Dental Cleaning Medellin – Medellin Dental SolutionsDental Cleaning - English Speaking Dentist Medellin

Dental Cleaning Medellín

Dental Cleaning

 ¿What are dental cleanings and why have them?

Dental cleanings involve removing plaque (soft, sticky, bacteria infested film) and tartar (calculus) deposits that have built up on the teeth over time. Usually it is tooth colored and can easily be mistaken as part of the teeth, but it also can vary from brown to black in color.

If calculus (tartar, as dentists like to call it) is allowed to accumulate on the teeth it will unfortunately provide the right conditions for bacteria to thrive next to the gums.  The purpose of the dental cleaning and polishing is basically to leave the surfaces of the teeth clean and smooth so that bacteria are unable to stick to them and you have a better chance of keeping the teeth clean during your regular home care. Also, it leaves your teeth feeling lovely, smooth and clean, which is nice when you run your tongue around them.


The professional cleaning of teeth is sometimes referred to as prophylaxis (or prophy for short).  It's a Greek word which means "to prevent beforehand" - in this case, it helps prevent gum disease.

 ¿How are dental cleanings done?

Ultrasonic instrument

Commonly used first is an ultrasonic instrument which uses tickling vibrations to knock larger pieces of tartar loose.  It also sprays a cooling mist of water while it works to wash away debris and keep the area at a proper temperature. The ultrasonic instrument tips are curved and rounded and are always kept in motion around the teeth. They are by no means sharp since their purpose is to knock tartar loose and not to cut into the teeth.


Once all the surfaces are smooth, the dental professional may polish your teeth. Polishing is done using a slow speed polisher with a soft rubber cup that spins on the end. Prophylaxis paste is a special gritty toothpaste like material that is scooped up like ice cream into the cup and spun around on the teeth to make them shiny and smooth.

Prophy-Flex stain removal

This treatment is primarily used to remove staining built up on teeth from smoking, tea, coffee, red wine and other foods consumed over a period of time.

Although this is not strictly a whitening treatment, patients have commented on how much cleaner and whiter their teeth appear. The treatment is quick, painless and usually takes around 15 minutes to complete.

The system works by air, water and carbonated particles being projected at high pressure onto the tooth surface. The treatment is non-damaging to the tooth surface. ¿Is it going to be painful?

Most people find that cleanings are painless, and find the sensations described above as being like tickling vibrations. The cooling mist of water, and the feeling of pressure during "scraping" do not cause discomfort. A lot of people even report that they enjoy cleanings and the lovely smooth feel of their teeth afterwards! There may be odd zingy sensations, but many people don't mind as they only last a few seconds.

Painful dental cleaning experiences can be caused by a number of things: a rough dentist or hygienist, exposed dentine (not dangerous, but can make cleanings unpleasant), or sore gum tissues.

Be sure to let your dentist/hygienist know if you find things are getting too uncomfortable for your liking. They can recommend various options to make the cleaning more enjoyable.

¿How much do dental cleaning costs?

The cost of a general  dental cleaning ranges from $40 to $60 dollars.

¿What is the difference between an ordinary cleaning and deep cleaning?

There is some confusion about the difference between scaling and root planing. Scaling is basically the process of removing dental tartar from the surfaces of the teeth.  Root planing is the process of smoothing the root surfaces and removing any infected tooth structure. If you have gum disease or gum pocketing, the gum pockets around the teeth will have deepened, thereby allowing tartar deposits to form under the gumline.

The two processes tend to blur together since during the cleaning process, the dental worker scales away tartar and performs any necessary root planning at the same time. Any roughness can be planed away to result in a silky smooth surface.

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