Scaling is a fast-growing dental prophylaxis procedure that involves the removal of causative agents (plaque and calculus) that cause gum disease. Gum disease, also called gingivitis, if not treated, can work its way towards the foundation of teeth and cause damage to the supporting structures (bones) of our teeth. If scaling is done at a proper time, that is, every six months to remove calculus, the cycle of gum disease is broken and the onset of gum disease is prevented. Scaling is a safe and routine procedure and does not damage the tooth surface in any way.

When is Dental Scaling Necessary?

Everyone experiences some form of plaque buildup. When you scratch your nails on your teeth in the morning, a creamy material gets entangled in your nails; this is called plaque. The saliva, bacteria, and proteins in your mouth form a thin layer that covers your teeth at almost all times. When you eat, tiny particles, acids, and sugars from the food stick to this film, creating a buildup on the teeth known as plaque. The bacteria that live in this plaque can cause gum disease and tooth decay. Brushing, flossing, and regular dental cleanings will help remove plaque and prevent more serious problems.

Our saliva secretes phosphate crystals, which get adhered to plaque and get solidified, called tarter. Plaque and tartar lead to gum diseases. If you have healthy gums, the tissue will fit tightly around the tooth and keep plaque out. However, if gum disease begins to form, this tissue will loosen. When the gums have become so diseased that they are pulling away from the teeth, they create spaces called pockets. Healthy gums attach to the tooth just 1 to 3 millimetres below the gum line. With gum disease, you’ll begin to develop deeper pockets. These can fill with plaque, worsening your problems and causing symptoms like bad breath. If you have pockets of 4 millimetres or more, your dentist will probably recommend dental scaling to remove the plaque beneath the gum line and help treat the gum disease.

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