Dread Dental Cleanings? Here’s An Easy Fix.

Posted on May 30, 2014 by William J. Claiborne, DDS MS

Being in the dental field, it’s not unusual to hear, “I hate going to the dentist,” or “I’d rather (insert various phrases) than go to the dentist.” Yet, there ARE those who actually enjoy having their teeth cleaned and their smile brightened every six months!

If you dread dental cleanings, it’s likely because it’s uncomfortable. The reason it’s not comfortable is probably because (drum roll) you don’t floss on a daily basis.

Daily flossers remove bits and particles between teeth before they begin to breed bacteria. As these particles rot, bacteria accumulate and form a sticky substance known as plaque. When plaque is not sufficiently removed on a daily basis, it hardens into tartar that the Hygienist has to scrape away during your cleaning.

Oral bacteria not only eat away at tooth surfaces (causing cavities), they attack gum tissues, which causes inflammation. This makes your gums tender and sore. When the hygienist scrapes tartar off teeth that are surrounded by inflammed gum tissue, it’s not going to be without sensations.

The good news is – you can prevent all of this in just two minutes a day! Commit to daily flossing for two weeks, which should be enough to get you comfortable and in the habit. Most daily flossers feel uneasy when they DON’T floss because a flossed mouth is a cleaner mouth.

If you need help, ask your Hygienist to work with you so flossing is easy and to ensure you are doing it effectively. Be sure to brush at least twice daily (for a minimum of 2 minutes each time) and use a tongue scraper to remove embedded bacteria from the tongue.

Your breath will be fresher, you’ll save time and money by avoiding dental repairs, and you will hopefully change your dread of dental visits to actually looking forward to 6-month cleanings!

If you are experiencing tender gums that bleed when you brush, you are in the initial stages of periodontal disease. This will only worsen without treatment. Call us at (704) 274-9440 for an appointment.

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