A dental prophylaxis is a professional cleaning procedure to thoroughly clean the teeth. It is important for halting the progression of periodontal disease that occurs when bacteria from plaque colonize on the gum/gingival tissue, above and/or below the gum line. A dental cleaning typically includes a dental exam and the following treatments:
- Removal of plaque: A sticky, almost invisible film of food debris and saliva that forms on the teeth, generating a growing colony of living bacteria that produce toxins (poisons) that inflame and infect the gums – the beginning of periodontal disease!
- Removal/Scaling of calculus (tartar): Hardened plaque that can only be removed with special dental instruments.
- Teeth polishing: Removes stain and plaque that is not otherwise removed during tooth brushing and scaling. Smooths away rough surfaces, making it harder for plaque and bacteria to stick to the teeth.