Table of contents
- What is a periodontist?
- Why have I been referred to a periodontist?
- Can you cure gum/periodontal disease?
- What if I leave my gum disease untreated?
What is a periodontist?
A periodontist is a dentist who specialises in treating gum conditions. Periodontists work by identifying the type of bacterial infection responsible for the problem, prescribing a treatment plan, and providing information on good dental hygiene.
Since gum conditions can range from mild to severe, periodontists create treatment plans that not only manage existing gum conditions but also prevent them from occurring in the future.
Periodontists can carry out non-surgical and surgical treatments. Some of these include scaling, grafting, and gum grafts.
On some occasions, periodontal disease can be treated by a regular dentist or hygienist. However, if your condition has not responded well to past treatment or if it is severe or extensive, you may benefit from a referral to someone who can provide more advanced care.
Here at RW Perio, our wealth of experience allows us to treat even the most advanced cases of gum diseases. To find out more about how we can help you, click here!
Why have I been referred to a periodontist
Your dentist may have referred you to a periodontist if you they are unable to adequately heal your infection. This could be due to a bacterial infection, or any underlying infections that you may have which would make collaboration with a periodontist the most optimal healthcare treatment for you.
These could include any of the following:
- Early onset of periodontal diseases (prior to the age of 35)
- Unresolved inflammation at any site (e.g., bleeding upon probing, pus, and/or redness)
- Pocket depths >5 mm
- Vertical bone defects
- Radiographic evidence of progressive bone loss
- Progressive tooth mobility
- Progressive attachment loss
- Anatomic gingival deformities
- Exposed root surfaces
- A deteriorating risk profile
Can you cure gum/periodontal disease?
You can never really ‘cure’ gum/periodontal disease, but you can treat and stabilize it. Once treated and the gums are healthy, you need to ensure life-long regular maintenance at home and with your hygienist to ensure you minimize any chances of relapse.
Here at RW Perio, we work with you to provide a long-term hygiene and treatment plan that allows you manage your gum disease. To find out more about how to maintain healthy gums, check out our 10-step guide to healthy gums here!
What if I leave my gum disease untreated?
If your gum/periodontal condition is left untreated, this can result in your teeth loosening up and eventual tooth loss. Other associated symptoms may also start to develop including bleeding gums, gum boils, bad breath, bad taste and painful gums/teeth. You may get very little symptoms until it is advanced, so it is important to catch it early, as it’s a preventable and treatable condition.
To check whether you need to see a dentist, check out our recent article here!
Get in touch and start your journey to optimal gum health today!
Should You See a Periodontist?
Not all dentists are born equal. All dentists have a dentistry degree, but if you want to be specialised, another degree in the area you want to be specialised in is required. For example, a periodontist has a degree specialising in periodontology, which involves examining the structures around the teeth, such as the gums and the bone.
A periodontist treats gum diseases non-surgically and surgically. Surgery can also be performed to treat gum recessions, which is when the gums are receding.
The opposite of that is treating gummy smiles by performing what we call a ‘gum lift’ to look nicer, for personal aesthetic reasons. Sometimes, someone’s smile can reveal a lot of gum so that their lip appears quite high. For people that feel they have extra gum that is interfering with their image, we can perform a gum-lift (which you can see before and after images of on our Instagram).
Here are a few things you should know before deciding whether you should visit a periodontist.
What causes bad breath?
How do you know if you have gum disease?
Can gum disease indicate other health problems?
How should you maintain dental healthcare?
When should you see a periodontist?
Do you need to see a specialist clinic?
What causes bad breath?
Bad breath, which is also known as halitosis, is a result of the bad odours produced by bacteria trapped by the surface of your tongue or within your gum pockets. Bad breath can be embarrassing or even cause anxiety.
There are two causes of bad breath. One cause is tongue coating, which is why tongue cleaning is so important. The other cause of bad breath is gum disease. Even more so, in light of the pandemic, since everyone has their masks on.
How do you know if you have gum disease?
Gum disease is not always visually apparent. Red gums can be a sign of gum disease, but some people’s gums can look completely normal whilst suffering from severe gum disease.
