Preventive dentistry and oral health

The world is a mirror, smile to it and it will smile you back.

We have to admit that in the modern world the first impression is extremely important. Researchers into human behaviour argue that we judge about a person’s physical, mental and emotional resources by our instinctive first impression of his/her appearance. When we first meet with people we focus our attention on the face. Radiant smile automatically inspires confidence in a person.
We see perfect smiles all around us: celebrities, heroes, news reporters – they all have dazzling smiles. Therefore, a beautiful smile and good oral health have a great effect on our relations.
The first quest for a perfect smile dates back to very old times. The Sumerians were concerned about tooth decay already 5000 years BC. A “tooth worm” was considered to be the cause of poor health and oral thrush.
The development of modern dentistry started in the 19th century. With such a big concern about oral health dentistry saw very fast development with a number of specializations.

Keeping teeth healthy is cheaper than having them filled!

According to the calculations made in Scandinavia, dental prophylaxis is 40 – 50 times cheaper than treatment. Dental caries starts already in childhood and the first regular teeth are filled then. 35-44 years old Lithuanians in average have 14-15 teeth damaged by caries, filled several times or extracted. At the age of 65-74 Lithuanians have already 23 damaged teeth.

Therefore prophylaxis is vital for keeping our and our children’s teeth healthy. Children from very young age, i.e. 2-3 years have to learn about the benefits of oral health and to start developing oral hygiene skills. Children must be told in an understandable way about the importance of teeth cleaning. They must also be taught how to wet the tooth-brush and press the tooth-paste. Children must be taught proper techniques for brushing their teeth, i.e. not only the front teeth, but also teeth along the sides and in the back, the inner, outer and chewing surfaces of the teeth. Brush movements must be not only horizontal but also vertical. Lower teeth must be brushed by down-up strokes, upper teeth by up-down strokes. Teeth must be brushed at least 3 to 5 minutes. It is recommended to rinse the oral cavity after every meal. For cavity protection encourage your children to eat less products containing refined sugar, such as candies, cookies, cakes, jams, canned fruits with sugar. To protect teeth enamel avoid giving your children cold drinks or food after hot meals.

Oral hygiene is based on daily dental care at home. Seek advice from your dentist as to the proper techniques and measures. So, each person is responsible for his/her daily oral hygiene; nevertheless, it must be supported by professional oral hygiene procedures given by your dentist or dental hygienist every 6 months or more often, if necessary.

Teeth brushing is very important, however brushing alone cannot remove tartar, also called dental calculus, that accumulates over time. Tartar must be removed to reduce the risk of dental caries, periodontal disease or even the loss of teeth. Tartar accumulates on the tooth surface over the years. When tartar forms at and underneath the gumline or between the teeth it can be removed only by professional oral hygiene. During oral hygiene soft plaque and hard tartar is removed from all surfaces of the teeth and periodontal pockets together with bacteria and their toxins. At the patient’s request this procedure can be performed with anaesthesia. Medical products and anaesthetics are applied for uncovered sensitive necks of the teeth.