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3699 S Airport Road West, Traverse City, MI 49684

Scaling and Root Planing (Deep Cleaning, Gum Treatment) - Traverse City, MI

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About SRP

Scaling and root planing, sometimes called a deep cleaning, is a common procedure for the treatment of the first stages of periodontal disease (gingivitis) that does not respond to home care and regular dental cleanings. During scaling, the dental plaque and calculus around the crown and root surfaces of the teeth is removed, and root planing requires scaling the root of the tooth. The goal of root planing is to remove the roughened cementum and dentin that has absorbed significant amounts of calculus and microorganisms. At Yancho Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Traverse City, MI, board-certified dentist Dr. Phillip Yancho uses ultrasonic tools to complete the scaling procedure because they provide the best disruption of biofilms. After the scaling process is completed the tooth roots may be planed to smooth the surface area and make it easier for the gum tissue to reattach to the tooth. In some cases, antibiotics may be used to help eliminate the potential for bacterial infection as the mouth heals. A simple saliva test can be done to determine what specific bacteria is causing the patient's infection. This test helps Dr. Yancho to determine which antibiotic will work best. 

What to Expect

Scaling and root planing is performed in the dentist’s office with local anesthesia on the areas being treated and/or sedation to help the patient remain calm and comfortable. The dentist begins by using a manual scaling tool or an ultrasonic cleaner to reach all areas of the gum pocket and remove the plaque and tartar that has built up. Once the gum pocket is cleaned, the dentist will smooth or plane the surface of the tooth to minimize areas where plaque and tartar can become trapped. Once the gum pockets are clean and smooth, they can begin to heal and reattach properly to the tooth root.

Treatment Aftercare

After the scaling and root planing treatment, patients might have some inflammation or bleeding of the gums, but this should only last for a few days. Patients should continue or start a daily oral health care routine that includes brushing at least twice a day, flossing, and following any special instructions by the dentist. Patients should return in 2 – 4 months to have their gums re-checked by the dentist. A second treatment may be needed to fully restore the gums or the dentist may refer the patient to a periodontist for special treatment.

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Stop Gum Disease Early

Scaling and root planing can stop early signs of gum disease, including inflamed and bleeding gums, as well as bad breath and loose teeth. A dentist can catch these signs early during an annual dental exam and treat the problem effectively with scaling and root planing treatment.

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*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.