What To Expect During A Dental Hygiene Visit

What To Expect During A Dental Hygiene Visit

What to expect during a dental hygiene visit?

A fresh new year should come with a fresh, clean smile. Our dental hygiene treatments at Together Dental protect your oral health and can even help spot any issues before they become serious.

Many patients ask ‘What does a dental hygienist do?’, ‘What should I expect at a dental hygiene visit?’ and ‘What is it like visiting a dental hygienist?’. So, we’ve put together some helpful information on what to expect during your dental hygiene visit, along with some frequently asked questions.

What does a dental hygienist do?

A dental hygienist mainly deals with preventative dental health, as well as treating and preventing gum disease. A hygienist can show you the correct home care and help you make sure your teeth and gums are as healthy as possible.

They keep an eye on your gums to check for warning signs of more serious conditions such as gingivitis, an advanced type of gum disease that can lead to more complex problems.

Regular treatments from a hygienist combined with dental check-ups can greatly improve oral health and the overall appearance of your teeth.

Dental hygiene

What happens during a hygienist appointment?

Medical history check

Firstly, your dental hygienist will discuss both your general and oral health, and if there have been any recent changes to them. Discussing any recent changes will help the hygienist pinpoint any issues that may need special precaution before your treatment.

Checking for decay

The hygienist will examine your teeth and check for any decay. They will also note the location of the decay if they find any. They will then check for calculus and tartar before starting the hygiene treatment.

Oral cancer screening

Your hygienist is able to detect the early signs of oral cancer by performing an oral cancer screening. Oral cancer is highly curable if treated early. Your hygienist will offer you advice on the risk factors of oral cancer and how you can reduce them.

You will be more at risk of oral cancer if you are a smoker, drink excessive amounts of alcohol, or are infected with the HPV virus. You can find out more about Oral Cancer on the Mouth Cancer Foundation website.

Periodontal health check

The hygienist will use a very small probe that is placed in the pockets of your gums. This is to check your periodontal health and make sure that your gums are healthy.

A pocket space of 3mm is generally an indication of healthy gums. Anything between 4mm to 5mm shows periodontal disease that can be reversed with improved oral care at home.

Gum pockets measuring 6mm or more indicates that a more specialized treatment is needed. This could be with a general dentist or a gum specialist known as a Periodontist.

Scale & Polish

The hygienist will ‘scale’ your teeth either with hand tools or a sonic scaler which removes tartar build-up and plaque, especially in the areas that are hard to reach. Scaling also reduces gum inflammation and improves overall gum health.

Your teeth will then be air polished using a gentle abrasive polishing compound on the surface of your teeth. This will leave them feeling smooth and also make them more resistant to plaque.

Air polish treatment is a simple treatment that is much-loved by many of our patients. Straight-forward and refreshing airflow polishing (air-polish) effectively removes stains on the front and back of teeth.

The procedure works by using a fine jet of compressed air, water and fine powder particles to remove staining caused by coffee, tea, red wine, tobacco and some mouth washes.

Booking your next appointment

After your appointment has complete, your hygienist will offer you tailored advice on how to maintain the best oral health and demonstrate techniques that you can use at home. You can then book in your next appointment for in six months’ time.

We advise seeing a dental hygienist every six months. However, some hygienists will advise patients to visit more regularly depending on their oral health and if they are currently undergoing any dental treatment where a hygiene visit will benefit. 

How do I book a dental hygiene appointment?

If you’re looking for a refreshing clean for the new year, call us today on 0333 032 9339.

Alternatively, you can fill out one of our quick and easy online forms where one of our team members will be in touch to help book an appointment at a time that suits you.

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