One of the primary purposes of a dental evaluation to debride the teeth of any plaque that is on the teeth. This plaque is basically bacteria that can cause cavities, gingivitis, and even periodontal disease. Without regular dental cleanings,this plaque can calcify and become a hardened material called calculus (tartar) that cannot be removed by simply brushing. This tartar can then lead to recession of both gingiva and the bone that holds your teeth which can cause loose teeth, loss of teeth, and oral infections. It is also one of the major causes of bad breath.
Though a simple cleaning (prophylaxis) may be indicated for most patients, others may require what is colloquially called a "deep cleaning" or scaling and root planing. The difference in these two is that a deep cleaning removes the calculus that is deep below your gums that your tooth brush can't reach because your gums are blocking you. To perform this procedure we provide a profound anesthetic and clean below the gums.
Following a "deep cleaning" patients will generally notice that they no longer have a bad taste in their mouth when they wake up, their teeth feel smoother, their gums feel tighter, and their gums don't bleed upon brushing.