It’s October and that means – National Dental Hygiene Month!

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Brush, floss, rinse, repeat! It can all sound just a tad repetitive and in fact, it is! When it comes to oral health care you’re committing to a lifetime of doing the same thing over and over again, virtually from birth for the rest of your life – and at least two times a day at that! Think about it – for the average person that might mean brushing their teeth approximately (based on an average 82 year lifespan, less two years to account for pre-teeth and early brushing) 58,400 times in their life! That’s a lot of brushing and since dental hygienists are often the folks who spend a great deal of time with us, cleaning our teeth and showing us how to care for them, it seems only right to also celebrate them!

Your dental hygienist is an integral part of your oral health team. They are, more often than not, your first line of defense in caring for your teeth with regular cleanings and identifying potential problem issues during those cleaning appointments. They will notice an emerging cavity and invite the Dentist in for an examination, even if you did not previously have an appointment. The hygienist might be the first person your child ever meets at the dental office as you bring them in for their first appointment and often, because they spend a significant amount of time with you, your hygienist might almost be like your therapist!

Let’s also use this month as a reminder that good oral hygiene isn’t just about healthy teeth, mouth and gums but is also a part of your larger health picture. Poor oral health can lead to chronic gum disease, cardiovascular issues, pregnancy complications and more. In other news, some health conditions such as ulcerative colitis, osteoporosis and diabetes can CAUSE oral health issues. In short, this all leads us to emphasize the absolutely crucial importance of the brush floss, rinse and repeat cycle we mentioned at the outset of this blog.

A visit with a dental hygienist will look a little like this:

  • They will meet with you, help to make you comfortable and have all of their “tools of the trade” ready to go as you are seated.
  • The hygienist will use a scaler to safely remove any plaque and/or bacteria build up that has been missed despite your diligent brushing and flossing.
  • This scraping/cleaning is referred to as scaling.
  • They will examine your teeth to identify any potential areas of weakness.
  • They will spend time, if you wish them to, providing helpful information on the proper techniques for brushing and flossing.
  • Your hygienist will also clean your teeth and polish them and you may even elect to receive a fluoride treatment.

The family dental team at Brinkley Dental located in north Brampton has several hygienists on staff ready and waiting to help you and your family members to maintain healthy teeth, mouth and gums. Why not make an appointment during National Dental Hygienist Month and come and say hello! Help us celebrate the importance of good oral health, and our hygienist team at the same time and in the meantime, we will leave you as we always do with this friendly reminder; “don’t forget to be a BFF with your mouth and brush that smile!”

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