Maintaining good oral hygiene is essential for healthy teeth and gums. However, even if you brush and floss regularly, you’re likely to miss hard-to-reach areas where buildup can cause disease and decay. That’s why it's important to schedule a professional dental cleaning at least twice a year.
At Smiles of Chevy Chase, our experienced Chevy Chase general dentist Dr. Despina Markogiannakis uses state-of-the-art instruments to provide professional dental cleanings. Keep reading to learn more about dental cleanings, their importance, and how you can benefit from getting a professional cleaning at least twice a year.
Dental Cleaning Reviews
"After having a very poor experience with my prior dentist, I began a search for a new one. I stumbled upon Dr Marko while doing a search through my insurance company. After much research, I decided to give Dr Marko a chance. My first appointment was a consult. I felt very comfortable, almost as if I was being welcomed into a new family. The entire staff was exceptionally welcoming, and Dr Marko was clearly knowledgeable in her field of expertise. All in all... I knew that this office was a right fit for me! My second appointment was a routine cleaning. Once again, the staff welcomed me with open arms, and treated me as a family member. Dr Marko and her staff are incredibly friendly, and I would highly recommend her services to anyone searching for a new dentist."- C.B. / Yelp / Mar 05, 2015
"Went here for the first time today through a referral promotion with my company and I just need to say that she might be the best dentist i've ever gone to. The process of making an appointment was a little rocky as it seems like they may not have a front desk attendant and between making an appt on ZocDoc and then follow up calls for the appointment I received a confirmation for 12:30 while they received it for 1:00. With that being said I'd wait hours to keep using her as my dentist. Her dental hygienist is the sweetest and made the entire process painless and as I was on a tight schedule worked quickly and efficiently while still making sure I got everything I needed. Most hygienist and doctors don't take a ton of time to explain whats going on with your teeth and just tell you to floss more but she took a lot of measures to prevent issues that were starting to occur as I'm getting older and can stop them now instead of being a toothless wonder later. I highly highly recommend her and she has an awesome referral program to get you a free teeth whitening kit if you refer friends or family!"- A.G. / Yelp / Mar 17, 2016
"Dr. Marko is one of the nicest, kindest people I know. In addition, she is one of the most skilled dentists practicing in Washington. The staff is very warm, welcoming and accommodating. The hygienist is comforting and made me feel at ease during my cleaning. I love the way my teeth felt when she was done. I have recently retired from dental practice in D.C. after 47 years. I feel extremely fortunate to have Dr. Marko taking over my dental family and also to have her for my personal dentist as well."- J.S. / Google / Jul 19, 2018
"Went here for the first time today through a referral promotion with my company and I just need to say that she might be the best dentist i've ever gone to. The process of making an appointment was a little rockyas it seems like they may not have a front desk attendant and between making an appt on ZocDoc and then follow up calls for the appointment I received a confirmation for 12:30 while they received it for 1:00. With that being said I'd wait hours to keep using her as my dentist. Her dental hygienist is the sweetest and made the entire process painless and as I was on a tight schedule worked quickly and efficiently while still making sure I got everything I needed. Most hygienist and doctors don't take a ton of time to explain whats going on with your teeth and just tell you to floss more but she took a lot of measures to prevent issues that were starting to occur as I'm getting older and can stop them now instead of being a toothless wonder later. I highly highly recommend her and she has an awesome referral program to get you a free teeth whitening kit if you refer friends or family!"- A.G. / ZocDoc / Mar 17, 2016
"She was amazing! The visit was wonderful from start to finish. I get a little bit of anxiety when it comes to cleanings and the hygienist was kind and reassuring throughout. I've already recommended Dr. Marko to several of my friends.I'm happy to finally find a dentist that I feel comfortable with and trust in DC."- K.Z. / ZocDoc / Jul 17, 2017
What To Expect During a Dental Cleaning
Even if you maintain a good oral hygiene routine at home, it can be challenging to remove all of the buildup on your own. During a professional dental cleaning, our team uses specialized instruments to remove plaque and tartar that have accumulated on your teeth.
