Scaling and root planning are performed with a combination of ultrasonic scalers and hand instruments.
Normally, ultrasonic instruments are first used to remove large deposits of plaque and then perform calculus of crowns and roots of teeth. Specialized instruments are used to remove any remaining material and make sure the surface of the tooth is clean and smooth. When working under the gum line, the dentist or dental hygienist cannot see the plaque or calculus; instead they rely on the sense of touch to feel the roughness on the root surface.
Sometimes the scaling and flattening of the root can be completed in one visit. This is usually possible if you have gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. However, if you have periodontitis, several visits are usually necessary. The dentist will typically do a mouth sweep at each visit.
For two to three days after treatment, you may have some pain and be sensitive to hot and cold temperatures. Some over-the-counter pain relievers can help relieve discomfort and our dentist will recommend accordingly.
You will be asked to use an antiseptic mouthwash after scaling and root flattening. This is especially likely if your gums are very sore. However, brushing and flossing should continue as usual. You can expect less bleeding in the first few days. This usually stops within a week.
Good dental hygiene is important after this procedure to prevent any further progression of gum disease. Brush your teeth after every meal and floss once a day to get rid of the bacteria that make up the plaque. Visit your dentist once every six months unless otherwise noted to keep your teeth as healthy as possible.
It may be necessary to take antibiotics before certain dental procedures. The degree of gingival retraction depends on the depth and severity of periodontitis. The most severe disease will regress after successful therapy. As a result, a part of the root may be exposed, which makes the tooth appear longer. It will also be more sensitive to heat and cold. To prevent root caries, your dentist may prescribe a fluoride-containing gel to help control plaque in and around the teeth.
At present, there is increasing scientific evidence that highlights the important links between periodontal health and general health. The repercussions of periodontal disease at the systemic level are derived either by the presence of large numbers of bacteria at the subgingival level that can produce a direct effect or by the systemic inflammation they generate. This causes gum disease to increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, premature delivery, or low birth weight or diabetes decompensation, among many other effects.
The achievement of health and good results in the long term will also allow patients to benefit from the array of treatments that multidisciplinary teams can offer today to achieve a healthy, functional and aesthetic mouth, thus improving the quality of lifetime.
Another beneficial effect of the treatment is its ability to produce improvement of the different clinical variables, which results in absence of bleeding, less tooth mobility and control of halitosis. Knowing its indications, contraindications, benefits and post-surgical care, is essential to correctly choose the technique to perform and the subsequent maintenance it requires, in each situation.