Dental Cleanings Add Value to Your Smile
- Posted on: May 15 2018
Much of the work that is done in our Beverly Hills office revolves around making the smile look amazing. Cosmetic dentistry is rewarding for us and for our patients. At the same time, we still regard routine exams and cleanings as the foundation on which all beauty can be built. You may realize that twice-a-year dental exams are valuable. Most people do. Where interest seems to wane is in the area of dental cleanings. After all, doesn’t your dentist or hygienist do exactly what you do on a daily basis already? Not really.
There are particular steps that are followed during a routine dental cleaning. These professional treatments also coincide with exams that guide the cleaning process. For example, patients who have developed space between gum tissue and teeth are more susceptible to advanced gum disease. Therefore, certain measurements of periodontal space may call for a deeper cleaning.
Deep cleanings are the exception. Preferably, routine cleanings are maintained at six-month intervals. Each time we perform a routine cleaning, we:
- Remove plaque and tartar from the gum line. Plaque and tartar are made up of the same content: saliva, tiny food particles, and bacteria. The difference between the two is that plaque is softer and stickier, whereas tartar has calcified, or hardened, onto enamel. As you may imagine, tartar is a bit more difficult to remove. The more plaque and tartar there are, the longer this step of the cleaning may take.
- Clean and polish teeth with moderately abrasive toothpaste. The toothpaste that is used to clean natural enamel (not restorations like veneers) is gritty. It is more abrasive than the toothpaste sold commercially, which is why professional cleaning leaves teeth brighter and smoother. The toothpaste used during cleanings doesn’t remove enamel, but it does remove superficial debris that has settled in the pores of teeth.
- Floss between all teeth. The technique used during professional cleanings doesn’t differ much (or at all) from what should be done at home. And yet, we often discover unexpected information during this step. Having your hygienist floss for you may help you become aware of places you’re missing. Usually, the back of the mouth is a challenging area for flossing. Your hygienist may suggest tools or techniques that can help you achieve greater flossing success.
Posted in: General Dentistry