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Professional teeth cleaning is a part of good oral health practices. The American Dental Association recommends professional teeth cleaning twice a year for people that have healthy teeth and gums. If you have the early stages of gum disease it may be required more often.
Professional teeth cleaning is recommended to help improve oral health and to avoid gum disease and other dental diseases. Cleanings reach the areas that are hard to reach with your toothbrush or flossing where plaque and tartar build-up. Cleanings get your teeth clean above and below the gum line!
Why Regular Cleanings Are A Must!
Regular dental cleanings are a must for anyone that wants a brilliant bright healthy smile. Cleaning can help to remove tough stains that brushing can’t manage. It can also help to give your mouth that fresh clean feel but more importantly it helps to keep your mouth healthy.
Gum disease can be a very painful condition, regular professional teeth cleaning can be preventive to all those dental conditions. It is not just your oral health that can see improvement. Your overall physical health also depends on good oral hygiene practices.
Recent research has shown there is a strong connection between gum disease and cardiovascular disease. One of the ways to prevent gum disease is to stick to a regular schedule of professional teeth cleaning. Gum disease is prevalent in the United States affecting up to 50% of adults according to the Center for Disease Control. Millions of people suffer from dental disease unnecessarily.
Protecting your health starts with taking care of your oral health. During the cleaning, a visual oral exam will be conducted which can reveal any concerns. Most oral health issues are easier to manage with early detection. Even oral cancer is highly treatable with early detection. During your dental cleaning, if anything seems amiss, the dental hygienist doing the cleaning will alert the dentist.
What You Need to Know About Gingivitis (Gum Disease)
The good news is Gingivitis (gum disease) can be prevented with regular professional cleanings at the dental office. This condition is painful and something you want to avoid at all costs. The gums become inflamed, bone and tooth loss can occur.
The primary cause of gum disease is improper hygiene (see below for other contributing factors). Plaque and tartar stick to the teeth and are chockful of harmful bacteria. Plaque and tartar build-up can occur in the areas below the gum line that can be impossible to reach with a toothbrush.
Over time untreated plaque and tartar build-up will cause the gums to become inflamed and the disease can spread to the bone. Periodontitis (when gingivitis spreads to the bone) is what happens when gum disease is left unchecked.
Periodontitis can cause the gums to shrink away from the bone and form pockets where bacteria can continue to breed and infect the teeth, gums, and bones. This is a dire condition for your teeth and mouth and can be a very painful condition.
The Warning Signs
Your gums should not bleed when you brush. They should not be painful, look red or swollen. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms you must make an appointment as soon as possible to have an oral exam.
Other symptoms of gum disease can include white patches on the gums, a bad taste in your mouth, Halitosis (bad breath), pus coming from the interdental space, visual changes to the gums and shifting in the position of the teeth or loose teeth.
What Else Can You Do to Prevent Gum Disease In Between Professional Teeth Cleaning?
There are things that you can do to help keep your mouth healthy in between professional teeth cleaning. Some of what you need to do is simply avoiding certain activities that are known contributors to gum disease including:
- Smoking-If you are a smoker you should know that you are twice as likely as a non-smoker to develop gum disease. The solution is to quit now! There is a range of programs that can help you quit.
- A diet high in sugary beverages and foods-your diet plays a key role in good oral health. Sugary drinks and foods can fuel gum disease. Eat a balanced diet and avoid high sugar content.
Other causes of gum disease that may be out of your control include:
- Some medications. Certain medications can cause dry mouth. A lack of saliva production can be a contributing factor to gum disease. Drink plenty of water and chew sugar-free gum to ramp up the saliva production.
- Diabetes Mellitus can cause an impairment of circulation to the gums which can impede the gums from healing and make fighting gum disease difficult.
- Heavy alcohol use can also invite gum disease.
- Overcrowded teeth or overlapping teeth because they can be harder to keep clean.
A combination of some lifestyle changes and the support of the experts at Friendly Dentistry can help you to reduce the risk of gum disease.
What Else Can You Do to Keep Your Mouth Healthy?
Other things you can do to ward off gum disease and other dental disease is to brush your teeth at least twice a day, preferably after every meal and make sure you are flossing properly. Your dental hygienist can show you how to floss the right way.
Make water your beverage of choice during meals to help wash away food particles. If you can’t brush after every meal sugar-free gum can help to keep the saliva flowing and remove some of the sticky residues.
Let’s Get Your Mouth Healthy and Feeling Great!
We want to partner with you to help you enjoy a lifetime of good oral health. Make your appointment today! Our caring, compassionate, friendly staff is here to help you get the dental care that you deserve.