Scaling and Root Planing

Gum disease is a very prevalent issue in our current society. Quite a large number of adults, and sometimes children, suffer with this issue. Gum disease is caused by plaque and bad bacteria building up under the gums causing an infection. This is usually due to a lack of oral hygiene. If gum disease is left untreated, it can turn into periodontal disease which means it has moved into the jawbone. Gum disease, at most levels, is largely treated by a process called scaling and root planing.

Scaling and Root Planing Scaling and Root Planing Dr. Aaron Wildung DDS Family Dental Phoenix General, Cosmetic, Restorative, Preventative, Family Dentist in Phoenix, AZ 85021


When symptoms such as bad breath, loose gums (or deeper pockets within the gums), and tartar buildup appear, a scaling and root planning may be suggested by your dentist. During this procedure, calculus and tartar buildup are removed from the tooth as well as the root of the tooth. The roots of the teeth are then smooth of any rough surfaces so the loose gum can then adhere back to the tooth and heal.


This process can feel slightly uncomfortable and is likened to that of removing a splinter. However, some cases can involve a bit more pain at which point, a local anesthetic may be used in order to alleviate any discomfort. Some cases may involve more than one visit to accomplish a full scaling and root planing. However, most are usually accomplished in one visit.

At your follow up visit, your dentist will check to see if your gums are healing. This means they will be checking to see if your gums are returning to their pinkish color instead of a darker red color. They will also be checking to see if the swelling has reduced in the gums and if they are starting to gain their firmness back. If so, this is a good sign. If not, the dentist will suggest more maintenance tips for a better healing process.

If you’re having issues with your gums, please give us a call so we can assist you with your concerns.