You’ve heard it many times before that you need to see your dentist twice a year for a thorough, professional teeth cleaning.
Perhaps you’re afraid of going to the dentist.
Maybe you have a meticulous at-home dental hygiene routine. You avoid foods and drinks that stain teeth and cause cavities. Your teeth are white and straight. You don’t ever remember having any tooth pain.
Why do you need to go to the dentist to have your teeth cleaned anyways? You take adequate care of them.
No matter how well your at-home dental care habits are, you still need to regularly get your teeth cleaned and examined by your dentist.
If you haven’t had your teeth cleaned in a while or you have a child who is curious about how their first dental cleaning will go, here is a concise breakdown of what to expect at a routine teeth cleaning and examination appointment at Stonecrest Family Dentistry:
When you get your teeth cleaned at our general dentistry, we’ll first scrape off the tartar and plaque that has accumulated on the surface of your teeth as well as that which has accumulated under the gum line. For this procedure, our dentist or hygienist will use a scaler, which is a small metallic instrument that has a sharp, bladelike end.
After we use the scaler to scrape off the tartar and plaque, we’ll have you rinse with water, eliminating the debris particles that may have gotten dislodged.
It is not uncommon for your gums to slightly bleed during this process.
Next our dentist or hygienist will apply a grainy, abrasive paste onto an electronic toothbrush and will rigorously brush your teeth. After a few minutes, we’ll wash your mouth with water to get rid of the paste. We’ll then floss between each tooth.
If you don’t properly floss or don’t floss at all, your gums may be extra sensitive and may bleed during the flossing.
This professional deep cleaning would have gotten rid of all the built-up plaque and tarter you missed while cleaning your teeth at home. It also creates a smooth surface on your teeth which makes it harder for new plaque and tartar to adhere onto.
After we clean your teeth, we’ll look at the condition and health of your teeth, looking specifically for signs of tooth decay and gum disease. To do this, our dentist will look into your mouth using a small metal probe and a small, angled mirror. Your gums will be inspected for the presence of swelling, redness and unusually deep pockets. Your upper and lower teeth will be looked at for and evidence of teeth grinding or TMJ (temporomandibular joint disorder). Your neck, palate, lymph glands, cheeks, tongue and lips will also be looked at for any symptoms of infection or the presence of oral cancer.
Typically, regular oral cancer screening is done for patients at higher risks, such as those over the age of 35 and those who smoke. High risk patients are also encouraged to visit the dentist more often for a cleaning and an exam.
The importance of a twice-yearly, professional dental cleaning can’t be stressed enough. The longer you put off a dental cleaning and exam, the more at risk your teeth are for possible, major problems.
If you’re looking for a dentist who does dental cleaning in the Tega Kay and Fort Mill area, contact us at Stonecrest Family Dentistry today to schedule an appointment.