Gum disease can sneak up on us, even if we think we are doing everything right. The one thing most of us disregard is regular checkups and cleanings, and that can open the path to more involved procedures when we do decide to come back.
Scaling and root planing is one of these procedures, but it's not quite as bad as it's been made to sound, especially when you consider its benefits. For more information about it contact Dr. Christina McMillon of Hearthside Dentistry in Thornton, CO.
If you brush and floss your teeth every day you are already doing a lot to prevent the buildup of plaque on your teeth.
Plaque is the sticky film that forms on them every day, which is why daily hygiene habits are important. But no matter how good we are there is usually some plaque left over.
It may not seem like much but this hard-to-reach plaque can harden into tartar thanks to the minerals in our saliva, making it nearly impossible to remove at home with just a toothbrush.
The bacteria that live in both plaque and tartar feed on the sugars we consume and create acids as a result. These acids can damage the enamel on our teeth, and our gums, potentially leading to gum disease.
The good news is that if gum disease is in its early stages it can often be reversed with a professional dental cleaning. Or halted before it can take root. But sometimes the buildup of bacteria progresses far enough that traditional cleaning can no longer be effective.
For deeper cleaning, beyond what a professional cleaning can provide, your dentist may suggest scaling and root planing.
Scaling is the process of cleaning the plaque and tartar on your teeth beneath the gumline using a specialized device. Then, to finalize the treatment, your roots are smoothed, or planed, to help prevent both plaque and tartar from accumulating again.
Local anesthesia is applied during the procedure, and you can expect some discomfort as your gums heal, but freeing yourself of gum disease and possible decay will prevent future complications like decay, and disease.
Don't put off that dentist's visit any longer, make an appointment today with Dr. McMillon of Hearthside Dentistry in Thornton, CO, by dialing (303) 280-2285.