9-Questions You Need To Ask Your Dental Hygienist

By:Elena Chistokhina, RDH

Don’t be shy! Before your hygiene appointment begins, is the perfect time to share all your questions and concerns about your oral health. Your hygienist is highly trained treasure trove of information, committed to helping you maintain and improve your dental health. They’re waiting to share everything they know with you. Certain questions might feel embarrassing, but have no fear, your hygienist has heard it all.

Here are some of the most common and important questions to ask:

1. Why are my gums bleeding?

Are you worried about how much your gums bleed when you brush and floss? It’s normal to experience some bleeding during routine cleanings. However, if you are notice excessive bleeding, it might indicate underlying health problems.

2.Why is my breath so bad?

Many people feel self-conscious about their breath. You and your hygienist can figure out whether it’s caused by your diet, allergies or acid reflux and discuss ways to treat and control it.

3. Should I switch toothbrushes (or floss)?

There is a dizzying multitude of choices when it comes to choosing a toothbrush or floss. The right one can make all the difference in how thoroughly you brush and floss. Consult with your hygienist on which ones will fit your individual needs, making it easier to reach all the nooks and crannies.

4. Which areas am I missing when I brush and floss?

Find out which areas of your mouth you need to spend a little extra time on. For instance, most people remember to brush thoroughly on the outside and the tops of their teeth, but then neglect the inside. Neglecting  areas can result is a buildup of acid, plaque and tartar, which can lead to cavities and gum disease.

5. How can I reduce tooth sensitivity?

Sensitive teeth are typically the result of worn tooth enamel or exposed tooth roots. Sometimes it’s caused by other factors, such as a cavity, a cracked or chipped tooth, a worn filling or gum disease.

Your hygienist and dentist can identify or rule out any underlying causes. Your hygienist can also recommend products and provide tips on how to manage your tooth sensitivity.

6. Am I showing signs of gum disease?

Are your gums swollen and do they bleed during and after brushing? Do you have persistent bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth? You may be developing gum disease. It’s important for you to share these concerns with your hygienist. If not properly treated, this can lead to tooth loss due to destruction of the tissue that surround your teeth.

7. Are my medications up to date in the chart?

Recording accurate patient information is essential to the practice of dentistry. Your dental practice needs the most up to date information to provide the best care possible and avoid any potential health complications. Make sure to check if you’ve provided the most recent list of medications and health updates.

8. I have noticed a few bumps and sore in my mouth.

Bumps and sores around your mouth can be a sign of infection, oral cancer or some other health issue. Alert your hygienist before your examination. This will help them locate something barely discernable that could be overlooked, but is causing you discomfort.

9. I am noticing changes in my oral health as I age.

Any number of oral health issues can develop with age, including a reduction in saliva production, difficulty healing from oral surgery or trauma, and so on. When you understand what can happen, you have a better chance to remain aware of changes and compensate for them accordingly.

Your dental hygienist is much more than the person who just cleans your teeth and critiques your brushing technique. They are also highly trained professionals equipped to provide you with all the answers that will help you take better care of your oral health and improve your oral hygiene routine. So ask away!

To schedule a visit, call us today at (212) 246-8700. Follow Gallery57Dental on Facebook here!

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