Why do some patients need a dental clearance prior to heart surgery?
With so many different kinds of toothbrushes and toothpastes on the market it can be confusing for consumers to know which ones are right for them. Talking to a dental hygienist or the dentist is a good idea because we can explain the products and how they affect the parts of the patient’s mouth they are trying to clean properly.
A regular manual toothbrush sometimes does not brush off as much plaque as a spin brush. If a patient is having trouble removing plaque at home, I will often recommend that they switch to a spin brush. I always recommend the ones that are smaller and circular and rotate right and left. We also recommend spin brushes simply because people often do not spend enough time brushing.
Additionally, I coach patients on how to hold their hand so that the correct surface of the brush bristles is making contact with the corners of their mouths and in between teeth—areas that can be difficult to reach without the proper technique. After this coaching, we check in at the next hygiene visit and provide additional coaching if needed. Patient commitment to cleaning between visits is very important and patients appreciate this instruction because it usually helps to change their habits with good results.
If the patient is willing to make the investment, I recommend a power brush for quality and convenience. I have found the rechargeable, more expensive spin brushes will last longer than the less expensive or battery-operated brushes. The battery-operated brushes require new batteries often and these devices will need to be replaced more frequently than the rechargeable brushes.
In terms of toothpaste, if the patient is experiencing sensitivity then I recommend Sensodyne toothpaste. Otherwise I recommend the top brands such as Crest and Colgate among others.
If the patient is using a spin brush, flossing, and using a recommended toothpaste, then they will likely get a good report from their dentist and hygienist.
Jessica Sapara, Dental Hygienist
West Park Dental
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Do you find yourself waking at night gasping for breath? Are you exhausted all day long because you just can't get a good night's sleep?
'Apnea' is a Greek word meaning "without breath"; people who have apnea literally stop breathing in their sleep. A cessation of breath lasting for 10 seconds in adults, or 2 and 1/2 breath cycles in a child, is the clinical definition of sleep apnea.
To help patients who grind their teeth, the first step is to get to know the patient and learn about their lifestyle. So many people have excess stress in their lives that often leads to clenching the teeth or grinding the teeth, or both.
When a patient tells me, they want to be smart about their insurance and make sure they are choosing a company that will cover them in the best possible way, I offer my services to the patient.