Periodontal Scaling and Root Planing

Scaling is a procedure that meticulously removes contamination toxins, micro-organisms, plaque, tartar, cementum, dentin that is rough and/or permeated by calculus from around, below and under the gum line down to the bottom of the pocket. This is done to remove biofilm, calculus, and toxin down to the bottom of each periodontal pocket in order to obtain a healing response.

Root Planing
Because this procedure goes deeper than a regular cleaning, your mouth may be numbed. Depending on the extent of the disease you may need one or more sections (quadrants) of the mouth to treated with scaling and root planing. Treatment may require one or more visits.

Root planing involves smoothing the root surfaces of your teeth with thin curettes so gum tissue can firmly reattach. The procedure makes it more difficult for plaque to accumulate along the root surfaces.

Home Care After Root Planing and Scaling

Be careful not to bite or chew your lip, cheek or tongue while they are numb. Avoid chewing for 2 hours after this procedure or until numbness has worn off.

In most cases patients experience no discomfort or at the most, mild discomfort. If this should occur the following is suggested:

  • Rinse with warm salt water every few hours (1/2 tsp. salt in 8oz water) to encourage healing and sooth discomfort.
  • If your dentist has prescribed a mouth rinse such as Perioguard (Chlorhexidine) use it as directed on the bottle.
  • Gently brush and floss your teeth after each meal.
  • Use your Chlorhexidine and fluoride as instructed to keep the area clean and free of the bacteria that causes plaque and calculus build-up during the healing period.
  • Since you have periodontal disease it is advised that you disinfect or change your toothbrush head between brushing to prevent self infection from periodontal germs that remain on your toothbrush for 4 hours or more after use.
  • If mild discomfort does occur using Tylenol or Ibuprofen is suggested. If swelling is noticed or if discomfort continues for more than 36 hours please notify our office.
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