The Importance of Scaling and Root Planing in Periodontal Therapy

Gum disease is a prevailing dental problem caused by plaque and calculus. If you develop gum disease, consult the family dentist in Leesburg, and their dedicated team of oral hygienists for further evaluation and management. They may offer a comprehensive approach to remove calculus and treat inflamed gums through scaling and root planing. These procedures help chip off hard calculus that is impossible through regular brushing and flossing. 

If you want to know more about scaling and root planing, scroll down to read this informative blog. 

An insight into scaling and root planing

Scaling and root planing are professional deep cleanings that help remove plaque and hard calculus that can stick to your teeth. You may require these treatments if you suffer from gum or periodontal disease. 

Scaling involves the removal of calculus from the surface of your teeth, while root planing involves the removal of calculus from the roots of your teeth below the gum line. 

What to expect before scaling and root planing? 

Your dentist will initially evaluate your oral cavity to determine the amount of calculus present. They conduct a detailed oral examination to assess the gum deterioration in the form of gingival pockets. Special probes are used to measure the pocket to determine the amount of bone loss. This is further confirmed through oral radiographs. 

What to expect during scaling and root planing?

Your dentist or oral hygienist will use a vibrating tool called an ultrasonic scaler to perform the scaling process. 

Scaling involves the following steps:

  • A vibrating metal tip on the scaler will chip off the calculus from your teeth’s surfaces. 
  • A water spray from the scalar washes away the calculus, and flushes plaque from the gingival pockets. 
  • The remaining small pieces of calculus will be removed using a manual scaler and a curette (a scraping device). 

Root planing is similar to scaling but takes place on the roots of the teeth below the gum line. 

During root planing, your dentist will:

  • Use a tool to gently push aside your gum tissues and expose your root surfaces. 
  • Use the same scaling tools to chip the calculus and make them smooth
  • Inject an antibiotic solution into the gingival pockets

Final thought

Gum disease can deteriorate, negatively impacting your oral health and aesthetics. Untreated cases can cause further damage resulting in loss of attachment and tooth mobility. Seek dental care when you notice signs of gum disease like bleeding, swollen, or inflamed gums. Since gum disease at an early stage can be easily reversed through scaling and root planing. 

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