Scaling and Root Planing Overview
If you are showing the signs and symptoms periodontal (gum) disease, a regular cleaning might not be adequate enough to restore your oral health. Periodontitis can pose a significant threat to your smile and overall wellness, including jawbone loss and tooth loss, especially if left untreated. At Tupelo Smiles Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, we routinely treat cases of periodontitis with scaling and root planing (SRP). This simple, nonsurgical procedure is performed by our well-trained dental hygienists to help arrest the periodontal disease process by removing built-up plaque and tartar from the under the gumline (subgingivally). With specially designed tools, our hygiene team performs SRP treatments to clean out periodontal pockets and then smooth the root surfaces of teeth to promote better gum health. If you are worried about the health of your smile, schedule a gum disease screening at our comfortable Tupelo, MS practice and learn more about scaling and root planing to treat periodontitis.
Best Candidates for Scaling and Root Planing
Some of the symptoms of periodontal disease are gums that are swollen, tender, bleed easily, appear red, or have begun to recede. Persistent bad breath is often a common indicator of periodontal disease as well. At your dental examination, our team will assess the depths of your gum pockets and take advanced digital x-rays of your mouth. If your periodontal pockets measure greater than three millimeters and we can see bone loss around these teeth on your x-rays, then a scaling and root planing treatment might be recommended.
SRP can help to decrease the depths of the gum pockets to minimize the spaces where harmful plaque and bacteria like to collect. When gum disease is diagnosed in the periodontitis stage, we can often treat it with nonsurgical scaling and root planing therapy. Advanced periodontitis, however, may require a surgical approach to stop the disease progression and restore oral health.
What To Expect with Scaling and Root Planing
Scaling and root planing is a gum disease treatment that may be carried out in our office with local anesthesia. We might also recommend sedation techniques if you feel anxious about undergoing this procedure. When you are comfortable, our skilled hygienists will use ultrasonic and special hand scaling instruments to clean out the plaque, bacteria, and tartar from below the gumline. The rough surfaces of the tooth roots will be smoothed (or planed), creating a healthy surface to which the gum tissues can reattach. A special technique will then be used to polish the teeth subgingivally (below the gums) to further remove any residual deposits and enhance the results of SRP. As the gums heal and reattach to the root surfaces, the periodontal pockets should begin to decrease in depth and minimize spaces where bacteria and plaque can build up. In many cases, SRP may be completed in quadrants (or quarters of the mouth) over the course of 1 – 4 appointments.
Scaling and Root Planing Recovery
Following your SRP treatment, you may have some minor tooth sensitivity and gum tenderness, as well as some tingling from the local anesthesia. One of the most important things to do following SRP treatment is to establish a good oral hygiene routine at home, including proper brushing and flossing, to keep your gums and teeth healthy and clean. When gum disease has affected your oral health, biannual dental cleanings are generally no longer enough to keep the condition at bay. To provide the best possible care for your health, doctors Caron and Kenney recommend periodontal maintenance cleanings every 3 – 4 months. Periodontal maintenance is a special program designed to provide thorough cleanings and exams, close monitoring of periodontal pockets, and overall gum and bone health after you have received treatment for gum disease.
Scaling and Root Planing
Periodontal disease can harm your oral health and smile, as well as place your general health at risk. If you have gums that bleed, bad breath, or any signs or symptoms of gum disease, please contact our Tupelo, MS right away. Scaling and root planing therapy is a nonsurgical procedure that doctors Caron and Kenney offer to help halt the disease and prevent it from further impacting your oral health. Our team at Tupelo Smiles Family and Cosmetic Dentistry is ready to help you overcome the effects of gum disease with personalized scaling and root planing care.