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The Cleaning Techniques of Dental Hygienists

December 9, 2013 General, Health Care 0 Comments

The Cleaning Techniques of Dental Hygienists Having a clean and healthy smile can make a person feel great and confident about him- or herself. While many fear a visit to the dentist, it is important that a dental cleaning is scheduled once in every six months to ensure good oral hygiene. Though regular brushing and flossing help reduce the buildup of plaque, it is very difficult to remove all bacteria and plaque buildup by just brushing.  Most dentists and dental hygienists suggest regular dental cleaning appointments that also give them the opportunity to evaluate one’s current oral practices. They can also suggest ways to improve oral health and diagnose and prevent any gum diseases.

Scaling

Scaling is used to remove tartar deposits that have built up over time on the teeth. Scaling is a rather painless and quick procedure wherein the dental hygienist uses simple hand instruments or specialized ultrasonic instruments to remove the tartar.

A dental hygienist uses various hand held instruments with curved tips in different shapes and sizes to slowly scrape out the smaller deposits above and below the gums. The tips of hand held instruments are finer and allow access to hard to reach spots.

Ultrasonic instruments, on the other, hand use tickling vibrations to knock out larger pieces of tartar. Since they have metal tips that tend to get hot when in use, a water spray is used to keep the mouth cool. The cool mist also helps wash out the debris.

Polishing

Once scaling is done, a dental hygienist uses a soft rubber cup attached to a slow speed hand piece to polish the smooth tartar and plaque free teeth. Prophylaxis – a special paste – is scooped into the rubber cup and the hand piece is activated and slowly spun around the teeth to make them bright and shiny.

Fluoride

The final step of a dental cleaning session is fluoride treatment. Flavored fluoride gel available in many flavors is placed into a styrofoam tray and brought in contact with the teeth for 30 seconds. The patient is then asked to spit out into a saliva ejector or suction is used. Patients are also advised to avoid consumption of food or water for 30 minutes following the session. The fluoride helps strengthen the tooth enamel and prevents decay.

This is relatively a painless procedure but can cause odd zingy sensations. Patients are advised to let the dental hygienist know if they are facing way too much discomfort.

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