Other telltale signs of gum disease include:
- Bleeding gums
- Loose teeth
- Swelling of the gums
- Poor bone support
Loose teeth are a really important indicator of gum disease. On top of that, swelling of gums and poor bone support may cause the position of teeth to drift and change, and gaps may start opening up between the teeth. Patients don’t always feel pain, but that can also be a sign.
Most people start noticing they might have something wrong when their smile begins to look different.
Can gum disease indicate other health problems?
A recent hot topic is looking into the link between gum disease and general health. Your gums can affect your risk of getting heart disease or otherwise be an indication of diabetes. Your body is intricate and interconnected, so it is not surprising that these links exist as your mouth is connected to your body.
How should you maintain dental care?
More and more young children, as well as young adults in their early twenties, are succumbing to gum disease. This is quite worrying.
As soon as your first teeth come through good dental care is extremely important. Some might think that dummies may be a concern. Dummies for children can affect the growth of teeth but only once the teeth start developing. It does not have a significant effect on the gums.
Instead, there should be more education on how to brush your teeth as people are not completely aware of how they should really be doing it. It is not as easy as some might think. Though, there are some quite simple things you should know, such as using a toothpaste that contains fluoride and ensuring you are brushing well and thoroughly.
Once the baby teeth fall out, flossing is a habit that is important to maintain as soon as your adult teeth start to come in. It is important to floss as soon as possible. The best tool for flossing for adults is interdental brushes. These are brushes that are designed to be used in between your teeth. It is more effective than flossing so it is the method that we promote to our patients, especially those with gum disease.
Whilst some might believe that adding toothpaste to your interdental brush would prove more effective it is not necessary. You can use it plain, then wash it each time you use it. However, it is important to replace the brushes every few days.
If you have healthy gums, then you should have your teeth for life. The common stereotype is that you lose your teeth when you age. However, we have a lot of patients who are in their 80s who still have healthy teeth, and the current generation also have expectations to keep their teeth for life.
Getting into good habits from an early age is critical for reaping the long-term benefits. Gum disease is preventable, therefore it makes sense that maintaining good habits serves as a preventative measure to actually getting gum disease.
When should you see a periodontist?
Whether you should see a periodontist depends on the level of risk. Gum disease patients normally need to see a good hygienist every three months. Whilst gum disease is preventable, it is not something that can really be cured but instead stabilised.
Regardless of whether you need care every three months or six months, it is advisable that everyone refers to professionals for their hygiene and cleaning from the very beginning and consistently if they want to maintain their dental care.
Do you need to see a specialist clinic?
If a patient does not think they have gum disease but wants to refer to a good hygienist under a specialist clinic, they can book a hygienist directly. The treatment that follows is called Polish and Perfect.
This treatment has three tiers.
The investment for this treatment is £250. The patient receives an assessment and tailored oral hygiene instructions. They also receive a full mouth cleanse using airflow, which removes any stains that a normal hygienist scale and polish wouldn’t do.
Polish and Perfect Maintenance
The investment for this is £200, which is more cost-effective after the patient has already been to our practice once for their initial assessment. They can continue with the maintenance of their dental care.
Polish and Perfect Whitening
This is a tier we have recently introduced. This is for people who now have healthy teeth and gums but can moreover invest in the appearance of their smile. The whitening package is £595.
Make sure to read our other blogs for more information.
Have you had a check-up recently?
In London, 55.7% of people have not seen a dentist in the last 24 months. The highest figure in the country. Skipping those crucial dental check-ups during the pandemic has had a huge knock-on effect on us all – one that can lead to more than just a toothache. Let’s delve into gum disease…
What is Gum Disease?
Gum disease, also known as gingivitis or periodontitis, is a common condition where the gums become swollen, sore, or infected.
If you are suffering from Gingivitis, your gums may appear red, swollen and will bleed, particularly during brushing or flossing. This is due to inflammation along the gumline. The individual may also experience a bad taste or persistent mouth odour for a prolonged period of time. Frequent white spots or large amounts of plaque on the gums are also a tell-tale sign of gum disease.
How Does It Occur?
