What is polishing? Polishing is often the last step of a dental cleaning, scaling (deep root cleaning), and some restorative procedures, like when a new crown is placed. It smooths and polishes the tooth or restores surface and removes some stains.
Tell me about the polishing procedure? Dr. Ghannam, Dr. Annoni or our hygienist will polish your teeth as the last finishing touch to regular cleanings and deep root cleanings (called scaling and planing). When a new restoration like a crown or composite filling has been placed in your mouth, our team at Artisan Dental Burke, VA and Chevy Chase, MD may polish it as well. Our team uses either a prophy jet polisher or a rubber cup polisher. The rubber cup holds a small amount of polishing paste which is held against the tooth surface on a spinning handpiece. Think of this as a gentle power sand and buff for your teeth. The prophy jet is more like a power washer, as it uses a jet of water and baking soda to smooth and polish teeth. Both methods are effective for removing some stains, and leaving teeth looking smooth and polished.
Should I have my teeth polished? While polishing is common, and helpful in certain circumstances, it is not a mandatory part of a standard cleaning. Ask Dr. Ghannam and Dr. Annoni when and why they recommends polishing teeth.