Scaling and Root Planing
When Is Scaling and Root Planing Recommended?
Although routine cleanings are done to prevent periodontally (gum) disease, scaling and root planing is a non-surgical procedure done to treat periodontal disease. In fact, this procedure – sometimes called a deep cleaning – is considered the "gold standard" of treatment for patients with chronic periodontitis.
Why do you need it?
Gum disease is caused by a sticky film of bacteria called plaque. Plaque is always forming on your teeth, but if they aren’t cleaned well, the bacteria in plaque can cause your gums to become inflamed. When this happens, your gums will pull away from your teeth and form spaces called pockets. Plaque then gets trapped in these pockets and cannot be removed with regular brushing. If untreated, gum disease could lead to bone and tooth loss.
If gum disease is caught early and hasn’t damaged the structures below the gum line, a professional cleaning should do. If the pockets between your gums and teeth are too deep, however, scaling and root planing may be needed.
Signs & Symptoms
- Swollen, red, tender or bleeding gums
- Gums that recede or move away from the tooth
- Persistent bad breath or bad taste in mouth
- Loose teeth
- Visible pus surrounding the teeth and gums