Few things can make a more lasting impression than that of a dazzling smile, and a dazzling smile usually requires a full set of sparkling white teeth. By the time these kinds of first impressions become important, the tooth fairy is no longer a favored visitor and a dentist is less scary than it used to be. Afterall, maintaining a healthy smile becomes more difficult as we get older. Tooth fairies are replaced with dental professionals, who we trust to keep cavities and decay at bay. Even so, a dental appointment can still spark some apprehension. This is where dental hygienists come in. Their role is to prevent and treat dental diseases while leaving the more advanced procedures to dentists. In one sense, if your visits with your dental hygienist goes well, and the preventative care and treatment you receive is good, you will rarely have to see the dentist. That’s right, if your brushing, flossing and eating habits prioritize good oral health, your teeth will reflect that. When you go for your check-ups, your hygienist will make an assessment. If they pick up on any issues, however minor, they can make recommendations for continued care and treatment. Some of the recommended practices include brushing twice per day, flossing regularly, eating foods high in calcium, phosphorus, water and fibre content such as vegetables, and avoiding DIY dental treatments.
If you happen to be at the stage where preventative care no longer helps, then your dental hygienist will guide you through what your next steps need to be. You might find yourself requiring more advanced tooth care of a substitutive nature. This is not so uncommon as 5% of adults between the ages of 20 and 64 have no teeth. Of the same cohort, 92% have dental caries in their permanent teeth. Excessive decay and missing teeth can affect one’s bite, speech, eating choices and even one’s bone structure. Depending on the extent of the damage, it can be remedied by using dental implants. Dental implants replace missing teeth while preserving bone structure, oral health, and appearance. Another more common and temporary approach is the use of dentures.
Summarily, it is agreeable that the preventative approaches to oral health are more advisable. Maintaining health is a less-painful approach to surgical options. Still, dental professionals deserve the appreciation whether they are preventing or treating oral problems that are known to be quite painful. In any case, the most obvious reason to love your dental hygienist is because they are likely the ones most likely to detect your dental problems and do so early. In terms of access, your hygienist is closer and more available to you than your dentist who does your surgeries. It is advisable to develop a good relationship with your dental hygienist since their screening can have a big impact on your long-term oral health. They are the ones who make recommendations on seemingly simple decisions such as which toothpaste might be right for you and this in fact might be a huge decision in the long run. Dental professionals aren’t fairies, but they are surely able to help you preserve a magical smile.