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85 North Park Avenue Rockville Centre, NY 11570 516-763-4500 *Same Day Emergency Care

Teeth Cleaning

A professional dental cleaning is also called dental prophylaxis or a scale and polish. It is a gentle yet thorough procedure that cleans your teeth and gums, leaving you with that super-fresh, just been-to-the-dentist feeling.

Why Do I Need My Teeth Cleaned Professionally?

A soft, sticky biofilm called dental plaque builds up over your teeth and gums each day. Dental plaque contains bacteria, including some harmful strains. Most dental plaque is removed when you brush and floss your teeth thoroughly and regularly. But even the most diligent brusher and flosser will miss some dental plaque.

The Benefits of Having Your Teeth Cleaned Professionally

A professional teeth cleaning treatment removes all plaque and tartar thoroughly. Additionally, having your teeth cleaned professionally makes them look brighter and shinier than before. The process removes some surface stains, so your teeth may look slightly whiter. Getting rid of plaque and tartar buildup helps to freshen breath. Most importantly, a professional dental cleaning is an easy way to help maintain healthy teeth and gums, especially when combined with a good oral care routine at home.

If you leave plaque and tartar to continue building up, it can cause considerable problems for your dental health.

The Problem with Plaque and Calculus Build Up

Any plaque remaining on your teeth after brushing and flossing harden into calculus (tartar) within a couple of days. This hard crusty substance cannot be removed by brushing and flossing your teeth as it needs specialized tools and equipment to get rid of it safely and effectively. The presence of tartar makes it easier for more dental plaque to stick to your teeth. As the plaque and tartar build up, the harmful bacteria within these substances thrive on leftover food particles and produce weak acid and toxins.

The weak acid attacks tooth enamel, and repeated exposure to these acids eventually causes cavities to form in teeth. The toxins produced by bacteria infect your gums, and your body tries to fight the infection, causing inflammation that gradually destroys gums. Eventually, gums start to pull away from teeth creating pockets or gaps that harbor harmful bacteria, allowing these bacteria to thrive, causing a problem called gum disease or periodontal disease.

Success Stories

Super clean and very friendly

Super clean and very friendly dental office ! Nicollette was especially great. She provided a great teeth cleaning.

Victoria Pyzynski

How Frequently Should I Have My Teeth Cleaned Professionally?

Usually, most adults with reasonable dental health will need a dental prophylaxis every six months. However, people with existing gum disease or more at risk of developing dental problems may benefit from more frequent cleanings. We thoroughly review your dental health during your first comprehensive dental exam to determine how frequently you need dental prophylaxis.

What to Expect During a Teeth Cleaning Treatment?

Before we begin your teeth cleaning treatment, we will ask if you have noticed any changes to your dental health and will carefully check your mouth for any signs of issues that may require additional attention. We use ultrasonic tools to loosen tartar buildup before using hand tools to scale or scrape away the loosened debris carefully. Once all the plaque and tartar are removed, we use a special polishing paste to gently polish your teeth, smoothing your tooth surfaces to make it harder for plaque and tartar to adhere to them. Polishing your teeth can help remove stains and leave your teeth feeling ultra-fresh, smooth, and clean. Finally, we carefully floss between each tooth, ensuring all tartar is thoroughly removed.

Does Teeth Cleaning Hurt?

Teeth cleaning should not hurt, especially if you have reasonably strong and healthy teeth and gums. Some people with more sensitive teeth might find the process slightly uncomfortable. We can provide local anesthesia or use a numbing agent if this is the case.

After having your teeth cleaned professionally, you should not have any pain, although your teeth might feel slightly more sensitive when you brush and floss that night. This effect should only last a day or two at most, and your teeth and gums should feel perfectly normal soon afterward.

If you have signs of periodontal disease, your gums may feel more fragile and might bleed more easily, and could have receded, pulling away from your teeth and exposing your tooth roots. You may need a different form of teeth cleaning called deep teeth cleaning or scaling and root planing. Because this is a deep cleaning treatment, we may suggest using a local anesthetic to ensure you feel comfortable during the process. This process may need to be done over more than one appointment. Sometimes with advanced periodontal disease, a a referral to a gum specialist, or periodontist, may be necessary.

Ensuring You Have an Excellent Oral Care Routine

You may not realize that your teeth cleaning appointment is a great opportunity to get professional advice on improving your oral care routine at home. When you visit our practice, Dr. Adam Shoukry or another team member can review your oral care routine, ensuring you can maintain oral health more easily and effectively.

As children, we learn how to brush our teeth and often continue to use the same routine during adulthood. However, sometimes it can be useful to update your brushing routine, and this is where we can help you. We love educating patients and sharing knowledge, and sometimes making small changes can make a real difference to dental health. As we clean your teeth, we can note any areas that might benefit from a little extra care and can advise you on how to brush your teeth more thoroughly.

Our advice includes information about which toothbrush and toothpaste to use, and we can demonstrate different brushing techniques. We can discuss which manual or electric toothbrush to choose for optimal results at home.

Professional dental advice can be especially useful for anyone who struggles with flossing, and we know many people find this task tricky. Our dental team can demonstrate the correct way to floss and discuss which dental floss to use. Alternatively, we can discuss other tools that might be easier to use, such as interdental brushes and soft picks or a Waterpik. These tools can be extremely useful for anyone who finds it awkward to manipulate dental floss and who could have limited manual dexterity.