Oral hygiene is the practice of keeping the mouth & teeth clean to prevent dental problems such as cavities, gum diseases and bad breath. Oral hygiene maintenance includes:
Scale and polishing
The scale and polish procedure forms part of your 6-monthly visit to your dentist and is part of maintaining good oral hygiene. Scaling and polishing is a procedure using an ultrasound device to remove tartar and debris around the tooth, including under the gums. Polishing is using fluoride polishing paste to remove loose dirt and polish the teeth to a high gloss , leaving the tooth surface glossy and shiny
Fluoride can be administered to teeth directly depending on your age. Children and infants’ fluoride will be prescribed by your dentist according to their age and weight.
Fissure sealants are a way of protecting your teeth from caries by sealing off the grooves of your back teeth. It is plastic coatings that are placed on the biting surfaces of your back teeth to protect the teeth from decay. Fissure sealants do not last very long and should be topped up regularly as part of good oral hygiene maintenance. This procedure can be done by your dentist or oral hygienist.
Treatment of gum diseases
Gum disease is inflammation of the gums. This is caused by plaque that builds up under the gums, causing it to become swollen, reddened and bleed easily when you brush it. The only way to treat gum disease is by visiting your dentist or oral hygienist, where they will do a “scale and polish” treatment and remove al plaque and debris from your teeth and under your gums. This procedure should be done every 6 months and should be followed by good oral maintenance (daily brushing and flossing)
Treatment of sensitivity
The tooth covered by a protective layer, called the enamel, which protects the tooth from decay and sensitivity. When the enamel is worn through, or when your gums start to recede (move away), the tooth is exposed, causing sensitivity. The only way to relieve sensitivity is by visiting your dentist, where he or she will treat your sensitivity with a desensitizing gel, then advise you on how to maintain the sensitivity.