The mouth is the gateway to our inner body and therefore it must be properly taken care of so that we do not infiltrate it with unwanted materials from the mouth which could lead to disease.
TAKING PROPER CARE OF THE MOUTH
- Ideally we should brush our teeth after every meal but those of us who are not in a position to do that should brush at least twice a day. In the morning after breakfast and at night before going to bed. The use of dental floss is also necessary.
- EATING BETWEEN MEALS
- We should avoid eating between meals. This offers the multitude of bacteria in our mouths the right medium to operate since we are not in a position to brush our teeth on these occasions.
- REGULAR VISITS TO THE DENTIST
- Check up is key in dental care. This ensures that dental diseases are avoided.
WHAT DO WE USE IN TAKING CARE OF THE MOUTH
We could use the local chewing sponge, the chewing stick or the toothbrush in combination with a fluoride toothpaste. We need to consult the dentist as to what type of toothbrush to use and also how to apply the brush. This is very important because the wrong use of the brush could be destructive to the gums as well as the teeth. The dental floss is also very useful.
WHAT HAPPENS IF WE DO NOT TAKE PROPER CARE OF THE MOUTH
Plaque, a soft yellowish material laden with a multitude of bacteria builds up on the surfaces of the teeth. This could then become hardened through precipitations from the saliva to form the yellowish or greenish hard substances we see around our teeth. These are called “calculus” or scales as some of us choose to call them.
The bacteria laden plaque on the crevices of the teeth dissolves the tooth material with their acidic waste products which then results in what we call “cavities” or holes in the teeth. This we call “caries” or tooth decay. The bacteria now enters the tooth and make their way to the nerve canal. They then cause the nerve to degenerate and they can migrate right down to the tip of the root. This results in the various types of pain most of us are aware of.
The hardened plaque or calculus around the teeth laden with bacteria also through their acidic waste products destroys the supporting structures of the teeth. They virtually eat up the socket in which the tooth is anchored and the roots become exposed. The tooth starts to shake and has to be removed.
The “ calculus “ also causes the gums to become swollen and reddened which is also associated with pain.
Plaque, calculus, swollen gums and decayed teeth leads to foul smelling of the mouth which we choose to call mouth odour.
Early loss of teeth in children could result in mal positioning of the teeth which could then require orthodontic treatment ( braces ).
WHAT COULD BE DONE WHEN THESE SITUATIONS OCCUR
In the case of caries (tooth decay), various types of fillings could be done to arrest the situation. If a substantial part of the tooth material is lost the tooth could be crowned.
In the case of nerve involvement a root canal treatment could be carried out and the tooth crowned.
If it is too late the tooth is removed (extracted).
In case of swollen gums, gum treatment could be carried out.
When teeth are lost through what has been described above, replacement with removable and irremovable dentures could be done.
Where there is mal positioning of the teeth braces could be used to correct the anomaly.
PROPER DENTAL CARE THEREFORE INCLUDES THE FOLLOWING :
- Brushing of the teeth at least twice a day using the appropriate brush, paste and brushing technique. Also the use of the dental floss.
- Avoid eating between meals
- Regular visits to the dentist.
Adults : twice a year.
Children below 16 years of age : every 3 months.
- Professional cleaning of the teeth (scaling and polishing).
At least twice a year.
The Holy Trinity SPA and Health Farm offers the following dental services :
- Examination and counseling.
- Scaling and Polishing
- Gum treatment
- Removable dentures
- Crowns and Bridges
- Orthodontic treatment
- Routine Surgical