When Do I Need A Deep Cleaning?

Phoenix_DentistOur teeth, like our living spaces, are easier to maintain when we clean them regularly. In the case of our home, it’s easier to take the trash out when we only have one bag to put out on the curb, not several … or hundreds. If you’ve visited your Phoenix dentist on a regular basis, he or she has helped you maintain order in your mouth by cleaning your teeth thoroughly, including hard-to-reach areas such as the area around crowns or teeth that are slightly out of alignment.

When daily oral health habits or dental checkups are ignored for a long period of time, your Phoenix dentist may recommend a dental deep cleaning, also known as scaling and root planing. This procedure is usually performed by a dental hygienist using either electric or ultrasonic instruments, or manual scaling tools. If there are signs of periodontal pockets around your teeth that are more than five millimeters in depth, a deep cleaning treatment can remove excessive dental plaque and tartar both from the surface of your teeth and from the roots. It can also aid in reducing gum inflammation and bone loss due to gum disease.

If your Phoenix dentist orders a deep cleaning for your teeth, expect to make at least two appointments so that the hygienist will be able to treat all four quadrants of your mouth. While a local anesthetic is often used during the treatment, patients rarely report significant discomfort during or after the procedure. Your Phoenix dentist may also recommend Laser Curretage to cleanse the pockets during your procedure. This is done by gently placing a laser filament into the pocket after it has been cleaned utilizing scaling instruments.

Periodontal pockets may also be treated with various medications, such as chlorhexidine, during the deep cleaning, and you may be asked to use salt water or chlorhexidine rinses afterward to ensure all the bacteria has been removed from your gums.

After your deep cleaning, your Phoenix dentist may advise brushing and flossing more gently for a day or two. They will also want you to come back on a regular schedule to monitor your dental health and to ensure periodontal disease hasn’t returned. If gum inflammation does return, you’ll probably be asked to make another set of deep cleaning appointments.

“Dental deep cleanings are a more intensive intervention for your teeth than a prophylactic cleaning appointment, but they also ensure your smile isn’t ruined by gum disease,” says Phoenix cosmetic dentist Dr. Carol Ford. “They are crucial to returning your mouth to a state of optimal health.”

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