Dental Cleaning in West Seattle
West Seattle Family Dentistry
The most important part of dental care is keeping the teeth and gums (gingiva) clean and healthy. Simply put, if we don't have healthy gums, then we won't have healthy teeth...if we have teeth at all.
Professional dental cleanings (dental prophylaxis) are usually performed by Registered Dental Hygienists. Your cleaning appointment will include a dental exam and the following:
- Removal of calculus (tartar): Calculus is hardened plaque that has been left on the tooth for some time and is now firmly attached to the tooth surface. Calculus forms above and below the gum line and can only be removed with special dental instruments.
- Removal of plaque: Plaque is a sticky, almost invisible film that forms on the teeth. It is a growing colony of living bacteria, food debris, and saliva. The bacteria produce toxins (poisons) that inflame the gums. This inflammation is the start of periodontal disease!
- Teeth polishing: Remove stain and plaque that is not otherwise removed during tooth brushing and scaling.
Periodontal disease consists of localized bacterial infections in your gums and the loss of supporting bone around existing teeth. It is caused by many factors, including tartar and plaque buildup, nutrition, medications, heredity and your own resistance level to the disease. We do know that it is primarily a painless disease that, if left untreated, will probably result in the loss of your teeth. The disease attacks by dissolving the supporting bone around your teeth. The teeth can become loose and eventually fall out.
Your West Seattle Family Dentistry Hygienist will be thoroughly cleaning and smoothing your teeth and roots underneath the gums where the disease is active. A local anesthetic will be used to achieve this goal, but we emphasize this is NOT surgery; your gums will not be cut. The Hygienist will flush the gums with peroxide to help eliminate any bacteria left after scaling and root planning. By combining both the deep periodontal scaling and good home care, we can predictably shrink the periodontal pockets.
Other cleaning & prevention services: