calculus relative to the gingival margin. The objective of scaling is to remove calculus from the tooth surface. This is easy to accomplish when the calculus is located on the enamel of the tooth. Calculus attached to the root surface, however, is embedded in the surface irregularities and is much more difficult to remove. The dentist or hygienist will smooth out the irregularities and remove the calculus. As this is done, some root structure is removed. This is referred to as root planing. Several instruments have been designed for scaling and root planing. They include sickles, curettes, files, chisels, and hoes (illustrated in figure 6-6). We will discuss dental implant scaling instruments.
A sickle scaler (fig. 6-7) is primarily designed for removal of supragingival calculus. Sickles with straight shanks are designed to adapt to anterior teeth, and those with contra-angled shanks (called Jacquettes) adapt to posterior teeth and are illustrated in figure 6-8. The basic characteristics of the sickle scaler are they are triangular in shape, have two cutting edges, and are pointed at the tip. The cutting edge is
Figure 6-7. - Sickle scaler.
Figure 6-8. - Jacquette double-ended scaler.
inserted under the ledge of calculus and used with a pull stroke.
The curette is the instrument of choice for subgingival calculus removal, root planing, and removing soft tissue from the periodontal pocket. The
Figure 6-6. - Scaling and root planing instruments.Continue Reading