What Does A Routine Cleaning Involve?

Phoenix_Dentist When you arrive at your Phoenix dentist for a “routine” cleaning, many of the activities that the dentist and his or her staff perform during your visit may seem unconnected with the teeth cleaning you’ve come to expect at that appointment. They’re not. Your regularly scheduled visit contains a number of activities that reinforce your oral health and support the improved smile that the cleaning provides.

Here are some typical components of a routine cleaning visit to a Phoenix dentist, with an explanation of why they are important.

1)    Oral cancer screening – Your dentist may examine your gums, tongue, neck and other areas to check for soft-tissue abnormalities in your mouth that warrant follow up. This is your best line of defense to ensure that any cancerous growths are caught in the early, easily treatable stages.

2)    Charting of your gums and teeth – Periodontal charting is a process in which your dental healthcare professional lists and describes the health of your teeth and gums. They may check the depth of any gum pockets, as well as the condition of each tooth. This allows the dentist to track the well-being of your teeth and gums over time.

3)    Taking X-rays and photos of your teeth – Dental X-rays allow dentists to detect damage and disease in teeth that is not visible during a physical exam, especially in the roots or below the gumline.

4)    Performing laser bacterial reduction – Prior to cleaning, your dentist or his/her staff may use a laser to reduce the amount of plaque in your mouth, creating an environment that is more resistant to plaque formation and tooth decay. This procedure allows the cleaning part of the visit the greatest chance for successfully improving the health of your teeth.

5)    The cleaning – Not just done to help you look better, a professional cleaning by a dental hygienist is also intended to remove tartar that has hardened on your teeth and can promote tooth decay and gum disease.

6)    Polishing – This step removes stains from your teeth, improving their appearance.

“A ‘routine’ cleaning visit is anything but routine,” says Dr. Carol Ford, a Phoenix cosmetic dentist. “It is your mouth’s physical, cancer screening, and bacterial reduction visit, all rolled into one.”


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