Prophylaxis is designed to preserve health and prevent the spread of disease. The purpose of polishing tooth surfaces is to make these surfaces smooth and make it more difficult for plaque and debris to accumulate on your teeth and cause decay or gum disease. Dental polishing, or prophylaxis, is rarely done during the first appointment, due to dental plan restrictions, and is only done if a clinical exam is completed by Dr. Vincas Sidrys or Dr. Matthew Garcia and there is no presence of gum disease. If you have questions about your cleaning, give Willowdaile Cosmetic and Family a call at 919-479-5800.

Professional polishing removes plaque, tartar and stains from the teeth. Polishing is a cosmetic procedure that removes surface stains on the crown part of the tooth, above the gum line, so the teeth will look and feel cleaner. However, this procedure does not clean infected, diseased gum tissue and root surfaces. This is only a superficial cleaning and will not eliminate gum disease or get it under control.

This cleaning may be done by our dentists, dental hygienist or another licensed professional. This professional performs the polishing in the dental office and provides information on the proper care of your teeth and gums. Polishing’s main purpose is to improve the appearance of your teeth by making them look cleaner and brighter. Since this is a preventive procedure, it is completed only if the teeth are free from calcified plaque buildup and the gum tissue is healthy.

Many people think of a dental polishing as the dental equivalent of car waxing. The combination of a prophylactic cleaning and a routine examination is the first-line defense against catastrophic dental problems.

At your dental cleaning in Durham, North Carolina, our office will complete the following:

  • Assessment of mouth cleanliness.
  • Vital signs: blood pressure, pulse rate and respiration rate as needed.
  • Evaluation of your dental history and medical history and home care routine.
  • Nutrition counseling.
  • Tongue scraping to de-plaque your tongue.
  • Shade recording of your teeth using a shade guide.
  • Scaling of teeth to remove all plaque, stains and tartar on the tooth surfaces above the gum line. Scaling is performed by using an ultrasonic instrument to remove non-calcified plaque and tartar from the teeth.
  • Use of disclosing solution to reveal areas in need of special attention.
  • Polishing teeth to remove all surface stains.
  • Polishing of porcelain crowns, veneers and silver restorations.
  • Flossing of your teeth along with education on importance of flossing and its effect on your total well-being.
  • Evaluation of your gum tissue.
  • Application of fluoride as needed.
  • Treatment planning.
  • Biting, chewing and swallowing patterns check.
  • Referral to specialists as needed.