Periodontal Scaling and Root Planing
What is a Periodontal Scaling and Root Planing?
A scaling and root planing is sometimes called a deep cleaning because it aims to remove buildup and debris from both above and below the gum line. This type of cleaning is performed by a registered dental hygienist and is specific to patients who have gum disease. Gum disease causes the soft tissues around the teeth to separate from them. This causes pocketing to develop between the gums and the teeth themselves. In order to clean these pockets, we’ll perform a scaling and root planing.
Why might a Periodontal Scaling and Root Planing be needed?
The reason you might need a scaling and root planing is because you have gum disease. Gum disease affects nearly half of all adults over the age of 30. It is an incredibly common dental condition, but one that can be both prevented and treated. Over time, untreated gum disease can cause both tooth and bone loss, so it is important to consider treatment as soon as possible.
Who is a candidate for a Periodontal Scaling and Root Planing?
To determine if you have gum disease, we’ll perform a gum health check in our office. This involves using a small probe to measure the pocketing around each tooth. In general, if these pockets are deeper than about 3mm, we may recommend that you have a scaling and root planing. If you need this deeper cleaning, it is important to have it done as soon as possible to prevent progression of the disease.
What happens during a Periodontal Scaling and Root Planing?
We first numb one side of your mouth so that the deep cleaning is more comfortable for you. Our hygienist then uses special instruments known as scalers to clear away debris and tartar from above and below the gum line. The roots of the teeth will be smoothed in an attempt to help the gums heal more closely to them. You will need to come back in to have the other side of your mouth treated. Treatment of gum disease can help to prevent it from getting worse.
If you would like to learn more about a scaling and root planing, call us today so that one of our team members can further answer your questions.