Do I need dental cleanings?

Hi Ellie,

Where do you personally stand on dental cleaning? I value your opinion and am thinking about cancelling my cleaning coming up at start of Jan.

Thank you,

Dear AS,

I think that a dental check-up by a concerned and preventive oriented dentist is a wonderful idea.

On the other hand, I try hard to dispel the idea that “cleaning teeth” is going to magically make teeth shinier, like “polishing stones”.

There are people who need dental help from a hygienist and his/her equipment, especially if they are forming crusted plaque (tartar) on their teeth. I would hope that these people would start using my system, eat plenty of xylitol and find a way to balance mouth acidity. Once acidity is balanced these deposits should stop forming (slowly over time they will get less and less).

The fact is, many people visit their dentist and have regular ‘cleanings” that they do not require for dental health. The more often you have cleanings the more outer surface of your tooth you may be loosing. Cleanings may not be a benefit to your teeth.

So it depends what your cleaning appointment is going to do for you. If you have gum problems, you may need cleaning around difficult teeth. If you have developed calculus under or above the gum this should be cleaned away. I am in no position to determine if you need a cleaning or not. Only your dentist could tell you that.

Is there any way to ask your dentist if you need a cleaning? That is really the person who can answer this question.

Sorry not to be able to help with this but I hope you understand that I it would be wrong for me to give you this advice over a computer screen!

Ellie Phillips, DDS

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