Good oral hygiene requires more than just brushing and flossing, it’s also important to undergo a teeth cleaning at least twice a year. At Choice Dental in Idaho Falls, Idaho, Trent Kelly, DDS, offers an array of preventive and general dentistry services, including routine checkups and exams, teeth cleanings, X-rays, oral cancer screenings, scaling and root planing, and more. To schedule an appointment today, book a consultation online, or call the office and speak with a friendly team member.
Teeth cleaning is a routine dental procedure used to prevent plaque and tartar from building up on your teeth and beneath your gum line. Undergoing professional teeth cleaning once every six months is one of the easiest ways to preserve your oral health in the long term. It can also lower your risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
At Choice Dental, teeth cleaning involves a multi-step process, including:
Before conducting a teeth cleaning, Dr. Kelly uses a small handheld mirror to look for signs of tooth decay and gum disease. He also asks about any symptoms you're experiencing, including if you have tooth sensitivity, or if your gums bleed when you brush and floss. After gathering this information, Dr. Kelly orders X-rays to get a closer look at your tooth roots and jaw.
Next, Dr. Kelly uses a tool called a scaler to clean your teeth of plaque and tartar. Plaque is a thin film of food particles, bacteria, and saliva that hardens on your teeth. During this part of your teeth cleaning, it’s normal to hear scraping noises. If you experience any discomfort, let Dr. Kelly know and he can administer sedation dentistry.
Next, Dr. Kelly uses a special toothpaste to polish your teeth. The toothpaste has a gritty texture, which helps remove any plaque missed during the initial cleaning. It also eradicates stains and discoloration, making your teeth appear brighter and whiter.
After the polishing, Dr. Kelly flosses your teeth. Flossing massages your gums and removes any food particles or debris from the spaces between your teeth and beneath your gums.
Most teeth cleanings take about an hour. If you use tobacco or have a family history of oral cancer, Dr. Kelly might also recommend an oral cancer screening. If Dr. Kelly detects gum disease, such as gingivitis or periodontitis, he might recommend scaling and root planing.
During scaling and root planing, Dr. Kelly carefully removes excess plaque from above and below your gum line (scaling). Afterward, he smooths your tooth roots (planing) which encourages your gums to reattach to your teeth.
If it’s been more than six months since your last teeth cleaning, schedule an appointment at Choice Dental today. Book a consultation online, or call the office and speak with a friendly team member.