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Periodontal Scaling

Gum disease is a serious oral health issue, although it does not always seem that way in the beginning. What starts as red, swollen gums can quickly turn to gum recession, loose teeth, and tooth loss. When gum disease strikes, treatment right away is essential. At Lisa Gitelson, DMD, we can treat gum disease, giving your mouth an opportunity to heal, with periodontal scaling.

How Does Gum Disease Progress?

Gum disease begins when a buildup of plaque and bacteria collect on your teeth and irritate your sensitive gum tissue. This irritation triggers an inflammatory response, which causes your gums to begin swelling. Red, swollen gums, which often bleed when you brush and floss, are the first indications of gum disease. Unfortunately, these symptoms often go untreated because they are unnoticed or written off as aggressive oral hygiene. When it goes untreated, gum disease only continues to get worse.

Your swollen gums begin pulling away from your teeth, breaking the seal that protects the roots of your teeth. Bacteria begin collecting in these pockets. They continue attacking your gums, causing more inflammation and deeper pockets. They also start attacking your periodontal ligaments and your jawbone. Eventually, your gums begin to recede and your teeth become loose. Your teeth may even fall out on their own, or they may need to be extracted.

What is Periodontal Scaling?

In the event of gum disease, getting treatment immediately is important for putting a stop to its progression. A periodontal scaling is a deep cleaning of the surfaces of your teeth, with special attention paid to the gum line and inside the periodontal pockets. We use a scaler to scrape the surfaces of your teeth, eliminating all of the buildup from your teeth, including plaque, bacteria, and other debris. We are also able to remove tartar, or calculus, which is a calcified plaque that cannot be removed no matter how much you brush. Tartar is not only hard, but it is also rough in texture, which makes it efficient at collecting new buildup.

While scaling is a noninvasive procedure, we still administer a local anesthetic. This is done to ensure your comfort, as your gums may be tender. We may break your periodontal cleaning up into two separate appointments so that you avoid having your whole mouth numb at once. The procedure typically takes 30 minutes to an hour to complete, depending upon the extent of the buildup. In more severe cases, it may take longer than an hour. Once your treatment is complete, your gums can begin to heal and reattach properly to your teeth.

Further Treatment with Periodontal Maintenance

While a periodontal scaling is effective at removing buildup from the surfaces of your teeth, one treatment may not be enough. Typically, you return for a follow-up visit 6 to 8 weeks following your initial treatment, where we check to make sure that it is working. If we find that your gums are not healing properly, we may recommend periodontal maintenance.

Periodontal maintenance is a series of regularly scheduled visits where we examine your teeth, checking your teeth, gums, and the depth of your periodontal pockets. After we examine your teeth, we provide another scaling to remove any buildup that may have accumulated between visits. Depending upon your situation, periodontal maintenance visits may be as often as every two months, or as far apart as six months.

With periodontal scaling, we can help to stop the progression of gum disease, giving your gums the opportunity they need to begin healing and reattaching properly to your teeth. If you suspect gum disease, do not wait. Call Lisa Gitelson, DMD to schedule your consultation today at (503) 985-8945.

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Lisa Gitelson, DMD
14300 SW Pacific Hwy
Tigard, OR 97224
(503) 985-8945
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Lisa Gitelson, DMD | | (503) 985-8945
14300 SW Pacific Hwy, Tigard, OR 97224



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