such as Eludril.  It is important for you to seek help as if left untreated, gingivitis may lead to periodontal disease and this is more difficult to reverse.

Click here for more advice on gum disease

 

My dentist has warned me that diet, fizzy and fruit-based drinks are bad for my teeth.   Why is  this? 

These drinks contain a high level of acid which can soften the enamel and make it prone  to erosion.  You should drink fizzy and fruit-based drinks through a straw and as part of  a meal.  You should always wait at least half an hour after your meal before brushing  your teeth.

 

What foods are good for my teeth?

Savoury foods or those with little or no sugar are good for your teeth.  Also, a small  amount of cheese eaten after a meal can help neutralise the acids in your mouth.  The  act of chewing stimulates saliva production which counteracts the bacteria that builds  up on your teeth.

 

My Mum suffers from gum disease.  Is it hereditary?

No, not necessarily.  It can be hereditary but many people suffer without a genetic cause.  The major cause of gum disease is poor oral hygiene.  Gum disease is the most common  form of  tooth loss in adults.
 

What are the symptoms of gum disease that I should look out for?

Red, swollen gums that bleed easily when brushed can be the earliest sign of gum disease (gingivitis).  It is important to seek treatment at this stage because if left untreated, it can lead to periodontitis.  You should also seek advice from your dentist or hygienist if you experience a persistent unpleasant taste, bad breath or loose teeth, as these can also indicate the presence of gum disease.

 

Is there a connection between gum disease and smoking?

Yes, smokers are more likely to produce bacterial plaque which can lead to gum disease.  With more dental plaque and bad oral hygiene in smokers, gum disease progresses more rapidly than in non-smokers.

 

I am always too tired to do a thorough brush at bedtime.  Is this a problem?

Everyone should brush their teeth twice a day and the night time brush is the most important one.

Instead of waiting until you go to bed, choose a time during the evening when you know you are finished eating and drinking and take yourself off to the bathroom and give your teeth a thorough clean.

That way you know that all your teeth have been properly cleaned and not the quick brush they get when you are too tired and want to go to bed!
 

I know I should floss but I cannot get into a routine; any suggestions?

Flossing or use of interdental brushes should be done on a regular basis. Always ask for advice or instructions from your dentist, therapist or hygienist.

Set yourself a small goal, achieve it then move on. The front 6 teeth are the easiest to see and clean interdentally.  Start with them for a week then move to the top or bottom on the left.

Do this for another week then complete the left side for the 3rd week. Then start on the right using the same principles and by week 5 you should be cleaning your whole mouth with ease!

Obviously if you are left handed swap and do the right side first as this will be easier.

I often tell patients to start with every other day and choose days when you know you are not going to have very late nights as it will never be done. Good luck!

 

I see lots of press about electric toothbrushes but I like using my manual one.  Is that a problem?

If your Dentist, Therapist or Hygienist has told you that you are doing a good job with your toothbrushing then there is no need to change.  However, if you are brushing too hard and causing recession or you are not managing to clean all your teeth properly and you have been recommended to try an electric brush, it is worth making the change.
 

Why do I need to see a hygienist/therapist and a dentist?

Your dentist and hygienist/therapist have different roles within the dental team. 

Dentists treat and prevent dental and oral health problems, such as tooth decay, gum disease and injuries. They can also offer advice and tips on how to care for your mouth and teeth.

A dental hygienist's role is to prevent dental problems and to promote oral health. A dental hygienist will carry out procedures such as scaling and polishing teeth, applying topical fluoride treatments and fissure sealants (white plastic coatings painted onto the biting surface of back teeth), and sometimes teeth whitening.

Dental therapists are the least common of dental healthcare professionals to be found in general practice. The types of treatment they carry out are similar to those of a hygienist and like the hygienist, the dental therapist has to work to a prescription from the dentist.

Dental therapists play an important role in promoting dental health. They also specialise in working with patients with special needs, such as those who are phobic (frightened) of dentists, who have physical or learning disabilities, who have complex medical problems or find it difficult to access dental treatment in a general dental practice.

Everyone will be told individually how often they should see their dentist or hygienist/therapist depending on their specific treatment needs.

How often should I have x-rays?

X-rays are important in helping to check on the condition of your mouth and to uncover any hidden problems.

In terms of how often they should be taken, each patient is reviewed individually.  X-rays may be needed as often as every 6 months or as infrequently as every 18 months depending on whether the dentist is monitoring or worried about a specific problem in the individual’s mouth.

Does exercise help keep gums healthy?

A healthy body and a healthy mouth should go hand in hand.  If you look after both and carry out good oral hygiene regularly, your mouth will feel good and so will you!

And there’s now clinical evidence to support this view.  A recent study suggests that people who have high levels of fitness and maintain a healthy weight are less likely to show symptoms of gum disease.

 
 
 
Copyright © Pierre Fabre

Eludril Mouthwash & Elgydium Toothpaste are manufactured by Pierre Fabre Oral Care & distributed by Pierre Fabre Limited.

  Eludril Mouthwash contains chlorhexidine.  Always read the label. 
 
Adverse events should also be reported to Pierre Fabre Ltd. Tel: 0208 731 3322
  Pierre Fabre Oral Care
Home
Eludril
Elgydium
Oral Health
Mouth Problems
Healthy Mouth Tips
Toothbrushing
How to Floss
General Healthy Mouth Tips
Dental Therapist Q&A's
Finding an NHS Dentist
Dental Tips - Hidden Sugar
Healthcare Professionals
Contact Us
Useful Links
Where to Buy
www.intergage.co.uk | Digital Marketing Agency