Healthy Living

How often should you get your teeth cleaned?

We spoke to Medibank Members’ Choice Advantage dentist Dr Jonathan Cichero to find out.

Written by Editor Medibank

Alongside brushing and flossing, a professional check-up and dental clean should be an essential part of your oral hygiene routine. But how regularly should you be visiting the dentist’s chair?

How often should you get your teeth cleaned by a dentist?

“As a guide, twice a year for an examination and a clean of the teeth and gums is appropriate for the majority of the population,” says Dr Jonathan Cichero.

However, it’s important to note everyone’s situation is different.

“Some people have conditions that warrant more regular supervision and treatment than others,” he says. “There are also situations when a short course of repeated treatment is necessary, before routine follow up is required.”

As everyone’s needs differ, consult with your dentist about how often you should be going. Your dentist will consider various factors including your risk of tooth decay and gum disease, and the maintenance of any existing dental work.

Dr Cichero adds that any changes to your teeth and gums might be a sign to get a dental check-up.

“If you notice a change, get it checked by your dentist,” he says. “Unfortunately, things can change without us knowing, so regular monitoring is essential for catching any changes early, and minimising any problems.”

Woman smiling with teeth

Teeth. You’d literally suck without them.

Our 100% back on dental check-ups are just one of the ways you can get great value from our extras covers. Learn more about how extras cover can help you take control of your health & wellbeing.

How often should children get a dental check-up?

The Australian Dental Association (ADA) suggests children have their first dental check by their first birthday. Low risk children are then recommended to visit the dentist at least once per year, but again, it’s important to speak with your dentist about what your child may require.

Why are regular dental check-ups important?

Regular check-ups may identify any risk factors you may have, so preventive strategies can be put in place. Early detection of issues like tooth decay or gum disease may also make treatment easier.

Your dentist can also check for concerns such as whether you need replacement fillings or repair, and if any bad habits such as teeth grinding or smoking are causing issues.

“Our mouths, gums and teeth are the front-door to our bodies, and our entire health is affected by what we let through,” adds Dr Cichero. “Making sure this entrance is in the best condition possible will ensure our overall health is as good as it can be. So if we want our whole body to be healthy, it starts with regular maintenance and cleaning of our teeth and gums.”

What are the risks of not having your teeth regularly cleaned?

Even if you’re an expert brusher and flosser at home, a professional clean with a dentist is still necessary. Plaque can build up in difficult to reach corners of your mouth and solidify over time, causing calculus (also known as tartar). Calculus typically requires professional removal and left untreated, can lead to tooth decay, cavities and gum disease.

If problems are left undetected for too long, they can become worse over time and may lead to costly and invasive treatments later on.

How much is a dental clean?

The cost of a professional teeth clean can vary depending on several factors.

At Medibank, our 100% back on dental check-ups are just one of the ways you can get great value from our extras covers*. Learn more about how extras cover can help you take control of your health and wellbeing.

How do I find a Medibank Members’ Choice Advantage dentist?

If you’re a Medibank member with extras cover, you can search for your closest Members’ Choice Advantage dentist using our Find a Provider tool. 

Written by Editor Medibank

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Things you should know

* Members with Healthy Living Extras can get 100% back on one dental check-up each year at a Members’ Choice Advantage provider (including up to two bitewing x-rays, where clinically required) or at a Members’ Choice provider (excluding x-rays). Eligible members on Medibank extras (excluding Healthy Living Extras and Gold Ultra Health) can claim a maximum of two 100% back dental check-ups per member, per year at a Members’ Choice Advantage provider (including bitewing x-rays where clinically required). For members on eligible extras, the first two check-ups do not count towards your annual limit. Members with Gold Ultra Health can get 100% back on up to three dental check-ups at a Members’ Choice or Members’ Choice Advantage provider. Members’ Choice and Members’ Choice Advantage providers are not available in all areas. Two month waiting period applies for dental check-ups. Some products may have other dental benefits, check your cover summary for details.