how can a dental hygienist help?
Your dental hygienist will carry out a thorough cleaning using both hand and ultrasonic instruments, depending on need and your personal preference. Any calculus (tartar) and any stains will be removed, and she will also polish them to give a lovely clean feeling. As necessary she will use local anaesthetic to be sure you do not have any discomfort.
An important part of the treatment will be to give you advice about the best home care methods to remove the bacterial plaque. This builds up on your teeth and gums and needs to be removed every day at home keep your mouth healthy. Plaque is a cause of gum inflammation and also dental decay.
Smoking is always detrimental to the health of your mouth – if you are trying to give up your hygienist may be able to give you some useful advice. We are proud to have already helped many patients with this.
A healthy mouth reduces your risk of heart disease and stroke. The bacteria in dental plaque can enter the bloodstream and so increase the likelihood of health concerns. Poor oral hygiene has also been linked to diabetes, infertility, heart disease, erectile dysfunction and even cancer.
More often than not, patients who are aware of bad breath (halitosis) have an underlying dental problem.
Airflow Cleaning System
The air flow system is great for removing deep and hard to get to stains, such as for smokers or heavy tea/coffee drinkers.
We use this system when appropriate and there is a supplementary £24.00 charge for all airflow cleaning appointments.
Direct Access Hygienist visits
You can book an oral hygienist appointment whenever you like – it is no longer necessary to have a dentist’s referral.
The first appointment with the hygienist under direct access will be 45 minutes or if requested by the patient 60 minutes.
Limitations of direct access:
1- Treatment provided is periodontal management only and is not a substitute for the care provided by a dentist.
2- Dental hygienists can not diagnose oral conditions but can suggest an appropriate referral.
3- Boston House Dental Clinic will not provide compensation for any lost restorations, broken or damaged teeth, infection or pain through treatment received through Direct access.
4- Dental hygienists can refuse to see a patient if they feel it is in their best interest and should instead see a general dentist.
5- As part of the patients ongoing care it is recommended that all patients see their dentist on a regular basis.
6- For patients with their own general dentist – The dentist will set limits for hygiene access without the need for routine examination. This will be a maximum of two years, but could be less depending on the persons individual treatment needs/ duty of care.
meet our dental hygienists
Routine oral hygienist visits are a key part of preventive dental care. To keep your mouth really healthy we recommend regular treatment.
We have two courteous and knowledgeable registered dental hygienists; Lucy Grimsey and Lucy Balogova, who all treat patients in the same gentle, but thorough, way.
Our patients usually see their hygienist on a 2, 3, 4, 6 or even 12 monthly basis, depending on need. Each person is different, so you will be advised how soon your next routine visit should be, and how long an appointment you will need. Some people need a full session of an hour, but for others 45 minutes is all that is needed. We often book these routine appointments in advance, so they don’t get forgotten.
Frequently asked questions:
1- What might my cleaning appointment include?
- Removal of calculus (tartar): calculus is hardened plaque that accumulates on the tooth surface both above and below the gum line. Tartar can only be removed by special dental instruments.
- Removal of plaque: plaque is a sticky colourless film consisting of living bacteria, food debris and saliva. Action of plaque can cause gum inflammation (gingivitis) and, in certain instances, the loss of the bone needed for the support of the tooth (periodontitis).
- Teeth polishing: gentle tooth polishing removes stains and plaque and can help you enjoy that ‘just left the dentist feeling’.
- Airflow Polishing System: this is a gentle and modern system which helps us to remove tough to get to stains. It is particularly useful for individuals who are smokers, eat and drink foods with colourants like tea, coffee and curries or have particularly crowded teeth making home tooth cleaning more difficult.
- Oral hygiene instructions: these are steps and techniques which we will help you to develop and master. These home techniques will help you reduce the future risks of decay and gum disease and maintain a fresh clean mouth
- Smoking cessation advice: We are very proud to have been able to help many of our patients to reduce or stop smoking. We are here to help and assist when our patients feel the time is appropriate.
2- How much time should i book for?