There are multiple stages to Gum Disease. In simple terms, it is an infection of the tissues that hold your teeth in place. This is typically a result of poor or a lack of brushing of the teeth and a lack of interdental cleaning/flossing that creates plaque build-up on your teeth that harden.
Gingivitis: This is the reversible stage of Gum Disease where the swelling and redness begins. Only the gums are involved
Periodontitis: This derives from the word periodontal, which means “around the tooth” and refers to the structures that surround and support teeth. The second stage involves the bone around the tooth. You lose bone and pockets open up between your gum and tooth.
Other complications include a bad taste, mobile teeth and receding gums.
Who Does It Affect?
Gum disease has the potential to affect anyone, of all ages.
Several risk factors that can increase the chances of periodontal diseases include smoking, poor oral hygiene, diabetes, medication, age, hereditary links, and stress.
According to BUPA, it has been concluded that over 90% of adults in the UK have some form of gum disease, even if only a small amount.
What Do Healthy Gums Look Like?
Healthy gums will appear pink and firm. They will not bleed when you brush or floss, nor will they feel sensitive or swollen when brushing, flossing or eating certain foods.
Natural Ways to Prevent Gum Disease
The good news is – it can be prevented!
- – Brush your teeth twice a day and ensure to clean between your teeth too.
- – Consider using an electric toothbrush to maximise your cleaning.
- – Clean between your teeth using interdental brushes or floss daily.
- – Aim to visit your dentist regularly for a check-up and any maintenance as needed.
What are the benefits of treating periodontal disease?
It starts with Gum Disease, but it can lead to a lot worse if you don’t follow up with proper, effective treatment. Gum Disease has proven to be linked to dangerous health problems in other parts of your body and can increase your risk of
If treated correctly, the corresponding reductions in hospital admissions are:
- 39% in diabetes patients
- 29% in heart disease patients
- 21% in stroke patients
What Treatments Do We Offer?
Here is a list of the relevant consultations and treatments that we offer to help you fight Gum Disease:
The first appointment will always be a periodontal consultation. This will involve a comprehensive discussion to ensure we are aware of your personal concerns and aims of treatment. This will be followed by a detailed periodontal examination which involves measuring the position of the gums and determining whether or not spaces (pockets) have opened up between the gums and the teeth.
Non-Surgical Periodontal Therapy
If you have been diagnosed with periodontitis, then treatment will usually begin with non-surgical periodontal therapy. Treatment will only work with good home care and so an important part of this treatment is us giving you tailored oral hygiene instructions. The bacteria and ‘build-up’ under the gum line and within the pocket are then removed through a technique called root surface debridement. This is usually carried out under local anaesthetic to ensure you are comfortable throughout the process. The aims of this treatment are to reduce the depth of the pockets and increase the ability to maintain good oral hygiene in the area.
Pocket Reduction Surgery
If the pockets are not reduced with non-surgical periodontal therapy then surgery may be suggested. This will involve reshaping the gums and bone. Sometimes, bone regenerative materials (synthetic/human/animal derived) may be placed around the teeth.
Several methods are available to treat gum recession and to reverse it in most cases. At RW Perio, we perform gum grafts, which require pulling the gum down over the receded area and/or taking a small piece of tissue from the roof of your mouth. The graft will improve not only the appearance of the gums but also the thickness.
How Can I Make My Gums Healthy Again?
Creating a routine for oral hygiene that you can follow every morning and night is the first step. In order to keep your gums healthy, consistency is key. Follow the steps above to maintain healthy gums, stick to your routine religiously and try to cut down on sugary foods and drink as much as possible.
We want you to feel confidence in your smile.
Want to take the next step with us?
RW Perio is a specialist private practice dedicated to the treatment of periodontal (gum) diseases, in a comfortable and caring environment. As a leading periodontist in London, our aim is to assist every patient to achieve and maintain optimal gum health.
If you have any concerns about your oral health, you can book an appointment with us or give us a call at our specialist clinic located on 75 Harley Street.
Get in touch with us today or Try Our Online Gum Health Check now!
Ready to read more? Take a look at our other blogs if you are interested in learning further about dental care.
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The number one reason why people lose their teeth is not because of cavities but because of gum or periodontal disease. By reading this, you are already aware of how important your gums are, so let us help you achieve your smile goals.
