Dental hygienists in Southampton
Dental hygiene is arguably the most important aspect of dentistry. No matter whether your teeth are in perfect condition, in the process of orthodontic treatment, or require extensive dental restoration, oral hygiene is the key to achieving and maintaining a beautiful, healthy smile. At Octagon Dental Centre our dental hygienists and dental therapists work both to treat and educate patients on the benefits of good dental health.
Plaque – a sticky film of bacteria that builds up around your gum line, attacking the tooth enamel and making gums vulnerable to disease.
Tartar – plaque that has hardened over time. This calcified substance essentially creates an enclosed breeding ground for bacteria.
Gingivitis – the early stages of gum disease, demonstrated by sore, swollen or bleeding gums. Gingivitis symptoms are reversible if you follow a good oral hygiene routine.
Periodontitis – gum disease, caused by the build-up of plaque, which will ultimately lead to tooth loss. Periodontitis requires urgent dental treatment.
The hygienist’s job is two-fold: to remove any build-up of plaque and tartar, the main causes of gum disease and tooth decay; and to advise patients on caring for their teeth in a way that will prevent future problems. It is usually recommended that adult patients see a hygienist every six months for a scale and polish – a dental deep-clean to remove plaque and tartar.
Dental therapists carry out certain areas of routine dentistry, such as fitting temporary fillings and taking dental impressions, alongside assisting patients who have specific needs, such as anxiety, and working with children. Health education is central to the dental therapist’s role, which includes one-to-one and family advice.
The tell-tale signs of an unhealthy mouth include sore, swollen or bleeding gums, and bad breath. Left unchecked, these conditions will ultimately lead to gum disease and tooth decay.