Do Root Planning And Scaling Hurt?

Do Root Planning And Scaling Hurt?

May 01, 2023

Regular brushing, flossing, and professional cleanings are excellent ways to keep your mouth clean and disease-free. However, despite your oral hygiene efforts, there’s still a risk of developing bacterial infections like gum disease and tooth decay, especially in the mouth’s hard-to-reach areas.

If you have developed gum disease, your dentist can recommend dental scaling and root planing to remove the infection, prevent further damage, and restore the health of your gums. Keep reading to learn more about dental scaling and root planning procedures and why they are necessary.

Why is root planning and scaling necessary?

Also known as deep cleaning, root planing, and scaling is a dental procedure used to treat gum disease. When your gums are inflamed or infected by bacteria, plaque can enter under the gum line, causing the gums to detach from the teeth (gum recession).

Over time, more plaque and tartar accumulate under the gum line, creating deeper pockets. If not treated promptly, these deep pockets expose the tooth’s roots and bone, causing your tooth to become loose or fall. It can also lead to bone loss and damage to other teeth-supporting tissues.

Our dentist in San Jose, CA, can recommend a dental scaling and root planing procedure to prevent these issues. Unlike regular dental cleanings that entail removing plaque and tartar on teeth and above the gum line, deep cleaning removes bacterial plaque and tartar above and below the gum line, deep in gum pockets, and around the tooth’s roots. Sometimes root planing and scaling treatment is combined with medication and surgery.

Some of the benefits of deep cleaning include the following:

  • It helps stop the progression of gum disease
  • It treats gum disease and recession
  • Promote faster healing for your gums
  • Prevents bone and teeth loss
  • It allows the gums to reattach to the teeth snugly and regain health quickly.
  • Root planing also makes it harder for plaque and bacteria to reattach to the teeth roots, keeping your teeth healthy.
  • Gets rid of bad breath and pain

Dental scaling and root planning procedure

Deep cleaning is an outpatient treatment that a general dentist or periodontist can perform. Based on the severity of your condition, you can complete the procedure in one or more appointments.

The dentist will begin the procedure by numbing you to make you comfortable and painless. The dentist will start with dental scaling. In this case, they can use either manual scaling or ultrasonic instruments.

With manual instruments, the dentist uses a dental scaler and curette to remove and scale plaque and tartar from the teeth and below the gum line manually. On the other hand, ultrasonic scaling involves using a vibrating metal tip that chips and breaks down plaque and tartar. Then, a high-speed water spray washes away the debris. The water spray also helps keep the metal tip cool.

Root planing takes place under the gum line. The dentist gently pushes the gums aside to expose the deep pockets and roots. Then, they use scaling tools to remove plaque and tartar and smoothen the tooth’s roots. Sometimes the dentist can inject an antibiotic directly into the gum pockets to prevent the bacteria from recolonizing.

Your dentist can also prescribe antimicrobial agents or oral antibiotics for several days. After healing, your gums should rapidly restore a healthy, pink, and firm appearance. Excellent oral hygiene and diet are essential to keep your gums healthy and prevent re-infection. Visit our dentist near you for deep cleaning treatment.

Is Root Planing and Scaling Painful?

During a deep cleaning, the dentist will always numb you to make the procedure painless. However, after the anesthetic wears off, you might feel minor soreness or discomfort around the treated areas. Fortunately, you can take the following steps to manage the discomfort, prevent re-infections, and promote faster healing:

  • Take medication as prescribed
  • Take soft and cool foods. Avoid hard, chewy, and crunchy foods.
  • Avoid hot, spicy, sugary, or acidic foods and beverages
  • Hydrate well
  • Use an ice pack on the cheek against the painful area
  • Brush gently around the treated area
  • Wait until the anesthetic wears off to eat
  • Use salt water rinses

Learn more about Periodontal Treatment in San Jose, CA

Do you have gum disease or recession? A dental scaling and root planing procedure can help restore your oral health. Contact Neeshat S. Khan, DDS, to begin your treatment today.



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