Questions about Scaling and Root Planing

Dentist Serving Calgary, Cochrane, Airdrie and Nearby Areas of Alberta

What is the difference between scaling and general dental cleanings?

General dental cleanings are effective at removing soft plaque above the gum line. This is essential for general dental health but does not treat more serious issues affecting the gums. Scaling removes bacteria, plaque, and tarter both around and below the gum line. Removing these things from your periodontal pocket helps initiate a healing response and treat periodontal disease.

What is the difference between scaling and root planing?

Scaling removes toxins and buildup from your gums, root planing helps prevent this buildup from coming back. Root planing is used to smooth the root surfaces of your teeth, allowing your gum tissue to more firmly attach to your roots. In this way, your teeth are also protected from issues such as tooth sensitivity and tooth loss.

Are these procedures painful?

The periodontal procedures performed at Aesthetic Dental Studio are designed to maximize comfort and patient safety. Certain gum therapy options for periodontal disease will help to ensure your gum treatment is successful. Anesthesia is often used in these procedures to provide additional comfort. While these procedures may produce some initial discomfort, the long-term benefits to oral and systemic health far outweigh this slight inconvenience.

What is recovery from scaling and root planing like?

Some discomfort and increased sensitivity can be expected within the first few days following your procedure. This discomfort is easily manageable with the use of over the counter pain medications. Some minor bleeding may be present during this time as well. The bleeding should stop within a week.

You will need to use a prescription mouthwash after scaling and root planing. This mouthwash helps keep your gums healthy during the healing process. Brushing and flossing twice a day is also important to help keep your teeth and gums healthy during and after your recovery.

Are there any risks associated with scaling and root planing?

By treating your periodontal pockets, scaling and root planing will cause the swelling in your gums to decrease. This, in turn, can expose parts of your tooth root. When your tooth root is exposed, sensitivity to hot and cold food and beverages is possible. This is treatable with fluoride gel that reduces sensitivity.

Scaling and root planing are proven methods to treat periodontal disease. Left untreated, periodontal disease can lead to serious systemic health problems including cardiovascular disease and diabetes. These risks provide a much greater concern than the minor discomfort that may be caused by these procedures.

If you live in or around Calgary, Cochrane or another area of  Alberta and have questions about scaling and root planing, please contact the Aesthetic Dental Studio by phone at 403-543-4600 or via the form on this page to schedule an initial consultation today.