Periodontal disease, which occurs when the gum tissue becomes inflamed, warrants some type of gum treatment or else it can result in consequences as severe as tooth and bone loss. The type of gum treatment needed will depend on the severity and progression of the patient’s gum disease.
One treatment commonly performed to address early stage periodontitis is root planing and scaling. This treatment, in which a dentist thoroughly cleans between the gums and the roots of the teeth to remove infected material, can be very effective and prevent the need for more invasive interventions.
Rooting Out Gum Disease With Effective Treatment
Gum disease is a progressive condition, resulting in more serious symptoms as it advances. In the most severe cases, patients may require gum surgery or even the replacement of missing teeth and bone tissue in order to restore the smile.
However, if you intervene early enough, a treatment known as root planing and scaling may be effective. This intervention involves a deep cleaning between the gums and the roots of the teeth and in any pockets that have formed to eliminate bacteria in those areas.
After the cleaning (scaling) is complete, the dentist will smooth down any rough spots on the root (planing) so that bacteria will no longer have natural spots to congregate.
When Root Planing And Scaling Is Necessary
Root planing and scaling is indicated when a patient is showing signs of the stage of gum disease known as periodontitis, which is more advanced than the milder gingivitis. Symptoms of periodontitis may include:
- Development of pockets between gums and the teeth
- Redness in those pockets
- Gum recession
- Increased tooth sensitivity
- Loose teeth
It’s important to monitor your smile for these signs of periodontitis so that you can follow up as needed with your provider to pursue effective treatment.
Maintaining Healthy Gums After Treatment
Root planing and scaling does not necessarily eliminate gum disease, permanently, however. In order to minimize their risk of a relapse, patients must be diligent about practicing good oral hygiene habits and seek adequate professional care. You should:
- Brush your teeth twice each day
- Floss daily
- Stay well hydrated so that your mouth can produce enough saliva to clear away harmful bacteria
- Get your dental check-up twice each year and attend all other follow-up appointments
If you feel that you might benefit from a root planing and scaling, contact the office of Dr. David Kuban to schedule an evaluation.