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Gum disease can have significant negative effects on your overall health. Scaling and root planing is a non-surgical periodontal treatment that can treat gum disease by deeply cleaning the pockets between the gums and teeth where bacteria can build up. Dr. Brian J. Polidori performs scaling and root planing at our practice serving the Lakewood, CO, area. It is important to treat gum disease in its earliest stages so as to prevent the deterioration of your complete oral health. Dr. Polidori has many years of experience treating both gingivitis and periodontitis, and he can provide treatment and instruction on how to avoid the condition in the future.
Scaling and root planing can reverse the effects of gingivitis before your oral health deteriorates into periodontitis.
Scaling and root planing is typically performed as part of a deep cleaning. This procedure is very similar to a regular dental cleaning, but the gums are also numbed with a local anesthetic so the hygienist can clean deep into the gum line without causing any discomfort. Generally, scaling and root planing is recommended when you have deep periodontal pockets around your teeth. Each tooth has six surfaces which are measured in millimeters. The higher the measurement, the more bone loss you have in that area. Typically, you can effectively clean a one to three-millimeter pocket with routine home care. However, when the pockets become higher, they are more difficult for you to clean on your own. Even the most diligent brushing and flossing cannot reach a 7-millimeter pocket to properly clean it.
Scaling and root planing is a non-surgical periodontal treatment that can stop gum disease by deeply cleaning the pockets between the gums and teeth where bacteria can build up.
When left untreated, periodontal disease can cause damage to the gums and bone tissues, which can lead to tooth loss and chronic health problems. Gum disease has been linked to overall health concerns, such as heart disease, respiratory complications, and stroke. When there is infection and bacteria present in your mouth, it is also present in your bloodstream, and can be carried through your entire body.
The first step of scaling and root planing is to numb the gums using local anesthetic. Once you are comfortable, Dr. Polidori or our hygienist will begin the deep cleaning process. During the procedure, a combination of hand instruments and ultrasonic tools will be used to scale your teeth. This reaches under the gums to remove plaque and tartar from your teeth. A planing device will then be used to smooth the root surface of your teeth, allowing your gums to fit more snugly around the base of the tooth. This prevents additional bacteria from becoming trapped below the gum line. Because this is a non-surgical technique, stitches are generally not required.
Immediately following the procedure, you may notice slight sensitivity. You should be able to resume normal function the same day, although we do recommend eating softer, cooler foods until the numbing anesthesia wears off. In the weeks following your procedure, inflammation in your gums will decrease. After a few weeks of healing, Dr. Polidori will recheck the depth of the pockets and recommend an appropriate cleaning schedule to ensure your gums stay healthy. Patients with gum disease may require three to four routine cleanings a year (instead of the usual two per year) so as to keep gum disease in remission.
If you have noticed bleeding, swollen, or tender gums, you may be in the early stages of gum disease and you could benefit from scaling and root planing. Call Colorado Premier Dental at (303) 935-3465 or visit us online to schedule a consultation today.