Dentist Near Me: Dental Cleanings: What to Expect

If you’ve been looking for a good “dentist near me,” you are no doubt seeking out a dental professional who provides all of the services that you need, including routine dental cleanings. These seemingly mundane appointments are actually vitally important in safeguarding the health and appearance of your teeth, mouth and gums.

To keep bacteria from growing unchecked, and leading to unnecessary dental problems like tooth decay and periodontal disease, the American Dental Association recommends that adults make an appointment with their dentist once every six months to undergo a comprehensive dental examination and cleaning.

Dental cleanings are normally conducted by a dental hygienist who will be removing excess plaque and tartar from around your teeth and gums. Since bacteria live and thrive within plaque, removing it also removes a large amount of bacteria. 

Dentist Alexandria Dentist Near Me
  • Prophylactic Dental Cleaning
  • Scaling and Root Planing
  • Periodontal Maintenance Cleanings
  • Gross Debridement Cleaning

“Prophylactic means “preventing disease.” So this type of cleaning is when you already have healthy teeth, but want to keep them that way so that you do not develop tooth decay or gum disease.

During a prophylactic cleaning, your hygienist will remove plaque and tartar from the front, sides, and back part of your teeth using a water stream or dental scaler. 

Also known as a deep cleaning, scaling and root planing involves cleaning both teeth and gum pockets. Patients with gingivitis or periodontitis are recommended for this treatment. In general, a single dental appointment will often suffice for gingivitis treatment.

Since periodontitis is a more severe form of gum disease, cleaning is a more involved process. It helps to reduce gum inflammation by removing plaque and tartar from the surfaces of the teeth and gum pockets beneath the gum line.

The end result of scaling and root planing is a reduction in gum inflammation. Also, your tooth roots are smoothed out, assisting your gums in reattaching to your teeth to help reduce gum pockets.

This is another type of dental cleaning for the treatment of gum disease, offered by dentist near me. As with scaling and root planing, it involves the removal of excess plaque and tartar, followed by root smoothing if required.

The main difference between periodontal maintenance cleanings and other types of dental cleanings is that they are typically performed more frequently. They are needed more frequently because periodontal disease is a progressive condition. Furthermore, it will continue worsening if it is not treated on a regular basis. 

In general, gross debridement is the most aggressive. This cleaning maintains a proper oral care regimen, or for those who have not visited the dentist for a long time.

Moreover, if plaque is not removed, it turns into a hardened form called tartar. This calls for the use of a heavy-duty electrical tool to loosen the tartar. After the removal of excess plaque and tartar, a prophylactic cleaning provides additional cleaning of the teeth.

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