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Boston Prosthodontics Dental Group

Why Root Planing and Scaling Is Key for Dental Health

By Kenneth Malament on March 16, 2015

A woman smilingAt Boston Prosthodontics Dental Group, we pride ourselves in offering the finest in advanced restorative dentistry procedures that enhance dental health. Preventative care is key as well, which is why we offer root planing and scaling. Also known as deep cleaning, root planing and scaling is a crucial part of maintaining healthy teeth and gums.

What is root planing and scaling?

Root planing and scaling is a process in which deposits of tartar and plaque are removed from the teeth down at the gumline and in other hard-to-reach places of the mouth. The process involves careful scraping and the use of precision tools.

Why is root planing and scaling so important?

Even if you brush twice a day and floss every night, plaque can accumulate in parts of your mouth that are hard to clean at home. The plaque hardens into tartar (dental calculus), which is rough and hard and an ideal surface for oral bacteria to reside. In order to prevent tooth decay and gum disease from occurring or progressing, root planing and scaling are an ideal treatment option.

How does root planing and scaling differ from a routine cleaning?

While the process is known as deep cleaning, it is a much different thing than traditional dental cleanings at your regular checkup. These routine cleanings involve the use of an electric brush to polish the teeth. Some scraping may be involved, but it is relatively minor.

Deep cleaning, on the other hand, is solely about scraping, and it gets down deep to places a brush cannot get. It's much more involved overall.

The Root Planing and Scaling Procedure: What to Expect

During root planing and scaling, a patient is given local anesthetic in order to numb the gumline and avoid pain during treatment. The dentist then works carefully with scraping tools to perform the following tasks:

  • Scaling: The scraping of plaque and tartar from the teeth
  • Planing: The smoothing down of tooth surfaces that are decayed or damaged

Patients will have only one-quarter to one-half of their mouth treated in a root planing and scaling procedure. The rest of the mouth can be completed in another session. This is to avoid anesthetizing the entire mouth and to make sure that treatment is performed in a reasonable amount of time.

After Root Planing and Scaling: What to Expect

After a root planing and scaling procedure has been completed, the patient can return to his or her usual routine. It's not unusual to experience some tenderness of the gums and tooth sensitivity along the gumline. To avoid discomfort, patients are advised to avoid foods and beverages that are too hot and too cold in temperature. Spicy foods should be avoided as well to prevent irritation.

Patients are instructed to brush and flosses as usual, but to be gentle when doing so. Lukewarm water should be used to gargle and rinse.

Contact Boston Prosthodontics Dental Group

For more information about root planing and scaling as well as your many other options for advanced dental care treatment, be sure to contact our team of dentists and prosthodontists today. We at Boston Prosthodontics Dental Group look forward to your visit and helping you achieve excellent dental care.

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Boston Prosthodontics Dental Group

50 Staniford St
5th Fl
Boston, MA 02114

Open Today 7:00am - 3:00pm

More Info Directions (617) 523-5451