Posts for tag: dental cleaning
When you floss (you do floss, right?), you probably notice a sticky, yellowish substance called plaque stuck to the thread. This thin film of tiny food particles and bacteria is the reason you floss and brush in the first place: Because it's the main trigger for tooth decay and gum disease, removing it decreases your risk for disease.
But this isn't the only form of plaque you should be concerned about. That same sticky substance can also interact with your saliva and harden into what's commonly known as tartar. Dentists, however, have a different term: They refer to these calcified deposits as calculus. And it's just as much a source of disease as its softer counterpart.
You might have noticed that this form of plaque has the same name as an advanced type of mathematics. Although dental calculus has little in common with algebra's cousin, both terms trace their origins back to the same linguistic source. The word “calculus” in Latin means “small stone;” it became associated with math because stone pebbles were once used by merchants long ago to calculate sales and trades.
The term became associated with the substance on your teeth because the hardened plaque deposits resemble tiny stones or minerals—and they can be “as hard as a rock” to remove. In fact, because they adhere so firmly it's virtually impossible to remove calculus deposits with brushing or flossing alone. To effectively eliminate calculus from tooth surfaces (including under the gum line) requires the skills and special dental tools of dentists or dental hygienists.
That's why we recommend a minimum of two dental cleanings a year to remove any calculus buildup, as well as any pre-calcified plaque you might have missed with daily hygiene. Reducing both plaque and calculus on your teeth fully minimizes your risk of dental disease. What's more, removing the yellowish substance may also brighten your smile.
That's not to say daily brushing and flossing aren't important. By removing the bulk of plaque buildup, you reduce the amount that eventually becomes calculus. In other words, it takes both a daily oral hygiene practice and regular dental visits to keep your teeth healthy and beautiful.
For many people, visiting the dentist is not the most exciting task in their agenda. However, routine visits are a vital part of keeping your smile clean, healthy, and beautiful for years to come. Do you know how often you should see your dentist? Find out more about routine dental examinations and cleanings and what makes them important to the health of your smile with Dr. Cesar Acosta in Turlock, CA.
What can I expect at a dental examination and cleaning?
Your visit will start off with your dentist visually examining the mouth and oral tissues to search for abnormalities or issues that may require dental procedures like fillings or root canals. If your dentist finds decay, they may suggest repairing the problem during your visit. If they find a more complex issue, they will ask you to schedule a separate appointment.
How often should I see my dentist?
The American Dental Association recommends seeing your dentist at least twice a year for routine dental examinations and cleanings. If you are particularly prone to teeth decay or other dental issues, your dentist may recommend more frequent visits. The ADA also has guidelines to keep your teeth healthy and clean between your visits with your dentist. These guidelines include brushing twice a day and flossing at least once. This daily routine coupled with your dental appointments will keep your teeth healthy for many years to come.
Routine Examinations and Cleanings in Turlock, CA
Seeing your dentist regularly allows them to find and treat issues like teeth decay early when a simple procedure like a filing can get the job done rather than a more invasive treatment like a root canal. Additionally, regular dental cleanings remove any evidence of plaque or tartar on the teeth, giving you a clean slate and stopping teeth decay and gum disease in its tracks.
For more information on routine dental visits, please contact Dr. Cesar Acosta in Turlock, CA. Call (209) 250-2560 to schedule your appointment with Dr. Acosta today!