Dental hygienists often use tools such as handheld and ultrasonic scrapers to clear plaque and tartar buildup off of teeth, according to The Nest. They also use polishers to clean the teeth and X-rays to obtain images of tooth alignment, jaw health and to detect the presence of cavities.Continue Reading
Routine dental cleanings are generally painless, but some patients experience considerable anxiety during dentist appointments and are especially susceptible to pain, notes The Nest. In these cases, a dental hygienist may need to use a needle to inject a local anaesthetic into a patient's gums and lips to numb the individual's mouth. This is also necessary for patients who require an in-depth cleaning, which can create more pain than usual.
The most common types of scalers are hand-held and come in two different shapes to serve distinct purposes, according to Cheryl Hosmer from the Chron. One is pointed on both ends to scrape tartar off exposed teeth, and the second scaler is designed with blunt ends so it can reach below the gum line without causing pain. Ultrasonic scalers rely on multiple sound waves that vibrate in rapid succession to create oscillations that remove plaque and tarter from the teeth. They are not safe to use on patients who are infected with human immunodeficiency virus or hepatitis, because they can shake bodily fluids out of the mouth and pose a threat to dental staff.Learn more about Dental
Gum disease refers to inflammation of the soft tissues that surround the teeth as a result of the accumulation of plaque on the gum line. The plague forms from a mix of saliva, food particles and bacteria. The other name for gum disease is gingivitis.Full Answer >
To avoid common gum problems such as gingivitis and periodontitis dentists recommend brushing with fluoride toothpaste twice daily, using an interdental cleaning tool such as floss to clean the middle areas of the teeth and gargling with an antiseptic mouth rinse twice per day, states WebMD. It is also essential to visit a dentist for regular check ups.Full Answer >
Most dentists identify the different teeth using the Universal Numbering System, which assigns a number to each tooth in the mouth. Some orthodontists and oral surgeons instead use the Palmer Notation Method, which divides the mouth into four quadrants and assigns a number to each tooth in a quadrant.Full Answer >
Infections caused by faulty dental equipment, needless extraction of teeth and the misdiagnosis of a dental condition are some common claims against dentists in malpractice cases. Dental malpractice is when injury to a patient results from a dentist failing to provide the appropriate medical standard of care, according to NoLo.Full Answer >