Did you know that approximately half of Americans over the age of 30 have periodontitis, the more advanced stage of gum disease? Periodontal disease is progressive in nature. If left untreated, it will worsen and ultimately lead to serious oral health problems such as receding gums, bone loss, and tooth loss. At North Bay Smiles in Petaluma, California, Dr. Yvonne Szyperski provides compassionate care and gentle treatment options for patients experiencing periodontal disease, including scaling and root planing.
How scaling and root planing helps treat gum disease
This procedure is designed to deep clean beneath the gum line. While routine dental cleanings every six months effectively remove plaque, tartar, and bacteria on the visible portion of the teeth, a deeper cleaning beneath the gums is necessary for patients who have developed periodontal pockets due to gum disease. These pockets form due to the irritation and inflammation caused by gum disease, which causes the gums to separate from the tooth roots and create deep spaces between the teeth and gums. Plaque, tartar, and bacteria can build up in these spaces, which are impossible to clean with brushing at home or even a typical professional tooth cleaning. That’s where scaling and root planing comes in.
What to expect
During scaling and root planing, we perform the following steps:
- Administer a local anesthetic to the treatment area to keep you comfortable during your treatment.
- Once the area is numb, we will gently clean the plaque and bacteria from the periodontal pockets using specialized tools. That is the “scaling” portion of the procedure.
- Then, we will smooth the rough surfaces of the teeth and roots to reduce the surface area where bacteria can thrive and help the gums form a healthy reattachment with the teeth.
- Finally, Dr. Szyperski may recommend an oral rinse like ‘OralCare’ to help the gums to heal.
After the treatment, you will likely experience some minor discomfort that can be managed with over-the-counter medications.
If you have symptoms of gum disease, seeking treatment as early as possible can help reduce its impact on your long-term oral health. To schedule your appointment with Dr. Yvonne Szyperski at North Bay Smiles, call (707) 306-8001 today!
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