DENTAL HYGIENE FAQs
Do I have to be a Clarence House patient to have a hygienist visit?
No - you can now come to our practice purely for your hygiene visits as a Direct Access patient.
Why are my gums so important?
Simply put, your gums and bone support your teeth and act as their foundation. The weaker the foundation, the less support your teeth have and the more likely you are to lose them. Gum disease will weaken the ability of your bone and gums to act as the support for your teeth. Gum disease is the most common disease known to man, affecting 90% of the world's population and is responsible for the loss of more teeth than tooth decay.
My gums bleed when I brush my teeth. Should I be worried?
Bleeding is a sign of gum disease. You may see blood on your tooth brush or in the rinsing water when cleaning your teeth. Your gums may also bleed when you are eating, leaving a bad taste in your mouth. It is important to see a hygienist as soon as possible. They will be able to help you to remove the plaque causing the gum disease and teach you how to prevent it happening again.
What causes gum disease?
Gum disease is caused by a film of bacteria called plaque. You may have noticed this as a sticky, yellowish deposit on your teeth. Plaque is formed constantly on your teeth and gums as is what makes them feel 'furry'. The bacteria in plaque causes inflammation and the eventual breakdown of the attachment between the gum and the tooth, leading to pockets. If plaque is left, it can absorb calcium from the saliva to form hard tartar. This cannot be removed by brushing and traps more bacteria under it, whilst preventing access when brushing and flossing. Tartar requires removal by the hygienist.
Surely I will know if there's a problem?
Most people suffering from gum disease are unaware that they are, for a variety of reasons. Until the later stages, it is usually completely painless and there are few obvious symptoms. Unchecked gum disease progresses and this can lead to tooth loss. People commonly only notice once teeth become loose - this may be too late. However if treated promptly and early, the disease can be slowed, stopped and sometimes reversed.