St. Francisville: Dental Cleaning vs. Scaling & Root Planing

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According to a recent survey, the majority of Americans understand the importance of seeing a dentist regularly, and scheduling St. Francisville dental cleanings is one way to accomplish this goal. While there are many types of dental cleanings, two notable ones are prophylaxis (regular, preventative teeth cleaning sessions) and scaling and root planing. Knowing the difference between these two treatments can save you time in the long run – not to mention expense. With both procedures being relatively standard, Feliciana Dental dives deep into how they differ from one another as well as their benefits.


Keeping your smile healthy is essential to a happy and functional life, and one of the most crucial steps to caring for your teeth is keeping your mouth hygienic–either through regular dental cleanings or scaling and root planing.

The purpose of regular dental cleanings is to help prevent cavities, gum disease, and tooth decay. This process involves cleaning the teeth and gums, which can efficiently remove plaque build-up and tartar that cannot be removed at home. By scheduling St. Francisville dental cleanings at least twice a year, you can improve your oral health and keep your beautiful smile shining bright.

However, for some patients, regular dental cleaning may not be enough to treat severe bad breath, periodontal disease, and other adverse conditions. This is where scaling and root planing come into play. The purpose of scaling and root planing is to clean below the gumline and remove any plaque or tartar that has built up, damaging the roots of the teeth. By doing so, scaling and root planing can help prevent further damage and inflammation to the gums and promote overall dental health. 

Tartar Removal

Tartar is a dental term that refers to hardened plaque that can eventually lead to gum disease and tooth loss if left untreated. This buildup of bacteria and mineral deposits can occur on the teeth and below the gumline, making it difficult to remove with regular brushing and flossing. While it may seem harmless, tartar can cause serious oral health issues (such as gum disease)  if left unchecked, so it’s essential to keep it at bay.

Regular dental cleanings can help manage tartar buildup and ensure a healthy mouth by removing tartar from the surface of teeth. During St. Francisville dental cleanings, our dentist will use specialized tools to break down and eliminate tartar buildup from the teeth’s surface, preventing it from causing further damage to your teeth and gums. Therefore, if you want to maintain your oral health, routine dental cleanings should be an essential part of your routine care. On the other hand, scaling and root planing is a two-step process that targets tartar below the gumline – a place where your toothbrush and floss just can’t reach.

Depth of Cleaning

Regular St. Francisville dental cleanings can usually be completed in one session, which typically occurs every six months. During this appointment, the dental hygienist will use special tools to remove plaque and tartar buildup that can lead to cavities and gum disease if left untreated. They’ll also polish and floss your teeth to leave them looking and feeling clean.

Scaling and root planing is a more in-depth dental cleaning. First, your dentist will use a scaler to remove the tartar buildup, layer by layer. Then, they’ll gently smooth out the roots of your teeth to prevent further buildup from occurring in the future.

Depending on the severity and reach of your case, our dentist may spread out scaling and root planing between two sessions. Also, it’s important to note that scaling and root planing are often done more frequently than regular dental cleanings, say every 3-4 months, for patients with severe gum disease. While it may sound initially overwhelming, following our dentist’s recommendations and adhering to a strict oral hygiene routine will go a long way toward preventing gum disease and other oral complications.

St. Francisville Dental Cleanings, Scaling & Root Planing, & More

Caring for your teeth now through regular dental cleanings can save you from more significant dental problems down the road and negate the need for scaling and root planing. If you’re due for a check-up, don’t hesitate to book your next Francisville dental cleaning or scaling and root planing session today. Feliciana Dental looks forward to keeping your smile shining bright and your oral health in tip-top shape!

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