Oral health paves the way for enhanced physical well-being and improved facial aesthetics. Oral hygiene aids like brushing and flossing can help eliminate plaque and bacteria that are considered the main culprits of oral diseases. However, these may not be sufficient, requiring additional procedures like oral prophylaxis.
The facility for dental care in Hollywood, FL, offers comprehensive and compassionate oral prophylaxis procedures to prevent periodontal disease or halt the disease progression.
What does oral prophylaxis mean?
Oral prophylaxis or teeth cleaning is a routine dental procedure that aims to clean your teeth and the supporting gums. The main focus of this procedure is to eliminate the plaque and bacteria from above (supragingivally) and below (subgingivally) the gum line.
Plaque is a thin, sticky film that adheres to your teeth’s surfaces and creates a favorable environment for bacterial colonization. These microorganisms secrete harmful acids and toxins that lead to the demineralization of enamel and erosion of soft tissues surrounding the teeth. Severe inflammation leads to an inflammatory response in your body. The teeth lose their attachment and eventually become unstable or completely fall out.
What purpose does oral prophylaxis serve?
Prophylaxis is an excellent procedure to get rid of dental plaque and bacteria. It is performed for the following reasons:
- Calculus removal
- Calculus is the hardened form of plaque that gets deposited above and below the gum line.
- If left untreated, it can lead to periodontal diseases.
- For cosmetic concerns
- Tooth stains and discoloration can negatively impact your smile and facial aesthetics.
- To eliminate bad breath
- Periodontal diseases are most often accompanied by halitosis (bad breath) due to the rotting of the food particles subgingivally (below the gum line).
- Helps detect other health issues
- It is believed that most often, health problems first present themselves in the oral cavity, which can help healthcare professionals design an appropriate course of action.
What does oral prophylaxis involve?
- Supragingival cleaning: Involves plaque removal from above the gum line
- Subgingival cleaning: Plaque removal from the gum pockets and beneath the gum line.
- Root planing: Involves smoothening of the roots to eliminate residual bacteria.
- Antibiotic medications: These involve the placement of antibiotic or antimicrobial cream in the gum pockets to promote healing.
- X-ray and examination: A thorough dental exam and routine X-rays can help detect any early signs of oral diseases or halt their progression.
Oral prophylaxis has gained tremendous popularity in recent years due to the introduction of ultrasonic scaling instruments and other high-tech devices.