5 Best Methods We Recommend for Interdental Cleaning
Food and plaque can build up between the teeth. This can result in gum disease and decay. So it is very important that we educate our patients on the different options available for them to remove the plaque from in between their teeth. Flossing is not fun, and so we educate our patients on quick and easy ways to do this dull and mundane chore. If flossing is still a challenge, we can find other means that will best suit you. Contact us for a hygiene appointment if this is the case for you. Compliance comes with simplicity!
Flosspicks: these are perfect for people with challenged dexterity or bigger sized hands. They are quick and easy to use, and also have tension control which allows the floss to surround the sides of the tooth with each flossing action without breaking.
Tepe brushes: these are little interdental brushes which fit between the teeth. They come in different sizes and are colour coded depending on the size. They are quick and easy to use and very useful for removing plaque from posterior contacts and under retainers. These too have become a very popular means of interdental cleaning
Tufted Super Floss (Stiff End) Variable Thickness: This type of floss is made of increments of soft tufts and which alternates with standard floss. For use in: implant abutments, teeth with open contact areas, wide embrasures, sites of receded gums, bridges, orthodontic appliances and beneath tight contact areas.
Flosscan come in many forms: waxed floss, waxed dental tape, minted floss, fluoride coated floss. The type that is best for you depends on your dexterity, what types of restorations you have and what you prefer. This will be decided by your hygienist at your hygiene session
Water pick: This is a type of water flosser, also called a dental water jet. They work by squirting a bit of water between the teeth under pressure and thus removing plaque. They are a fun gadget to use and increase patient compliance when it comes to interdental cleaning. We do however advise patients to use the water pick in conjunction with one of the conventional methods to ensure maximum plaque removal.
5 interesting facts we should all know about CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation)
The manikin on which we practice CPR on is called ‘Resusci Anne’
Did you know Michael Jackson’s song ‘Annie are you ok?’ is based on Resusci Anne?
Resusci Anne is based on the death mask of a young unidentified lady who drowned in River Seine in the late 1880’s.
We used to have to give the ‘kiss of life’ during CPR, as in 2 breaths to 30 chest compressions, but this is not the case anymore, just chest compressions may be enough to keep a person alive until an ambulance or help arrives.
Not sure about what rate to give your chest compressions? Think of the song ‘Staying Alive’ and that’s the beat to which you would have to give your 30 chest compressions – one every 2 seconds.
The Dental Spa team had the privilege of having an afternoon of a CPR / Basic Life Support tutorial with Dr Joe Omar of Sedation Solutions last week. We revised our CPR techniques and refreshed all the medical emergencies which could possibly happen in the dental chair. Who knew a CPR refresher course could be so much fun! Thank you Dr Joe for a fun filled afternoon.
5 things we (unknowingly) do which could damage our teeth!
I really enjoyed watching this clip about this gentleman who is the world’s fastest coconut husker – he can supposedly shred a coconut down to size with nothing but his teeth, in just a few seconds. The very thought of it makes me think ‘Ouch!’, but I think the effect this may have on his teeth is the last thing on his mind….
So it got me thinking – what things do we do on a day to day basis that could damage our teeth, and we aren’t even aware of it.
1. Shredding coconuts with our teeth: Done repeatedly, this could damage the enamel. I can imagine the gentleman in the video will have very worn down incisors, if he doesn’t already, then it will eventually happen, given the fact he spends his days tearing at the husks of the coconuts. Then there is the sugar element – if teeth are exposed to coconut sugar repeatedly, this will eventually result in decay of the teeth.
2. Biting pens and nails: How many of you know which pen is yours just by how badly chewed it looks? And a lot of people do it on very subconscious level. Biting pens also thins the enamel, which will eventually result in chipped incisors and over a period of time, worn down incisors. I can always tell people who bite their nails – they have very small nail beds, and a few chips on their front teeth.
3. Opening water bottles with a teat using the teeth: This I am guilty of. I love drinking my water from a bottle with a teat. And I prize it open using my front teeth. Done repeatedly, this could damage the front teeth. I have the evidence – a very small chip on my front tooth. Needless to say, I have stopped that habit now!
4. Using our front teeth as replacement scissors: Yes, next time you are holding the sellotape, just make sure you have the scissors handy, so you don’t end up using your teeth. This, I think, we are all guilty of!
