Is Scale and Root Planing Painful

The answer is relative to your pain threshold and the extent of the scaling and root planing that was necessary for you. Relatively speaking, the procedure is not painful. You might experience some discomfort when finished but the procedure can be completed with the administration of a local anesthetic to minimize any unpleasant feelings through the process.

Why Would You Need Scaling and Root Planing?

About half of all American adults today have some stage of gum disease. The only way to eliminate the gum disease is to eliminate the source. Every single day we all have millions of bacteria in our mouths. If the bacteria are allowed to remain it develops a sticky material on your teeth called plaque. This plaque continues to build up collecting particles, sugars, and acids and these elements will attack the surface enamel of the teeth. This process creates cavities. If you do not remove this plaque daily, it will travel down the tooth and below the gum line. Immediately the bacteria in the plaque starts an infection in the soft tissue. The gums will become tender to the touch, swell, become inflamed, and begin to sag away from the teeth. These pockets catch more unwanted particles accelerating the regression. By going through the scaling and root planing process you remove this source of the infection, and the gums will begin to heal naturally immediately.

What is the Scale and Root Planing Process?

When you have your teeth professionally cleaned by your dentist or the hygienist, the same hand-held instrument will be used to scrape the stubborn plaque from the surface of the teeth. An ultrasonic instrument can also be used with a vibrating tip to chip away the plaque. Either way it is a deliberate manual process in which the time it takes is dictated by the amount of plaque to be removed and the condition of your gums. A local anesthetic can minimize any discomfort during the procedure. Once the plaque and tartar has been removed the tooth and root will be smooth again allowing the gums to heal and close back around the tooth. The process might be done in one appointment or as many as four, addressing each quadrant depending on the severity of the plaque and tartar buildup.

The Discomfort through the Healing

Initially following the procedure your gums will be tender and a little sore. But with the plaque removed they will heal very quickly, within days, as evident by the return of a nice pink color.
The Benefits of having the Scale and Root Planing Procedure

It is the only treatment to reverse gum disease. After your procedure is completed, you will be strongly encouraged to start and constantly practice good oral hygiene at home. The health industry suggests you should brush slowly twice a day and floss at least once. These two simple efforts remove the plaque every day which then prevents it from building up on your teeth. You will also be encouraged to schedule an appointment every six months for regular evaluations and professional cleaning to compliment your efforts and to keep your teeth and gums healthy. Your smile will benefit as well.

Scale and Root Planing Aftercare