Healthy Gums for a Healthy Smile

Deep cleaning teeth in our Northwest Houston or Cypress Dental offices is a common treatment for patients experiencing gum and periodontal disease. This procedure is often performed by a dental hygienist. The dental hygienist will start by measuring the area around your teeth for pocketing. The deep spaces that develop due to the destruction of the tissue surrounding teeth by bacteria is called pocketing. If left untreated bacteria within these periodontal pockets worsen the pocketing and can lead to tooth loss. A healthy pocket is less than 3 millimeters deep according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR). If the pocket larger than 5 millimeters the a treatment known as deep scaling and root planing may be necessary.

What is Scaling and Root Planing?

Scaling and root planing, also known as deep cleaning or deep gum cleaning, is a treatment that removes dental plaque or tartar from tooth surfaces, or scaling, and then smoothing the exposed areas of the roots, or planing. Calculus, not to be confused with the branch of mathematics loved by many of weary college students, and commonly known as tartar, along with toxins and microorganisms are the main causes of gingivitis (inflammation) of the gums. Teeth scaling, or periodontal scaling, is the first part of the produce where a dentist or hygienist removes all plaque and tartar above or below the gumline. Root planing, or periodontal planing, is the smoothing or planing of the roote surfaces using a scaling instrument to remove plaque and tartar from the surface areas of an exposed root.

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Gum Disease Leads to Tooth Loss

What Causes Gum Disease?

Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums and leads to periodontitis, or gum disease. Gingivitis develops due to bacteria build up making the gums inflamed and while you brush your teeth they may bleed. If not treated, Gingivitis can cause the gums to separate from teeth to form pockets where debris like bacteria and the toxins and poisons they produce, microorganisms, as well as the body’s natural infection-fighting enzymes, destroy gum tissue and bone. As the pockets deepen, teeth become loose, and tooth loss occurs. The leading cause of tooth loss in adults is gum disease.

How Often Should I Get My Teeth Cleaned?

For most people who practice good oral hygiene, the expert dentists and dental hygienist at NW Dental suggest visiting a dentist for an examination and periodontal cleaning twice a year at one of our Houston or Cypress area clinics. If you have experienced periodontal disease you should have your teeth cleaned more often since you are more likely to develop periodontitis again.

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