Scaling & Root Planing
or Deep Cleanings
It is surprising that many people can have periodontal disease and not even know it! Chronic periodontal disease occurs when the bacteria in plaque cause your gums to pull away from your teeth. This causes large pockets to grow between your teeth and gums, and more bacteria can grow there that you cannot reach with teeth brushing at home.
A recent CDC report provides the following data related to prevalence of periodontitis in the U.S.: 47.2% of adults aged 30 years and older have some form of periodontal disease. Periodontal disease increases with age, 70.1% of adults 65 years and older have periodontal disease.
Scaling and root planing is beneficial to patients with chronic periodontitis removing the buildup of plaque and tartar from the teeth and roots. The area is numbed and the periodontist will access the root surface to remove plaque, bacterial toxins, and tartar. Root planning then smooths the rough patches on the roots’ surfaces to prevent future bacteria and plaque accumulation below the gumline, enabling gums to properly heal and reattach to the tooth.
However, many people do not notice any symptoms at all. That’s why it may come as a surprise when your dentist recommends scaling & root planing instead of a regular cleaning. It’s important to understand that this procedure is vital to getting periodontal disease under control and avoid future tooth loss, though other procedures including surgery may be required to treat the disease.
After a Deep Cleaning
After you’ve undergone a deep cleaning or periodontal surgery you’ll need to keep regular maintenance visits to maintain your gums and prevent the recurrence of gum disease. The dental cleanings recommended after these treatments are called “periodontal maintenance care”.
To ensure optimal oral health, and preserve the integrity of your teeth and gums, patients should visit the dentist every three months for periodontal maintenance. However, the exact intervals may vary depending on the precise condition of your gums.
Once you have been diagnosed with periodontal disease & have undergone scaling & root planing, periodontal maintenance is what you can think of as taking the place of prophylaxis in your dental care routine.
Rather than just addressing the crowns of your teeth as in prophylaxis, periodontal maintenance also cares for your tooth roots, gums & bone. In other words, think of it as cleaning & maintenance for the tissues affected by your periodontal disease. The frequency of your periodontal maintenance appointments depends on your individual oral health condition & will be determined by your dentist.
No matter what kind of cleaning you need, rest assured you will receive the highest-quality care at Altura Periodontics. We are an experienced team of dental health experts that will have you looking, and feeling, great about your oral health. Contact us to set up an appointment!