Practicing good oral hygiene basics is the best line of defense against cavities, abscesses and other problems that can plague a person’s mouth. A visit to the dentist can show someone where changes need to be made and help direct improvements in cleaning habits. The following information can more fully explain what needs to happen…
A Guide to Getting a Cleaning from a General Dentist
Routine dental cleaning from a general dentist is a necessity, not a luxury. Plaque and tartar will wreak havoc on the teeth and gums if allowed to remain in the mouth for too long. Therefore, it is advisable to visit the dentist for a professional dental cleaning twice a year, preferably.
The dental cleaning procedure as explained by a general dentist
Plaque and tartar in the mouth contain millions of bacteria and routine brushing and flossing are usually not enough to eliminate them. Tartar is hardened plaque and can only be scraped off using special tools. Home oral hygiene is important, but it is equally important to have a dental professional clean the teeth regularly in order to maintain optimal oral health.
Professional teeth cleaning removes stains, plaque, and tartar that may have accumulated on the teeth and gums. Dentists typically recommend cleaning every six to 12 months to reduce the risk of decay and gum disease. In between appointments, good oral care at home is important for dental health.
The first step of the cleaning process is an examination. The dentist will use a dental mirror that functions as a magnifying glass to check the parts of the gums and teeth that contain plaque and tartar. The dental professional will focus on these areas specifically during the cleaning.
Removing plaque and tartar
After this, some dentists use ultrasonic vibrations to loosen plaque and tartar. They will adjust the frequency of the vibration for the patient’s comfort. Then, a scraper will be used to scrape off the plaque and tartar from around the teeth and gums. This process may be disconcerting, but there is no need for concern. It is often described as more of a discomfort than pain, due to the noise from the scraping.
The dentist may opt to smooth the teeth with a scaler, eliminating smaller deposits around the teeth. After this, the mouth will be rinsed thoroughly with water to remove any tartar residue that remains after the scraping process. The next stage involves brushing and flossing.
For this process, the dentist will use a mildly abrasive toothpaste and a powered toothbrush to brush the teeth. The brushing will be hard and thorough to remove any germ present on the teeth. The dentist will also perform professional flossing to clean in between the teeth.
Afterward, the dental professional may decide to give a fluoride treatment. The fluoride will be applied to the teeth and allowed to remain there for a minute or so before the patient spits it out. The fluoride treatment serves two main purposes. The first is to kill any remaining germs in the mouth and prevent plaque from forming on the teeth and gums for a while. Secondly, fluoride makes the teeth look brighter.
When was your last dental cleaning?
The teeth cleaning process is quick and straightforward. It falls under one of the preventive care provided by a general dentist to ward off oral health issues. Contact our dental office today to book an appointment for a dental cleaning and checkup.
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