Most people know something about gingivitis, but don’t know what it means exactly. Prophylactic teeth cleaning is usually required by patients diagnosed with an inflammation of the gums, that we usually refer to as gingivitis.
You may suspect you have gingivitis based on symptoms such as itchy, swollen, shiny, bright red gums, and general soreness in the mouth. Also, if you bleed when brushing or flossing, and have bad breath, these could be a sign of gum inflammation.
Gingivitis usually starts with poor brushing technique and is caused by plaque and tarter build up. Plaque is a yellow film formed by bacteria that failed to be removed while brushing. If you allow plaque to form, it will eventually turn into tarter by mixing with saliva and hardening. Poor brushing causes plaque, plaque causes tartar, and tartar causes gingivitis.
Gingivitis itself can be a sign of periodontal disease that eventually leads to bone and tooth loss.
The best idea is to treat gingivitis a.s.a.p. using prophylactic teeth cleaning. Later, you can keep it under control and prevent it from re-occurring by means of proper oral hygiene at home.
Dental Cleaning Procedure
Normally done during one single visit to the dentist, prophylactic dental cleaning is a multi-step process:
- Step one. Your dentist will perform a general cleaning of your mouth, that can be done either manually or with a cavitron (an ultra sonic instrument), or even both: these techniques help loosen and eventually remove both plaque and tarter build up.
- Step two. Your dentist will brush your teeth with a rotary machine very similar to a toothbrush with toothpaste on it. This way, any remaining plaque under the gums should be removed. The rotary machine also polishes the surface of your teeth discouraging further plaque build up.
- The third step is flossing until no plaque remains between your teeth.