The best part about maintaining good dental habits is that you get to smile whenever you like and you get to speak to others as closely as you want without having to worry about bad breath. When we regularly remove plaque and tartar from our teeth, we remove odor-causing bacteria that can affect our day to day activities. Dental care is the preservation of a white smile that is free from tooth decay and gum disease. Dental care includes oral hygiene, oral surgery, and dentistry which aim to prevent the spread of bacteria and disease.

Oral hygiene is the regular practice of teeth cleaning that we undertake once in the morning and once at night. However, some individuals may take extra steps to prevent plaque buildup by brushing and flossing after every meal. Our dental health highly depends on the removal of plaque and tartar that can cause permanent damage to both the teeth and gums. When we take the right measures to tackle plaque we can eliminate the risk of cavities otherwise known as tooth decay and gum diseases like gingivitis or worse periodontitis. To maintain a satisfying healthy smile dentist recommend brushing and flossing on a daily basis.

Oral surgery can be required to treat a disease, an imperfection, or injury in the mouth and/or jaw and face. The oral surgery practice can include cosmetic/reconstructive surgery, craniofacial surgery, jaw, and face surgery otherwise known as maxillofacial regeneration. Common oral surgeries may involve the removal of an infected or decaying tooth, dental implants, cosmetic surgery, and corrective jaw surgery. Oral surgery is only an option when the problem cannot be treated with non-surgical procedures or depending on the seriousness of the infraction or infection.

Another aspect of dental care is maintaining regular visits to the dentist’s office. When we visit a dentist office, a dentist provides special cleaning services that aim to prevent the build-up of plaque and tartar. A dentist helps preserve the well-being of teeth by removing tartar and plaque from hard to reach places. In addition, regular dental visits can help prevent the spread of oral bacteria which can affect more than just the mouth area. Individuals who avoid regular dental checkups have a higher chance of developing a gum disease or experiencing tooth decay.

Dental care is the preservation of your pearly whites through preventative measures like regular brushing and flossing and dental check-ups. Individuals who wish to schedule a visit to the dentist are encouraged to contact the Downey Dental at 562-746-0350. We are ready to tackle gum disease and tooth decay to ensure the longevity of your teeth and gums.

Dental Care Provider

A dental care provider is anyone involved in the preservation of a good oral health. That can include the dentists, orthodontists, an oral surgeon, a dental hygienist, and certified dental assistants (CDA). More often than not, a dentist will take care of general procedures that include examining a tooth, providing advice on how to deal with the issue, and taking care of any cavity to prevent it from drilling down to the pulp of the tooth. Furthermore, dentists are capable of removing teeth and carrying out a root canal treatment. When things become more complicated and surgery is required a dentist may reference a specialist who is capable of treating the specific problem through surgery. In other cases, when teeth are not growing in the correct manner, a dentist may reference an orthodontist that can help correct the bite or crooked tooth. Finally, a dental hygienist is the person you will most likely meet first after the receptionists. The dental hygienists are not capable of prescribing a treatment, rather they are specialists in cleaning the teeth and gum to remove plaque and tartar. Like dental hygienists, a certified dental assistant may not prescribe a treatment but may assist with the preparation of an oral procedure.

Dental Care Practices

Some of the more common in-office dental care practices can be carried out by a general dentist. These practices include:

