Periodontal Scaling and Root Planing  is a non-surgical procedure. Don't let it scare you. It is, however, necessary to follow specific instructions to make it more comfortable afterwards. If you experience problems despite following the instructions, please call or e-mail me right away.

Discomfort?  Some discomfort can be expected when the anesthesia wears off, but not as much as you might expect.  Usually discomfort can occur if you brush or during more vigorous chewing.  Do not eat chewy foods, such as meats. You can go back to work immediately afterwards with little problem, unless you have significant bleeding (if your gums were severely inflamed and swollen).

Care of your mouth afterwards:     Routine brushing of your mouth, esp. if you use an electric toothbrush will be difficult, as it may cause soreness of your gums. If you must brush, place the brush under some warm or even hot water to soften the bristles. You should be able to floss as usual, but don’t go under the gums. Just how long it will be until you can brush your usual way depends on the severity of your problem. 

During a scaling and root planing procedure, special curettes are carried deep into the pockets to scrape out the sometimes tenacious calculus deposits. These curettes can also debride the epithelial linings of the pockets. Dr. Mao occasionally will contour the gum tissue itself (Gingivectomy) which is a small surgical procedure. In these special cases, an antibiotic mouth rinse (Periogard) will be prescribed to promote healing. 

To summarize, you should take special care not to brush your gums too hard during the first 7-10 days after scaling and root planing. In a typical case it is recommended that you wait for at least 4-5 days before brushing. If after 5 days your gums are still sore wait another 2 days and try again; if Dr. Mao has NOT prescribed the Periogard for you, please call him to tell him the situation and he will be glad to call in the prescription. You can also use Listerine or warm salt water (1/4 teaspoon per 8 oz. Glass of warm water). In addition, you can buy Chloraseptic at the drug store; it will numb your gums.


Richard Mao, D.M.D.
Practice Limited to Periodontics
402 Severn Bldg.
8600 La Salle Rd.
Towson, Md. 21286
Tel:(410) 321-9595
707 N.Hickory Ave.
Bel Air, Md. 21014
Tel:(410) 879-6969