We have you rinse for one minute with chlorhexidine gluconate, an antiseptic solution to reduce the bacterial count in your mouth. This reduces the amount of bacteria introduced into the air during your appointment and helps us to maintain a healthier environment for everyone.
This is a concentrated food dye used lo easily identify soft bacterial plaque deposits on your teeth. It helps us zero in on areas requiring more attention and spots where we can coach you on how to remove plaque more effectively at home.
Long-term control of periodontal disease rests in your hands. Daily removal of the bacterial plaque film that deposits on the tooth surface is critical. We will coach you as necessary so that you are able to accomplish this task. If you use a mechanical toothbrush, please bring it with you to your initial therapy appointments
Root Planing and Curettage
Scaling and root planing is the technical term for the process of meticulously cleaning the roots of your teeth. We start by using an ultrasonic instrument called the Piezo. The rapid vibration of the piezo tip fractures the hard and soft deposits off the tooth. Water helps to flush the debris from the gum pocket. We follow this with curettes and scalers, our hand instruments, to further clean and smooth the root surfaces.
Polishing is a cosmetic procedure using a rubber cup polisher and mild abrasive paste to remove stain from above the gum line. It is an optional treatment as it does not offer any benefit to controlling dental disease.
The final procedure we perform is to minimize sensitivity of tooth root. We most commonly use a fluoride preparation that is a varnish which is painted onto exposed tooth surfaces. Fluoride is additionally beneficial as it kills bacteria and renders your tooth enamel more resistance to decay. Specific areas that are particularly sensitive to temperature, touch or sweets may also be treated with other desensitizing chemical preparations.
Here are some steps to help with the healing process.
As the anesthetic is coming out you may find it helpful to take Tylenol or Advil every four hours or at bedtime as needed. You can expect your gums to be tender for a few days. If discomfort persists, please call our office.
Do not be alarmed if you notice pinkish saliva. We suggest you cover your pillow with a towel that first night to avoid any stains to your pillow. Should bleeding be a concern, apply a moistened tea bag to the area.
Even though desensitization treatments are provided at each appointment some tooth and/or root sensitivity is normal and may last for up to eight weeks. To treat this, you can use Sensodyne, Crest or Colgate toothpastes for sensitive teeth. Effective plaque removal is critical to resolution. Professional home treatment preparations are available from our office if your sensitivity is severe.
Salt Water Rinsing
To help soothe tender guns you may wish to rinse your mouth with a saline solution consisting of 1/2 teaspoon of salt in a 1/7 cup of warm water. You may rinse as often as you like, but do not increase the salt concentration.
Brushing and Flossing
Start tomorrow with the brushing and flossing techniques demonstrated by the hygienist. Effectively removing the bacteria daily is of the utmost importance to controlling gum disease.
Avoid eating, chewing, or drinking hot food or liquids until the anesthetic is completely out. If your gums are especially tender, you will find it helpful to eat only soft foods for a day or two. Re-introduce your normal diet when you feel comfortable to do so.
Three months after initial therapy your periodontist will see you to re-examine your periodontal condition and the hygienist will remove any bacterial plaque and toxins that have grown under your gums. At this time, you and the periodontist will chart the course for further treatment as necessary.
Call our office immediately if you experience severe discomfort, swelling or symptoms of infection.