Can I Get an Infection After A Dental Cleaning?

Medically Reviewed By
Jonathan G. Campbell, DDS, FAGD
One of the top rated Dentist in Salt Lake City, UT

Dental cleanings are essential for maintaining oral health, but some patients worry about the potential risks associated with the procedure. One common concern is, "Can I get an infection after teeth cleaning?" This article explores the possibility of infection following a dental cleaning, the signs to look out for, and ways to prevent and treat such infections.

Understanding Dental Cleaning

A dental cleaning involves the removal of plaque and tartar buildup from your teeth, teeth polishing to remove surface stains, and sometimes a fluoride treatment to strengthen your enamel. These procedures are designed to improve oral health and prevent dental issues such as cavities and gum disease.

Risk of Infection After Dental Cleaning

The risk of infection after teeth cleaning is generally low. However, certain factors can increase this risk, including pre-existing dental conditions, a compromised immune system, and poor oral hygiene practices. While infections are rare, it's important to be aware of the symptoms and take preventive measures.

Signs and Symptoms of Infection

Redness and Swelling: Persistent redness and swelling in your gums can indicate an infection.

Pain or Discomfort: Ongoing pain that doesn't subside with time.

Bleeding: Continuous bleeding that doesn’t stop after a reasonable period.

Pus or Discharge: Any pus or unusual discharge from the gums.

Fever and Fatigue: A high fever and feeling unusually tired can be signs of a systemic infection.

Prevention of Infection

To reduce the risk of infection after teeth cleaning, follow these preventive measures:

Proper Oral Hygiene: Brush your teeth twice a day, floss daily, and use mouthwash to keep your mouth clean.

Follow Post-Cleaning Care Instructions: Adhere to any specific advice given by your dentist, such as avoiding certain foods or activities for a short period.

Use Antiseptic Mouthwash: Rinsing with an antiseptic mouthwash can help eliminate bacteria.

Regular Dental Check-Ups: Maintain regular appointments to ensure ongoing oral health and address any potential issues early.

When to Seek Medical Attention

It's important to know when to seek professional help if you suspect an infection. Contact your dentist if you experience:

  • Persistent or severe symptoms
  • Symptoms that worsen over time
  • Presence of pus or discharge
  • High fever or other systemic symptoms
  • Early intervention can prevent complications and ensure proper treatment.

Treatment of Infection

If you develop an infection after teeth cleaning, your dentist will likely prescribe antibiotics to eliminate the bacteria causing the infection. In addition to professional treatment, you can take steps at home to alleviate symptoms:

Rinse with Warm Salt Water: This can help reduce swelling and discomfort.

Maintain Oral Hygiene: Continue brushing and flossing gently to keep your mouth clean.

Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water to help flush out toxins and support your immune system.


While the risk of infection after teeth cleaning is low, it's important to be aware of the potential signs and take preventive measures to protect your oral health. 

Following your dentist's instructions and maintaining a good oral hygiene routine can help ensure a smooth recovery and long-term dental health. Regular dental visits are crucial for catching and addressing any issues early, so don't skip those appointments!


No, infections are rare, but certain factors can increase your risk.

Maintain good oral hygiene, follow post-cleaning care instructions, and use antiseptic mouthwash.

Contact your dentist immediately for an evaluation and appropriate treatment.

Yes, but be gentle to avoid aggravating your gums. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and continue flossing carefully.

Legacy Dental blog is proudly run by our Salt Lake City dentists team; We share knowledge about general dental care and practices. Apart from running this blog, we offer various dental services such as general dentistry, emergency dentistry, and dental implants for the community in Salt Lake City, Utah

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