Having a routine dental cleaning twice a year is an essential part of keeping teeth and gums healthy. During a cleaning, tartar is removed from the patient's teeth, and that helps to prevent tooth decay. The removal of tartar also improves the appearance of the person's teeth.
Tartar is the calcified plaque that hardens when left on tooth surfaces for prolonged periods. It is the perfect haven for acid-producing bacteria that live in people's mouth. It cannot be removed by brushing and flossing, only a professional dental cleaning performed by a dentist can get rid of it.
While cleanings are one of the least invasive procedures performed by dentists, many feel apprehensive when it is time to get their teeth cleaned. Some would blame the fact teeth, and gums tend to be sore and sensitive for a few days after the cleaning is performed.
Tips to make dental cleanings more comfortable
Here are some tips patients can use to make their next dental cleaning a more comfortable experience:
1. Communicate clearly with the dentist
It is imperative that patients and their oral professionals be on the same page before and during dental cleanings. Patients should communicate any fears they are having with the dentist, as well as any underlying issue they think might complicate the procedure. For example, having sensitive teeth.
2. Take pain medication
There is nothing wrong with taking an over the counter pain killer before going in for a dental cleaning. This preventative measure helps to reduce the inflammation that is typically associated with this treatment. The medication in some pain relievers can also keep patients more relaxed during their treatment.
3. Teeth should be cleaned regularly
The more often a patient's teeth are cleaned, the less likely the dentist needs to remove tartar buildup aggressively. The longer a patient puts off dental cleanings, the more tartar, and discoloration that builds upon the person's teeth. That means more work for the dentist to do when the patient finally goes in for a cleaning. You teeth are gums will feel a lot healthier once this tartar has been removed.
4. Ask for a numbing gel
There are a variety of numbing gels that dentists can use to make cleanings more comfortable during treatments. Some topical anesthesia goes a long way during dental cleanings. Patients that deal with dental anxiety can also ask for sedatives like nitrous oxide to keep them relaxed during their procedures. This fast-acting gas is administered with a gas mask that covers the patient's nose. Its effects can be felt within minutes, and it wears off just as fast. That means patients sedated with nitrous oxide are free to drive home afterward.
5. Use a desensitizing toothpaste
There are many kinds of toothpaste that help to desensitize the teeth and gums. These can come in handy when a person is due for a cleaning. Use these before and after treatments to make the recovery period more enjoyable.
Our office is trained to make dental cleanings pleasant
Want to learn more about making dental cleanings as enjoyable as possible? Contact one of our dentists today!
For more information or to schedule an appointment with San Marcos Family Dentistry Dr. Gene Milligan, request an appointment in our San Marcos dental office here: https://sanmarcosfamilydentistry.com. Or call us at (512) 392-6739.
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