There are many tools that your dentist uses that look scary, but they really are not when you know what they do. Here is a closer look at a commonly used dentistry tool known as the ultrasonic scaler. While not all dentists may use an ultrasonic scaler, it is becoming more common these days and frequently used for dental cleanings.
How Does An Ultrasonic Scaler Work?
The ultrasonic scaler tool has a handpiece that is connected to a water line. It allows a scaler tip to be attached to it, which sprays out water and helps clean your teeth. The dentist can control the ultrasonic scaler with a foot pedal so that pressurized water exits the handpiece and blasts away the plaque and tartar on your teeth. One of the unique things about the ultrasonic scaler is that it uses vibrations and water to essentially spray away bacteria from the crevices around your gums and between your teeth.
Does The Ultrasonic Scaler Hurt?
The ultrasonic scaler is one of the more gentle ways to clean the surface of your teeth, especially when compared to hand scaling equipment that involves a slot of scraping. Some people that have gum recession or gum disease may find the ultrasonic scaler causes their teeth to become more sensitive. However, the dentist can adjust the amount of pressure that is used with the ultrasonic scaler so that it is more comfortable for you.
Will Hand Scaling Equipment Still Be Used?
The ultrasonic scaler is designed to get the majority of the plaque and tartar off your teeth. However, it is still no match for using the hand scaler. Expect your dentist to clean all of your teeth using an ultrasonic scaler, and then follow up on those hard-to-reach areas with a hand scaler. For example, the dentist may need to get into deep pockets of your gums that the ultrasonic scaler is struggling with, or you simply have a lot of tartar on the surface of your teeth that needs some close attention with hand instruments.
Does It Cost More To use An Ultrasonic Scaler?
Your cleaning should not change in price based on which instruments the dentist decides to use. Using an ultrasonic scaler should not come at a premium price, since it is a modern dental tool that is used to get your teeth clean more efficiently.
Ask your dentist if you have questions about the ultrasonic scaler.