What Does a Dental Deep Cleaning Focus on?

Dental Cleaning and Examinations West Grove, PA

In addition to regular dental checkups, dental deep cleaning can be an important step in maintaining good oral health. This treatment, which is sometimes recommended for patients with severe plaque buildup or gum disease, can be used to address current issues while preventing new ones from developing in the future. The process is straightforward and can be helpful for patients of virtually every dental background.

The treatment process

The main purpose of a deep dental cleaning is to remove the bacterial buildup related to severe gum disease. Typically, a hygienist or dentist schedules one as needed after a thorough evaluation during a regular checkup. While many treatments can be completed in two visits, others may require multiple sessions, depending on the severity of the case. A follow-up appointment will also be needed to ensure gum health keeps improving.


The treatment typically begins with a focused scaling of the exterior surfaces of the teeth. This type of procedure is also performed at regular dental cleanings, but it is usually more thorough and comprehensive during a deep cleaning. Precise, fine-tipped instruments are used to scrape away plaque and tartar accumulation from each tooth and around the gumline. Some offices may also use ultrasonic instruments to break up tough buildup.

Root planing

Once scaling is complete, a dental professional uses similar tools to remove bacteria and buildup from the surfaces of the roots of the teeth. This process, known as root planing, occurs below the gumline where pockets of bacteria can form and fester. It may also involve smoothing the more malleable root surfaces to prevent bacteria from taking hold in these pockets or crevices.

Understanding the need for dental deep cleaning

Typically, this type of treatment is prescribed when a dental professional observes signs of significant gum disease. These indications may include:

  • Excessive bleeding and inflammation of the gums
  • Gum recession leading to large pockets along the teeth
  • Bone or gum deterioration

These signs may occur when a patient does not observe healthy brushing and flossing practices and skips regular six-month checkups. In these situations, a dental deep cleaning may be used as a one-time treatment to help get a patient back on track while restoring dental health. However, the symptoms can also be the result of gingivitis and even periodontitis. If this is the case, patients will need more frequent checkups and additional deep cleanings to prevent severe gum recession and bone or tooth loss. This approach may help postpone or eliminate the need for surgery in the future.


A dental deep cleaning is used to remove bacterial and tartar buildup from the surfaces of the teeth both above and below the gumline. This procedure can be recommended for patients with signs of serious gum disease or for those who have gone too long between dental checkups and cleanings. Deep cleanings can help remove bacteria, promote healing, and prevent further buildup and recession in the soft tissues of the mouth when accompanied by proper oral hygiene at home.

Request an appointment here: https://www.smilesinpa.com or call Jenny Chen Pediatric and Family Dentistry at (610) 400-1588 for an appointment in our West Grove office.

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