Young woman is getting treatment in dentist's office

Why You Need To Get Your Teeth Cleaned Regularly

Regular teeth cleanings are vital not just to the health of your mouth, but to your overall health. You can certainly maintain good dental hygiene with regular brushing and flossing, but that can only go so far. To prevent decay and ensure your mouth is perfectly healthy, you’ll still need regular cleanings.

Read More: Maintaining Your Teeth as You Age

What Are Teeth Cleanings?

Teeth cleanings are the majority of what happens at the dentist. It’s when your dental hygienist uses their tools to scrape any plaque and tartar off your teeth that you may have missed in your regular daily brushing and flossing.

What Does the Process Entail?

Before beginning the actual cleaning process, your dentist will first take X-rays if needed to check for cavities or any irregularities. Then they will check your gums to see how healthy they are and if you have signs of gum disease. Healthy gums are shallow while those with gum disease will present deeper.

They will also examine your tongue, throat, head and neck for any irregularities that could be signs of cancer. Finally, they will examine your teeth for plaque and tartar, and begin the cleaning process, which involves using a scaling device to remove any buildup from your teeth.

Read More: How to Choose a Family Dentist

Benefits of Regular Teeth Cleanings

Whiter Smile

Everyone wants a whiter smile, but that’s going to be hard to maintain if you avoid regular teeth cleanings. Yellowing naturally occurs because of some of the foods we eat, and while brushing helps, it doesn’t take care of staining the way regular cleanings can.

Dentists have access to the tools that get to the root of staining and help reverse yellowing. They can also provide you with a professional whitening treatment if you’re looking to go even brighter.

Oral Cancer Screening

Dentists are the ones who screen for oral cancer, through x-rays and visual exams. At minimum you should be screened for oral cancer every two years, once a year is idea.

Spotting Issues Early On

Your dentist can see issues your teeth may be susceptible to before you can, since they’re trained to spot problems early.

While everything may seem fine, if you do have a lingering issue like a potential cavity, your dentist can point it out early on before it actually becomes a cavity, and offer preventative treatment to stop it before it becomes a more serious (and expensive) issue.

Prevent Tooth Decay

Tooth decay is never fun—and while it starts with your at home dental care, the big work happens at the dentist. If you are brushing regularly but have issues getting into tight spots or at the back of your teeth, you might not even know it is becoming an issue.

Your dentist can not only spot it but teach you how to reach those areas more efficiently, and clean them up for you before it creates further issues.

Better Breath

No one wants to find out they have bad breath, and the best way to prevent it is with regular teeth cleanings. Bad breath is caused by plaque and buildup in your mouth, so having your hygienist remove it regularly ensures your mouth is squeaky clean, leaving no room for bad breath to survive.

Prevent Gum Disease

As with all dental issues, prevention is the key. Gum disease not only affects the health of your mouth, but your entire body. It can negatively impact your overall health, contributing to heart disease, diabetes and stroke by allowing bacteria to enter your bloodstream through bleeding gums.

Read More: How to Spot the Early Signs of Gum Disease

It can also eventually lead to tooth and bone loss, but luckily, it is easy to treat and reverse with good dental cleanings.

How Often Do You Need to Have Your Teeth Cleaned?

It is ideal to have your teeth cleaned every six months if that is feasible for your budget. If you are prone to dental issue–it is vital to keep up with these regular cleanings to ensure you keep your teeth in good shape long term. If your teeth are quite healthy and your dentist is happy with your home hygiene habits, they may recommend cleanings every nine months or yearly.

Read More: Common Myths Surrounding Oral Health

With all this in mind, it’s easy to see why regular cleanings are so important. Home hygiene will always be the largest part of your dental routine, but it’s in person cleanings with your hygienist that go deep enough to prevent problems before they start, and treat issues when they do pop up.

Without regular dental cleanings, you could be missing vital issues in your oral and overall health. Take a minute to schedule your appointment today.

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