Proper oral homecare is essential to maintain the health of your smile, teeth, gums and bone that supports your teeth. Brushing your teeth removes the layer of dental plaque, bacteria and salivary proteins that accumulates and adheres to your teeth. If not removed, this debris causes redness, bleeding, inflammation, and recession of your gums. The bone between the teeth then shrinks away, creating “food traps”, or large triangular spaces between your teeth.
How to Properly Brush your Teeth
To help prevent this condition from worsening, 2 minutes of toothbrushing using a rotary, sonic or soft manual toothbrush should be done after every meal or at least twice a day, in the morning and at night. Concentrate your brushing on the inner surfaces of your teeth, especially where the plaque hardens into calculus the most: on the inside of your lower front teeth. If you already have bone loss and receding gums, then brushing too hard on the outer surfaces can abrade cementum on exposed root surfaces, leading to notching and increased sensitivity. These recessions can be measured and monitored, filled in or desensitized at your upcoming dental appointment.
How to Properly Floss your Teeth
Flossing is equally important as it accesses the triangular spaces between the teeth that your toothbrush is unable to reach. Gums sometimes bleed when you first begin to floss, but this inflammation/bleeding diminishes as the gums heal and toughen up (unless there is hardened-on calculus that your floss cannot remove, in which case you need a professional teeth cleaning with sonic or hand scalers to remove the calculus so that the gums can heal).
To properly floss: carefully insert the floss between two teeth, then bring the floss to the gum line and gently tuck it under the gums, curve the floss around the edge of your tooth in the shape of the letter “C” and slide it up and down the side of each tooth. Repeat this process between all your teeth, and remember to floss the backsides of your back teeth.
How often should I get my teeth cleaned?
If your teeth have an average amount of plaque or calculus buildup, minimal gum recession (pockets <3mm) and mild staining then a professional teeth cleaning is recommended every 6 months. If your teeth have more than average plaque or calculus buildup, moderate or severe gum recession and bone loss (>3mm pockets) and obvious staining then the standard of care recommendation for a professional teeth cleaning is every 3-4 months. Please phone us at 780-665-4833 to schedule your preventive hygiene maintenance appointment for whichever time interval is right for you.
How much does a teeth cleaning cost?
The range of cost for a professional teeth cleaning varies according to how many “units of scaling”, which removes the bulk of debris — either by ultrasonic or hand scalers, you need. In addition to scaling, you may choose to have your teeth polished with a rotary handpiece, and fluoride varnish or topical desensitizing agents applied. Each procedure has a code with a fee associated with it, please phone 780-665-4833 for a complimentary estimate based on your individual needs.
What could happen if I don’t get my teeth cleaned?
If you choose not to clean your teeth then stains, bacteria, plaque and calculus will accumulate. The debris depositing under the gumline will cause the gums to recede and the roots of teeth to be exposed, leading to dental sensitivity. Eventually as the gums and bone recede your teeth will start to loosen, shift, and appear to have black triangular spaces between them. There is a correlation between the bacterial deposits in the mouth and the blockages that form in hardening of the arteries, so it’s not “just a teeth cleaning” but a detoxification of your mouth. To prevent this progression of disease, please phone 780-665-4833 to schedule your preventive teeth cleaning today.