Author: Ante Žuvela, dr.med.dent.
How to maintain oral hygiene?
Oral hygiene is the most important defensive factor in the development of most oral diseases. With proper oral hygiene, proper use of oral hygiene products and regular dental visits, almost all oral diseases can be prevented.
The basic means of maintaining oral hygiene are a toothbrush and toothpaste. Today there are a large range of toothbrushes and toothpastes on the market, although the choice of toothpaste is not as important as it is the choice of a toothbrush. In today's market there are soft brushes, medium hard, hard, electric, ultrasonic. Patients are often in doubt when it comes to which brush to choose, and very often they choose the hardest ones thinking they will clean their teeth better and remove tartar more completely. However, with such a choice of brush and very often an incorrect brushing technique, they often do more damage to the teeth and gums than good. Today's recommendations are soft brushes marked super or ultrasoft.
In any case, toothbrushes and toothpaste only remove 70% of plaque in the mouth. Therefore, in addition to the basic means of maintaining oral hygiene, we also use additional ones such as dental floss, interdental brushes, mouthwashes and water flossers.
Recommendations for oral hygiene are: brush your teeth twice a day, wait 30 minutes after a meal to brush your teeth and visit your dentist at least twice a year.
Your dentist should explain the proper brushing techniques and use of additional oral hygiene products to you.
Failure to follow these basic guidelines leads to creation of plaque and calculus as well as to the development of gingivitis, periodontitis, periimplantitis, caries, pulpitis, pulp necrosis, granulomas and abscesses.
Oral hygiene is important for all people of all ages. And although these listed diseases are found in all age groups, in adults and the elderly who have prosthetic and implant works, the accumulation of plaque and calculus is especially dangerous if oral hygiene is not maintained. For adults who have bridges and implants, it is very important to use interdental brushes, dental floss, water flosser and mouthwash along with their brush and toothpaste. Residues of food and plaque that cannot be reached with a brush may remain under the bridges and around the implants. Should no additional means be used and frequent visits to a dentist not be carried out, one of the first symptoms that the patient will notice is bleeding and swelling of the gums.
With proper hygiene and the establishment of a clean mouth without plaque and tartar, these symptoms disappear in a short time. However, if tartar and plaque are left in the mouth, periodontitis and periimplantitis, severe inflammation and bone resorption around the root of the tooth or implant occur. Sometimes patients come for a check-up when it is too late and then teeth or implants will need to be extracted.
With proper oral hygiene and regular visits to the dentist, all these diseases can be prevented.