Oral hygiene is very important to keep your teeth healthy and clean.
As part of your initial examination, and subsequent routine six monthly check-up, you will usually require a professional cleaning done by the dentist or the hygienist. This professional cleaning is where we do the scaling and polishing.
What is scaling?
Scaling is part of the professional cleaning procedure, and is required when calculus has formed on the gum margins of the teeth. Calculus is best defined as calcified and hardened plaque. Calculus usually accumulates on the tongue side of the lower front incisor teeth and the cheek side of the upper back molar teeth. It is not easily removed by brushing your teeth, so the scaling procedure is often the best way to get rid of accumulated calculus.
If you have read the information on Plaque and Calculus, you will remember that calculus:
- is calcified/hardened plaque
- sticks to the teeth, and is not readily removed by brushing your teeth
- almost always accumulates on the tongue side of the lower front incisor teeth, and the cheek side of the upper back molar teeth.
- can accumulate under the gums
- can accumulate if not removed regularly
The use of an ultrasonic scaler is normally required to remove calculus. This usually involves a lot of water, and a very high-pitched noise which causes the calculus to detach from the tooth. Hand scalers can also be used to scrape the calculus off in harder to reach places.
When you haven’t had scaling done in a long time, the first cleaning session may take longer than normal, and will feel very different after the treatment. Sometimes, there may be an increase in sensitivity to the teeth for a while. We advise using sensitive toothpaste while it remains uncomfortable.
The benefits of scaling – done during dental check-ups
- Scaling can help eliminate bad breath – a build-up of tartar on your teeth and gums can often cause bad breath. Scaling can remove this build-up of tartar and eliminate the bad breath associated with it.
- Scaling can help improve the condition for your heart – there are a number of studies been done on the relation between a person’s oral and overall health.
- Oral diseases such as, gingivitis and gum disease, can affect your cardiovascular functioning.
- As mentioned, scaling can help remove the build-up of tartar (could lead to gingivitis and gum disease if not cleared out). Therefore, having scaling done during your regular dental check-ups could decrease your risk of problems associated with the functioning of your heart.
Complications associated with teeth scaling
- Teeth scaling that is not done adequately could loosen teeth.
- Teeth scaling that is not done appropriately could cause gum disease or periodontal diseases, which are painless but progressive.
- Teeth scaling can make the gums swollen and tender and also raise the sensitivity of the teeth to cold and hot food.
- Inadequate scaling may also cause bleeding of the gums.
This procedure is a bit more comfortable than scaling. The aim of polishing is to remove any further remaining plaque and to remove a certain amount of staining. The polishing action acts very similarly to an electric toothbrush (which is why we recommend them).
What is polishing?
Polishing is performed as part of a professional teeth cleaning procedure. It is conducted in order to remove any remaining plaque after scaling. It can also be done to remove some staining. The action of polishing is very similar to the way an electric toothbrush works. Pumice or polishing paste is usually used together with a brush or rubber cup.
The benefits associated with the Teeth Polishing Procedure
- Teeth polishing can prevent cavities – Polishing your teeth on a regular basis can get rid of the excess plaque build-up on your teeth and prevent tooth cavities.
- Polishing can help stop tooth loss – You can reduce the chances of tooth loss through regular dental check-ups, good oral hygiene and polishing.
- Teeth polishing can help with bad breath – Tooth polishing can be a great way to keep your breath odour free and healthy.
- Teeth polishing can help brighten your smile – Regular dental tooth polishing can remove built up stains accumulated from food and beverages and can brighten your smile.
Scaling and Polish Sunnybank Hills
Come visit us at Aperture Dental for a consultation or for more information on scaling and polishing, please give us a call on (07) 3188 9477.