If you have never had your teeth professionally cleaned, this article is for you. Studies have shown that regular cleaning can help prevent periodontitis (gum disease), especially in those over the age of 40. Based on data compiled by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), nearly half of all Americans over the age of 40 have been diagnosed with some form of this disease. In this article, we will detail how periodontal disease impacts oral health and how professional dental care may help you avoid being diagnosed with it.
WHAT IS PERIODONTAL DISEASE?
Periodontitis, also known as periodontal disease, is characterized by inflammation of gum and bone tissue. If untreated, the disease can lead to tooth loss and chronic inflammatory diseases like diabetes and cardiovascular disease, for example. Scheduling regular dental exams and having your teeth professionally cleaned is a great way to avoid developing periodontal disease. Regular teeth cleaning also provides the following benefits.
- Brighter smile –Having your teeth professionally cleaned by a hygienist or dentist is a great way to get rid of food, drink, or tobacco stains that may be keeping your teeth from being as white as they could
- Bad breath – Professional cleanings can remove the bacteria and tartar that contributes to bad breath.
- Improved overall dental health – Whether you realize it or not, dental health is inextricably tied to bodily health, which means that a clean mouth can help keep you healthy.
WHAT TYPE OF DENTAL CLEANING SHOULD YOU GET?
When it comes to having your teeth professionally cleaned, there are several procedures that are commonly recommended by most dentist including.
- Regular cleaning –This option is ideal for those who have healthy gums, minimal gingivitis, and show no signs of bone loss. Basically, regular cleaning is intended to remove tartar, plaque buildup, and bacteria that may have accumulated on the teeth over time.
- Deep cleaning –This type of cleaning involves scaling and planning and is typically recommended for those who have been diagnosed with gum disease. The process entails using dental instruments to clean the space between the gums and the teeth where bacteria may have begun to form. That said, deep cleaning can be painful and may require a local anesthetic.
- Periodontal cleaning –Commonly recommended as a maintenance procedure for those already diagnosed with periodontal disease, this type of cleaning entails removing plaque and tartar from the gum line, which, in turn, helps to prevent tooth loss.
PROFESSIONAL TEETH CLEANING COSTS
Professional teeth cleaning can vary depending on the type of cleaning that is needed. While most insurance plans will cover regular cleanings at 100 percent, some insurance may have a maximum dollar amount that can be applied toward cleanings. This is especially true of deep cleanings where the average yearly maximum is $1,000 to $1,500. That said, let’s take a moment to address the cost associated with specific types of cleaning:
- Regular cleaning without x-rays can be $75 to $200, depending on the dental practice; however, statistical data shows the median cost to be about $80 to $175. If the regular cleaning includes x-rays, you can expect those costs to be slightly higher, typically $100 to $300. Again, statistical data shows the median cost for most dental patients to be $114 to $320.
- Deep cleaning is considerably more expensive than regular cleaning as it involves scaling and root planning. It is worth noting that this procedure is done one quadrant at a time and can cost $100 to $450 per quadrant. Full-mouth debridement, which consists of all four quadrants, can cost anywhere from $500 to $4,000. Of course, these costs can increase depending on the amount of cleaning involved and whether or not antibiotics are needed.
If antibiotics are needed, there is an additional cost of $35 to $85 per tooth. How much of the deep cleaning cost is covered by insurance? On average, insurance will cover some of the cost associated with deep cleaning; however, most patients are still left with an out of pocket cost of $360 to $437.
- Full-mouth debridement may be necessary in some cases, especially if there is an excessive plaque, tartar, or bacteria buildup.
If you’re not familiar with this procedure, it entails cutting away buildup that has gathered either underneath or around the gum line. As far as costs, you’re looking at about $74 to $150 with insurance and $390 to $3,800 without insurance. However, the median cost for most patients is $1,257.
- Periodontal maintenance can be very expensive with an average cost of $3,600 for a full-mouth treatment, which includes the cost of anesthetics. After the initial periodontal treatment, maintenance treatments will typically be about $115 per treatment.
In summation, the condition of your teeth can play a critical role in the type of treatment needed and also the respective cost. Nonetheless, taking care of your teeth should be a top priority as it will help in avoiding dental caries and a host of other dental problems. Beyond that, a healthy mouth can also improve your overall health. If you are concerned about the cost and don’t have dental insurance, there are programs available to help you receive free or discounted dental care.
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