Dental Cleaning and Checkup
Dental Cleaning and Checkup in Rocky Mountain House
Local General Dentist in Rocky Mountain House, AB
Why Are Dental Exams and Cleaning So Important For Your Health?
There’s a way to make trips to the dentist completely painless and easy - this can be done by going to the dentist before a problem occurs. When you book a hygiene appointment at our clinic, we take every measure to keep your oral health well-maintained. Regular checkups and cleanings also help us spot potential problems early on and treat any issues before they can result in large or expensive procedures.
When you come in for your exam, we’ll have you sign in with the front desk, typically 10-15 minutes before your appointment. One of our friendly hygienists will retrieve you from the waiting room when we’re ready to get started.
Once you’re all settled in, our hygienist will get to work on your exam. They will check your mouth internally and externally for any abnormalities, as well as assess your level of risk for developing any oral health issues. Your jaw, neck, and teeth are all crucial points that will be examined to determine the state of your overall oral health and to predict any future problems.
While brushing and flossing your teeth can help to prevent plaque build-up at home, it’s still necessary to have your teeth cleaned professionally twice per year. Only your dentist has the proper tools and experience to remove hardened plaque and effectively prevent cavities and decay.
Your dental hygienist will carefully use a scaler to get rid of the plaque that’s gathered on your teeth and around your gum line. They will typically use a small mirror to guide them and make sure they’re reaching every spot. The amount of time this takes depends on how much plaque build-up you have. If you visit the dentist very frequently, they may not have much to clean.
Your hygienist will then use floss to get in-between your teeth. They’ll be able to expertly remove any plaque or build-up, and identify any problem areas in your gums.
A topical fluoride treatment is then used to finish the process. Fluoride helps prevent cavities and tooth decay and should be left to sit on the surface of your teeth for at least thirty minutes after your appointment. This means no food or water for about half an hour after your cleaning.
Preventative dentistry is exactly what it sounds like - taking great care of your teeth so you don’t run into problems later! This is done by keeping a consistent schedule of biannual cleanings so your teeth and gums are kept healthy.
These preventative measures will help to protect you from things like tooth decay, enamel wear, gum disease, tooth loss, halitosis, and more. While most people should visit the dentist every six months for a check-up and cleaning, some patients may require more care based on their dental health.
A big part of effective preventative dentistry takes place in your own home. Here’s how you can protect your teeth and gums out of the dentist’s chair:
Brush Your Teeth Twice a Day
Drink Lots of Water, and Less Sugary Drinks
Preventative dentistry protects your overall health, too. Maintaining healthy teeth and gums can lower your risk of developing health issues such as heart disease, osteoporosis, diabetes, and forms of respiratory disease.
Fluoride has so many benefits that protect your teeth, keep them healthy and help your smile thrive.
Preventing Tooth Decay
A huge reason your dentist uses fluoride treatment is to fight off cavities. When fluoride is used topically on your teeth, you’ll see a variety of benefits that will appear in the form of stronger teeth, fewer cavities, and the reversal of early tooth decay. Less or zero tooth decay means a healthier, stronger smile, and improved long-term health!
How Fluoride Works
The main goal of fluoride treatment is to protect your teeth. Your mouth has a natural mineralization and demineralization process that it goes through, and fluoride works with this process to keep your teeth healthy.
The demineralization process involves bacteria in your mouth feeding off of any carbs and sugars that are stuck to your teeth. This bacteria can also come from any untreated plaque that’s built up on your teeth. This bacteria produces saliva that breaks down your enamel due to its high acidity levels. When fluoride treatment is used, it helps to do damage control during the demineralization process to make sure your teeth are protected from harsh levels of acidity and excessive wear on your enamel.
Next is the remineralization process. While during demineralization your saliva can become very acidic, there are also times when it is less acidic, and the minerals in your saliva need to be replenished. Fluoride does this by adding the necessary minerals back to balance everything out. This can include necessary things like phosphate and calcium that help to maintain your oral health.
When fluoride is consistently used, it will naturally bond with the calcium and phosphate in your enamel to form something called fluorapatite. This is a very strong material that forms an outer layer on your teeth. This barrier is very instrumental in both tooth decay and cavity prevention.
There are two ways to distribute fluoride - one of the methods is to do so topically. This is done both at home during your personal oral hygiene routine, and at your biannual dental appointments!
You may not realize it, but every time you brush your teeth or use your favourite mouthwash, you’re giving yourself a topical fluoride treatment. This is because all of your oral hygiene products contain trace amounts of fluoride, which helps with cavity prevention.
Our dentists will also provide you with fluoride treatments during your appointments. These treatments can come in the following forms:
Some of these probably sound familiar to you! They typically don’t take more than a couple of minutes and are a great way to finish your cleaning and lock in another great method of cavity protection.
These treatments do contain a lot more fluoride than is found in your chosen mouthwash and toothpaste, helping to get results in a very short period of time. In order to secure the best results, you should avoid eating or drinking anything for a minimum of 30 minutes after your fluoride treatment has been applied.
The second way to distribute fluoride is systemic. This means that the fluoride is ingested, rather than just being applied topically to the teeth.
Many communities decide to fluoridate the drinking water to ensure everyone is receiving the proper amount. This means there are trace amounts of fluoride in all the tap water you can access at home.
Once fluoride has been ingested, it is absorbed into the gastrointestinal tract, and then distributed to the rest of your body through your blood. From here it can reach developing teeth to provide a topical layer of protection.
Communities with fluoridated water have less reported tooth decay and cavities in both children and adults.