Is a trip to the dentist in your near future? If that’s the case, you might be wondering how much time to block off in your schedule for an appointment. Read on to learn more about what a dental cleaning is, how often you should have one, and why it’s so crucial to your oral health.
What is Dental Cleaning?
A dental cleaning is an appointment you make with your dentist to clean and check your teeth. During a dental cleaning, you will get treatments that are both preventive and diagnostic. Some preventive treatments are getting rid of stains, putting sealants on the teeth, getting fluoride treatments, getting rid of plaque and tartar, polishing the teeth, and, if necessary, cleaning dentures or partial dentures.
To find out if a tooth is decayed, diagnostic treatments may include looking at the gum tissue, checking for oral cancer, and taking X-rays and 3D scans. Jefferson Dental and Orthodontics is proud to be at the forefront of technology-driven oral healthcare, providing you with specialized dental scans such as the iTero 3D scan and Overjet AI.
The dentist may also look at how you bite, chew, and swallow, as well as your medical history. If you need more care, you may be told to see a dental specialist. During dental cleanings, you may also get advice on nutrition, how to quit smoking, and how to brush and floss your teeth.
Why It’s Important to Have Your Teeth Professionally Cleaned
Doesn’t your mouth just feel better after a professional teeth cleaning? It’s because your dental hygienist can clean away things you miss during your daily oral care routine. Even if you have braces, your dental hygienist can work wonders with your teeth and gums!
Professional Dental Cleaning Steps
Teeth cleanings are something that many people dread. It’s simple to see why they might be concerned given the poking and scraping of the teeth. However, professional teeth cleaning is usually quick and painless. Your anxiety may be reduced if you are fully informed about the procedure. Let’s go through it.
Dental cleaning procedures often start with a scale. In dental scaling, tartar and plaque are scraped away from the gum line and the spaces between teeth. In most cases, an automatic ultrasonic scaler or a thin metal hand scaler is used. Plaque and tartar are eliminated with the aid of low-frequency vibrations, pressurized air, and water in the portable ultrasonic scaler.
After the plaque has been removed, the teeth are ready to be polished. A polishing paste is applied to each tooth individually with an automatic handheld device. The device uses a small rotating head to buff the teeth and makes them shiny.
Professional dental flossing may take less time than you think. Flossing is the last step before rinsing and going about your day.
How Long Does a Dental Cleaning Take?
If you have poor oral health, a dental cleaning could take a lot longer. A dental cleaning should only take around 30 minutes if your teeth are in good condition. A dental cleaning can take up to an hour if you have cavities and tartar accumulation due to poor oral hygiene. Prevention of dental problems usually means fewer visits to the dentist.
How Often Should You Get Dental Cleaning?
Cleanings should be scheduled every six months, as recommended by the American Dental Association (ADA). If you get these cleanings every six months, your dental insurance should cover them. Having your teeth cleaned on a routine basis is an important part of preserving and enhancing your oral health. And if you have braces, it’s recommended you go every three months.
Do Dental Cleanings Hurt?
The most important thing to remember is that dental cleanings do not have to be painful. If you want a pain-free cleaning, it’s important to go to the correct dentist and maintain good dental hygiene in-between visits.
Can You Get Your Teeth Cleaned If You Have Braces?
While there are some things you can’t do with braces, not only can you have your teeth cleaned, but you should! In fact, even though you see your orthodontist frequently, regular dental cleanings every three months are necessary to keep your teeth clean and healthy.
What Happens When You Don’t?
When you have braces, it’s easy to miss things between your teeth and around your brackets because of the wires. However, that debris can build up and harden. Left unchecked, it can weaken tooth enamel and discolor your teeth. The last thing you want is to complete your orthodontic treatment only to end up with damaged teeth!
Your dental hygienist can clean those hard to reach spots and alert you to any problem areas. If you’re having a tough time reaching certain places, your regular check-up is a great time to ask for advice.
What to Expect When You Get Your Teeth Cleaned
When you have braces, your cleanings may take a little longer than usual, but not by much. Your dental team will take extra care to reach between your teeth, around your brackets, and along your gum line without disrupting your braces.
If you’re due for teeth cleaning, the team at Jefferson Dental & Orthodontics is here for you. We want to help you keep your teeth healthy and strong so you can have the smile you desire. Find the office nearest you and make an appointment online.
We can’t wait to welcome you back for your next visit.