Gum disease that has advanced beyond the milder gingivitis stage will require more specialized and intensive treatment. One intervention that is often used for periodontitis (advanced gum disease) is root planing. This technique polishes or smooths the surfaces of the roots of the teeth to remove any rough spots where disease-causing bacteria might congregate.
A periodontist typically performs root planing in conjunction with scaling, which is a thorough cleaning of the tooth underneath the gum tissue. Scaling removes plaque and calculus from underneath the gumline, where it can cause significant inflammation.
Patients usually see a periodontist for scaling and root planing because these specialists have dedicated expertise in treating conditions that affect the gum tissue and the underlying bone structures. They complete a post-graduate residency after dental school that focuses on in-depth education and hands-on experience in this specialty.
It’s important to consult with a periodontist as soon in your gum disease process as possible. Scaling and root planing is non-invasive, but if you ignore symptoms of gum disease and the condition advances, you may find yourself in need of a surgical treatment to repair receded gum tissue or even restore missing teeth and bone. Early action is essential in reducing your risk of these negative outcomes.
Furthermore, your risk of a relapse is rather high after experiencing an initial episode of gum disease. Therefore, you should continue to follow with a specialist for ongoing monitoring so that any future gum disease can be treated as promptly as possible.
A scaling and root planing procedure should result in minimal discomfort, and you should be able to go about with your normal routine after your appointment. Your provider will educate you on any specific instructions for self-care after the procedure.
Root planing can be an important tool in your battle to prevent advanced gum disease. To learn more about the techniques used in this treatment and how it may benefit you, contact the office of Dr. Duval and schedule your consultation today.