Scaling & Root Planing

Sometimes gum disease will progress to a point that requires the intervention of a dentist. A common treatment plan in this case is the use of scaling and root planing. It is common to begin the treatment with a local anesthetic. The dentist will then use an instrument called a scaler which removes the plaque and tartar from underneath your gum line. Once the cleaning has been done, the root surfaces of your tooth will be planed and smoothed so that the gums will have an easier time reattaching to the teeth after use of the scaler. Some dentists may use antibiotic fibers in between your teeth and gums to encourage healing and lower the chances of infection after the cleaning. The dentist will remove the fibers approximately a week after he has done the cleaning.


Daily flossing and brushing is a necessary part of avoiding gum disease.

However, root planing and scaling is a wonderful way to deal with any gum disease that begins to develop. Usually, this treatment will eliminate the need for more serious treatment. Because of the anesthesia, your lips and gums may possibly be numb for several hours after your treatment. However, the use of the anesthesia should keep you from suffering any pain or discomfort.

You will want to follow up a planing and scaling treatment with consistent brushing and flossing to maintain healthy teeth and gums.

The stages of periodontal disease

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  • I have a fear of needles, and due to that, I had let the condition of my teeth and mouth deteriorate. Thanks to the patience and gentle care of Dr. Shelly and his staff, I was able to have my teeth put back into great condition. Several long procedures were performed with sedation dentistry. During these procedures, I had no discomfort or pain. I am now a firm believer in sedation dentistry and Dr. Shelly in particular. I would recommend Dr. Shelly and his staff to anyone.
  • I just wanted to say thank you to Dr. Lee & Dr. Fort for taking the time to provide the care I needed on such short notice yesterday to get me in for the root canal. I feel SO MUCH BETTER!!! For the first time in over a week, I had a great night's sleep last night! As with all of the staff and three doctors, I am so glad you are all such caring, pleasant, professional people to deal with on a consistent basis. Thank you!
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  • Just a short note to thank everyone for the wonderful, patient, and caring treatment I received at your office. My anxiety level was sky high when I arranged to have the extensive dental work done; no one could have been more afraid than I was, but you all made it easy for me and thanks to the sedation help, I breezed through it. Many, many thanks to all! P.S. I’m really enjoying having a mouthful of beautiful teeth and chewing is a pleasure!
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