How much does dental cleaning cost?

Professional teeth cleaning has many benefits. The primary aim of regular professional teeth cleaning is to prevent gum disease, but this isn’t the only advantage. Professional teeth cleanings can also help prevent cavities, reduce stains or discoloration on teeth, freshen breath, and improve overall health. In addition to regular brushing and flossing, professional teeth cleaning is one of the most beneficial things you can do to increase your oral health and protect the strength and utility of your teeth and gums. The benefits of regular professional teeth cleaning are priceless. In most cases, dentists recommend having your teeth professionally cleaned twice a year, though some patients, such as those with advanced gum disease, may need more frequent cleanings.

A standard professional cleaning usually costs between $75-$200, depending on the individual dentist and on local standard rates. Additionally, in many cases, these professional teeth cleaning appointments may include one or more x-rays, as well as a consultation with the dentist. Depending on the number of x-rays required, these additional procedures can cost about $100, on top of the base rate for the professional cleaning. More extensive deep cleaning procedures, such as scaling and root planing, vary widely in cost, depending on the complexity of the procedure and the number of teeth that require the procedure. These procedures may cost anywhere from $500-$4000, and, in many cases, these more extensive procedures can be prevented by periodic cleanings. Your periodic professional teeth cleanings are often at least partly covered by dental insurance; in some cases, the more extensive procedures, like scaling and root planing, may be partly covered as well.

Your first professional teeth cleaning appointment at a new dentist’s office will usually require an x-ray, to help assess the overall health of the teeth and mouth. Periodic x-rays -- usually yearly -- are also recommended for returning patients and may be included in insurance coverage. During your professional teeth cleaning appointment, a dental hygienist, under the supervision of a dentist,  will use professional dental instruments to remove plaque and tartar from below and above the gumline on the surfaces of the teeth. Plaque is a sticky film, made up of bacteria, protein, and saliva, that covers the surfaces of the teeth. Regular brushing and flossing can keep plaque under control, but plaque that remains after brushing and flossing will harden and discolor, turning into tartar. Tartar can only be safely removed by using professional dental instruments. In some cases, the dentist may notice that your gums may be red or inflamed, or that they have begun pulling away from your teeth; in these cases, the dentist may determine that you need a deeper cleaning. Then, using a local anesthetic, and working over a series of office visits, the hygienist may also scale and plane your teeth, more extensively removing plaque and tartar and allowing the gums to reattach to the newly cleaned and prepared tooth surfaces. Gum disease usually doesn’t appear until people are in their 30s or 40s and may be exacerbated by cigarette smoking or other factors, but it can be prevented with regular brushing and flossing and periodic professional teeth cleaning.

More information on Teeth Cleaning : What is Dental Scaling?