If your dentist tells you that you need a deep dental cleaning, also called scaling and root planing, you may feel some fear. But this procedure is not as scary as it sounds. In fact, not going through this cleaning leads to scarier problems down the road.
Scaling and Root Planing for Gum Disease
Like heart disease, diabetes, arthritis and hip problems, gum disease often affects aging adults. These patients are typically in their 40s, 50s or older, according to the American Dental Association (ADA). But young people can get periodontal disease, too. In fact, almost half of American adults over the age of 30 struggle with chronic periodontitis.
If your dentist tells you that you have gum disease, you cannot let this condition go untreated. If you do not receive treatment, you risk losing bone and teeth. Also at risk is your overall health. This gum and bone infection gets into your bloodstream and damages your kidneys and heart. Along with these other health problems, gum disease links to stroke.
One of the most effective treatments for periodontitis is scaling and root planing. Through this deep dental cleaning, your dentist removes plaque and tartar build-up from beneath your gumline.
When You Need a Deep Dental Cleaning
Plaque causes inflammation in your gums as part of gum disease. This inflammation causes your gums to pull away from your teeth. Then plaque can get under your gumline where brushing does not reach.
If your dentist diagnoses gingivitis or periodontal disease as affecting your smile, you may need a deep dental cleaning. Signs and symptoms of gum disease include:
- Bleeding gums
- Gum inflammation
- Bad breath
- Loose teeth
- Receding gums
- Blood on your toothbrush
What Happens During a Deep Dental Cleaning
A deep dental cleaning takes place in two parts. The first part is scaling with the second being root planing. Scaling removes plaque and tartar buildup from under your gumline. This is the primary cause of your periodontitis. Root planing then smooths the tooth’s root so your gums can reattach to your tooth.
Your dentist performs this procedure after applying local anesthetic. This means you stay comfortable throughout. In many cases, your dentist treats one half of your mouth in one visit and the rest of your mouth as part of a follow-up visit.
If your dentist recommends a deep dental cleaning and you do not go through with it, you risk bone loss. You also might need surgery in the near future.
Preventing Gum Disease
You can avoid needing planing and root scaling by taking good care of your teeth. This care involves a twice-daily routine of tooth brushing with daily flossing. You must also see your dentist twice yearly or as often as recommended for regular exams, dental X-rays and teeth cleanings. About 95 percent or more of dental diseases are preventable through proper care.
If you fear you have gum disease, you need to see your dentist at Carolina Dental Arts in Raleigh or Goldsboro, NC. We can also help you prevent this common dental infection or treat it before you suffer tooth or bone loss. Gum disease is not something you can ignore. Even if you have not been to the dentist in multiple years, we can get your dental health and related well-being back in order.
Schedule your visit at Carolina Dental Arts today.