Dental Scaling: What You Need to Know

Published on: May 11, 2019 By: Urbandale Smiles Posted in: Dental Health

If you have gum disease and plaque buildup, your dentist may recommend a dental scaling and cleaning. Dental scaling is a non-invasive procedure to treat gum disease, remove plaque and tartar from the teeth, and restore gum health. Also, for severe gum disease that requires surgery, your dentist may recommend teeth cleaning and scaling before the surgery. Dental scaling and cleaning should be added as a part of your regular dental checkup. 

dental scaling and cleaning
When Do You Need Dental Scaling?

The proteins, bacteria, and saliva in your mouth form a thin layer that covers your teeth all the time. When you eat sugars, tiny particles and acid from your food stick onto this thin layer, resulting in plaque buildup. The bacteria in the plaque can cause tooth decay and gum disease. Healthy gum pockets will be less than 3 millimeters deep. However, if you have pockets of 4 millimeters depth or more, your dentist may recommend dental scaling to treat the gum disease and remove plaque from under the gum line. 

How Is Dental Scaling Performed?

Dental scaling is performed using two types of instruments:

Hand-held Instruments - Your dentist will use a dental scalar and curette to remove the plaque manually.  They insert these tools beneath the gum line to reach the areas of plaque buildup and rough spots.

Ultrasonic Instrument - This instrument contains a vibrating metal tip and a cool water spray. The tip chips off the plaque and the water spray is used to wash it away. 

After Dental Scaling 

After dental scaling, you may experience a slight discomfort around your teeth for a few days and increased sensitivity for up to 4 to 6 weeks. Your dentist may suggest medicated toothpaste and mouthwash to help ease this discomfort. Proper brushing and flossing will help you to prevent plaque formation in the same areas. Your dentist will advise a follow-up visit to examine your gums, measure the depth of your gum pockets, and ensure that your mouth is healing properly. 

What Foods to Avoid After Dental Scaling?

For faster healing, you should avoid chewy, acidic, and sticky foods including citrus fruits, fruit juice, dried fruits, chocolates, and more. Other types of food that may get stuck in your gums are nuts, chips, and popcorn.

For further information on dental scaling and cleaning treatment or to schedule a dental appointment with an expert at Urbandale Smiles, contact us today! We are proud to offer the best periodontic dentistry services in Urbandale.

Related Read:

Professional Teeth Cleaning - Is It Harmful?

Don't Ignore Gum Disease: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment Options


Urbandale Smiles

Urbandale Smiles is a leading dental care service provider in Urbandale, IA. We value our patients and take pride in providing them comprehensive care and high-quality dental services aided by modern technology and sophisticated tools that are current in the dental care industry.

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