You may have heard your dentist say, you need a scaling. Iam sure you would know what tartar means..
Scaling is a process that involves scraping of the tartar off your teeth and getting them back to be squeaky clean. Scaling can also remove stains that are on the outer surface of the tooth. Scaling is usually done with an ultrasonic scaler but there are also plain old manual scalers.
An ultrasonic scaler uses the energy of exploding bubbles of water to remove the tartar (cool huh??!!). Its relatively quicker, less painful and less traumatic.
Hand scaling is usually done in patients who have any kind of respiratory trouble or in a patient with active infection. In some patients with old cardiac pacemakers, its better to take the advice of your dentist and your physician as to which method is best for you.
Scaling will not remove the tooth enamel as is wrongly believed. Nor can scaling be used to remove stains inside the tooth surface as occurs in drinking well water.
Before your scaling procedure, brush your teeth to remove all gross particles. Its not very pleasant for the dentist to remove your morning breakfast from your mouth. After brushing, its advisable to rinse your mouth with an antibacterial mouthrinse.
Scaling produces an aerosol - a spray of water and saliva and most importantly the bateria in your mouth. This mouth rinse considerably reduces the bacteria in the aerosol.
During the scaling procedure, if you feel extreme sensitvity, inform your dentist so that he or she can adjust the frequency and water spray level. This does not occur with hand scaling.
After the scaling procedure, if you have pain or sensitivity, ask your dentist for a mild analgesic. It usually resolves in a day.
Scaling done regularly . say once in six months will kee your teeth and gums in good condition. Scaling should be complimented with good brushing and flossing habits. With your teeth shining and your gums a healthy pink, you should not stop smiling .. healthy!!