Regular brushing of your teeth is the best way to prevent gingivitis and periodontal disease. However, sometimes regular brushing at home is not enough, especially for those who are already suffering from some kind of gum disease.
What is Gum Disease? How Do I Treat It?
Up to 80% of Americans are afflicted by some form of gum disease, often without even knowing. Gum disease can start off painless without symptoms, but the risks can be severe. Loss of teeth, receding gum tissue, abscesses, and even septicemia could all result from an untreated gum problem.
The best way to ensure that your teeth and gums stay healthy is through regular cleaning at home, supplemented by prophylaxis cleaning treatments with a dentist or professional oral hygienist.
About Prophylaxis - The Professional Teeth Cleaning Process
A prophylaxis is the medical term given to professional teeth cleaning. There are some differences in how you clean your teeth at home, and how a professional will do it. Dentists use advanced methods to remove plaque and tartar buildup, while also ensuring there are no leftover food particles in gum pockets. Professional cleaning of this kind can stop the progression of gingivitis and periodontal disease.
Even with regular brushing, plaque builds up between teeth and around the gums. Over time, plaque turns to tartar, which is the mineralized state of plaque. This tartar is what can lead to serious problems, and the only effective way to remove it is through prophylaxis.
The professionals at Mark S. Frey DDS dental office in Santa Rosa use a method that includes scaling, cleaning, and polishing to ensure that teeth and gums are in their healthiest state.
Having prophylaxis teeth cleaning performed by your dentist will provide you with a number of benefits:
- Plaque is removed more efficiently, and more completely than when brushing at home.
- Tartar (also known as calculus) on the teeth and below the gum line is removed.
- During prophylaxis the dentist will be able to assess your teeth and gum condition, and spot problem areas to recommend early treatment. This is essential to fighting gum disease and maintaining dental health.
- Your smile will be whiter and healthier after prophylaxis. Even without cosmetic whitening, the prophylaxis teeth cleaning will reduce stains and discoloration, improving the aesthetic of your teeth.
- Your breath will be fresher as more plaque and residual food particles are removed from within, and around the gum line.
Fighting Bad Breath - The Effective Way
Halitosis is a common condition that causes bad breath in a number of our patients. Mouthwash and regular teeth cleaning is not enough to fight halitosis, because the problem often lies below the gum line. Prophylaxis can reduce this embarrassing condition as it removes food particles from around the teeth, and within gum pockets. This is not only important to improve breath but can help prevent the spread of gum disease, and even gangrene within the mouth.
Prophylaxis is a preventative or symptomatic treatment. Most gum disease can never be truly reversed, but the chances of developing it can be reduced through proper oral hygiene, including regular teeth cleaning. Even in patients where gum disease is already present, it will help to stop the disease in its tracks, giving you a healthier mouth and saving your teeth from the worst case scenario.
Get Proper Treatment For Your Teeth - Contact Us Today
Patients with healthy teeth and gums are recommended teeth cleaning twice per year to reduce the risk of gum disease, while those suffering from gingivitis or periodontal disease may have cleaning treatments as often as every four months to prevent worsening conditions.
Whatever condition your teeth and gums are in, Dr. Frey would love to get them as healthy as possible, and looking better than ever before. Talk to us for any of your dental needs.