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4 Questions to Ask Your Dental Hygienist at Your Next Cleaning

June 23, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — springhettidentistry @ 7:14 pm
Hygienist with patient at dentist appointment

It’s almost comical. As your hygienist starts working on your teeth, they ask, “So, how are you?” With a mouth full of dental equipment, you manage to make a few gurgled sounds in an attempt to communicate that you’re doing well. They nod like you spoke some language that only dental professionals can understand, but you know it’s hopeless trying to hold a conversation from there.

While it can seem superfluous to spend your dentist appointment asking questions, it could actually vastly improve your oral hygiene routine and lead to a healthier smile. Here are four questions to consider asking your hygienist at your next visit:

What Can I Do to Improve My Oral Health?

Even if your teeth and gums are healthy at your visit, your hygienist can let you know of new techniques and products to help maintain your beautiful smile. On the other hand, if you’re getting cavities frequently or are experiencing tooth decay, then they can recommend preventive measures that can disrupt the pattern and get your oral health back on track. While they may make some suggestions throughout your appointment, asking them directly can give them time to expand on their answers and point you in the right direction.

Did You See Any Warning Signs of Other Health Issues?

Although your bi-yearly check-ups largely revolve around a dental exam and professional cleaning, these visits can also alert your dental team to non-tooth-related health issues. Conditions like oral cancer and osteoporosis often have symptoms like loose teeth, bleeding gums, and unusual sores in your mouth that tell your dentist something is wrong. If any abnormal symptoms are found at your appointment, your dentist or hygienist will let you know so you can contact your primary care physician.

Is It Normal to Feel Pain, Discomfort, and Sensitivity?

Brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and regularly visiting your dentist are all preventive tactics to avoid the consequences of cavities and gum disease. During your appointment, make sure to note and bring up any unusual symptoms you experience (i.e., shooting pain, issues with sensitivity, etc.). This will help your hygienist know what to look for, notice any red flags while you’re in the chair, and ease your concerns once you are home.

When Can I Book My Next Appointment?

A healthy at-home oral hygiene routine is important, but it shouldn’t replace regular visits to your dentist, because they can do things you simply can’t at home. To eliminate the likelihood of you skipping one of your appointments, it is important to schedule your next visit before you even leave the office. That way both your oral care and overall health can be closely monitored throughout the year.

The next time you are in the dentist’s chair, don’t hesitate to speak up! It can make all the difference in maintaining your beautiful smile.

About the Author

Thanks to his degree from the University of Louisville School of Dentistry and completion of multiple state-of-the-art courses, Dr. Springhetti is able to provide high-quality care in both general and cosmetic dentistry. If you have any questions about your oral hygiene routine or would like to schedule an appointment, visit his website or give him a call at 317-875-7645.

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