Is Dental Deep Cleaning Painful?

dental deep cleaning Dallas, TX

One of the major reasons many people fear procedures like a dental deep cleaning is the thought of experiencing pain. Some procedures are indeed painful, but with numbing options available, patients do not have to feel any discomfort during the procedure. Regular teeth cleanings that are done to remove food debris and plaque do not hurt. But what about dental deep cleanings to eliminate bacteria in gum pockets to stimulate healing from gum disease?

The truth about dental deep cleanings

The truth about this procedure is that every patient has a different experience. Some may not experience pain, especially those with minimal gum pocket depths; they may feel little or no discomfort throughout and after the cleaning process, even without administering anesthetics.

On the other hand, some patients experience pain during and after the in-depth dental deep cleaning process. One’s experience is mostly based on the depth of the gum pockets and the severity of the root surface irregularities. Pain is usually inevitable if the periodontal pockets are deep.

How painful is the process?

Fortunately, patients who are scared of suffering pain or deal with a form of dental anxiety can talk to a periodontist about anesthetic options. The periodontist can numb the area with topical anesthetic gel or injectable anesthetics. Sleep dentistry is also an option – throughout the procedure, the patient will be deep slumber and will not feel any of the activities happening in the mouth. With the anesthetics option, the fear most people have about the pain is actually needless.

Before the dental deep cleaning procedure, the gums may be swollen or inflamed. Additionally, the deep pockets may also be filled with bacteria. Scaling and root planing are effective for correcting the problem, but they are bound to cause discomfort and bleeding to an extent. The periodontist will administer a local anesthetic if the dental deep cleaning process is likely to cause serious irritation.

It is also necessary to note that whatever pain happens during the dental deep cleaning procedure can be managed properly. The dentist handling the procedure can prevent or reduce the level of discomfort by breaking down the procedure into multiple stages.

Discomfort after the procedure

Patients should be aware that discomfort can happen after the treatment, but it is mostly bearable. Also, there are options available to reduce any form of soreness or sensitivity that occurs due to the cleaning. Over-the-counter painkillers work well to reduce pain. Rinsing the mouth with salt water can help alleviate the swelling and discomfort too.

Post-procedure symptoms like bleeding, discomfort and teeth sensitivity should not persist beyond one week. Gum swelling, tenderness or bleeding will get better slowly with time, provided the patient takes recommended precautions and brushes carefully. General discomfort usually stops within a day or two for most patients.

In conclusion

When patients are worried that the dental deep cleaning will cause pain, they can consult with a periodontist to discuss options. The periodontist will take measures to ensure whatever pain is experienced will not be too intense and unbearable. 

Request an appointment here: or call Highlands Family Dentistry at (214) 491-5362 for an appointment in our Dallas office.

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