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Dental questions

CherriBlossom's picture
CherriBlossom
Posts: 44
Joined: Mar 2012

Hi all, most of us visit our dentist 3 to 4 times a year for cleaning, what I want to ask is do you do deep gum cleaning or just regular cleaning? personally i never had deep cleaning done before. Any issues doing deep cleaning post radiation?

jcortney's picture
jcortney
Posts: 426
Joined: Sep 2012

Just today I asked my Onc, on my weekly visit, if it was time for me to go to the dentist (I'm 19 days post treatment).  He told me that teeth (and gum) cleaning throws a very large volume of bacteria into your system and didn't want me to go until I was at least 3 months post treatment.

Joe Cortney

Dallas, TX

MarineE5
Posts: 762
Joined: Dec 2005

CherriBlossom,

I can only give you the information I was given by my then Cancer Dentist that was part of all my cancer team. He stated that where ever I go to get my teeth checked to NOT have a deep clean done on my gums. He said that the Radiation Treatments that I received caused the Gum DNA to change and the mouth doesn't heal as well now. He said I could get the Plaque removed from my teeth and slight cleaning just below the gum line, but to tell the Hygienist to not go too deep. I go to the same dentist and hygienist so they are familair with my needs. Even when the hygienist is careful, my mouth is sore the next day.

This is my experience, others may have other thoughts. To this point, I have had no major work done since my radiation other then  2 caps put on due to my wanting to eat some hard candy one day and paid the price, my fault and a hard lesson, teeth are now more brittle from Rad's.

My Best to You and Everyone Here

Skiffin16's picture
Skiffin16
Posts: 8103
Joined: Sep 2009

I've only been on a six month schedule, but have had deep cleanings....

I also have had a crown since Tx..., a root canal and crown before.

I haven't really had a recommendation one way or the other, my dentist does know my history for what that's worth, LOL...

JG

fisrpotpe's picture
fisrpotpe
Posts: 1344
Joined: Aug 2010

i totally support MarineE5's post. 

i went to local dentist post treat the first 5-6 years, he gave up trying to save my teeth. i strated then to go a dentist with history of dealing with radiation exposure. i now have been seeing them for 11-12 years with huge success. 

they clean my teeth every 5 moths and do it gingerly with slight scrapping to clean but never below the gum line. 

my regiment of cleaning is waterpic with as warm of water that i can stand, floss, brush with bioteen drymouth tooth paster gel using sonicare tooth brush, rinse again with waterpic, use sonicare tooth brush and apply flouride treatment. i do this 3-4 times a day, but flouride only 2-3 times. 

most all my work on my teeth over the last 2-3 years has been repairs to the repairs that are falling apart. 

the waterpic was the biggest help to my gums when i added it to my daily care. 

john 

 

Billie67's picture
Billie67
Posts: 834
Joined: Jul 2012

Here's my 2 cents...I spent a little over 13 years in the dental field and this was our procedure with rad patients....due to the changes that rads cause in the tissues and bones in the mouth it was our standard procedure to NOT do deep periodontal cleanings at regular cleaning visits. The only time we would go deep was when someone had deep pockets that needed cleaning. Not everyone has deep pockets. Most of the time, cleanings were done gingerly with being careful to only scale just slightly below the gum line. If you don't scale a little beyond the gum line then there is point scaling at all. Making sure that the gums are tight around the teeth is a must and the dentist or hygienist must do that to make sure no debri is under the gum line. Debri left in there can cause decay and bone loss and in our case that would be worse than a non rad patient. That being said, it is not a bad idea to be on a 3 month recall just to make sure there is no decay or bone loss due to our lack of saliva. If your insurance won't pay for 3 month recalls then 6 will do but keep in mind that we rad patients have to be even more diligent than the lucky ones who haven't had to go thru rads. Keep your teeth clean as possible, brush after each meal if possible.
We also recommended to not have your first post radiation dental cleaning for at least 3 months after treatment is complete. Unless of course you have a dental need before that point.
I hope that helps or that you find the answer that is right for you.
Good luck :-)
Billie

fisrpotpe's picture
fisrpotpe
Posts: 1344
Joined: Aug 2010

they clean my teeth every 3 months! 

Billie67's picture
Billie67
Posts: 834
Joined: Jul 2012

That's a perfect cleaning recall. It would be ideal that we all have 3 month cleanings!
Have a great day!
Billie

CherriBlossom's picture
CherriBlossom
Posts: 44
Joined: Mar 2012

Thanks for the info! 

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