A non-surgical periodontal procedure that is used to fight gum disease by eliminating or removing etiological agents that cause inflammation in the gum.
What Is The Purpose?
The objective of Scaling and Root Planing, otherwise known as non-surgical periodontal therapy or deep cleaning, is to remove or eliminate dental plaque, its products and calculus, and help establish a healthy mouth.
Plaque is a soft, sticky mixture of bacteria, waste products from bacteria, and some food debris. It irritates the gums, or gingiva, and causes inflammation over time: gingivitis. The longer plaque is left on the teeth, the harder it gets. After 24 hours, some plaque hardens into calculus, otherwise known as tartar.
Scaling and Root Planing is one of the most effective ways to treat gum disease before it becomes severe. Scaling and root planing cleans between the gums and the teeth down to the roots.
Scaling is procedure that meticulously removes contamination toxins, plaque, tartar, cementum, or dentin that is rough and/or permeated by calculus from around, below, and under the gum line down to the bottom of the pocket. Removal of adherent plaque and calculus with hand instruments.
Sometimes a device may be electric, known as an ultrasonic or sonic scaler. Ultrasonic scalers vibrate at a frequency that breaks down bacterial cell membranes and removes both plaque and calculus. Hand instruments are used to complete the fine hand scaling that removes anything the ultrasonic scaler left behind.
Scaling can also be performed prophylactically on patients without periodontal disease. A prophylaxis, or prophy refers to scaling and polishing of the teeth in order to prevent oral diseases. Polishing does not remove calculus, only some plaque and stains, and should therefore only be done in conjunction with scaling.
Root planing involves smoothing the root surfaces of your teeth with thin curettes so gum tissue can more firmly reattach to roots that are clean and smooth to prevent tooth loss and sensitivity problems. The procedure makes it more difficult for plaque to accumulate along the root surfaces.
Root planing is a specialized skill involving scaling of the root of the tooth, made up of cementum. A smooth cementum provides less opportunity for bacteria to hang out and form calculus, so root planing is an important part of stopping periodontal disease where it is at, and preventing periodontal disease from getting worse, especially once deeper pockets have formed in the gums and the bone.
Scaling and Root Planing are considered the basic treatments of periodontal diseases, and may be the only treatment required to treat mild cases of periodontitis. However, scaling and root planning may also be the initial therapy prior to any future surgical procedures.
The patient must be able to be maintained at a level of periodontal health that will prevent reinfection with periodontal pathogens. This requires optimal home care and ongoing periodontal maintenance therapy, usually every 3 to 4 months to sustain health.