San Jose, CA
Scheduling regular dental cleanings is a key step in the prevention of oral disease.
By removing plaque and tartar, we are reducing cavities, fighting against gum disease, and removing calculus build-up, while helping your teeth look fresh and white.
At Nancy Shiba, DDS we recommend all of our patients come in for a professional dental cleaning at least once a year.
Taking this preventive step will help your teeth be protected from damage causing disease and keep our team on top of your overall dental health.
Dental cleanings are a safe and easy treatment that leaves your mouth feeling fresh and clean.
We understand that some people get scared or nervous when they sit in the dental chair, especially if they haven't seen a dentist in a long time, but we take care to make sure all of our patients feel comfortable when they come in for a dental cleaning.
What is a Dental Cleaning?
Your dental cleaning appointment includes multiple steps, we will:
Examine Gum Tissue
The number one cause of tooth loss in adults is gum disease. We will examine and review past information collected to determine the status of your gum tissue.
This step includes measuring the depth of your gum pockets and checking for symptoms of gum disease. Your gum tissue should fit snugly against your teeth, when pockets form this could be an indication of trouble.
We measure your gum pockets and record the data in your file. Measurements exceeding 3mm is something that we want to correct during your cleaning.
Most of our adult patients require a more in depth dental cleaning known as scaling and root planing.
We use an ultrasonic scaler to loosen and remove hardened plaque known as tartar. The tool operates by blasting a very directed stream of oxygenated water and a vibrating tip, it's like a power washing system for your teeth.
We clear away any material and then smooth the roots to reduce future collection of debris.
With the teeth clean, we then polish your teeth to remove extrinsic stains.This is completed using a rotating brush and a gritty toothpaste.
Extrinsic stains are stains that are left by the foods and drinks we consume, they are also known as surface stains.
Intrinsic stains is the staining that occurs to the inside of the enamel, most often from certain medications or fluorosis, these stains can not be polished away because they are part of the enamel.
The education we provide is one of our favorite steps, we love engaging with our patients and providing them with tips and tools to have healthier teeth and gums.
We hope you bring questions, and we love to demonstrate techniques for better brushing and flossing. We can also recommend various products that have shown success, there are different tools for both brushing and flossing to accommodate every need.
Why Should I Schedule a Dental Cleaning?
Estimates from the CDC tells us that the percentage of adults ages 20-44 with untreated tooth decay issues is 31.6%.
Even if your mouth feels fine and you are in no pain, there may be potentially serious dental problems developing beneath the surface that could turn into a major issue next year or even next month.
Your teeth can't fight disease on its own, we want to catch these issues while they are small and remedy them before they grow.
The only way to stop this from happening is to have a dental professional examine your teeth and remove disease causing bacteria. Following your dental cleaning, most appointments follow up with a dental exam.
What is a Dental Exam?
Your dental exam is completed by our dentist, Nancy Shiba, DDS.
It is a time to look for both current and potential problems.
The goal is to catch problems while they are small before they become painful or problematic.
Dental exams generally include:
Using a probe, we will visually examine your soft and hard tissue in and around your mouth.
This includes the teeth, gums, tongue, cheeks and lips.
We are looking for signs and symptoms of disease and any other disorder. We may discuss malocclusion or impacted teeth with you this time.
Digital X-ray Examination
We often include digital radiology images as part of the examination process. This may vary based on the last time x-rays were taken.
Our digital x-ray images are far superior to film x-rays of the past with better, clearer, large resolution images that were captured using a small percentage of the radiology in the past.
They are safe and informative of your oral health. Digital x-rays allow us to see portions of your mouth that are otherwise hidden.
Oral Cancer Screening
We will conduct a brief oral cancer screening as part of your checkup.
Dentists find more incidence of oral cancer than any other medical professional.
We look for bumps, lumps, changes in the coloring or texture of the tissue, and anything out of the ordinary.
If we find anything, this does not mean that the patient has cancer, it simply means that we would like a lab to take a closer look.
Just as the hygienist likes to educate about oral hygiene, we love to talk about dental care with our patients.
This may include questions about other services such as orthodontia or wisdom teeth removal or more.
We want our patients to ask questions and provide answers to help them have better oral health.
Prevention is important, we may discuss the addition of dental sealants or a quick fluoride treatment to help you have healthier enamel.
Preventive steps like these can make a significant difference in your oral health.
Whether you brush and floss regularly, or if you need some help getting back on a regular dental cleaning program, schedule an appointment Nancy Shiba, DDS today. Call us now at (669) 306-7669.