Every child and adult should visit their dentist every six months for a dental check-up and cleaning. When your dentist or their hygienist cleans your teeth during these visits, they remove unwanted teeth stains, plaque between teeth that you may miss when you brush, and tartar that develops when plaque hardens and becomes difficult to remove when brushing at home.
If you dislike the traditional dental cleaning process, then you should learn about the new dental cleaning options that are now possible due to advances in dental technology.
Read on to learn about the three main dental cleaning types available today and each of their unique benefits.
1. Traditional Dental Cleaning
Most dentists today still offer traditional dental cleanings because this cleaning type is effective and trusted by many patients. To begin a traditional dental cleaning, a dentist or hygienist first examines a patient's teeth and gums to ensure they are healthy enough to undergo the cleaning process.
Then, the dental professional removes any visible plaque and tartar from teeth with a dental scaler, focusing on the area around the gum line that many people miss when brushing at home. Next, the hygienist or dentist scrubs teeth with a high-powered professional electric toothbrush and gritty toothpaste to remove lingering plaque and tartar and surface stains from teeth. Finally, the dental professional flosses teeth using traditional floss, and the patient rinses their mouth with water.
A fluoride treatment may then be applied to teeth to help strengthen them and protect them from cavities and decay.
2. Ultrasonic Cleaning
Many people who have an aversion to the traditional dental cleaning process dislike having plaque and tartar removed from their teeth with a dental scaler. The feeling of a metal instrument scraping against teeth can be undesirable for some and others dislike the sound this scraping process makes.
For this reason, some people enjoy having their teeth cleaned with a newer process called ultrasonic cleaning. When performing ultrasonic teeth cleaning, a dentist or hygienist starts the teeth cleaning process by removing plaque and tartar from teeth with an instrument called an ultrasonic scaler instead of a traditional scaler.
The ultrasonic scaler does not require scraping to clean teeth; instead, the scaler produces ultrasonic vibrations and emits soundwaves that break plaque and tartar on teeth into small pieces and then rinses these substances away with a targeted stream of water. The vibrations and sound waves this device produces cannot be felt or heard by a patient. After using the ultrasonic scaler, the rest of the teeth cleaning process is typically performed as usual.
The ultrasonic scaling process is a more comfortable alternative to the manual scraping of tartar for some people and can often be performed more quickly than traditional scaling can.
3. Guided Biofilm Therapy
Another newer type of routine dental cleaning is called guided biofilm therapy. This dental cleaning method does not rely on the scraping of teeth with a manual scaler or the use of a gritty toothpaste to remove teeth surface stains and plaque. Instead, during this process, a dentist utilizes several devices that project only mildly abrasive powder on and between teeth to remove these substances.
To begin guided biofilm therapy, a dentist first applies a special substance to teeth that stains only biofilm, which is a layer of bacteria buildup, on teeth a bright color, such as blue. Then, a special dental device is used to project a pressurized stream of mildly abrasive powder onto teeth until all biofilm is removed. Stubborn tartar, if present, is then removed using an additional dental device that targets the tartar with a more targeted and highly pressurized stream of powder.
If a patient suffers from gum disease, then an additional instrument is used to project a special bacteria-killing powder into gum pockets.
After these tartar and plaque removal steps are performed, a patient then rinses their mouth and a fluoride treatment may then be applied to teeth.
Due to advances in dental technology, there are now several ways dentists can perform routine dental cleanings on their patients. If you dislike traditional cleanings, then ask your dentist if you are a good candidate for an alternative, modern dental cleaning technique.Share