How to Protect Your Teeth

What To Expect During Your First Dental Cleaning After A Long Time

Have you been procrastinating a visit to the dentist because it has been a while? The fear of having many cavities or other oral health problems may actually be scaring you away from a cleaning and inspection. However, delaying the process is not going to make the situation any better. Cavities will only get deeper, and problems with the health of your gums are only going to get worse. Here is what you can expect from the first dental services after going without one for a long time.


Your dentist is going to want to take x-rays of your mouth during that first checkup, since they want to see what is happening underneath your gums and inside your teeth. While the cost of x-rays may make the visit more expensive, know that they won't be taken every single time. It is common for the dentist to do basic bitewing x-rays once per year, and a full scan of your mouth less frequently than that.


You are going to have a lot of bleeding due to not going to the dentist in a while. There is going to be a lot of plaque buildup on your teeth, and your dentist will have to work hard to remove it all. This can result in some aggressive cleaning that will result in bleeding. If you have early stages of gum disease, bleeding is also common when the dentist works closely with your gums. Scraping the teeth beneath the gum line may be all it takes to cause bleeding to occur.


That first cleaning after a long time will take a lot longer than future cleanings. Your dentist is working harder than they normally have to in order to clean your teeth, so you can expect that first appointment to go a long time. However, your future appointments should go quicker if you are going every six months. Just make sure to plan and give yourself extra time for the first cleaning so that you're prepared.


Some dentists take measurements of your gums to track recession, as well as which parts of your gums are bleeding. This data is used to determine how the health of your gums is progressing over future appointments. It is possible to reverse the effects of neglecting your oral health through regular brushing and dental appointments, and the dentist will want to see if your efforts are paying off and making a positive impact.