Scaling and Root Planing
Gingivitis is one of the most prevalent dental problems among adults and young adults. It is a degenerative disease that causes severe infections and gum deterioration. When hearing the word ‘gingivitis’ a lot of people panic as an image of severely affected and irreparable teeth comes to mind. Moreover, although it is considered as a degenerative disease, gingivitis can be easily treated with dental scaling and root planning from the experienced professionals here at South Main Dental.
Dental Scaling or Root Planing: What’s the Difference?
A routine dental visit usually includes removing plaque buildup and tartar formation along the gum line. Scaling and root planning is considered as a non-invasive surgical procedure to correct severely affected teeth. Scaling and root planing is often called ‘deep cleaning’ since it targets the whole area around your teeth including the gum lines. Using a hand or ultrasonic instrument, dental scaling is an effective way of removing plaque buildup around the base of your teeth. It can be done manually to meticulously clean the area or using an ultrasonic device that uses sonic vibrations to remove the accumulation of plaque.
Root planing is a detailed scaling process used to reduce inflammation of the gums all the way down to the surface of your tooth’s root. Using a scaling device, it gently cleans the root surface to remove biofilm formation and plaque buildup. Unlike dental scaling, which only cleans the area around the gum line, root planing includes cleaning of the dental root to remove infectious organisms.
Initial Preparations for a Dental Surgery
If you have severely infected teeth or are suffering from periodontal disease, thoroughly cleaning the area first is the primary thing we will do. Dental scaling and root planing will remove any of the disease-causing bacteria that have invaded your mouth before any surgical procedures need to be done. Dental scaling and root planing need to be completed first before any actual surgery is done to ensure you do not get any other infections along the way. Depending on the severity of your dental condition or the recommendation you get from us, dental scaling and root planing is usually done over a time span of two or four visits for comfort and to ensure that all of the bacteria is removed.
The process of undergoing such treatment is also to prepare your mouth for the surgical procedure that needs to be done. Dental scaling or root planing is a considered as the “gold standard” for keeping your oral cavities free from harmful pathogens and other disease-causing infections.
Aftercare Tips for Dental Scaling and Root Planing
Because your teeth are cleaned from top to bottom, a slight discomfort is a normal occurrence, and sometimes tooth sensitivity develops lasting for a day or a week. Gum swelling and bleeding also happen in some cases, but this is part of the healing process. To prevent any other infections, our dentists will recommend using a special mouthwash or anesthetics to relieve the pain and lessen the swelling. Using a dose of medication directly inserted into the pockets of the gum line also helps to prevent further inflammation and reduce swelling.
It may take another visit to check if your gums and teeth have fully healed and so our dentists can measure the size of your dental pockets. Additional treatment may be needed if they have regressed or became deeper.
To find out more about dental scaling and root planing, simply give us a call here at South Main Dental by calling (662) 586-2311, or visit our dental office here in Pontotoc, MS.