How Often Should I Have a Dental Exam and Cleaning

How Often Should I Have a Dental Exam and Cleaning

Jan 01, 2023

Professional dental cleaning and oral examination are procedures that dental practitioners use to keep tooth decay and periodontal disease at bay. You can have your teeth cleaned and a comprehensive oral exam by visiting a dental hygienist or a dentist near you. According to The American Dental Association, you should visit your dentist’s office regularly for cleaning at least once every six months. However, if you are more predisposed to gum disease, the frequency of your visits should be higher. For example, people who smoke tobacco, have diabetes, or come from a family with a history of gum disease are more likely to develop gum disease.

The recommended visits to your dentist’s office allow the dental expert to check your oral cavity for signs of abnormalities that may indicate an oral problem, like gingivitis or dental cavities. When oral issues are identified early, they can be successfully corrected by dentists with simple dental procedures. If minor dental issues are not addressed on time, they are likely to progress and cause extensive damage to your dental structure, which may need more advanced procedures to correct. Advanced procedures pose higher complication risks and will make you dig deeper in your pockets to pay for the services.

What to Expect When Going for a Professional Teeth Cleaning

The dental cleaning procedure will likely vary slightly between different practitioners, but there are some basic steps they all relate to. Here is a summary of what to expect when you go for dental exams & cleanings in St Petersburg at our office dentist in 33702.


This step is also referred to as scaling and involves the removal of plaque and tartar you’re your teeth. Plaque is a sticky film that forms on teeth surfaces when the oral bacterial break down starchy or sugary foods trapped in teeth cusps and spaces. Regular brushing of teeth and flossing helps eliminate plaque, but some areas are hard to reach with your brush, and this is where plaque accumulates most. Plaque can result in dental cavities, gum disease, and tooth loss.

Your dental practitioner will use special equipment to scrape off plaque and clean the hard-to-reach areas in your mouth. Also, with the help of special flossing tools and techniques, the dentist will clean spaces between your teeth. A dental tool known as a Prophy-Jet is widely used for this procedure since it uses pressurized air, water, and abrasive powders to remove teeth stains, plaque, and soft debris. Your mouth is then rinsed out at the end. The cleaning process normally takes an hour or less.


Teeth polishing follows next. The dentist or hygienist will use dental paste and a tool with a rotating head to shine and polish your teeth until they are squeaky clean.

Fluoride treatment

Fluoride is a naturally-occurring mineral that strengthens teeth and helps prevent dental cavities. Fluoride treatment is helpful, especially for people at a higher risk of dental cavities, as it fights harmful oral bacteria that harm your teeth and gum tissue.

What to Expect During a Dental Exam

When you visit Dental Arts Ninth Street for an oral exam, Dr. Cecilia Sorelle, a dentist in St Petersburg, will closely observe your teeth one by one to ascertain for a fact that there are no abnormalities. A dental exam is done to help detect gum disease, oral cancer, tooth decay, and other dental health issues early when they can easily be treated. Oral exams will also involve educational talks on the best and most efficient ways to care for teeth and gums.
The dentist may also request dental x-rays, which provide detailed images of the health conditions of tissues beneath the gums. During the x-ray, your dentist will ask you to bite down on a small plastic piece that will take the images or may place a scanner outside the oral cavity and take the picture.

Benefits of Dental Exam and Cleaning

The following are the pros of regular dental exams and professional teeth cleaning:

  • Allows for early detection of oral health issues, which, if left to progress, may cause irreversible damage.
  • It promotes one’s overall health by preventing dental cavities, gum disease, and other oral problems. Your oral health and general body health are closely associated. For instance, poor oral hygiene results in a higher risk of cardiovascular diseases and diabetes.

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