How often should you get a cleaning?
For perfect teeth, 6 months, for everyone else, at least 4 months.
People with perfect teeth
Well, there is a basic minimum frequency, and the answer to that should be every 6 months. Now let me tell you, this minimum is for a patient that has zero problems. No bone loss, no gum loss, no recession, no spaces between teeth, no crowded teeth.
For example, if you were a teenager, the bone around your teeth would be pretty healthy. It most likely would not have enough time to deteriorate yet. So for a teenager, cleanings every six months would be fine.
For everyone else
When you do have any form of bone loss, however, you should really get your teeth cleaned at least every 4 months. The worst the bone loss, the more frequent your cleanings. You have to understand that bone loss around teeth in general is pretty much irreversible. As you can see in the diagram above, when bone is lost more space is available for bacteria to invade into. The more bacteria that is present, the more your own body wants to remove your tooth by dissolving more bone leading to a destructive cycle of bone.
Still, what can one cleaning every 3 or 4 months achieve, my mouth will get dirty again anyways!
Biofilm, Biofilm, Biofilm. Bacteria attract different bacteria. These different bacteria become a community. These communities create a protective layer that covers the whole community called a biofilm. Biofilm prevents chemical penetration from things like mouth rinses, or toothpastes and even antibiotics. These communities take time to build. The only way to get rid of biofilm is to mechanically disturb it. When you brush and floss, there are going to be areas that is impossible to get to, your professional cleaning will get there and be able to destroy biofilm. If left alone, more bone loss can be triggered by your body’s response. When biofilm is destroyed, then your body gets a chance to reset itself back to normal.