The mouth is a natural breeding ground for all sorts of bacteria, which is why brushing and flossing regularly is essential. When bacteria build up, it can create a thin film of plaque over the tooth and along the gum line, increasing your risk of cavities and gum disease. If not properly removed, plaque can eventually turn into a hard-to-remove calculus known as tartar. In these cases, the dentists at Four Corners Dental Group in Wasilla and Anchorage, AK, may recommend a treatment known as debridement.
What Is Debridement?
This Alaska dental group explains debridement as a blanket term for a series of processes aimed at removing tough plaque and tartar buildup. The process is similar to teeth cleaning, but it’s more intensive. During your visit, the dentist may use a variety of common tools—such as a scaling pick or curette—to gradually remove plaque and tartar. If the tartar is too thick for these tools, your provider may use a special tool that uses ultrasonic vibrations to break apart the calculus.
How Does Debridement Help Oral Health?
If standard dental cleaning won’t remove plaque or tartar, debridement is the best way to get dangerous bacteria off your teeth and gums. Taking this step can help protect you from future tooth decay and gum infection.
The process is usually recommended when dentists are unable to conduct a standard dental exam, as the plaque and tartar buildup may be too thick to see what’s happening on the tooth’s surface. If this is the case, your provider will schedule debridement before an exam, so they can have a clear view of your teeth to check for cavities and other issues.
What Should I Expect During Debridement?
While the debridement process involves strenuous descaling, it is generally a pain-free process. However, since the treatment takes longer than standard teeth cleaning, you will likely have to schedule a separate appointment for your dental exam.
Once the process is complete, your dentist will provide a comprehensive examination, and you’ll leave with a cleaner, brighter smile. To avoid going through debridement again, it’s critical to improve your dental care habits by brushing and flossing twice daily.
The longer bacteria remain on your teeth, the higher your risk for dental cavities and gum disease, which is why it’s essential to see a dentist right away if your smile is affected by plaque and tartar buildup. Fortunately, if you need responsive debridement in Anchorage or Wasilla, AK, the family dentistry professionals at Four Corners Dental Group can help. Visit them online to learn more about the affordable dental care and advanced services. To schedule a convenient, comfortable exam, call to (907) 376-2790 to reach the Wasilla office or (907) 258-3384 to make an appointment at the Anchorage location.