So, what’s the difference between a dental cleaning and root planing and scaling? If you have symptoms of gum disease, your dentist will want to stop it in its tracks with a deep cleaning. Root planing and scaling are deep cleanings that are prescribed by your dentist to help stop gum disease from progressing. This effective periodontal treatment is prevents periodontal disease from advancing and causing you serious health conditions. See how you can benefit from root planing and scaling today!
A dentist is trained to notice the signs of disease and decay with all the hard and soft tissues of your mouth. Your soft tissues include your gums, cheeks, tongue, lips and the lining of the inside of your mouth and neck. The hard tissues we are referring to are your teeth. Healthy gums are vitally important to the health of your mouth and even your teeth health. Your gums protect the roots of your teeth and prevent dangerous bacteria from reaching your bloodstream.
Your teeth are much bigger than what they look like, and go deep into your gums. The part that goes into your gums house delicate nerves and blood vessels that keep your teeth healthy. Gums protect this part of your teeth and hold them in place. However, if you don’t take care of your gums, they can recede, causing your teeth to fall out or to decay and causing health problems. This is why maintaining healthy gums is a necessary part of preserving your overall health.
You get plaque when sugars mix with bacteria in your mouth and stick to your teeth. When plaque sticks around too long (from not brushing or flossing enough), it causes cavities. However, not brushing and flossing plaque away can lead to gum problems as well. Over time, your gums will become red and irritated. They may even bleed easily, especially when you floss. This is the beginning of what we call “gum disease”. This first stage of irritation is known as “gingivitis”, and it’s a stage where we can easily reverse gum disease. Brushing and flossing more often (several times a day) will reverse the irritation and you will see your gums bleed less and less. You may think that gum disease is painful, but in fact, it is a silent killer for your teeth and gums.
In fact, many people don’t even know they have gum problems until gum disease is severe. If you continue to not brush and floss your teeth, or get help from a dentist, gum disease will progress. In the severe cases of this disease, your gums will continually recede until the teeth actually start to fall out. The gums will become mushy, won’t hold your teeth in place and teeth will continue to fall out after the first one. At this stage, there aren’t very many options for fixing your smile. That is why we invest our time in root planing and scaling with our patients with gum disease. We can fix problems and stop their progression before your teeth fall out.
During your appointment, we administer local anesthesia to help with gum discomfort during your root planing. This is where we use specialized instruments to remove plaque and tartar from your tooth roots and the surrounding gum pockets. Basically, root planing and scaling is a deep dental cleaning, and isn’t much different than our normal cleaning. However, we focus heavily on your gums and make sure to remove all the plaque in the gum area that is irritating and causing your gum disease.
We do this by using an ultrasonic scaling device that uses sonic vibrations as we scrape to remove stuck-on plaque and tartar. We then go right below the visible surface of your gums to smooth out our gum tissue, remove plaque under the surface and to remove biofilm development. That is the only part that patients don’t like. This deep cleaning (the scaling and root planing) is necessary when:
However, patients who receive this root planing and scaling will benefit from:
Did you know that millions suffer from gum disease and tooth loss? 64.7 million American adults have gum disease. 8.5% of those adults have severe gum disease with tooth loss. 30% have moderate and 8.7% have mild gum disease. Even though millions suffer from this disease, it’s one you never have to have! Brush and floss your teeth every single day. Come into our office several times a year for a comprehensive exam and cleaning.
If you have gum problems, we can use our root planing and scaling techniques to combat gum disease and save your smile. If you would like to learn more about root planing and scaling, call Family & Cosmetic Dentistry of the Rockies today at (970) 223-6101!