Even though regular dental cleanings are important for oral health, many people fail to prioritize them. A recent National Health Interview Survey revealed that more than 30% of American adults have not had a dental checkup in over one year, even though the American Dental Association recommends seeing a dentist at least once every six…
Are There Different Types of Dental Cleanings?
Undergoing dental cleaning is an excellent way to keep the teeth healthy and prevent oral issues that may attack the teeth and its supporting structures. There are different types of dental cleanings based on the patient’s needs. These dental cleaning procedures serve different purposes, and it helps when patients are aware of them to get a full understanding of what they need to maintain good oral health and improve the appearance of their smile.
Types of dental cleaning
Teeth cleaning procedures come in different types, and patients can discuss these options with their dentist. It is important to note that these cleaning procedures achieve the same result — cleaner teeth — but the methods and purposes are different. The following are the main types of dental cleanings:
A prophylaxis cleaning is a type of dental cleaning that the dentist usually recommends for patients with a healthy oral cavity. The prophylaxis cleaning is meant for routine maintenance, such as eliminating accumulated plaque or tartar as well as minor stains from the surface of the teeth, gums, and hard-to-reach areas. For people who practice good oral hygiene and go to the dentist regularly, a prophylaxis cleaning will probably be the suggested dental cleaning procedure. The procedure removes debris around the teeth and gum but not the bacteria below the gum line.
Scaling and root planing (SRP)
Scaling and root planing is a procedure for those who have been diagnosed with active periodontal disease, including gingivitis or periodontitis. The procedure is slightly more invasive than regular dental cleaning and entails deep cleaning of the gums, gum line, and the surrounding soft and hard tissues. The dentist will also smoothen out the root surfaces and may include the application of localized antibiotics. SRP may also require multiple visits to finish, and the dentist will recommend ongoing gum maintenance at regular intervals to manage the disease and prevent reinfection.
If a person has not visited the dentist in several years, there will probably be a significant amount of plaque accumulation on the gums, teeth, and in between. So, a gross debridement is usually suggested as a deep cleaning process to remove the tartar deposits in every part of the oral cavity.
However, gross debridement is not only for people who have not seen a dentist in a long time. First, the dentist will conduct an oral exam. After the exam, the dental profession will determine if a routine prophylaxis dental cleaning is enough or if a gross debridement will be required before the prophylaxis cleaning.
Gum maintenance is a regular checkup for people at the risk of serious oral concerns. More important, periodontal maintenance may be necessary for people with gingivitis or periodontitis. The process typically involves the dentist cleaning every area of the mouth. The routine continues over a specific period until the dentist is sure that oral health concerns have been adequately managed and there is no risk of symptoms redeveloping.
If you think you might benefit from dental cleaning, book an appointment with the dentist.
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