If you are like most people, you know how important it is to regularly brush and floss your teeth. You have probably made it a habit to completely clean your mouth after a meal by brushing the teeth well and rinsing the gums thoroughly.


Did you know that regular brushing and flossing are not enough to keep your teeth and mouth healthy?

Why are Regular Brushing and Flossing Not Enough to Keep Teeth Healthy?

If you are like most people, the task of brushing your teeth is an automatic subconscious process. There is a good chance that you put more effort into brushing the front teeth, but less so in cleaning back teeth you cannot see. After all, the teeth you cannot see are naturally difficult to clean even if you carefully clean each tooth.


Consequently, there are parts of the teeth where the bristles of the toothbrush will not clean properly. Microscopic layers of food particles and the bacteria that live on them may be left in the tight spaces between the teeth and small spaces between the teeth and the gums.

There is another problem. Even with regular brushing and flossing, there will always be some amount of food deposits and other debris stuck to the teeth that the brush cannot remove. Over time, these particles form tartar and plaque deposits that may not even be visible in the mirror. This is why a professional dental cleaning is so necessary.

Tartar and Plaque Deposits: What Are They and How do They Form?

You already know that the human mouth is home to many kinds of microorganisms, most of them bacteria. These organisms live off macroscopic pieces of food, mainly starch and sugars, left in the mouth.

Bacteria form a sticky film that covers the surface of teeth called plaque. After eating, the bacteria produce acidic waste that can harm the enamel (outer layer of the tooth) in as little as 20 minutes after eating. The acid wears down the enamel, causing decay of the tooth and enabling other dental complications.

When plaque is left on the teeth for too long, it hardens and becomes tartar. Tartar can get so hard that it becomes the unsightly outermost layer of the teeth, completely covering or replacing enamel. After it forms, tartar is hard to remove even with regular brushing and teeth whiteners. The plaque will continue to build up over the tartar, increasingly coating the teeth and even irritating the gums. If the situation is not remedied, it can eventually lead to loss of teeth gum disease.



How Does Regular Teeth Cleaning Help?

When you go to a clinic to get your teeth cleaned, the dental hygienist or dentist will use a special procedure and tools to remove the tartar and plaque deposits. Teeth cleaning is a preventive measure that significantly improves the health and appearance of your teeth. Here are the three core benefits of regular dental cleanings in Greer, SC that you should know.

1. Removal of Plaque and Tartar

The main reason why health professionals recommend that you get your teeth cleaned every six months is to prevent a buildup of plaque and tartar. Brushing alone cannot remove all the microorganism build up on the teeth and may lead to overall health complications. According to the American Dental Association, getting your teeth cleaned will not only give you healthy teeth but may also go a long way to prevent heart diseases, stroke, and arterial blockages,

There are different techniques dentists use to remove plaque and tartar on teeth. One of the most efficient methods we use at Carraway Dentistry is to scrape the plaque and tartar off using a small tool that reaches every part of every tooth. If you have sensitive teeth, we can also use ultrasonic cleaning technology to break up the buildup with water and sound vibrations.

2. Physical Examination of the Mouth

The first step of dental cleaning is often a thorough and complete examination of the mouth. A dentist will examine your teeth's overall health and look out for any brown or black spots that precede a cavity and any holes or fractures in the teeth. If there are any forming cavities, there is no better time to catch them than during regular teeth cleaning sessions. If cavities are not caught and treated early enough, you may end up needing the costly and painful root canal procedures just to keep your teeth.

Have you noticed any potential problems in your oral and overall health to which you need answers? The best time to ask them is during an oral exam. For instance, if your gums get irritated regularly despite regular teeth cleaning, you may want to ask the dentist what irritates them and how you can minimize or prevent it altogether. This is the best way to maintain healthy teeth.

Other important questions you can ask your dentist during a teeth cleaning session are:

  • How can I prevent gum diseases?

  • Why are my teeth sensitive to cold foods or drinks?

  • Is my current oral hygiene routine effective? How can I improve it?

  • How effective is a mouthwash? Can I use it to kill bacteria and minimize plaque and tartar?

  • Am I grinding my teeth without realizing it? How best can I prevent this?

3. Prevent Severe Health Conditions

Depending on your oral health, the dentist should guide you on the best practices to keep your teeth and gums healthy during a teeth cleaning session. They may also recommend other tests such as X-rays when there are potential problems that traditional examination does not reveal. A dentist in Greer will also carry out "periodontal screening," a process of examining and testing the gums to identify any potential diseases or complications.

Teeth cleaning is a sure way to avoid future pain and expensive health problems that can be detected and remedied early. Regular teeth cleaning will help you detect and prevent health problems, including cardiovascular issues, oral cancers, periodontitis, gingivitis, and bad breath, among others.

