Do I Really Need a Deep Teeth Cleaning?
We know this happens. We have a patient come in for teeth cleaning and exam. During the exam, we tell him or her, we would recommend that our hygienist do what is knows as a deep teeth cleaning on you instead of a regular cleaning. This takes longer, is more expensive and is usually done in more than one appointment. The patients leaves our office and the first thing they do is Google, “Do I really need a deep teeth cleaning?
For these patients patients, we have recommended a deep teeth cleaning because they are showing signs of gum disease. It is difficult because gum disease is often not especially painful, so patients are not aware they have it. If you get this diagnosis, you are not alone. Over 64 million adults in the US have gum disease.
Patients are often unaware that they have gum disease because symptoms may not be noticeable to them until more advanced stages. However, some common symptoms include:
- Swollen, red, tender gums
- Gums that have pulled away from the teeth
- Bleeding while brushing, flossing or eating certain foods
- Persistent bad breath
Sure My Gums Are Sore Sometimes, Why Should I Care?
Periodontal (gum) disease is a major cause of tooth loss. It starts with plaque build up. If not removed plaque will mineralize and form calculus (tarter). Calculus causes gum disease, bone loss.
If left untreated, the bone will continue to be lost which causes your teeth to loosen and fall out. Fortunately, you can significantly reduce the chance of this happening with regular dental cleanings and exams, along with good home care habits.
Many medical studies have shown a connection between oral and overall health. Harmful oral bacteria has been linked to heart disease. Research has shown that people with serious gum (periodontal) disease are almost twice as likely to have heart disease.
Gum Bacteria Selectively Disarms the Immune System
The bacteria that causes gum disease has access to your blood stream 24/7. Your body’s immune system will constantly be engaged as it attempts to fight bacteria and infection in your mouth. Your immune systems is not designed for this.
This can create a chronic situation that weakens the immune system and makes your body more susceptible to other conditions. Many studies are now showing significant links between gum disease and diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, premature birth and dementia.
The Difference Between a Deep Teeth Cleaning and a Regular Cleaning
It is not at all uncommon for our patients to ask us, “Do I really need a deep teeth cleaning?” We are very careful to only recommend it to patients we have diagnosed gum problems serious enough to warrant a deep cleaning.
The good news is that by getting a deep cleaning and then following that up with a renewed commitment to great home care of your teeth, gum disease is reversible.
At Family & Implant Dentistry of Colorado, we strongly emphasize preventative care for all our patients. If you take steps to address tooth and gum issues in their early stages, you can minimize the need for more extensive and costly dental work down the road.
We are also committed to never over treat our patients, so rest assured that if we recommend you have a deep teeth cleaning, we are confident in our experienced and professional opinion that you do truly need it. Once you have it done, you will be glad because your teeth and gums will be on their way to looking and feeling much better.