Scaling and root planning

Scaling and root planing is a careful cleaning of the root surfaces to remove plaque and calculus [tartar] from deep periodontal pockets and to smooth the tooth root to remove bacterial toxins. Scaling and root planing is often followed by adjunctive therapy such as local delivery antimicrobials and host modulation, as needed on a case-by-case basis.

Most periodontists would agree that after scaling and root planing, many patients do not require any further active treatment. However, the majority of patients will require ongoing maintenance therapy to sustain health.

Risk factors

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The main cause of periodontal (gum) disease is plaque, but other factors affect the health of your gums.

  • AGE
  • SMOKING/TOBACCO USE
  • GENETICS
  • STRESS
  • MEDICATIONS
  • CLENCHING OR GRINDING TEETH
  • OTHER SYSTEMIC DISEASES
  • POOR NUTRITION AND OBESITY

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Preventing periodontal disease

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Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is caused when bacteria in plaque (a sticky, colourless film that forms in the mouth) build up between the gums and teeth. When the bacteria begin to grow, the gums surrounding the tooth can become inflamed.