An ultrasonic device with high-speed vibrations and a lubricating mist is used to remove larger pieces of tartar and plaque, with your dentist or hygienist focusing on harder-to-reach areas. Handheld instruments such as a curette or scaler are then used to remove smaller pieces. Each tooth is individually scaled to ensure the complete removal of all buildup.
After the teeth are thoroughly cleaned, they are polished to remove stains and strengthen the enamel. Fluoride treatment can also be performed upon request or if needed to further protect your teeth. Fluoride is a chemical compound that contains the element fluorine. It is commonly used in dentistry to help prevent tooth decay by strengthening the enamel of teeth.
Follow-Up Dental Cleanings & Appointments
At Smiles of Chevy Chase, Dr. Markogiannakis and her team understand that every patient is unique and has different dental concerns. That's why they may recommend more frequent cleanings for patients who have gum disease or other oral health issues.
During your cleaning, the team can demonstrate effective oral care techniques and recommend specific products to address your individual concerns. These tips and tricks can be extremely beneficial for maintaining the health of your teeth, overall well-being, and your wallet in the long run.
The Benefits of Regular Dental Cleanings
- Brighter Smiles: A professional cleaning will address stains on the enamel that can cause discolored teeth.
- Removal of Plaque & Tartar: Dr. Markogiannakis will remove plaque and tartar from areas where a toothbrush and floss usually can’t reach. This helps prevent decay, infection, and disease.
- Fresher Breath: Professionally removing build-up will help freshen your breath.
- Boosts Your Oral Health: Professional dental cleanings will help improve and maintain your oral health, saving you money by preventing the need for more costly and invasive procedures in the future.
- Helps Us Track Your Oral Health: During your cleaning, we can identify any areas of concern in your mouth that may require special attention.
- Advice For At-Home Care: Based on what we find during your cleaning, our team can provide helpful tips on personalized at-home care.
Candidacy For Dental Cleaning
The American Dental Association (ADA) suggests that people schedule professional dental cleanings at least twice every year. However, depending on your level of oral health, you may need more frequent dental cleanings. Babies should receive their first dental cleaning before their first birthday or as soon as their first tooth erupts. At their first appointment, Dr. Markogiannakis will help you determine when your child is ready for a follow-up visit.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are dental cleanings covered by insurance?
Professional dental cleaning is considered a preventive procedure so it is usually covered by dental insurance. Our office will contact your insurance company to determine your specific coverage and then calculate any out-of-pocket costs. If you do not have dental insurance, please talk to your dentist about the different payments we accept, including medical financing.
How long does a dental cleaning take?
On average the exact time for a dental cleaning can take 30 minutes to an hour. However, the exact time for a dental cleaning will vary from patient to patient depending on numerous factors including the amount of buildup on the teeth and gums, the time it takes to give you advice on at-home care, and discussions of oral health issues and concerns.
Are professional dental cleanings painful?
Dental cleanings should not be painful. You may experience some slight discomfort during the process, especially if you have dental sensitivity. If you experience pain during a routine dental cleaning, be sure to tell your dentist or hygienist immediately. It may point to a problem your dentist can diagnose and treat.
How can I maintain good dental health between cleanings?
Between cleanings, you can maintain your oral health by brushing at least twice a day, flossing at least once a day, preferably before bedtime, and rinsing between meals. Your dentist and our dental team can give you more specific instructions on at-home oral health care during your cleaning.
Schedule Your Professional Dental Cleaning, Call Us Today!
Achieving and maintaining a healthy and bright smile is essential for your overall health and well-being. Regular professional cleanings are a vital part of a proactive dental care plan and can help prevent more extensive and expensive treatments down the line. At Smiles of Chevy Chase, our experienced dentist, Dr. Markogiannakis, and her team work closely with new and returning patients in Chevy Chase and surrounding areas such as Bethesda, Somerset, and Forest Hills, MD to improve and maintain their oral health.
Don't hesitate to contact our friendly front office team by dialing 301-652-0656 to schedule a professional dental cleaning for yourself and your family today. You can also fill out our contact form and one of our friendly team members will get back to you shortly. Let us help you keep your smile healthy and beautiful!