There are 64 million adults that have gum disease in America. Scaling and root planing is a common treatment that dentists use to treat gum disease.
When you don’t remove plaque and tartar with daily cleaning and dental hygiene, the bacteria can multiply which creates more plaque and tartar, and more bacteria, ad infinitum. This can eventually lead to sensitive gums that bleed when brushing and flossing. This is considered the very beginning sign of gum disease. If not properly treated, the plaque and tartar start to form pockets under the gum line which can lead to tooth decay and tooth loss.
So, what is scaling and root planing you ask? This is also known as non-surgical periodontal therapy, or deep cleaning. It is the process of removing dental plaque, bacteria, and calculus. Scaling is the process of removing calculus and plaque attached to the tooth, it targets below the gum line, and along the root. Plaque is more likely to stick to uneven surfaces, so your dentist smooths the irregular surfaces on the root of the tooth and removes any remaining calculus, this is called root planing.
Be sure to brush and floss to avoid the need for this procedure. And ensure that you see the dentist for your six month check up and regular cleaning.