The idea of dental cleaning scares many people. Between the occasional jaw discomfort, strange noises, and prodding, it is understandable why one would have such an apprehension. However, dental cleaning is a painless and rather simple process. Knowing about what goes on in the process helps ease stress and allows you to look forward to the results.
So What Is Dental Cleaning?
For those of you that do not know, dental cleaning is considered to be a part of the routine visit to your local dentist when you are not aware of any issues with throbbing teeth or cavities. But, it is surprising to know just how many people are not familiar with it. Dental cleaning is also known as prophylaxis and is a lot more effective than regular teeth brushing. Hence, it is recommended to go for a dental cleaning twice a year. It helps keep your teeth clean and healthy. Here’s everything you need to know.
The Physical Exam
A dental hygienist performs the teeth cleaning. Before the process starts, a physical exam is conducted in the entire mouth. A small mirror is used to check your teeth and gums for any potential concerns such as gingivitis. If any major problem is detected, the dental hygienist would contact the dentist to take a look before proceeding.
Tartar and Plaque Removal
While using the small mirror as a guide, the dental hygienist would also use a scaler to remove tartar and plaque around the gum line and in between the teeth. You would hear scraping which is completely normal. More time would be needed for scraping spots that have more tartar.
Regularly flossing and brushing prevents plaque buildup and the hardening of tartar. If you have tartar, you can get it removed. It might not be an interesting part of dental cleaning but it teaches you about the importance of brushing and flossing often.
Once your teeth have been completely cleaned and are free of tartar, the dental hygienist would proceed with brushing your teeth using a high-powered electric brush. It would make a grinding noise which might sound scary. Toothpaste cleaning ensures that you get a deep clean and removes any tartar that might have been left behind.
Toothpaste that tastes and smells just like regular toothpaste is used during the professional cleaning. You can choose the flavor of your liking. The gritty consistency of the toothpaste helps with the scrubbing. The polishing of teeth is considered safe if it is done by a professional. However, do not be harsh with your teeth when at home as you might end up damaging the enamel.
Although you might regularly floss at home, it would still not be as effective as a flossing session that is performed by an expert. The dental hygienist would locate any potential trouble spots and get deep between the teeth. You might think that a professional floss is pointless but it is extremely effective.
Once the professional flossing has been completed, you would need to rinse out the debris from your mouth. You would be given a liquid fluoride to help rinse it out.
Finally, the last step of dental cleaning is a fluoride treatment. The treatment helps protect your teeth against cavities for a few months. The dental hygienist would ask you about which flavor you want. Then, they would place a sticky paste or foamy gel into a mouthpiece and fit it over the teeth. The mouthpiece would be left on the teeth for about a minute. Fluoride varnish would also be painted onto your teeth using a small brush. It would harden if it comes into contact with saliva.
Professional dental cleanings should be done every six months. As for X-rays, they can be done once every year. However, the dental hygienist or dentist might require an X-ray to examine your mouth. Molar sealants are normally recommended to children for preventing cavities. Whether you might need to undergo an additional step or not, it is crucial that you visit your dentist regularly for teeth cleaning to prevent any issues from occurring.
The importance of getting dental cleaning done cannot be stressed enough. After you have read this post, you will know everything about dental cleaning. Thus, you will no longer need to worry about the procedure. By knowing everything in advance, you will feel at ease throughout the teeth cleaning and might even look forward to it.