When you don’t brush, floss or clean your teeth well enough, all the bacteria hang out along your gum line and creep below the edges. Within a week of poor home care and bad brushing and flossing, you will start to see swelling and redness on your gum. Our London Gum Specialist can help and assist you.
Truth is, we all have bacteria in our mouth but some people have bacteria that can be very aggressive and this bacterium is not controlled by regular brushing and flossing as it migrates down to the gum tissue. When the immune system tries to remove this bacterium, sometimes bones can be lost from around the teeth as well. When this happens, you may have to be referred to a gum specialist. Our gum specialists at RW Perio focus on the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of periodontal diseases and are committed to ensuring that you are comfortable throughout your treatment.
It is recommended that you visit your dentist every six months for regular checkups and routine teeth cleaning. If it has been six months since your last dental checkup, it’s time to visit your gum specialist or dentist. Understand that we are committed to providing you and your household with safe and high-quality dental care.
You may need to meet with your dentist and discuss your individual treatment plan, and help you answer any questions that you may have. You do not need to feel anxious about seeing a gum specialist. It is your gum specialist’s goal to make you feel comfortable visiting the clinic while providing the best care possible. Appointments at the clinic may last between 45 to 90 minutes.
Depending on how severe your gum or periodontal disease is, you will need some kind of therapy. For instance, you may need to do a deep cleaning. Deep cleaning is done in two visits, focusing on one side of the mouth at a time. If you have been diagnosed with gum disease, there are a number of methods to help you get the cure for the problem. Invasive options which are normally non-surgical can help clean your teeth and strengthen your gum.
One of those options includes scaling and root planning which involves the use of an ultrasound cleaning device. This device is used to remove plaque from your teeth and in areas such as the gum line and the root of the tooth. To get a healthy clean surface, the rough surface of the tooth and its root are planed or smoothed out. Scaling and root planning may be the only treatment you need if you address your gum diseases before they become severe. After a successful process, be sure to properly clean your teeth to avoid developing gum diseases again and again.
After getting gum treatment you will visit the gum specialist again after 4-6 weeks and they will reevaluate your gum maybe when you’re clean you can do a six-month visit to the clinic.
Periodontal maintenance cleaning
If your periodontal disease is very severe and to avoid extractions, your dentist or gum specialist might be able to add to the supportive tissues around your tooth by placing a graft or using a laser for periodontal regeneration. These are normally used for people with very aggressive periodontal disease.
Surgical treatment options are available to prevent severe damage and restore a healthy smile. Your teeth are firmly surrounded by gum tissues that are damaged by periodontal diseases and flap surgery may help. During the process, the gum tissue is folded back and bacteria hiding underneath is removed. Tissues that are too damaged to survive are then removed as the healthy tissue is sewn back into place. Bone and tissues supporting the teeth which have been lost due to severe gum disease can also be restored through a regeneration procedure. Otherwise, performing a bone graft to help renew bone growth can be an option.
As gums recede, more of the roots are revealed which can make the teeth appear longer and can also create teeth sensitivity to hot and cold liquids. Another procedure that can be used to help solve this aspect of periodontal disease is the soft-tissue graft, although it can also be performed for cosmetic reasons. This procedure involves covering the roots and restoring the gum line to its original healthy location.
After your deep cleaning is completed, you want to see your dentist for maintenance cleaning for about 3-4 months to prevent a relapse of symptoms.
Clean your teeth as often as you can while listening to the exact homecare instructions your gum specialist recommended for you and what they felt is best for your individual routine. Commit to brushing at least two times a day. It is not a one-size-fits-all and everyone will differ in the type of home care.
In order to prevent the build-up of plaque and cavities, use a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste to remove food particles and plaque from the tooth surfaces. Be sure to brush the top surface of your tongue as this will remove extra food particles while helping you keep a fresh breath.
