Making the time to visit your dental hygienist for teeth cleaning is a vital part of your oral hygiene and involves the removal of dental plaque that accumulates on the surfaces of teeth using special instruments that can prevent cavities, gingivitis and periodontal disease. While routine brushing and flossing are your first preventive measure against oral disease, visiting your dental hygienist will further remove any hardened deposits that buildup in areas where your brush or floss cannot access.
Dental Cleaning and Dental Hygiene Services
Dental cleanings by a professional dental hygienist is an important step for preventing cavities and early signs of gingivitis. Visiting your dental hygienist regularly for dental exams and cleanings ensures additional prevention against oral diseases.
Teeth Whitening helps brighten your smile by removing staining within your teeth. Unlike teeth cleaning, which removes stains on the surface of your teeth, teeth whitening affects the stains that have absorbed into the tooth and cannot be reached by cleanings alone.
What to expect during your dental cleaning appointment with the dental hygienist.
Is oral hygiene really that important?
Oral health is not only about keeping the appearance of your teeth but is critically vital for maintaining your overall health and well-being. In fact, more and more studies are demonstrating the connection between poor oral health and developing other conditions such as diabetes and respiratory problems, as well as being at higher risk for heart disease and stroke. So while brushing your teeth may be a boring habit that gets rid of the morning breath it does more than you think. Regardless of age, keeping your teeth healthy is always a good idea. Blood vessels and nerves pass through the gums and pulp in your teeth to provide nutrients and keep teeth active. If teeth are not maintained they can become damaged where bacteria in your mouth can enter the pulp to cause pain and possibly spread to other parts of your body through the blood.
How often do I need a cleaning?
Why do you hear that you should go to see your dental hygienist every 6 months or sometimes even more frequently? The reality is that not everyone's dental health is identical and the rate of buildup of products responsible for tooth decay and gum disease varies from person to person. Your dental hygienist is trained to recognize areas of concern and the severity of gum disease, as well as treatment recommendations. Generally, if your gums are healthy and you follow routine oral hygiene at home, you may not necessarily require cleanings every 6 months. With few exceptions, unfortunately gum disease is prevalent in our communities resulting in more individualized care by your hygienist. Someone with advanced gum disease who isn't actively engaged in maintaining oral hygiene at home may require cleanings more frequently, like every 2 or 3 months to prevent further damage to teeth and tissues, including the surrounding bone. The bottom line, there are many factors which determine how frequently you should have your teeth cleaned and after evaluating the health of your gums, your dental hygienist can recommend how often you need to make appointments.
What causes tooth loss?
There are several reasons for tooth loss that involves a combination of poor oral hygiene and dietary habits. It is recommended that teeth are brushed twice a day and flossed regularly once a day to prevent the buildup of plaque between your teeth. Uncontrolled plaque is responsible for the accumulation of bacteria that break down the hard surfaces of teeth resulting in cavities. Bacteria can also cause your gums to become inflamed leading to potential infection and bleeding. If not properly maintained, tooth decay and gum disease can weaken the supportive tissues surrounding the teeth leading to loose teeth and making them more prone to permanent loss. Sugary foods and chewy snacks, such as candy or taffy, can significantly contribute to tooth loss because bacteria uses sugar for energy and produces acids that breakdown teeth. Furthermore, smoking or grinding teeth can also damage your teeth and gums.
What causes gum disease?
Gum disease is also known as periodontal disease and is caused by plaque - a thin, colourless, and sticky film containing bacteria which forms constantly around teeth. Brushing your teeth helps remove this plaque, otherwise bacteria accumulates. As the bacteria feeds off the sugars, the acid leads to tooth decay which can form cavities. Uncontrollable plaque and chronic acid exposure also destroy supportive lining and gum structures that keep the teeth inside the bone. Gums can become inflamed, painful, bleed, and more prone to infection, causing further pain and decay. If this condition is not managed the gums can recede irreversibly exposing the roots of the teeth and lead to serious problems. Your dental hygienist can instruct you on how to keep your gums healthy and pain-free. If you notice that your gums bleed when you floss or are generally sensitive when you brush, talk to your hygienist.
Can periodontal disease be prevented?
By maintaining proper oral hygiene at home, managing a sugary diets, using fluorides and applying sealants to your teeth is a great way to prevent gum disease. Furthermore, visiting your dental hygienist regularly for a professional dental cleaning can ensure that your gums and teeth remain healthy.