Many patients at Smiles of Elgin are surprised to learn that they have early gum disease, also known as gingivitis. The reason this catches them off guard is because they take excellent care of their oral health by brushing and flossing daily in addition to coming in for bi-annual checkups. Unfortunately, this isn’t always enough. By age 30, about half of all adults have gum disease. This jumps to three-quarters by age 60. At Smiles of Elgin, our dentists can help you reverse gingivitis with deep cleaning of teeth.
What Happens During a Deep Cleaning Session?
Patients sometimes feel confused because the terms deep cleaning, scaling, and root planing are used interchangeably. A deep cleaning session may involve one or both of these procedures. Scaling means that a dental hygienist scrapes the dental tartar from the surface of your teeth. This happens during a regular cleaning as well, but he or she typically uses more pressure and concentrates on each area longer when you come in for deep cleaning. Root planing involves smoothing out the surfaces around the roots to eliminate gum pockets or discourage them from forming in the future.
On the day of your deep cleaning appointment, you will receive an anesthetic to numb the area of your mouth undergoing scaling or root planing. We typically only complete one quadrant of your mouth at a time. This means that Dr. Hao, or Dr. Amuyan works on the top left, top right, bottom left, or bottom right in one appointment. You will need to schedule one to three additional appointments depending on how many of your teeth require deep cleaning.
Your Partner in Excellent Oral Health
We understand that staying ahead of gum disease can be challenging, especially as you get older. For most patients, scaling and root planing is enough to reverse the damage. Others may require minor oral surgery for gum pockets that are difficult to remove. Feel free to contact us at any time with questions about gum disease prevention and treatment or the procedures we use to treat it.