Hygiene advice from Jeanette
I treat patients with different needs and requirements.
Don’t panic if you are now overdue for your regular hygiene appointment due to the practice being closed for routine care. Spending time (twice a day for at least 2 mins) being precise brushing all tooth surfaces (including the edge where the gum meets the tooth) and cleaning several times a day in between them with interdental brushes (ie TePes or icon brushes) and or dental tape/floss should keep most problems at bay for most patients.
Don’t forget to just spit out the toothpaste rather than rinsing afterwards so that the fluoride and antibacterial agents can work for longer.
If you’ve been advised to use an interspace brush (single tufted brush) make sure you use it every time you brush.
Don’t forget that you can buy interdental, interspace brushes and electric toothbrush heads online.
If your regular appointment is rescheduled you may find that teeth become more stained from tea, coffee, red wine, smoking, spicy foods. Corsodyl mouthwash/gel can also stain teeth. Do not be tempted to use an extra abrasive toothpaste, powder, off the shelf or online whitening system or metal implement to remove the stain. It could scratch the surface of the tooth and in fact make it worse or cause permanent damage. Just hang on in there until we can see you again. Maybe consider booking an appointment for the jet polisher which will remove the stain quickly and safely once we return to normal.
Patients with gum disease issues, those who have had problems in the past or are prone to ‘flare ups’ – your regular appointments will have been monitoring your disease status and will have been removing bacterial plaque from those difficult areas often below the gum line. Keeping to your usual brushing/interdental regime is still as important as ever. You probably know where your ‘problem’ areas are. Target these daily. If an area bleeds don’t worry, it just means it needs some extra attention from you. Rinsing with warm water with a teaspoon of salt dissolved in it can help these areas. Corsodyl mouth wash can help these areas short term but use sparingly as it can cause staining. If you require any further advice regarding swelling or pain give us a ring.
Sensitivity – for general sensitivity – usually at the gum line on the outside surface (cheek side) of a tooth, sensitive toothpaste can be used when brushing but can also be applied with the finger to the affected area. It’s important to rub for 1 minute to allow the active ingredient to enter the ‘pores’ in the dentine of the tooth. Sensitivity in these areas can often be caused by over brushing or using a horizontal scrubbing action. Keep the area clean but avoid over doing it. Consuming more acidic foods and drinks can also contribute to sensitivity ie alcohol, fizzy drinks, juices, fruit. Limit intake and make sure you don’t brush immediately after consuming. Leave it up to an hour.
I wish that all my patients stay safe and well. Looking forward to the time when I can get back to providing a full hygienist service very soon. Take care.