Preventative care plays an integral role in the continuing care of our patients. These measures are taken to maintain excellent oral health as well as to allow for early intervention which would minimize the impact of any setbacks should they occur. We feel very strongly about the importance of preventative care and are always happy to discuss the benefits of a proactive regimen.
PREVENTATIVE CARE – ORLEANS DENTISTS
Proactive Oral Hygiene Care
We firmly believe that proactive oral hygiene is an essential component of good and responsible dental care. In simple terms, good oral hygiene leads to good oral health which, in turn, contributes to good general health. Medical research consistently points to the apparent link between poor oral health and certain systemic diseases such as diabetes, respiratory, heart and other ailments.
Our proactive oral hygiene program is twofold: prevention and maintenance. In very general terms, we are talking about the prevention of potential dental problems in the future; in more specific terms, we mean primarily the prevention of cavities and gum disease. Problems in one or both areas can have significant impact on a person’s appearance, health and overall quality of life. With this in mind, your dentists (Dr. Dalios and Dr. Gozar), together with your hygienists, will carefully evaluate the status of your oral health and then recommend an oral hygiene regimen tailored to your specific needs. Most of our patients fall into one of the following categories:
Some people seem to be able to clean and maintain their teeth and gums in excellent shape without much outside (professional) help. If this is the case, we may take on only a supervisory role and recommend a 9 month recall period. This scenario is quite rare, however, and the majority of our patients fall into one of the following two categories.
Individuals with good and stable oral health are generally scheduled for recalls every 6 months. These visits include cleaning by the hygienist and a checkup by the dentist every 12 months.
Patients with mild periodontal involvement should schedule their visits regularly every 3 months. This is because the anaerobic organisms that cause gingivitis (inflammation of the gums) have a gestation period of three months. Home oral hygiene is not enough to address the issue, only professional cleaning of even the hard to reach places can do the job. Once the gums are healthy, patients can start or resume regular visits every six months.
Patients suffering from severe periodontal disease are strongly advised to participate in an intensive periodontal rehabilitation program. This usually entails several initial appointments that are scheduled closely together. The goal of these visits is to halt the progress of the disease, initiate the treatment and supervise the recovery. Patients usually receive special (i.e. above and beyond the routine) oral care instructions and their progress is closely monitored by both the hygienist and the dentist. Once the periodontal disease is successfully eradicated, recalls are scheduled at 3 month intervals.
Soft Tissue Laser
Soft tissue laser is most commonly used as a tool to combat periodontal disease. Replacing conventional curettes, this laser is designed to remove and/or reshape soft tissue with minimal invasiveness. It is a very precise and effective instrument which enables the dental practitioner to focus and localize the surgical procedure without involving the surrounding area. The use of dental laser tends to decrease or, in some cases, even eliminate the use of anesthetics; it decreases bleeding and the need for stitches and lowers the risk of infection. Overall, the soft tissue laser delivers a safer treatment with less pain and discomfort and offers the added benefit of a shorter recovery period.