Scaling and Root Planing
Scaling & Root Planing: a different kind of cleaning for our patients with periodontal (gum) disease we might recommend a “Scaling and Root Planing” which is sometimes called a “deep cleaning.” In a healthy mouth a regular cleaning, or prophylaxis, focuses on removing plaque and polishing teeth above the gum line. Scaling and Root Planing takes several visits and focuses on the elimination of tartar and plaque below the gum where periodontal disease occurs.
Plaque and tartar contain bacteria (biofilm). If the biofilm is not regularly removed from the teeth, it causes the gums to become red and swollen. This inflammation of the gums is called “gingivitis.” In addition to scaling & root planing our office uses My Perio Path saliva testing to test against 11 pathogens that can systemically affect your health. When recommended you may be prescribed an oral antibiotic to combat those pathogens alongside your appointments. At your first appointment you will also start using OraCare mouth rinse which helps cut down on the bacteria in your mouth allowing quicker healing.
When gingivitis is not treated, it can advance to periodontal disease where the gums actually begin to pull away from the teeth and form “pockets” that are infected. Below the gum line, bacterial toxins and the body’s enzymes fighting the infection actually start to break down the bone and connective tissue that hold teeth in place.
A Scaling and Root Planing combined with medications, regular office visits and a personalized home care program can help to reduce the pocket depths and begin to control periodontal disease.