An oral prophylaxis is a dental procedure that is performed to help reduce the risk of gum and tooth disease. Also known simply as a prophylaxis or prophy, this dental procedure is recommended to be taken every six months or yearly, depending on a patient’s history.
Prophylaxis is an excellent procedure to help keep the oral cavity in good health and also halt the progression of gum disease.
During a dental prophylaxis, your dentist will also inspect your teeth and jaw for any obvious signs of ill health. This inspection may reveal underlying medical issues such as receding gums, erupting wisdom teeth, dental cavities, or even oral cancer – some of which will require immediate treatment. Early identification of dental problems can help you deal with them before they become serious.
Tartar (calculus) and plaque buildup, both above and below the gum line, can cause serious periodontal problems if left untreated. Even using the best brushing and flossing homecare techniques, it can be impossible to remove debris, bacteria and deposits from gum pockets. The experienced eye of a dentist using specialized dental equipment is needed in order to spot and treat problems such as tartar and plaque buildup.
It’s hard to feel confident about a smile marred by yellowing, stained teeth. Prophylaxis can rid the teeth of unsightly stains and return the smile to its former glory.
Periodontal disease is often signified by persistent bad breath (halitosis). Bad breath is generally caused by a combination of rotting food particles below the gum line, possible gangrene stemming from gum infection, and periodontal problems. The removal of plaque, calculus and bacteria noticeably improves breath and alleviates irritation.