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Why do your dentist and dental hygienist recommend that you have regular visits for scale and cleaning?

It is the key to maintaining healthy teeth and gums.

Some signs of poor gum health are:

  • Receding gums
  • Swollen, bleeding and sore gums
  • Bad breath
  • Loose teeth
  • Stained teeth
  • Foul taste in the mouth

These are signs of inflammation due to accumulation of plaque and calculus on your teeth and gums.



Dental plaque is a sticky biofilm forming on the surface of our teeth every day. It is made up of various bacteria existing in our mouth and in its early stage, it is soft, sticky and usually a creamy, white colour.

These bacteria interact with the food and drink we consume and release acids that may lead to dental cavities and gum inflammation. This is why it is important to brush and floss daily to remove plaque at regular intervals. If left undisturbed, the dental plaque matures and starts to form calculus, which can be more harmful to the supporting tissue ie: the gums and the bone around the teeth.



Calculus or Tartar is a hard, calcified build-up of dental plaque biofilm that cannot be removed by brushing or flossing. Calculus is effectively hardened plaque.

If any small amount of plaque is left on your teeth, eventually the minerals in your saliva will be deposited in the plaque, causing it to become calcified.

The rough and porous surface encourages more plaque attachment, so the calculus needs to be removed by a dental professional. This is the “scaling” part of a scale and clean.

The purpose of the cleaning and polishing is to remove plaque and calculus from the surfaces of the teeth so that you have a better chance of keeping the teeth clean during your regular home care regime.

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