Preventive Dentistry


Cleanings & Periodontal Treatment

Types Of Cleanings

At River Oaks Dental, we offer both Periodontal Maintenance and Routine Cleanings/Prophylaxis for children and adults. We have four Registered Dental Hygienists available to meet your periodontal needs. Click Here to Meet Our Team >>.

What kind of cleaning do I need?

What is the difference between a Routine Cleaning (prophylaxis) and Periodontal Maintenance?

  • During a Routine Cleaning, the Dental Hygienist will remove plaque and tartar from above the gumline using a combination of polishing, hand scaling, and ultrasonic scaling. Superficial staining can be removed during the cleaning as well. A Routine Cleaning is recommended for children, teens, and adults with healthy gums every 3-6 months.
  • During Periodontal Maintenance, the Dental Hygienist will remove plaque and tartar from above and below the gumline using a combination of polishing, hand scaling, ultrasonic scaling, oral irrigation, and if needed, use of local anesthetic for localized deeper scaling. Periodontal Maintenance is necessary every 3-4 months for patients that have active gum disease and have had Scaling and Root Planing or other Periodontal Treatment in the past.

Periodontal Treatment

What are my treatment options for Periodontal (Gum) Disease?

Treatment will depend on the severity of your gum disease, but can include:

  • Scaling & Root Planing (RPT/Deep Cleanings)
  • Medication Placement (Arestin)
  • PerioProtect Trays

What is Scaling & Root Planing?

Scaling & Root Planing

Scaling & Root Planing is often referred to as a Deep Cleaning. When your hygienist measures the space between your tooth and gum, a pocket may be detected. If the pocket is deep, a regular cleaning is not effective in removing bacteria. Over time, the bacteria will harden and cause inflammation and sometime bone loss. Scaling is the removal of hardened plaque, called calculus or tartar. This process targets the area below the gum line, in a space between the gum and tooth (the pocket). Root planning further removes any hard calculus and smooths irregular areas of the root surface to allow the pocket to heal naturally against the tooth root, re-establishing a clean, maintainable environment.


Treating Periodontal Disease with the Perio Protect Method™PerioProtect™ allows you to supplement your in-office care of periodontal disease with home care.  The system employs specially designed trays that allow you to administer medications prescribed by Dr. Farr to the gingival crevices/pockets.

To begin, precise impressions of your mouth are taken and sent to a registered dental laboratory where customized trays are fabricated. These trays allow the medications to reach deeper into the gingival crevices, or periodontal pockets, allowing more comprehensive treatment.

The PerioTrays® used in the PerioProtect™ system have been approved for use by the FDA, but there have not been extensive clinical trials done to prove the effectiveness of treatment with these devices. For more information on this, please see the American Academy of Periodontology's article on the subject.