5. Brushing our teeth too hard: So we all want nice clean teeth and fresh breath. But one thing we must avoid doing is brushing too hard. This just wears the enamel away and damages our teeth. It causes recession and results in sensitive teeth. Always use a soft bristled toothbrush, avoid overzealous toothbrush. And if you can, invest in a good electric toothbrush.
A misconception about oral health is that you must scrub your teeth to get them clean, this is not the case! Plaque (the soft substance which builds up on the gum line) is removed more effectively using a soft massaging action.
By scrubbing you can actually damage the gums and cause them to recede, which leaves the roots of the teeth exposed and can lead to sensitivity.
Ensure you are using a toothbrush with soft to medium bristles, and if you are using an electric brush, take care not to press down too hard onto the gums.
If you are concerned about the way you brush, book an appointment with one of our hygienists who will be more than happy to give you some oral hygiene instruction.
2. Improper Flossing
Care must also be taken when flossing, as aggressive flossing can also damage the gums. Try to stick to a good quality floss (waxed flosses or tapes are more gentle) and make sure you use slow, controlled movements to ‘scoop’ plaque from just under the gum margin (not a sawing action!)
3. Hormonal Changes in women
During puberty, pregnancy or the menopause the hormonal changes in women can lead to hyper-sensitivity to plaque bacteria, which can cause increased bleeding when plaque is present in the mouth.
‘Pregnancy Gingivitis’ is most common during the second trimester and should not be overlooked as just being ‘because I’m pregnant’ the thing to remember is no plaque = no bleeding. Ignoring the early signs can lead to progression into the more advanced type of gum disease ‘periodontitis’ which can in worse cases lead to tooth loss.
4. Vitamin deficiency
Vitamin C deficiency or ‘scurvy’ its medical term – leads to painful, swollen gums which bleed easily. Fortunately these days it is very rare in the UK. Personally I have only ever come across one person suffering with it, in my halls at university, who spent his entire student loan during Fresher’s Week and ate nothing but porridge for three weeks…
Vitamin K deficiency
Vitamin K plays a key role in the body’s blood clotting mechanism, so if you don’t have enough of it then the there is an increased risk of sporadic or excessive areas in the body including the gums! Now pass me the Kale!
5. Last but certainly of least….PLAQUE!!
When a patient complains of bleeding gums it is more often than not a result of plaque being present in the mouth. Remember – the term is tooth brushing, but it is essential to also clean the margins where the gums and teeth meet and also between the teeth!
As plaque is full of bacteria the body’s response is to send lots of blood containing white defense cells to the area to try and protect itself. However it cannot remove the plaque so the condition will continue until YOU remove the problem.
Luckily in most cases the condition is completely reversible, and once the plaque is removed your gums will return to normal. However, if the battle between your body and the plaque bacteria continues for long enough, there is a risk that the fibres and bone under the gums which hold your teeth in place can become damaged, and this can eventually lead to tooth loss.
So if you are experiencing bleeding, book an appointment with us today and we will be happy to help you overcome the problem. Call us on 02078369107
You wouldn’t walk around with grime under your fingernails…so don’t walk around with it between your teeth!Just because the majority of the time you can’t see plaque in the mouth, doesn’t mean it isn’t there.When plaque is left on the teeth for a long time it releases compounds which cause bad breath. So make sure you floss to keep your mouth feeling fresh!
2. It will help to prevent gum disease from occurring or progressing
Combining brushing with flossing is more effective than just brushing alone. This is because when we brush we can only reach three out of the five of the tooth surfaces, so we need to floss to get the remaining two clean!
If we don’t, plaque gets caught in the spaces between our teeth, and can lead to bleeding and inflamed gums. In worse cases it can also lead to destruction of the fibres and bone that hold the teeth into place – this is the advance type of gum disease, the leading cause of tooth loss!
Plaque between the teeth can also cause decay, so it is also important to clean in between with floss so you don’t end up needing a filling!
4. Flossing prevents unsightly tartar build up
Floss reaches underneath the gum line and is great at preventing tartar from building up on the teeth. Tartar is plaque which has been hardened by saliva, and can only be removed with special instruments by the hygienist.
Tartar also stains very easily, so to keep that sparkling smile make sure you floss regularly!
If you notice you have tartar build up then book an appointment to see one of our hygienists today.
5. It will save you money in the long run!
If you look after your teeth properly it significantly reduces the risk of decay and gum disease, which can lead to needing things such as roo
t canal treatments, crowns, bridges and implants. All of these treatments are costly and require a lot more maintenance than natural teeth. So what are you waiting for? Get flossing today!