By Kimberly Chapman, D.D.S.
August 08, 2018

What your dentist in Bothell wants you to know

You’ve been told you could benefit from scaling and root planing, but what is it and why is it a good idea? These are excellent questions,scaling and root planing and Dr. Kimberly Chapman in Bothell, WA, wants to answer them. She would like to introduce you to the importance of scaling and root planing and how you and your smile can benefit.

Scaling and root planing are different from a regular dental cleaning. Regular dental cleanings are reserved for people with generally healthy gum tissue and little to no bone loss around their teeth. Scaling and root planing is a specialized treatment for people who are in the early stages of gum and periodontal disease.

Gingivitis is inflammation and infection of your gums. It can be reversed by regular cleanings, brushing several times each day, and daily flossing. If gum disease is allowed to progress, the infection moves on to the bone supporting your teeth. Bone destruction starts around your teeth, and you develop “pockets” surrounding your teeth. You now have periodontal disease.

These pockets are difficult to clean, so they get deeper as the infection and inflammation progress. The deeper they get, the harder they are to clean. Many people are not aware that periodontal disease causes more tooth loss than cavities do! Maintaining your beautiful, healthy smile becomes more and more difficult with deep periodontal pockets. Scaling and root planing by a skilled dental professional can help.

Scaling utilizes hand tools and ultrasonic devices to clean both soft deposits (plaque) and hard deposits (calculus or tartar) from your teeth. Root planing is performed to smooth the root surfaces of your teeth. A rough root surface is the perfect environment for plaque to thrive. By smoothing out the root surface, plaque can’t adhere to the root as easily.

The benefits of scaling and root planing include:

  • Reduction of bleeding when you brush and floss
  • Reduction or elimination of gum pain
  • Restoration of healthy, pink, firm gum tissue
  • A healthy attachment of soft tissue to tooth
  • A smile that is easier for you to keep clean by brushing and flossing

To find out more about scaling and root planing and other periodontal therapy procedures, please visit the Periodontal Therapy page on the website at

Scaling and root planing can help keep your smile healthy and beautiful. Your dentist can help keep your smile looking and feeling great, so pick up the phone and call Dr. Chapman in Bothell, WA, today!