Scaling is the most common way to treat gum disease. A sticky, bacteria filled layer which is called as plaque forms on the tooth surfaces. This layer is invisible to the naked eye and if neglected will result in the formation of a thick band known as calculus.
Once calculus gets a hold of the tooth it tends to accumulate in the area along and just below the gum line and destroys bone and tissue along the way. In such cases it is advisable to do a scaling or cleaning which removes these harmful layers that the normal toothbrushes cannot do.
According to the severity and health of the patient we either perform it in one or two visits. Scaling can be done with hand-held instrument where we manually remove the plaque from the teeth by relying on touch to identify areas of tartar build up and rough spots.
Scaling with ultrasonic instruments is where we use instruments which clean the plaque from the teeth with a vibrating metal tip that chips off the tartar and a water spray to wash it away and keep the tip cool.
Fluoride plays an important role in the prevention of dental caries.
The primary mechanism of action of fluoride in preventing dental caries is topical. Fluoride acts in the following ways to prevent dental caries.
Varnish is professionally applied sticky resin of highly concentrated fluoride (upto 22,660 ppm)
Application frequency ranges from 2-6 times per year. 33% reduction in decayed, missing and filled tooth surfaces were observed in primary teeth and 46% reduction in permanent teeth.
Children of 5 years of age and under should receive professional fluoride treatment at least every 6 months.
Dental sealants are a thin plastic – like coating that fill in the grooves on chewing surfaces of the teeth and protect them from tooth decay.