What Is The Difference Between A Regular Dental Cleaning And A Deep Cleaning?

deep-cleaningDental cleanings are performed to help keep your teeth clean and healthy, which means free from bacterial plaque and tartar. Certain bacteria in your mouth feed on leftover food debris and sugars from foods and beverages, and in the process multiply and produce harmful enamel-eating acids. The bacteria and acids mix with your saliva and create sticky, clear plaque. We brush at least twice a day to remove plaque and protect our teeth from decay. However, if left untreated the plaque hardens into tartar which cannot be removed by brushing and flossing. Instead, we visit the dentist twice a year for a professional cleaning during which your dentist or hygienist removes the plaque and tartar from your teeth.

Deep Cleaning

While a regular dental cleaning and a deep cleaning do the same thing–they both remove plaque and tartar from your teeth–what is different is that a deep cleaning cleans the roots of your teeth behind your gum, or gingival tissue. If you do not brush and floss properly, or frequently enough, bacteria can migrate from the crown of your teeth underneath your gums. Left untreated, this can develop into gingivitis and eventually periodontal disease, the major cause of tooth loss. A deep cleaning, also referred to as scaling and root planing, can help prevent this.

Ultrasonic Technology

When a deep cleaning is necessary, it is more extensive than a traditional dental cleaning. Therefore, rather than use traditional dental tools to scrape the plaque and tartar from your teeth, we utilize ultrasonic technology. Because this technology “breaks up” the cement-like tartar deposits it is faster, more efficient, and more comfortable treatment.


With decades of professional dental care experience, native of Kansas City, Robert M Browne, DDS is proud to provide general, cosmetic, restorative, and prosthetic care to patients from Prairie Village and surrounding communities. To learn more or to schedule a visit with Dr. Browne, contact our office today at (913) 901-8585.