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17th August 2020

The Dental Problems Your Hygienist Can Spot

Clean, scale, polish: you might assume that’s all your Dental Hygienist can do for your smile, but in reality, there’s so much more – a big part of their role is preventative care, and keeping an eye on the health of your mouth, teeth and gums.

At Roseacre Dental practice, based in Maidstone, Kent, our friendly and fully-trained team take care of your teeth for life. Read on to find out more about how our skilled Hygienists can help.

1) Gum disease

Gum disease – also called gingivitis – is a condition where your gums become red, sore and inflamed. It’s usually caused when bacteria has built up on the surface of the teeth. If untreated, the condition can lead to a more serious type of dental problem called periodontitis, which can result in tooth loss.

Your Hygienist can help identify the problem through examining inside your mouth and possibly taking X-rays. Then, your Hygienist can give you a professional clean to remove plaque and tartar. Sometimes, this includes scaling and root planning, cleaning under the gums, and smoothing and cleaning the root surfaces. 

2) Periodontitis

This condition is classed as a severe gum infection. If gingivitis isn’t treated, the gums can begin to ‘pull away’ from the teeth. This causes spaces to form, which can accumulate bacteria and lead to infection – and as your body fights it off, it damages the delicate gum and bone tissue. Eventually, this can lead to tooth loss.

While your Hygienist can identify the condition, it needs specific treatment to ensure the disease doesn’t get worse. And, depending on how advanced it is, you could require surgery, grafting and regeneration techniques.

3) Infection

Also known as an abscess, this is an infection that starts on the gums, inside the tooth orin a cavity. It can cause pain, sensitivity and general discomfort. Infections can spread into the surrounding tissues (such as the facial bones or throat) and can make you generally ill, such as through sepsis (blood poisoning)

You may need antibiotics or treatment such as a root canal from your Dentist, and may also require referral to a Doctor.

4) Oral cancer

Cancers are tumours, so oral cancer is where a tumour forms somewhere inside the mouth. Common places include the tongue, palate, gums and inner cheeks. They can be painful and persistent and could lead to tooth loss.

Your Hygienist may be able to help identify this, but you will usually be referred to a Periodontist or Otolaryngologist (ENT Doctor).

Because there are so many conditions your mouth, teeth and gums can be affected by, early identification can make all the difference. That’s why it’s so important to have a good oral routine and regular check-ups with your Hygienist.

Talk to our dental practice and book in for an appointment with our Hygienists here in Maidstone, Kent to help keep on top of your teeth today.