Even if you practice perfect dental hygiene by brushing twice a day and flossing religiously, you still shouldn’t skip getting professional teeth cleanings. These routine dental appointments should take place every six months and include:
- A visual exam of your gums, teeth, and tongue
- A comprehensive cleaning to remove plaque or tartar buildup
- X-rays of your jaw and teeth
At The Dental Touch in Oakland, California, our team relies on these preventive care appointments to identify potential oral health problems and address them before they progress.
Here’s how regular cleanings protect your dental health. They can:
Prevent tooth decay
Brushing and flossing alone can only remove so much plaque. You can’t always see it, but you can often feel its slippery or fuzzy coating on your teeth when you first wake up.
Unfortunately, this sticky, acidic film is the primary cause of tooth decay. And, when you let it build up on your teeth, it can erode the protective layer of enamel coating your tooth, leading to cavities, gingivitis, and other types of tooth decay.
Reduce your risk of tooth loss
When ignored, plaque and tartar buildup can penetrate underneath your gumline, putting you at risk of gum disease. This potentially serious dental problem means there’s an infection in the soft tissues of your mouth.
Nearly half of adults 30 or older have some form of gum disease, and these numbers jump to 70% for those 65 and older. Without treatment, gum disease destroys the bones supporting your teeth, increasing your chances of tooth loss.
Approximately 178 million Americans have at least one missing tooth, and 40 million have no natural teeth left at all.
Freshen your breath while brightening your smile
Even if you brush, floss, and use mouthwash, your teeth can still become stained over time from certain items, like coffee, tea, and red wine. Tiny food particles and plaque can also stay hidden in the nooks and crannies between your teeth, causing chronic bad breath.
Your professional teeth cleaning takes care of these troublesome stains and hidden particles by scrubbing and polishing them away, leaving you with brighter teeth and fresh breath.
Protect your whole body
If your oral health isn’t enough to get you in for your professional cleaning, do it for the rest of your body.
While plaque and tartar may seem like a problem that stays in your mouth, excess bacteria and inflammation doesn’t stay there. Instead, it enters your bloodstream and gets carried throughout your entire body, putting your entire health at risk.
Conditions associated with poor oral health include:
- Heart disease
- Endocarditis, or inflammation of the heart lining
- Premature birth or low birth weight
Having certain medical conditions can also put your oral health at risk, so it’s even more important to schedule professional cleanings if you have diseases like osteoporosis, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, or Alzheimer’s disease.
Don’t wait to take your first step toward great dental health. Contact our office to schedule your cleaning appointment by calling 510-324-9096 or booking an appointment online today.