This statement is a simple truth – the degree to which it is applied is directly correlated with your teeth’s life expectancy. Your teeth are designed to last a lifetime. They’re extremely strong and resilient, and nowadays, we have all kinds of ways to repair and care for them. But looking after them every day is crucial to help them withstand everything they’re exposed to.
Your oral hygiene depends on several actions:
The first two are your responsibility, but scaling requires professional tools and techniques that only your dentist and hygienist can handle. As well as thorough dental hygiene and detection of cavities by the dental hygienist, there are also treatments that help you stay better protected against different tooth complaints. For instance, there are two common situations where you can take preventative action:
With optimum protection in mind, it is important to note that certain risk factors have an impact on the health of your teeth and require particularly close attention when it comes to dental health. Here are the four main examples:
Tobacco use is the biggest risk factor in the development of gum disease. ,The systemic effects associated with ingesting nicotine are reduction in the activity of the body’s defence cells and a decrease in gum vascularisation. This means that inflammation, which is the body’s first line of defence, cannot develop in the gums. So, the patient presents with gums that appear healthy and don’t bleed, but, in reality, bacteria are present and can progress because of the body’s deficient reaction. This means that by the time the patient first notices the initial symptoms of their disease, it is often very advanced. This systemic action of nicotine is compounded by the local build-up of toxic substances on root surfaces. This can also reduce responsiveness to treatment for periodontitis.
There are multiple links between oral health and diabetes. Firstly, diabetes is a risk factor for the development of gingivitis and periodontitis. Its negative impact on the functioning of the body’s defence cells helps bacteria persist in the periodontium. Studies have also shown that periodontitis increases the risk of imbalances in blood sugar levels in patients suffering from diabetes mellitus and results in a higher risk of developing diabetic complications (such as changes to healing processes, cardiovascular disease and kidney disease). We encourage patients with diabetes who have lost many of their teeth to follow a dental rehabilitation programme to enable them to chew correctly for the purposes of proper nutrition.
The latest scientific research suggests a close link between these conditions and gum health. It recommends systematically treating gum inflammation with precautionary measures, as it can result in two major risks:
During pregnancy, periodontal bacteria in the bloodstream can travel straight to the foetal environment and result in a low birth weight for the newborn or premature birth.
That’s why it’s important during pregnancy to look after your dental hygiene and have regular check-ups with the hygienist.
For more information on the links between gum disease and general health, visit this page: http://www.efp.org/
or watch the video below.
Test your knowledge and make sure your own mouth is no longer a mystery to you.
Brushing your teeth once a day is sufficient
Dental plaque, which causes cavities, reforms on the surface of the teeth every six hours. To avoid this, it’s crucial that you brush your teeth after every meal.
Evening brushing is the most important
At night, the tongue and cheeks barely move, causing saliva to stagnate, which promotes the formation of plaque and, therefore, cavities.
It is also recommended to brush your tongue properly when you brush your teeth in the morning, to remove all the bacteria that accumulate on it.
I lost a tooth, it can wait
When we lose a tooth, nature abhors a vacuum: the tooth on the jaw opposite will move: the top one “comes down”, the one at the bottom “climbs up”, the teeth on either side of the missing tooth will move towards the “gap”.
The result: all the teeth on the arch beside the missing tooth will move, and the resulting change in the position of the neighbouring teeth can promote cavities and gum problems. Nowadays, thanks to implants, we can replace the missing tooth without “mutilating” neighbouring teeth, and do so rapidly, before the downward spiral disrupting other teeth begins.
A pregnant woman cannot cure her teeth
It is possible and even recommended to treat patients during their pregnancy, unless, of course, a contraindication has been diagnosed by their gynaecologist. However, we do avoid any X-rays and any non-essential anaesthesia for the first three months.
Pregnancy causes significant hormonal changes that may result in bleeding gums.
What is the age of the first visit to the dentist?
The first visit to the dentist is recommended from the age of three. Initial contact with the dentist in our practice helps your child become familiar with their surroundings in a more fun and playful context, rather than a purely medical one. Encountering this environment (and the dentist!) for the first time in an emergency can be an experience that may leave behind vivid negative memories.
Are there cases of implant rejection?
Implants cannot be rejected. However, as with all surgical procedures, there is a risk that the procedure to fit a dental implant will not succeed. However, most of the time, the consequences have no impact on the patient’s health and usually only involve additional time being added to the treatment plan.
Is age a contraindication to implant placement?
The medical histories of patients who are elderly or very elderly are examined particularly vigilantly in order to take into account the patient’s general state of health or whether they are taking many medications. In elderly patients, surgery may entail altered procedures and longer healing times.
I am taking bisphosphonates, can I have an implant?
This is a major and essential contraindication for any bone surgery unless it is vital for the patient’s survival.