Most dental conditions are caused by plaque and bacteria buildup that is not properly cleaned. Frequent dental visits allow Abra Dental (formerly ChildSmiles•FamilySmiles)’s dentists and hygienists to address this buildup before it becomes problematic. If left untreated, gum disease and tooth decay can lead to pain, discomfort, and even tooth loss. The good news? Dental disease can be prevented through adequate home care and regular visits to Abra Dental!
However, even brushing, flossing, and rinsing diligently may not prevent plaque buildup in some hard-to-reach areas. When plaque and bacteria accumulate in these areas, they can mineralize and form a tough, calcified deposit called tartar. Tartar cannot be removed by brushing at home, but Abra Dental’s scaling and polishing procedures can treat tartar before it causes a problem!
Risks of Tartar Buildup
If your teeth are left untreated from plaque and tartar buildup, then your oral health may be negatively impacted. Bacteria is responsible for a range of health problems, and oral health is directly related to overall health. If plaque buildup occurs, then you may be at risk for:
- Gum disease
- Tooth decay
The best way to prevent oral-related health complications later in life is by taking an active role in healthy dental habits now.
What Does Scaling and Polishing Mean?
During the scaling stage of this dental treatment, your Abra Dental dentist or hygienist will remove the hardened deposits of plaque and tartar using a small instrument called a scaler. The scaler is a device that gently dislodges any hardened tartar from the gum line.
The polishing stage removes any plaque that remains on the surface of the tooth after scaling. Polishing may also remove stains on the teeth that result from food or beverages. It’s true that polishing can leave the teeth looking bright and shiny, but it’s not just a cosmetic procedure. Polishing can also smooth the enamel, which makes it harder for plaque to adhere to the tooth.
Benefits of Scaling and Polishing
Of course, both scaling and polishing removes plaque buildup, but it also has some other surprising benefits. Here are some of our favorite benefits of this essential oral health service:
- Removes plaque buildup
- Prevents cavities
- Prevents gum disease
- Smooths the enamel
- Provides an ideal surface for fluoride treatment
- Prevents plaque from sticking to the teeth
- Shines the teeth
- Brightens your smile
What to Expect During a Scaling and Polishing Service
During your or your child’s initial visit, one of Abra Dental’s dentists will examine the teeth for any signs of decay or gum disease. If any signs of plaque buildup are present, your provider will scale and polish the teeth thoroughly. They will then apply fluoride to provide an additional layer of protection. If there was a major buildup of plaque, one of our team members may speak with you or your child about the importance of oral healthcare and provide essential tips to help keep your smile healthy.
How Often Do Teeth Need to be Scaled and Polished?
Hopefully only once! Your Abra Dental dentist or oral hygienist will perform a scaling and polishing service as needed during your regular dental cleanings. If there are signs of tartar buildup, they may inform you during your visit and begin the cleaning process. Scaling and polishing are conducted on an as-needed basis. Our team is always happy to educate your entire family on ways to prevent plaque and tartar buildup so that you no longer need scaling and polishing services. With proper oral care, you may only need this service a few times in your life, though we hope once is more than enough!