What to Expect During Teeth Cleaning

Posted on: August 16, 2018

Not everyone is a huge fan of teeth cleanings, thanks to the strange tools and constant prodding by the dentist during the procedure. The truth is, a dental cleaning is one of the least invasive treatments a person can get at the dentist.

Patients who understand precisely what is going on during teeth cleaning tend to enjoy the process more. Being knowledgeable about the treatments helps reduce apprehension, anxiety and stress.

The main stages of teeth cleaning

Here are the main steps of a dental cleaning:

1. An oral examination

One of the first things a dentist will do during a cleaning is to conduct a full examination of the patient's mouth. The oral professional will use a small mirror to look for signs of gum disease and other dental issues.

If the dentist notices something is wrong, the cleaning might be put on hold while the developing issue is addressed first.

2. The removal of tartar

During the appointment, the dentist uses a unique tool called a scaler to remove tartar and plaque from the patient's gum line and teeth. The patient might hear some scraping sounds, but this is a regular part of the process. The more tartar accumulation the patient has, the more time the dentist will need to spend removing tartar from the person's teeth.

Tartar cannot be removed by brushing and flossing. Only a scaler can be used to remove tartar from teeth.

3. Sandpaper toothpaste cleaning

After the patient's teeth are free of tartar, the dentist will clean them using a powerful electric brush. This process is done to remove tartar that the scaler could not get off. The dentist will often add a rough-textured toothpaste to the patient's teeth. This toothpaste helps clean and polish the patient's teeth

4. Professional flossing

There is nothing compared to a flossing session performed by a dentist. They will get in between the patient's teeth and detect any areas with gum sensitivity that bleeds easily.

Getting professional flossing also helps remove any leftover debris from the toothpaste used earlier or other parts of the cleaning process.

5. Rinsing

The patient's mouth is finally rinsed with water or a fluoride-infused solution.

6. Fluoride treatment

The final stage of teeth cleaning session is a fluoride treatment. This step is done to protect teeth from decay for months at a time. Patients are often allowed to select the flavors they prefer, then the fluoride is applied to a mouth tray that the person bites down on.

The dentist might also decide to coat the patient's teeth with a fluoride varnish.

Other possible stages

Depending on what the dentist notices during a teeth cleaning, X-rays might be needed to get a better understanding of any issues that are developing. The dentist might also decide to use a dental sealant if the patient is susceptible to decay.

What are you waiting for?

Having your teeth cleaned twice a year should be a part of everyone's dental care routine. Contact one of our dentists to schedule your next session.

Call (530) 982-4077 today to reach Pier 210 Dental Group.

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