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Deep Gum Cleaning

Scaling and Root Planing in Aliana & Conroe, TX

Scaling and Root Planing for Healthy Gums

At Epic Smiles, Dr. Javid Pour-Ghasemi and our team understand the importance of healthy gums for a beautiful and functional smile, as well as overall dental health. That’s why we offer scaling and root planing (SRP), a deep cleaning procedure to fight gum disease in its early and moderate stages. Call our Aliana, TX, location at (281) 903-5635 or our Conroe, TX, location at (936) 539-9400 to learn more from our top dentist near Houston, TX.

What is Gum Disease?

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, refers to inflammation of the gums caused by a buildup of plaque and tartar at the gumline. Chronic periodontal disease occurs when the inflammation and infection of the gums are left untreated, leading to more severe dental issues. Plaque is a sticky film of bacteria that forms on teeth throughout the day. If plaque isn’t removed by regular brushing and flossing, it hardens into tartar (calculus).

Here’s a breakdown of the stages of gum disease:

  • Gingivitis: This is the mildest form of gum disease. Symptoms may include red, swollen, or tender gums that bleed easily when brushing. Gingivitis is reversible with good oral hygiene and professional cleanings.
  • Periodontitis: If gingivitis is left untreated, it can progress to periodontitis. This more severe stage involves infection and inflammation of the gums and bones that support your teeth. Periodontitis can damage the jawbone, loosen teeth, and eventually lead to tooth loss.

What is Scaling and Root Planing?

Scaling and root planing, also known as periodontal therapy or dental scaling, is a dental procedure used to treat gum disease, particularly in its early to moderate stages. It’s a deep cleaning procedure that removes plaque and tartar buildup from below the gumline, where brushing and flossing can’t reach.

The procedure consists of two parts:

  • Scaling: This involves using specialized instruments to remove plaque and tartar from above and below the gumline.
  • Root planing: This smoothens the tooth roots to make it harder for plaque to adhere in the future.

By removing plaque and tartar, scaling and root planing help reduce gum inflammation and create a healthy environment for the gums to heal.

Benefits of Scaling and Root Planing

Scaling and root planing offers a variety of benefits for your oral health:

  • Improved gum health: This is the primary benefit. Scaling and root planing remove harmful bacteria and inflammation, promoting healthy gums.
  • Reduced gum bleeding and inflammation: The procedure helps reduce swelling and bleeding of the gum tissue, leading to a more comfortable mouth.
  • Prevents progression of gum disease: By removing plaque and tartar, scaling and root planing help prevent gum disease from worsening and causing damage to the jawbone and teeth.
  • Saves teeth: In its early stages, gum disease is treatable. Scaling and root planing can help prevent tooth loss associated with advanced gum disease.

When is Scaling and Root Planing Necessary?

Scaling and root planing may be recommended by your dentist in the following situations, and they often recommend teeth scaling to address chronic periodontal disease:

  • Diagnosis of gingivitis or mild periodontitis: If you have gingivitis, with symptoms like swollen or bleeding gums, scaling and root planing can help reverse the condition and prevent it from progressing. In the early stages of periodontitis, scaling and root planing can remove plaque and tartar buildup to stop the disease from advancing.
  • Persistent bad breath: Chronic bad breath (halitosis) can sometimes indicate gum disease. Scaling and root planing can help eliminate the bacteria that contribute to bad breath.
  • Loose teeth: If your teeth feel loose, it could be a sign of gum disease damage to the jawbone. Scaling and root planing may help remove plaque and tartar buildup, creating a more stable environment for your teeth.
  • Diabetes management: People with diabetes are at a higher risk of developing gum disease. Regular scaling and root planing can help maintain good oral health and reduce complications associated with diabetes.

The Deep Cleaning Process 

Consultation and Examination

Dr. Pour-Ghasemi will discuss your symptoms and dental history, followed by a thorough examination of your gums and teeth. X-rays may also be taken to assess the extent of gum disease. 

A local anesthetic may be applied to numb the area and minimize discomfort during the procedure.

Scaling

Using specialized instruments, the hygienist will meticulously remove plaque and tartar buildup from above and below the gum line. This may involve reaching into periodontal pockets, the spaces between the teeth and gums that have deepened due to gum disease.

Root Planing 

After scaling, the tooth roots are smoothed to remove any remaining plaque or tartar and to create a clean, slippery surface that discourages future plaque buildup.

Aftercare for Scaling and Root Planing

Following scaling and root planing, practice good oral hygiene to promote healing and prevent gum disease recurrence. Here are some key aftercare tips:

  • Pain Management: You may experience some tenderness or soreness in your gums. Over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen can help manage discomfort.
  • Gentle Brushing and Flossing: Brush your teeth twice with a soft-bristled toothbrush and floss daily to remove plaque and prevent buildup. However, be gentle in the first few days following the procedure, as your gums may be sensitive.
  • Use a Prescribed Mouthwash: Your dentist may recommend a therapeutic mouthwash to help reduce inflammation and promote healing.
  • Maintain Regular Dental Visits: Schedule regular dental checkups and cleanings as recommended by your dentist to monitor your gum health and prevent future problems.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is scaling and root planing painful?

A local anesthetic is typically used to numb the area being treated, minimizing discomfort during the procedure. You may experience some tenderness or soreness after the procedure, but this usually subsides within a few days, leaving your mouth healthy.

How long does scaling and root planing take?

The scaling and root planing duration depends on the gum disease’s severity. For mild cases, it might take a single appointment (lasting 30 to 45 minutes). More advanced cases may require multiple appointments (an hour or more each) to thoroughly clean all affected areas.

Does insurance cover scaling and root planing costs?

Most dental insurance plans cover scaling and root planing, especially when performed to treat gum disease. It’s always best to check with your insurance provider to understand coverage details and out-of-pocket costs.

How long do the effects of scaling and root planing last?

The positive effects of scaling and root planing can last many years, provided you maintain good oral hygiene with regular brushing, flossing, and dental checkups. This helps prevent plaque buildup and keeps your gums healthy.

Keep Your Smile’s Foundation Healthy with Deep Gum Cleanings

Scaling and root planing (SRP) is a powerful tool to treat chronic periodontal disease and maintain healthy gums. For residents of Aliana, Conroe, Richmond, Houston, and Willis, Texas, Epic Smiles offers experienced dentists who can perform SRP and discuss personalized treatment options for your gum health.

Schedule an appointment today!

Call Epic Smiles in Aliana at 281-903-5635 or Conroe at 936-539-9400 to learn more and take the first step towards a bright, healthy smile. Remember, a healthy smile starts with healthy gums!