How’s a deep cleaning different than a standard teeth cleaning procedure? How can a dentist or hygienist go even deeper than a standard cleaning? Find out how a deep cleaning working and how it can help you get your oral health back on track after being ravaged by gum disease.
When Is a Deep Cleaning Necessary?
A standard teeth cleaning procedure aims to remove tartar that has hardened onto the teeth. Tartar, hardened plaque, can’t be removed by brushing. It takes the precision of a dental scaling and experienced hands to carefully remove tartar from teeth.
If too much time has passed since the last standard teeth cleaning, that tartar buildup will begin to dip below the gum line and amass on the roots of teeth.
Tartar on the roots of teeth can create bacterial pockets, which will only make the situation worse. The pockets get deeper, the infection gets worse and, eventually, the teeth and gums will start to suffer irreversible damage. Scaling and root planning, commonly called a “deep cleaning,” offer a way to pull your oral health back from the brink.
Scaling and Root Planning: How Does It Work?
There are two primary elements of a deep cleaning, scaling and root planning:
Scaling – this portion of the procedure entails carefully removing tartar from, not only the visible surfaces of teeth but the roots of teeth as well. Before scaling begins, the dentist or hygienist will administer a shot of a local anesthetic to the gums so no pain will be felt.
Root planning – with the tartar removed, the dentist or hygienist will smooth the roots of the teeth. Smoothing the roots ensures that the gums attach uniformly with the teeth. This smoothing is necessary to prevent or eliminate pockets of space between the teeth and gums, pockets that will harbor bacteria.
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