Periodontics: Scaling and Root Planing

Periodontics Albuquerque, NM

Periodontics is a branch of dentistry that involves the prevention and treatment of gum disease. If you have symptoms of gum disease, your dentist may recommend scaling and root planing. It is a non-surgical procedure that helps to treat periodontal disease. Read on to learn more about gum disease treatment.


Gum or periodontal disease is often caused by plaque, which constantly forms on teeth. If people do not clean their teeth properly, the bacteria in plaque can cause the gums to become inflamed. When this occurs, the gums will pull away from the teeth and form spaces that are referred to as pockets. Plaque usually gets trapped in these pockets.

If left untreated, gum disease could lead to several problems. These include bone and tooth loss. But if gum disease is caught early enough, a professional cleaning can help. This is usually when it has not damaged the structures below the gumline. Scaling and root planing may be recommended if the pockets between the teeth and gums are too deep. Scaling and root planing can aid people with chronic periodontitis.

The procedure

Scaling and root planing teeth may take one or multiple appointments to complete. A local anesthetic is usually used to lessen discomfort. The procedure involves cleaning the root surfaces. This helps to remove calculus or tartar and plaque from deep periodontal pockets. The provider will also smooth the tooth root to remove any bacterial toxins.

After the procedure

It is not uncommon to experience pain after this dental procedure. At a follow-up visit, the dental provider will examine the healing gums and make sure that the pockets have decreased in size. Most times, bleeding stops or reduces, and the pockets become smaller. Many patients often do not need any further active treatment.

But ongoing maintenance therapy is often needed to sustain health. When it comes to advanced periodontal conditions, surgical interventions may be required after scaling and root planing. This will stop the progression of bone loss. But scaling and root planing treatment usually reduces the amount of surgery a patient needs.

How to prevent gum disease

Prevention is a very important aspect of periodontics. Practicing good oral hygiene is crucial to prevent the development of periodontitis. These habits include brushing and flossing regularly. A person should brush at least twice daily and clean every surface of the teeth, the tongue, and the gumline. Floss can clean the spaces in between the teeth and the area under the gumline. The dentist may also recommend a mouth rinse that may help to reduce plaque.

Visit your dentist today

Scaling and root planing procedure involves the removal of calculus and plaque stuck below and above the gumline. The procedure can benefit a person whose gums, bones, and surrounding tissues have become damaged due to periodontitis. Brushing and flossing can prevent gum disease from developing in the mouth. Rinsing away germs with mouthwash is also beneficial. To find out more about periodontics and scaling and root planing, talk to your dentist today.

Request an appointment here: or call Family Choice Dental at (505) 634-5657 for an appointment in our Albuquerque office.

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