In order to proudly achieve beautiful smiles and beautiful natural smiles and the benefits that come with them, your gum specialist will take you through maintenance treatments for optimal dental health. Some forms of medication may include, tray whitening teeth whitening strips and paint-on teeth whitening. Professional tray whitening usually takes ten to fourteen days to show results although you may notice results within three to five days. The least expensive options are toothpaste and mouth wash which are designed to have whitening capabilities as they are designed to remove surface stains using mild abrasives. Use of medication such as antibiotics or mouthwash may be prescribed for treatment along with other forms of treatment. Cosmetic dentistry is different from the general dental care that your gum specialist may offer.
Many are anxious when it comes to contacting a gum specialist who can provide the care and support needed for a healthy smile. If you would want to schedule an appointment for your teeth whitening and gum disease treatment, contact a gum specialist or a dentist from our clinic. Using our online booking system will be an added advantage to getting a quicker response from our professional gum specialist.
Learn whether gum recession is reversible by experts at RW Perio
Gum Recession: Causes and Reversibility
Gum recession is a common dental issue that occurs when the gum tissue surrounding the teeth begins to pull back; exposing more of the tooth’s root. This can lead to sensitivity, tooth decay, and even tooth loss if left untreated. Read further to learn about the causes of gum recession. We’ll discuss the periodontal methods of treatment that can help to reverse this condition.
Causes of Gum Recession
Several factors can contribute to gum recession. The most common causes include:
Brushing too hard
Aggressive brushing can cause the gums to recede, as the bristles can irritate and damage the gum tissue.
Also known as gum disease, this bacterial infection can cause the gums to pull away from the teeth, leading to recession.
Some people may be more prone to gum recession due to genetic factors.
Misaligned teeth can place extra stress on the gums, causing them to recede.
Hormonal changes in the body, such as pregnancy, can cause the gums to become more sensitive and prone to recession.
Smoking or using other forms of tobacco can increase the risk of receding gums.
Periodontal Methods of Treatment
If you are experiencing gum recession, it is important to seek treatment from a periodontist – a dentist who specialises in the treatment of the gums and bones that support the teeth. There are several periodontal methods that can be used to help reverse this and prevent further damage.
Non-Surgical Treatment: This is a non-surgical procedure that involves removing plaque and tartar from the teeth and smoothing out the roots to help prevent bacteria from re-establishing themselves.
Gum Grafting: In this procedure, a small amount of gum tissue is taken from the roof of the mouth and used to cover the exposed roots of the teeth. This can help to protect the roots from decay and sensitivity.
Bone Grafting: In cases where the bone has been lost due to periodontal disease, bone grafting can be used to rebuild the bone and provide a foundation for the gums to reattach to the teeth.
Surgery: In some cases, surgery may be necessary to repair the damage caused. The type of surgery will depend on the severity of the recession and the overall health of the patient.
Aggressive brushing, periodontal disease, genetics, and tobacco use can cause gum recession, a common dental issue. A periodontist and proper treatment can reverse this condition and prevent further damage to the teeth and gums.
If you are experiencing symptoms of this condition, it is important to seek treatment as soon as possible to prevent the condition from worsening.
Follow us on Instagram to see all our before and after posts regarding receding gum treatments!
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Bleeding gums are often an indication of gum disease, which can cause severe problems if left untreated.
It’s important to understand what your bleeding gums may be trying to tell you about your oral health and how to take steps to maintain healthy gums and teeth.
What is Gum Disease?
Gum disease is a common condition that affects the soft tissues of the mouth, including the gums, tongue, and cheeks. It is caused by bacteria in plaque, which is a sticky film that forms on teeth. When plaque is not removed, it hardens into tartar, which can lead to inflammation and infection in the gums.
There are two stages of gum disease:
This is the early stage of gum disease, characterised by red, swollen, and bleeding gums. At this stage, the damage can be reversed with proper oral hygiene and regular visits to the dentist.
If gingivitis is left untreated, it can progress to periodontitis. This is a more advanced stage of gum disease, where the infection has spread to the supporting tissues and bones around the teeth. In severe cases, periodontitis can lead to tooth loss.
What Causes Gum Disease?
The most common cause of gum disease is poor oral hygiene. When plaque is not removed, it can harden into tartar, which cannot be removed by brushing and flossing alone.