45 minute appointments: Are appropriate for individuals whose oral hygiene is good to moderate and who don’t need much instructions in oral hygiene techniques such as tooth brushing or inter-dental cleaning.
60 minute appointments: Are more suitable in the following circumstances:
– Intensive oral hygiene instructions- tooth and or dietary advice.
– Presence of tenacious deposits of calculus particularly below the gum level.
– General or hard to get to staining. Mostly seen in smokers or heavy users of foods with colourants such as tea/coffee.
– Patients with a history of or active periodontal disease, severe Gingivitis or high rates of dental decay.
– Patients needing additional pain control through the administration of Local Anaesthesia.
– patients who are at the start of complex dental treatments such as fixed orthodontic treatment or a full mouth reconstructions.
– Direct Access Hygiene patients.
– Hygiene with airflow.
3- How regularly should i see the hygienist?
The interval for cleaning can vary between individuals and can be from 1,3,4,6, 9 and 12 months. These intervals are monitored and are reassessed regularly and are changed depending on the risk factors.
Individuals with good to moderate oral hygiene fall in the 6 to 12 monthly interval category. Your dentist and hygienist, in consultation with you, will help to draw up the appropriate time intervals.
Risk factors considered:
- Speed at which plaque, staining, dental decay or gum (periodontal) disease can develop.
- Existing or potential damage to the foundation bone around the teeth as a consequence of active or historic periodontal disease (gum disease).
- Presence of medical conditions which can increase the risks of periodontal disease or dental decay such as diabetes or Sjogrens syndrome.
- Presence of habits such as smoking.
- Risk factors associated with the current condition of the teeth. Such as the number, position or extent of the existing restorations.
4- What is Direct Access?
Since 1 May 2013, Direct Access allows patients the option of seeing a registered hygienist or dental therapists without having to be seen by a dentist or needing a prescription from a dentist.
However only dentists can still carry out the full range of dental treatments, prescribe local anaesthesia and write prescription for medicines. Routine dental examinations with your dentist are the cornerstone of preventative dentistry.
Direct access hygiene visit are 45 minutes to 60 minutes in duration. This is to allow enough time for your hygienist to carry out the professionally required checks such as those for medical, dental and social history.
Patients should be aware that visiting the hygienist is not the same as having a dental exam with a dentist.
5- what are the Benefits of dental Hygiene visits?
During your regular dental visits, you will be advised to undertake dental cleaning. Poor oral hygiene can be a contributing factor to a multitude of both dental and medical problems. Attending your dentist regularly and undergoing professional cleaning is an essential component to good oral health.
You may be surprised to learn that some of the benefits of clean teeth extend far beyond your mouth too. Here are 5 of the benefits to your oral and physical health that regular professional cleaning will provide:
Prevent tooth loss
Gum disease begins with a build-up of plaque and can end in tooth loss. Plaque is a build-up of bacteria which happens to everyone but it does need to be cleaned off from around your gumline regularly to keep your gums in top condition. Your dentist will help remove the plaque to reduce the risk of losing your teeth or developing periodontal disease.
Alongside gum disease, plaque and cavities come hand in hand. Left to its own devices, plaque will attach to the enamel on your teeth and release acids which cause erosion and cavities. A good professional clean will help to rid your teeth from plaque.
Dental cleaning will help to reduce or even remove staining on your teeth. Coffee, wine and tobacco are some of the most common causes of discolouration. A good clean will leave your teeth looking brighter and sometimes even whiter.
Improve your health
A healthy mouth reduces your risk of heart disease and stroke. The bacteria which is present in plaque can enter the bloodstream which increases the likelihood of these serious health conditions. Poor oral hygiene has also been linked to diabetes, infertility, heart disease, erectile dysfunction and even cancer.
Prevent bad breath
More often than not, when bad breath or halitosis is present it is due to an underlying dental problem. Regular, professional oral hygiene is crucial to preventing bad breath.
Get in touch to book your hygienist appointment today
BHDDC is a dentist in Moorgate, London. Whether you’re looking for a routine dental examination, dealing with a dental emergency, or need a local hygienist, we can help. Get in touch with our professional and caring team today.