Shreyasi Maiti in conversation with Dr. Harshil Mehta, a Prosthodontist, Implantologist and Specialist in Smile Designing, exploring restorative care on oral health
Dr. Harshil Mehta, director at Dentkraft Dental Clinics, a consultant Prosthodontist and Implantologist, who specializes in minimally invasive dental procedures for Smile Designing, Dental Implants and full mouth rehabilitation. It was in 2015, when he started “Dentkraft” in Kharghar as a single chair clinic. Now, it has transformed into a three-chair clinic with an in-house Dental Studio. Dentkraft provides you all dental specialities under one roof with an experienced team of specialist doctors.
He also teaches and conducts various workshops for emerging dentists on dental implants and smile designing. He is a member of Indian Prosthodontic Society, Indian Society of Oral Implantologist and presently the Vice President and EC member of Indian Dental Association, Kharghar.
Q. What’s the connection between oral health and overall health?
A. Achieving and maintaining a healthy mouth can have so many wonderful life-changing benefits. A healthy mouth can be a great asset. A healthy smile can truly transform our visual appearance, the positivity of our mind-set, as well as improving the health of not only our mouth but our body too.
How difficult it is to brush twice a day? We all can do it right? Sometimes, a simple solution is all it takes to maintain a healthy mouth!
Q. Patients are often scared of getting a teeth clean-up done, some say they make your teeth loose. Is it so?
A. It’s a myth. How can removing dirt make you weak? To make it simpler, we know our teeth are surrounded and protected by gingiva (gums). When the dirt settles around your teeth, it pushes your gums down, and makes its own space. Slowly this dirt calcifies and takes up most of the space. Now, it’s very difficult to get it removed by normal brushing, hence we require ultrasonic cleaning. Commonly called as “Scaling procedures”!! Once cleaned, this gives your gums a chance to come back and hold your teeth properly!!
Q.3 Any other benefits of teeth cleaning you would like to share?
A. Managing Diabetes!! Yes, you heard me right! People with high sugar levels often have moderate to severe gum disease (called as periodontitis). Many studies have found a co-relation with periodontal disease and high sugar levels. The bacteria in the tartar, and their toxins, if cleaned regularly, have shown positive effects in bringing down sugar levels in diabetic patients. At Dentkraft, we make sure, patients with history of diabetes undergo periodic oral check-ups and teeth cleaning to maintain a good oral health and to keep their sugar levels under check.
Pregnant women with healthy gums may be around three times less likely to have a baby that is premature, reducing the risk of having a low birth weight. Research says there is a one-in-four chance that a pregnant woman with gum disease could give birth before 35 weeks. This is because gum disease raises the levels of the chemicals that bring on labour.
Q. How does Dentkraft help patients wanting to improve their smile?
A. It takes us back to where we started. Digital Dentistry has given us so many choices now. Smile enhancement at Dentkraft is possible in the most minimalistic way, with Laminates & Veneers. DSD (Digital Smile Designing) has also helped our patients choose what kind of smile they want!
Correction of mal-aligned teeth is also done with Digital Orthodontics at our clinic…
Patients now have multiple options to select. With new-age technology entering our dental field, I would say, our patients are the most benefitted with it!
Q. With the pandemic going on, how safe it is for patients to get the regular dental check-ups done?
A. I would say, always make use of technology. Have an online/video consult with your dentist first. Then you can visit the clinic as per the dentist’s advice. Right from the beginning of this pandemic, we have been working every single day to relieve our patients, of any dental trouble they face. And I can proudly say, with all the safety protocols that we have followed, not a single case of COVID transmission has occurred from our clinic. All our doctors and staff have been COVID-free till date, and now, all have completed their vaccination too!
Q. Has COVID affected oral health too?
A. I would say a lot, and more than oral health, our mental health too!! We have seen some serious oral complications in patients with post-COVID recovery! Mucormycosis being one of them. Patients losing most of their jaw bones due to it. My advice to patients with post-COVID recovery would be, to have regular follow ups with your dentist and keep your sugar levels well monitored. Rather than internet, let your dentist be the right judge of your oral health!
Q. Speaking about Dentkraft, what makes it different?
A. Our Priority is our patient’s safety. Right from sanitizing the cabins after every patient, to making use of Autoclaves, UV disinfection chambers and biofilms for our instruments, we have strictly followed safety protocols right from Day 1 of Dentkraft.
We have completely incorporated minimally invasive digital dentistry into practice now… Gone are those days of multiple visits for a simple root canal procedure. With digital dentistry, we can do it in a single visit, with maximum precision and most importantly… in a painless way. !!
It’s the same with crowns and bridges. Digital dentistry has revolutionized the treatment protocols and our patients have accepted it with open arms! No one should die with their teeth in a glass of water!
Getting a dental implant done, to replace your missing teeth, is now a matter of few minutes…! With guided dental implant technology, we make the treatment simpler and more predictable!
Q. With all these gadgets and technology at bay, how affordable is quality dental treatment to your patients?
A. I would just say… “Dentistry is not Expensive … Neglect is …!!!”
Q. So how often do you recommend one should visit a dentist?
A. Before I answer this, I must tell you – The most beautiful and precious things in this world require maintenance. It can be either once a year, once every six months or once in a month!! It all depends on how important that thing is to you! It’s the same with your teeth and oral health. If you want your teeth to survive, give them the maintenance they need. In short, once every 3 months would be a good time to get your oral health checked! At Dentkraft, we make sure our patients receive a follow up reminder every 3 months!
Q. To end this conversation, any tips you suggest to help prevent dental problems from happening during COVID times ?
A. The solution is simple, brush your teeth twice a day with any fluoride toothpaste. Try to brush just before you go to bed. Cut down on your sugar intake and how often you have it.
Keep sugar consumption to meal times only. This will reduce the time your teeth are under attack
Use mouthwash daily to remove bad bacteria and keep fresh breath.
Try any mouthwash with Chlorhexidine. Studies have proved it to be affective against corona virus.
Sugar-free chewing gum can help produce saliva and neutraliz the plaque acids in your mouth.
Flossing your teeth is the best adjunct to brushing and remember you only need to brush those teeth, you wish to keep healthy!!!
Wishing you a healthy and happy life for as long as you live! Happy National Doctor’s Day.