If you have a stubborn case of gum disease, your dentist may recommend a dental procedure called dental scaling. This will remove plaque and tartar from your teeth and help your gums regain health. The scaling process is usually done in conjunction with a procedure known as root planing.
During the teeth scaling process, your dentist or dental hygienist will numb the gums and tooth roots with a local anesthesia, but teeth scaling and root planing cause very little discomfort. Your dentist or dental hygienist will use specialized tools to remove the hardened deposits of plaque buildup (tartar) from the teeth both above and below the gum line. Root planing involves smoothing rough spots on the roots of the teeth that can promote gum disease by trapping and holding bacteria.