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What is scaling and planing?

Close up portrait of fascinating young, beautiful wonderful lady posing in front of came while isolated with teal backgroundHas your dentist told you that you need a scaling and planing? Although they may not sound very pleasant, these two treatments can help save your teeth and gums from developing serious problems. Read on for some information on scaling and planing, and find out why your dentist has recommended these important procedures! 

What happens during scaling and planing?

Although these two procedures are typically done together, they are actually two separate things. In a scaling, your dentist will use hand or ultrasonic instruments to thoroughly clean beneath the gumline. A planing procedure protects the tooth from further damage, by smoothing out the surface of the tooth root, to make it more difficult for bacteria and plaque to stick to it. 

If you are concerned about pain or discomfort, you don’t have to worry – you will be given local anesthesia before these procedures. 

Why do I need scaling and planing?

These two deep cleaning procedures are recommended if a lot of plaque has built up on your teeth. When plaque builds up, your gums may become inflamed and irritated, and they may start to pull away from teeth. This forms little “pockets,” which collect even more plaque and bacteria. It can be next to impossible to clean out this plaque with regular brushing or a trip to the dentist for a cleaning. 

If left untreated, this buildup of plaque beneath the gum line can result in gum irritation, gum disease, and eventually even tooth and bone loss in the jaw (this is why regular cleaning and checkup appointments are so important!). The good news is that as soon as the plaque is cleaned out, the gums will begin to heal and reattach to the teeth. 

Your gums may feel swollen and tender after a scaling and planing, and your teeth may feel sensitive. However, this should ease within a week. 

Scaling and planing may not sound like too much fun, but it is a very common, very beneficial procedure. If you are having pain in your gums or teeth, make an appointment at Hampton Dental Associates in Milwaukee right away. Call (414) 464-9021!

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