Teeth cleaning is a simple and painless procedure that aims to remove plaque, tartar, and stains that have accumulated on the teeth. The professional cleaning of teeth is a crucial part of good oral hygiene and is needed every 6-12 months to maintain the health of your teeth and gums and prevent tooth decay, as well as the likelihood of periodontal disease progressing.
What are the benefits of dental cleaning?
What happens during teeth cleaning?
Teeth cleaning is a simple and painless treatment, which is performed on the patient lying down in a comfortable dental chair. The dentist uses specialized instruments to gently remove the buildup (plaque, tartar, and stains) without causing harm to the teeth. The entire procedure usually takes about 30 to 40 minutes. Knowing exactly what steps you’ll go through during this period of time can help ease your stress and allow you to enjoy the results:
- Initial examination
Before the actual cleaning starts, and with the help of a small mirror, the dentist checks around your teeth and gums for any signs of inflamed gums (gingivitis) or other potential concerns.
- Removing plaque and tartar
With the help of a scaler and a small mirror that serves as a guide, the dentist gets rid of plaque and tartar around your gum line and in between your teeth. Hearing and feeling some scraping is normal, and it should cause no discomfort.
- Applying polishing toothpaste
Once your teeth are free of any bacterial buildup, the dentist will apply a flavored polishing toothpaste made of pumice and a tiny amount of fluoride. Coarser than regular toothpaste, polishing toothpaste has a gritty consistency that gently scrubs your teeth.
- Expert flossing
The dentist will floss between neighboring teeth to remove any plaque left. During this step, the dentist may ask you about your flossing habits and recommend certain techniques, especially if you’ve experienced inflamed gums while doing it.
- Applying fluoride treatment
Fluoride treatment is used to protect your teeth against cavities for several months by strengthening the enamel (or outermost layer of teeth). Fluoride varnish will be “painted” onto your teeth with a small brush and since it hardens when in contact with saliva, you’ll be able to eat and drink immediately after.