In Oral Health, Oral Hygiene, Professional Cleaning

The more detailed answer is that it depends on the health of your gums and how committed you are to your oral hygiene program. For example, if your gums are healthy and you follow a sound oral hygiene program, you may not need to have to have your teeth cleaned every six months, or even every year. I’ve had patients who take such good care of their gums and teeth that they could go two years or more without needing a cleaning. Admittedly, because gum disease is so prevalent, this is an exception. But it is possible. (Even if your teeth do not need cleaning every 6 months, I strongly recommend that everyone go twice a year to be checked for oral cancer and signs of other diseases whose symptoms first appear in the mouth.

ON THE OTHER HAND, if someone has moderate to advanced gum disease and isn’t willing to actively participate in a oral hygiene program, it may be necessary—if he wants any hope of keeping his teeth—to have them cleaned every month. And if he refuses to spend any time taking care of them at home, even having them cleaned every month will not be enough. The actual frequency will depend on the severity of your gum infection and how effective you are at doing your part.

We STRONGLY urge you to let your hygienist be the judge. You should know that what she recommends and how often you actually have your teeth cleaned will ultimately be up to YOU and you alone! Your hygienist can only support you while you are in the dental office. She won’t be following you home and taking care of your gums and teeth between visits—that’s YOUR responsibility. It’s important to remember that treatment is what is done TO you; prevention is something that is done BY you!

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