Cleanings are an important part of your dental care plan. They are essential in preventing tooth decay and gum disease. We recommend that you visit our dentist at least twice a year for a cleaning.
Cleanings are also done after other dental treatments, like teeth whitening, to remove any residual bleach, which can corrode your enamel or cause sensitivity. Before gum therapy to get rid of inflamed gum tissue, you may need a cleaning to remove buildup from the surface of your teeth that the toothbrush cannot reach.
What Is Plaque?
Plaque is a sticky, colorless film that builds up on the teeth. It is made up of bacteria and saliva and sticks to your teeth when you eat foods that contain sugar or starch. If you do not brush or floss your teeth daily to remove plaque, it can turn into a hard substance called tartar.
Tartar cannot be removed by brushing alone and can only be removed with a professional cleaning. Plaque buildup and tartar can lead to gum disease, cavities, and other health problems. Regular dental checkups and cleanings can help keep your teeth and gums healthy.
What Is a Dental Cleaning?
A dental cleaning is a procedure that is done to thoroughly clean the teeth and remove residual debris and plaque buildup from the teeth and around the gums. The dental hygienist will use an ultrasonic scaler to break up any hard deposits on your teeth and polish them afterward with a gritty toothpaste-like paste and a high-powered brush.
This will remove stains from coffee, tea, or smoking, as well as surface stains from things like wine or berries. A cleaning typically takes between 30 minutes and an hour. Some patients need additional treatments like root planing and scaling to treat gum disease.
After a deep cleaning, your mouth will feel refreshed and clean due to the polishing process. You may also have fewer instances of tooth pain or discomfort in the days after your appointment. Some patients may experience some mild sensitivity to hot or cold foods for a few days after their treatment, but this will go away on its own.
How Often Should I Get a Cleaning?
Dental prophylaxis, or professional teeth cleanings, are required every six months to prevent periodontal disease. During your six-month checkup, Dr. Christopherson will thoroughly clean your teeth to remove any plaque and tartar buildup that has accumulated above and below the gum line. Some patients also require deep cleanings or scaling and root planing to remove deeper bacteria from below the gum line.
Periodontal disease is a serious oral health concern that can lead to tooth loss if not treated early. Gum disease attacks the soft tissues of the mouth and the bones that support your teeth and eventually leads to tooth loss when left untreated. Routine prophylaxis appointments and cleanings are the most effective way to keep your smile healthy and prevent gum disease.
To find out more about the dental services we offer at Christopherson Family Dentistry, call (715) 344-9684 or schedule a consultation online. You can also visit us at 2901 Church St, Stevens Point, WI 54481.