When you book a cleaning appointment at your local dental clinic, much of the time that the dental hygienist spends with you will be devoted to removing plaque and tartar from your teeth to encourage good gum health. The dental hygienist will also floss your teeth thoroughly, as well as polish them with an electric polishing tool. This step typically comes toward the end of your appointment, but that doesn't minimize its value to you and to your smile. Here are three things that dental polishing accomplishes for you.
Over time, it's common for your teeth to get stained to some degree. You may notice staining if you're a heavy coffee drinker, for example. Even a diet high in dark-colored foods, such as blueberries and beets, can contribute to staining. Smoking or using chewing tobacco can also lead to stains on your teeth; the latter habit, especially, frequently causes stains to the lower teeth. When your dental hygienist polishes your teeth, you'll notice a considerable reduction in the stains that may be present on your teeth. This simple step in the cleaning process can thus make you much more eager to smile on an everyday basis.
When it comes to removing the tartar from your teeth, your dental hygienist will use a scaling tool, which has a sharp pick on the end, to lift this stubborn and hard material away from your tooth enamel. Depending on the severity of the tartar that has built up, your dental hygienist may also use an ultrasonic scaling tool to remove the tartar. However, some small pieces of tartar can occasionally remain behind, which is where the polishing process will come in handy. With the polishing tool, your hygienist will be able to remove any lingering bits of tartar.
While the goal of getting your teeth polished during your cleaning session isn't specifically to give you a whiter smile, you'll likely notice that your teeth are a few shades whiter by the end of the polishing. This can be a relief if you've found that your smile is a little more yellow than you'd like. If you've been thinking about getting your teeth professionally whitened, you may notice that the small amount of whitening that you've experienced from the polishing can make you happier with your smile — perhaps to the extent of holding off a formal whitening process for a while.
Contact a dentist, like Steven Abrams DMD, for more help.Share
4 January 2019
Being born with naturally soft teeth, I've spent a lot of time in and out of the dentist's office. Not only have I learned a lot about basic dental care, I've also discovered many tips for dealing with broken teeth, extractions, implants, and more. I decided that I wanted to make the most of my experience by sharing what I've learned with others. True first-hand experience is a great teacher, and I knew that my story could help. I created this site to do just that, and I hope that the information here helps you to understand what to expect from your dental problems.