When it comes to deep cleaning vs. regular dental cleaning, many people may mistakenly believe that deep cleaning is simply better. The truth is, however, that there is a more significant difference between deep cleaning teeth and the regular dental cleanings we are all used to. They’re not the same, and it’s not an “either-or” situation.

Regular dental cleanings are about preserving your teeth and beautifying your smile, but deep cleaning is literally deeper than that.

The Difference in Deep Cleaning vs. Regular Dental Cleaning

A deep dental cleaning is about clearing bacteria out of the roots of your teeth below the gumline. The goal is to treat gum disease. It is known as a periodontal procedure.

A regular dental cleaning or prophy focuses on the outer surfaces of the teeth above the gumline. The goal is to prevent gum disease and tooth decay, as well as beauty your smile. It is a preventative procedure.

Everyone needs regular dental cleanings, and most of us are very familiar with the process. However, only people who have gum disease or other significant dental issues need deep cleanings.

The word “cleaning” in reference to a deep cleaning can be misleading. It’s more about “clearing” bacterial deposits out from under the gums. In fact, the more formal term is “periodontal scaling and root planing.”

Many people have gum disease and do not know it, which is why it’s important to see Dr. Fienman regularly for routine cleanings and check-ups. When you come in, we can identify any periodontal concerns you may have.

In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control, 47.2 percent of adults ages 30 and older have some form of periodontal disease. In its early stages, gum disease is known as gingivitis, but it can progress to periodontitis if it is not addressed early enough.

The CDC also reports that periodontal disease increases with age. More than 70 percent of adults 65 and older have periodontal disease.

Unfortunately, periodontitis is a chronic infection. It occurs when bacteria collects in pockets and spaces below the gumline and around plaque that has built up on your teeth. This can lead to the deterioration of bone tissue, leading to bone loss and progress further to  tooth loss. Deep cleaning aims to preserve what you have and  prevent further damage.

Deep cleaning clears debris out from under your gums.

What Happens During a Deep Dental Cleaning

During a deep cleaning the hygienist will focus on removing the accumulated biofilm of bacteria that is contributing to the disease process.  She will use a wide variety of instruments to clean under the gumline.  The procedure can be more uncomfortable than a standard dental cleaning.  But don’t worry we routinely use a specialized topical anesthetic to keep our patients comfortable.  Also, while a routine cleaning is completed in one visit, a deep cleaning is usually completed in two visits.

A deep cleaning is also only the beginning of your road back to a healthy mouth.  It clears the field so that the brushing and flossing you do every day at home can keep the disease from progressing. 

After this initial therapy for periodontal disease is completed there is typically a follow up visit a few weeks later to check healing.  After that you should be seen every 3-4 months for maintenance visits.  These frequent cleanings and checkups will help keep the gum disease in check and avoid the need for another deep cleaning procedure.

Contact Our West Bloomfield Dental Team

For more information about any of these processes or to make an appointment with Dr. Fienman, call our West Bloomfield dental office or send us a message through our website.

Remember that proper oral hygiene is critical to keeping your teeth and gums healthy for a lifetime, and we are here to help you do just that.