Periodontal Scaling and Root Planing

Periodontal scaling and root planingIf you haven’t been to the dentist in awhile, or aren’t great about flossing – there’s a chance that your smile may have developed a condition known as periodontal disease – more commonly referred to as “gum disease.”

What is Gum Disease?

The first stages of the disease are called gingivitis – which is simply just inflammation of the gumlines around the teeth due to plaque biofilm buildup. But over time, our body responds to this infection and causes gum detachment and even bone loss. Other symptoms usually include problems like:

  • Bad breath
  • Heavy tartar buildup along your gums
  • A bad taste in your mouth
  • Tooth mobility
  • Tooth loss
  • Deep pockets under your gums

If caught early enough, we can prevent periodontitis from causing tooth loss. Dr. Tiner recommends a cleaning every 6 months, along with diagnostic x-rays to evaluate your bone health. We also record the depth of periodontal pockets around each tooth, to pinpoint areas of gum detachment. In a healthy mouth, pockets will be 3mm or shallower. Deeper spaces are indicative of disease which can lead to a root canal.

Non-Surgical Treatment

A deep cleaning involves removing all calcified tartar and biofilm from the pockets around your teeth and thoroughly cleaning the root surfaces. If necessary, we will numb each quadrant of your mouth to keep you as comfortable as possible.

Stages of periodontal diseaseAfter reviewing appropriate home hygiene methods, we will typically have you return every 3 months for a maintenance visit until symptoms are controlled or reversed. In certain circumstances, we may also need to place local antibiotics into deeper pockets so that they will respond to therapy. If disease is advanced, a bone graft may also be necessary.

If you’re experiencing symptoms of gum disease or haven’t seen a dentist in more than 6 months, call our Richardson office today to schedule a check-up.