Prophylaxis (Teeth Cleaning)
Prophylaxis is a dental cleaning procedure that cleans teeth thoroughly. It is helpful at halting the onset of gingivitis and periodontal infections that occur when bacteria colonies on gum tissue and below the gum line cause gum irritation and inflammation. As a result, gum and bone tissue are destroyed systematically causing teeth to shift, lose stability or fall out. Moreover, the pockets between teeth and gums become deeper and accommodate bacteria that travels to the body through the blood to infect other parts.
Reasons for Prophylaxis
Tartar removal: tartar and plaque accumulation above and below the gum line causes serious periodontal problems. Regular flossing and brushing cannot remove bacteria, debris or tartar deposits in gum pockets. A Lake Elsinore dentist will use special equipment to spot and clean tartar and plaque build-up.
Aesthetic: prophylaxis is effective at eliminating unsightly teeth stains in a bid to restore beautiful smiles.
Fresher breath: periodontal disease causes bad breath due to combination of rotten food particles and gum infections. Prophylaxis improves breath by getting rid of calculus, plaque and bacteria.
Identification of health issues: prophylaxis entails undergoing a thorough oral cavity examination. Therefore, the dentist will screen for oral cancer, spot oral signs of medical conditions like kidney problems and diabetes and evaluate the possibility of developing periodontal infections.
What Prophylaxis Entails
Based on a patient’s preference, prophylaxis is performed under general anaesthesia or during a regular dental check-up. However, general anaesthesia is required in cases where the dentist suspects severe periodontal infections. In such a case, the lung are protected from the harmful bacteria by placing an endotracheal tube in the throat. Prophylaxis has several stages;
Supragingival cleaning: the dentist uses scaling tools to clean above the gum line and get rid of calculus and plaque.
Subgingival cleaning: this is an important step among patients with periodontal infections because it focuses on removing calculus beneath the gum line and in the gum pockets.
Root planning: this is tooth root smoothing that eliminates remaining bacteria.
Medication: an antimicrobial or antibiotic cream is placed in gum pockets after scaling and root planning. They ease discomfort and ensure faster and healthy gum healing.
X-ray and examination: dental x-rays can be quite revealing especially during a periodontal disease examination. They show the extent of gum and bone recession to aid dentists determine the best treatment methods and identify areas that require special attention.
It is advisable to have prophylaxis at least twice annually. However, people suffering from periodontal infections should undergo professional teeth cleaning every 3 months. If you have further questions, do not hesitate to contact Lake Elsinore’s Dr.KalEissa, DDS.