Hygiene and Recare Appointments
Even if you are the most diligent brusher and heroic flosser, there are simply things that your dental hygienist can clean that you can’t.
In the past, we found that many of our patient’s lives are very busy and they usually forget to call us for regular hygiene (cleaning) visits and wait until they are experiencing discomfort. In order to help you maintain optimal dental health, we ask that you reserve an ‘ideal’ time to come in for your next visit. Our Hygienists - Eleni and Mandi, will organize with you after each visit a pre-appointment your next visit with us.
As these appointments are booked often 6 months in advance, our front desk staff will call you 3 weeks prior to confirm that the appointment time and date is still suitable. If we are unable to speak to you, please call us back to confirm or re-schedule the appointment to a more convenient time.
Beyond brightening your smile and removal of dental tartar with a thorough cleaning, regular hygiene appointments are important as we also evaluate the health of your gums (which has been linked to diabetes, stroke, premature birth, heart disease and cancer) and screen for serious threats like oral cancer.
We also recommend that you have annual re-care (check-up) appointments with x-rays, as part of your regular hygiene appointments. These check-ups are extremely important for catching and treating problems early, before they become major issues.
We will look for:
- signs of gum disease
- cavities, root cavities, and cavities under existing fillings
- signs of oral cancer
- deterioration of fillings, crowns, or other dental work
- hairline tooth fractures
- impacted wisdom teeth
- cysts and tumours
Remember, prevention is definitely better than cure in regards to both your health and finances.
Treatments for Gum Disease: Gingivitis or Periodontitis
What is Gum Disease?
Bacterial infections develop when food, bacteria, and tartar are left on the teeth. An infection can then develop along the gum line.
The disease is the body’s response to the bacterial infection in your gum tissue.
The bacteria form a community called a biofilm that grows down into the space or pocket that develops between the teeth and gum tissue.
Common symptoms of oral bacterial infections in the gum tissue include:
- Bleeding gums when brushing or flossing
- Receding gums (teeth appear longer)
- Obvious plaque, tartar or calculus
- Spaces developing between your teeth
- Swollen, red or tender gums
- Persistent bad breath
- Sensitive teeth
- Teeth are loose or mobile
The theories linking oral bacteria to other diseases explain how the mouth can be a portal for bacteria to spread to the rest of your body.
Treatments that we offer for gum disease include:
- Perio Protect
Perio Protect® is a solution for those who have or wish to prevent Periodontal Disease. Upon evaluation, a treatment plan using the Perio Protect Method is developed specifically for each of our patients.The Perio Protect Method is a combination of treatments:
- At Home: Placing Doctor prescribed solutions into periodontal pockets with a customized dental tray to disrupt biofilm growth. This part of the treatment is required for only minutes each day for most patients.
- In Office: The standard hygiene and cleaning procedures performed by your hygienist, such as root planning and scaling.
The combination of the above treatments help to manage biofilms (communities of bacteria), growing in the spaces or pockets between teeth and gum tissue.
- Laser Therapy
Laser therapy is another solution to healing gum disease.
The beam of light produced by the laser gently disinfects and evaporates diseased tissues from around the tooth and inside the gum pocket. This treatment interrupts the bacterial destruction of the tissues and bone, giving the gum pocket a chance to heal.Systematic, repeated visits (generally 2-8), allow the gum pocket to be disease-free and sometimes even allows tissues to reattach to the pocket to a normal, or near-normal depth. The number of visits required is determined on a case-by-case basis and will be outlined in your personalized treatment plan developed by Dr Martin. This therapy works most effectively on gum disease when combined with the more traditional cleaning and hygiene treatments (root planning and scaling).We also use laser therapy to treat mouth ulcers (canker sores) and cold sores. Please ask us for more information about this service.
Oral and Cancer Screenings
Banff Dental Care includes an oral cancer screening with every new patient examination and recommends that our patients have regular oral cancer screenings performed by us annually.
Using the VELscope, a wide variety of oral abnormalities can be discovered — often before they’re visible to the unassisted eye. Discovering soft tissue abnormalities early is particularly important in the fight against oral cancer. Because the VELscope examination assists in early detection, cancer can be caught before it has time to spread, potentially saving lives through less invasive, more effective treatment.
Make sure that your mouth is as healthy as it can possibly be… The next time you visit us, request a VELscope exam.
How it Works
The VELscope system that we use helps visualize abnormalities in the mucosal tissues of your lips, mouth and upper throat. It uses a distinctive blue-spectrum light causes the soft tissues of the mouth to naturally fluoresce. Healthy tissues fluoresce in distinctive patterns — patterns that are visibly disrupted by trauma or disease. In just two minutes, with no rinses, stains or discomfort, a VELscope examination lets us improve our assessment of your overall oral health.
You can also perform an oral cancer screening self-examination between dentist visits. Read our article ‘Oral Cancer Screening Self Examination’ (internal link to article PDF from news page) to find out how.