Other factors that can contribute to gum disease include:
- Smoking or using other tobacco products
- Hormonal changes, such as those during pregnancy or menopause
- Certain medications, such as anti-depressants and anti-epileptics
- Chronic diseases, such as diabetes and heart disease
What are the Symptoms of Gum Disease?
The symptoms of gum disease can vary depending on the stage of the condition.
In the early stages, symptoms may include:
- Red, swollen, or bleeding gums
- Bad breath
- Receding gums
- Tooth Sensitivity
- In more advanced stages, symptoms may include:
- Loose teeth
- Changes in the bite or the way teeth fit together
- Pus or discharge from the gums
- Painful chewing
- If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s important to visit a periodontist or dentist as soon as possible.
Why is Gum Health Important?
Maintaining healthy gums is important not just for your oral health, but also for your overall health. Studies have shown that there is a link between gum disease and other health conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.
In addition to reducing your risk of other health problems, maintaining healthy gums can also help you avoid more costly and invasive dental procedures down the road.
How to Maintain Healthy Gums
Maintaining healthy gums starts with proper oral hygiene. This includes brushing your teeth at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, flossing at least once daily, and using an antiseptic mouthwash.
In addition to these basic habits, there are a few other things you can do to promote gum health:
- Quit smoking or using tobacco products
- Limit your consumption of sugary and acidic foods and drinks
- Visit a periodontist or dentist for regular check-ups and cleanings
- Consider using an electric toothbrush, which can be more effective at removing plaque than a manual toothbrush
Apply Routine Check
Bleeding gums may be a sign of gum disease, which can lead to serious oral health problems if left untreated. By understanding the symptoms of gum disease, its causes, and how to maintain healthy gums, you can take steps to protect your oral and overall health. Remember to visit your specialist periodontist here at RW Perio or dentist regularly for check-ups and cleanings, and to practice daily dental hygiene at home.
Tongue scraping provides plenty of health benefits that make it an understated but crucial addition to your everyday oral hygiene routine.
Your tongue is like a sponge where bad bacteria, debris, and food particles can get trapped, leading to unpleasant consequences if left unattended. This can result in unwanted debris build-up, which can lead to bad breath (halitosis), plaque build-up, and even tooth decay.
However, is it worth investing in a tongue scraper? According to evidence-based research – yes! Read on to learn more about the benefits of tongue scraping, and why you should be using a tongue scraper!
What is a tongue scraper?
Your tongue has an irregular surface full of cracks and crevices where extra particles can get trapped. Like a carpet, your tongue needs to get cleaned regularly.
This is where the tongue scraper comes in.
A tongue scraper is a simple tool usually made from plastic or metal that is dragged along your tongue. This removes the build-up of extra particles from the surface of your tongue.
What are the benefits of tongue scraping?
A build-up of excess particles, debris, and bacteria on your tongue over time can be detrimental to your oral hygiene. Tongue scraping maintains the balance of bacteria in your mouth by removing any excess bacteria, in addition to leftover food particles and debris.
Other benefits include:
- Reduce bad breath (halitosis). Bad breath is due to bacteria trapped by the surface of the tongue. This bacteria produces sulphur compounds which are responsible for the bad odours. Tongue scraping significantly reduces the presence of this bacteria compared to toothbrushing alone.
- Remove excess bacteria and debris. Besides removing odour-producing bacteria, tongue scraping also reduces the presence of Strep. Mutans which is known to cause tooth decay. Moreover, preventing the build-up of excess particles and debris is a preventative measure from developing cavities, gum disease, and other such dental conditions.
- Reduces plaque. Tongue scraping regularly is effective in reducing plaque.
- Keeps your taste buds healthy. Excess debris can obstruct your taste bud’s ability to distinguish between bitter, sweet, salty and sour sensations. Using a tongue scraper consistently to remove debris has been proven to improve your sense of taste.
- Boosts your immunity. Tongue scraping prevents toxins from being reabsorbed into the body and overall boosts your immune system.
- Instantly improve the appearance of the tongue. A build-up of debris can cause a white coating to form on your tongue. Tongue scraping can remove this coating and restore your tongue to its normal colour.
How effective is a tongue scraper?
