There are a variety of treatments for gum disease depending on the stage of disease, how you may have responded to earlier treatments, and your overall health.
Treatments range from nonsurgical therapies that control bacterial growth to surgery to restore supportive tissues.
Nonsurgical periodontal therapy consists of scaling and root planing with local anesthesia to provide patient comfort.
Scaling and root planing are done if your dentist or periodontist determines that you have plaque and calculus (hardened plaque, also called tartar) under the gums that need to be removed.
A deep-cleaning, nonsurgical procedure, scaling and root planing are done under a local anesthetic. Plaque and tartar from above and below the gum line are scraped away (scaling) and rough spots on the tooth root are made smooth (planing). Smoothing the rough spots removes bacteria and provides a clean surface for the gums to reattach to the teeth.
Non-surgical periodontal treatment does have its limitations. When it does not achieve periodontal health, surgery may be indicated to restore periodontal health.
Most periodontists would agree that after scaling and root planing, many patients do not require any further active treatment. However, the majority of patients will require ongoing maintenance therapy to sustain health.