Professional cleanings performed by a certified dentist or hygienist are just as important to your dental health as daily brushing and flossing. Using specialized tools and training, your hygienist or dentist will:
Remove plaque build-up from the surfaces of teeth. (Bacteria in the mouth form plaque, which collects on teeth and causes decay, gum disease, and gingivitis.)
Remove tartar from teeth surfaces. (Tartar, or calculus, is plaque that has become so hardened on the teeth that its removal requires special procedures. Tartar below the gum line is also an indicator of gum disease.)
Remove surface stains from teeth through polishing.
Just a Cleaning
Examinations Regular examinations help detect and prevent health issues before they become serious. Consistent dental check-ups help catch problems when they are small and easier to treat. Left unattended, small treatable problems become worse and may require more extensive, expensive procedures to repair. Dental examinations generally include the following:
Gum Disease screening
Oral Cancer screening
Visual tooth decay evaluation
Visual gum disease examination
Gum pocket measurement and tracking
X-ray examination to detect: tooth decay, cysts, tumors, problems below the gums and other hidden issues
Oral Cancer Screening
Regular examinations are very important for your health. Remember, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." –Benjamin Franklin
Sealants Sealants are generally used to help prevent tooth decay on the biting surfaces of back teeth (molars). The natural grooves of these teeth can trap food that can resist casual brushing and rinsing. If left in place, the trapped food allows bacteria to multiply, eventually causing tooth decay and requiring costly attention.
Sealants are painted directly onto the tooth where they seal the natural grooves to help prevent tooth decay. While sealants are durable, they are not permanent. They can last up to 5 years of normal wear before needing replacement.
Video: What are dental sealants?
Sealants offer a cost-effective, preventative step to reduce the chances of tooth decay on the chewing surfaces of molars. However, they do not replace the need for regular brushing and flossing.
Mike Regan, DMD provides complimentary mouthguards for all physically active patients. When it comes to protecting your mouth, a mouthguard is an essential piece of athletic gear that should be part of your standard equipment from an early age. While collision and contact sports, such as boxing, are higher-risk sports for the mouth, you can experience a dental injury in non-contact activities too, such as gymnastics and skating.
A mouth guard does more than protect your teeth. While teeth are important, your mouth and jaws also needs to be protected. In the case of serious impact, your teeth could cause serious injuries of the jaw or soft tissue that could take weeks to heal, and even cause you to stop playing sports for a while.
If you take the time and effort required to have braces, you likely need a mouthguard if you participate in any type of sport. Almost any sport can put your mouth at risk for injury, including knocked out teeth or serious damage to the brackets of the braces. Rather than risking that type of damage, you can simply wear a custom fitted mouthguard that will give your mouth the ultimate protection.
Call us today at 503-654-8283 to schedule your next appointment and request your complimentary mouthguard so you can stay safe while playing the sports you love!
Prophy (Regular Cleanings) A prophy includes a series of procedures where plaque, calculus, and stain are removed from all surfaces of the teeth above the gumline. This is done with hand instruments, ultrasonic scalers, and coronal polishing. Only a licensed dental professional is qualified to determine the need for oral prophylaxis. Only a dentist, dental hygienist, and trained dental assistant can perform the procedure.
Periodontal Maintenance A periodontal maintenance procedure (PMP) is defined as a procedure that is recommended following periodontal treatment (such as scaling and root planing) and continues at varying intervals, determined by the clinical evaluation of the dentist.
These intervals can be as frequent as every two months and they can be extended as long as six months, depending on the patient. Keeping up you're your PMP interval is important because periodontal disease can recur without adequate follow up.
PMP includes removal of plaque and tartar above and below the gums, scaling and root planing of specific areas, and polishing. PMP is always completed following active periodontal treatment such as scaling and root planing or more extensive gum surgery.
Scaling and Root Planing Scaling and Root Planing is a special type of treatment that goes deeper below the gum line to remove contaminated debris and bacteria, most often performed on patients with active periodontitis.
This seems to be a procedure that causes so much confusion for patients in trying to understand the difference between a professional cleaning and Scaling and Root Planing, and the reasons for this procedure.
Scaling and Root Planing is done to remove soft sticky plaque and hard crusty calculus that is loaded with bacteria, around and below the gum line on root surfaces. A professional polishing or prophy removes only the soft sticky plaque and hard crusty calculus that is above the gum line on the crown of the tooth. It is a method of treating gum disease when pockets formed around the teeth have a measurement of greater than 3mm and there is evidence of bleeding and tissue attachment loss.
Scaling Scaling is a procedure that meticulously removes contaminated bio-film, plaque, calculus, micro-organisms, and toxins from around the gum line down to the bottom of each periodontal pocket in order to obtain a healing response.
Root Planing Root planing involves smoothing the root surfaces of your teeth with thin instruments so gum tissue can more firmly reattach to roots that are clean and smooth to prevent tooth loss and sensitivity problems. This procedure makes it more difficult for plaque, calculus, and bacteria to accumulate along these root surfaces.
Because this procedure goes deeper than a regular cleaning, your mouth may be numbed. The cleaning may take one to six visits to complete. Depending on the extent of the disease, you may need one or more quadrants of the mouth to be treated with scaling and root planing.
How you care for your teeth and gums at home after treatment is critical to reduce the risk of recurring periodontal disease.
Mike Regan, DMD, 6969 SE Lake Rd, Milwaukie, OR, 97267-2103 - Key Phrases: Family Dentistry Milwaukie OR;
Dental implants done right in one office;
Dentist Milwaukie OR;
503-654-8283; www.drmikeregan.com; 2/26/2018