Tongue scraping is effective when performed on a consistent daily basis. If you want to see results you must scrape your tongue regularly. But why use a tongue scraper? Why not a toothbrush?
Whilst your oral hygiene will improve overall if you add tongue-cleaning to your routine, using a tongue scraper is especially effective for tongue-cleaning.
A tongue scraper is structured to fit the natural shape of your tongue. RW Perio have created their bespoke tongue scraper made of metal rather than plastic, ensuring it will last forever and is eco-friendly. Our tongue scraper is specifically fit for your tongue and therefore its design maximises its effectiveness against excess bacteria, debris, and particle build-up. Research has shown that a tongue scraper can reduce 30% more sulphur-producing bacteria than a toothbrush.
How do you use a tongue scraper?
Daily tongue-scraping is not a lengthy process and should take less than two minutes to perform.
Follow these steps to carry out a tongue-scraping:
- Open your mouth and stick out your tongue. Avoid pointing your tongue as this decreases the surface area.
- Hold your tongue scraper and place it at the back of your tongue. Do it at a comfortable distance, not so far back that you trigger your gag reflex.
- Apply firm pressure to the tongue scraper and in one slow smooth motion slide it down to the front of your tongue.
- Rinse the tongue scraper of any residue it has picked up.
- Repeat steps 2-4 for a maximum of four to eight times.
- When you’re done, rinse your mouth with water or preferably mouthwash.
Some other things you should keep in mind:
- Clean your tongue scraper before and after you use it
- Periodically disinfect your tongue scraper in boiling water
- Ideally replace your tongue scraper every 3-4 months, or whenever you replace your toothbrush
- If your gag reflex is too sensitive during a tongue scraping, avoid doing it after you’ve eaten
Is tongue scraping safe?
Whilst tongue-scraping has many health benefits, it is not a replacement for brushing your teeth. You should be using a tongue scraper as a beneficial addition to ensure optimum levels of oral health. You should be brushing your teeth and cleaning your tongue twice a day and rinsing your mouth with mouthwash afterwards. Flossing is equally important and should be done once a day.
The best time to use a tongue scraper is after you brush your teeth as the last step in your home care regime.
Moreover, whilst you should be firm when using a tongue-scraper, avoid pushing it too hard or roughly on your tongue. The tongue is a resilient organ, but tongue-scraping too harshly or too often can damage your taste buds and even cause bleeding. Be gentle, but firm. Be consistent, but not overly frequent.
Buying a tongue scraper
Stainless steel, copper, and plastic are the most common materials tongue scrapers are made of. There are many plastic versions on the market. However, this is a tool that you should be using daily and so requires a resilient structure.
At RW Perio we have designed the eco-friendly tongue scraper available for purchase at our online shop.
If you have any concerns about your oral health, you can book an appointment with us or give us a call at our specialist clinic located on 75 Harley Street. Ready to read more? Take a look at our other blogs if you are interested in learning further about dental care.
We often get asked a lot of questions when it comes to what we do, how we operate and more, so we wanted to create this short article with answers to some of our most common questions.
What is RW Perio?
RW Perio is a specialist periodontal clinic founded by Dr Reena Wadia. We provide specialist treatment for periodontitis, gum recession and crown lengthening.
How can you refer?
The easiest way to refer is via the website. Just need to go here.
The process is fast, simple and effective. You can also email us on [email protected] or call 020 7112 9036.
What is the average waiting time for appointments?
This can vary, but it’s usually two weeks. However, if your patient does require an urgent appointment, we can aim to make special provision.
How will you keep me updated?
We work around you. Usually for most referrers, this is via email however we can work how you prefer. We’ll keep you up to date at every point – when we receive the referral, when the patient books in and all the clinical stages thereafter.
How long do patients usually remain with you?
Once a treatment is complete, depending on the situation, we usually keep them on here for a year for maintenance. But after that, we’ll discharge them back to your care for long term maintenance, or if you prefer, we can also look after them here.
What should my patient expect during the First appointment?
The first appointment is the specialist consultation and usually takes up to 60 minutes and we discuss the patient’s main concerns. We complete a detailed assessment, take radiographs, and then also go through the proposed treatment plan. Appointments are booked in on the day and the patient will receive a clinical report by the end of the day.
