Dentistry has come a long way in the last few decades. There was a time when the ideal 21st birthday present was to have all your teeth removed and replaced with dentures. Teeth were not for life, but false ones were.
Things have changed so much since then that for the first time ever it is possible to hang on to all your teeth until you die, by taking good care of them with preventative dentistry.
At Crofts Dental Practice in Essex, our aim is to have all our patients hang on to their natural teeth for as long as possible. And the best way to do this is make them easy to keep clean, and then to keep them free from plaque.
Plaque is the big issue when it comes to teeth. This sticky film that seems to appear from nowhere on our teeth is millions of harmless bacteria. They colonise the surface of our teeth, getting into nooks and crannies and around the gum line, even under it. The bacteria may be harmless, but the plaque builds up and as it becomes thicker, the bacteria nearest the teeth and gums feed on sugars in the mouth, and release acids. It’s these acids that cause the damage, eroding the enamel and getting into the dentine to cause decay and possibly infection. They also irritate the gums to cause gum disease, which can attack the bone under the gum and eventually cause teeth to fall out.
Preventative dentistry: benefits for children and adults
The check-up plays a vital role in preventing decay and disease. By coming to us every six months for a check-up and scale and polish, you let us spot the signs of issues that you won’t become aware of until they start hurting, and by then, they are already quite advanced. If we can spot early signs of decay or disease, it means the difference possibly between a tiny filling and a crown, or maybe an abscess and root canal treatment. With children, we can prevent filling with fluoride treatments and sealing fissure on the back teeth.