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  • Writer's pictureSheen Dental

Should I Be Using A Plaque Scraper At Home? Your Hygienist Thinks Not

Dental tools such as plaque scrapers are very easily available to buy and because of this we find that lots of patients think that using a scraper on their teeth at home is not only ok but also a good way to deep clean their teeth. However, scrapers are for professionals and if not used correctly could be doing more harm than good. Here’s why your hygienist Richmond wants you to leave the scraping to them.

How Do Cleaning Tools Work

Cleaning tools such as scrapers are made from metals with a sharp edge, this edge is used by your hygienist Richmond to remove hard plaque and tartar. When you visit your hygienist Richmond for a scale and polish they will use this type of tool to get right down to the gum line and even beneath the gums to remove any build up. They might use electric tools as well as manual ones depending on how hard the tartar is.

Of course getting rid of plaque and tartar is extremely important to your teeth and gum health and if it’s allowed to build up it can begin to cause serious problems to your long term oral health and while this should be avoided removing plaque needs to be done by a professional.

Why We Remove Plaque

The removal of plaque is important as, as already mentioned it causes health issues, mainly decay and gum disease. It does this as plaque actually releases acids and it’s these acids that can begin to break down the tooth's natural protective barrier - enamel. It’s also these acids which lead to gum disease which is left untreated can cause tooth loss.

Why Scraping Should Be Down At The Dentist

Scrapers are professional tools that require training to know how to use correctly. Hygienists have to go to a special branch of dental school to learn how to use them safely, and their training takes at least two years to complete.

These tools are sharp and actually are essentially little mini knives and can you imagine taking a little knife to your teeth safely? Nope. Didn’t think so. If used incorrectly you could damage your gums and even cause gum recession, you could also cause damage to your enamel layer, cut your tongue, cheeks or lips, you could even cause yourself an infection through actually pushing tartar further under the gums rather than removing it.

What You Can Do Instead

If you are worried about plaque build up, please book in to see us for a check up so that way our dentist team can properly assess the situation and offer you a plan to move forward. We can easily get your plaque removed by a trained professional and work out why the build up began in the first place.

The best way to keep plaque at bay at home is through brushing twice daily for two minutes and keeping on top of flossing. Floss is the safest most effective way to remove plaque at home.


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