Periodontal scaling and root planing, also known as a deep cleaning or ‘teeth scaling’, is the first line of defense against periodontitis, periodontal disease, or gum disease.
While scaling and root planing is highly effective for reversing the early stages of gum disease and preventing the spread of this disease, it can also leave your mouth feeling a bit tender.
Here’s what you need to know about tooth scaling and root planing pain, procedure, and aftercare:
What is teeth scaling?
Teeth scaling involves the removal of bacteria and plaque around the gum line. It involves scraping plaque from the tooth, using a metal tool known as a dental scaler or curette.
By scaling the surfaces of the teeth, from the crown to the roots, our periodontists can clean the areas of the teeth where your toothbrush can’t reach and remove disease-causing bacteria to stop gum disease from progressing.
Is scaling teeth painful?
Teeth scaling and root planing can be uncomfortable. During this procedure, our periodontists are performing a deep cleaning, intended to thoroughly disinfect the teeth and gum line.
To help ease root scaling and planing pain or discomfort, we will administer a local anesthetic, and we can also provide nitrous oxide analgesia to help alleviate apprehension!
After the procedure, we recommend taking Extra Strength Tylenol or similar over the counter medications, like Advil or Motrin. You may experience teeth scaling side effects, like swollen or bleeding gums, tenderness and sensitivity in the mouth.
It’s best to eat a soft food diet while your mouth recovers, and avoid spicy foods, hot food and drinks, and highly acidic food and drinks.
After about a week, the discomfort should subside and you should be able to return to your normal diet and oral hygiene routine.
How Scaling & Root Planing Can Benefit You
Though your mouth may feel a bit uncomfortable after your scaling and root planing treatment, the benefits of this treatment far exceed the temporary discomfort.
Scaling and root planing is the only way to truly reverse gum disease, as long as it’s performed before the disease progresses too far and damages the teeth and jaw bones. Treating gum disease is time sensitive!
Once your teeth are clean after your scaling and root planing treatment, it’ll be easier for you to maintain great oral hygiene again. This treatment helps you keep your beautiful natural teeth so you can smile confidently for a lifetime.
Have questions about scaling and root planing pain?
Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us with any questions. We’re here to support you and your gums, and we do everything we can to help you feel comfortable during your treatment!