Scaling and Root Planing: Non-Surgical Treatment

Sore, bleeding gums and bad breath are common signs of gum disease. While the short-term symptoms of gingivitis or periodontitis can be uncomfortable and embarrassing, the long-term damage can be irreversible if it is not treated in time. To minimize the risk of tooth loss and jawbone recession, patients who have been diagnosed with gum disease often undergo scaling and root planing, or a deep cleaning. Dr. Jerry Hancock and his team of skilled hygienists perform scaling and root planing at their Nashville, TN, office. Treatment can address immediate concerns as well as protect patients’ smiles for years to come.

Benefits of Scaling and Root Planing

The scaling and root planing procedure is designed to address gum disease symptoms and also restore your overall oral health. Most notably, in the days and weeks following your deep cleaning, you should notice that your gums no longer feel sore and tender. The appearance of your smile can also benefit from scaling and root planing. Your teeth may appear brighter and your gums will be free from swelling associated with gum disease. Other benefits include:

  • Better-smelling breath
  • Prevention of gum recession
  • Cost savings compared to more invasive treatments

Am I a Candidate for a Deep Cleaning?

Patients who have mild to moderate gum disease are typically candidates for scaling and root planing. Patients who have symptoms of severe gum disease may require alternative treatments. When gum disease has gone untreated for too long, damage to the bone and soft tissue becomes apparent. Dr. Hancock can treat advanced gum disease with pocket reduction surgery, soft tissue grafting, or bone grafting, depending on the severity of your case.

ultrasonic scaler

Our advanced ultrasonic scaler helps minimize discomfort while effectively breaking up deposits beneath the gumline.

How Deep Cleaning Works

Scaling refers to the process of removing plaque and tartar from beneath the gum line. Root planing then smooths the dental roots so healthy gum tissue can reattach. During your visit, we will ensure your comfort by applying a numbing agent to your gums. Some patients might also opt for sedation dentistry if they are feeling especially anxious. Then, one of our trained staff will use various tools to remove plaque near the base of your teeth. Once the area beneath your gum line is clean, the base of your teeth will be smoothed out to prevent the return of damaging bacteria.

Our office employs the best and latest technology and practices, and we prioritize our patients’ comfort and safety. 

Our hygienists are trained to provide relaxing, thorough dental care. Our ultrasonic scaler uses high-frequency vibrations to remove stains and tartar with minimal discomfort. If a deep pocket of infection is found, we will place an antibiotic called Arestin® in the area to completely eradicate the bacteria.

Schedule an Appointment Today

In order to effectively halt the spread of gum disease, early intervention is key. The sooner Dr. Hancock can assess your oral health and recommend treatment, the better your outcome should be. Our office employs the best and latest technology and practices, and we prioritize our patients’ comfort and safety. To learn more about our professional cleanings and periodontal care, contact our office online or call (615) 383-0132

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"The staff is super friendly and efficient, and I always walk out of their office with a smile…a much brighter one!”


2505 21st Avenue South, Floor 5

(615) 383-0132


6:00 am-5:00 pm


6:00 am-5:00 pm


6:00 am-5:00 pm


6:00 am-5:00 pm


6:00 am-12:00 pm