Dental hygiene in Daly City starts with a professional cleaning
Less than 67 percent of Californians have had a professional dental cleaning in the past year, according to a report by the Kaiser Family Foundation.
With the onslaught of over-the-counter teeth whiteners and cleaning products, many consumers may be given a false sense that these items can deliver the same caliber of dental hygiene afforded by a professional dental cleaning.
The prime culprit for tooth decay and gum disease is plaque, a bacteria-laden film that accumulates on our teeth as soon as we eat or drink and hardens into yellow tartar in as little as 48 hours. Plaque and tartar canâ€™t be removed by standard at-home dental care, which is why dentists such as Dr. Leo Arellano recommend a professional dental cleaning 2 to 4 times a year.
A professional teeth cleaning will take approximately 45 minutes, longer if you have not had regular cleanings or have substantial tartar buildup. The teeth are cleared of tartar and given a thorough polishing, topped by an intense fluoride treatment as needed. It is usually pain-free, however if you have any tooth sensitivities please share this information with your hygienist before they begin. They can take measures to minimize any discomfort and evaluate the cause of your sensitivity.
At Leo Arellano, DDS, General and Cosmetic Dentistry, your cleaning is performed by a licensed dental hygienist. Dental hygienists complete special schooling and are required to pass state and national board testing to receive their license. They must also complete annual continuing education credits to maintain their license.
Your teeth will be cleaned of tartar and rinsed using a water spray. Tobacco, tea, and coffee stains can often be removed or substantially lightened by this cleaning. The hygienist may also screen for periodontal disease by measuring the space between each of your teeth and the surrounding gum line using a probe-like instrument to measure these small pockets. A fluoride treatment may be applied to give teeth an extra buffer of protection.
During the cleaning, the dental hygienist is also scouting for more severe oral disorders such as tooth decay, mouth or tongue cancers, broken fillings, and bite issues.