Professional teeth cleaning (prophylaxis): cost, procedure, duration

Professional teeth cleaning (PZR):
procedure & Use

Professional teeth cleaning (PZR):
procedure & Use

If you want to keep your teeth and gums healthy, you can do them regularly Professional teeth cleaning reliably prevent a number of common risks. Combined with daily, thorough dental care at home, this form of regular prophylaxis not only offers protection against caries infections, but also against the widespread inflammation of the tooth structure, the so-called periodontitis – as well as against other diseases of the teeth and the oral cavity.

What is professional teeth cleaning?

Professional tooth cleaning, or PZR for short, is a particularly thorough form of cleaning teeth and interdental spaces in several steps. The duration of this prophylaxis session depends on the amount of plaque and discoloration to be removed, but is usually sufficient 30 to 60 minutes.

During this prophylaxis appointment in the dental practice, the interdental spaces and the area behind the last molars, which are difficult to access in everyday life, are also cleaned using special procedures.

Professional tooth cleaning consists of:

  • Removal of dental plaque both on the enamel and on any exposed tooth roots
  • thorough cleaning of the interdental spaces
  • Removal of plaque (microbial deposits)
  • Polish the tooth surfaces
  • Fluoridation of the teeth for lasting protection against tooth decay
  • Professional tips for oral hygiene at home

PZR: care and medical prophylaxis in one

Those who consume coffee, tea, cigarettes, red wine or the like on a regular basis can generally only remove the accumulated deposits with difficulty with daily oral hygiene. Professional tooth cleaning, which is carried out in the practice by specially trained specialist staff, can reliably remedy this.

Plaque, called plaque, can develop into gingivitis under certain conditions. Such gum inflammation can be stopped independently by thorough cleaning. If, on the other hand, the acid-producing bacteria multiply and minerals are stored in them, so that tartar develops, the harmless inflammation can become periodontitis. This, in turn, urgently needs to be treated by a dentist if the tooth holding apparatus is not to be put in danger.

Professional teeth cleaning procedure

A PZR consists of several steps, which in combination keep the teeth, the interdental spaces and thus the gums healthy. In detail, these are the following measures.

Process of the PZR: staining dental plaque

The PZR usually begins with a so-called staining of the teeth by the dental hygienist: using a special stain, he can see which teeth have plaque on them – the harmful plaque. This step is also a kind of inventory, as it is for your individual oral hygiene. This step is particularly useful for you, because by making the plaque areas visible you can see where you should be even more careful when brushing your teeth in order to avoid plaque even better in the future.

Procedure of the PZR: Remove tartar

One of the central concerns of prophylaxis is the thorough cleaning of teeth, any fillings and crown margins, as well as all accessible surfaces of tooth roots, carried out by specialist personnel. Both hard and soft dental plaque are removed, such as discoloration caused by nicotine and / or red wine, coffee, tea etc..

The hard plaque is better known under the term tartar: it is calcified plaque that has remained over a longer period of time. If the tartar is not removed, bacteria can accumulate and multiply over time, thereby promoting inflammation of the gums, which in turn can lead to periodontitis, which is not harmless.

Tartar cannot be removed independently with the toothbrush – it is reliably removed from the entire mouth during the PZR.

Process of the PZR: Airflow cleaning

Because special instruments are used for a PZR, even hard-to-reach areas can be cleaned and cared for, where otherwise the harmful plaque can stick: e.g. above the gum line as well as in the so-called gingival pockets and behind the last molars.

The soft discolorations, which are mainly caused by food and beverages, are often removed with special powder blasting devices. One possible application is the so-called airflow method. This and other powder blasting devices can remove even difficult-to-reach angles of the teeth from discoloration with a mixture of water, air and special salts applied under high pressure. However, this process should be avoided with exposed tooth necks.

Process of the PZR: Clean and dry with air and water

Even stubborn stains can be removed with regular professional tooth cleaning. After completing the cleaning of soft and hard deposits on the surfaces and in hard-to-reach places, the entire cleaned mouth is rinsed with water and then dried with a light blower.

Process of the PZR: polishing

After removing plaque and discoloration, the tooth surfaces are polished thoroughly. This polish primarily prevents resettlement of coverings – since these adhere poorly, the smoother the surface they offer.

Not only the teeth, but also, for example, transitions from fillings can be smoothed, so that they also do not get affected by harmful plaque in the period until the next PZR.

Process of the PZR: fluoridization

The so-called fluoridation is also an important part of completing every PZR, because the fluoride applied to the teeth prevents minerals from being lost from the tooth enamel. This will make the tooth enamel more resistant to acids, making caries disease less likely.

Summary – Process of a professional tooth cleaning:

  • Removal of tartar and removal of dark stains by coffee, tea, red wine, nicotine
  • Removal of plaque
  • Polish the tooth surfaces including the interdental spaces
  • Prevention of tooth decay using fluoride
  • Tips and exercises from the specialist staff for improved oral hygiene at home

How often is prophylaxis with professional teeth cleaning necessary??

More generally, a PZR can be scheduled with any medical check-up that two times a year should take place. In this way, not only discoloration but also pathogens for possible diseases of the teeth or gums can be eliminated at an early stage.

How often a follow-up treatment should be planned – for example in the case of previous gum disease – varies from patient to patient – but it is usually a question of an interval of three months up to half a year.

Especially if long-term success is to be ensured following periodontitis therapy, repeated follow-up appointments per year are advantageous to prevent tartar formation in the gum pockets at an early stage. Otherwise, the acid-forming germs in the harmful plaque can multiply so much that a new inflammation arises.

Summary: When is professional teeth cleaning necessary??

  • When inflammation of the gums needs to be treated
  • When tooth stains should be removed
  • When bad breath has developed
  • If treatment of the gums is advisable to prevent periodontitis
  • When regular aftercare is necessary after periodontitis or another tooth and / or mouth disease

What does professional tooth cleaning cost??

The costs for a PZR are different because they are calculated by the dentists themselves. Usually, however, the price is between 60 and 120 euros.

As a rule, the costs, insofar as it is purely cosmetic prophylaxis, are not a cash benefit. Depending on the fund – and private supplementary insurance – a subsidy can be paid.

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Christina Cherry
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