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Preventive

Preventive Dentistry is a term used to describe the diagnosis of a patient’s overall oral health, and identifying the ways we can help to enhance and maintain health.  This involves both the teeth and gums, and very occasionally other structures in the mouth that present with problems.

Diagnosis

A diagnosis can be made of a specific problem, or the overall health of your mouth.  In order to make a diagnosis, we require various information.  This can be gained from any of the following:

  • Examination
    Undertaken for each patient.
  • x-rays
    Usually required in some form to establish a clear picture of your current dental health, and any areas we cannot see (such as in between the teeth or beneath the gums).
  • Models
    Or ‘moulds’ can be used to study the bite, alignment and appearance of the teeth. Often required in orthodontic, bridge and implant cases.
  • Photographs

Gums

  • Importance of good hygiene
    Our gums are like the foundation of a building.  They help to hold our teeth in place and anchor them in the jaw bones. Without healthy gums, teeth won’t last a lifetime.
  • Gingivitis and periodontitis
    Are both diseases of the ‘gums’. Gingivitis affects the part of the gum that you can see in your mouth. It causes them to become inflamed, swollen, bleed easily and sometimes odorous. Periodontitis is a slightly more serious condition, where other structures that also support the tooth are affected.  These include the gums, the ligament around the tooth and the bone. It leads to loose teeth, can be quite odorous, and can cause periods of acute pain.  In most cases the cause of gingivitis and periodontitis is ‘calculus’. This is plaque that has gone hard over time. Proper cleaning both at home and at the dentist to remove calculus is vital in maintaining good gum health.
  • Referrals
    In some cases we may feel that the gum disease is quite severe, or that specialist techniques could be used to improve or restore gum health.  This is when we would refer patients to see a periodontist for specialist treatment.

Teeth

  • Cleaning
  • Re-calcifying
  • Diet
  • Fluoride
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