Periodontal Exams

A periodontal exam is a way to assess your overall oral health by examining your teeth, plaque, gums, bite, bone structure and risk factors. Optimal periodontal health is essential to maintaining excellent overall dental health.

Periodontal and Deep Cleaning FAQs

  • How long will I be numb?
    Your lips, teeth, cheek and/or tongue may be numb for several hours after the procedure. To avoid injury, you should avoid any chewing and hot beverage until the numbness has completely worn off. It is very easy to bite or burn your tongue, cheek or lip while you are numb.
  • Is it normal for my gums or jaw to be sore?
    Irritation to the gum tissue can occur from dental work. Rinsing your mouth 2-3 times per day with ½ tsp of warm saltwater can help to alleviate discomfort. Injection sites can be sore for several days after your appointment. Over the counter pain medications works well to alleviate the tenderness.
  • Is it normal for my gums to bleed when I brush and floss?
    You may encounter some bleeding while brushing and flossing. It is important to continue gentle brushing with a soft toothbrush and flossing even if bleeding occurs. As healing progresses, the bleeding will gradually reduce or disappear.
  • Why do I now have spaces between my teeth?
    After removal of plaque and tartar buildup, it is common to have spaces between your teeth and gum tissue. Some spaces may appear as “black triangles” near the gum area, whereas other spaces may separate the teeth. Flossing and brushing regularly will keep the spaces from building up with plaque and tartar.
  • Is it normal for my teeth to be sensitive?
    Normal healing results in some tissue tightening and shrinkage which way expose more tooth structure leading to sensitivity to cold, hot or sweets. This is a common side effect and usually diminished with time.
  • Can I do anything for my sensitivity?
    Continue to brush and floss to remove plaque bacterial that produces acids which contributes to tooth sensitivity. Brushing with a “sensitivity toothpaste” will help alleviate the sensitivity over a 2-4 week time frame. If the sensitivity lasts longer, contact the office and special fluoride rinses or toothpastes may be prescribed.
  • When do I come back after my “deep cleaning”?
    Normally 2-3 weeks after your “deep cleaning”, you will be brought back to the office for reevaluation of the pocketing. At this time, we will recommend the time frame of your subsequent periodontal cleanings, called periodontal maintenance or supportive periodontal therapy. These cleaning usually are preformed 3-4 times per year and are important to prevent reinfection and possible tooth loss.