Periodontal Scaling and Root Planing

The objective of scaling & root planning is to remove causative agents which lead to inflammation of the gingival (gum) tissue and surrounding bone. Often dental lasers are incorporated into this procedure. 

Reasons for scaling and root planing

Here are some reasons why these dental procedures may be necessary:

  • Minimize tooth loss –  Scaling and root planing  aims to reduce causative factors that lead to the destruction of supporting structures of the teeth.
  • Systemic disease prevention – The oral bacteria which cause periodontal infections can travel through the bloodstream to other parts of the body.  Research has shown that lung infections, heart disease, stroke and other inflammatory diseases  have been linked to periodontal bacteria.  Scaling and root planing remove bacteria and halts periodontal disease from progressing, thus preventing the bacteria from traveling to other parts of the body.
  • Esthetic effects – Scaling and root planing help remove tartar and plaque from the teeth and below the gumline.  As an added bonus, if superficial stains are present on the teeth, they will be removed in the process of the scaling and root planning procedure.
  • Better breath – One of the most common signs of periodontal disease is halitosis (bad breath).  Food particles and bacteria can cause a persistent bad odor in the oral cavity which is alleviated with cleaning procedures such as scaling and root planing.

If you have any concerns or questions about scaling and root planing, or periodontal disease, please ask your periodontist.

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