Last updated: Apr 22, 2021

You clean your teeth at least twice a day and floss regularly, so why is it necessary to see a dental hygienist at your regular dental checkups? Surely, this isn’t really needed and is simply a waste of time and money?

Lots of people think this way and imagine that having a reasonable oral hygiene routine is enough to keep their teeth and gums clean and healthy.

However, seeing a dental hygienist at Park Avenue Smiles should be a part of your regular preventative dental plan. Far from being a waste of money and time, seeing your hygienist for regular dental cleaning can be more cost-effective and potentially save you hours in the dental chair.

This is because your hygienist can make sure your teeth and gums remain strong and healthy, helping to prevent common dental diseases.

Still not convinced? Here are some of the reasons why you shouldn’t skip your hygienist appointments.

Preventing Gum Disease

This is top of the list for a very good reason because gum disease is the number one cause of tooth loss worldwide. It is a bacterial infection causing bleeding gums that are painful and tender to touch, bad breath, and eventually, lose teeth.

The good news is that gum disease is entirely reversible when caught during its early stages, at which stage it is called gingivitis. Regular dental visits will help to detect this disease at its earliest stage, probably before you have even noticed anything is wrong. Usually, the most common treatment for early gum disease is having your teeth cleaned professionally.

Gum disease is caused when plaque bacteria build up over your teeth and gums. If it has been a while since you last brushed your teeth, try running your tongue over them. You may well feel a sticky layer which is dental plaque.

When you brush your teeth, most of this layer is removed, but it’s almost certain that some of it will remain and particularly around the gum line and in between your teeth. Dental plaque hardens into the calculus that produces the toxins that inflame and infect your gums.

Patient Education

Dental hygienists are great educators and especially if you do need help with your brushing and flossing routine. Because they can identify areas of your mouth that need more attention, they can show you how to improve your brushing and flossing techniques, ensuring you get your teeth and gums thoroughly clean each time. It’s information that can be extremely useful and especially if you hate flossing.

Our dentists at Park Avenue Smiles know that many people fail to floss regularly unless they particularly need to, for example, if they have something stuck between their teeth or just before a dental appointment!

However, dental professionals can always tell who flosses regularly and who doesn’t because it’s such an excellent habit for better gum health. Also, once you have been shown how to floss properly, you’ll be surprised at how quick and easy it can be.

Interdental picks or a water floss. Alternatively, your hygienist can show you other tools to use that may be better suited to your needs. For example, people with limited dexterity and who find it challenging to use dental floss might be better off with interdental pics or a water flosser that is much easier to use and equally as effective.

If you have other questions about your dental health, it’s always worth asking your hygienist. You’ll find they are thrilled to help you, and the more you know and understand your oral health, the better you can control and maintain it.

Protecting Your General Health

Did you realize your dental and general health are very closely connected?

When you look after your teeth and gums, it helps to protect your overall health. Poor oral hygiene has been linked to the development of other serious diseases that include:

  • heart disease
  • respiratory problems
  • diabetes

If you already have some of these health problems, it’s even more crucial to take care of your teeth and gums.

Get a Whiter Smile

Who doesn’t want a whiter and brighter smile that sparkles with good health?

This can be yours after your dental hygiene appointment because your hygienist will remove calculus that can appear yellow and discolored, and they will gently polish your teeth too.

Polishing your teeth helps to remove some surface stains caused by lifestyle habits like drinking tea and coffee or red wine, or by smoking.

Gain Fresher Breath

After your teeth have been professionally cleaned, you will notice your entire mouth feels ultra-clean and fresh, and this can help improve your breath.

There is nothing better than that just been to the dentist feeling of having a super clean mouth and teeth that feel and look fresh, shiny, and smooth. It’s well worth booking a hygiene appointment if you are concerned you have bad breath or simply want to freshen up your smile.

Detecting Other Dental Problems

A dental hygienist will closely examine your mouth to see if any visible problems require closer attention from a dentist. Also, they will usually evaluate your gum health using an instrument called a periodontal probe to measure the gaps between your gums and your teeth.

These gaps give a good idea as to the overall health of your gums because a deeper gap could indicate a problem. Your dental hygienist will measure these gaps, comparing them from one visit to the next, so your dental health is continually monitored.

Dental hygienists collaborate closely with dentists so if they think you have something wrong with your teeth or gums, they will recommend you book a dental visit. A quick and easy way to maintain good dental health is to see your hygienist and the dentist at the same time, at six-monthly intervals.

For just an hour or so every six months, you can keep your teeth and gums in great shape safe in the knowledge that they always look their best.