17 May Dr Johanna answers the most common questions about oral health and dentistry
From tips on maintaining excellent oral health and why you should stay away from over the counter teeth whitening products, Dr Johanna answers our most common asked questions here:
What are the most common problems that you see on patients on a daily basis?
Dr Johanna: “The most common problem that I see on patients on a daily basis is bad breath. About 85% of people with persistent bad breath have a dental condition that is to blame. Gum disease, cavities, dry mouth and bacteria on the tongue are some of the dental problems that can cause bad breath. Using a mouthwash to cover up bad breath when a dental problem is present will only mask the odour and not cure it.”
What is your best piece of advice for people to maintain excellent oral health?
Dr Johanna: “Maintaining good oral hygiene is one of the most important things you can do for your teeth and gums. Daily preventive care, including proper brushing and flossing, will help stop problems before they develop.”
How often should people see a dentist and why?
Dr Johanna: “People should visit the dentist at least twice a year (every 6 months) to have a full hygiene treatment performed. Also at these appointments, a comprehensive exam should be performed along with x-rays to help detect and prevent future dental issues from occurring. Regular dental visits are important because they help to keep your teeth and gums healthy.”
Can you tell us one thing to avoid doing to keep good oral health?
Dr Johanna: “Limit acidic drinks like soft drinks, cordials and fruit juices. Food acids soften tooth material and dissolve the minerals in tooth enamel, causing holes (cavities or caries). In severe cases teeth may be dissolved right down to the gum.”
What is your advice for people who conduct teeth whitening treatments at home or at shopping centres?
Dr Johanna: “Whitening treatments can be purchased over-the-counter at pharmacies, the local supermarket or beauticians. We do not recommend this method as the results are not on par with professional whitening methods performed by a dental practice. Whitening results can be less than desirable due to a lack of professional supervision, and can be damaging to the teeth and gums.”
Until next time that we get to chat with Dr Johanna again!