Dental Hygienist + Gum Disease


DENTAL HYGIENIST

Deepa Singh is our highly trained university educated dental hygienist working directly under the supervision of Dr Deutsch.

Acting as a team, Dr Deutsch and Deepa Singh are able to deliver a much higher level of preventive dental care to help you maintain optimal dental and general health.

The Hygiene side of our practice is a very important part of our preventive care philosophy.

At each visit, the hygienist will carry out a specialized periodontal (gum) examination. Dr Deutsch will carry out a general check up and review any problems found.

The Hygienist’s role includes:

  • Oral Hygiene Instruction is personalized to your needs so that you will know the best way to look after your mouth
  • Dental education for patients so that they have a better understanding of their problems
  • Dietary advice in relation to tooth decay
  • Saliva Test to assess the quality of saliva and how it may affect you.
  • Re-mineralization advice on how to stop or prevent tooth decay your teeth if required.
  • Removal of plaque and calculus (tartar) above and below the gum
  • Advanced gum treatment under local anesthetic or inhalational analgesia

Model showing normal gum and bone levels. Other side shows gum disease and lost bone

GINGIVITIS
Gingivitis is an infection affecting only the gums surrounding teeth caused by bacteria accumulating on teeth near the gum line in dental plaque

A gingival pocket is a space between the gum and the root of the tooth.
In health a gingival pocket is between one and two millimetres deep and does not bleed on gentle probing with a special blunt measuring tool.
In early gingivitis the pocket enlarges to between two to three millimetres, is tender and bleeds when disturbed by cleaning or by probing.
Signs of gum disease are usually bleeding when cleaning teeth, redness, swelling and tenderness.

As gum disease progresses, due to infrequent or ineffective oral hygiene, the gingival pocket gets deeper tracking down the root and destroys the bone around the tooth.

Normal gum and bone levels

Model showing affects of gum disease and bone loss

Periodontitis is an infection affecting the bone around atooth. Gingivitis, if left unchecked will progress to periodontitis.

Signs of periodontis are bone loss around teeth, increased gingival pocket depth greater than four millimetres, gum recession, bleeding gums, loose or mobile teeth, teeth tenderwhen chewing as well as bad breath.

Patients are usually not aware of their condition until it is too late as initially there is normally no pain until later stages. In late stage gum disease swelling, tenderness on chewing and pain become obvious. Treatment at late stage gum disease is difficult and teeth are often lost.
It is critically important to treat gum problems at an early stage to prevent gum disease progressing.

Nearly one in four Australian adults have moderate/severe periodontitis.

  • 7.4% for 15-34 year olds
  • 24.5% for 35-54 year olds
  • 43.6% for 55-74 year olds
  • 60.8% for 75+ year olds

Source NSW Dental Association- Feb 2010