When your hygienist performs a routine cleaning, also called scaling, it is meant to be preventative in nature. The goal is to help you maintain healthy teeth and gums by removing plaque that you may have missed in your regular brushing and flossing. If you’ve skimped on your daily routine or missed annual checkups and biannual cleanings, you may find yourself looking at the first stages of periodontal disease. Luckily, this beginning stage can be treated fairly easily with a deep cleaning by your periodontist.
What to Expect
When your hygienist detects signs of periodontal disease they should refer you to a periodontist who can give you the specialized care that you need. It’s important that you address periodontal disease in the beginning stages, before it progresses to a point where more extreme treatment options could be necessary.
During a regular cleaning, your hygienist uses dental instruments to remove plaque and tartar from the gumline. When your periodontist gives your teeth a deep cleaning, also known as root planing, they’ll clean plaque and tartar from below the gumline using traditional dental instruments or a laser. The use of lasers allows your periodontist to treat the disease below the gumline with less resulting bleeding or swelling as compared to traditional instruments. Since this cleaning is much more thorough than that done by your regular hygienist, you may have a local anesthetic administered to reduce soreness or tooth sensitivity following the procedure, but any soreness you do experience will be temporary.
Periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss, but it is also completely avoidable. By maintaining a regular oral health routine and completing your biannual cleanings you can keep this disease from creeping up on you. If you’re concerned that you’re experiencing symptoms of this disease, it’s important to contact a periodontist, like Dr. Raymond Kenzik in Ormond Beach, FL to address your concerns promptly. When caught early, a deep cleaning can be all you need to prevent serious issues later on.