Dental Cleanings Step by Step
Do you ever wonder what your dental hygienist is doing during a dental cleaning? The goal of a standard dental cleaning is to remove plaque, tartar, and stains you’re your teeth. It’s not just to make your smile sparkle.
If you don’t address the buildup of plaque and tartar at your regular bi-annual appointment, it could progress to tooth decay and gum disease. Your body sees these substances as invaders and treats them like any other problem – it alerts the immune system into acting to fight it off. Inflammation is often the first sign that you need to see your dentist.
Here’s a peek behind-the-scenes at a dental cleaning:
1. An in-depth look inside
Your hygienist will examine your mouth to see if anything looks out of the ordinary. Hygienists are dental professionals who have been trained to spot warning signs and complications. By using a small mirror, the hygienist can check around the backs and sides of every tooth and gum for potential concerns. They can alert the dentist if necessary of any issues.
2. Getting into a scrape
Using a scaler in combination with a mirrored tool, the hygienist will scrape away plaque and tartar around the gum line and in between teeth. Once plaque has progressed into the tartar stage, it can only be removed at the dentist’s office and should alert you to a hiccup in your home care routine.
3. You’ve got Grit
Using an electric toothbrush, the hygienist will thoroughly clean your teeth and permanently remove any remaining tartar with a gritty toothpaste. Hygienists are trained to use this special abrasive cleaner to scrub and polish. It shouldn’t be used at home because you can risk thinning the enamel of your teeth.
4. How often do you floss?
No matter how good your daily flossing skills are, your hygienist will complete a thorough flossing deep between each tooth and gum. This procedure isn’t just for cleaning; it’s also a diagnostic tool to determine if there are potential trouble spots that need to be looked at more closely.
5. Rinse, swish, and spit
After a rinse to clear away any remaining debris from your cleaning, your hygienist will do one more sweep with the mirror to ensure nothing got missed. If you need fluoride, it will be painted on with a
brush and left to cure.
6. The man behind the curtain
The final step is having the dentist come review any potential trouble areas and discuss any possible interventions for improving your overall health.
To schedule an appointment at our Noblesville, IN dental office, please call (317) 773-1302.