Treatment for Periodontitis and Gum Disease

Why Would You Need Scaling and Root Planing?

Periodontitis (advanced gum disease), is caused by a sticky film of bacteria called plaque. Plaque is constantly forming on our teeth, but without proper cleaning, the bacteria in plaque can cause the gums to become inflamed. If left untreated, they will begin to pull away from the teeth, leaving pockets where the bacteria can breed. At this point, it becomes extremely difficult (if not impossible) to remove the bacteria with regular brushing and flossing alone, and there’s a risk of bone and tooth loss. Dr. Lennon would recommend scaling and root planing to combat periodontitis.

Scaling and Root Planing Treatment

Scaling and root planing is a two-part procedure to treat periodontitis. Scaling is when Dr. Lennon removes all of the plaque and tartar (hardened plaque) above and below the gumline, cleaning all the way down to the bottom of the pocket. Dr. Lennon then begins the second phase of treatment, which is root planing. Root planing involves smoothing out the dental roots to help the gums reattach. Planing helps the root surfaces become smooth, which keeps bacteria, plaque, and tartar from re-adhering underneath the gumline. The process may take more than one appointment to make sure that your teeth are clean and healthy.

Post-Treatment Tips

When you see Dr. Lennon for follow up treatments, he will want to check on the healing of your teeth and gums. In most cases, patients who had red or swollen gums find that their gums turn pink again and they experience little to no bleeding. If your gums respond well and remain stable, you won’t need any further treatment. 

To schedule a consultation or to ask any questions about scaling and root planing, give us a call or send us an email.