Everyone’s teeth can benefit from regular polishing sessions at the dentist. Regardless of how thoroughly teeth are cleaned every day they can still become stained by regular exposure to certain foods and beverages like red wine, coffee, and curry. (Find out more about teeth staining)
. For people who smoke, a professional polishing session can help reduce the discoloring caused by nicotine and the chemicals in cigarette smoke.
Professional teeth polishing uses specially designed abrasive pastes to remove all but the most stubborn of external tooth stains to make the teeth cleaner and brighter. Teeth will eventually become stained again with time, but regular polishing sessions will keep the staining under control and prevent external stains from becoming ingrained in the matrix of the tooth structure where they can only be removed by professional bleaching procedures.
Polishing is usually carried out at the end of a course of treatment or after scaling has been done during regular teeth cleaning appointments. The dentist or hygienist will use a dental handpiece fitted with a circular cup or brush to polish each tooth individually in the same way you might use an Oral-B electric toothbrush.
The abrasive polishing paste is applied to the polishing head of the hand unit and then brought into contact with the teeth to give a greater cleaning effect than could ever be done with a regular consumer toothbrush.
Tooth Polishing Objective
The objective of teeth polishing is to:
- Remove the staining and discoloration caused by poor oral hygiene and highly pigmented foods and beverages.
- Remove surface stains without damaging the tooth surface. Different polishing pastes contain different grades of abrasives, including – fine, medium, course, and extra-course. The dentist or hygienist will select the appropriate grade to ensure maximum effectiveness without causing excessive damage to the tooth enamel.
- Reduce defects on the tooth surface.
- Increase resistance to further tooth staining.
- Remove plaque and film from tooth surface.
- Achieve the final results that patients enjoy; i.e. cleaner, smoother and brighter teeth.