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Regular Cleanings vs. Deep Cleanings – What’s the Difference & What’s Right for Me?

A routine teeth cleaning and a “deep cleaning” may sound similar, but these are actually very different dental treatments. Routine teeth cleanings are recommended for all patients at Eastside Family Dentistry, while deep cleanings are only required for patients who have gum disease.

Want more information about each procedure? In this blog post, we’ll break down the differences and discuss each treatment in more detail. Read on and learn with us! 

Regular Teeth Cleanings Are Recommended for All Patients at Our Office

This treatment goes by many names, including “routine cleanings,” “prophylactic cleanings” or just “teeth cleanings.” But these all refer to the same basic process, which is part of every routine six-month visit at dental offices like Eastside Family Dentistry.

To begin your teeth cleaning, your hygienist may take x-rays if you’re a new patient or it’s been more than a year since your last set of x-rays. Then, they’ll clean your teeth with special tools to remove plaque and tartar, buff and polish them with a gritty toothpaste, and floss to remove any remaining particles and debris from between your teeth.

When your cleaning is complete, your dentist will examine your mouth and discuss your oral health with you. 

Regular teeth cleanings are meant to help control the buildup of plaque and tartar, to keep your teeth shiny and bright, and to clean your mouth as much as possible before your oral exam so that your dentist can get a better understanding of your oral health. 

Deep Cleanings Are Only Recommended for Patients With Gum Disease

Deep cleanings are also called “scaling & root planing.” This is a much different treatment than a routine teeth cleaning. Scaling & root planing is only required if you have gum disease. 

This treatment is intended to remove most of the bacteria from between your teeth and gums, and is usually the first step a dentist will take when treating gum disease. One half of your mouth is cleaned at each appointment, so it will take 2 appointments over a few weeks to complete the procedure.

In a deep cleaning, your dentist will begin by numbing your mouth. Then, they’ll use special periodontal tools to clean between your teeth and gums, removing bacteria-filled tartar and plaque. Once this is done, your dentist will also smooth out the roots of your teeth. This helps prevent bacteria from collecting between your teeth and gums in the future.

When your procedure is over, you’ll be sent home to rest and recover. You also may get prescription antibiotics or a special mouth rinse that you’ll need to use to help control and eliminate bacteria in your mouth. 

Need a Regular Cleaning or Deep Cleaning? We’re Here for You!

At Eastside Family Dentistry, we’re always here for your dental needs in Issaquah. Dr. Alexandra Cristescu offers general and preventive dentistry including six-month cleanings and oral exams, as well as expert periodontal care. Our team is here to help you get the treatment you need to maintain your oral health. Contact us online or give us a call at (425) 391-9200 to schedule an appointment and get started today.

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