About Scaling and Root Planing
The initial stage of treatment for periodontal disease is usually a thorough cleaning that may include scaling or root planing. The objective of these non-surgical procedures is to remove etiologic agents such as dental plaque and tartar, or calculus, which cause gingival inflammation and disease. Scaling and root planing can be used as a stand-alone treatment, or a preventative measure. They are commonly performed on cases of gingivitis and moderate to severe periodontal disease. Please contact Northeast Periodontal Specialists in Worcester, MA to learn more about scaling and root planing treatment.
"The entire care team at Northeast Periodontal were nothing short of amazing. From consultation to the end result, I always felt that Dr. Rafla and the entire team was there to make me feel comfortable, ensured that all my questions were answered, and they had my best interest in mind. I hope I don’t have to go there again, but if a friend needed their services, I would absolutely recommend them to the practice."- K.P. / Google / Jan 25, 2023
"Dr Rafla and his staff are nothing but professional. He is a talented oral surgeon, did implants for my Front teeth. He uses the best anesthetics, I did not feel anything when he worked on me. lf you use him for anything you won't regret it."- D.M. / Google / Jan 04, 2023
"Knowledgeable, caring, efficient practice. The office staff is helpful and well informed. All of the hygienists are thorough. Dr Rafla is a superb periodontist who is up-to-date on current research and practices and provides excellent care."- M.L. / Google / Oct 08, 2022
"Starting with Tamara in reception, the entire visit was excellent. . Heidi the hygeniest gave me a thorough and careful cleaning and advised me on additional oral device accessories. Thanks to all."- C.C. / Google / Sep 30, 2022
"Very nice staff, really explained everything and Dr Rafla is great!!"- J.R. / Google / Sep 17, 2022
What Does it Entail?
Our periodontal team will only perform scaling and root planing after a thorough examination of the mouth, which may include taking x-rays and visually examining the mouth. Depending on the condition of the gums, the amount of tartar present, the depth of the pockets, and the progression of periodontitis, our periodontists may recommend scaling and root planing. In some cases, local anesthesia may be used during the procedure.
When scaling is performed, calculus and plaque that attaches to the tooth surfaces are removed. The process especially targets the area below the gum line, along with the root. Scaling is performed with a special dental tool called an ultrasonic scaling tool. The scaling tool usually includes an irrigation process that can be used to deliver an antimicrobial agent below the gums to help reduce oral bacteria.
Root planing is performed in order to remove cementum and surface dentin that is embedded with unwanted microorganisms, toxins, and tartar. The root of the tooth is literally smoothed, which promotes healing, and also helps prevent bacteria from easily colonizing in the future.
Antibiotics or irrigation with anti-microbials (chemical agents or mouth rinses) may be recommended to help control the growth of bacteria that create toxins and cause periodontitis. In some cases, our periodontal specialists may place antibiotic fibers in the periodontal pockets after scaling and planing. This may be done to control infection and to encourage normal healing.
When deep pockets between teeth and gums are present, it is difficult for our periodontal team to thoroughly remove plaque and tartar. Patients can seldom, if ever, keep these pockets clean and free of plaque. Consequently, surgery may be needed to restore periodontal health.
The Benefits of Treatment
If treatment is successful, scaling and planing may have many periodontal benefits. One is that it can help prevent disease. Research has proven that bacteria from periodontal infections can travel through the bloodstream and affect other areas of the body, sometimes causing heart and respiratory diseases. Scaling and root planing removes bacteria that cause these conditions.
Another benefit of treatment is protecting teeth against tooth loss. When gum pockets exceed 3mm in depth, the risk for periodontal disease increases. As pockets deepen, more bacteria are able to colonize, eventually causing a chronic inflammatory response by the body to destroy gingival and bone tissue. This leads to tooth loss.
Finally, scaling and root planing may make the mouth more aesthetically appealing, and should reduce bad breath caused by food particles and bacteria in the oral cavity. Superficial stains on the teeth will be removed during scaling and planing, adding an extra bonus to the procedures. If you feel you may need scaling and root planing treatment, please schedule a consultation at Northeast Periodontal Specialists in Worcester, MA.
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