“Biofilm” is an organization formed by microorganisms coming together and making them stronger, almost a microorganism state… The biofilm in the mouth is like this. However, because there are microorganisms in it, we should not think they are always harmful. When we think of bacteria in the mouth, we feel like killing them all for some reason. In a healthy environment, they are our friends.
The usual, healthy bacterial flora of the mouth has benefits such as protecting us from foreign and pathogenic bacteria and training our immune system. When this flora’s balance is disturbed, there is a risk of cavities and gum disease. Sometimes, situations such as black stains arise that constantly trouble us. In this case, we try to remove the plaque containing this pathogenic flora and create healthy flora again.
Our cleaning as dentists is vital in stopping the progress and providing a new start. But nutrition is also critical! For example, sugar (sucrose), which we know, causes the acid-producing and caries-causing microorganisms in the biofilm to increase, to organize more efficiently and to make it difficult to remove them by brushing. In other words, it makes the healthy flora unhealthy. In this case, you may need to rethink some of your habits along with your dental hygiene (in fact, it is similar to restoring our intestinal health – get rid of the harmful and create a favorable environment for the beneficial flora).
Here you can see part of an approach to dental cleaning called “guided biofilm therapy”. This approach emphasizes both patient motivation and minimally invasive cleaning of the teeth. The video shows the plaque-detecting agent we use to make the biofilm more visible to the patient during cleaning. In this way, we can see and remove biofilm in places we did not expect, increasing our patient’s awareness. It is also more fun to clean like this 🙂 The device we use here for cleaning is AirFlow. This device cleans stains and newly formed stones by spraying powders such as glycine, erythritol or sodium bicarbonate, which we choose according to the situation, together with water. We then use ultrasonic cleaners and hand tools to remove more challenging calculus. I used my Airflow device again after ultrasonic cleaning in the clinic.
Of course, as I mentioned above, although the cleaning we do eliminates disturbed flora and provides a new start, it is most vital that you maintain this cleanliness and provide an environment that will protect the comfort of beneficial bacteria, especially nutrition, for the balance of the flora.