Recommended Frequency of Dental Cleanings

Dentist CleaningAll parts of the human body work together to allow an individual to function as they should. When something goes wrong in any part of the body, this can affect other areas of your health.

Take dental health, for example. Poor dental health not only affects how you eat; it can also affect heart health, pregnancy and cause chronic inflammatory diseases.

It, therefore, helps to look at your health holistically and take care of all aspects of your health, including the often neglected ones.

One of the things you should do is ensure proper dental care. This includes brushing and flossing, and yes, getting your teeth professionally cleaned.

How Often Should I Get My Teeth Cleaned?

AppointmentsFor the longest time, the recommendation for teeth cleaning has been twice a year, that is, every six months. Recent research has shown that while this is necessary for some, it might not be necessary for each individual.

For some people, a once-a-year cleaning can be sufficient. This is, however, only acceptable for people with no underlying health conditions like diabetes and heart disease.

People with risk factors still have to follow a strict brushing and flossing schedule for a once-a-year cleaning to be adequate.

Besides underlying conditions, other lifestyle choices like smoking and genetics also play a role in dental health. For these reasons, it helps to see your dentist for an individual evaluation and determination.

Some of the factors they will look at include:

  • Is your toothpaste or drinking water fluoride-free?
  • Your diet, more so do you regularly consume sugary foods?
  • Do you negate flossing?
  • Do you brush less than twice daily?
  • Do you see the dentist for toothaches rather than routine checks?
  • Does your dentist always recommend new fillings each time you visit?
  • Do you have a lot of cavities ‘under watch’?
  • Do you wear dentures or braces?
  • Do you suffer from dry mouth?

If you answer yes to most of these questions, your dentist will probably need to see you every six months or even more often.

What To Expect

Granted, most people do not like the idea of having to see a dentist. For some, knowing what to expect can help them manage their anxiety a bit better.

There are two types of cleaning; routine cleaning and deep cleaning.

Routine cleaning will take about 30 minutes, is fairly painless, and does not require much aftercare.

Your dentist can recommend a deep cleaning if they find that you need more extensive cleaning. As such, a deep cleaning involved scaling and root planning. This involves cleaning pockets of tartar and plaque that can form on the gums and the surface of the teeth.

A deep cleaning will often require more than one appointment, and your dentist might apply some anesthesia before the procedure. He might also prescribe pain meds and antibiotics to manage any pain and sensitivity and to ensure you heal as you should.

In between cleanings, ensure to brush twice every day, floss, use a good mouthwash and eat healthy meals.