DENTAL HYGIENE & PREVENTION
PROFESSIONAL TEETH CLEANING
At SPINEL DENTAL, we are passionate about preventative care. Our preventive program allows the patient, dentist, and dental staff to engage in a cooperative effort to preserve the patient’s natural dentition and supporting structures.
Preventing dental disease starts at home with good oral hygiene and a balanced diet. It is continued in the dental office through regular dental exams, cleanings, and x-rays. Sealants and fluoride are also great preventive treatments that help protect the teeth from tooth decay and prevent the need for fillings, root canals, or even tooth replacement.
Sometimes catching a dental condition early is the next best thing to preventing it entirely. For example, if you come in for dental exams every 6 months as recommended by the CDA , we may be able to identify a minor gum disease infection and treat it before you even begin to feel the symptoms.
Prevention helps avoid serious and costly dental problems and is the key to having a healthy, confident, beautiful smile. Schedule your appointment for preventative care with SPINEL DENTAL today and get a better shot at enjoying healthy teeth for the rest of your life.
Dental Scaling and Preventative Care Specialties
Dental Exams and Cleanings
Dental exams and cleanings are a vital part of your oral care. They help us to catch any problems early and nip them in the bud before they have a chance to cause serious and painful problems. We suggest that patients visit us twice per year for dental exams and cleanings.
What does a dental exam involve?
A comprehensive dental exam will be performed by your dentist at your initial dental visit. During subsequent visits you will receive regular check-up exams, which include the following:
Examination of diagnostic X-rays: X-rays are essential for detection of decay, tumors, cysts, and bone loss. X-rays also help determine tooth and root positions.
Oral cancer screening: We check the face, neck, lips, tongue, throat, tissues, and gums for any signs of oral cancer.
Gum disease evaluation: We examine the gums and bone around the teeth for any signs of periodontal disease.
Examination for tooth decay: All tooth surfaces will be checked for decay with special dental instruments.
Examination of existing restorations: We check any fillings, crowns, or other restorative work you have had done in order to determine whether it is in good repair or requires replacement.
What does a professional dental cleaning involve?
Professional dental cleanings are usually performed by Registered Dental Hygienists. Your cleaning appointment will include:
Removal of plaque: Plaque is a sticky, almost invisible film that forms on the teeth. It is actually a living, growing colony of bacteria that feed on food debris on the tooth surface and sometimes beneath the gum line. As they feed, the bacteria produce toxins that inflame the gums and cause periodontal disease.
Removal of tartar: Tartar is hardened plaque that has been left on the tooth for some time and is now firmly attached to the tooth surface. Tartar forms above and below the gum line, and can only be removed with special dental instruments.
Teeth polishing: Your dental hygienist will also use special polishing equipment to remove stains and plaque that was not already removed during tooth brushing and scaling.
Fluoride has been clinically proven to play a role in the prevention of tooth decay and the preservation, even strengthening, of tooth enamel. Fluoride is an excellent and safe means of cavity prevention, patients who are opposed to fluoride can still benefit from other dental-friendly lifestyle changes, like limiting their intake of sugary and acidic substances.
Molars that have deep grooves (referred to as pits and fissures) behave as a trap for food and bacteria – and so these areas of the tooth are highly susceptible to decay and cavities. Fortunately, these grooves can be sealed off with a safe and effective dental sealant treatment. This is a popular preventative treatment for children, but adults can also benefit from the procedure.
Dental x-rays are essential preventative diagnostic tools that provide valuable information not otherwise visible during a dental exam. Dentists and dental hygienists use this information to safely and accurately detect hidden dental abnormalities and create an appropriate treatment plan. Without x-rays, problem areas may go undetected.
Dental x-rays may reveal:
Abscesses or cysts
Cancerous and non-cancerous tumors
Decay between the teeth
Poor tooth and root positions
Problems inside a tooth or below the gum line
Detecting and treating dental problems at an early stage can save you time, money, unnecessary discomfort, and may even save your teeth from eventually being lost to decay or periodontal disease.
Are dental x-rays safe?
Dental x-rays produce a low level of radiation and are considered safe. The amount of radiation exposure from a full mouth series of x-rays is equal to the amount a person receives in a single day from natural sources. Nevertheless, dentists do take precautions to limit the patient’s exposure to radiation when taking dental x-rays. These precautions include using lead apron shields to protect the body and using modern, fast film that cuts down the exposure time of each x-ray.
How often should dental x-rays be taken?
The need for dental x-rays depends on each patient’s individual dental health needs. Your dentist and dental hygienist will recommend necessary x-rays based on the review of your medical and dental history, dental exam, signs and symptoms, age consideration, and risk for disease.
A full mouth series of dental x-rays is recommended for new patients. A full series is usually good for three to five years.
Bite-wing x-rays (x-rays of top and bottom teeth biting together) and are recommended once or twice a year at your as part of your dental check-ups and will be used to detect new dental problems.
Your personal home care plays an important role in achieving a beautiful, healthy smile that lasts a lifetime.