Can I attend with my patient?
Yes, you can attend with your patient. Just let us know and we can make special provision.
Will Dr. Reena see my patients personally?
Yes, Dr. Reena will be involved throughout the treatment plan and her team work directly under her specialist prescription. Our team of specialists and hygienists all work together to provide the best care for your patient.
Do you offer finance plans?
Yes, subject to approval from our third-party finance provider we offer finance plans to all patients and payments can be split over 3, 6 or 10 months. The finance plan is interest-free. To give you an example for a severe generalised periodontitis case, you’re looking at around £200 a month, over 10 months.
If you have more questions or would like to refer, please get in touch with the team who will be happy to help.
Our gum specialists at RW Perio focus on the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of periodontal diseases and are committed to ensuring that you are comfortable throughout your treatment.
If you have been diagnosed with periodontitis, then treatment will usually begin with non-surgical periodontal treatment. This usually involves debridement into the gum pockets and carefully cleaning the root surfaces to remove bacterial toxins.
This is followed by oral therapy to help control microbial periodontal infections. The aim of non-surgical periodontal treatment is to reduce the depth of the pockets and increase the ability to maintain good oral hygiene. Treatment will only work with good home care, so an important part of this treatment is for RW Perio to give you tailored oral hygiene instructions.
What It Involves
Non-surgical Periodontal treatment is usually the initial phase of treatment recommended for patients diagnosed with periodontitis or periodontal disease. This treatment aims to reduce the depth of the pockets and increase the ability to maintain good oral hygiene in this area. The first and most important element of this phase is optimal home care. For long-term stability, an optimal oral hygiene regime is usually recommended.
Our company spends a significant amount of time providing you with tailored oral hygiene instructions, to ensure you are comfortable performing this regime yourself. We’ll monitor your compliance throughout the treatment and also put you on reassessment. Advice will be given if there are other concerns related to your gum health such as bad breath.
Through root surface debridement, the build-up under the gum line and the bacteria within the pockets are removed and disinfected. To ensure you are comfortable, this is usually carried out under local anaesthetic, using The Wand system. You may be required to come in for several treatment appointments if you have generalised pockets. By this, each quarter or half of the month will be the best time for appointments.
Periodontal therapy improves your ability to perform effective home care and oral hygiene. This allows for long-term maintenance of the results. The procedure removes any staining you may have. There is a reduction and/or elimination of bleeding gums. Reduces and/or eliminates bad breadth. There’s a reduction in the depth/closure of the periodontal pockets. Mobility of any loose teeth is reduced to a minimum.
The lifespan of the teeth is greatly increased. If there’s pain following the procedure (which is to be expected), it can be managed with over-the-counter painkillers. This usually lasts for a few days. You should expect a temporary increase in bleeding from the gums. There’s increased sensitivity, especially to cold. It’s usually short-lasting and can be managed with toothpaste designed to reduce sensitivity.
Your teeth may look slightly longer and the spaces between them may become larger than usual. This is a result of the gums receding as they heal. With innovative techniques, RW Perio has made great strides in the non-surgical treatment of periodontal problems.
With the following techniques, we perform the best non-surgical periodontal treatment on our clients in a simple and affordable way.
The fundamental non-surgical periodontal treatment for gum diseases is the method of debridement. This helps to clean the surface and below the gum lines of the affected area. To effectively allow the gums and surrounding bones to heal properly, the best approach is specialist debridement. Local anaesthetics are used to effectively numb the area for greater comfort while cleaning the surface. Scaling involves removing the tartar or hardened plaque above and below the gum line. The specialist usually schedules for the patient to visit after 8 weeks, and if the procedure improves gum disease, periodic maintenance can be scheduled to take place within 3-4 months after the first treatment. Moreover, the majority of patients are required to undergo maintenance therapy to sustain periodontal health.
To help treat periodontal disease for some patients, systemic antibiotics may be prescribed. This is usually taken orally as medication and normally used to help treat periodontal disease but only when combined with conventional non-surgical therapy. Your dentist will help to determine if this treatment approach will help alleviate your condition.
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