What Happens During a Teeth Cleaning?

June 11, 2019 Grandville Dental Health Center

Teeth Cleanings Dentists GrandvilleThe American Dental Association (ADA) and our Grandville dentists recommend that you receive regular teeth cleanings every six months in order to stay on top of your oral health.

At Grandville Dental Health Center, we don’t just remove plaque at these appointments: we also take steps to make sure that you’re on the right path for your oral health.

Here’s what our dentists will do when you come in for your teeth cleaning appointment.

What Happens at a Dental Cleaning?

There is nothing to be afraid of at a routine visit. All our dentists and hygienists want to do is make sure your smile is healthy. We’ll accomplish this by removing plaque and tartar and addressing any arising dental issues.

During your teeth cleaning appointment with us, we will:

  1. Confirm contact information
  2. Check for changes in medical history and dental insurance
  3. Have one of our dental hygienists examine your teeth and gums
  4. Gently scrape away plaque and tartar
  5. Brush teeth with high-powered electric toothbrush
  6. Floss teeth
  7. Have our dentists examine your teeth, gums, and potentially x-rays
  8. Schedule your next teeth cleaning appointment 6 months out

Before Your Appointment

When you come to our office, make your way to the front desk so we’re aware you’ve arrived. Our front desk staff may ask you to confirm your phone number and address to ensure that we have your most current contact information on file. We may also ask you if there have been any changes to your medical history or dental insurance since your last visit with us.

While you wait for your appointment, you can pass the time away by reading our selection of magazines. When the time for your appointment arrives, one of our dental hygienists will call your name and you will follow them to the room where you will receive your teeth cleaning.

The 6 Stages of a Teeth Cleaning Are:

1. Dental Exam

Once you are situated in the chair, one of our hygienists will do an initial examination of your teeth and gums to gauge their health. A small mirror will be used at this time to check every nook and cranny of your mouth. If they notice a major issue, such as signs of oral cancer, they may flag down our dentists to determine if you need additional dental care before proceeding.

2. Plaque Removal

Next, our hygienist will use a dental tool called a scaler to gently scrape away plaque from the surface of your teeth. This step is important because plaque can develop into tartar, which is harder to remove.

Plaque is a sticky film of bacteria that forms on your teeth and gums, potentially causing bad breath, yellow teeth, gum disease, and tooth decay. Removing built-up plaque and tartar is your best defense against future cavities. Aren’t a huge fan of the scraping noises during this stage? Brush your teeth as thoroughly as you can to reduce plaque buildup.

3. Teeth Brushing

Our hygienist will ask you what flavor of toothpaste you prefer before brushing your teeth. We use a special high-powered electric toothbrush that helps remove any remaining debris from the previous plaque and tartar removal phase. You will find that the toothpaste has a gritty texture, which is meant to polish your teeth.

4. Flossing

To ensure that all debris is cleared from your smile, our hygienist will floss between your teeth. They’ll get deep between your teeth and can tell you whether you need to floss more based on bleeding spots that occur at the gums.

Flossing is also a great habit to start if you haven’t been doing it already. We recommend that you floss at least once a day to maintain a healthy smile and prevent gum disease.

5. Rinsing

If you’re at the rinsing phase, you’re almost done with your teeth cleaning appointment! After the hygienist rinses your teeth and gums, just sit tight until our dentists come to do the final inspection of your gums and teeth.

6. Final Exam

Our dentists come in at the tail end of your visit and will provide that last stamp of approval before we send you on your way. They will use their knowledge and experience to check your mouth for any issues. If an oral health concern was discovered during the course of your teeth cleaning, our dentists will further explain the issue and discuss possible solutions.

Your Next Appointment

After your teeth cleaning, you will be prompted to schedule your next appointment with us, which will be 6 months out. It is important to schedule your appointment not a day earlier than this 6-month mark so that your insurance company will cover your future dental cleaning.

Keep Your Smile Clean With Regular Cleanings

Our dentists in Grandville, MI, know that healthy teeth are a result of consistent oral hygiene habits. We’re always happy to answer any questions you might have about how to take care of your pearly whites. To make an appointment, call Grandville Dental Health Center at (616) 531-0360.

This blog has been updated.

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