Near the end of your hygiene appointment, you will likely be told it’s time for a polish and asked what flavour of paste you would like. Wait, didn’t you just brush your teeth at home? What’s going on, and why do you need your teeth polished?
Over time, plaque, a sticky yellowish substance, builds up on your teeth. This adheres to the spaces between your teeth, and rough surfaces in particular. Over time, plaque buildup turns into tartar (calculus), which is hard as well as difficult to remove. The bacteria which make up plaque contribute to gum disease, which has bad consequences down the road for your oral health! What polishing does is it completes the cleaning process by removing even more plaque and bacteria from the visible parts of your teeth. It also smooths your teeth, making them shiny and slippery and inhospitable to plaque. Finally, polishing is cosmetic: it makes your teeth look extra shiny, clean, and white, helping to remove any staining.
Your hygienist will ask you what flavour of paste you would like – mint is usually on offer, and other flavours may also be available such as berry. This isn’t toothpaste! It is similar, but much grittier, to help with smoothing the tooth surface. The hygienist then scoops some paste into what is known as a “prophy cup”, which is basically a small soft rubber cup attached to a motor. This cup spins quickly against your teeth, completing the polishing. The procedure shouldn’t hurt as the cup is very soft and it is only done on the visible surfaces of your teeth.
Once the polish is finished, your mouth will be rinsed and you can spit out any gritty residue left behind. If your run your tongue along the surfaces of your teeth they should feel beautifully smooth and clean! Make sure to floss your teeth daily, and brush at least twice daily, to help maintain this great look and feel.
At Concept Dentistry, we love to help your smile shine! Come see us in our Forest Lawn office which conveniently serves many surrounding neighbourhoods such as Marlborough and Crossroads.
Suite 600, 2710 17th Ave SE
Proudly serving Calgary and the nearby communities of Southview, Radisson, Forest Lawn, Dover, Erin Woods, Penbrook Meadows, Inglewood and more.
Monday 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Tuesday9:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Wednesday7:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Thursday7:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Friday8:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Saturday*8:00 AM – 4:00 PM
* Twice Monthly
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