Polishing

Polishing is often the last step of a dental cleaning, scaling, and some restorative procedures. It smoothes and polishes the tooth or restoration surface and removes some stains.

What is polishing?

Polishing is often the last step of a dental cleaning, scaling(deep root cleaning), and some restorative procedures, like when a new crown is placed. It smoothes and polishes the tooth or restoration surface and removes some stains. 

Tell me about the polishing procedure?

Your dentist or hygienist will polish your teeth as the last finishing touch to regular cleanings and deep root cleanings (called scaling and planing). When a new restoration like a crown or composite filling has been placed in your mouth, your dentist may polish it as well. Your dentist uses either a prophy jet polisher or a rubber cup polisher. The rubber cup holds a small amount of polishing paste which is held against the tooth surface on a spinning handpiece. Think of this as a gentle power sand and buff for your teeth. The prophy jet is more like a power washer, as it uses a jet of water and baking soda to smooth and polish teeth. Both methods are effective for removing some stains, and leaving teeth looking smooth and polished.

Should I have my teeth polished?

While polishing is common, and helpful in certain circumstances, it is not a mandatory part of a standard cleaning. Ask your dentist when and why he recommends polishing teeth.

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