Deep Cleaning

What is Deep Cleaning?

Deep cleaning is the treatment of choice for gum disease that is known as periodontitis. So what is periodontal disease? Periodontal disease is the formation of plaque and bacteria around gums and teeth. Plaque is the formation of yellow film caused by food build up and bacteria in your mouth. When plaque build up mixes with saliva it hardens over time and turns to tartar. Tartar contains bacteria and as it grows it irritates the gums around the teeth by attaching to the outer surface of the teeth and roots. As tartar accumulates it releases poisonous toxins. These toxins cause infection and inflammation of the gums and worse, if untreated, they ultimately cause bone loss and eventually tooth loss. Keep in mind that the lost bone will never grow back. Fortunately, deep cleaning can help. Deep cleaning is a treatment that treats the infected area by meticulously removing tartar and bacteria from the teeth and their roots.

Deep cleaning, also known as scaling and root planning is normally performed by your dentist or hygienist. Often your dentist or your hygienist may choose to administer a local anesthetic to perform the procedure pain free. The deep cleaning is either done manually or with an ultrasonic instrument called a Cavitron. Both techniques loosen and remove the plaque and tartar buildup. In addition, laser gum therapy and anti-bacterial irrigation or local antibiotics such as Arestin may be used in conjunction with the cleaning procedure to further reduce the number of bacteria around the gums.

Also keep in mind that one of the following rare symptoms can occur after treatment.

What Should You Know?

  1. Bleeding of the gums for the next several days or couple weeks.
  2. Irritation of the gums.
  3. Tooth discomfort such as sensitivity to hot and cold or sweets.
  4. Swelling and inflammation of the gums.
  5. Allergic reaction.

You may ask yourself if you can get a regular cleaning instead?The answer is NO!

As the name deep cleaning implies, the main difference is that the deep cleaning goes below the gum to remove plaque and tartar buildup from the tooth root where the bone is harmed by the infection. To contrast, a regular cleaning only removes the plaque and tartar above the gum.

Periodontal disease can not currently be cured. It can only be controlled. So it is important to follow your dentist’s recommendations and to regularly have follow-up maintenance cleanings known as periodontal maintenance. In addition to routine check ups, performing proper hygiene care at home is also very important to prevent the recurrence of this destructive disease.

Please check with Dr. Baseri or a dental hygienist if you have further questions.