Scaling and Root Planing

Prevent Tooth Loss With Periodontal Scaling In Anchorage, Alaska

Periodontal scaling is a treatment for a type of gum disease causing swelling and soreness in the tissues surrounding your teeth. When left untreated, gum disease can cause painful tooth loss. It is also often associated with chronic conditions such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Gum disease occurs slowly and if you do not visit the dentist regularly, you may be unaware that you have developed this condition. When diagnosed and treated in a timely manner, your teeth can be saved from harm.

The main cause of gum disease is a build-up of plaque in and around your gum line. Plaque contains harmful bacteria and food debris and it can stick to almost all the structures in your oral cavity, including your teeth, crowns and bridges. Plaque cannot be avoided – it constantly forms on your teeth and must be frequently removed to maintain optimal dental health. Inadequate oral hygiene can cause your gums to become red, sore and swollen. However, medical conditions, such as diabetes, and lifestyle habits, such as smoking, can make you more prone to gum disease, regardless of whether or not you follow a strict oral hygiene regime.

Over time, plaque is able to combine with minerals naturally found in your mouth and form a substance called calculus (tartar). Calculus sticks to your teeth and makes them feel rough, attracting even more plaque. Calculus does not tend to cause a deterioration in the health of your teeth but can serve to aid plaque build-up.

Periodontal scaling is highly recommended to remove plaque and calculus from under your gums. This non-surgical procedure takes place following a thorough assessment of your teeth and gums. Before undergoing treatment, we may anesthetize your mouth so that we can scrape below your gum line without causing you to feel discomfort. The procedure is carried out using hand-held or ultrasonic vibrating instruments designed to blast unwanted deposits off your teeth and its surrounding tissues. Following treatment, you should notice a reduction in gum bleeding.

Periodontal scaling can cause your teeth to become sensitive to hot and cold food and drink. If you follow a good oral hygiene regime and use desensitizing toothpaste when you brush your teeth, you should be able to minimize this sensitivity.

Since scaling is very effective at reducing the inflammation associated with plaque accumulation, it is typically the only treatment you will require to prevent your teeth from suffering from damage caused by gum disease. Unfortunately, scaling alone will not cure your gum disease. It must be followed by good oral hygiene and further scaling sessions.

For some patients, scaling alone can leave teeth feeling rough. If this happens to you, we may combine your scaling treatment with root planning, which is a procedure for smoothing out your root surfaces, helping to prevent the future accumulation of unwanted calculus. Smooth root surfaces enable your gums to regenerate themselves in the absence of irritation. Following root planning, your gum tissue will tighten around your teeth, helping to secure them in their correct positions.

If you believe you could benefit from periodontal scaling, contact us for an appointment.

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We have been in business since 1992, serving Anchorage Alaska.