Our O’Fallon Dentist Explains What We Do During A Professional Cleaning

Written by Dr. Brace on Jan 22, 2019

The American Dental Association recommends that patients of all ages complete professional dental cleanings every six months. In some cases, people with ongoing health or dental issues need to see their dentists more frequently.

There are a number of reasons to prioritize semi-annual cleanings; keep reading to learn more about what happens during these appointments.

Regularly schedule professional cleanings give our O’Fallon dentists the opportunity to assess our patients’ smiles for developing issues;

  • We’ll check your enamel for weak spots and cavities
  • We’ll evaluate any existing restorations you may have, to make sure that they fit will and are structurally sound
  • We’ll check your gum tissue for signs of disease
  • We’ll complete an oral cancer screening

The sooner that we are able to identify, and begin treating, these problems, the better your long-term dental prognosis will be.

Once we have a good idea of the current state of your smile, we’ll move on to completing a thorough cleaning.  

  • Our team will eliminate fresh plaque on your smile; plaque is a sticky bacterial film that develops on teeth and oral tissues throughout the day.
  • Then, we’ll clear away tartar, which is calcified plaque. When plaque is left undisturbed for a period of time, it hardens and bonds to the natural tooth structure; this is why patients require professional cleanings to get rid of it.
  • The last step is to buff and polish the teeth. This freshens the smile and minimizes stains and discoloration.

A professional dental cleaning minimizes oral bacteria in the mouth: bacteria that lead to cavities and gum disease. So, as a patient, you’ll complete professional cleanings twice a year, and keep up with your daily dental routine in the interim to keep bacteria at bay.

Too many people avoid completing professional cleanings because they feel embarrassed that it’s been so long since they’ve seen a dentist. Our O’Fallon dentists want to assure you that we are here to help you no matter what the current state of your smile; this is a judgement-free zone!