Dental prophylaxis is a term for the professional teeth cleaning you get at a clinic. Performed by a dentist or hygienist, this is an essential preventative procedure that can safeguard your mouth against cavities and gum disease. In addition to encouraging good oral health, it also helps you maintain a beautiful smile.
How Dental Prophylaxis Works
Plaque is a soft, sticky film loaded with millions of bacteria that builds up on your teeth over time. If not properly removed, this transforms into tartar, a hard substance with a yellowish or brownish sheen. The bacteria in plaque contribute to cavities, while tartar leads to gum disease.
Dental prophylaxis is essential to effective removal of both plaque and tartar. First, a dentist uses a metal scaling tool to scrape away the substances from the teeth, above the gumline, and between the teeth. This is followed by professional polishing and a round of flossing to get any remaining debris.
Patients who are already experiencing gum disease may also have their inner gum pockets cleaned. This is usually followed by root planing, a procedure in which the tooth root is smoothed to eliminate remaining bacteria. Finally, a dentist may place an antibiotic or antimicrobial cream in the gum pockets to promote healing.
Do You Need Dental Prophylaxis?
Everybody should have regular professional teeth cleanings, regardless of their age. For most people, dental prophylaxis is only needed once every six months. Patients with special needs—for instance, diabetics who are more prone to infections or individuals dealing with gum disease—may require more regular appointments.
In addition to safeguarding your oral health, dental prophylaxis also benefits you aesthetically. By removing yellowish stains, you can feel more confident about your smile. Additionally, nixing plaque, tartar, and bacteria will freshen your breath.
For top-quality dental prophylaxis in Wasilla or Anchorage, AK, look to Four Corners Dental Group. This reliable team of dental professionals provides affordable care that puts patient comfort first. From dental implants to veneers, they offer a comprehensive array of services. Find out more about their locations online. To book an appointment with a dentist at the office nearest you, call (907) 258-3384.