Almost all general dentists provide dental cleanings at their offices, and everyone needs a dental cleaning to stay up-to-date on their oral health. We are going to tell you about your dental cleaning appointment-what you need to know and what questions you might have. Even if you have perfect teeth, and take care of them, your oral health can change as a result of your bodily health – and your dentist is the best judge of your oral health.
At Higginbotham Family Dental, we have registered dental hygienists and assistants. They provide the best dental cleanings for our patients. Dental Cleanings are important to your overall health, so we make sure every patient starts with a little dental hygiene education. The hygienist or assistant will make sure you are comfortable with things like a neck pillow or blanket. Then they will check to see if you need a beverage or earphones. Finally, Some of our dental offices have massage dental chairs, and they will check to see if patients prefer them on or off. Once our patient is comfortable, firstly, we take x-rays and polish the teeth to get them ready for scaling, cleaning, and flossing. Secondly, the dentist will perform an exam and provide a treatment plan for dental work.
Does A Teeth Cleaning Hurt?
Teeth cleanings should not hurt at your dental appointment. If a patient feels sensitivity or pain during cleaning, it is normally due to unhealthy gums or decay that is present. If a patient is normally sensitive, we recommend using sensitive toothpaste or purchasing toothpaste with extra fluoride. We offer Clinpro toothpaste for an additional cost. Every hygienist has a different touch, so if you prefer a softer touch, let us know. We can make sure to put you with the right hygienist, or to just let your hygienist know your preference in technique. If you are sensitive in an area, we can also numb that area or be extra careful around that area during your teeth cleaning.
How Long Does It Take To Have Your Teeth Cleaned At The Dentist?
Adult dental cleaning appointments with exams and x-rays are scheduled for about an hour. If a patient is just getting a cleaning with an exam and x-rays, then it will only be scheduled for about 30 minutes. Kids twelve and under typically only take 30 minutes for a full dental cleaning appointment with an exam and x-rays. Teenage kids’ scheduled times will range depending on the patient. They range from 40 minutes to an hour.
If you are getting a deep cleaning, also known as periodontal treatment, times will vary. For this type of cleaning to treat gum disease, all four areas of your mouth will have to be numb for the cleaning. Some patients prefer to do a quadrant at a time, which takes about 30–40 minutes. Some choose to do one side of the mouth at a time, which is about an hour. If someone decides to do the entire mouth at one time, it could take 90–120 minutes. This is not usually recommended since your entire mouth will be numb for a few hours and could cause slight discomfort.
How Long Can You Go Without A Teeth Cleaning?
We recommend consistent cleanings for our patients. Some patients only need two dental cleanings a year. Some require three to four a year if the tartar buildup is heavy or the gums are not as healthy. Dental cleaning appointments are vital to a patient’s overall health. Keeping preventative teeth cleaning appointments and exams helps prevents future costly decay. This is also a great time to make sure past dental procedures that are done are not compromised with additional decay or fractures. Do not go longer than what your dental office recommends for your teeth cleanings. If you decide to not do what is recommended, you are risking tooth decay, loss, periodontal disease, and infections. All of these things affect the quality of life as well as can be more costly than necessary if decay and infections are caught sooner than later.
Dental Cleaning Cost?
Dental cleaning costs will vary. It may depend on if you have insurance or not, and what your dental insurance carrier’s fees are for cleanings. If you are not insured, you can sign up for our Discount Dental Plan. Membership in this plan allows two complementary exams, cleanings, x-rays, and fluoride procedures.
Regular Hygiene/Cleaning Cost
The cost of a dental cleaning if you are not insured, and are considered self-pay, will be dependent on the state you live in. You can call the offices for an estimate. New patients will need to also have an exam and x-rays with their first cleaning. If you have insurance, then there is no cost if insurance pays at 100 percent. Sometimes a deductible must be paid when a cleaning appointment is done, but very rarely. We check all insurance benefits for our patients before their appointment. So this way, you will know what we estimate you to owe for each appointment ahead of time.
If you are diagnosed with gum disease or periodontal disease, then you will need periodontal treatment. Our hygienist will perform this gum therapy, usually during multiple visits. Most insurances cover 50-80 percent of this dental cleaning procedure. This leaves the patient with a 50-20 percent copay. This copay amount will depend on the dental insurance fees.
At Higginbotham Family Dental, we get a breakdown of all our patient’s dental insurance. We do this to give the best dental treatment estimates. This is not a guarantee of payment from the insurance company, but an estimate we will collect until they pay. If the patient does not have insurance, then we offer a 5% cash or check discount for patients that pay in full for the entire treatment. We may also suggest that non-insured patients sign up for the discount dental plan to help cover the cost at a discounted rate of at least 15%. Finally, there is an in-house payment plan option that can be used with a smaller down payment. The monthly payment for periodontal treatment is about 3–6 months to make it more affordable.