Gingivitis is a common and reversible form of gum disease that causes irritation, redness, and inflammation of your gums. It is important to take gingivitis seriously and to treat it promptly. Untreated gingivitis can lead to a more serious and irreversible gum disease called “periodontitis.”

The most common cause of gingivitis is non-ideal oral hygiene. Good oral habits such as flossing daily, brushing twice a day, and coming for regular dental cleanings can prevent and reverse gingivitis.

The doctor or hygienist may recommend a procedure called “scaling in the presence of generalized moderate or severe gingival inflammation” or gingivitis therapy. This is almost like a normal 6 month cleaning but requires removal of plaque and hardened plaque, also known as calculus, above and below the gumline. The plaque and hardened plaque will be removed using ultrasonic and hand scalers.

The hygienist will then polish your teeth. When gingivitis is reversed, the patient will also reverse back to a normal bi-annual cleaning, known as a “prophy.”