It’s that long-awaited time of year when buds begin to emerge on leafless trees and Calgarians start to shed their cozy parkers for lighter outerwear. It’s also the time of year that we get the itch to do some spring cleaning – removing the tell-tale signs of months cooped up indoors and preparing to welcome some warmer days in to our homes.
Talking about getting an itch for cleaning – the itch might not just refer to cobwebs and dust bunnies – but is a common sensation experienced by patients in need of a dental cleaning. Itchy teeth and gums are usually an indication of a high level of bacteria being present in the mouth. Dental plaque is made up of a mass of bacteria that thrives on food remnants that remain stuck between teeth, under gums and on other surfaces of the mouth. If plaque is not adequately removed with effective daily brushing and flossing it results in a high level of bacteria – which irritates gum tissue – often resulting in an itchy feeling.
General Dentists at Apple Dental in SW Calgary encourage patients to pay attention to the subtle signs and symptoms that the mouth reveals when it’s time (or overdue) for a cleaning. Puffy bleeding gums, bad breath and an itchy feeling are all red flags – a warning that oral tissues are inflamed and bacteria that is always present in the mouth have reached an unhealthy level. If gums bleed during normal brushing and flossing it’s time to contact your Family Dentist for a professional cleaning – as a regular toothbrush is not up to the challenge of removing plaque that is increasing under gums and between teeth.
Dr. Sean Wong, Dr. Shairoz Meghji and Dr. Stephanie Allen of Apple Dental explain that regular dental cleanings remove plaque (soft deposit of bacteria) and calculus (hard deposit of bacteria) which is an irritant to oral tissues – and removing bacteria also reduces the risk of developing dental decay. The bacteria that live in plaque release acids when feeding on food debris – and the acids are what erode tooth enamel causing a soft, sticky patch to form, which if left undiagnosed will develop in to a cavity.
If you’re in the mood for some spring cleaning – don’t forget to include your oral health. Taking care of your mouth also benefits the health of your body which in-turn allows you to enjoy the warmer days of spring.