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What Happens During a Teeth Cleaning?

Pediatric Dentist


Tooth cleanings are dreaded by many people. It’s easy to understand their trepidation given the poking, unusual noises, and occasional jaw soreness. However, for most people, tooth cleaning is straightforward and painless.

Knowing exactly what’s going on during the procedure might help you relax and appreciate the minty-fresh results even more. Contact us in Orem for professional advice.

1. A physical exam

A dental hygienist is usually the one who cleans your teeth. They begin by physically examining your whole mouth before starting the cleaning process.

The dental hygienist examines your teeth and gums with a tiny mirror for symptoms of gingivitis (inflamed gums) or other possible problems.

If severe issues are discovered, the dental hygienist may contact the dentist to confirm that it is safe to proceed.

2. Removing plaque and tartar

The dental hygienist uses a scaler to remove plaque and tartar from around your gum line and in between your teeth, guided by the little mirror. You’ll hear scratching, but that’s to be expected. The more tartar in your mouth, the longer it will take to scrape a particular area.

Plaque is prevented from forming and hardening into tartar by brushing and flossing. Tartar may only be removed at your dentist’s office once it has developed. If this is your least favorite aspect of the teeth-cleaning routine, the lesson is to brush and floss more frequently.

3. Gritty toothpaste cleaning

The hygienist washes your teeth with a high-powered electric brush that generates a grinding noise when they are entirely tartar-free. While it may appear frightening, it is a fantastic method to obtain a thorough cleaning and eliminate any tartar left behind by the scaler.

Professional cleanings employ toothpaste that smells and tastes like conventional toothpaste, selecting from various flavours. It does, however, have a gritty texture that softly washes your teeth. This tooth polishing is considered safe to undertake twice a year if done by an expert. At home, though, don’t be as rough with your teeth because you’ll wear down the enamel.

4. Expert flossing

Nothing beats a professional flossing session, whether you floss at home or not. Your dental hygienist can look deep between your teeth for any possible issue locations where your gums may bleed.

If you floss at home, this may seem superfluous. Still, having a professional floss your teeth eliminates residual plaque or toothpaste from the cleaning procedure.

5. Rinsing

After that, you rinse your mouth to remove any particles. Your dental hygienist will most likely offer you a liquid fluoride rinse.

6. Applying fluoride treatment

A fluoride treatment is the final stage in the cleansing procedure. This treatment is applied to your teeth as a preventative measure to help you avoid cavities for several months.

Your healthcare professional may inquire about your favourite taste. The frothy gel (or occasionally a sticky substance) will next be placed in a mouthpiece that fits over your teeth. It’s typically left on for one minute on your teeth. Fluoride varnish is applied to the teeth using a tiny brush in addition to the foamy gel. When fluoride varnish comes into touch with saliva, it hardens, allowing you to eat and drink right away.

Other potential steps

X-rays are usually done once a year, whereas professional teeth cleanings are done twice a year. Other exams may be performed during your appointment, based on what your dentist or dental hygienist sees in your mouth. A dentist may propose molar sealants for youngsters to help prevent cavities in difficult-to-brush places.

Whether you need any further actions or not, the most important thing is to maintain visiting the dentist for regular cleanings to avoid issues in the first place. You’ll feel more at ease — and maybe even look forward to these appointments — if you know what’s going on ahead of time.

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It's time to clean those pearly whites!