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Even if you brush and floss more than the suggested amount, it is always a good idea to schedule and attend your 6-month dental appointments. During cleanings, your hygienist will typically do the following: First, they begin with Scaling. Scaling is the process in which plaque and tarter are removed from your teeth. If you are showing signs of early-onset gum disease, a nonsurgical periodontal procedure will be performed to clean the infected sites around the gum line. Once a year our hygienists always take x-rays to check in-between your teeth for cavities along with oral cancer screenings performed with Velscope. The final phase of cleaning is polishing your pearly whites to a beautiful brilliance by removing stains from your tooth’s surface. After your cleaning is completed, Dr. Reinhart or Dr. Moore will check your teeth for cavities, broken fillings, and the early onset of gum disease. Gum disease is an infection in the gum tissue that weakens the bone supporting a tooth’s structure. If detected early, gum disease can be treated, and its harmful effects may be reversed. However, if the process is further developed, gum surgery and tooth removal may be needed to stop the infection from spreading.

If you are to be considered a patient that is “high risk” for gum disease or oral cancer, we may schedule more frequent appointments to keep track of your smile’s condition. Those who use tobacco products, consume alcohol or have diabetes may fall under this category. Recent studies have shown that tobacco use may be one of the most significant risk factors in the development and progression of periodontal disease. Because of the chemicals found in cigarettes, smokers have a longer recovery from periodontal treatment and surgery. If left untreated, smoking will eventually cause your gum line to recede, which will allow bacteria to destroy tissue as well as the supporting bone. Without treatment, your teeth will become sensitive, painful and will eventually fall out.

Aside from periodontal disease, lack of proper oral cleaning can eventually lead to overall health complications. Poor oral hygiene can lead to severe medical conditions such as heart disease and strokes. Your routine appointments may prevent these life threating occurrences from happening! If you are concerned about your smile, or are in need of a 6-month checkup, call the office of Midway Family Dentistry & Cosmetic today!

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