Elmhurst Family Dentist Explains Why Professional Dental Cleanings are Necessary for Patients of All

Written by Dr. Scharfenberg on Jun 25, 2012


Elmhurst Family Dentist Explains Why Professional Dental Cleanings are Necessary for Patients of All Ages

More patients than ever are exercising healthy dental hygiene habits at home. With a number of high-quality oral hygiene products available for at-home use, patients are able to help prevent dental decay and keep a sparkling a smile. However, too many patients now believe that at-home cleanings are all they need, and are consequently avoiding professional cleanings. The truth is that in order to maintain a healthy and sparkling smile through adulthood you need to partner diligent home care with professional dental cleanings.


We all know that dental cavities, gum disease, and oral infections are caused by bacteria in the mouth. Bacteria thrive and multiply due to plaque and tartar build-up. Plaque is the sticky bacterial film that accumulates on your teeth and gums throughout the day. Plaque eventually solidifies into a substance called tartar (also called calculus), which is mineralized and calcified on dental enamel. Bacteria attach to tartar and proliferate, leading to decay and infection.


At home you can brush and floss plaque away, which helps to prevent dental infections. Diligent daily care will help you keep a handle on plaque and tartar accumulation, however at-home care alone is not sufficient. This is because once plaque hardens into tartar; it can only be removed by a professional dental cleaning. Brushing and flossing are not strong and directed enough to remove calculus. Our Elmhurst family dentists can eliminate tartar build-up with professional tools and scaling and planing techniques.


In order to maximize the health and beauty of your smile you need to partner daily oral hygiene habits with semi-annual professional cleanings. Twice a year your dentist will be able to give you clean dental slate, which you should then try to maintain to the best of your ability at home. Additionally, your dentist will evaluate your mouth for signs of dangerous dental disease and oral cancer. Many of these signs and symptoms are not readily apparent or visible to patients as they brush and floss. It is therefore of the utmost importance that you receive a professional screening.


Truly taking care of your teeth means recognizing that you simply can’t do it all. When you make your dentist your partner in dental care you’ll find that it is easier than ever to maintain a sparkling smile. Give our Elmhurst family dentists a call at (630) 733-1624 if you have any questions, as always we’re here to help!