Scaling and Root Planing

Close up of a beautiful smile

Scaling and root planing is a non-surgical procedure, usually performed under local dental anesthesia to improve patient comfort.  The purpose of scaling and root planing is to remove the causative agents which cause inflammation to the gum tissue and surrounding bone – ig. dental plaque and tartar/calculus.  During the scaling process, specialized dental instruments are used to remove dental plaque and calculus from beneath the gums. Planing is the procedure used to smooth the tooth’s root after the scaling process. Root planing helps the gums heal and reattach themselves to a cleaner and smoother root surface.

Patient had scaling and root planing (with local anesthesia) completed on the right side of her mouth only.

After 1 week, the tissue tone is markedly improved – healthy and pink. Notice that the inflamed tissue has shrunken. The teeth and root surfaces are clean and smooth.

On the left side, notice the plaque and tartar accumulation, resulting in severe inflammation – redness, bleeding, puffiness of gum tissue.