Dentistry is always going to have a certain element of having to fix problems brought on by tooth decay and gum disease, but more and more, modern dentistry focusses on ways to prevent dental problems.
Humans only get one set of teeth and making them last as long as possible is really important, especially now that it is not unusual to live as long as one’s 80s. That means adult teeth are having to last as long as 70 years. Can we do it? Can we get teeth to last that long? At Harley Street Dental Clinic, we believe we can with preventive dentistry.
The motto of preventive dentistry at the dentist in W1 is ‘teeth for life’, and we have developed a range of services aimed at helping you hang on to your natural teeth for as long as possible. Let’s take a look at a few of them now:
Check-ups are how dentists find out if anything is wrong with your teeth: decay, gum disease, erosion, attrition, teeth crumbling or splitting. We also check for abnormalities in the soft tissues of your mouth and in your neck. We can spot things such as decay, gum disease and mouth cancer before you will be able to feel they are there. By the time pain lets you know something is up, it will already be advanced. Earlier interventions are simpler and cheaper.
Scale and polish
A truly preventive treatment, a scale and polish removes dental plaque and calculus, which are a build-up of bacteria, that, while harmless in themselves, give off the acids that lead to decay and gum disease. Most people need twice-yearly visits to the hygienist, but if you are pregnant, have diabetes or are a smoker, you may need to come more often.
This is a progressive disease. If you have the early stage, gingivitis, you will need treatment from the dentist in W1 to stop it becoming advanced, when the disease attacks the bone beneath the gums and your tooth roots.
If you grind your teeth at night, a mouth guard can be made to prevent you damaging your teeth.