Scaling/ Tooth Polishing
Tooth Polishing is the act of smoothing the tooth surface. The purpose of polishing is to make it difficult for plaque to accumulate on the tooth surface area. Common practice is to use a prophy cup (a small motorized cup) along with an abrasive polishing compound.
Tooth Scaling is a process by which plaque and calculus are removed from both supragingival and subgingival tooth surface.
The scale and polish are very effective in preventing teeth and gum problems from even starting, since the scaling and polishing makes the teeth surfaces extremely smooth, in the process making it difficult for food debris and plaque to stick to the surfaces and cause tooth decay or gum diseases.
Need for Dental Scaling and Polishing
Dental scaling and polishing is important to ensure that the plaque and tartar that may have built up on the surface of teeth over time are removed thoroughly. The teeth are continuously exposed to saliva, which has calcium that helps strengthen teeth; however, the calcium can also build up as deposits on the surface of the teeth. These calcium deposits, when left to build up and combined with food debris that are not removed through tooth brushing, can cause bacteria to multiply, and may lead to tooth decay and gum diseases.
Dental Scaling and Polishing Procedure:
- The dental scaling may start with the dentist using an ultrasonic instrument that sends out vibrations to loosen any large pieces of tartar. The device can spray a cooling mist to wash away the tartar particles, and also to add to the patient’s comfort.
- Fine-hand tools, such as curettes and scalers, will then be used to remove the smaller deposits of tartar, and also to make the surfaces of the teeth smoother.
- Dental polishing is done with a dental polisher and prophylaxis paste; the paste has a gritty consistency that makes it easier to polish the teeth surfaces, making them smooth and shiny.