What Is a Deep Dental Cleaning and Why Would I Need One?

How your dentist determines if you need deep cleaning, Stop gum disease before it progresses, What Is a Deep Dental Cleaning

You know that regularly scheduled professional dental cleanings remove plaque from your teeth and keep your mouth healthy, but are you aware of how you may benefit from a deep dental cleaning? Many people successfully maintain good oral hygiene and prevent tooth decay and gum disease with at-home brushing and flossing along with professional dental cleanings every six months, but others need a bit more professional attention.

At Joey Cazares, DDS and Associates, with convenient locations in McAllen, Mercedes, and Penitas, Texas, we recommend deep cleanings when your gum health is at risk of developing gingivitis and periodontal disease. We might also recommend a deep cleaning when it’s been more than six months since your last visit to the dentist.

When we perform an evaluation of your gums and determine that you need additional treatment for your best oral health, a deep dental cleaning can help you get back on track. Take a minute to learn exactly what’s entailed in a deep dental cleaning and why you might need one.

Deep cleaning removes plaque and tartar from below your gum line

A recent study in the Journal of the American Dental Association revealed that a deep dental cleaning, which includes scaling and root planing, is highly beneficial to people with chronic periodontitis. Periodontitis is a type of gum disease that has advanced beyond gingivitis and can cause serious oral health complications, like loose teeth and irreversible decay.

When you have plaque buildup on your teeth close to your gum line, this sticky film attracts bacteria and can cause your gums to become red and inflamed — the early signs of gum disease. When you don’t effectively remove this plaque through brushing and flossing, your gums can pull away from your teeth and form pockets where the plaque becomes trapped. Neither regular brushing nor a professional dental cleaning can remove this trapped plaque, and that’s where scaling and root planing comes in.

During a deep dental cleaning, Dr. Cazares removes the plaque and tartar (hardened plaque) below your gum line from the pockets that have formed. This is the scaling process of a deep dental cleaning. Once scaling is complete, root planing smoothes out the root of each tooth and helps your gums reattach to your teeth in the areas where they have receded.

Scaling and root planing may take more than one dental visit, and you might also need a local anesthetic, but this deep clean is a necessary measure that can alleviate dental problems and prevent gum disease from progressing, ultimately preserving your natural teeth.

How your dentist determines if you need deep cleaning

Not everyone needs a deep dental cleaning. When you come in for your checkup, your hygienist uses a probe to measure the area around your teeth to determine if your gums are forming pockets.

If the depth of your gum tissue between your teeth measures 5 millimeters or more, it’s considered a pocket. Ideally, you shouldn’t have any pockets of gum tissue more than 3 millimeters deep. If the pockets are more than 5 millimeters, Dr. Cazares may recommend a deep dental cleaning so he can remove the plaque and tartar and promote gum repair.

After a deep dental cleaning, Dr. Cazares may prescribe special cleaning instructions, such as using an electric toothbrush or a medicated mouth rinse to help your gums recover and return to optimal oral health.

Stop gum disease before it progresses

Chances are, if you have the early stages of gum disease, or gingivitis, you’re already experiencing some unpleasant symptoms like:

Nipping these symptoms in the bud means treating them early so you can prevent gum disease from progressing. A thorough deep dental cleaning can do just that.

If you’re experiencing any signs of gum disease, or if it’s been longer than a year since you’ve been to the dentist for a professional cleaning, call one of our offices today to schedule an appointment to find out if you’re in need of a deep cleaning.

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