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Root Planning – Causes, Procedure and Aftercare

Root planning is a dental procedure in which the root surface of teeth is smoothen and polished. Rough surface of teeth is the ideal breeding ground for the calculus and bacteria. In addition to smoothing, this process also scraps away any remnant of plaque and calculus left in these rough spots that could not be drained off properly during the process of tooth scaling.

Tooth scaling

What Simulates Root Planning

Gum diseases lead to root planning which is also termed as gingivitis/ Periodontal diseases. In simple terms gingivitis is a mild gum problem in which the gums bleed and it becomes inflamed. Periodontal disease is somewhat more severe, and in this condition bones holding your teeth are damaged. If you are suffering from gingivitis, your dentist may recommend to brush and floss properly every day at home, but if you’re a patient of Periodontics, the only remedy is root planning and scaling, which can be done to heal your gums and save your teeth without resorting to surgery.

Gum Diseases the Culprit

Gum diseases are irritating and painful and mostly lead to teeth loose. It’s also associated with a greater susceptibility of related health issues, as it invites bacteria into your body, resulting in inflammation. This situation triggers formation of a protein that promotes heart disease and stroke. The immune system of your body uses its potential to fight this inflammation, thus putting pressure on your immune system to keep you safe from disease.

What is Root Planning

If it is suggested by your dentist that you are suffering from periodontal issue, root planning is generally the first treatment that is recommended. It is non-surgical treatment. It may be painful for some, while for others it may be just somewhat discomforting. In this process the dentist would facilitate local anesthetic to desensitize your mouth prior to beginning the procedure as local anesthetic will help you remain unaware of the feeling of pain during the process. It will also make you feel some kind of pressure of the devices inside your mouth.

During scaling process your teeth are smoothened to ward of any bacteria to sink in. Earlier the treatment is done, the better it is.

Procedure of Root Planning

In case of slight gingivitis, root planning is generally done in a single appointment. In case of severe periodontal issue, more visits would be suggested. Your Periodontistwould scale a quarter of your mouth (teeth) on every visit.

During this process you may feel some serious discomfort often, especially if you have receding gums and it has exposed the sensitive root surface or if you are suffering from abrasions. Working on root parts of exposed dentin using dental devices can be very painful. To simmer down the discomfort, local anesthetic is applied to numb these parts for proper treatment.

First Phase

Root planning is usually done with a fusion of ultrasonic and hand held devices also termed as dental scalers. Various instruments are utilized for different teeth, and also for various surfaces of the same tooth. Initially, with the help of ultrasonic scalers the huge deposits of calculus and plaque are removed from the surface and roots of the teeth. These instruments are used by vibrating the tip of the instrument in a high frequency, coupled with a water irrigating system to wash away the debris and the water channel keeps cooling the treated area to avoid high temperature due to the instrument. These vibrations help removing the dental plaque and keeping the tooth’s surface intact.

Second Phase

In the second phase of cleaning another devices – hand dental scalers are brought to use for completing the teeth scaling by scraping off any left out calculus in the first phase of cleaning, particularly trapped between pockets of the tooth and gums under the gum line. This device is available in various sizes and shapes with balled or pointed tips.

Third Phase

In the last stage of cleaning, the dentist will perform the root planning of your irregular surfaces of your roots to offer a smooth surface to avoid accumulation of plaque. This stage is very vital in root planning process as it prevents recurring of the same problem in future.

A sleek clean root is instrumental in offering a healthy environment allowing the gums to recuperate completely and snug with the tooth. It also creates small pocket, thus avoid offering any hiding place for bacteria and causing further disease.

Root Planning and Scaling Aftercare

In root planning you can go home for rest once the entire process is complete and you do not need to stay in the hospital. Albeit, it is not a surgery, still you would be advised by the dentist to take extra care of your teeth and gums after the root scaling to help your gums and teeth heal faster.

As your dentist administered anesthetic, it is a necessary stop chewing as you may bite your lips of tongue without knowing, being under influence of anesthesia. You may also be suggested by your dentist to take some over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen, to help discomfort from pain and swelling. You may be asked to visit your physician in some interval of time to get the antibiotic fibers taken off from your gums, if it has been administered in the procedures.

Right oral hygiene stimulates the healing process which includes brushing, flossing, and using a mouthwash to ward off the formation of plaque. Post procedure the process of brushing and flossing is more painful, you can use toothpaste specifically meant for sensitive teeth.

Root planning is one of the major dental treatment and procedure that is performed on those individuals who have severe periodontal disease! Your mouth is considered as the doorway to your body and if the gateway is weak a great health can never be achieved. Irrespective of your age, paying good attention to your dental health will not only keep you healthy but will also add to the overall health of your body giving you long life! So, take good care of dental health!