How is Dental Cleaning and Plaque Related?

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Houston, Texas

A dental cleaning is part of healthy oral hygiene. It involves the removal of plaque and tartar deposits that build up on the surface of the teeth.

What is Dental Plaque?

Plaque is the sticky, bacteria-infested substance on your teeth, while the tartar deposits are the hard ones. Saliva has calcium and other elements that protect our teeth, but it can also add to the calcium build-up on the teeth.

The build-up of plaque causes tooth discoloration and bad breath, to name a few conditions. The purpose of scaling and polishing the teeth is to get rid of these build-ups. It cleans the surface of the teeth so that bacteria would not thrive in these places.

Although dental cleaning, or prophylaxis, is generally safe for everyone, gross negligence may lead to some mouth infections.

The primary tool to remove the tart from your teeth is an ultrasonic instrument that removes the plaque using vibrations.

Improperly Sanitized Instruments Can cause Infections

Devices that are not adequately disinfected or sterilized may cause an infection from a dental cleaning.

Always ensure that your dentist uses a new set of freshly sanitized and sterilized dental instruments to lessen the risks of getting an infection. More significant and harder deposits on the teeth are also harder to remove and may need additional time to remove these.

Some patients may also see some blood, mainly because of these hard deposits being close to the gums. While blood during dental prophylaxis is typically safe, it may cause an infection if not properly treated. Usually, dentists give their patients medicated mouthwashes to rinse to prevent infections.

NO, Infections Due to Cleaning are Rare!

Infections are quite rare when getting a dental cleaning, but not entirely impossible. If you have other problems with your teeth and gums, always tell your dentist before a dental cleaning session.

What Can Your Dental Hygienist Do For You?

Preventive dentistry pays steady dividends over time. When you commit to a simple preventive maintenance plan for your mouth, you boost your overall health to another level. Plus, you dramatically lower the risk of discomfort and unnecessary expense created by neglected dental problems.


Few healthcare relationships keep your health on track, like the partnership with your dental hygienist. Combining daily home care habits, including brushing and flossing, with one or two annual visits with your hygienist, will support your goals for wellness.

While all hygienists hold a license, we only hire the most exceptional providers to work on our team.

Our Hygienists Have Specialized Skills

With our focus on innovation, they stay updated on the latest equipment and materials used in our profession. They’re also committed to open communication with every patient, creating an environment that supports your efforts.

Quality Dental Prevention With Your Hygienist

At Midtown Dentistry, we emphasize the quality of communication between our office and you. Whether you’re interacting with our doctors, administrative team, or licensed hygienists, we’ll listen to your thoughts and concerns and develop care strategies together.

A skilled hygienist does more than remove harmful plaque and tartar from your teeth. As a healthcare professional, they examine your teeth for signs of unusual wear and visible cavities.

A Detailed Review of Your Gum Health

They also complete a detailed review of your gums and mouth tissue, including an oral cancer check.  Early detection of oral cancer is critical, and we’re trained to examine all mouth tissues for changes.

They Are Your Wellness Coach

A committed hygienist helps coach your home care habits.  This support includes customizing a routine that matches your condition and comfort level.  Sometimes prescription rinses, specialized kinds of toothpaste, or unique plaque-removal devices make all the difference in your efforts.

A strong relationship with your dental hygienist provides vital support to your overall wellness goals.  That may mean the difference between saving or losing your teeth. Call us today to continue the journey to health!

"Over 25-years in Houston Texas providing excellent dentistry and making it easy for you to smile again."

Dr. Jonathan Penchas

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