Dental Cleanings by Professional Dentists
Teeth cleaning is a preventative treatment for diseases related to the teeth and mouth. The procedure is for the removal of tartar (or mineralized plaque), which can develop even with when patients brush and floss regularly. Teeth cleaning is especially important for areas that are difficult to reach in routine tooth brushing. Professional cleaning generally includes a tooth scaling, tooth polishing, and removal of tartar, if too much has built up. Our Livermore Dentists and dental hygienists use various instruments or devices to loosen and get rid of deposits from the teeth.
Professional dental cleanings (dental prophylaxis) are typically performed by Registered Dental Hygienists and cleaning appointments will include a dental exam, as well as the following:
- Tartar Removal: Tartar, or calculus, is a plaque that has been hardened that has been left on the tooth for some time and is now firmly attached to the tooth surface. Tartar forms above and below the gum line and the only to remove it are with specialized dental instruments.
- Removal of plaque: Plaque, an almost invisible film that develops on the teeth, is made of a growing colony of live bacteria, food bits, and saliva. It is important to remove these bacteria because it produces toxins that cause inflammation of the gums. This inflammation is the start of periodontal disease!
- Teeth polishing: Polishing teeth helps remove stains and plaque that usually not removed during tooth brushing and scaling.
Dental Cleaning Procedures
1. Physical exam
Most teeth cleanings are done by a dental hygienist, who will do a physical exam of your entire mouth before actually starting the cleaning process. The hygienist uses a small mirror to look around your teeth and gums for any symptoms of inflammation of the gum (gingivitis) or any other early signs of potential diseases.
2. Plaque and tartar removal
With the small mirror to guide them, the dental hygienist uses a tool called a scaler to get rid of plaque and tartar around your gum line and between your teeth. A scraping sensation is normal. The more tartar that has accumulated in your mouth, the more time they’ll spend scraping particular spots.
3. Cleaning with gritty toothpaste
After making sure that your teeth are completely free of tartar, the hygienist will brush them using a high-powered electric brush, which makes a grinding sound. While it doesn’t sound too pleasant, it’s the best way to deep clean teeth and removes any tartar that was left behind from the scaler.
4. Expert flossing
Even if you floss regularly at home (or you don’t), an expert flossing session is a good idea. Our dental hygienist can help you get deep between your teeth and identify any possible trouble spots where you might bleed at the gums. This is the perfect time to ask for tips and tricks on how to floss properly!
Next, the hygienist will ask you to rinse your mouth out to get rid of any debris. They will usually give you a rinse of liquid fluoride.
6. Applying fluoride treatment
The final step of your teeth cleaning appointment is a fluoride treatment. A fluoride treatment is a way to protect your teeth and help fight against cavities for several months.
Professional Teeth Cleaning by Livermore Dentists
When you have bad dental health, it can have a serious effect on your overall health. The health of your mouth affects your ability to speak, eat, and swallow. When you have good, strong teeth, you are able to breakdown food and process the right kinds of food. Without teeth, you will be more vulnerable to nutritional deficiencies. Bacteria in the mouth can cause a person’s throat to become inflamed, which disrupts their ability to swallow and ingest any medications required to maintain health or recover from an illness.
Professional teeth cleaning can fundamentally help you avoid these types of conditions. At, Foothill Dental Care in Livermore, our goal is to educate our patients on how important good oral hygiene is and how they should maintain it. Schedule cleaning today by calling our Livermore office at (925) 961-5484 today.
Dental cleanings are not painful. If you experience pain during your cleaning, be sure to tell your dental hygienist or dentist. This could be an important sign to alert your dentist to a potential issue.
Most dental hygienists suggest having the teeth cleaned professionally at least twice a year. You may be required to make frequent cleaning and examination visits to treat any oral disorders. But, if you are unable to get a checkup appointment twice a year, getting a routine examination at least once a year should be enough.
Dental cleaning is different from a whitening treatment. After teeth cleaning, your dentist has removed plaque and tartar, which has a yellow tint. Your teeth might appear to be instantly whiter. But, remember, a white smile is not the goal of teeth cleaning. The goal is to have a healthy smile.