The best way to keep your teeth and gums healthy is to establish good home-care habits like brushing and flossing every day. These will reduce your risk of developing cavities and gum disease. Keeping your mouth clean will prevent the growth of harmful bacteria that is responsible for plaque build-up, food impaction, and swollen or bleeding gums. At home-care is the first step in preventing dental problems, and the second is to come in for regular cleanings and check-ups.
During your check-up, Dr. Markle or Dr. Herman will perform the following exams:
Even if you have excellent dental hygiene habits, a professional cleaning will ensure that tartar is entirely removed from the tooth surfaces, especially along the gum line. Tartar easily builds up to form plaque, which is difficult to entirely remove at home, so it can build up in the 6 months between cleanings. If this tartar is allowed to accumulate over a long period of time, harmful bacteria will flourish and introduce the perfect circumstances for gum disease to develop. Tooth surfaces that are clean and smooth stops bacteria from developing.
One of our qualified dental hygienists performs dental cleaning by using specialized instruments that remove the tartar and plaque deposits from the tooth surfaces. Sometimes, to loosen larger pieces of tartar, we use an ultrasonic device and wash them away with water. Finer tools are used to scrape away any remaining debris, leaving a clean and smooth tooth surface. After this process, we'll floss, polish, and if necessary, apply fluoride to strengthen the enamel. The result is a bright, shiny, and most importantly, healthy smile.