Scaling and Polishing

Maintain good oral hygiene with Ocean Dental’s teeth cleaning services!

What is teeth scaling and polishing?

Scaling and polishing, also commonly known as teeth cleaning, is one of the most basic dental treatments. Despite brushing and flossing after every meal, plaque and tartar will still build up on your teeth after eating, resulting in serious gum diseases or tooth decay in the long run. Thus, it is necessary to go for routine check-ups and cleaning by dental professionals.

“Scaling” removes hardened plaque and tartar (calculus) stuck to your teeth using our ultrasonic scalers. This instrument removes unwanted dirt by knocking them out using its ultrasonic vibrations. It can remove tartar way faster than just using a manual hand scaler in the past.

“Polishing” on the other hand, is the use of a spinning polishing cup/brush to remove plaque and stains on the surface of your teeth. This procedure also smoothens out the external surfaces, making it harder for dirt to get attached to your teeth.

To end the scaling and polishing session, your dentist may apply a concentrated fluoridated gel on your teeth, if required. This gel comes in various flavours such as raspberry, and the purpose of this gel is to aid in the prevention of tooth decay by making the tooth more resistant to acid attacks from bacteria in our mouth.

scaling and polishing
teeth scaling

Why should I scale and polish my teeth?

​Dental plaque and calculus (or commonly known as tartar) consist of bacteria that can damage both your teeth and your gums.

The initial stage of gum disease is called Gingivitis. This is the initial stage where the gums’ inflammation occurs, causing your gums to look reddish and bleed easily. Without treatment, Gingivitis can lead to more severe gum disease called periodontitis.

There may be damage at the inner layer of the gums at this stage, causing your bone to pull away from your teeth, resulting in small pockets being formed. As gum disease worsens, the pockets deepen, and more gum tissue and bone get destroyed and loosens the teeth. This may eventually lead to tooth loss in the long run if not treated in time!

teeth cleaning

Is teeth polishing necessary?

Scaling removes all the dirt from your teeth, but polishing is the procedure that helps prevent and delay future attachment and accumulation of new dirt.

At Ocean Dental, we make use of the Prophy-Jet air-powder polishing system to improve the result. Air-powder polishing is a method of polishing the teeth using a concentrated spray of air, water, and very fine powder.

The pressure of this combination effectively removes bacterial plaque accumulation and extrinsic stains, leaving behind a smooth and polished surface.

Maintain good oral hygiene for better overall health!

Remove not just tartar on the visible surfaces, but also those hidden beneath your gums!

Eliminate stains for brighter and cleaner smile

Polished and smooth surface to delay new accumulation of tartar

Pain free polishing scaling experience with the help of local anesthesia if required


In the past, many people avoided scaling and polishing because they believe that scraping the teeth is bad, or because they experienced sensitivity or receding gums after treatment.

However, these are just common misconceptions. There is no cause for worries when you are in the hands of qualified professionals who are trained to perform this task without causing any harm to your teeth

The most common answer will be once every 4-6 months, but this may not always be true. Many factors determine how often you should have your teeth cleaned, and the most crucial factor will be your oral health condition.

The length of dental maintenance intervals is customized according to each individual’s oral health condition.

Remember, your dentist can only help you when you come for your appointment. Early intervention and preventive treatment is the best option to protect your teeth.

If done regularly, scaling and polishing is usually painless. The pain usually occurs when your gums are unhealthy. So if you want to avoid going through the “torture”, we strongly recommend you have it done regularly.

In some cases, if the discomfort is unbearable, you can always request for local anesthesia for a pain free polishing scaling experience.

Bleeding gums is a sign of gum inflammation (gingivitis or even periodontitis)! One common misconception is to stop or avoid brushing the bleeding area, but this will worsen it. When there is bleeding, you have to brush and keep the site clean to prevent further accumulation of bacteria in that region.

Using mouthwash or warm salt water may help ease the condition in the short term but to avoid progressing into a more severe condition, always visit your dentist to treat the bleeding gums issue as soon as possible.

Scaling and polishing is between $75 – $150, depending on existing oral hygiene.

Note: Government Goods and Services Tax (GST) applies.

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is classified mainly into Gingivitis and Periodontitis. Gingivitis is the early stage of gum disease and is caused by dental plaque or bacteria accumulating on the teeth, leading to the gum’s inflammation.

Common signs of Gingivitis include red and swollen gums, as well as bleeding when brushing.

If not treated in time, Gingivitis can progress into a “destructive” phase called periodontitis. The supporting tooth structure, such as the bone surrounding your teeth, erodes and causes your teeth to become loose. In severe cases, it may even result in tooth loss!

Gum disease is the infection of tissues that hold your teeth in place and is usually caused by poor tooth brushing and flossing, resulting in accumulating plaque.

Dental plaque begins to form on your teeth as quickly as 4 hours after brushing, and they start to harden into tartar within 48 hours! These plaque and tartar contain lots of bacteria, which are the main culprit in your teeth and gums’ inflammation and infection.

Still have questions about teeth cleaning?

Don’t hesitate to contact us!