Plantation, Florida Dental Implant Specialist Dr. Mauricio Hervas

Periodontal maintenance versus Prophylaxis

“Implantation Dental Center was briefly explaining to me the difference between a periodontal maintenance and a prophylaxis, I was not sure when and why to get one or the other” – Patient

Understanding Prophylaxis

Prophylaxis are well known as regular cleanings. If you are a patient with a healthy mouth, without bone or gums problems, you are a candidate only for a prophylaxis. A regular cleaning removes soft plaque, tartar, calculus and stains that you may have on your teeth. Spots were your toothbrush and floss hardly reaches.

They are recommended for patients with no infections around their teeth and gums, if there is no bone loss or periodontal disease.

A regular cleaning is recommended to do it every 6 months when it does not show any symptoms of bleeding, inflammation, mobility of the teeth, receded areas, or gaps where the spaces around the roots of the teeth are exposed. The color of the gum are usually pink not fluorescent red. In order to prevent the beginning of a Periodontal disease.

A regular cleaning, or prophylaxis, removes soft plaque, tartar, and stains from the teeth above the gum line, and only slightly below. It is consider as a preventive dental procedure is usually depending on how quickly stain, plaque, and tartar accumulate.

Regular cleanings will help to reduce the risk of having a periodontal disease.

Periodontal Maintenance

When we talk about periodontal maintenance, (PM) or perio maintenance, we are referring to a totally different procedure than a regular prophy or a regular cleaning (in this case a regular cleaning is not appropriate). If you are a patient that has had active perio treatment, periodontitis, which is a chronic and non-curable bacterial infection, you must have a periodontal maintenance to keep the disease under control.

A periodontal disease occurs when there is bone loss, gum “pockets” deeper than 4 millimeters, bleeding gums, exposed root surfaces.

Perio maintenance will usually be performed between 3 and 4 times per year. It will all depend on how severe are the factors like plaque and tartar accumulation, how much bleeding or inflammation is present.

Periodontal maintenance is routinely performed after deep cleaning (scaling and root planning SRP) or surgical periodontal treatment which includes removal of plaque and tartar from above and below the gum line, all the way down the length of each tooth to where the root, gum, and bone meet. Rough areas of the roots are smoothed if needed, pocket depths are carefully monitored, and inflamed pockets may be irrigated with antibacterial medicines if necessary (reduced or eliminated). This procedure is usually under local anesthesia and sometimes under nitrous or light sedation.

It is extremely important to have extra care to maintain your teeth as healthy as possible.

Trust us with your smile with confidence. Call Implantation Dental Center at 954-476-0770. Our Board Certified Specialists are ready to help you.

(954) 476-0770