WHAT IS DENTAL SCALING ?
Scaling or dental cleaning and polishing is a common dental procedure that involves removing all the deposits that have built over time from the teeth. These deposits include plaque and calculus or tartar. The process of scaling and root planning is called deep cleaning.
Dental scaling is routinely performed to help patients with gum disease called pyorrhea.
BENEFITS OF DENTAL SCALING
Dental scaling is beneficial to-
- Prevent periodontal disease– To remove tartar or calculus that prevents gum diseases and prevents further gum recession, loosening of teeth, and tooth loss.
- Remove stains-To remove stains of tobacco and drinks( tea, coffee, wine)
- Prevent dental caries– To do screening for other oral diseases like dental cavities.
- Prevents bad breath-To treat bleeding gums and halitosis/bad breath.
WHY IS DENTAL SCALING NECESSARY?
A thin layer of saliva, proteins, and bacteria is always present in everyone’s mouth. When you eat, tiny particles, sugar, and acid from the food stick to this film and lead to the formation of plaque. The bacteria in this plaque can cause gum disease and dental caries.
Dental scaling is done to remove this bacteria and tartar from the teeth leaving a smooth and beautifully clean surface. The bacteria are unable to stick to the teeth now and it gives you a better chance to maintain good oral hygiene. It is an effective way to deal with the disease at an early stage and to avoid further complications like periodontitis and tooth loss.
WHAT ARE THE PROCEDURES THAT ARE INVOLVED IN SCALING AND POLISHING?
Scaling is done with the help of specialized instruments called ultrasonic scalers. It uses ultrasonic vibrations to loosen the tartar deposited on or between the teeth surfaces. Plaque and calculus deposits are gently removed without causing any harm to the teeth. Water spray is used to wash away the debris. Sometimes scaling is also done with hand instruments called dental scalers and curettes too.
Polishing is done after scaling to remove stains and leave your teeth shiny and smooth. Polishing is done with a soft rubber cup and a prophylactic paste which is a toothpaste-like material.
There is another method of polishing called PROPHY-JET. It is an air-polishing system in which a slurry of air, water, and sodium bicarbonate is used to remove soft debris and extrinsic stains.
Scaling and polishing are done usually in one sitting or sometimes in two sittings. It will take around 1 hour to complete the procedure.
IS SCALING PAINFUL?
Scaling is not at all painful but if you feel slight discomfort then that can also be taken care of by your dentist by numbing the area with a topical anesthetic spray and the whole procedure will be comfortable. Many of our patients in fact enjoy dental cleaning and love the smoothness of their beautifully cleaned teeth afterward.
Sensitivity to hot and cold may increase after scaling and root planning if there is an exposed root surface or gum tissues are infected. This issue of sensitivity can be handled with desensitizer toothpaste and you will feel normal in 24 to 48 hours.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN TEETH WHITENING AND SCALING AND POLISHING?
Teeth whitening is a cosmetic procedure that is used to lighten the pigmentation of teeth or stains which are present inside the teeth.
Dental Scaling and polishing are done to remove plaque, tartar, and external stains of tea or coffee. It is done to make the gum tissues healthier and it lightens the color of teeth as extrinsic stains are removed due to polishing.
Dental scaling and polishing is a common treatment that is necessary to improve the overall health of your gums. If there is a need for scaling, then schedule your appointment to maintain a healthy oral cavity. If your dentist is suggesting root planing and deep cleaning, then don’t hesitate. The result will definitely be a healthier and more beautiful smile that you are going to enjoy.