Scaling and root planing, otherwise known as conventional periodontal therapy, non-surgical periodontal therapy, or deep cleaning, is the process of removing or eliminating the etiologic agents – dental plaque, its products, and calculus – which cause inflammation, thus helping to establish a periodontium that is free of disease.
Current treatment for periodontitis involves scraping dental plaque, the polymicrobial biofilm, off the tooth, a procedure called scaling. Root planing involves scaling the tooth’s root. Scaling and root planing are often referred to as deep cleaning.
The objective for periodontal scaling and root planing is to remove dental plaque and calculus (tartar), which house bacteria that release toxins which cause inflammation to the gum tissue and surrounding bone.