Root Planing and Scaling

An active, mature couple, featuring a blonde woman in a blue striped tank top and a man with salt-and-pepper hair and a pink polo shirt, lean against each other and laughAre your gums tender, puffy, and inflamed? Do you suffer from chronic bad breath? If so, it might be time to consider a deep cleaning treatment: root planing and scaling. At Smile Solutions by Emmi Dental Associates, we’re proud to help our Wilmington patients achieve better dental health through root planing and scaling. But what exactly is this restorative dentistry procedure, and what can it do for you?

What Is the Root Planing and Scaling Process?

While most patients are familiar with the routine tooth cleaning and polishing that takes place during their checkups every six months, not as many are familiar with root planing and scaling. If your dentist recommends that you undergo this deep cleaning treatment, the most common first question is: what exactly is root planing and scaling?

Root planing and scaling actually consists of two separate procedures, but they are often performed in tandem with the end goal of restoring your gums to a state of better health. Because treatment addresses plaque and bacteria underneath the gum line, the process is sometimes referred to as “deep cleaning,” and your dentist may administer a local anesthesia to prevent any discomfort.

Scaling – The first of the two procedures that your dentist will perform is scaling. This procedure is quite similar to a more routine teeth-cleaning procedure, with your dentist scraping away plaque and tartar from the tooth surface. What separates scaling from a more routine procedure is that it also involves using special tools to clean and remove plaque and tartar from more hard-to-reach surfaces around and underneath the gum line.

Root Planing – Inflammation and gingivitis can easily flare up again if bacteria are given a chance to build up and take hold beneath the gum line. The purpose of a root planing procedure is to make it more difficult for bacteria to gain that foothold. With root planing, your dentist will smooth down the surface of your teeth at the tooth roots and around the gums, buffing away all of the grooves and crevices.

Why Should I Consider Root Planing and Scaling?

Because root planing and scaling is not as well known as dental fillings or root canal therapy, some patients may question whether the procedure is necessary. So why should you consider pursuing root planing and scaling treatments?

The truth is that root planing and scaling is a restorative procedure offering some clear-cut benefits to improve your dental health. A deep cleaning can go a long way toward curbing the progression of gingivitis and periodontal disease. If left unchecked, periodontal disease can cause serious overall health problems, including tooth loss. What’s more: along with its important medical benefits, root planing and scaling can boost your confidence by improving your breath and the appearance of your smile.

Talk to Your Dentist about Root Planing and Scaling Today

If your gums have been red and inflamed, and your normal daily dental hygiene routine and regular professional teeth cleaning hasn’t helped, it may be time for more intensive treatment. Root planing and scaling can be an important step toward better dental and oral health. Our team at Smile Solutions by Emmi Dental Associates specializes in both cosmetic and restorative dentistry. Contact our dental care office to schedule an appointment today.