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What Is Preventative Dentistry? An Overview for Students at Dental Assistant School

2018-04-04 by Mark Harrington

dental diploma training
If you’re keen to become a dental assistant, then you’ve probably heard of preventative dentistry. In dental care, preventative practices refer to those that help maintain oral health as well as catch potential problems in their early stages. In other words, preventative dentistry is a proactive approach to caring for one’s teeth, gums, and general oral hygiene.

Practicing preventative care is important because it helps people avoid the discomfort and costs that could come with serious problems down the line. It also helps people enjoy healthy smiles throughout their lives.

Since there is a lot that can be done to practice proactive oral care, preventative dentistry encompasses a number of things. These include the implementation of a proper dental hygiene routine at home, regular examinations including cleaning and diagnostic screenings, and more. To learn about some of these preventative approaches and the important role they play, keep reading!

The First Steps to Preventative Care Begin With Oral Hygiene at Home

Graduates of dental assistant programs know that carrying out regular and proper oral hygiene at home makes up the foundations of preventative dental care. Every day, harmful plaque can build up on teeth, which is why removing it is necessary to prevent it from irritating gums and causing tooth decay. Moreover, if plaque is left on teeth for too long, it can harden into tartar, a harmful substance that can only be removed by a dentist.

Practicing good oral hygiene to prevent unwanted dental problems means brushing at least twice a day using proper technique. It also means flossing to reach any plaque and food remnants in the tight spaces between one’s teeth. Finally, rinsing with mouthwash helps remove the bacteria that causes plaque to form in the first place.

Regular Dental Checkups Play an Important Role in Preventative Dentistry

Sometimes individuals may neglect care at home. They may not utilize proper techniques, and some tooth decay or gum irritation may manage to sneak in. Professionals with dental diploma training know this is where regular dental checkups and cleaning can have a big impact.

dental assistant school

Regular dental checkups are an important component of preventative dentistry

While frequent visits to the dentist are no substitute for home care, they can help address bad habits or catch problems in their early stages. Dental visits are very important because they allow dentists to examine the mouth for any signs of problems as well as remove any tartar and stains. If dentists do detect any problems in their nascent stages during such a visit, early treatment is always easier and less expensive, and it also saves clients a lot of discomfort.

Typically, it’s recommended that individuals visit the dentist for a checkup and a cleaning once every six months. However, individuals who may be at risk of developing certain problems may need to schedule visits more frequently.

Graduates of Dental Assistant School Know Patient Education Is Essential

Care at home and regular checkups form the bedrock of preventative dentistry, but professional dental assistants are aware that there are a number of other ways that the teeth and gums can be proactively protected.

For example, another important component of preventative dentistry is oral hygiene education. This can be a lifelong process for individuals. If an individual get braces, for example, then their routine may also need to be modified. Even seniors may need to re-learn how to carry out their oral hygiene routine if they get dentures or if another change affects their oral care.

Overall, prevention is a better approach than addressing a problem once it has already taken root, so practicing preventative approaches is an important aspect of maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Are you interested in attending dental assistant school?

Contact the National Academy of Health and Business to learn about our programs!

Oral Health Resolutions You Can Recommend to Clients After Dental Assistant School

2018-01-10 by Mark Harrington

dental assistant school
Did you know that good dental health contributes to overall wellness? Making health-related resolutions at the start of a new year is common, but they aren’t often focused on oral health. Oral hygiene is important not only because it helps prevent bad breath, tooth decay, and gingivitis, but also because other diseases can be caused by bacteria progressing further into the body from the mouth. Looking after personal oral health also helps parents set a good example for their children.

In pursuing an education in dental assistantship, you can help contribute to the maintenance of your clients’ overall health by recommending resolutions related to oral care. Here are just a few suggestions that you could recommend.

Encourage Clients to Use Proper Brushing Techniques and Practices

If a client doesn’t already, one important resolution they can make this year is to brush regularly. It’s important for clients to brush their teeth at least twice a day for a minimum of two minutes. However, unless they use the proper technique or replace their toothbrush at the right times, then a resolution to brush regularly won’t have the optimal outcome.

dental assistant programs

Teaching clients proper brushing technique is important for improving their oral health

Graduates of dental assistant school are well equipped to educate clients on oral hygiene, demonstrating correct toothbrush positioning and brushing motions as well as when to replace toothbrushes, what type of toothpaste to use, and selecting appropriately sized brushes with soft bristles.

Recommend Regular Flossing After Dental Assistant School

Flossing helps clients reach an entire third of their tooth surface—between their teeth and below their gums—that brushing alone doesn’t. It’s in these areas that cavities and gum disease often begin. If plaque and food accumulation isn’t tackled at least once a day with flossing, then gums can begin to recede, and they don’t grow back. Gums are important for keeping teeth in place, so it’s very crucial to maintain a regular flossing regimen. If you have a client who wants to improve their oral health, you could recommend that they try to add flossing to their daily routine. You can also recommend alternative flossing methods to clients such as water flossers and interdental brushes to help them stick to their resolution.

Suggest Wiser Consumption Choices After Your Dental Diploma Training

Dental diploma training provides education on preventative dentistry and nutrition, preparing graduates to advise clients on food and beverage choices beneficial to maintaining good oral health.

Diet plays an important role in all aspects of health, including oral health. Sugary and acidic products cause the most harm, feeding bacteria and contributing to the damaging acid they already produce. For this reason, encouraging clients to swap out sugary snacks and drinks for ones that have more fibre and calcium can do wonders for oral health.

Reinforce Why Scheduling Routine Checkups Is Crucial for Prevention

Routine dental visits taking place every six months help prevent oral disease and reveal existing problems in their early stages before they require extensive and expensive treatment. In these initial stages, many dental problems don’t hurt, so clients may not be aware of them. However, a timely diagnosis can spell out the difference between requiring a filling or a root canal. Oral health also serves as an indicator of bodily health and can give early clues to major health problems such as diabetes. Full knowledge about the benefits of routine checkups can encourage clients to remember to book routine appointments and stay healthy in the new year.

Are you interested in completing dental assistant training taught by experienced industry experts?

Explore NAHB’s dental assistant programs.


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