Scaling & Polishing
If you consult any dentist, you will find that they will recommend that you have your teeth cleaned professionally every six months or so. However, the fact that this means having to visit the dentist and paying them for the service often makes some people sceptical, thinking that it is just a ploy to encourage people to keep spending money on the dentists. However, the truth of the matter is that there has been a lot of research into this, and it has been found that visiting the dentist on a regular basis is actually a good idea. In order to get a sense of why this is so, one only needs to think about the way dirt accumulates within the teeth on a regular basis.
Brushing your teeth normally is not enough to keep your teeth clean
Most people imagine that simply brushing your teeth is a good way to keep them thoroughly clean. Of course, doing so is mandatory if you are to have fresh breath and avoid some of the consequences of poor oral hygiene such as the presence of plaques. However, even if you brush your teeth properly and according to the prescribed schedule (a minimum of twice a day), not all the dirt will be gotten rid if.
Some of the food matter tends to stick on the teeth just below the gum line, an area where toothbrushes normally don’t reach. With time, this plaque can accumulate, and then start being a colony for bacteria. The bacteria act to break down some of the food particles in the plaque, leading to formation of bad breath. In addition to that, they might also release chemicals that eat into the tooth and result in the formation of plaques.
The long term effects of brushing only
This means that if you depend on brushing your teeth as the sole method of keeping your oral hygiene in good condition, you still have a chance of getting bad breath as well as the presence of plaques in your teeth. This can be very frustrating, particularly for people who have been doing this properly and regularly and still end up having to get fillings and extractions. The trick to avoiding this is by remembering that there is still some dirt beneath the gum that has to be reduced professionally. Fortunately, this type of plaque tends to accumulate very slowly particularly if you brush your teeth regularly. This is why doing the scaling and polishing only twice a year is enough to keep it at bay.
What if the scale is allowed to proliferate?
If the scale in the teeth is not removed on a regular basis, it will accumulate and lead to other problems. The most common of these is an infection of the gums. Remember, the plaque is home to a large number of bacteria, and these can then damage the root of the teeth as well as the tissue in the gums. This means that after some time, it will lead to problems such as bleeding when you try to brush your teeth, as well as having your teeth fall off prematurely.
The cost implications
Most people avoid doing scaling and polishing on a regular basis on the pretext that it is too expensive. However, you should keep in mind that the complications of letting the plaque grow include having severe gum disease as well as having some of your teeth fall out. The remedy to such conditions might include placement of implants. When you compare the cost of getting simple scaling and polishing once every six months to the cost of caring for the consequences of plaque proliferation, it will be very easy to see that regular scaling is way cheaper even if you do it from a tender age. If you are looking to save money, you should therefore consider using this option. The fact that it comes with other benefits such as fresher breath means that it’s well worth it.
What is the procedure like?
Scaling and polishing is a process that will not take more than half an hour, particularly if you do it regularly and are not a regular smoker. Essentially, a machine that generates high frequency sound waves is used to dislodge the plaque from the teeth, reducing the risk to the other tissues such as in the gum. This device is usually directed to the area just under the gum, making sure that all of the plaque is removed even if it’s not apparently visible.
Once this is done, the polishing process is commenced. This involves using an abrasive to smoothen the surfaces of the teeth to ensure that there is low risk of any plaque sticking to the teeth. This means that at your next visit, you will have a much lower amount of plaque in your teeth.