Almost half of the American population over the age of 30 has some level of periodontal (gum) disease. Taking care of your gums can improve the longevity of your teeth, and even prolong your life.
Periodontal (gum) disease is an infection of the gums. Bacterial plaque that has hardened to tartar can only be removed by a dentist/hygienist. The early stage of gum disease is known as gingivitis. The most common characteristic of periodontics is bone loss around your teeth. Your teeth will loosen up and may fall out. Aside from bad breath and bleeding gums, there are very few early warning signals of gum disease. It accelerates silently, often without pain, and before you know it, you are losing your teeth and you don't know why.
Regular dental checkups can detect periodontal disease at even its earliest stages.
Scaling and planing are non-surgical procedures used to treat advanced cases of gingivitis. Left untreated, gingivitis can lead to periodontics (gum disease), which is the leading cause for tooth loss in adults. Scaling is the removal of the dental tartar from the tooth surface while root planing is the process of smoothening the root surfaces and removing the infected tooth structure.