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What is root scaling and planing?

Posted on January 6, 2016

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periodontics Periodontics is a branch of dentistry that focuses on the health of the gums. Healthy gums are vital to maintaining healthy teeth. In fact, severe gum disease is one of the main causes of tooth loss. If you do develop gum disease, there are several types of treatment. One of these is planing and scaling.

Symptoms of Gum Disease

Gum disease is a common problem, and can begin with mild symptoms you might not notice right away. Our dentist, though, can detect signs you might not see. When gum disease is diagnosed early, it can be treated more easily. Symptoms you should keep an eye out for include:

  • Bleeding when you brush your teeth
  • Redness or swelling in the gums
  • A purple or shiny look to the gums

During your regular dentist appointments, our dentist will also evaluate the pockets around your teeth. If they are too deep, this is an indication that gum disease might be more advanced. Based on the severity of your symptoms, our dentist will recommend a course of treatment.

Treatment for Gum Disease—Root Scaling and Planing

Early stages of gum disease, called gingivitis, are simply an inflammation of the gingival tissue. Brushing with a baking soda toothpaste or a similar toothpaste designed to reduce gingivitis symptoms might be the only necessary treatment. As the infection progresses, more extensive treatment might be required. One common treatment for gum disease is scaling and planing.

Scaling and planing is a deep cleaning technique in which the dentist thoroughly cleans tartar and plaque from the teeth below the gumline. In addition, the upper parts of the tooth roots are planed to make them smoother. The smoother surfaces are less likely to collect additional plaque and tartar. The procedure is usually performed under a local anesthetic, sometimes accompanied with sedation. The gums are then allowed to heal. Without the excess tartar, they can return to a normal, healthy condition. If you continue to take good care of them after your treatment, they will remain healthy.

Call us at East Broward Dental to schedule your appointment or consultation with Dr. Taskonak.

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