Realities and Myths About Scaling of Teeth

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Scaling is the fastest growing dental prophylaxis, to remove the etiologic agents (dental plaque & calculus) which irritate the gums & cause inflammation over time leads to the early stage of gum disease called gingivitis.

If gingivitis not treated, the inflammation will work its way down towards the foundation of the tooth causing a periodontal pocket & within the confines of the pocket cause more damage. This damage can further breakdown the supporting (bone) structures of the teeth.

To stop gum disease from progressing, periodontal therapy (SRP= Scaling & Root Planning) is being advised, to get rid of the bacteria in the pocket & helps the gums adhere more firmly to the teeth.

Scaling if done at a proper time, that is, every six months to remove calculus, the cycle of gum disease is broken & the onset of gum disease is prevented.

MYTHS

Age old wrong notations about the scaling of teeth are absolutely baseless, that is:

  1. Scaling causes weakening & mobility of teeth.
  2. Gaps are increased then before.
  3. Teeth become sensitive.

SCIENTIFIC   REASONING  AGAINST  THE  MYTHS

  1. May be the deposits are removed too late, at a stage when most of the bone is lost & teeth are temporarily cemented together with hard calculus, tooth may move after scaling. Hence scaling does not make teeth loose, they have already become loose due to calculus. Only the removal of patch of calculus has set in the mobility. This happens at a very late stage.
  2. In some cases there are gaps between teeth which get covered by tooth colored tartar. On removal of this tartar the patient feels the gap has occurred due to cleaning of teeth, which is wrong.
  3. As the tartar is removed, the concealed part of the teeth is exposed to the oral environment thereby causing mild to moderate sensitivity to the teeth, which is transient. The sensitivity vanishes in a day or two and most of the patients do not even experience this sensitivity.

REST ASSURED SCALING WILL NOT WEAKEN YOUR TEETH RATHER IT WILL MAKE THEM STRONGER.

References:

  1. Giusto, T. Non-surgical vs. surgical periodontal therapy, SUNY Stonybrook, June 1997, page 1
  2. http://www.smilesbydrlele.com/scaling-/-cleaning-of-teeth.htm
  3. http://www.whereincity.com/medical/topic/dental-health/articles/162.htm