On any given day, I would turn up at my practice and look at my appointment book. It’s not uncommon to see a new patient booking in for a ‘clean of their teeth’. After talking to many of these patients, the majority haven’t had professional cleaning done by a dentist for many years, even though they have an impression they probably need one. The tragic thing in my opinion is that they had been told by a dentist in the past that they have ‘gum disease’ but none of them understood what it was, why do they have them or what can be done about it.
One of the most frustrating things for my patients is that they continued to have bleeding gum and tooth decay for many years despite doing the right thing and cleaning their teeth religiously. Sometimes it can feel helpless, like there’s nothing that can be done. But when I looked into patients’ mouths, I can almost always see plaque or film of bacteria around the gum. So why is that?
I’ve been meaning to do this video for a long time as my patients asked me this question a lot. A few friends who saw the original version liked it and found it useful so here’s the official video.
Not too long ago I wrote about the difficulty my patients had in terms of cleaning behind their lower front teeth and I showed them how a bent toothbrush can be made to help with this hard-to-reach area. Although better than nothing, these were not made specifically for the job.
Today I came across a “Brushy ball” on the internet which I thought was very cool. Basically it’s a counter-top brushing coach designed to train young kids to brush their teeth for 2 minutes following the voice prompting of the toy. The unique feature is the fact that the toy’s teeth light up, training the child to clean the whole mouth as he/she follows the flashing light.
Just because you have dentures for many years doesn’t mean they have to look dirty or stained. I’m surprised how many times my patients told me their previous dentists never explained to them how to look after the dentures.
Cleaning around your mouth can be a difficult task with many tight corners and hard-to-reach spots. Wherever you left plaque behind on a regular basis, hard deposit will form and requires professional scaling and cleaning.
When cleaning large gaps between teeth, interdental brush is more user friendly than floss. Many of my patients love this product so much they use these brushes instead of toothpicks after meals. The common brands of these products are Piksters or TePe.
I feel that at some point in your life you’ll be told this line by your dentist when you ask how can you clean your teeth better and it’s one of the biggest misconceptions about cleaning.
This is the third instalment in the oral hygiene series and the topic is on Mouthwash. A fair few patients use mouthwash on a regular basis but do these products really help your teeth as much as what the commercials claimed?