Can Teeth Fall Out After Deep Teeth Cleaning?

During a professional cleaning at the dentist, patients will receive a scale and polish. During this procedure, the dental professional will remove plaque and tartar from areas which may be difficult to reach with regular brushing and flossing. Once removed, they will then polish the surface of the teeth.


In most cases, a scale and polish effectively removes the build-up of plaque and tartar. For some patients, however, the tartar can cause gum disease and the patient requires a deep cleaning of the teeth. A deep cleaning is recommended for patients with gum disease. The procedure removes tartar below which has accumulated below the gum line. A local anesthetic is used during the treatment to ensure patients remain comfortable, however, patients often experience sore gums following the procedure.


A deep teeth cleaning is also called dental scaling and root planing. The deep cleaning is used for patients with early signs of gum disease. Tartar can accumulate in the pockets between their teeth and gums or even down to the roots of the teeth. Gum disease which is not promptly treated can result in serious issues and tooth loss.


Below is a summary of the deep cleaning process.

1. Diagnosis: Before a deep clean, the dentist will use a periodontal probe to diagnose patients with gum disease. The probe measures the gap between the teeth and gums. Gaps which are deeper than 3mm indicate the presence of gum disease. The dentist will look for other signs of gum disease such as bleeding, inflammation, and loose teeth.


Gum disease is classified into three different stages: gingivitis, periodontitis, and advanced periodontitis. Gingivitis can often be treated with improved oral hygiene. Patients with periodontitis or advanced periodontitis typically require a deep teeth cleaning for treatment. The dentist will usually request an x-ray to determine if a patient has experienced any bone loss.


2. Initial Deep Cleaning: A full mouth deep cleaning is typically completed over the course of two separate appointments. The dentist uses a local anesthetic to numb and treat one side of the mouth at a time. If the entire mouth is numb, it is incredibly difficult for patients to eat, drink, and talk after the appointment. The numbing cream or local anesthetic helps ensure patients remain comfortable during the treatment. Once the area is numb, a small dental tool is used to remove tartar from below the gumline. In some cases, the area may be difficult to reach or contain stubborn tartar. If needed, the dentist can use an ultrasonic device to remove the plaque and tartar.


3. Second Deep Cleaning: During the second appointment, the dentist will treat the other side of the mouth with the same techniques used during the first treatment. The dentist will also evaluate how the treated area is healing.


Each deep cleaning appointment will take about 90 minutes. Patients with a severe infection may require an additional treatment such as an antibiotic gel, antibiotic tablets, or a mouthwash.


4. Follow-up Deep Cleaning: Once both deep cleaning appointments are complete, the dentist will schedule a follow-up appointment. This usually occurs about two weeks after the second deep cleaning. The dentist will measure the size of the pockets between the teeth and gums to determine if there is any improvement.


It is extremely uncommon for the teeth to fall out after a deep cleaning. In some cases, patients may feel that their teeth feel looser following the procedure. This occurs because the tartar is removed from the pockets between the gums and teeth which creates a gap. As a result, it can make the teeth feel loose. During the healing process, the gums will reattach to the teeth and feel more secure.


The dentist will obtain x-rays prior to performing a deep cleaning to determine if there is bone loss. The x-ray can also help determine if the deep cleaning procedure can result in tooth loss.

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