Routine dental care is the best way to check in on the overall health of your teeth and keep your smile bright and healthy!  

But if your dentist finds periodontal disease or other problems with your teeth, you’ll want to schedule additional dental cleanings throughout the year. 

Learn more about the types of dental cleanings offered at First Hill Dental Center in Seattle — and better understand what it means if you have periodontal disease. 

Types of Dental Cleanings

The type of dental cleaning you need depends on your visit type and the health of your teeth. For new dental patients, first we’ll schedule a basic cleaning with x-rays and start your period chart. This gives our dentist a good idea of the overall health of your teeth.

After that new patient visit, we’ll schedule basic dental cleanings for twice a year. But, if your dentist notices periodontal disease, we’ll start to schedule prophy and perio maintenance to provide a deeper clean for your teeth. 

Deep Cleanings for Periodontal Disease 

Prophy and perio maintenance are two types of deeper cleanings that will help remove plaque and tartar from your teeth and monitor periodontal disease. But what is periodontal disease? 

What Is Periodontal Disease? 

Periodontitis, also known as gum disease, is a gum infection that can cause damage to your teeth and the tissue in your mouth. At the first signs of periodontal disease, you’ll notice that your gums are red, tender, and swollen. Beyond that, you can watch for other signs and symptoms including bad breath, receding gum lines, loose teeth, or tooth loss. 

If left untreated, periodontal disease can lead to tooth loss and damage to the jawbone and surrounding tissue. That’s what makes it important to schedule routine prophy and perio maintenance appointments with your dentist. 

Prophy Versus Perio Maintenance 

If you have periodontal disease, you’ll schedule alternating prophy and perio maintenance to prevent your periodontitis from worsening. Both of these deeper cleanings help reduce the effects of periodontitis and give your dentist the opportunity to check on your dental health. 

Prophy is a deep cleaning for periodontal patients where the dentist focuses on scaling and root planing. Scaling removes any plaque and tartar that has built up on the teeth. Root planning then smooths out your roots to help strengthen the gums, providing a good start for periodontal patients.

From there, periodontal patients will schedule routine perio maintenance. Since periodontal disease never goes away, these maintenance cleanings will allow you to monitor the health of your teeth and keep the periodontitis from worsening. 

Visit Our Seattle Dentist Today

When it comes to your teeth, make sure you’re giving them the cleaning that they need. If you’re worried about periodontal disease or need to schedule your prophy and perio maintenance, meet with our Seattle dentist today. Schedule your cleanings at First Hill Dental Center now! 

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