A dental cleaning, also known as prophylaxis, is a professional procedure performed by a dental hygienist or dentist to thoroughly clean your teeth and gums. It goes beyond what you can achieve with regular brushing and flossing at home. During a dental cleaning, the hygienist will use specialized tools to remove plaque and tartar buildup from your teeth. Plaque is the sticky film that forms on your teeth due to bacteria, while tartar is hardened plaque that cannot be removed by brushing alone.
A dental cleaning not only improves the appearance of your smile but also plays an essential role in maintaining good oral health. By keeping plaque and tartar under control through regular cleanings, you can prevent gum disease, tooth decay, bad breath, and other potential complications down the road.
What Happens During a Dental Cleaning?
The dentist will begin by thoroughly examining your mouth for any signs of oral health issues such as cavities or gum disease. They may use special tools like mirrors and probes to get a closer look at different areas of your mouth. Next, they will use specialized instruments to remove plaque and tartar buildup from your teeth. This process is called scaling, and it helps prevent tooth decay and gum disease. The dentist will carefully scrape away any hardened deposits on the surface of your teeth.
After scaling, the next step is polishing. A gritty toothpaste-like substance is applied to a rotating brush or rubber cup, which helps to remove any remaining stains or debris from your teeth. This leaves them feeling smooth and looking shiny. Once the cleaning process is complete, our dentist may apply a fluoride treatment to strengthen your tooth enamel and protect against cavities.
Throughout the entire procedure, you'll be provided with instructions on proper brushing techniques as well as advice on how to maintain good oral hygiene at home.
How Often Should You Get a Dental Cleaning?
The frequency of dental cleanings can vary depending on several factors, including your overall oral hygiene habits and any specific issues or conditions you may have. In general, it is recommended to schedule a dental cleaning at least twice a year. This allows your dentist to remove any plaque or tartar buildup that may have accumulated since your last visit. Regular cleanings help prevent gum disease, cavities, and other oral health problems.
Why Are Dental Cleanings Important?
- Dental cleanings can help prevent cavities. Even with regular brushing and flossing, it's easy for bacteria to accumulate in hard-to-reach areas of the mouth. A thorough cleaning by a dental professional can ensure that these bacteria are removed before they have a chance to cause damage.
- Cleanings play a crucial role in preventing gum disease. Plaque buildup along the gumline can irritate the gums and eventually lead to gingivitis or periodontitis if left untreated. Dental cleanings not only remove this harmful plaque but also give your dentist an opportunity to assess the overall health of your gums.
- Additionally, dental cleanings provide an opportunity for early detection of oral health issues. During your cleaning appointment, your dentist will carefully examine your teeth and gums for any signs of problems such as cavities, cracked teeth, or even oral cancer.
- Regular dental cleanings are vital for maintaining optimal oral health. By preventing cavities and gum disease while also allowing for early detection of other potential issues, these appointments serve as a proactive approach to keeping your smile healthy and bright!
Long Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, located in College Station, TX, are equipped with efficient dentists and modern technologies which facilitate the best dental care facilities for patients. Call (979) 846-0082 and book a consultation with the dentist to learn more.