Periodontal Treatment is done when a routine cleaning will no longer support the health of the gums and tissues surrounding the teeth.
Prophylaxis is the term for a “routine dental cleaning”. This involves the removal of plaque and hardened deposits (tartar or calculus) above the gum line with the intention of preventing cavities, gingivitis and periodontal disease. A Prophylaxis is performed in the dental office by the dental hygienist.
Full Mouth Debridment
Full Mouth Debridment is the removal of tarter and plaque from the teeth above and below the gum line. This procedure is different from the routine cleaning because of the need to clean the teeth below the surface of the gums therefore allowing the gums to heal and once again tighten against the teeth. Deposits that are not removed regularly can lead to periodontal disease and the need for further treatment. Sometimes a Full Mouth Debridment is needed when the tarter buildup is so thick that the dentist cannot evaluate the underlying tooth structure.
Scale and Root Planing
Commonly called a “deep cleaning”, Scale and Root Planing is the conventional, non-surgical approach to treating periodontal disease before it becomes severe. Scale and Root Planing is needed when the gums have started to pull away from the teeth and the roots have tartar on them, creating pockets and attacking the bone. Scale and Root Planing procedure is then followed up routinely every three months with a periodontal maintenance cleaning to maintain the attachment of the gums to the root surface.
Periodontal Maintenance is a maintenance cleaning designed to thoroughly clean the teeth, particularly concentrating below the gum line on patients who have had previous periodontal treatment. This is done to maintain the pockets and bone loss from progressing. Once a patient has periodontal disease the bone is more susceptible to bacteria and requires a more frequent and detailed cleaning schedule, usually every three months.