A Dental Deep Cleaning Is Underneath the Gums

Dental Cleaning and Examinations Boca Raton, FL

Patients can receive a dental deep cleaning for a variety of different reasons, but the most common is gum disease. Deep cleaning is necessary to eliminate plaque that has built up between the teeth and gums, sometimes below the gumline. Though it may sound intimidating, this kind of cleaning is not painful and can help keep teeth and gums healthier for longer.

Aspects of deep cleanings

A dental deep cleaning, also called periodontal scaling and root planing, involves several steps depending on the severity of plaque buildup and gum degeneration. When patients go into an appointment, they can expect the following procedures:


Depending on the size of the area being cleaned, a quadrant or half of the patient’s mouth is numbed before the procedure. Dental deep cleaning sometimes requires going under the gums to remove plaque, so numbing the mouth prevents the patient from experiencing any pain or discomfort. Generally only half of a patient’s mouth is cleaned during one appointment, and then the other half may be cleaned in a second appointment.


Plaque is a yellowish substance that sticks to the outside of teeth and contains bacteria that can emit toxins into the gums. The dentist may use a hand instrument to remove the plaque from pockets between the gums and teeth. These pockets become deeper with the onset of periodontal disease, as the infected tissue of the gums recedes.


Root planing is the method of removing cementum and dentine from the root of the tooth. Bacteria can infect this portion of a tooth, and scraping part of it away allows the tooth to begin the healing process. The end result leaves the root free of bacteria and smoothed over.

Effects of gingivitis and periodontitis

If left untreated, gum disease can manifest into major oral problems in the future. It can affect not only the health of the teeth but that of the tissue and ligaments connecting the teeth to the jawbone.


Inflamed, overly sensitive, tender, and/or red gums can all indicate gingivitis, the beginning stage of gum disease. Gums that bleed after brushing or flossing are also a sign that bacteria has set in between the teeth and gums. Someone with these problems should contact a dentist for advice.

Weakened tissue

Periodontitis is the second stage of gum disease, with negative effects that go deeper than the gums. Toxins released by bacteria start to affect the tissue and ligaments between teeth and the jawbone, threatening the stability of teeth in the mouth.

Losing teeth

At its most severe, advanced periodontitis has eaten away at those tissues and ligaments so that they are no longer structural supports. This is the most common reason people lose teeth.


Gum disease can become a serious problem if not addressed. Catching it early and getting a dental deep cleaning can prevent the buildup of plaque and bacteria for a healthier mouth.

Request an appointment here: https://www.ismileboca.com or call iSmile Dental - Dr. James Helmy at (561) 225-2054 for an appointment in our Boca Raton office.

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