What do we mean by Preventative Dentistry?
Preventative dentistry or the good old fashioned ‘dental check-up’ is essential to maintaining good oral health, and avoiding pain and disruptions to your daily life. Tooth decay and gingivitis often lead to gum disease, toothache and the need for fillings, tooth extractions, crowns and even root canal treatments.
Preventive dental treatments include routine oral exams, X-rays, cleanings, sealants, and fluoride treatments. Educational instruction such as proper brushing and flossing methods are also considered the best way to prevent tooth decay.
Effective preventive dentistry is aimed at identifying and stopping early dental issues before they arise. If you need to visit your dentist for fillings, resin restorations, root canals or extractions, you have gone beyond preventive dental care.
Your Preventative Dentistry Guide
At-home oral hygiene. The most important prevention technique is brushing and flossing at least twice a day (or after every meal) to remove dental plaque, a film-like coating that forms on your teeth.
If not removed, plaque can build up and produce dental tartar, a hardened, sticky substance with acid-producing bacteria that cause tooth decay and lead to gum disease.
Fluoride use. Fluoride strengthens teeth and prevents tooth decay. Fluoride treatments are provided in dental offices, and dentists recommend using fluoride toothpaste and mouth rinses at home.
Diet. A balanced diet is a dental health essential. Foods with sugars and carbohydrates feed the bacteria that produce dental plaque, while calcium-poor diets increase your chances of developing gum (periodontal) disease and jaw deterioration.
Regular dental visits. For best results, Gentle Dental recommends regular dental check-ups every six months; more often if you’re at higher risk for oral diseases.
Dental cleanings and screenings. Dental cleaning is recommended every six months to remove dental plaque and stains that you are unable to remove yourself, as well as to check for signs of tooth decay.
Mouthguards. Gentle Dental recommends the use of custom made and moulded Mouthguards to prevent sporting injuries and damage to the teeth through contact sports. Each mouth-guard is moulded and fitted precisely to the patient's mouth to increase protection and strength.
Orthodontics. A bad bite (malocclusion) can impair eating and speaking, and crooked teeth are harder to keep clean. Correcting, an improper bite with orthodontics may include the use of dental braces or clear teeth aligners (invisible braces).
Sealants. Sealants are thin composite coatings that can be placed on the chewing surfaces of children's back permanent teeth to protect them from tooth decay.
Avoid smoking and drinking. Smoking and alcohol consumption can negatively affect your oral health. Apart from dry mouth, tooth discolouration and plaque build-up, smoking can also help cause gum disease, tooth loss and even oral cancer.
Benefits of Preventive Dentistry
Because oral health is linked to your overall health, preventive dentistry is important to your total well being. Oral diseases can interfere with eating, speaking, daily activities and your self-esteem.
Preventive dentistry can result in less extensive – and less expensive – treatment for any dental conditions that may develop, and help you keep your natural teeth for a lifetime.
As part of our commitment to Preventative Dentistry, Gentle Dental has a No Gap Dental Care* offer that covers a Dental Check-up + X-Ray + Professional Dental Clean + Fluoride treatment.