Dental Hygienist Therapy in Townsville
No dental team is complete without a dental hygienist and at NQ Surgical Dentistry Sharon Everett provides our dental hygiene care.
Sharon’s gentle and caring approach to dental hygiene, coupled with her clear communication make her extremely successful in her patient treatment and management achieving excellent clinical outcomes. Sharon is popular with her patients and respected by her work colleagues and peers.
Routine dental hygiene care
With 20 years of dental hygiene experience, Sharon has worked in all types of dental practice. She has provided the routine and regular dental hygiene cleaning associated with general dental practice annual check-ups; also known as scaling and polishing. Indeed, she can provide this treatment at our practice for all our patients, or for patients who wish to attend NQ Surgical Dentistry only to see Sharon for preventive dental care. This type of care involves time spent removing plaque and hard deposits from the teeth and polishing away any staining on the teeth. Often at the time she sees a patient for this care it may become obvious that the patient could achieve a better standard of cleaning at home and it is the job of the hygienist to assist and support patients by demonstrating effective dental hygiene cleaning measures and then help the patient learn to perform cleaning to the best standard of which they are capable.
Advanced periodontal care
Sharon Everett has had the additional experience of working alongside a specialist in gum disease while she was in the Royal Australian Air Force. This provided her with experience in treating more advanced forms of gum disease and monitoring treatment progress. She also has the experience of working alongside a specialist in gum disease known as a periodontist. Sharon continues to monitor our periodontal patients and provides the “deep” cleaning of roots. This must be performed under local anaesthetic ensuring treatment is not in any way uncomfortable. Treating patients with advanced gum disease is very different to providing the general oral cleans required in general dental practice and such therapy requires additional skills, experience, and equipment. Once Sharon has completed the root cleaning using Piezoscaling, (high-frequency vibration) she often uses a diode laser to eliminate the bacteria remaining in the “pocket” beneath the gum margin. Laser energy also helps the gum inflammation clear up restoring health to the periodontal tissues thus clearing up the gum disease.
Dental hygienists also have a wealth of general oral health and nutritional information that they can teach to patients who find themselves in a high-risk group for dental disease including decay and gum disease. Such information is often valuable when the hygienist is dealing with parents of small children. Incorrect nutritional choices at that stage of the child’s development may lead them into a life of dental restorations and ongoing dental treatment. Early advice and nutritional information given to parents can help establish good eating habits early on in the child’s life that may ensure good oral health for life.
Widespread gum disease
Here at NQ Surgical Dentistry we address the increasing problem of advanced gum disease that affects around 15% of humans. This translates into 3.3 million Australians who are subject to severe gum disease likely to result in significant tooth loss through gum disease. The extent of this problem has yet to be fully appreciated as many sufferers have not yet been diagnosed and frequently we find patients who have escaped diagnosis despite regular routine general dental hygiene care.
Sharon and Colin Priestland aim to make a significant contribution to improving the oral health of patients who suffer from gum disease. Improving oral health has now been found to be linked with improved general health. Research has now clearly demonstrated that poor oral health, and in particular gum disease, is linked with increased incidence and prevalence of coronary artery disease, strokes, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease and kidney disease.
A variety of approaches to treatment
Patient compliance with home care measures involving excellent plaque control, and the elimination of smoking in patients suffering gum disease are the two most important factors in achieving a successful outcome following treatment.
Patients who are susceptible to gum disease will always be susceptible as it is primarily a genetically influenced condition with many other modifying factors including smoking, diabetes, autoimmune disease including rheumatoid arthritis, stress and the use of certain medications. While patient’s genes cannot be modified and their reaction to the accumulation of plaque bacteria will always be severe gum inflammation and adjacent bone destruction, it is possible to teach them to remove nearly all their plaque. If almost no plaque remains after cleaning, inflammation will disappear and health will return to the tissues.
Individualised treatment planning
At our practice, we offer individualised treatment and support as required by each patient. The frequency of root cleaning, the use of adjunctive antimicrobial therapy including occasional use of antibiotics in aggressive periodontitis, and the need for localised surgical and regenerative therapy is all tailored to individual needs and this is largely the reason why we enjoy such a successful outcome to gum disease treatment in our practice.
Start at the beginning
The initial consultation is the foundation on which we can build up patients’ knowledge and understanding of their condition. If a patient does not understand exactly what is required of them and what they are aiming to achieve, then how can they be expected to achieve a successful outcome to treatment. Before we start a dental hygiene treatment, all patients receive a very clear, easy to understand explanation of plaque, inflammation, gum disease and its treatment. Once patients have this underpinning knowledge and understanding we can then move forward to help them achieve the complete control of the plaque, the inflammation and hence the destructive periodontitis. Patient compliance is so important and all along the way patients are supported and encouraged to achieve good plaque control using techniques that are simple and easy to use.
Dental Hygiene Townsville
For more information on dental hygiene or to book an appointment, please contact the friendly team at NQ Surgical today.