Utah County Dentist Answers What to Expect Before & After a Teeth Cleaning

No matter your age or dental history, everyone gets a little nervous when it’s time to make that “dentist near me” search to schedule a new appointment. Understanding what to expect and the affordable payment plans Platinum Dental Care offers. Read on to see what top dentists recommend before and after every routine dental appointment.

Don’t be afraid to express your feelings of dread or apprehension to your local dentist before or during your appointment (we promise they will not take it personally). Whatever unpleasant experiences you may have had in the past at other local dentists, for the majority of Platinum Dental Care patients getting a teeth cleaning is a simple and painless process thanks to our gentle and expert staff.

​Prior to your Teeth Cleaning

Before a teeth cleaning, here are some great ways to prepare:

  • Know your family medical history

  • Keep up with regular brushing and flossing

  • Brush and floss directly prior to a cleaning will rid your teeth of any debris or food particles

  • Write down any questions you have before coming to your appointment so you don’t forget

  • If you’ve been experiencing any pain or toothache from a possible cavity or otherwise, be sure to let your dentist know so they can examine the affected area and discern the treatment best for you.

​Step 1: Oral Exam

The first step of every oral exam is the hygienist making a visual check of your mouth--big problems will be obvious and easy to identify from a quick look. This is when the hygienist will use an angled mirror to see every side of your teeth. Hygienists are trained to spot signs of decay, eroded enamel, inflamed gums, broken teeth, and other oral health concerns. Based on your family and personal history, your Platinum Dental Care dentist may perform an oral cancer screening by checking your neck, palate, lymph glands, and tongue. Factors that put you at risk for oral cancer are a history of drinking alcohol, using tobacco, or genetic history of oral cancer. If the hygienist notices any hints of decay or disease while making his/her visual check, the dentist will address those concerns first.

​Step 2: Teeth Cleaning - Scaler

Cleaning begins once your exam concludes. Teeth cleaning procedure begins with the hygienist using what is called a “scaler” to scrape away plaque or tartar that has built up along the gumline and between teeth. The scraping sound of a scaler is 100% normal and will in no way harm the surface of your teeth. The cleaner your teeth are, the quicker the hygienist can scrape your teeth.

Scraping plaque is simply a matter of sweeping away the bacteria and its byproduct off of your teeth, but scraping tartar is like scrubbing barnacles off the bottom of a boat--it takes a little more effort! Your hygienist will complete their scaler routine with a quick rinse to remove any remaining debris. If you experience any bleeding along the gumline during this process, don’t worry--bleeding gums are very normal, especially if you are in the beginning stages of gingivitis.

Suggested Reading: How to Prevent Tartar Buildup

Part 3: Teeth Cleaning - Polish

Your teeth are ready for a polish once they have been scaled clean. Your Utah County dentist doesn’t just use any kind of toothpaste to polish your teeth--at your cleaning expect to choose from a variety of flavored high-grit toothpastes. Because your local dentist will only use a strong abrasive twice a year at your cleanings, this professional toothpaste will not harm your enamel. If this high-grit toothpaste were used every day would cause serious damage, but at your appointment this gritty toothpaste will leave your enamel shiny and clean.

​Part 4: Professional Flossing

Flossing always follows brushing, even at the dentist! Your skilled hygienist will floss your teeth more perfectly than usual, removing any plaque or tartar left behind. During your flossing your hygienist will also use this opportunity to look for any signs of gingivitis or other trouble spots, providing professional training for your flossing at home!

​Part 5: Final Rinse!

A final rinse with a mouthwash that contains fluoride will be the last part of your cleaning. A fluoride rinse will strengthen your enamel and remineralize your teeth after a thorough scrubbing. When you walk out of the office after your cleaning your mouth will feel clean and your breath will smell fresh!

​Dentist Checkup

Before you leave the dental office your Utah County dentist will make a final check of your mouth. The dentist confirms what the hygienist found during your cleaning, checking any soft spots in your enamel or other concerns. If you grind your teeth, need braces, or have any other concerns, this is the time to talk to him or her about it. This may also be the time when your Platinum Dental Care dentist discusses sealants as a possible preventative measure against cavities. Dental X-Rays may also be performed in order to get a better look at the overall health of your teeth.

​Dentist Near Me

After you’ve had your teeth professionally cleaned by your local Platinum Dental Care dentist, don’t forget all of the things your dentist and hygienist explain in your appointment! Brush and floss every day, come to your 6-month cleaning and checkup, and avoid high-sugar diets.


One of the most important ways to keep your teeth healthy is to schedule your regular dental appointments--we even offer same day cleanings! If it’s been awhile since your last teeth cleaning, or you want to get to know your local dentist at Platinum Dental Care you can request an appointment online or call at 801-806-4704. We look forward to seeing you!