Words You May Hear Us Use


  • PERIODONTAL - Around or near the tooth
  • GINGIVITIS - Inflammation of the gums
  • PERIODONTITIS - Inflammation to the gums (gingivitis) but also an inflammation to the deeper structures around the tooth including the periodontal ligament, the material attaching part of the tooth (cementum) to the bone around the tooth (alveolar bone). The progression from gingivitis to periodontitis is not inevitable. Gingivitis can be prevented through your intervention. Gingivitis and periodontitis are different conditions.
  • PERIODONTAL POCKET - The space or pocket between the gum margin and the surface of the tooth. A significant pocker occurs only when there is periodontal disease present.
  • DENTAL STAIN - Stained or discoloured saliva adhered to the teeth. It is of no clinical significance.
  • PLAQUE - Sticky yellow to tan coloured material on the teeth containing saliva, bacteria and debris including white blood cells, fats and carbohydrates. One milligramme of plaque contains hundreds of millions of bacteria.
  • CALCULUS - Hard, mineralised plaque
  • TARTAR - Another word for hard, mineralised plaque
  • SCALE AND POLISH - Removal of plaque and calculus from the teeth followed by polishing to reduce the roughness on the tooth
  • ROOT PLANING - Removal of plaque and calculus on the root of the tooth below the gum line.
  • HALITOSIS - Bad breath. Often from the mouth but can also originate from deeper in the gastrointestinal system.

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