Scaling and Root Planing
aka Deep Cleaning
Why is it called a deep cleaning?
In order to treat gum disease, the cleaning goes below the gumline.
What causes gum disease?
Plaque. Keep in mind that plaque is always forming on your teeth but if this film of bacteria is not removed by brushing/flossing your teeth, then the bacteria can cause inflammation of your gums. When your gums become inflamed, they will start to pull away from the teeth and form pockets.
As plaque is always forming, the plaque will now buildup in these pockets and can not always be cleaned with a regular cleaning. If the gum disease is not treated, it could lead to bone and tooth loss.
Does everyone need a deep cleaning?
No. If gum disease is caught early and hasn't damaged the areas under your gumline, then a regular cleaning with your dentist will be adequate. If the pockets have become too deep, then your best treatment option may be do have a deep cleaning.
What happens after a deep cleaning?
After your deep cleaning, you may have some pain/soreness for a couple days and maybe some sensitivity. You will come back with your dentist to see how your gums have healed and to measure your pocket depths. If the pockets have become deeper, other treatment options may be considered.
*Remember: Home care is an important factor in ensuring a healthy mouth and to help prevent gum disease. Keep up the good work at home and make sure to see your dentist at least 2 times per year!*