Over 50 percent of adults in the United States suffer from periodontal (gum) disease. If you are among the many patients dealing with sensitive, bleeding gums or lingering bad breath, Drs. John M. Pinnix and George A. Betancourt can provide scaling and root planing treatments at our Charlotte, NC, practice. This deep cleaning procedure is one of the most effective methods for eliminating gum disease before it becomes severe and requires more extensive treatment. Reach out today to learn more about how scaling and root planing can help you regain your oral health.
Scaling and root planing is a common treatment for moderate cases of periodontal disease. Gum disease occurs when plaque builds up on teeth and causes severe inflammation of oral tissues, tooth roots, and sometimes even the jawbone. This often results in bleeding when brushing and flossing. When left untreated, the gums can begin to pull away from the teeth, exposing the sensitive tooth roots and eventually leading to tooth loss.
Deep cleaning is performed to eliminate settled plaque from the teeth and gums, as well as prevent future inflammation. Attentive dental care at home and regular cleanings are typically sufficient to prevent periodontal disease. However, patients who have not had their routine cleanings in some time are the most common candidates for scaling and root planing.
Depending on the severity of your case, Dr. Pinnix or Dr. Betancourt may administer a local anesthetic before beginning your procedure to minimize any potential discomfort. Sedation dentistry is available if you feel especially nervous. During your deep cleaning, your dentist will use manual or ultrasonic instruments to remove all of the built up plaque and tartar from your teeth, both above and below the gum line. Once your teeth and their supporting structures have been sufficiently cleaned, your doctor will begin to smooth out any rough surfaces along the tooth roots to prevent plaque from adhering to them in the future. While scaling and root planing are usually performed together during a deep cleaning, less severe cases may only require scaling.
Following your scaling and root planing procedure, your doctor may recommend an antibacterial mouthwash to help prevent any future buildup of plaque. It is very important to brush and floss your teeth regularly to help prevent any recurrence of periodontal disease. We also recommend that you discontinue all use of tobacco because smoking or using chewing tobacco reduces your ability to fight infection and increases the likelihood of developing or exacerbating gum disease. Dr. Pinnix or Dr. Betancourt may have you come in for a follow-up appointment to confirm that your teeth and gums are remaining healthy. You will also likely require regular cleanings more often following your scaling and root planing procedure, with each visit typically spaced about three months apart.
At Advanced Dentistry of Blakeney, we strive to enhance our patients’ quality of life through exceptional oral care. To learn more about how scaling and root planing can restore your oral health, contact our practice today.