During your professional dental cleaning at Hughes & Hughes Family Dentistry, your registered dental hygienist is your gum health specialist. We remove that yucky biofilm (plaque) and hardened biofilm known as calculus.
Your dental hygienist will also assess your gum health by doing something called a periodontal evaluation or probing. We use a small ruler (probe) to measure the space between your gum and the bone that holds the teeth in your mouth. You can have small numbers (good) or bigger numbers known as pockets (bad). As the name implies, a dental pocket is an opening shaped like a little pocket.
When educating my patients about my findings, I like them to think of a pool table pocket and pool balls. The deeper the pocket or bone loss, the more pool balls or plaque can fit into that pocket, separating the gum from the bone.
It seems weird, right? It’s just one measurement your hygienist uses to make a proper assessment of your gum and bone health. Your hygienist also uses your most current x-rays to evaluate your bone levels. X-rays are not just for showing cavities; they are also taking a picture of your jaw bone.
Now, I know what you all are thinking … “I don’t like when my hygienist pokes me with that thing.” However, this is a critical step in your individualized assessment. I understand that it may be a bit uncomfortable, but it’s because the space is inflamed or ulcerated. The sooner we find where those inflamed spots are, the quicker we can take action and treat them. Trust us – we don’t like it any more than you do.
That’s why seeing your dental hygienist is very important. We not only professionally clean above and below your gums but also assess how you are brushing and flossing at home to ensure you are in the best dental shape possible!
We care about you and your overall health. Now more than ever, it is important to take care of yourself!
If you or a loved one has bleeding gums, please give our office a call at 610-942-3321 to schedule an appointment with your dental professional.
Until next time, love the gums you’re with!!