Every 6 months is the ideal time frame to schedule general cleaning visits for healthy teeth. If you are a smoker or have periodontal disease or you are immunocompromised more frequent visits might be necessary to maintain your dental health.
Professional dental cleaning otherwise known as a Scale and Clean involves the following:
No matter how often you brush and floss, calculus still builds up on your teeth, especially in harder to reach areas and especially behind your lower front teeth. A regular toothbrush cannot remove this type of deposits so it is essential to have a professional Scale and Clean.
Dental caries (tooth decay) is caused by acid-producing bacteria that collect around the teeth and gingivae (gums) in a sticky, clear film called “plaque.” Without good daily oral hygiene and regular dental visits, teeth become more vulnerable to caries. Brushing twice a day and cleaning between teeth with floss or another type of inter-dental cleaner help remove plaque. Regular dental examinations and cleanings also are important for keeping teeth healthy.
Another key to good oral health is fluoride, a mineral that helps prevent caries and can repair teeth in the very early, microscopic stages of the disease
Fluoride can be obtained in two forms: topical and systemic.
Systemic fluorides are those that are swallowed. Examples include fluoridated water and dietary fluoride supplements. The maximum reduction in dental caries is achieved when fluoride is available both topically and systemically.
Topical fluorides are applied directly to the tooth enamel. Some examples include fluoride tooth-pastes and mouthrinses, as well as fluoride treatments at the dentist.
The fluoride preparation used in the dental office is a much stronger concentration than that in toothpastes or fluoride mouth rinses.
Depending on your oral health status, fluoride treatments may be recommended every three, six or 12 months. Your dentist also may recommend additional preventive measures if you are at a moderate or high risk of developing caries.