Providing Better Smiles to Calgary & nearby areas of Alberta

One of the ways we keep you at optimal health is by protecting against the bacterial assault that occurs daily in your mouth. For many patients, even with healthy mouths, this requires getting cleanings three times a year instead of two.

Why do insurance companies only cover two cleanings? The concept of getting dental cleanings twice a year stemmed from toothpaste advertising campaigns back in the 1930′s and 40′s which promoted getting dental check up and cleanings every 6 months. The dental insurance companies adopted that regimen into their coverage in the 1950′s and unfortunately, have not changed their stance since. That is surprising considering that 80% of the adult population suffers from periodontal disease.

So why do you need three cleanings? You may not. The number of cleanings you require per year depends on you and no one else. Some patients see our hygienists four times per year and some will see them four times in a month initially to get their gum and supporting bones to a state of health before we can even decide on a yearly hygiene frequency. Not even hygienists and dentists can always get away with twice a year cleanings. No one can get at every surface of their teeth to remove problems. This includes the bad bacteria which contribute to the build-up, bad breath and the formation of gum disease. The accumulation depends on your personal hygiene habits, genetic disposition, mineral content in your saliva and diet. You can, however, fight the build up of tartar, bacteria and their toxins by having more frequent cleanings.

What we know about the bad bacteria is that it takes about three months to establish a colony in your mouth and by the fourth month, they are in full production of the bi-products or toxins that attack your enamel and gums. By doing three cleanings a year, we are able to interrupt this cycle and keep you at optimal health. It also allows for early detection of any possible decay formation which now (with the help of some technologically advanced products), we can reverse.

So what should I do? Try to not let your insurance coverage dictate your cleaning intervals. We strive to consider all factors that affect your dental health and make our recommendations with the ultimate goal of total health and wellness for you. We understand that this means you might have to pay out of pocket for the additional cleaning, and so we give our recommendation based on your risks and let you make the choice! Come see us for your regularly scheduled cleaning and we’ll be happy to make an assessment and recommendation for you! Contact us today.