Maybe it’s been a while since you were at the dentist, or perhaps your dentist has found early-stage periodontal disease at your most recent checkup. If this describes you, your dentist may recommend deep teeth cleaning for your next dental procedure. This may leave you with some questions. What is deep teeth cleaning? Who needs deep teeth cleaning, and why?
Sometimes called gum therapy, deep cleaning is the process of cleaning the gums between the teeth and down to the roots. This thorough cleaning procedure is designed to remove tartar buildup down below the gum line, which is a common cause of gingivitis, bad breath, periodontal disease and loss of tooth enamel. In other words, if a reputable dentist recommends that you get a deep clean, it’s an important procedure that could help save your health and smile.
How Is Deep Teeth Cleaning Different From Regular Teeth Cleaning?
Routine exams and cleanings help remove the plaque that builds up on your teeth. Most of that plaque is found near the gum line. If you routinely see the dentist, get regular cleanings, and have good oral hygiene, you probably won’t need a deep cleaning.
However, if your teeth have not been cleaned adequately to remove tartar, you may develop plaque below the gum line. Plaque may even push your gum line back, causing it to recede. Nearly half of all adult Americans suffer from gum disease, which can increase your risk of conditions like heart disease, stroke or diabetes. Removing all the plaque on your teeth, including the plaque found beneath the gum line, can help stop the progression of periodontal disease.
Deep cleaning is also called scaling and root planing. Scaling is the process of removing the plaque and tartar from the teeth and from the area between the teeth and gums. Your dental hygienist will perform this part of the deep clean using an ultrasonic scaler and/or manual scaling tools. Next comes a procedure called root planing, when the dental hygienist uses a scaling instrument to remove plaque and tartar from the tooth roots.
A standard dental cleaning procedure takes about an hour. It happens in one sitting, and when you’re done, you don’t have to return to the dentist for 6 months to one year.
A deep cleaning procedure takes at least two visits to the dentist, and once the procedure is finished, your dentist may schedule a follow up appointment to ensure that your gums are on track to return to good health.
Do You Really Need a Deep Cleaning?
During your next dental appointment, your dentist will measure the depth of the pockets between your tooth and the gum. It is in these pockets where bacteria forms. Healthy gums will have pockets no deeper than 3 mm. If the pockets between your teeth are measured at a depth between 4 and 6 mm, you’re a good candidate for a deep cleaning.
Other signs that you’re suffering from periodontal disease include:
- Red, swollen gums
- Bad breath
- Loose teeth
- Sensitive teeth
- Tender gums
- Receding gums
- Bleeding gums
If you have one or more of these symptoms, see your dentist as soon as possible.
Call Triangle Dentistry in Raleigh to Schedule an Appointment
Do you suspect you need a deep cleaning? Schedule a check up with your dentist as soon as possible. At Triangle Dentistry in Raleigh, we provide professional tooth cleaning services to patients and deep cleaning services to patients who need it. Call today to make an appointment.
Triangle Dentistry, located in Raleigh, NC, provides a state-of-the-art facility that offers exceptional general dental and specialty services guided by empathy of a patient’s needs and desires. Services range from dental crowns to veneers and whitening procedures. For further information, questions, or to schedule an appointment, contact the office at (919) 847-6000