Preventive Dentistry

Not a branch in itself, but involves the motivation and education of patients towards prevention of dental conditions and also emphasizes on the regular maintenance protocol and routine dental visits to be followed by the patients.

CARIES FREE DIET COUNSELING

A thorough knowledge on the importance of correct diet regimen will be imparted. The importance of having non-cariogenic foods such as fibrous and non-sticky, or refined foods is stressed upon. Patients are asked to refrain from sticky, processed foods, or sweets in between meals, as this forms an important basis for plaque formation and initiation of dental caries.

PSYCHOLOGICAL COUNSELING

Modern day stress is found to have an important role in the oral hygiene maintenance. A direct relationship between stress and poor oral health, higher incidence of dental caries and periodontal or gum disease is found. Thus counseling will be provided for such individuals to overcome stressful situations in day to day life and aim towards better oral hygiene.

KNOWLEDGE ON DENTAL MANAGEMENT OF MEDICALLY COMPROMISED PATIENT

It is mandatory that a patient informs the dentist about any medical or systemic condition that he or she is suffering from. Most commonly encountered are hypertension, diabetes, asthma, allergy, epilepsy, etc. Based on the medical condition the management protocol for every dental/surgical procedure may change or may have to be modified. A thorough understanding of the management of the underlying systemic condition for the dental procedure will be given to the patient.

PATIENT EDUCATION

Our primary aim is to educate and motivate patients regarding the cause of dental diseases, and prevention of the same . A continuous audiovisual display of the various dental conditions, their causes, management and prevention will impart an in depth knowledge to the patients. A personal session of patient education and motivation will be given to each patient. Patients are taught the importance of oral hygiene maintenance and various measures and steps towards achieving excellent oral hygiene. This will include:

  • Counseling for stopping habits like smoking, tobacco, alcohol etc.
  • Habit correction appliances for tongue thrusting, night grinding, etc.
  • Correction of faulty brushing habits
  • Educating the patients for correct brushing habits- Bass technique (sulcus cleansing technique) for adults, Fone’s technique (circular brushing). The use of powered or electrically operated toothbrushes for medically compromised, hospitalized patients and mentally challenged individuals demonstrated. The importance of correct technique, duration, frequency, type of brush, change of brush, tongue cleaning will be emphasized.
  • Importance of using dental floss daily for interdental areas and especially in areas of dental restorations for approximal tooth surfaces.
  • Use of mouthwashes, rinses or any other agents.

PIT AND FISSURE SEALANTS- CHILDREN AND YOUNG ADULTS

Children and young adults with newly erupted permanent teeth are generally advised pit and fissure sealants which are resin materials which can seal the pits, grooves, fissures on the biting surfaces of the teeth and prevent the initiation of dental caries. This is done routinely wherein the resin is applied to these vulnerable surfaces with an applicator and light cured. Sometimes a glassinomer cement is also used which is cured by a chemical setting reaction. It leaves a very smooth, hard surface, which is easy to clean and prevents accumulation of plaque.

FLUORIDE APPLICATION- CHILDREN

Fluoride is a mineral which is generally required for the healthy teeth. Fluoride generally reaches the population though drinking water as it is incorporated in it. Also almost all the toothpastes contain fluoride. It reacts with the hydroxyapatite in the outermost layer of the tooth that is enamel, to form fluorapatite, which is much stronger and prevents tooth decay. Indications for fluoride application:

  • White spots on teeth
  • Active decay
  • Orthodontic treatment
  • Hypersensitivity
  • Protect root surfaces

Fluorides are available in the form of gels, varnishes etc. They are generally applied in the dental office in special trays, which keep the agent in close proximity to the tooth surface. It is most commonly practiced in children.

ORAL PROPHYLAXIS

Involves the professional cleaning of the teeth and the gums followed by debridement and polishing the surfaces by using polishing cups and paste. It is generally done by a dental hygienist. This is a primary step towards elimination of plaque on the tooth surfaces and prevention of dental and periodontal diseases. For patients with high disease activity, this procedure to be repeated every 1 -3 months while patients with good oral hygiene and minimal intervention, can get it done once in 6 month- year.