Final Thoughts

While there is no fixed number of teeth cleanings a person should get every year, two is recommended for people aged 50 and below with good oral hygiene to maintain healthy teeth. People with existing dental or oral problems or those aged over 50 may need to get their teeth cleaned more frequently.

When you visit your dentist, you should make it a point to get professional advice on the number of times you need a dental cleaning and complete oral checkup. If your visit to the dentist is long overdue, schedule a cleaning online at Carraway Family & Cosmetic Dentistry with a friendly dentist in Greer. Be proactive in improving your dental health.

  • Adam Carraway

As anyone that has ever had a toothache can tell you, dental pain can be one of the most excruciating and debilitating types of pain you can experience. The reason teeth can cause such a high level of pain has to do with the source of the pain and its relation to a significant nerve branch called the Trigeminal Nerve.


A toothache is typically caused when a dental cavity or tooth decay becomes so large that it reaches the nerve inside the tooth. Dental decay is the breakdown of tooth structure, and it can cause a void or hole in the tooth. When this hole reaches the nerve inside the tooth, the nerve can be exposed to air. This causes a sharp, excruciating pain that can lead to a dental emergency. With preventative measures such as dental fillings, crowns, and dental cleanings, these dental emergencies can be avoided.


When a toothache occurs, our dental team will evaluate the area for swelling and pressure sensitivity. After taking a dental x-ray, our team will be able to identify the cause of the tooth pain and recommend corrective action. When a tooth has started to cause severe pain, treatment options typically involve saving the tooth with a root canal and crown, or removing the teeth. It is almost always cheaper and easier to save a tooth than to have to replace it later on with a dental implant or bridge.


Less severe types of dental pain include cold sensitivity or biting pain. Dental sensitivity related to cold water or air can have a number of causes. Sensitivity is caused by a lack of protection between the outer layer of the tooth and the nerve inside the tooth. This can occur when the gums shrink back in gingival recession, from recent teeth whitening, from a recent filling, or from a cavity.


When gum recession is present, the root surface is exposed, leading to tooth sensitivity. The root surface does not have enamel covering the surface and can be more sensitive than the upper surface of the tooth. Treatment options for this type of sensitivity include gum grafts or dental fillings. Sensodyne Toothpaste can offer short term relief for hypersensitivity.


If you are having a dental emergency, we have a 24 hour hotline where you can speak with our dentist on call. You can also schedule an emergency consultation through our online booking website.

Options for dental pain in Greer, SC

If you are considering replacing missing or broken teeth with dental implants, we would love to offer you a complimentary consultation to go over your treatment options. While we do everything we can to save your natural teeth, dental implants can be an incredible option to replace missing or failing teeth.


A dental implant is an artificial root that is engineered to replicate the tooth root that it replaces. Dental implants come in a number of different shapes and sizes; it is important for the implant to replicate the tooth that is being replaced.


At your initial implant consultation, our experienced team will begin by reviewing your medical history. Diabetes, tobacco use, and certain medications can impact the success of dental implants, so it is important for our team to record a thorough medical history.


Next, we will complete an oral exam where we will look at the condition of your remaining teeth and gums. Healthy periodontal tissue, also known as your gum tissue, is very important for long lasting dental implants because your gum tissue provides a protective barrier against oral bacteria.


After completing a diagnostic checklist, our dentists will discuss what your end goal is and how we can help you achieve that result. At this point, we will formulate a treatment plan that will include a timeline and financial obligations for treatment. We accept most dental insurances, and our financial coordinators will discuss your options prior to making any commitments.


As part of the treatment plan, we often recommend a 3D x-ray that will allow us to digitally plan the implant procedure. This technology allows for a better implant, fewer complications, a quicker procedure, and quicker healing time. After placing the implant, it takes the body four months to fuse to the titanium surface. Once the body has healed to the implant, a porcelain crown can be placed on the implant.


Hundreds of implant companies manufacture implants today. It is important to know what brand of dental implant is being placed by your dentist. We are proud to place Nobel Implants because they have the research and support to ensure a long lasting tooth replacement.


Dr. Adam Carraway completed an intensive General Practice Residency at the Dental College of Georgia where he trained extensively in the placement of dental implants. He is knowledgeable in many aspects of dentistry and able to discuss the best treatment options available in modern dentistry.



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Hours

 Monday: 8:00 AM-6:00 PM 

Tuesday: 8:00 am-5:00 PM

Wednesday: 8:00 am-5:00 PM

Thursday: 7:00-3:00 PM

Friday: 8:00-12:00 PM (Alternating)

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2104 Old Spartanburg Rd, Greer, SC 29650, USA