A dental prophylaxis is a cleaning procedure to clean teeth and areas around the gums. It is an integral part of your routine maintenance program that is paramount in decay and gum disease prevention. Over time, buildup occurs around your teeth and gums. This buildup harbors bacteria that causes tooth decay and gum/periodontal disease. Regular cleanings remove this harmful buildup and is effective in maintaining good oral health.
Full benefits of regular dental prophylaxis includes:
- Disease prevention and management. Removal of tartar or plaque buildup helps to prevent cavities and treats gingivitis and periodontal disease.
- Better overall health. Research has shown an intimate connection between oral health and overall health. Poor oral health and periodontal disease has been linked to difficulty in controlling cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
- Early problem detection. Most prophylaxis procedures include an examination by our dentist. Regular dental examinations detect problems early and will help to keep necessary treatments more conservative.
- Healthier smile. As a part of the cleaning, your teeth will get polished. This can remove stains (like coffee and tea stains) on your teeth to give you a healthier looking smile. Polishing also smooth teeth surfaces to help deter future staining and plaque adhesion.
- Fresh breath. Buildup, leftover food debris, and gum disease causes bad breath or halitosis. A cleaning removes this source of bad breath and greatly improves issues of halitosis.
- Patient Education. At Battlefield Dental of Fredericksburg, we strongly believe the key to oral health is patient education. As important as your dental visits are, what you do away from our office is equally as important. We strive to educate our patients in the fundamentals of oral health and the oral disease process so you can be better informed on methods of improving homecare.
Periodontal Treatment - In certain instances where increased amounts of tartar or gum disease (periodontal disease) is present, a “regular” cleaning may not be enough. In these situations, a deep cleaning or scaling and root planning is needed to adequately clean the oral environment. A deep cleaning addresses greater amounts of buildup and tartar that occurs in deep gum pockets around teeth that is not accessible in a regular cleaning. Most often, local anesthetics are required to allow for comfortable access to rid deep pockets of disease causing buildup. Without appropriate debridement of this tartar and bacteria, the gum disease process will continue causing further bone loss/gum recession and increase the potential for loss of teeth from eroding bone support. Treatment of gum disease entails a periodontal maintenance program that requires patients to get cleanings at more frequent intervals. Depending on the stabilization level of the disease process, a 3 or 4 month cleaning regimen may be needed. If the disease is considered stable, the patients may return to a regular 6 month cycle of recalls.