Dental cleanings are essential to maintaining good oral health. It may seem like a hassle to schedule appointments with your dentist at least twice a year. However, the benefits of regular dental cleanings outweigh any inconveniences. Regular cleanings can prevent significant dental issues. In the long run, routine cleanings will save you time, money, and pain.
Patients who have regular dental cleanings are more likely to have a brighter, whiter smile than others. This is partially due to the cleaning itself. During your cleaning, a dental hygienist thoroughly removes plaque from all surfaces of your mouth.
First, they use a scaler to scrape away any visible plaque. A scaler is a metal device with a fine point at the end. It is perfect for getting into tough-to-reach spaces. After scraping your teeth, they will move to floss. Dental hygienists are expert flossers, meaning they can remove more plaque from under your gum line and between your teeth. Then, they will use a high-powered rotating brush with a gritty toothpaste to get rid of any remaining plaque.
Eliminating plaque does help brighten your smile. However, the high-powered brush and toothpaste polish your teeth. These steps help to remove surface stains and whiten your teeth.
Regular cleanings help prevent major dental issues, such as tooth decay and gum disease. In addition, because the focus of your dental cleaning is to remove plaque, it also reduces the chances of plaque-related problems.
For example, gum disease is common for patients who do not floss or do not floss well. When plaque remains on your teeth, it can cause your gums to become inflamed. This is when you might notice swelling or redness along your gum line. Without treatment, this can advance to more severe issues, including tissue decay and tooth loss.
When you get regular cleanings, you are less likely to suffer from tooth decay and gum disease. However, your dental team will spot issues if you begin to have them. They can show you what steps to take to prevent significant dental problems.
One of the first steps of your dental cleaning is to have x-rays done of your mouth. Although this may seem insignificant, it actually allows your dental team to have a complete picture of your oral health. It is possible for your teeth to look healthy from the outside, but an x-ray may tell a different story. An x-ray can show issues that are developing under the surface of your teeth.
Additionally, your dentist will be able to identify the beginnings of problems as they examine your mouth. For example, the first stages of a cavity typically don’t cause physical problems. This means that you won’t feel any pain or sensitivity until the cavity burrows into your tooth. However, your dentist will catch the initial discoloration and treat the cavity before it causes a lot of damage.