The saliva, bacteria, and proteins in our mouth form a thin layer that covers our teeth. When you eat food, tiny particles acids and sugars from the food stick to this film, creating a buildup on the teeth known as plaque. The bacteria and micro-organisms from this plaque ferment the sugars and release acids than can cause gum disease and tooth decay.
Although everyone has a tendency to develop plaque. How much ever thoroughly and regularly you brush and floss, these organized colonies of bacteria still remain in our mouth in the form of a film on the surface of the tooth.
This biofilm starts absorbing the mineral content of saliva. Through this absorption of calcium and phosphorus from the saliva, the biofilm is transformed into a hard substance known as calculus, commonly known as tartar which can be only removed with professional teeth cleaning by a dentist.
Is teeth cleaning the same as brushing your teeth?
No! Then what is the teeth cleaning procedure?
All dental treatments start with one round of cleaning. It is a procedure done for gum disease which includes removal of the plaque and tartar build-up from the surface of the teeth. Root planing is making the exposed root surfaces smooth so that the detached portion of the gums can reattach properly. Removal of these unwanted deposits reduces the swelling of the gums. Subsequently, after properly maintaining the dentition the gums will revert back to normal.
In this procedure, the dentist uses a ‘scaling tip’ to physically remove plaque and tartar build-up from all the surfaces of the teeth. The dental tips used to clean the surfaces of the teeth are efficient in flushing out the food debris stuck between your teeth, and removing the plaque and biofilm from the areas where your brush is also unable to reach.
Teeth cleaning is not a painful procedure at all. Sometimes there can be bleeding since your gums may be very weak. You may need topical anesthesia or anesthetics gels if you have severely swollen gums.
You can always remove time for teeth cleaning
This procedure is completed 20-30 minutes depending on the severity of the build-up. It may even take 1-2 appointments incase you have a lot of stains on your teeth. Cleaning is always followed by a polishing procedure to make the surfaces of the teeth smooth. This reduces the chances deposits getting built again and again.
You can expect minor bleeding for a few days after the procedure. The treatment will be successful only if you maintain your oral hygiene so that the health of the gums can be restored. They may prescribe an antiseptic mouthwash if required. Dentists recommend getting scaling done every 6-12 months to prevent gum disease.
After procedure tips for tooth scaling and planing
- After a deep cleaning, you may feel pain for a day or two. To prevent infection and control pain your dentist may prescribe painkillers or mouth rinse. Your dentist may also insert medication directly into the cleaned pocket.
- Good dental care is essential even after the treatment to prevent serious or recurring problems. Therefore, you must brush your teeth twice daily with a soft bristle brush. Eat balanced food and avoid sugary or crunchy food and avoid tobacco.
- Visit your dentist regularly for follow-ups.