  • Cavity Treatment:
    • Tooth decay or the softening of a tooth enamel can lead to a cavity otherwise known as an opening or a pore. Cavities are formed when plaque bacteria breaks down sugary foods and produces an acid that weakens the enamel. Over time, plaque can attack the enamel of the tooth to the point where a cavity is formed. When a cavity forms, a dentist will drill the cavity to remove the bacteria and prevent it from spreading any further. The cavity is then filled with a sealant to prevent any food from entering the pore. When a cavity is left untreated, the bacteria may reach the center of the tooth known as the pulp. Once the pulp is infected with the bacteria, a root canal procedure is necessary to save the tooth. Cavities that are caught early on can help prevent tooth decay and gum disease.
  • Dental Cleaning:
    • Dental cleaning is an important aspect of maintaining a good oral health. When we floss and brush (in that order) for at least two minutes we effectively remove the plaque from our gums and teeth. Plaque is a colorless sticky coating around the teeth that forms daily and attacks the enamel of the tooth. The rates at which bacteria multiple is why daily cleaning is advised. In addition to regular brushing and flossing, it is crucial for your oral health to visit a dentist for a professional cleaning. The in-office dental cleaning process is more than just brushing a flossing. During a dental cleaning procedure, a dental hygienist will remove all of the plaque and tartar that builds between the teeth and gum line. Additionally, after the build-up has been removed with the use of dental floss and the dental probe, the teeth will be polished. Polished teeth are squeaky clean and smooth which helps keep bacteria from latching on. A dental cleaning and check-up treatment should be scheduled every six months or as prescribed by a dentist.
  • Dental Examination
    • A dental examination is a process of verifying that the oral tissues, teeth, and gums are in good health. A dental examination can be carried out with a mirror and probe. A mirror helps the dentist see behind the tooth and other hard to see places. The probe helps the dentist find any weak or sensitive tooth. Furthermore, a dentist will feel around your jaw, tonsil area, and neck to look for any signs of oral cancer. A dentist may also use an x-ray which will allow a dentist to see beneath the teeth down to the jaw and root of the tooth. An x-ray can help identify any signs of early osteoporosis or damaged teeth roots.
  • Dental Filling
    • A dental filling is necessary when a patient undergoes a cavity treatment or a root canal treatment. In both procedures, a dentist will use a drill to remove the bacteria from the tooth. The gap that is created is filled with a sealant to prevent any food or bacteria from building up and to prevent the spread of the bacteria. A filling is usually made from gold, copper, silver, zinc, porcelain, and composite resin. Most individuals choose a porcelain or composite resin filling because it will resemble the color of the tooth the most. On the other hand, a patient may choose a metal alloy or gold filling if it matches their style.
  • Dental X-Ray
    • A dentist uses x-rays to see what is underneath the teeth and to examine other parts of the mouth and adjacent regions. An x-ray can help a dentist identify cavities that cannot be seen with a mirror, the condition of the teeth roots, and the health of the jaw and maxilla (the upper teeth). An x-ray can help prevent tooth decay that may not be apparent to a dentist or dental hygienist at first look.
  • Tooth Extraction
    • Teeth may be pulled out for a variety of reasons. In one case, a tooth may be pulled out when a cavity has severely affected the tooth. A root canal procedure may help save a tooth that has an infected pulp, but if the bacteria has affected the root and other parts of the tooth, the only option may be to remove the tooth. In addition, a tooth may develop on top of another tooth which may affect their growth and development. When teeth are overlapping the best treatment, option may be to remove the overlapping tooth.
  • Oral Health Advice
    • A dentist is a specialist in oral health and is the most adequate person to ask about any oral concerns you may have. A dentist can provide advice on how to treat a tooth at home or on how to properly clean and maintain the health of your teeth. A dentist that knows your dental history and other important details pertaining to your oral health will be able to provide advice to address your specific needs.
  • Root Canal
    • A root canal treatment is needed when the pulp of the tooth has been infected with oral bacteria. Cavities develop when we fail to remove the sugars and bacteria that naturally develop as part of the chemistry of our mouth. Plaque releases acids that weaken the enamel of the tooth and create pores that allow the bacteria to affect the dentin (inner sensitive part of the tooth). A cavity that is left untreated can reach the pulp of the tooth. The pulp of the tooth contains all of the nerves and blood vessels of the tooth. When the pulp is removed through a root canal treatment the tooth will lose its heat sensitivity, but it will not affect the function of the tooth. After a root canal treatment, most individuals choose between a permanent filling or a crown placement.

A dentist is a specialist that can help in so much more than mentioned above. If you feel any tooth pain or swelling in the gums, or if you are simply experiencing bad breath, you may schedule a visit to your dentist to take care of the problem. Bad breath, swelling of the gums, and tooth irritation are all signs that indicate it’s time for a dental check-up.

Plaque, Teeth, and Gums

As mentioned above, the plaque is the reason cavities develop and may lead to oral cancers or infections. Plaque is a colorless sticky deposit that forms around the teeth and throughout the gumline. When plaque is not removed, the plaque will form into tartar. Tartar is the calcified porous deposit that forms around the teeth and can cause bad breath. Tartar can be yellow, green, brown, and black, and may only be removed using dentist equipment. Like plaque, tartar produces an acid due to the breakdown of sugars found in the mouth. The acid weakens the enamel causing tooth decay and may cause gum disease known as periodontitis. When tartar forms on the teeth, it may cause irreversible damage.

Fighting Plaque and Tartar

The best preventative measures you can take aside from regular dental visits is taking care of your teeth at home. When we brush and floss, we remove plaque that forms in our teeth as early as thirty minutes from our last cleaning session.

Brushing: Brushing your teeth should occur at least twice a day or as recommended by a dentist. The brush should be replaced every three months to prevent the buildup of bacteria on the toothbrush. Brushing away bacteria with an ADA approved toothpaste will ensure the removal of plaque.

Flossing: Flossing helps remove foods that are stuck between the teeth. Removing food on a daily basis can help prevent the buildup of tartar. Flossing should be performed at least once a day, however, some choose to floss after every meal.

Individuals of all ages should learn about the importance of maintaining good oral cleaning habits. Visiting the dentist office every six months and maintaining routine dental cleaning, will prevent tooth decay and gum disease. To learn more about ways to improve your oral health, you may visit our office located in Downey, CA. If you wish to schedule an appointment, you may reach our Downey Dentist at 562-746-0350.