Author: Dr. Gerald Regni

Dr Gerald Regni, DMD, has been practicing dentistry for over 30 years. He does general and cosmetic dentistry, but has a special interest and focus in biological and holistic dentistry. He can be contacted at: Dr. Gerald Regni, DMD 937 Christian St Philadelphia, PA 19147 (215) 351-9399

Dentist, What Happens During a Teeth Cleaning?

You’re probably wondering why you need to have your teeth cleaned by Dr. Gerald Regni, DMD when you can very well brush and floss your teeth yourself. Well, The American Dental Association will not recommend that you see your dentist for professional teeth cleaning unless they have specific reasons to justify this recommendation. Paying your dentist to have your teeth cleaned is not a waste of money. You have to understand that your oral care routine, albeit necessary, is not enough to remove plaque and tartar on your teeth and along the gumline. If these are left to accumulate your teeth and your gums will suffer.

Truth be told, many Americans dread the idea of visiting their dentist to have their teeth cleaned especially if their teeth and gums are in great shape. They dislike the discomfort of having different instruments inside their mouths and the loud and strange sounds of machines used to clean their teeth. But, if you really want to be cavity and gum disease-free, you need to do this little sacrifice at least once every 6 months to keep your oral health in tiptop shape. Here’s a brief overview of what happens when your dentist cleans your teeth.

Physical Exam

Every cleaning starts with a physical exam, which will be done by your dentist. A tiny mirror will be used to check all areas of your teeth for signs of gum infection, decay and cavities. A visual inspection of your mouth will alert your dentist if other treatments may be needed.

Removal of Plaque and Tartar

After doing a throughout visual inspection of your oral cavity your dentist will now start scraping off plaque and tartar from your teeth using a tool called a scaler. The scaler will move from one tooth to the next and in between your teeth to remove all traces of plaque and stubborn tartar. The amount of time your dentist spends on one tooth will depend on the accumulation of tartar in that area. The more plaque and tartar you have the more time they’ll need to remove it. Keep in mind that there are certain spots in your mouth that your toothbrush and floss won’t be able to reach. These are the areas were plaque and tartar are more likely to accumulate. You won’t be able to scrape off tartar with a toothbrush alone, which is why you’ll need the help of your dentist.

An Electric Toothbrush Will Be Used

After removing all traces of tartar your dentist will use an electric brush to do a deep clean of your teeth to make sure your mouth is completely 100% tartar free. You are going to hear a grinding and loud sound but don’t worry this step is completely painless. Your dentist will also use a special toothpaste that comes in a variety of flavors. If you get lucky, you’ll have the chance to choose a flavor you want. However, unlike regular toothpaste, this toothpaste has a grainy texture to scrub your enamel clean.

Professional Flossing

After your dentist is done brushing your teeth you’ll get to experience professional flossing. Your dentist will go deep in between your teeth to remove food debris and particles. This is also their opportunity to check for gum issues if your gums bleed when they floss.

Rinsing Your Mouth

After flossing, your dentist will ask you to rinse your mouth with a liquid that contains fluoride.

The Application of Fluoride

Last but not least, your dentist will apply a fluoride treatment on your teeth to protect it against cavities. This treatment will safeguard your teeth for months.


You have to understand that every step of the cleaning process is backed up by science and research making it an effective preventive measure that ensures you not only have a beautiful smile but a healthy one at that.

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