What is a Deep Cleaning and Why Would I Need One?
Deep cleaning might sound like something your dentist would recommend after you’ve neglected your dental duties for a prolonged period, but this isn’t always the case. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly half of U.S. adults have some form of periodontal disease, which is a serious condition.
While a deep cleaning can certainly address issues related to neglect in regular dental care, it has other benefits. It is a specialized procedure that treats gum and periodontal disease, and can also halt the progression of these conditions in their tracks.
What is a Deep Cleaning?
Deep cleaning is a procedure that aims to reduce the inflammation, swelling, and bleeding associated with tartar and plaque build-up along the gum lines and your teeth’s roots. In addition to treating these bothersome symptoms, the procedure also prevents gum disease from worsening.
This procedure is not the same thing as a regular teeth cleaning or prophylaxis. As the name suggests, deep cleaning involves a more thorough cleaning of the teeth and gums to remove the tartar and bacteria that can lead to gum issues.
Deep Cleaning Treatment
Deep cleaning is a non-surgical and non-invasive procedure. Some deep cleaning procedures involve root planing and scaling. Root planing removes bacteria and tartar that lie on pockets in the gum. Scaling is the process of scraping any plaque sitting above or below the gum lines.
The procedure is typically performed with a combination of hand and ultrasonic instruments. These use a combination of electricity, air, water, and high-frequency vibrating motions to remove debris around the pockets and teeth.
Deep cleaning is generally not painful since it is a noninvasive procedure. However, your level of discomfort may vary, and we may apply a topical numbing solution to certain areas. You can discuss these options with your dentist before the procedure.
How Much Does Deep Cleaning Cost?If you need to have a deep cleaning procedure, you might be wondering how much it is going to cost. We can certainly give you an estimate, but these prices vary for several reasons.
Some of the factors that can affect the cost of deep cleaning include:
- If the cleaning includes X-rays or an examination by the dentist, the cost will be higher.
- Teeth that need more attention may require some advanced procedures such as root planing or scaling.
- Insurance typically covers some or all of the cost of deep cleaning if it is considered necessary.
Deep Cleaning is Preventative
Deep cleaning is typically recommended for patients that have gingivitis or periodontal disease. Unfortunately, many patients that have a mild form of gum disease are unaware of the condition, and this procedure can prevent the disease from progressing and resulting in pain and tooth loss.
We will generally recommend deep cleaning if the depth of space between your teeth and gums exceeds the normal level of 3mm, which is considered a healthy level by the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research(NIDCR).
Gum disease can be serious and a precursor to other severe oral conditions. If your dentist recommends a deep cleaning treatment, this is something you should seriously consider for the sake of your oral health.