Why Do I Need a Deep Cleaning?

Patient in dental chair

Many people may wonder why their dentist has suggested they need to get a deep cleaning done. Deep cleaning is different from a routine cleaning as it is used to treat periodontal (gum) disease whereas a routine cleaning is used to prevent the disease.

What is Periodontal (gum) Disease?

Periodontal (gum) Disease is an infection which affects the tissue and bone that support your teeth. When this tissue and bone is compromised by an infection, it may result in tooth loss.

“If you have inflamed gums and it’s gone beyond inflammation and you have begun to lose bone around your teeth, that is considered periodontal disease and a typical cleaning will not solve the problem”, says our hygienist.

According to the American Dental Association, 47.2% of adults over 30 in the United States have chronic periodontitis (gum) disease that is more severe than just gingivitis.

What Causes Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal Disease is caused by plaque. Plaque contains bacteria which can irritate and inflame the gums if it is not removed by cleaning your teeth. Once the gums are inflamed, they can pull away from your teeth creating pockets which collect more bacteria. The infected pockets need to be treated as soon as possible to prevent the gum disease from getting worse and causing tooth loss. These pockets can not be cleaned with regular brushing.

What is a Deep Cleaning?

A deep cleaning is a tooth cleaning procedure that may require more time than a routine cleaning as extensive tartar and plaque are cleaned away from under the gum line. This is known as dental scaling. Once the tartar and plaque are removed, your roots are smoothed down so that your gums reattach to the tooth roots. This is called root planning.

Depending on how sensitive your gums have become your dentist may give you a local anesthetic to make the procedure more comfortable for you.  

How often should it be done?

Our hygienist Tanya says, “We recommend every 3 to 4 months depending on how well you respond to the deep cleaning.”

Having regular dental checkups is the best way to catch periodontal (gum) disease in its early stages. Periodontal disease is treatable and we are here to help. Call our office to set up your next checkup and don’t forget to floss daily and brush your teeth twice a day to prevent periodontal (gum) disease.

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