Answers to Your Common Questions

What’s a dental cleaning?

A dental cleaning, also known as prophylaxis, is the professional cleaning of your teeth to remove harmful plaque and tartar (calcified plaque). Once plaque hardens into tartar, you’ll need professional cleaning to remove it. As a product of oral bacteria, the biofilms are the building blocks of conditions like tooth decay and gum disease. Preventive dental cleanings (at least once every six months) are paramount to preventing such conditions.

What’s scaling and root planing?

When oral bacteria get under your gum line and settle on your teeth roots, prophylaxis won’t be enough to clean them away. Scaling and root planing is the process of carefully accessing and cleaning your teeth roots to remove plaque and tartar, which can help you mitigate and possibly reverse the symptoms of gingivitis. If you hesitate to treat it, gingivitis can quickly progress into more serious gum disease and heightened risks of tooth loss.

How do I fix a tooth?

If a tooth becomes worn down or damaged, then fixing it as soon as possible will be vital to saving it. We offer a variety of custom dental restorations to address all manner of tooth damage, or to replace a lost tooth in severe cases. Like tooth decay and gum disease, damage to your tooth is progressive and will grow more serious over time. If not restored in a timely fashion, you could risk more severe tooth damage and possibly tooth loss.

How can I prevent tooth loss?

There are many potential causes of tooth loss, the most common of which is gum disease. The most effective way to prevent tooth loss is to recognize your specific risk factors and address them with help from your dentist. For example, if you exhibit early signs of gingivitis – the first stage of gum disease – then you should schedule a scaling and root planing appointment as soon as possible to stop it from getting worse.

How can I improve my hygiene?

Preventive dental care is a team effort between you and your dentist, and you do most of the work yourself by sticking to a good dental hygiene routine at home. That includes brushing your teeth at least twice and flossing at least once every day, without fail. Pay close attention to your gum line when you brush, making sure to gently clean away bacteria and food particles that could lead to plaque development underneath your gums.

Learn more by calling us today

If you have any more questions, or would like to schedule a consultation with us, call Dimples Family Dentistry in Norwalk, IA, today at (515) 256-1176.