Periodontal disease occurs when there has been slow gradual bone loss that causes the gum to recede to the lowered bone level, creating a pocket susceptible to infection and the buildup of plaque.
In order to mend these pockets, the first step is to start with deep periodontal cleaning, often with local anesthetic (for comfort), which is different than your regular dental cleaning. The majority of people respond favorably to this periodontal hygiene and do not require any more than ongoing maintenance therapy to sustain health.
Scaling, polishing, and sometimes curettage are used to manage periodontal disease. The dental hygienist or practitioner uses instruments to remove calculus. The plaque is scraped from above and below the gum line (called scaling). When the probe contacts the rock-like calculus, deposits fracture off the tooth fairly efficiently.
The rough spots on the tooth are then smoothed to remove bacteria that collect there (root planing) and to help the gums reattach.
The procedure is followed by polishing with an abrasive paste to remove plaque and stains on the crown portion of the tooth. It produces a smooth surface, making it temporarily harder for plaque to adhere.
After the cleaning procedure, the dentist will check the pocket depths around the teeth after the cleaning process has been completed. Further treatment needs are determined by the results of these initial sessions.
Patients are given thorough instructions on home care to ensure the removal of bacteria on a daily basis. This includes proper use of the toothbrush, paste, mouth rinses, floss, floss threaders, and proxabrushes. Home care can effectively eliminate the plaque above the gums and down to 2 mm below the gums.