We put our teeth through a lot over the course of our lives, putting our teeth through the mechanical process of chewing over 2.5 million times, on average. If we don’t take perfect care of our teeth every day or visit a dentist regularly, we’re bound to get plaque and tartar buildup on our teeth and around our gum lines.
Plaque + Tartar
Plaque is a sticky, colorless material that adheres to our teeth, finding a safe home in between our teeth and around our gums, in the margin where our teeth and gum line meets. While plaque is usually destroyed by simply brushing and flossing, sometimes it stays in and around our teeth and calcifies, becoming tartar. Tartar can sometimes have a yellowish color and can no longer be removed by traditional oral hygiene at home. When you visit a dentist for a cleaning, your hygienist typically uses a hand scalar to remove the tartar. If not removed, tartar can lead to cavities, gingivitis, and then periodontitis.
What is Dental Scaling?
Dental scaling is how we remove tartar from your teeth and gum lines, using either mechanical or electronic tools to assist us. Since scaling removes tartar from around the gum line, it enables the gum to heal, reducing inflammation over time.
Scaling and Root Planing involves removing plaque and bacteria underneath the gums and around the roots, making sure your periodontal area is healthy.
This treatment starts with a thorough cleaning that may include scaling to remove plaque and tartar deposits beneath the gum line, making sure any pockets that have developed between your teeth and gums are free of bacteria. Tooth roots can also be planed to smooth the root surface, giving room for gum tissue to heal and reattach to the tooth.
In some cases, your bite can need readjusting. We might recommend antibiotics or that patients rinse with antimicrobials to help stop the growth of bacteria that cause periodontitis. In some cases, Dr. Niakiani places antibiotic fibers in the gum pockets after scaling and planning to control infection and encourage normal healing.
As a non-invasive procedure, dental scaling is incredibly safe and typically isn’t painful at all. The procedure generally has extremely positive effects on our patient’s dental and overall health.
If you have any lingering questions about plaque, tartar, dental scaling or your dental health, or if you would like to schedule a dental exam, please contact our team or make an appointment. Our incredible staff will give you the best dental care possible.
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